B-51521, AUGUST 17, 1945, 25 COMP. GEN. 192

B-51521: Aug 17, 1945

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TO EXCLUDE SATURDAY CHARGES FOR LEAVES OF ABSENCE WITH PAY IS NOT TO BE REGARDED AS APPLYING IN THE CASE OF EMPLOYEES FOR WHOM A BASIC 40-HOUR WORKWEEK EXCLUSIVE OF SATURDAY IS NOT ESTABLISHED UNDER AUTHORITY OF ANY PROVISION OF SAID ACT. 1945: I HAVE YOUR LETTER OF AUGUST 6. AS FOLLOWS: REFERENCE IS MADE TO DECISION B-93 OF JUNE 5. YOUR PROMPT DECISION WILL BE APPRECIATED AS TO WHETHER UNDER SECTION 6 OF PUBLIC LAW 134. ABSENCES ON ANNUAL AND SICK LEAVE OF THE CLASSES OF EMPLOYEES ENUMERATED IN THE LAST PROVISO OF SECTION 3 OF THE ACT ARE TO BE CHARGED EXCLUSIVELY OF SATURDAYS OR WHETHER THE LEAVE IS CHARGEABLE EXCLUSIVE ONLY OF SUNDAYS AND HOLIDAYS. EMPLOYEES WHO ARE PAID ON A FEE OR CONTRACT BASIS.

B-51521, AUGUST 17, 1945, 25 COMP. GEN. 192

LEAVES OF ABSENCE - POSTAL SERVICE - SATURDAYS IN LINE WITH THE INTERPRETATION OF PRIOR SIMILAR STATUTORY PROVISIONS (18 COMP. GEN. 904; 19 ID. 96), THE AUTHORITY UNDER SECTION 6 OF POSTAL SERVICE PAY STATUTE OF JULY 6, 1945, TO EXCLUDE SATURDAY CHARGES FOR LEAVES OF ABSENCE WITH PAY IS NOT TO BE REGARDED AS APPLYING IN THE CASE OF EMPLOYEES FOR WHOM A BASIC 40-HOUR WORKWEEK EXCLUSIVE OF SATURDAY IS NOT ESTABLISHED UNDER AUTHORITY OF ANY PROVISION OF SAID ACT. (OVERRULED BY 25 COMP. GEN. 412.)

COMPTROLLER GENERAL WARREN TO THE POSTMASTER GENERAL, AUGUST 17, 1945:

I HAVE YOUR LETTER OF AUGUST 6, 1945, REFERENCE 4, AS FOLLOWS:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO DECISION B-93 OF JUNE 5, 1939 (18 COMP. GEN. 904), AND TO SECTIONS 1, 3, AND 6 OF PUBLIC LAW 134, APPROVED JULY 6, 1945, ENTITLED "AN ACT TO RECLASSIFY THE SALARIES OF POSTMASTERS, OFFICERS, AND EMPLOYEES OF THE POSTAL SERVICE; TO ESTABLISH UNIFORM PROCEDURES FOR COMPUTING COMPENSATION; AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES.'

YOUR PROMPT DECISION WILL BE APPRECIATED AS TO WHETHER UNDER SECTION 6 OF PUBLIC LAW 134, SUPRA, ABSENCES ON ANNUAL AND SICK LEAVE OF THE CLASSES OF EMPLOYEES ENUMERATED IN THE LAST PROVISO OF SECTION 3 OF THE ACT ARE TO BE CHARGED EXCLUSIVELY OF SATURDAYS OR WHETHER THE LEAVE IS CHARGEABLE EXCLUSIVE ONLY OF SUNDAYS AND HOLIDAYS.

SO FAR AS HERE MATERIAL SECTIONS 1, 3, 6, 16 (P), AND 20 OF THE ACT OF JULY 6, 1945, 59 STAT. 435, 436, 454, 459, PUBLIC LAW 134, PROVIDE, RESPECTIVELY, AS FOLLOWS:

THAT THE TERM "EMPLOYEES" WHEREVER USED IN THIS ACT SHALL INCLUDE OFFICERS, SUPERVISORS, SPECIAL-DELIVERY MESSENGERS IN OFFICES OF THE FIRST CLASS, AND ALL OTHER EMPLOYEES PAID FROM FIELD APPROPRIATIONS OF THE POSTAL SERVICE, OTHER THAN POSTMASTERS, SKILLED-TRADES EMPLOYEES OF THE MAIL-EQUIPMENT SHOPS, JOB CLEANERS IN FIRST- AND SECOND-CLASS POST OFFICES, AND EMPLOYEES WHO ARE PAID ON A FEE OR CONTRACT BASIS.

SEC. 3. WHEN THE NEEDS OF THE SERVICE REQUIRE EMPLOYEES TO PERFORM SERVICE ON SATURDAYS, SUNDAYS, OR HOLIDAYS, THEY SHALL BE ALLOWED COMPENSATORY TIME FOR SUCH SERVICE ON ONE DAY WITHIN FIVE WORKING DAYS NEXT SUCCEEDING THE SATURDAY OR SUNDAY AND WITHIN THIRTY DAYS NEXT SUCCEEDING THE HOLIDAY * * * AND PROVIDED FURTHER, THAT THE PROVISIONS OF THIS SECTION SHALL NOT APPLY TO EMPLOYEES OF THE RAILWAY MAIL SERVICE AND THE AIR MAIL SERVICE; POST-OFFICE INSPECTORS; RURAL CARRIERS; TRAVELING MECHANICIANS; EXAMINERS OF EQUIPMENT AND SUPPLIES; CLERKS IN THIRD-CLASS OFFICES; AND EMPLOYEES PAID ON AN HOURLY BASIS.

SEC. 6. POSTMASTERS AND EMPLOYEES SHALL BE GRANTED FIFTEEN DAYS' LEAVE OF ABSENCE WITH PAY, EXCLUSIVE OF SATURDAYS, SUNDAYS, AND HOLIDAYS, EACH FISCAL YEAR AND SICK LEAVE WITH PAY AT THE RATE OF TEN DAYS A YEAR, EXCLUSIVE OF SATURDAYS, SUNDAYS, AND HOLIDAYS, TO BE CUMULATIVE. SICK LEAVE SHALL BE GRANTED ONLY UPON SATISFACTORY EVIDENCE OF ILLNESS IN ACCORDANCE WITH REGULATIONS TO BE PRESCRIBED BY THE POSTMASTER GENERAL: PROVIDED, THAT THE FIFTEEN DAYS' LEAVE SHALL BE CREDITED AT THE RATE OF ONE AND ONE-QUARTER DAYS FOR EACH MONTH OF ACTUAL SERVICE * * * .

SEC. 16. * * *

(P) WHEN THE NEEDS OF THE SERVICE REQUIRE EMPLOYEES OF THE RAILWAY MAIL AND AIR MAIL SERVICES, OTHER THAN RAILWAY POSTAL CLERKS ASSIGNED TO ROAD DUTY AND OFFICERS, TO PERFORM SERVICE ON SATURDAYS, SUNDAYS, OR HOLIDAYS THEY SHALL BE ALLOWED COMPENSATORY TIME FOR SUCH SERVICE WITHIN FIVE WORKING DAYS NEXT SUCCEEDING THE SATURDAY OR SUNDAY, AND ON ONE DAY WITHIN THIRTY DAYS NEXT SUCCEEDING THE HOLIDAY * * * .

SEC. 20. DURING THE PERIOD OF HOSTILITIES WITH JAPAN AND FOR NOT MORE THAN THIRTY DAYS THEREAFTER, WHEN THE NEEDS OF THE SERVICE REQUIRE POSTMASTERS OF THE FIRST, SECOND, AND THIRD CLASSES, POST OFFICE INSPECTORS, TRAVELING MECHANICIANS, EXAMINERS OF EQUIPMENT AND SUPPLIES, AND OFFICERS OF THE RAILWAY MAIL AND AIR MAIL SERVICES, 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 * * * .

THE DECISION OF JUNE 5, 1939, 18 COMP. GEN. 904, TO WHICH YOU REFER, HELD AS FOLLOWS (QUOTING FROM THE SYLLABUS):

THE ACT OF MAY 15, 1939, PUBLIC NO. 78, 53 STAT. 745,"GRANTING POSTAL EMPLOYEES CREDIT FOR SATURDAY IN ANNUAL AND SICK LEAVE LAW, THEREBY CONFORMING TO THE 40-HOUR WORKWEEK OR 5-DAY-WEEK LAW," DOES NOT AUTHORIZE THE EXCLUSION OF SATURDAYS IN COMPUTING THE ANNUAL AND SICK LEAVE OF RURAL CARRIERS WHO, WHEN NOT ON LEAVE, ARE REQUIRED TO WORK ON SATURDAYS, AND LEAVE OF ABSENCE OF SUCH EMPLOYEES SHOULD CONTINUE TO BE CHARGED AS EXCLUSIVE OF ONLY SUNDAYS AND HOLIDAYS. SEE, ALSO, 19 COMP. GEN. 96.

THE ABOVE QUOTED PORTIONS OF THE ACT OF JULY 6, 1945, APPEAR TO HAVE THE SAME FORCE AND EFFECT AS THEIR PREDECESSOR STATUTES WHICH WERE CONSIDERED AND APPLIED IN THE CITED DECISIONS. HENCE, THE REASONS UNDERLYING THE HOLDINGS IN THOSE DECISIONS WOULD APPLY WITH EQUAL FORCE UNDER THE NEW STATUTE. STATED IN OTHER WORDS, THE AUTHORITY FOR EXCLUDING SATURDAY FROM CHARGES FOR LEAVE OF ABSENCE WITH PAY PURSUANT TO SECTION 6 OF THE NEW STATUTE APPEARS INTENDED TO APPLY ONLY TO EMPLOYEES WHO REGULARLY ARE NOT REQUIRED TO WORK ON SATURDAY AS A PART OF THEIR BASIC WORKWEEK EXCLUSIVE OF OVERTIME--- THE ONLY PERIOD FOR WHICH LEAVE IS CHARGEABLE--- UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF THE NEW STATUTE.

WHILE THE LAST PROVISO TO SECTION 3 OF THE NEW STATUTE, TO WHICH YOU REFER, APPEARS TO EXCLUDE ALL EMPLOYEES OF THE RAILWAY MAIL SERVICE AND AIR MAIL SERVICE FROM THE 40-HOUR-WEEK PROVISION OF THAT SECTION, NEVERTHELESS, SECTION 16 (P) APPEARS TO PROVIDE AUTHORITY FOR ESTABLISHING A 40-HOUR BASIC WORKWEEK FOR EMPLOYEES OF THOSE SERVICES "OTHER THAN RAILWAY POSTAL CLERKS ASSIGNED TO ROAD DUTY AND OFFICERS.' ALSO, SECTION 20 OF THE NEW STATUTE APPEARS TO AUTHORIZE THE ESTABLISHMENT OF A 40-HOUR BASIC WORKWEEK DURING THE PERIOD OF HOSTILITIES WITH JAPAN AND NOT MORE THAN THIRTY DAYS THEREAFTER, FOR CERTAIN OTHER CLASSES OF EMPLOYEES EXCLUDED FROM THE CORRESPONDING PROVISIONS OF SECTION 3 OF THE STATUTE BY THE LAST PROVISO THEREOF. THEREFORE, NEITHER OF THE ALTERNATE QUESTIONS PRESENTED MAY BE ANSWERED SPECIFICALLY OTHER THAN TO SAY THAT UNDER THE RULE STATED IN THE CITED DECISIONS OF THIS OFFICE, SUPRA, LEAVE SHOULD NOT BE CHARGED FOR ABSENCE ON SATURDAY IN THE CASE OF ANY OFFICER OR EMPLOYEE FOR WHOM A 40-HOUR BASIC WORKWEEK EXCLUSIVE OF SATURDAY IS ESTABLISHED UNDER AUTHORITY OF ANY PROVISION OF THE LAW, BUT LEAVE SHOULD BE CHARGED FOR ABSENCE ON SATURDAY FOR ANY EMPLOYEE FOR WHOM A 40-HOUR BASIC WORKWEEK EXCLUSIVE OF SATURDAY IS NOT ESTABLISHED UNDER AUTHORITY OF ANY PROVISION OF THE LAW.