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A JUMP MASTER WHO DURING FLIGHT OPERATES IN CLOSE COORDINATION WITH PILOT OF AIRCRAFT MAY NOT HAVE SUCH DUTIES CLASSIFIED AS A CREW MEMBER OF THE AIRCRAFT AS OPPOSED TO DUTIES AND RATING AS PARACHUTIST AND THEREFORE SUCH DUTIES DO NOT ENTITLE THE MEMBER TO FLIGHT PAY RATHER THAN PARACHUTE DUTY PAY. SECRETARY: FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO LETTER DATED JULY 8. IN WHICH WE HELD THAT PAYMENT OF FLIGHT PAY TO CERTAIN MEMBERS UNDER THE CIRCUMSTANCES INVOLVED THEREIN WAS ERRONEOUS. HE PRESENTED A STATEMENT OF THE DUTIES OF A JUMP MASTER AND REQUESTED A DECISION AS TO WHETHER THE LISTED DUTIES ARE SUFFICIENT TO PERMIT A DETERMINATION THAT ENTITLEMENT TO FLIGHT PAY EXISTS IN THIS SITUATION. WHO PERFORMED IN-FLIGHT DUTIES WERE ENTITLED TO DUAL HAZARDOUS DUTY PAY.

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B-164186, AUG. 15, 1969

MILITARY - ENTITLEMENT OF JUMP MASTER TO FLIGHT PAY DECISION TO SECRETARY OF NAVY CONCERNING ENTITLEMENT OF JUMP MASTER TO FLIGHT PAY. A JUMP MASTER WHO DURING FLIGHT OPERATES IN CLOSE COORDINATION WITH PILOT OF AIRCRAFT MAY NOT HAVE SUCH DUTIES CLASSIFIED AS A CREW MEMBER OF THE AIRCRAFT AS OPPOSED TO DUTIES AND RATING AS PARACHUTIST AND THEREFORE SUCH DUTIES DO NOT ENTITLE THE MEMBER TO FLIGHT PAY RATHER THAN PARACHUTE DUTY PAY.

TO MR. SECRETARY:

FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO LETTER DATED JULY 8, 1969, FROM THE ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF THE NAVY (FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT) REFERRING TO OUR DECISION B-164186, DATED JUNE 13, 1968, 47 COMP. GEN. 728, IN WHICH WE HELD THAT PAYMENT OF FLIGHT PAY TO CERTAIN MEMBERS UNDER THE CIRCUMSTANCES INVOLVED THEREIN WAS ERRONEOUS. HE PRESENTED A STATEMENT OF THE DUTIES OF A JUMP MASTER AND REQUESTED A DECISION AS TO WHETHER THE LISTED DUTIES ARE SUFFICIENT TO PERMIT A DETERMINATION THAT ENTITLEMENT TO FLIGHT PAY EXISTS IN THIS SITUATION. THE REQUEST HAS BEEN ASSIGNED SUBMISSION NO. SS-N-1043 BY THE DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE MILITARY PAY AND ALLOWANCE COMMITTEE.

IN OUR DECISION OF JUNE 13, 1968, WE HAD FOR CONSIDERATION WHETHER, DUE TO THE NATURE OF THE MISSION OF THE NAVAL AEROSPACE RECOVERY FACILITY, CERTAIN LISTED PERSONNEL, INCLUDING THOSE DESIGNATED AS JUMP MASTER, AIRBORNE DROP CONTROLLER, LOADMASTER AND AIRBORNE EXPERIMENTAL EQUIPMENT INSPECTOR, WHO PERFORMED IN-FLIGHT DUTIES WERE ENTITLED TO DUAL HAZARDOUS DUTY PAY. WE HELD THAT NOTWITHSTANDING THE DETAILED INFORMATION AS TO THE QUALIFICATIONS OF SUCH PERSONNEL AND THE FLIGHT ORDERS ISSUED BY THE COMMANDER TO INDIVIDUALS EMPLOYED IN THOSE CAPACITIES, THE RECORD FURNISHED DID NOT ESTABLISH THAT THE PERSONNEL INVOLVED WERE IN FACT ACTING AS CREW MEMBERS OR NONCREW MEMBERS WITHIN THE MEANING OF 37 U.S.C. 301 (A) (1) AND (4) WHILE CARRYING OUT THE MISSION OF THEIR UNIT SO AS TO ENTITLE THEM TO DUAL INCENTIVE PAY FOR THE HAZARDOUS DUTY PERFORMED.

THE PRESENT SUBMISSION CONCERNS ONLY JUMP MASTERS, AND A DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE DUTIES OF SUCH PERSONNEL DURING A TYPICAL PROJECT FLIGHT IS FURNISHED IN AN EFFORT TO SHOW THAT THEY ARE IN FACT MEMBERS OF THE AIRCREW AS WELL AS RATED PARACHUTISTS AND THUS ARE ENTITLED TO FLIGHT PAY IN ACCORDANCE WITH 37 U.S.C. 301 (B) RATHER THAN PARACHUTE PAY IN ACCORDANCE WITH 37 U.S.C. 301 (C).

WHILE IT MAY BE THAT A JUMP MASTER IN THE COURSE OF A FLIGHT PROJECT OPERATES IN CLOSE COORDINATION WITH THE PILOT OF THE AIRCRAFT AND GIVES DIRECTIONS AS TO THE POSITIONING OF THE AIRCRAFT OVER A TEST AREA, HIS PRIMARY DUTIES INVOLVE PARACHUTE JUMPING AND RELATED TRAINING AND TESTING. ALTHOUGH HE IS NECESSARILY INVOLVED IN FREQUENT FLIGHTS IN AIRCRAFT IN ORDER TO PERFORM HIS PRIMARY DUTIES AS A PARACHUTIST, IT APPEARS CLEAR THAT THE FLIGHT DUTIES NECESSARY TO THE SAFE AND EFFICIENT OPERATION OF SUCH AIRCRAFT UNDER NORMAL OPERATING CONDITIONS ARE PERFORMED BY THE CREW AND NONCREW MEMBERS WHO ARE ASSIGNED TO THE AIRCRAFT FOR THAT PURPOSE, RATHER THAN BY A JUMP MASTER. THE DETAILED EXPLANATION OF A JUMP MASTER'S DUTIES DURING A TYPICAL PROJECT FLIGHT DOES NOT ESTABLISH THAT HE MAY IN FACT BE CLASSIFIED AS A CREW MEMBER OF THE AIRCRAFT AS OPPOSED TO HIS REGULAR DESIGNATION AND RATING AS A PARACHUTIST.

ACCORDINGLY, WE FIND NO BASIS FOR A CONCLUSION THAT ENTITLEMENT TO FLIGHT PAY (RATHER THAN PARACHUTE PAY) EXISTS IN CONNECTION WITH THE DUTIES PERFORMED BY A JUMP MASTER.

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