B-18003, JUNE 30, 1941, 20 COMP. GEN. 935

B-18003: Jun 30, 1941

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1941: I HAVE YOUR LETTER OF JUNE 18. AT THE PRESENT TIME 8 INSPECTORS ARE ON ACTIVE MILITARY DUTY AND 15 OTHERS WHO ARE MEMBERS OF THE OFFICERS' RESERVE CORPS MAY BE CALLED AT ANY TIME. EXCLUDING THOSE WHO ARE ON ACTIVE MILITARY DUTY. ARE ENGAGED IN ARRANGING POSTAL SERVICE TO AND FROM THE ARMY CAMPS AND IN ADJUSTING DISLOCATIONS OF NORMAL POSTAL SERVICE IN THE COMMUNITIES SURROUNDING CAMPS AND CENTERS OF NATIONAL DEFENSE MANUFACTURING. ALL THIS IS ADDITIONAL TO THE REGULAR VOLUME OF WORK REQUIRED OF THE INSPECTION SERVICE. THE DEPARTMENT IS AWARE THAT INSPECTORS CALLED TO ACTIVE MILITARY SERVICE MIGHT BE DROPPED FROM THE ROLLS AND OTHERS APPOINTED IN THEIR PLACES WITH THE UNDERSTANDING THAT THEY WOULD BE RELEGATED TO OTHER POSTAL POSITIONS WHEN THE SEPARATED INSPECTORS RETURN FROM MILITARY DUTY.

B-18003, JUNE 30, 1941, 20 COMP. GEN. 935

APPROPRIATION LIMITATION ON NUMBER OF EMPLOYEES - APPLICABILITY TO EMPLOYEES IN NONPAY STATUS AN APPROPRIATION PROVISION SPECIFYING THE NUMBER OF POSTAL INSPECTORS TO BE EMPLOYED THEREUNDER DOES NOT REQUIRE THE SEPARATION FROM THE POSTAL SERVICE OF INSPECTORS WHO ENTER THE MILITARY SERVICE UNDER THE SELECTIVE TRAINING AND SERVICE ACT OF 1940, AND PUBLIC RESOLUTION NO. 96 OF AUGUST 27, 1940, AS A PREREQUISITE TO EMPLOYING OTHERS TO TAKE THEIR PLACE WHILE CARRIED ON THE PAY ROLL IN A FURLOUGH OR LEAVE-WITHOUT-PAY STATUS, SO LONG AS THE NUMBER OF SUCH EMPLOYEES CARRIED ON THE ROLLS IN A PAY STATUS AT ANY ONE TIME DOES NOT EXCEED THE MAXIMUM SPECIFIED IN THE APPROPRIATION.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL WARREN TO THE POSTMASTER GENERAL, JUNE 30, 1941:

I HAVE YOUR LETTER OF JUNE 18, 1941, AS FOLLOWS:

SECTION 692, TITLE 39, U.S.C. STATES:

"POST-OFFICE INSPECTORS; APPOINTMENT. THE POSTMASTER GENERAL MAY EMPLOY SUCH NUMBER OF POST-OFFICE INSPECTORS AS THE GOOD OF THE SERVICE AND THE SAFETY OF THE MAIL MAY REQUIRE; AND THE APPOINTMENT OF ADDITIONAL INSPECTORS SHALL BE MADE UPON CERTIFICATION OF THE CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION.'

THE ACT PROVIDING APPROPRIATIONS FOR THE POST OFFICE DEPARTMENT FOR THE FISCAL YEAR 1942 STATES, IN PART:

"SALARIES OF INSPECTORS: FOR SALARIES OF FIFTEEN INSPECTORS IN CHARGE OF DIVISIONS AND 635 INSPECTORS, $2,444,700.'

AT THE PRESENT TIME 8 INSPECTORS ARE ON ACTIVE MILITARY DUTY AND 15 OTHERS WHO ARE MEMBERS OF THE OFFICERS' RESERVE CORPS MAY BE CALLED AT ANY TIME. STILL OTHERS MAY BE CALLED UNDER THE SELECTIVE SERVICE ACT.

THE CONDITION OF THE WORK OF THE INSPECTION SERVICE REQUIRES THE FULL EMPLOYMENT OF ALL THE AUTHORIZED PERSONNEL. IN RECOGNITION OF THIS FACT THE CONGRESS, IN THE 1942 APPROPRIATION ACT QUOTED ABOVE, AUTHORIZED AN INCREASE OF 35 MEN OVER THE NUMBER AUTHORIZED IN THE 1941 ACT. APPROXIMATELY 70 MEMBERS OF THE FORCE, EXCLUDING THOSE WHO ARE ON ACTIVE MILITARY DUTY, ARE ENGAGED IN ARRANGING POSTAL SERVICE TO AND FROM THE ARMY CAMPS AND IN ADJUSTING DISLOCATIONS OF NORMAL POSTAL SERVICE IN THE COMMUNITIES SURROUNDING CAMPS AND CENTERS OF NATIONAL DEFENSE MANUFACTURING. ALL THIS IS ADDITIONAL TO THE REGULAR VOLUME OF WORK REQUIRED OF THE INSPECTION SERVICE.

THE DEPARTMENT IS AWARE THAT INSPECTORS CALLED TO ACTIVE MILITARY SERVICE MIGHT BE DROPPED FROM THE ROLLS AND OTHERS APPOINTED IN THEIR PLACES WITH THE UNDERSTANDING THAT THEY WOULD BE RELEGATED TO OTHER POSTAL POSITIONS WHEN THE SEPARATED INSPECTORS RETURN FROM MILITARY DUTY. SUCH ACTION WOULD, HOWEVER, TEND TO HAVE A DISTURBING EFFECT UPON THE MORALE OF OUR PERSONNEL, PARTICULARLY IN VIEW OF THE FACT THAT IN OTHER BRANCHES OF THE POSTAL SERVICE AND IN OTHER DEPARTMENTS, GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES ARE BEING CARRIED IN A LEAVE-WITHOUT-PAY STATUS WITHOUT BEING DROPPED FROM THE ROLLS.

IT IS THE PRESENT PRACTICE TO RETAIN ON THE ROLLS OF THE POSTAL SERVICE THE NAME OF EACH INSPECTOR CALLED TO ACTIVE MILITARY DUTY AND TO MAKE A NOTATION OPPOSITE HIS NAME ON EACH PAY-ROLL FORM NO. 153 THAT HE IS ON LEAVE WITHOUT PAY FOR THAT REASON. IT IS DESIRED TO INQUIRE WHETHER IN THE PRESENT EMERGENCY ANY OBJECTION WOULD BE RAISED IF THE FOLLOWING ADDITIONAL PROCEDURE SHOULD BE FOLLOWED:

IN LIEU OF AN INSPECTOR ON LEAVE WITHOUT PAY ON ACCOUNT OF MILITARY DUTY, A SUCCESSOR WILL BE APPOINTED, THE ORDER OF APPOINTMENT STATING, FOR EXAMPLE," JOHN DOE, POST OFFICE CLERK, NEW YORK, NEW YORK, IS APPOINTED TO THE POSITION OF POST OFFICE INSPECTOR FOR NOT TO EXCEED THE DURATION OF THE MILITARY SERVICE OF RICHARD ROE, POST OFFICE INSPECTOR.'

UPON THE RETURN OF RICHARD ROE FROM MILITARY SERVICE AND HIS COMPLIANCE WITH THE REQUIREMENTS OF LAW, HE WILL BE RESTORED TO HIS FORMER POSITION IN ACCORDANCE WITH PARAGRAPHS A AND C OF SUBSECTION B, SECTION 8 OF THE SELECTIVE SERVICE ACT AND THE CORRESPONDING SECTION OF THE RESERVE COMPONENTS ACT; AND CONCURRENTLY, THE PERSON APPOINTED FOR THE DURATION OF HIS ABSENCE WILL BE DROPPED FROM THE ROLLS AS A POST OFFICE INSPECTOR AND REAPPOINTED TO HIS FORMER POSITION IN THE POSTAL SERVICE WITHOUT PREJUDICE.

IF, DURING THE MILITARY SERVICE OF RICHARD ROE, A VACANCY IN THE QUOTA OF POST OFFICE INSPECTORS OCCURS WHICH IS NOT CAUSED BY THE OPERATION OF THE SELECTIVE SERVICE OR RESERVE COMPONENTS ACT, JOHN DOE MIGHT BE REAPPOINTED THERETO.

IT WILL BE APPRECIATED IF THIS DEPARTMENT MAY BE FURNISHED WITH A DECISION AT AN EARLY DATE.

IT HAS BEEN HELD THAT UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF SECTION 8 OF THE SELECTIVE TRAINING AND SERVICE ACT APPROVED SEPTEMBER 16, 1940, AND SECTION 3 OF PUBLIC RESOLUTION NO. 96 OF AUGUST 27, 1940, AS AMENDED (THE LATTER AUTHORIZING THE PRESIDENT TO ORDER RESERVE COMPONENTS OF THE ARMY INTO ACTIVE MILITARY SERVICE), IT IS WITHIN ADMINISTRATIVE DISCRETION EITHER TO SEPARATE FEDERAL EMPLOYEES FROM THE SERVICE, OR TO CARRY THEM ON THE ROLL IN A FURLOUGH OR LEAVE-WITHOUT-PAY STATUS WHILE THEY ARE IN THE MILITARY SERVICE; AND THAT THE RIGHTS OR BENEFITS OF THE EMPLOYEES UNDER THE SAID SECTION 3, AS AMENDED, UPON RESTORATION OR RETURN TO ACTIVE CIVILIAN DUTY, WOULD BE THE SAME WHETHER THEY BE SEPARATED OR FURLOUGHED WITHOUT PAY. COMP. GEN. 158; ID. 167; ID. 776; B-16586, DATED JUNE 3, 1941 (PENULTIMATE PARAGRAPH), 20 ID. 847. IN THE FIRST-CITED DECISION, RENDERED TO THE UNITED STATES CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION, IT WAS FURTHER HELD AS FOLLOWS:

IT IS UNDERSTOOD THAT THE POSITION OF ASSISTANT CHIEF OF THE INVESTIGATIONS DIVISION IS NOT A STATUTORY OFFICE, BUT HAS BEEN ADMINISTRATIVELY CREATED UNDER A LUMP-SUM APPROPRIATION. IF SO, THERE MAY BE ADMINISTRATIVELY CREATED AN ADDITIONAL IDENTICAL POSITION WHICH MAY BE FILLED EITHER BY A TEMPORARY OR PROBATIONAL INDEFINITE APPOINTMENT DURING THE ABSENCE OF THE EMPLOYEE IN QUESTION. SEE 20 COMP. GEN. 9, 12.

THE APPROPRIATION," SALARIES OF INSPECTORS," QUOTED IN YOUR LETTER, PLACES A LIMITATION UPON THE NUMBER OF INSPECTORS THAT MAY BE PAID THEREUNDER. WHILE ORDINARILY, UNDER SUCH A LIMITATION, THERE SHOULD NOT BE EMPLOYED OR BORNE ON THE ROLLS AT ANY ONE TIME A GREATER NUMBER OF EMPLOYEES OF THE CLASS REFERRED TO THAN THE MAXIMUM NUMBER SPECIFIED IN THE APPROPRIATION, SUCH A LIMITATION DOES NOT REQUIRE THE SEPARATION FROM THE POSTAL SERVICE OF THE EMPLOYEES WHO ENTER THE MILITARY SERVICE AS A PREREQUISITE TO THE EMPLOYMENT OF OTHER PERSONS TO TAKE THE PLACE OF THOSE WHO HAVE ENTERED THE MILITARY SERVICE AND ARE IN A NON-PAY STATUS IN THEIR CIVIL POSITIONS. THE PROVISIONS OF THE SELECTIVE TRAINING AND SERVICE ACT AND OF PUBLIC RESOLUTION NO. 96 AND THE DECISIONS HEREINBEFORE WOULD APPEAR TO LEND SUPPORT TO THIS VIEW. HOWEVER, THE SAID LIMITATION DOES PRECLUDE THE CARRYING ON THE ROLLS IN A PAY STATUS AT ANY ONE TIME OF A GREATER NUMBER OF EMPLOYEES OF THE CLASS INVOLVED THAN THE MAXIMUM NUMBER THEREOF MENTIONED IN THE APPROPRIATION.

ACCORDINGLY, THIS OFFICE IS NOT REQUIRED TO OBJECT TO THE EMPLOYMENT PROCEDURE PROPOSED IN YOUR LETTER.