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Frequently Asked Questions Senior Executive Service

How does the pay freeze impact a senior professional (SL/ST) who is voluntarily or involuntarily reassigned to another SL/ST position?

An agency may grant a basic pay increase to a senior professional upon voluntary or involuntary reassignment only if the increase is based on a position change resulting in a substantial increase in responsibility, consistent with applicable statutory and regulatory requirements. For example, such a pay adjustment would be subject to the 12-month restriction at 5 CFR 534.503(c). Therefore, an agency may not grant such a pay adjustment within 12 months of the senior professional's most recent basic pay increase. An agency may still determine whether a pay increase is justified under section 147(c) of the Continuing Appropriations and Surface Transportation Act through such procedures as the agency head may establish. The procedures should include, as appropriate, review by an official at a higher level than the agency official otherwise authorized to take the pay action and must ensure verification and objective comparison of the positions' relative responsibilities. If at the time of the reassignment the agency documents the basis for the exception under the criteria in section 147(c) of the Act, and specifies the pay adjustment that was prevented by the 12-month restriction, then the agency may properly grant the basic pay increase when the 12-month period expires.

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