5 CFR 351.701 - Assignment involving displacement.

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§ 351.701 Assignment involving displacement.
(a) General. When a group I or II competitive service employee with a current annual performance rating of record of minimally successful (Level 2) or equivalent, or higher, is released from a competitive level, an agency shall offer assignment, rather than furlough or separate, in accordance with paragraphs (b), (c), and (d) of this section to another competitive position which requires no reduction, or the lease possible reduction, in representative rate. The employee must be qualified for the offered position. The offered position shall be in the same competitive area, last at least 3 months, and have the same type of work schedule (e.g., full-time, part-time, intermittent, or seasonal) as the position from which the employee is released. Upon accepting an offer of assignment, or displacing another employee under this part, an employee retains the same status and tenure in the new position. The promotion potential of the offered position is not a consideration in determining an employee's right of assignment.
(b) Lower subgroup—bumping. A released employee shall be assigned in accordance with paragraph (a) of this section and bump to a position that:
(1) Is held by another employee in a lower tenure group or in a lower subgroup within the same tenure group; and
(2) Is no more than three grades (or appropriate grade intervals or equivalent) below the position from which the employee was released.
(c) Same subgroup-retreating. A released employee shall be assigned in accordance with paragraphs (a) and (d) of this section and retreat to a position that:
(1) Is held by another employee with lower retention standing in the same tenure group and subgroup; and
(2) Is not more than three grades (or appropriate grade intervals or equivalent) below the position from which the employee was released, except that for a preference eligible employee with a compensable service-connected disability of 30 percent or more the limit is five grades (or appropriate grade intervals or equivalent). (The agency uses the grade progression of only the released employee's position of record to determine the applicable grades (or appropriate grade intervals or equivalent) of the employee's retreat right. The agency does not consider the grade progression of the position to which the employee has a retreat right.); and
(3) Is the same position, or an essentially identical position, formerly held by the released employee on a permanent basis as a competing employee in a Federal agency (i.e., when held by the released employee in an executive, legislative, or judicial branch agency, the position would have been placed in tenure groups I, II, or III, or equivalent). In determining whether a position is essentially identical, the determination is based on the competitive level criteria found in § 351.403, but not necessarily in regard to the respective grade, classification series, type of work schedule, or type of service, of the two positions.
(d) Limitation. An employee with a current annual performance rating of record of minimally successful (Level 2) or equivalent may be assigned under paragraph (c) of this section only to a position held by another employee with a current annual performance rating of record no higher than minimally successful (Level 2) or equivalent.
(e) Pay rates.
(1) The determination of equivalent grade intervals shall be based on a comparison of representative rates.
(2) Each employee's assignment rights shall be determined on the basis of the pay rates in effect on the date of issuance of specific reduction-in-force notices, except that when it is officially known on the date of issuance of notices that new pay rates have been approved and will become effective by the effective date of the reduction in force, assignment rights shall be determined on the basis of the new pay rates.
(f)
(1) In determining applicable grades (or grade intervals) under §§ 351.701(b)(2) and 351.701(c)(2), the agency uses the grade progression of the released employee's position of record to determine the grade (or interval) limits of the employee's assignment rights.
(2) For positions covered by the General Schedule, the agency must determine whether a one-grade, two-grade, or mixed grade interval progression is applicable to the position of the released employee.
(3) For positions not covered by the General Schedule, the agency must determine the normal line of progression for each occupational series and grade level to determine the grade (or interval) limits of the released employee's assignment rights. If the agency determines that there is no normal line of progression for an occupational series and grade level, the agency provides the released employee with assignment rights to positions within three actual grades lower on a one-grade basis. The normal line of progression may include positions in different pay systems.
(4) For positions where no grade structure exists, the agency determines a line of progression for each occupation and pay rate, and provides assignment rights to positions within three grades (or intervals) lower on that basis.
(5) If the released employee holds a position that is less than three grades above the lowest grade in the applicable classification system (e.g., the employee holds a GS-2 position), the agency provides the released employee with assignment rights up to three actual grades lower on a one-grade basis in other pay systems.
(g) If a competitive area includes more than one local commuting area, the agency determines assignment rights under this part on the basis of the representative rates for one local commuting area within the competitive area (i.e., the same local commuting area used to establish competitive levels under § 351.403(c)(4), (5), and (6)).
(h) If a competitive area includes positions under one or more pay bands, a released employee shall be assigned in accordance with paragraphs (a) through (d) of this section to a position in an equivalent pay band or one pay band lower, as determined by the agency, than the pay band from which released. A preference eligible with a service-connected disability of 30 percent or more must be assigned in accordance with paragraphs (a) through (d) of this section to a position in an equivalent pay band or up to two pay bands lower, as determined by the agency, than the pay band from which released.
(i) If a competitive area includes positions under one or more pay bands, and other positions not covered by a pay band (e.g., GS and/or FWS positions), the agency provides assignment rights under this part by:
(1) Determining the representative rate of positions not covered by a pay band, consistent with § 351.203;
(2) Determining the representative rate of each pay band, or competitive level within the pay band(s), consistent with § 351.203;
(3) As determined by the agency, providing assignment rights under paragraph (b) of this section (bumping), or paragraphs (c) and (d) of this section (retreating), consistent with the grade intervals covered in paragraphs (b)(2) and (c)(2) of this section, and the pay band intervals in paragraph (h) of this section.
[51 FR 319, Jan. 3, 1986, as amended at 56 FR 65417, Dec. 17, 1991; 60 FR 3063, Jan. 13, 1995; 60 FR 44254, Aug. 25, 1995; 62 FR 62502, Nov. 24, 1997; 63 FR 32594, June 15, 1998; 65 FR 62991, Oct. 20, 2000; 73 FR 29389, May 21, 2008]

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