B-81031, MARCH 17, 1949, 28 COMP. GEN. 522

B-81031: Mar 17, 1949

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COMPENSATION - REEMPLOYMENT - INITIAL SALARY RATES - EFFECT OF POSTAL RATE REVISION AND FEDERAL EMPLOYEES SALARY ACT OF 1948 THE $330 PER ANNUM INCREASE GRANTED TO FEDERAL EMPLOYEES GENERALLY BY SECTION 301 OF THE POSTAL RATE REVISION AND FEDERAL EMPLOYEES SALARY ACT OF 1948 MAY BE ADDED TO THE HIGHEST SALARY RATE PREVIOUSLY RECEIVED IN THE FEDERAL SERVICE BY AN EMPLOYEE WHO WAS SEPARATED FROM THE SERVICE PRIOR TO THE EFFECTIVE DATE OF THE SAID ACT. IN A POSITION TO WHICH SAID SECTION 301 IS APPLICABLE. 1949: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF OCTOBER 21. WHO IS RECEIVING COMPENSATION AT THE RATE OF $2. HE WAS RECEIVING COMPENSATION AT THE RATE OF $3. THE GENERAL RULE FOR FIXING THE INITIAL SALARY RATE UPON TRANSFER IS STATED IN 26 COMP.

B-81031, MARCH 17, 1949, 28 COMP. GEN. 522

COMPENSATION - REEMPLOYMENT - INITIAL SALARY RATES - EFFECT OF POSTAL RATE REVISION AND FEDERAL EMPLOYEES SALARY ACT OF 1948 THE $330 PER ANNUM INCREASE GRANTED TO FEDERAL EMPLOYEES GENERALLY BY SECTION 301 OF THE POSTAL RATE REVISION AND FEDERAL EMPLOYEES SALARY ACT OF 1948 MAY BE ADDED TO THE HIGHEST SALARY RATE PREVIOUSLY RECEIVED IN THE FEDERAL SERVICE BY AN EMPLOYEE WHO WAS SEPARATED FROM THE SERVICE PRIOR TO THE EFFECTIVE DATE OF THE SAID ACT--- JULY 3, 1948--- TO DETERMINE THE MAXIMUM RATE ABOVE THE MINIMUM OF THE GRADE WHICH MAY BE PAID INITIALLY UPON THE EMPLOYEE'S RESTORATION ON OR AFTER JULY 3, 1948, IN A POSITION TO WHICH SAID SECTION 301 IS APPLICABLE.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL WARREN TO THE ADMINISTRATOR OF VETERANS' AFFAIRS, MARCH 17, 1949:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF OCTOBER 21, 1948, REQUESTING A DECISION, FIRST, AT TO THE PROPER INITIAL SALARY RATE PAYABLE UPON TRANSFER TO YOUR ADMINISTRATION OF AN EMPLOYEE OF THE MUNICIPAL COURT OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, WHO IS RECEIVING COMPENSATION AT THE RATE OF $2,619.72 PER ANNUM--- THE FOURTH STEP IN GRADE CAF-4 OF A CLASSIFICATION ACT POSITION--- PAYABLE FROM DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA FUNDS; AND, SECOND, AS TO THE MAXIMUM SALARY RATE AT WHICH A FORMER EMPLOYEE OF YOUR ADMINISTRATION MAY BE REINSTATED, EFFECTIVE SEPTEMBER 20, 1948, WHEN ON THE DATE OF HIS RESIGNATION, APRIL 12, 1948, HE WAS RECEIVING COMPENSATION AT THE RATE OF $3,648 PER ANNUM--- THE THIRD STEP IN GRADE CAF-7.

THE EMPLOYEE REFERRED TO IN YOUR FIRST QUESTION DID NOT RECEIVE THE $330 PER ANNUM SALARY INCREASE GIVEN FEDERAL EMPLOYEES GENERALLY BY THE ACT OF JULY 3, 1948, PUBLIC LAW 900, BECAUSE OF THE PROVISION OF SECTION 304 OF THAT ACT, 62 STAT. 1268, TO THE EFFECT THAT THE SAID INCREASE SHALL NOT APPLY TO EMPLOYEES IN OR UNDER THE MUNICIPAL GOVERNMENT OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA PRIOR TO THE DATE OF ENACTMENT BY THE CONGRESS OF REVENUE LEGISLATION FOR THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA ADEQUATE TO MEET THE ADDITIONAL OBLIGATIONS INCIDENT THERETO.

THE GENERAL RULE FOR FIXING THE INITIAL SALARY RATE UPON TRANSFER IS STATED IN 26 COMP. GEN. 530 (QUOTING FROM THE SYLLABUS):

THE INITIAL SALARY RATE OF EMPLOYEES IN CLASSIFICATION ACT POSITIONS TO WHICH TRANSFERRED, PROMOTED, DEMOTED, REINSTATED, OR REEMPLOYED IN THE SAME OR DIFFERENT AGENCY, INCLUDING CASES OF REALLOCATION OF OCCUPIED POSITIONS FROM CLASSIFICATION ACT GRADES AND FROM GRADES UNDER EXECUTIVE ORDER NO. 6746, MAY, WITHIN ADMINISTRATIVE DISCRETION AND AVAILABLE FUNDS, BE FIXED AT A RATE WITHIN THE RANGE OF SALARIES IN THE GRADE TO WHICH TRANSFERRED, ETC., UP TO THE HIGHEST RATE ATTAINED IN ANY PRIOR POSITION IN THE EXECUTIVE BRANCH OF THE GOVERNMENT (INCLUDING WHOLLY OWNED GOVERNMENT CORPORATIONS), OR, IF SUCH HIGHEST RATE IS NOT IDENTICAL WITH ANY RATE IN THE GRADE, THE NEXT HIGHER RATE THEREIN MAY BE PAID; HOWEVER, SUCH RULE, AS HEREIN AMPLIFIED, MAY NOT BE APPLIED TO CASES HERETOFORE PROCESSED. 26 COMP. GEN. 368, AMPLIFIED.

WITH RESPECT TO THE SAID RULE, IT WAS HELD IN DECISION OF MARCH 9, 1949, B-81719, 28 COMP. GEN. 504, INVOLVING A SITUATION COMPARABLE WITH THAT HERE PRESENTED, THAT THE LIMITATION PRESCRIBED RELATES TO THE HIGHEST RATES OF COMPENSATION PREVIOUSLY RECEIVED BY THE EMPLOYEE AND HAS NO BEARING UPON THE RELATIVE STEP IN THE GRADE PREVIOUSLY ATTAINED, AND THAT THE BASIS THEREFOR IS THAT THE FIXING OF A SALARY RATE IN EXCESS OF THAT PAID AN EMPLOYEE IN THE GRADE FROM WHICH TRANSFERRED IS INCONSISTENT WITH THE WITHIN-GRADE SALARY ADVANCEMENT PLAN PROVIDED BY THE ACT OF AUGUST 1, 1941 (SEE 22 COMP. GEN. 489). THEREFORE, IT WAS HELD IN THAT DECISION THAT, IN CASES WHERE THE SALARY RATE FIXED IN THE POSITION TO WHICH TRANSFERRED WOULD NOT RESULT IN AN UNEARNED WITHIN GRADE SALARY ADVANCEMENT OR EQUIVALENT INCREASE, THE BASIS FOR THE LIMITATION WOULD NOT BE PRESENT, AND THE LIMITATION WOULD NOT NECESSARILY APPLY. AND, SINCE THE ACT OF JULY 3, 1948, SUPRA, WHICH GRANTED THE $330 INCREASE, PROVIDED THAT THE ADDITIONAL COMPENSATION GRANTED THEREBY SHALL NOT BE CONSTRUED AS "AN EQUIVALENT INCREASE" IN COMPENSATION WITHIN THE MEANING OF SECTION 7 (B) OF THE CLASSIFICATION ACT OF 1923, AS AMENDED, 59 STAT. 299, THE INITIAL SALARY RATE OF AN EMPLOYEE TRANSFERRED FROM THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA MAY BE FIXED TO CORRESPOND WITH THE RATE PREVIOUSLY RECEIVED BY HIM PLUS THE $330 PER ANNUM GRANTED FEDERAL EMPLOYEES OTHER THAN EMPLOYEES OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA. QUESTION 1, PRESENTED IN YOUR LETTER, IS ANSWERED ACCORDINGLY.

WITH RESPECT TO YOUR SECOND QUESTION IT WAS HELD IN DECISION OF AUGUST 28, 1945, 25 COMP. GEN. 230, AS FOLLOWS:

SECTION 405 (A) OF THE FEDERAL EMPLOYEES PAY ACT OF 1945, 59 STAT. 300, INCREASES THE BASIC SALARY RATES PRESCRIBED BY THE CLASSIFICATION ACT. PROVISION APPEARS IN THE STATUTE EITHER AUTHORIZING OR PRECLUDING THE GRANTING OF THE BENEFITS OF THE INCREASED RATES TO REINSTATED EMPLOYEES AT THE DISCRETION OF AN ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICE. HOWEVER, THE THEORY OF THE LONG-STANDING REINSTATEMENT RULE--- TO MAINTAIN EMPLOYEES IN THE SAME RELATIVE STATUS WITH OTHER EMPLOYEES AS TO SALARY THAT THEY LAST HELD IN THE FEDERAL SERVICE--- JUSTIFIES THE GRANTING OF THE INCREASED RATES TO REINSTATED EMPLOYEES. THE FOREGOING RULE WITH RESPECT TO THE SALARY INCREASES GRANTED BY THE FEDERAL EMPLOYEES PAY ACT OF 1945, 59 STAT. 300, APPLIES WITH EQUAL FORCE TO THE INCREASE GRANTED BY SECTION 301 OF THE ACT OF JULY 3, 1948, 62 STAT. 1267. HENCE, THE EMPLOYEE REFERRED TO MAY BE REINSTATED AT THE HIGHEST SALARY RATE HE PREVIOUSLY HAD RECEIVED IN THE FEDERAL SERVICE PLUS THE $330 PER ANNUM INCREASE. SPECIFICALLY, UPON THE BASIS OF THE FACTS RECITED IN YOUR LETTER, THE SAID EMPLOYEE MAY BE REINSTATED IN THE THIRD STEP OF GRADE CAF-7, AT A SALARY RATE OF $3,978 PER ANNUM.