B-79103, AUGUST 26, 1948, 28 COMP. GEN. 129

B-79103: Aug 26, 1948

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IN THE CASE OF POSTAL SERVICE EMPLOYEES TRANSFERRED FROM POSITIONS FOR WHICH AUTOMATIC PROMOTIONS ARE PROVIDED TO OTHER POSITIONS IN THE SERVICE. - A POSITION FOR WHICH AUTOMATIC PROMOTIONS ARE NOT PROVIDED IN SECTION 14 (A) OF THE ACT OF JULY 6. - WHO WAS TRANSFERRED TO THE POSITION OF ASSISTANT ENGINEER AT THE MAXIMUM AUTOMATIC SALARY GRADE WOULD BE ENTITLED. A TEMPORARY CHARMAN OF THE POSTAL SERVICE COMPENSATED AT AN HOURLY RATE WHO WAS PROMOTED TO THE POSITION OF TEMPORARY FIREMAN-LABORER AT AN ANNUAL SALARY. IS ENTITLED BY VIRTUE OF THE PROVISIONS OF THE ACT OF JUNE 19. WHO WAS PROMOTED TO FIREMAN-LABORER UNDER SECTION 14 (H) OF THE ACT. - IS ENTITLED. A POSTAL SERVICE EMPLOYEE IN THE MOTOR VEHICLE SERVICE WHO WAS TRANSFERRED FROM THE POSITION OF SPECIAL CLERK TO THAT OF DISPATCHER AT THE MAXIMUM AUTOMATIC SALARY GRADE WITHOUT ANY CHANGE IN GRADE OR SALARY.

B-79103, AUGUST 26, 1948, 28 COMP. GEN. 129

COMPENSATION - POSTAL SERVICE - AUTOMATIC PROMOTIONS - SERVICE CREDITS UNDER SECTION 1 OF THE ACT OF JUNE 19, 1948, AUTHORIZING, IN THE CASE OF POSTAL SERVICE EMPLOYEES TRANSFERRED FROM POSITIONS FOR WHICH AUTOMATIC PROMOTIONS ARE PROVIDED TO OTHER POSITIONS IN THE SERVICE, THE COUNTING OF ALL PROPER SATISFACTORY SERVICE TOWARD AUTOMATIC PROMOTION IN THE POSITIONS TO WHICH TRANSFERRED, A CLASSIFIED LABORER WHO HAD REACHED THE MAXIMUM GRADE OF HIS POSITION BY VIRTUE OF AUTOMATIC PROMOTIONS AUTHORIZED BY SECTION 14 (I) OF THE ACT OF JULY 1, 1945, AND THEREAFTER HAD SERVED TWO YEARS IN SUCH GRADE BECAME ENTITLED TO TWO ADDITIONAL GRADES WHEN TRANSFERRED TO THE POSITION OF MECHANIC HELPER UNDER SECTION 13 (D) OF THE 1945 ACT. A POSTAL SERVICE EMPLOYEE HOLDING THE SUPERVISORY POSITION OF WATCH ENGINEER--- A POSITION FOR WHICH AUTOMATIC PROMOTIONS ARE NOT PROVIDED IN SECTION 14 (A) OF THE ACT OF JULY 6, 1945--- WHO WAS TRANSFERRED TO THE POSITION OF ASSISTANT ENGINEER AT THE MAXIMUM AUTOMATIC SALARY GRADE WOULD BE ENTITLED, UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF SECTION 1 OF THE ACT OF JUNE 19, 1948, TO COUNT ONLY ONE YEAR OF SATISFACTORY SERVICE AS WATCH ENGINEER TOWARD ADVANCEMENT TO THE APPLICABLE ADDITIONAL MERITORIOUS GRADE AUTHORIZED IN SECTION 14 (E) OF THE 1945 ACT. A TEMPORARY CHARMAN OF THE POSTAL SERVICE COMPENSATED AT AN HOURLY RATE WHO WAS PROMOTED TO THE POSITION OF TEMPORARY FIREMAN-LABORER AT AN ANNUAL SALARY--- SUCH ACTION NOT CONSTITUTING AN AUTOMATIC PROMOTION -- IS ENTITLED BY VIRTUE OF THE PROVISIONS OF THE ACT OF JUNE 19, 1948, TO CREDIT FOR AUTOMATIC PROMOTION IN THE CLASSIFICATION AS TEMPORARY FIREMAN- LABORER FOR SATISFACTORY SERVICE SINCE THE DATE OF THE EMPLOYEE'S APPOINTMENT AS TEMPORARY CHARMAN. A POSTAL SERVICE EMPLOYEE APPOINTED AS A PROBATIONAL LABORER OF THE CUSTODIAL SERVICE UNDER SECTION 14 (I) OF THE ACT OF JULY 6, 1945, WHO WAS PROMOTED TO FIREMAN-LABORER UNDER SECTION 14 (H) OF THE ACT--- SUCH ACTION NOT CONSTITUTING AN AUTOMATIC PROMOTION--- IS ENTITLED, UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF SECTION 1 OF THE ACT OF JUNE 19, 1948, TO CREDIT FOR ALL SATISFACTORY SERVICE FROM THE DATE OF PROBATIONAL APPOINTMENT TOWARD AUTOMATIC GRADE ADVANCES IN HIS CLASSIFICATION AS FIREMAN LABORER. A POSTAL SERVICE EMPLOYEE IN THE MOTOR VEHICLE SERVICE WHO WAS TRANSFERRED FROM THE POSITION OF SPECIAL CLERK TO THAT OF DISPATCHER AT THE MAXIMUM AUTOMATIC SALARY GRADE WITHOUT ANY CHANGE IN GRADE OR SALARY-- - BOTH POSITIONS BEING UNDER SECTION 13 (B) OF THE ACT OF JULY 6, 1945, PROVIDING FOR AUTOMATIC PROMOTIONS--- IS ENTITLED, PURSUANT TO THE PROVISIONS OF THE ACT OF JUNE 19, 1948, TO CREDIT FOR ALL SATISFACTORY SERVICE SINCE HIS LAST AUTOMATIC PROMOTION TOWARD ADVANCEMENT TO THE APPLICABLE ADDITIONAL MERITORIOUS GRADE, PROVIDED HE IS IN A FIRST-CLASS POST OFFICE. A POSTAL SERVICE EMPLOYEE OF THE MOTOR VEHICLE SERVICE WHO WAS DEMOTED FROM DRIVE-MECHANIC TO GARAGEMAN-DRIVER BECAUSE OF UNSATISFACTORY SERVICE AND WHO SUBSEQUENTLY TRANSFERRED TO THE POSITION OF DISPATCHER UNDER SECTION 13 (C) OF THE ACT OF JULY 6, 1945, IS ENTITLED BY VIRTUE OF THE PROVISIONS OF THE ACT OF JUNE 19, 1948, TO COUNT ONLY THE PERIOD OF SATISFACTORY SERVICE BEGINNING AFTER THE PERIOD OF UNSATISFACTORY SERVICE TOWARD PLACEMENT IN THE APPLICABLE AUTOMATIC SALARY GRADE IN THE POSITION OF DISPATCHER. 27 COMP. GEN. AMPLIFIED.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL WARREN TO THE POSTMASTER GENERAL, AUGUST 26, 1948:

I HAVE YOUR LETTER OF AUGUST 3, 1948, REQUESTING A DECISION WITH RESPECT TO THE APPLICATION OF SECTION 1 OF THE ACT OF JUNE 19, 1948, PUBLIC LAW 674, TO SIX EMPLOYEES OF THE POSTAL SERVICE UNDER THE CONDITIONS THEREIN STATED.

SECTION 1 OF THE ACT OF JUNE 19, 1948, PUBLIC LAW 674, 62 STAT. 484, PROVIDES:

THAT ANY EMPLOYEE OF THE POSTAL SERVICE WHO IS IN A POSITION FOR WHICH SALARY GRADES ARE PROVIDED IN THE ACT ENTITLED " AN ACT TO RECLASSIFY THE SALARIES OF POSTMASTER, OFFICERS, AND EMPLOYEES OF THE POSTAL SERVICE; TO ESTABLISH UNIFORM PROCEDURES FOR COMPUTING COMPENSATION; AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES," APPROVED JULY 6, 1945, AND WHO TRANSFERS OR IS TRANSFERRED FROM SUCH POSITION TO ANY OTHER POSITION IN THE POSTAL SERVICE FOR WHICH SALARY GRADES ARE PROVIDED BY SUCH ACT, SHALL, FOR PURPOSES OF ESTABLISHING ELIGIBILITY FOR PROMOTION IN THE POSITION TO WHICH HE TRANSFERS OR IS TRANSFERRED, (1) IN THE CASE OF AN EMPLOYEE IN A POSITION FOR WHICH AUTOMATIC PROMOTIONS ARE PROVIDED, BE CREDITED WITH ALL SATISFACTORY SERVICE SINCE HIS LAST AUTOMATIC PROMOTION AND (2) IN THE CASE OF AN EMPLOYEE IN A POSITION FOR WHICH AUTOMATIC PROMOTION ARE NOT PROVIDED, BE CREDITED WITH ALL SATISFACTORY SERVICE, NOT EXCEEDING ONE YEAR OF SUCH SERVICE, PERFORMED IN SUCH POSITION.

THE QUESTIONS WILL BE QUOTED AND ANSWERED IN THE ORDER PRESENTED.

1. AN EMPLOYEE IN THE CUSTODIAL SERVICE ON JULY 1, 1946 WAS GIVEN AN AUTOMATIC PROMOTION TO GRADE 7, $2300 PER ANNUM, IN HIS POSITION OF LABORER, IN ACCORDANCE WITH SECTION 14 OF PUBLIC LAW 134--- 79TH CONGRESS, AS AMENDED. THIS WAS THE MAXIMUM GRADE OF THE POSITION. ON JULY 1, 1948, HE WAS TRANSFERRED TO MECHANIC-HELPER AT GRADE 4, $2300 PER ANNUM, THE SALARY FOR WHICH BECAME $2750 PER ANNUM UNDER PUBLIC LAW 900--- 80TH CONGRESS.

INASMUCH AS HIS LAST AUTOMATIC INCREASE WAS ON JULY 1, 1946, AND HE HAS, THEREFORE, SERVED TWO YEARS SINCE HIS LAST AUTOMATIC PROMOTION, IS THIS EMPLOYEE ENTITLED TO TWO GRADES ADDITIONAL EFFECTIVE JULY 1, 1948?

AS SECTION 14 (I) OF THE POSTAL EMPLOYEES PAY ACT OF 1945, PUBLIC LAW 134, 59 STAT. 449, UNDER WHICH THIS EMPLOYEE WAS CLASSIFIED AS A LABORER, PROVIDES FOR AUTOMATIC PROMOTIONS AT THE BEGINNING OF THE QUARTER FOLLOWING ONE YEARS'S SATISFACTORY SERVICE IN EACH GRADE, THIS EMPLOYEE BECAME ENTITLED, UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF SECTION 1 OF PUBLIC LAW 674, SUPRA, TO TWO ADDITIONAL GRADES WHEN TRANSFERRED TO THE POSITION OF MECHANIC HELPER UNDER SECTION 13 (D) OF THE POSTAL EMPLOYEES PAY ACT, 59 STAT. 446.

2. ON APRIL 1, 1945, A CUSTODIAL EMPLOYEE HOLDING THE POSITION OF ENGINE MAN WAS GIVEN AN AUTOMATIC PROMOTION TO $2400 PER ANNUM UNDER PUBLIC LAW 406--- 78TH CONGRESS. HE OCCUPIED THE POSITION OF ENGINE MAN ONLY TEMPORARILY BECAUSE IT WAS A MILITARY VACANCY. ON JULY 1, 1945, THE POSITION AND SALARY WAS CHANGED TO WATCH ENGINEER AT $3200 PER ANNUM AND HE WAS PLACED IN THE SUPERVISORY GRADES IN ACCORDANCE WITH PUBLIC LAW 134. ON JANUARY 1, 1946, HIS RATE OF PAY WAS CHANGED TO $3600 PER ANNUM BECAUSE OF THE PASSAGE OF PUBLIC LAW 386--- 79TH CONGRESS, AND ON APRIL 1, 1946, HE WAS TRANSFERRED TO THE POSITION OF ASSISTANT ENGINE MAN IN GRADE 7 AT $2900 PER ANNUM, THE MAXIMUM AUTOMATIC GRADE, DUE TO THE RETURN OF THE REGULAR WATCH ENGINEER FROM MILITARY FURLOUGH.

IS THIS EMPLOYEE ENTITLED TO RECEIVE CREDIT FOR ALL SATISFACTORY SERVICE PERFORMED SINCE HIS LAST AUTOMATIC PROMOTION, WHICH WAS APRIL 1, 1945, FOR PROMOTION TO GRADE 8 IN HIS PRESENT POSITION OF ASSISTANT ENGINE MAN? NOT, IS HE ENTITLED TO CREDIT FOR ANY SATISFACTORY SERVICE RENDERED SINCE APRIL 1, 1945?

WHILE GRADE 7 IN THE CLASSIFICATION OF ASSISTANT ENGINE MAN UNDER SECTION 14 (E) OF PUBLIC LAW 134, 59 STAT. 448, IS THE MAXIMUM SALARY GRADE GENERALLY IN THAT CLASSIFICATION, SAID SECTION PROVIDES FURTHER:

* * * PROVIDED, THAT FOR SUCH CUSTODIAL EMPLOYEES AT POST OFFICES OF THE FIRST CLASS THERE SHALL BE TWO ADDITIONAL GRADES; THAT IS, GRADE 8, $2,600, AND GRADE 9, $2,700, AND THAT EMPLOYEES WHO PERFORM FAITHFUL AND MERITORIOUS SERVICE SHALL BE PROMOTED TO GRADE 8 AFTER THREE YEARS OF SUCH SERVICE IN GRADE 7, AND SHALL BE PROMOTED TO GRADE 9 AFTER FIVE YEARS OF SUCH SERVICE IN GRADE 8.

AS THE POSITION OF WATCH ENGINEER, UNDER SECTION 14 (A) OF PUBLIC LAW 134, 59 STAT. 446--- FROM WHICH THE EMPLOYEE LAST WAS TRANSFERRED-- IS A POSITION FOR WHICH AUTOMATIC PROMOTIONS ARE NOT PROVIDED, THIS EMPLOYEE WOULD BE LIMITED, UNDER SECTION 1 OF PUBLIC LAW 674, TO CREDIT FOR ONLY ONE YEAR OF SATISFACTORY SERVICE PERFORMED AS WATCH ENGINEER TOWARD ADVANCEMENT FROM GRADE 7 TO GRADE 8 AS ASSISTANT ENGINE MAN.

E. UNDER PUBLIC LAW 684--- 80TH CONGRESS, WHICH BECAME EFFECTIVE JULY 1, 1948, TEMPORARY EMPLOYEES IN THE CUSTODIAL SERVICE BECAME ELIGIBLE FOR AUTOMATIC PROMOTIONS IN THE SAME MANNER AS REGULAR EMPLOYEES. WE HAVE FOR CONSIDERATION THE CASE OF A CUSTODIAL EMPLOYEE WHO WAS APPOINTED TEMPORARY CHARMAN FOR 38 HOURS PER WEEK AT GRADE 1, 85 CENTS PER HOUR, ON JANUARY 16, 1947. ON SEPTEMBER 15, 1947, HE WAS PROMOTED, STILL IN A TEMPORARY STATUS, TO THE POSITION OF FIREMAN LABORER AT GRADE 1 OF THE POSITION, $1,800 PER ANNUM. THIS RATE WAS CHANGED TO $2,250 EFFECTIVE JULY 1, 1948, IN ACCORDANCE WITH PUBLIC LAW 900--- 80TH CONGRESS.

IS THIS EMPLOYEE ENTITLED UNDER PUBLIC LAW 674 TO CREDIT FOR HIS FIRST AUTOMATIC PROMOTION FOR SATISFACTORY SERVICE BEGINNING WITH JANUARY 16, 1947 OR SEPTEMBER 15. 1947?

PRIOR TO JULY 1, 1948, TEMPORARY EMPLOYEES IN THE CUSTODIAL SERVICE WERE CONFINED TO THE RATES OF PAY OF GRADE 1 PROVIDED FOR REGULAR CUSTODIAL EMPLOYEES. HOWEVER, THE ACT OF JUNE 19, 1948, PUBLIC LAW 684, 62 STAT. 490, 491, PROVIDES, SO FAR AS HERE MATERIAL:

THAT SUBSECTION (1) OF SECTION 14 OF THE ACT 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," APPROVED JULY 6, 1945, AS AMENDED, IS AMENDED TO READ AS FOLLOWS:

(1) TEMPORARY EMPLOYEES IN THE CUSTODIAL SERVICE PAID ON AN ANNUAL BASIS SHALL BE PAID AT THE RATES OF PAY OF GRADE 1 OF THE POSITION IN WHICH EMPLOYED AND SHALL, AT THE BEGINNING OF THE QUARTER FOLLOWING THE COMPLETION OF ONE YEAR'S SATISFACTORY SERVICE IN EACH PAY STATUS, BE ADVANCED SUCCESSIVELY TO THE RATES OF PAY OF THE NEXT HIGHER GRADE OF SUCH POSITION; AND TEMPORARY EMPLOYEES IN THE CUSTODIAL SERVICE PAID ON AN HOURLY BASIS SHALL BE PAID AT THE RATES OF PAY OF GRADE 1 OF THE POSITION IN WHICH EMPLOYED AND SHALL, AT THE BEGINNING OF THE QUARTER FOLLOWING THE COMPLETION OF TWELVE MONTHS' SATISFACTORY SERVICE IN EACH PAY STATUS, BE ADVANCED SUCCESSIVELY TO THE RATES OF PAY OF THE NEXT HIGHER GRADE OF SUCH POSITION: * * *

SEC. 2. ANY PERIOD OF CONTINUOUS SATISFACTORY SERVICE AS A TEMPORARY EMPLOYEE IN THE CUSTODIAL SERVICE PERFORMED BY ANY SUCH TEMPORARY EMPLOYEE PRIOR TO THE EFFECTIVE DATE OF THIS ACT SHALL BE CREDITABLE FOR A PROMOTION TO THE RATES OF PAY OF GRADE 2 OF THE POSITION IN WHICH SUCH TEMPORARY EMPLOYEE IS EMPLOYED. THE PROMOTION FROM TEMPORARY CHARMAN AT AN HOURLY RATE TO THE POSITION OF TEMPORARY FIREMAN-LABORER AT AN ANNUAL SALARY WAS NOT AN AUTOMATIC PROMOTION, AND, AS BOTH CLASSIFICATIONS NOW ARE SUBJECT TO AUTOMATIC PROMOTIONS BY VIRTUE OF THE QUOTED PROVISIONS OF PUBLIC LAW 684, SUPRA, THIS EMPLOYEE IS ENTITLED TO CREDIT FOR AUTOMATIC PROMOTION IN THE CLASSIFICATION AS TEMPORARY FIREMAN-LABORER FOR SATISFACTORY SERVICE SINCE JANUARY 16, 1947, THE DATE OF HIS APPOINTMENT AS TEMPORARY CHARMAN.

4. ON OCTOBER 1, 1947, AN EMPLOYEE WAS APPOINTED PROBATIONAL LABORER IN THE CUSTODIAL SERVICE AT $1,700 PER ANNUM, WHICH IS GRADE 1 FOR THE POSITION. HE WAS PROMOTED TO FIREMAN-LABORER AT $1,800 PER ANNUM, WHICH IS GRADE 1 FOR THAT POSITION ON APRIL 1, 1948. THE SALARY WAS CONVERTED TO $2,250 UNDER PUBLIC LAW 900.

INASMUCH AS THIS PROMOTION WAS EFFECTED AT AN INCREASE IN SALARY, IS THE EMPLOYEE TO BE CREDITED WITH ALL SATISFACTORY SERVICE FROM OCTOBER 1, 1947 OR FROM APRIL 1, 1948. THE PROMOTION FROM LABORER UNDER SECTION 14 (1) OF THE POSTAL EMPLOYEES PAY ACT OF 1945, TO FIREMAN LABORER UNDER SECTION 14 (H) OF THAT ACT, 59 STAT. 449, WAS NOT AN AUTOMATIC PROMOTION. HENCE, THIS EMPLOYEE IS ENTITLED TO CREDIT FOR ALL SATISFACTORY SERVICE FROM OCTOBER 1, 1947, TOWARD AUTOMATIC GRADE ADVANCES IN HIS CLASSIFICATION AS FIREMAN-LABORER.

5. AN EMPLOYEE IN THE MOTOR VEHICLE SERVICE ASSIGNED TO THE POSITION OF SPECIAL CLERK AND RECEIVING $2300 PER ANNUM ON JUNE 30, 1945, WAS CONVERTED UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF PUBLIC LAW 134 TO CLERK, GRADE 11, AT $2700 PER ANNUM ON JULY 1, 1945, AND UNDER PUBLIC LAW 386, ATTAINED THE RATE OF $3100 PER ANNUM IN THE SAME GRADE EFFECTIVE JANUARY 1, 1946. WAS TRANSFERRED TO THE POSITION OF DISPATCHER ON OCTOBER 1, 1947 WITHOUT CHANGE IN GRADE OR SALARY. UNDER PUBLIC LAW 900 -- 80TH CONGRESS, HIS RATE OF PAY CHANGED TO $3550 PER ANNUM, STILL IN GRADE 11.

THE QUESTION ARISES AS TO WHETHER THIS EMPLOYEE IS ENTITLED TO CREDIT FOR PROMOTION TO GRADE 12, THE FIRST MERITORIOUS GRADE, FROM JULY 1, 1945, OR FROM OCTOBER 1, 1947.

AS THIS EMPLOYEE RECEIVED NO AUTOMATIC GRADE PROMOTION SINCE JULY 1, 1945, AND SINCE ALL OF THE POSITIONS OCCUPIED WERE UNDER SECTION 13 (B) OF PUBLIC LAW 134, 59 STAT. 445--- PROVIDING FOR AUTOMATIC PROMOTIONS-- HE IS ENTITLED TO CREDIT FOR ALL SATISFACTORY SERVICE SINCE THAT TIME TOWARD ADVANCEMENT TO GRADE 12 IF HE IS IN A FIRST-CLASS POST OFFICE, GRADE 11 BEING THE TOP GRADE IN ANY LOWER CLASS OFFICE.

6. THE RECORD OF AN EMPLOYEE IN THE MOTOR VEHICLE SERVICE IS AS FOLLOWS: APPOINTED GARAGEMAN-DRIVER AT $1550 PER ANNUM ON JANUARY 1, 1930; AUTOMATIC PROMOTION TO $1650 PER ANNUM ON JANUARY 1, 1941; TRANSFERRED TO DRIVER-MECHANIC AT $1700 PER ANNUM ON JANUARY 1, 1932; AUTOMATIC PROMOTION TO $1800 ON JANUARY 1, 1933 TO $1900 ON JANUARY 1, 1934, AND TO $2000 PER ANNUM ON JANUARY 1, 1935. IS SALARY WAS CONVERTED TO GRADE 8, $2400 ON JULY 1, 1945 UNDER PUBLIC LAW 134. HE WAS DEMOTED TO GARAGEMAN-DRIVER AND HIS SALARY WAS REDUCED BECAUSE OF CHARGES TO $2100, GRADE 6, THE MAXIMUM AUTOMATIC GRADE, OCTOBER 1, 1945. ON JANUARY 1, 1946, HIS SALARY WAS CONVERTED TO $2500 PER ANNUM, UNDER PUBLIC LAW 386, AND ON JULY 1, 1948 TO $2950 UNDER PUBLIC LAW 900. HE WAS TRANSFERRED TO DISPATCHER ON JULY 16, 1948.

THE QUESTION ARISES AS TO THE SALARY AND GRADE TO WHICH THIS EMPLOYEE SHOULD BE ASSIGNED IN THE POSITION OF DISPATCHER IN ACCORDANCE WITH PUBLIC LAW 134, AS AMENDED, AND PUBLIC LAW 674. IT WILL BE NOTED THAT SATISFACTORY SERVICE SINCE LAST AUTOMATIC PROMOTION ON JANUARY 1, 1935 WAS FROM JANUARY 1, 1935 TO JULY 31, 1945 AND FROM OCTOBER 1, 1945 TO DATE. THE ONLY PERIOD OF UNSATISFACTORY SERVICE WAS FROM AUGUST 1, 1945 TO SEPTEMBER 30, 1945. IN THIS CONNECTION ATTENTION IS INVITED TO YOUR DECISION DATED JUNE 23, 1948, NO. B 73658, INDICATION THAT AN EMPLOYEE IS ENTITLED TO CREDIT FOR AUTOMATIC PROMOTION FOR SATISFACTORY SERVICE PERFORMED BEFORE AND AFTER A PERIOD OF UNSATISFACTORY SERVICE. IT WILL BE FURTHER NOTED THAT THE SATISFACTORY SERVICE AMOUNTS TO 13 YEARS, 4 MONTHS AND 16 DAYS.

IS THE EMPLOYEE MENTIONED ABOVE ENTITLED TO CREDIT WHICH WILL CARRY HIM BEYOND THE HIGHEST AUTOMATIC GRADES? IF SO, MAY HE BE ASSIGNED TO GRADE 13 IN THE POSITION OF DISPATCHER IN THE MOTOR VEHICLE SERVICE?

SECTION 13 (B) OF THE POSTAL EMPLOYEES PAY ACT OF 1945, 59 STAT. 445, PROVIDES AS FOLLOWS:

(B) CLERKS, DRIVER-MECHANICS, GENERAL MECHANICS, AND DISPATCHERS SHALL BE DIVIDED INTO ELEVEN GRADES, AS FOLLOWS:

CHART

GRADE 1 -------------------------$1,700 GRADE 7 -------------- $2,300

GRADE 2 ------------------------- 1,800 GRADE 8 --------------- 2,400

GRADE 3 ------------------------- 1,900 GRADE 9 --------------- 2,500

GRADE 4 ------------------------- 2,000 GRADE 10 -------------- 2,600

GRADE 5 ------------------------- 2,100 GRADE 11 -------------- 2,700

GRADE 6 ------------------------- 2,200

AND SHALL BE PROMOTED SUCCESSIVELY AT THE BEGINNING OF THE QUARTER FOLLOWING ONE YEAR'S SATISFACTORY SERVICE IN EACH GRADE TO THE NEXT HIGHER GRADE UNTIL THEY REACH THE ELEVENTH GRADE: PROVIDED, THAT FOR SUCH MOTOR- VEHICLE EMPLOYEES AT POST OFFICES OF THE FIRST CLASS THERE SHALL BE THREE ADDITIONAL GRADES; THAT IS GRADE 12, $2,800; GRADE 13, $2,900; GRADE 14, $3,000, AND THAT EMPLOYEES WHO PERFORM FAITHFUL AND MERITORIOUS SERVICE SHALL BE PROMOTED TO GRADE 12 AFTER THREE YEARS OF SUCH SERVICE IN GRADE 11, SHALL BE PROMOTED TO GRADE 13 AFTER FIVE YEARS OF SUCH SERVICE IN GRADE 12, AND SHALL BE PROMOTED TO GRADE 14 AFTER SEVEN YEARS OF SUCH SERVICE IN GRADE 13. THE ABOVE-QUOTED SALARY RATES HAVE BEEN INCREASED BY SUBSEQUENT LEGISLATION REFERRED TO IN YOUR LETTER.

THE DECISION B-73658, JUNE 23, 1948, 27 COMP. GEN. 773, REFERRED TO IN YOUR LETTER, DID NOT HOLD, AS SUGGESTED IN YOUR QUESTION, THAT PERIODS OF SATISFACTORY SERVICE BEFORE A PERIOD OF UNSATISFACTORY SERVICE COULD BE COUNTED TOWARD SUBSEQUENT WITHIN-GRADE ADVANCES. THE CASE CONSIDERED IN THAT DECISION INVOLVED UNSATISFACTORY SERVICE IN DECEMBER, 1945, FOR WHICH THE EMPLOYEE WAS NOT DISCIPLINED UNTIL MAY 16, 1946, WHEN HE WAS REDUCED IN GRADE, SERVED SATISFACTORILY IN THE LOWER GRADE, AND WAS RESTORED TO HIS FORMER GRADE JULY 1, 1946. UNDER THOSE CIRCUMSTANCES, THE DECISION HELD THAT THE EMPLOYEE COULD BE GIVEN CREDIT FOR ALL SATISFACTORY SERVICE IN THE HIGHER GRADE BEGINNING JANUARY 1, 1946; THAT IS, AFTER THE PERIOD OF UNSATISFACTORY SERVICE AND ELIMINATING FROM THE COMPUTATION OF SATISFACTORY SERVICE IN THE HIGHER GRADE THE PERIOD OF SATISFACTORY SERVICE IN THE LOWER GRADE. IN THE CASE SUBMITTED BY YOU AS EXAMPLE 6, CREDIT TOWARD GRADE ADVANCES SHOULD BE ALLOWED ONLY FOR THE PERIOD OF SATISFACTORY SERVICE BEGINNING AFTER THE UNSATISFACTORY SERVICE, THAT IS, AS STATED IN YOUR LETTER, FROM OCTOBER 1, 1945, WHICH WOULD ENTITLE THE EMPLOYEE, AS A MATTER OF RIGHT, WHEN TRANSFERRED TO DISPATCHER UNDER SECTION 13 (C), 59 STAT. 446, TO PLACEMENT IN GRADE 3. HOWEVER, SEE IN THIS CONNECTION DECISION TO YOU OF JUNE 22, 1948, B-76936, 27 COMP. GEN. 772.