A retired employee appealed the denial of his claim for a retroactive temporary promotion and backpay for the period of June 22, 1970 to June 25, 1972. On June 22, 1970, the employee was detailed to perform the duties of a higher grade position and was given a 60-day temporary promotion to that position from October until December 1970. A March 1971 memorandum designated the employee as the acting chief of his shop and stated that he would be made permanent chief when the position became classified under new standards. The agency denied the claim because it was filed more than 6 years after the detail occurred and because a memorandum indicated that the position was abolished on April 13, 1971. The Claims Division denied the claim on the grounds that it was not received by GAO until December 12, 1977, thereby preventing GAO from considering any portion of the claim occurring before December 12, 1971, under the terms of the applicable statute of limitations. It also stated that, since the agency believed the position in question had been abolished, the employee had not been detailed to an established position. In support of his appeal, the employee submitted additional evidence to show that he performed as acting chief throughout the period in question including: (1) statements from his former supervisors which asserted that at no time was there any consideration of abolishing the position and that the employee served in that capacity continuously until he was permanently appointed to the position; and (2) a letter from the agency supervising the facility certifying that no records existed in the facility office which indicate that the position was ever abolished. GAO found that the employee was continuously detailed to the higher grade position from the day of his first detail to the day of his permanent promotion and that the 6-year period contained in the statute of limitations must be applied from the time the claim was received at GAO, December 12, 1977, not the date it was filed with the agency. Accordingly, the employee is entitled to a retroactive temporary promotion to the position in question with backpay for the period of December 12, 1971, to June 25, 1972.
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