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This is in response to your claim for a lump sum payment for accrued annual leave which was received by the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) on November 21, 1996. For the reasons expressed herein, your claim is barred.
From January 15, 1973 to February 28, 1977, you were employed by the Department of the Navy under a personal service contract. On January 8, 1988, Congress enacted Public Law 100-238, the Federal Employees' Retirement System, Technical Corrections. Section 110 of Public Law 100-238 provided for the creditability of service performed under personal service contracts in computing benefits under the Civil Service Retirement System (CSRS) in instances where the employing agency certified to OPM that it intended through the personal service contract that the employee was to be considered as having been appointed to a position in which the employee would be subject to CSRS.
In accordance with section 110 of Public Law 100-238, you have received CSRS credit for your contract service. In addition, the Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB) has determined that you were entitled to credit for your contract service in determining whether you had sufficient service to remain under CSRS when the Federal Employees' Retirement System (FERS) was established.
You now claim a lump sum payment of $1,991.36 plus interest for the 196 hours of unused annual leave that you earned during your contract service. It is important to emphasize that your entitlement to a lump sum payment, if any, accrued when you completed your contract service in 1977; the enactment of Public Law 100-238 did not affect your entitlement to a lump sum payment for your unused annual leave. See Jerry W. Walters, B-251301.2, September 17, 1993 (another former contract employee with the Navy was entitled to retroactive CSRS credit under section 110 of Public Law 110-238, but section 110 did not affect this claimant's entitlement to additional compensation).
It is also clear that while the letter from the Secretary of the Navy dated February 12, 1991, satisfied the certification requirement in Public Law 100-238 and thereby entitled you to receive CSRS credit for your contract service, it did not entitle you to a lump sum payment for your unused annual leave.
As correctly explained in a letter dated March 25, 1994, that your current employer, the Air Force, received from OPM's Compensation Administration Division, your lump sum payment claim for unused annual leave is unrelated to the aforementioned MSPB decision which concluded that you had completed sufficient service to remain in CSRS. We reiterate that whatever entitlement you may have had to a lump sum unused annual leave payment accrued when you separated on February 28, 1977. As a consequence, consideration of your lump sum payment claim is barred by 31 U.S.C. 3702(b) ("the Barring Act"), which specifically prescribes a six year time period within which a claim must be received in order for it to be considered on its merits.
OPM has no authority to disregard the provisions of that act or to waive the time limitation that it imposes. See Alfred L. Lillie, B-209955, May 31, 1983.
Murray M. Meeker Senior Attorney