§ 5335. Periodic step-increases
- (a) An employee paid on an annual basis, and occupying a permanent position
within the scope of the General Schedule, who has not reached the maximum
rate of pay for the grade in which his position is placed, shall be advanced
in pay successively to the next higher rate within the grade at the beginning
of the next pay period following the completion of -
- (1) each 52 calendar weeks of service in pay rates 1, 2, and 3;
- (2) each 104 calendar weeks of service in pay rates 4, 5, and 6; or
- (3) each 156 calendar weeks of service in pay rates 7, 8, and 9; subject
to the following conditions:
- (A) the employee did not receive an equivalent increase in pay from any
cause during that period; and
- (B) the work of the employee is of an acceptable level of competence as
determined by the head of the agency.
- (b) Under regulations prescribed by the Office of Personnel Management,
the benefit of successive step-increases shall be preserved for employees
whose continuous service is interrupted in the public interest by service
with the armed forces or by service in essential non-Government civilian employment
during a period of war or national emergency.
- (c) When a determination is made under subsection (a) of this section that
the work of an employee is not of an acceptable level of competence, the employee
is entitled to prompt written notice of that determination and an opportunity
for reconsideration of the determination within his agency under uniform procedures
prescribed by the Office of Personnel Management. If the determination is
affirmed on reconsideration, the employee is entitled to appeal to the Merit
Systems Protection Board. If the reconsideration or appeal results in a reversal
of the earlier determination, the new determination supersedes the earlier
determination and is deemed to have been made as of the date of the earlier
determination. The authority of the Office to prescribe procedures and the
entitlement of the employee to appeal to the Board do not apply to a determination
of acceptable level of competence made by the Librarian of Congress.
- (d) An increase in pay granted by statute is not an equivalent increase
in pay within the meaning of subsection (a) of this section.
- (e) This section does not apply to the pay of an individual covered by
the performance management and recognition system established under chapter
54 of this title, or, appointed by the President, by and with the advice and
consent of the Senate.
- (f) Notwithstanding subsection (b) or (e) of this section, an increase
in pay granted under section 5404 of this title is an equivalent increase
in pay within the meaning of subsection (a) of this section and shall be taken
into account in the case of any employee who, before becoming subject to this
section, was granted such an increase while covered by the performance management
and recognition system established under chapter 54 of this title.
- (g) In computing periods of service under subsection (a) in the case of
an employee who moves without a break in service of more than 3 days from
a position under a nonappropriated fund instrumentality of the Department
of Defense or the Coast Guard described in section 2105(c) to a position under
the Department of Defense or the Coast Guard, respectively, that is subject
to this subchapter, service under such instrumentality shall, under regulations
prescribed by the Office, be deemed service in a position subject to this
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