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Pay-Setting Examples Involving Special Salary Rates

The following examples demonstrate the application of pay-setting rules that involve promotion to and from special salary rate positions.   Examples 1 and 2 apply the policies in Chapter 2-11, GS Promotions--Special Salary Rate Positions, DOJ Order 1200.1.  Example 3 covers a situation that is not covered by DOJ Order 1200.1.

All examples use 2003 annual rates of pay.



Example 1

Promotion from a LEO Special Salary Rate Position to a Position Covered by a LEO Special Salary Rate and a Special Salary Rate under 5 U.S.C. 5305

Facts:   A GS-7 step 6 Nurse at FCI Manchester, KY receives a LEO special salary rate (Table 491) and the 8.64 percent Rest of U.S. (RUS) locality adjustment. The employee does not receive a special salary rate under 5 U.S.C. 5305.

The employee's total pay is $41,011 (OPM salary table 2003-RUS (LEO), and the highest applicable scheduled rate of basic pay is $37,749 (2003 Special Salary Rate Table No. 491).

The employee is being promoted to a GS-9 Nurse position that is covered by OPM Special Salary Rate Table No. 440 in Lexington, KY, a LEO special salary rate, and the 8.64 percent RUS locality payment.

Follow these steps to set pay:

Step a:   Identify the employee's highest applicable scheduled rate of basic pay:

$37,749

Step b:   Compute the dollar amount of two step increases at the employee's current grade:

2 x $968 = $1,936

Step c:   Add the results of Step a. and Step b.:

$37,749 + 1,936 = $39,685

Step d:   On the applicable schedule for the target grade (the lower applicable pay schedule for GS-7, i.e., the LEO special salary rate), identify the lowest GS-9 salary that exceeds $39,685:

$40,255 = GS-9, step 4 on the LEO special salary rate table

Step e:   The employee is entitled to the highest applicable scheduled rate of basic pay for GS-9, step 4:

$42,623 is the GS-9, step 4 rate on Special Salary Rate Table No. 440 in Lexington, KY. This rate will be used to calculate any future promotions or retained pay. (By comparison, the GS-9, step 4 rate on the LEO special salary rate table is only $40,255).

Step f:   The employee is also entitled to have his/her total pay, (i.e. basic pay plus locality pay) computed for GS-9, step 4 on the applicable schedule that results in the highest total pay.

The employee's highest total pay entitlement is based on the LEO special salary rate table. The employee's total pay is $43,733; a GS-9, step 4 LEO special salary rate of $40,255, plus the 8.64 locality payment (OPM Salary Table 2003-RUS (LEO)). By comparison, the employee's GS-9, step 4 total pay on Special Salary Rate Table No. 440 would be only $42,623.

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Example 2

Promotion from a Special Salary Rate Position under 5 U.S.C. 5305 to a Position Covered by a LEO Special Salary Rate and a Special Salary Rate under 5 U.S.C. 5305

Facts. A GS-7, step 3 non-LEO employee receives a special salary rate under 5 U.S.C. 5305 (OPM Special Salary Rate Table No. 164 in Washington, DC.), but does not receive a LEO special salary rate, locality pay, or a special pay adjustment for LEOs. The employee's highest applicable scheduled rate of basic pay is $34,845 (OPM Special Salary Rate Table No. 164).

The employee is being promoted to a GS-9 position that is covered by a LEO special salary rate, and the higher OPM Special Salary Rate Table No. 162 in Philadelphia, PA.


Follow these steps to set pay:

Step a:  Identify the employee's highest applicable scheduled rate of basic pay:

$34,845

Step b:  Compute the dollar amount of two step increases at the employee's current grade:

2 X $968 = $1,936

Step c:  Add the results of Step a. and Step b.:

$34,845 + 1,936 = $36,781

Step d:  On the applicable schedule for the target grade (the lower applicable pay schedule for GS-9--i.e., the LEO special salary rate table), identify the lowest GS-9 salary that exceeds $36,781:

$37,887 = GS-9, step 2 on the LEO special salary rate table

Step e:  The employee is entitled to the highest applicable scheduled rate of basic pay for GS-9, step 2:

$40,255 is the GS-9, step 2 rate on OPM-approved special salary rate table number 162 in Philadelphia, PA. This rate will be used to calculate any future promotions or retained pay. (By comparison, the GS-9 step 2 rate on the LEO special salary rate table is only $37,887.)

Step f:  The employee is also entitled to have his or her total pay (i.e., basic pay plus locality pay) computed for GS-9, step 2 on the applicable schedule that results in the highest total pay.

The employee's highest total pay entitlement is based on the LEO special salary rate. The employee´s total pay is $42,475--a GS-9, step 2 LEO special salary rate of $37,887, plus locality pay for Philadelphia, PA of $4,588 (OPM Salary Table 2003-PHL (LEO). (By comparison, the employee's GS-9, step 2 total pay on OPM-approved special salary rate table number 162 would have been only $40,255.)

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Example 3

Promotion from a Non-LEO Special Salary Rate Position to a Non-LEO, Non-Special Salary Rate Position

Facts. A GS-7, step 3 non-LEO employee receives a special salary rate under 5 U.S.C. 5305--the clerical special salary rate for the Washington, DC area (OPM Special Salary Rate Table 29)--of $31,941. However, the employee's total pay is computed under the locality pay system, which produces a higher total pay of $34,529 (OPM Salary Table 2003-DCB).

The employee is being promoted to a non-LEO, non-special salary rate GS-8 position in Washington, DC.


Follow these steps to set pay:

Step a:  Identify the employee's highest applicable scheduled rate of basic pay:

$31,941

Step b:  Compute the dollar amount of two step increases at the employee's current grade:

2 X $968 = $1,936

Step c:  Add the results of Step a. and Step b.:

$31,941 + 1,936 = $33,877

Step d:  On the General Schedule for GS-8 (OPM Salary Table 2003-GS), identify the lowest GS-8 salary that exceeds $33,877:

$34,302 = GS-8, step 3 on the General Schedule. This is the employee's rate of basic pay upon promotion. This rate will be used to calculate any future promotions, retained pay, or highest previous rate.

Step e:   The employee is also entitled to the Washington, DC rate of locality pay for GS-8, step 3. The employee's total pay is $38,240 (OPM Salary Table 2003-DCB).

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Updated: September 2012
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