H.R. 4902, To Amend Title 5, United States Code, to Expand Law Enforcement Availability Pay to Employees of U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s Air and Marine Operations

H.R. 4902

To Amend Title 5, United States Code, to Expand Law Enforcement Availability Pay to Employees of U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s Air and Marine Operations

Sponsor
Rep. Will Hurd

Date
June 21, 2016 (114th Congress, 2nd Session)

Staff Contact
Robert Goad

Floor Situation

On Tuesday, June 21, 2016, the House will consider H.R. 4902, to amend Title 5, United States Code, to Expand Law Enforcement Availability Pay to Employees of U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s Air and Marine Operations, under suspension of the rules. H.R. 4902 was introduced on April 12, 2016 by Rep. Will Hurd (R-TX), and was referred to the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, which ordered the bill reported, by voice vote, on April 14, 2016.

Bill Summary

H.R. 4902 amends title 5, United States Code, to expand law enforcement availability pay (LEAP) to law enforcement officers of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s Air and Marine Operations (AMO).The bill standardizes premium pay and expands LEAP applicability so that it covers all AMO law enforcement officers. To ensure pay is standardized swiftly, the legislation would require that the change come into force on the first day of the pay period that begins at least 14 days after the date of enactment.

Background

U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s (CBP) Air and Marine Operations (AMO) is a federal law enforcement organization with over 1,200 federal agents throughout the United States. AMO law enforcement officers utilize aircraft and marine vessels to serve and protect the American people at, and beyond, the borders of the United States.[1]

AMO law enforcement officers are compensated through a number of different premium pay systems to account for their overtime. For instance, AMO pilots are covered by Law Enforcement Availability Pay (LEAP), but other AMO law enforcement officers, such as Air Enforcement and Marine Agents, are covered by administratively uncontrollable overtime.[2]

Under the current system, two law enforcement officers working together can be compensated under different premium pay systems, presenting challenges for the CBP when administering multiple pay systems, as well as for shift planning and budgeting purposes.[3] About 500 law enforcement officers in Air and Marine Operations are eligible for overtime compensation under three different schedules: the Administratively Uncontrollable Overtime (AUO), the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), and the Federal Employee Pay Act (FEPA). Total overtime costs for those officers, including pay and benefits, totaled $18 million in 2015. Their total base pay was $46 million in the same year.[4]

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[1] See House Report 114-600 at 2.
[2] Id.
[3] Id.
[4] See CBO Score for H.R. 4902

Cost

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimates implementing H.R. 4902 would reduce costs by $2 million annually, assuming future appropriations are reduced consistent with the bill’s provisions. This bill will not affect direct spending or revenues, so pay-as-you-go procedures do not apply. The CBO estimates that passage of this bill would not increase net direct spending or on-budget deficits.

Additional Information

For questions or further information please contact Robert Goad with the House Republican Policy Committee by email or at 6-1831.