5 CFR § 430.309 - Rating performance.

§ 430.309 Rating performance.

(a) When rating senior executive performance, each agency must—

(1) Comply with the requirements of this section, and

(2) Establish a PRB as described at § 430.311.

(b) Each performance management system must provide that an appraisal and rating for a career appointee's performance may not be made within 120 days after the beginning of a new President's term.

(c) When an agency cannot prepare an annual summary rating at the end of the appraisal period because the senior executive has not completed the minimum appraisal period or for other reasons, the agency must extend the executive's appraisal period. Once the appropriate conditions are met, the agency will then prepare the annual summary rating.

(d) Senior executive performance appraisals and ratings are not appealable.

(e) Procedures for rating senior executives must provide for the following:

(1) Initial summary rating. The supervisor must develop an initial summary rating of the senior executive's performance, in writing, including through the use of automated systems, and share that rating with the senior executive. The senior executive may respond in writing.

(2) Higher-level review (HLR). A senior executive may ask for a higher-level official to review the initial summary rating before the rating is given to the PRB. The agency must provide each senior executive an opportunity for review of the initial summary rating by an employee, or (with the consent of the senior executive) a commissioned officer in the uniformed services on active duty in the agency, in a higher level in the agency.

(i) A single review by an official at a higher level who did not participate in determining the executive's initial summary rating will satisfy this requirement. An official providing HLR may not change the initial summary rating but may recommend a different rating to the PRB. HLR may be provided by an official who is at a higher level in the agency than the appointing authority who will approve the final rating under paragraph (e)(4) of this section.

(ii) When an agency cannot provide review by a higher-level official for an executive who receives an initial summary rating from the agency head because no such official exists in the agency, the agency must offer an alternative review as it determines appropriate, except that the review may not be provided by a member of the PRB or an official who participated in determining the initial summary rating.

(iii) If a senior executive declines review by agency-designated higher-level officials, the agency may offer an alternative review but it not obligated to do so. The agency must document the executive's declination of the HLR opportunity provided by the agency before offering an alternative review.

(iv) Copies of findings and recommendations of the HLR official or the official performing an alternative review under paragraph (e)(2)(ii) through (iii) of this section must be given to the senior executive, the supervisor, and the PRB.

(3) PRB review. The PRB must receive and review the initial summary rating, the senior executive's response to the initial rating if made, and findings and recommendations of any HLR or any alternative review under paragraph (e)(2) of this section before making recommendations to the appointing authority, as provided in § 430.311.

(4) Annual summary rating. The appointing authority must assign the annual summary rating of the senior executive's performance after considering the applicable PRB's recommendations. This rating is the official final rating for the appraisal period and must be communicated to the executive in writing, including through the use of automated systems, in accordance with the timelines developed under § 430.308(a).

(5) Shortened appraisal periods. The procedures of this section apply whenever an agency terminates an appraisal period under § 430.304(b)(5).