(a)GS employees. For a GS employee, an equivalent increase is considered to occur at the time of any of the following personnel actions:
(1) A within-grade increase, excluding a quality step increase granted under subpart E of this part or an interim within-grade increase if that increase is later terminated under§ 531.414;
(2) A promotion (permanent or temporary) to a higher grade, including the promotion of an employee receiving a retained rate under5 CFR 359.705 or 5 CFR part 536 that does not result in a pay increase, but excluding—
(i) A temporary promotion if, at the end of the that temporary promotion, the employee is returned to the grade from which promoted; or
(ii) A promotion to a higher-graded supervisory or managerial position when the employee does not satisfactorily complete a probationary period established under5 U.S.C. 3321(a)(2) and is returned to a position at the lower grade held before promotion;
(3) Application of the maximum payable rate rule in§ 531.221 that results in a higher step rate within the employee's GS grade (or an increase for a GM employee to the next higher rate within the grade), except for application of that rule in a demotion to the extent that the employee's rate of basic pay after demotion does not exceed the lowest step rate that equals or exceeds the employee's rate of basic pay immediately before the demotion;
(4) Application of the superior qualifications and special needs pay-setting authority in§ 531.212 that results in a higher step rate within the employee's GS grade (or an increase for a GM employee to the next higher rate within the grade); or
(5) Application of the qualifications pay authority in5 U.S.C. 9814 to an employee of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, when the employee fulfills the 1-year service requirement in the position for which qualifications pay was paid or in a successor position.
(b)Non-GS employees who move to the GS pay system. When an employee performs service under a non-GS pay system for Federal employees and that service is potentially creditable towards a GS within-grade increase waiting period, an equivalent increase is considered to occur at the time of any of the following personnel actions in the non-GS pay system:
(1) A promotion to a higher grade or work level within the non-GS pay system (unless the promotion is cancelled and the employee's rate of basic pay is redetermined as if the promotion had not occurred); or
(2) An opportunity to receive a within-level or within-range increase thatresults in forward movement in the applicable range of rates of basic pay (including an increase granted immediately upon movement to the non-GS pay system from another pay system—e.g., to account for the value of accrued within-grade increases under the former pay system or to provide a promotion-equivalent increase), where “forward movement in the applicable range” means any kind of increase in the employee's rate of basic pay other than an increase that is directly and exclusively linked to—
(i) A general structural increase in the employee's basic pay schedule or rate range (including the adjustment of a range minimum or maximum); or
(ii) The employee's placement under a new basic pay schedule within the same pay system, when such placement results in a nondiscretionary basic pay increase to account for occupational pay differences.
(c)Locality rates and special rates. Since locality rates under subpart F of this part and special rates under 5 CFR part 530, subpart C, and similar rates under other legal authority (e.g., 38 U.S.C. 7455) are not rates of basic pay for the purpose of this subpart, increases in pay resulting from an adjustment in an employee's locality payment or special rate supplement or from placement on a new locality rate or special rate schedule are not considered in making equivalent increase determinations.