B-39390, JANUARY 25, 1944, 23 COMP. GEN. 538

B-39390: Jan 25, 1944

Additional Materials:

Contact:

Edda Emmanuelli Perez
(202) 512-2853
EmmanuelliPerezE@gao.gov

 

Office of Public Affairs
(202) 512-4800
youngc1@gao.gov

WHO ARE REQUIRED REGULARLY TO WORK 48 HOURS A WEEK. PROVIDED THEY WERE IN A PAY STATUS ON FRIDAY. 1944: I HAVE YOUR LETTER OF JANUARY 3. AS FOLLOWS: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR DECISION OF DECEMBER 8. YOUR OFFICE HELD THAT THE EMPLOYEES WITH RESPECT TO WHOM THE DECISION WAS RENDERED MIGHT BE PAID STRAIGHT TIME PAY FOR CHRISTMAS DAY. PROVIDED THEY WERE IN A DUTY OR PAY STATUS ON FRIDAY. YOUR DECISION WAS PREDICATED IN PART UPON THE FINDING THAT. - "* * * THEIR OVERTIME WORK IS PERFORMED ON A SPECIFIED DAY RATHER THAN PRORATED AS IS THE CASE WITH PER ANNUM AND MONTHLY EMPLOYEES PAID UNDER THE WAR OVERTIME PAY ACT OF 1943.'. THE OVERTIME PAY FOR SATURDAYS OF PER ANNUM EMPLOYEES IN THE MAIL EQUIPMENT SHOPS IS NOT THE SAME AS THAT OF EMPLOYEES PAID UNDER THE WAR OVERTIME PAY ACT OF 1943 AND IS NOT PRORATED OVER THE YEAR.

B-39390, JANUARY 25, 1944, 23 COMP. GEN. 538

HOLIDAY COMPENSATION - PER ANNUM EMPLOYEES OF POST OFFICE MAIL EQUIPMENT SHOPS PER ANNUM EMPLOYEES OF THE POST OFFICE MAIL EQUIPMENT SHOPS WITHIN THE PURVIEW OF 39 U.S.C. 832, WHICH VESTS IN THE POSTMASTER GENERAL A DISCRETION TO AUTHORIZE PAYMENT OF OVERTIME COMPENSATION IN LIEU OF GRANTING COMPENSATORY TIME FOR WORK PERFORMED ON SATURDAYS, WHO ARE REQUIRED REGULARLY TO WORK 48 HOURS A WEEK, MONDAY THROUGH SATURDAY, MAY BE PAID THEIR REGULAR COMPENSATION FOR CHRISTMAS DAY, 1943--- A SATURDAY-- - ON WHICH DAY THEY DID NOT WORK, PROVIDED THEY WERE IN A PAY STATUS ON FRIDAY, DECEMBER 24, 1943, AND ON MONDAY, DECEMBER 27, 1943.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL WARREN TO THE POSTMASTER GENERAL, JANUARY 25, 1944:

I HAVE YOUR LETTER OF JANUARY 3, 1944, AS FOLLOWS:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR DECISION OF DECEMBER 8, 1943, B-38663, TO THE SECRETARY OF WAR, REGARDING THE PAY OF PER DIEM EMPLOYEES FOR SATURDAY, DECEMBER 25, 1943. YOUR OFFICE HELD THAT THE EMPLOYEES WITH RESPECT TO WHOM THE DECISION WAS RENDERED MIGHT BE PAID STRAIGHT TIME PAY FOR CHRISTMAS DAY, PROVIDED THEY WERE IN A DUTY OR PAY STATUS ON FRIDAY, DECEMBER 24, AND ON MONDAY, DECEMBER 27, 1943. YOUR DECISION WAS PREDICATED IN PART UPON THE FINDING THAT---

"* * * THEIR OVERTIME WORK IS PERFORMED ON A SPECIFIED DAY RATHER THAN PRORATED AS IS THE CASE WITH PER ANNUM AND MONTHLY EMPLOYEES PAID UNDER THE WAR OVERTIME PAY ACT OF 1943.'

THE OVERTIME PAY FOR SATURDAYS OF PER ANNUM EMPLOYEES IN THE MAIL EQUIPMENT SHOPS IS NOT THE SAME AS THAT OF EMPLOYEES PAID UNDER THE WAR OVERTIME PAY ACT OF 1943 AND IS NOT PRORATED OVER THE YEAR, BUT IS CONTINGENT UPON THEIR WORKING ON THAT DAY. IN OTHER WORDS, A PER ANNUM EMPLOYEE IS PAID ONE EXTRA DAY'S PAY FOR WORK ON SATURDAY THE SAME AS A PER DIEM EMPLOYEE AND, THEREFORE, IS IN THE SAME CLASS IN SO FAR AS PAY FOR THIS HOLIDAY IS CONCERNED. IF EITHER A PER DIEM OR PER ANNUM EMPLOYEE IS ABSENT ON SATURDAY, THEIR OVERTIME PAY MUST BE DEDUCTED.

IN VIEW OF THE FACT THAT THE MAIL EQUIPMENT SHOPS WERE CLOSED ON SATURDAY, DECEMBER 25TH, YOUR DECISION IS REQUESTED WHETHER THE EMPLOYEES OF THE SHOPS (EITHER PER DIEM, PER ANNUM, OR BOTH) MAY BE PAID FOR THAT DAY.

YOUR DECISION IS ALSO REQUESTED AS TO THE PROCEDURE TO BE FOLLOWED WITH REGARD TO PAY FOR THESE EMPLOYEES FOR SATURDAY, JANUARY 1, 1944, IF THE SHOPS SHOULD BE CLOSED ON THAT DAY.

SECTION 832, TITLE 39, U.S. CODE, PROVIDES, SO FAR AS HERE MATERIAL, AS FOLLOWS:

WHEN THE NEEDS OF THE SERVICE REQUIRE * * * EMPLOYEES OF THE MAIL EQUIPMENT SHOPS * * * TO PERFORM SERVICE ON SATURDAY THEY SHALL BE ALLOWED COMPENSATORY TIME FOR SUCH SERVICE ON ONE DAY WITHIN FIVE WORKING DAYS NEXT SUCCEEDING THE SATURDAY ON WHICH THE EXCESS SERVICE WAS PERFORMED. PROVIDED, THAT EMPLOYEES WHO ARE GRANTED COMPENSATORY TIME ON SATURDAY FOR WORK PERFORMED THE PRECEDING SUNDAY OR THE PRECEDING HOLIDAY SHALL BE GIVEN THE BENEFITS OF THIS SECTION ON ONE DAY WITHIN FIVE WORKING DAYS FOLLOWING THE SATURDAY WHEN SUCH COMPENSATORY TIME WAS GRANTED: PROVIDED FURTHER, THAT THE POSTMASTER GENERAL MAY, IF THE EXIGENCIES OF THE SERVICE REQUIRE IT, AUTHORIZE THE PAYMENT OF OVERTIME FOR SATURDAYS IN LIEU OF COMPENSATORY TIME, EXCEPT CLEANERS, JANITORS, TELEPHONE OPERATORS, AND ELEVATOR CONDUCTORS PAID FROM THE APPROPRIATION OF THE FIRST ASSISTANT POSTMASTER GENERAL, AND CUSTODIAL EMPLOYEES WHO SHALL BE GIVEN COMPENSATORY TIME IN LIEU OF OVERTIME PAY WITHIN 30 DAYS NEXT SUCCEEDING *

THE EMPLOYEES OF THE MAIL EQUIPMENT SHOPS DO NOT FALL WITHIN THE PURVIEW OF 39 U.S.C. 118, AUTHORIZING THE GRANTING OF COMPENSATORY TIME OFF FROM DUTY FOR WORK PERFORMED ON HOLIDAYS. COMPARE DECISION OF DECEMBER 31, 1943, B-39044, 23 COMP. GEN. 475, TO YOU.

IN THE DECISION OF OCTOBER 19, 1935, 15 COMP. GEN. 308, 310, RENDERED AT A TIME WHEN THE STATUTORY PROVISION ABOVE QUOTED DID NOT CONTAIN A PROVISO AUTHORIZING THE GRANTING OF OVERTIME COMPENSATION (ONE DAY'S EXTRA COMPENSATION) FOR WORK PERFORMED ON SATURDAYS, IT WAS HELD AS OLLOWS:

THERE IS NO CONFLICT BETWEEN SECTION 23 OF THE ACT OF MARCH 28, 1934 (48 STAT. 522), ESTABLISHING THE 40-HOUR WEEK FOR CERTAIN EMPLOYEES IN THE SEVERAL TRADES AND CRAFTS, AND THE ACT OF AUGUST 14, 1935, SUPRA, ESTABLISHING A 40-HOUR WEEK FOR POSTAL EMPLOYEES. HENCE, THE FIRST- MENTIONED STATUTE REMAINS APPLICABLE TO THE 21 EMPLOYEES OF THE MAIL EQUIPMENT SHOPS PROPERLY WITHIN ITS TERMS, AND THE LAST MENTIONED STATUTE IS APPLICABLE TO ALL OTHER EMPLOYEES OF THE MAIL EQUIPMENT SHOPS. HOWEVER, THE DIFFERENCE IN THE EFFECT OF THE TWO STATUTES ON THE COMPENSATION OF THE TWO CLASSES OF EMPLOYEES IS VERY MARKED. THE EARLIER LAW NOT ONLY REDUCED THE HOURS OF WORK OF THE EMPLOYEES COMING WITHIN ITS TERMS FROM 44 TO 40 HOURS PER WEEK BUT IN ADDITION SPECIFICALLY AUTHORIZED AND REQUIRED THE PAYMENT OF FULL WEEKLY EARNINGS OF SUCH EMPLOYEES IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE "FULL-TIME WEEKLY EARNINGS UNDER THE RESPECTIVE WAGE SCHEDULES IN EFFECT ON JUNE 1, 1932," WHICH HAD THE EFFECT OF AUTHORIZING 6 DAYS' COMPENSATION FOR 5 DAYS' WORK PER WEEK. THE LATER LAW APPLICABLE TO POSTAL EMPLOYEES HAS THE EFFECT OF REDUCING THE HOURS OF WORK FROM 44 TO 40 PER WEEK, BUT HAS NO EFFECT WHATEVER ON RATE OF COMPENSATION. SATURDAY IS MADE A NONWORKDAY THE SAME AS SUNDAY. THE COMPENSATION OF POSTAL EMPLOYEES PAID ON AN ANNUAL BASIS FOR EVERY DAY IN THE YEAR, IF IN AN ACTIVE DUTY STATUS EVERY WORKDAY OF THE YEAR, IS NEITHER INCREASED NOR DECREASED; THAT IS, SUCH EMPLOYEES CONTINUE TO BE ENTITLED TO COMPENSATION FOR SATURDAYS WHETHER WORK IS OR IS NOT PERFORMED ON THAT DAY, BUT POSTAL EMPLOYEES WHO ARE PAID ON A PER DIEM OR PER HOUR BASIS, MAY NOT BE PAID FOR SATURDAYS ON WHICH NO WORK IS PERFORMED ANY MORE THAN THEY CAN BE PAID FOR SUNDAYS ON WHICH NO WORK IS PERFORMED. * * * COMPARE 21 COMP. GEN. 318.

THE PROVISO AUTHORIZING THE PAYMENT OF OVERTIME COMPENSATION TO POSTAL EMPLOYEES, INCLUDING EMPLOYEES OF THE MAIL EQUIPMENT SHOPS, FOR WORK ON SATURDAYS IN LIEU OF GRANTING THEM COMPENSATORY TIME OFF FROM DUTY (SEE 22 COMP. GEN. 1057) WAS ADDED TO THE LAW BY THE AMENDATORY STATUTE OF MARCH 27, 1942, 56 STAT. 188, BUT WHICH PROVIDES THAT: " THIS AMENDMENT SHALL BE IN EFFECT ONLY DURING THE PRESENT WAR AND FOR SIX MONTHS THEREAFTER" INDICATING CLEARLY--- THAT THE LEGISLATION WAS INTENDED AS A WAR MEASURE BECAUSE OF THE NECESSITY OF REQUIRING EMPLOYEES TO WORK LONGER HOURS EACH WEEK.

IT IS UNDERSTOOD THAT PURSUANT TO REQUESTS MADE BY THE PRESIDENT WITH REGARD TO ALL FEDERAL PERSONNEL, THE WORKWEEK OF EMPLOYEES OF THE MAIL EQUIPMENT SHOPS IS 48 HOURS PER WEEK OF SIX DAYS INCLUDING SATURDAYS, AND THAT ALL HOLIDAYS EXCEPT CHRISTMAS ARE CONSIDERED WORKDAYS FOR SUCH FEDERAL EMPLOYEES FOR THE DURATION OF THE WAR.

IN VIEW OF THE ABOVE CONSIDERATIONS, AND AS PER ANNUM EMPLOYEES GENERALLY THROUGHOUT THE FEDERAL SERVICE WHO COME WITHIN THE PURVIEW OF THE WAR OVERTIME PAY ACT OF 1943, 57 STAT. 76--- PROVIDING A FORMULA FOR PAYING OVERTIME COMPENSATION IN EXCESS OF 40 HOURS PER WEEK WHICH, ALSO, IS THE REGULAR TOUR OF DUTY OF EMPLOYEES OF THE MAIL EQUIPMENT SHOPS--- DID NOT LOSE THEIR REGULAR COMPENSATION PLUS OVERTIME FOR THE WEEK WHICH INCLUDED CHRISTMAS DAY, 1943, ALTHOUGH NO WORK WAS PERFORMED ON THAT DAY, AND IN THE LIGHT OF THE RULING MADE IN THE DECISION OF DECEMBER 8, 1943, B-38663, 23 COMP. GEN. 415, WITH REGARD TO PER DIEM EMPLOYEES, TO WHICH DECISION YOU REFER, IT IS CONCLUDED THAT THE PER ANNUM EMPLOYEES OF THE MAIL EQUIPMENT SHOPS MAY BE PAID THEIR REGULAR COMPENSATION FOR CHRISTMAS DAY, 1943, ON WHICH DAY THEY DID NOT WORK, PROVIDED THEY WERE IN A PAY STATUS ON FRIDAY, DECEMBER 24, 1943, AND ON MONDAY, DECEMBER 27, 1943.

THIS OFFICE HAS BEEN ADVISED INFORMALLY THAT THE MAIL EQUIPMENT SHOPS WERE NOT CLOSED JANUARY 1, 1944, BUT THAT THE EMPLOYEES WORKED ON THAT DAY. HENCE, NO CONSIDERATION NEED BE GIVEN TO THE PENULTIMATE PARAGRAPH OF YOUR LETTER.