S. 1510: United States Secret Service Uniformed Division Modernization Act

S. 1510

United States Secret Service Uniformed Division Modernization Act

Sponsor
Sen. Joseph I. Lieberman

Date
June 29, 2010 (111th Congress, 2nd Session)

Staff Contact
Communications

Floor Situation

S. 1510 is expected to be considered on Monday, June 28, 2010, under suspension of the rules, requiring a two-thirds majority vote for passage.  This legislation was introduced by Senator Joseph Lieberman (ID- CT).

Bill Summary

S. 1510 transfers the authority covering pay and work hours for current U.S. Secret Service Uniform Division members from the City of the District of Columbia to the federal government.  This legislation would authorize all the Department of Homeland Security to fix and adjust basic pay for the transferred employees beginning with the first pay period after May 1, 2010.  S. 1510 would increase direct spending by $15 million from 2011—2020.

In addition, this bill will attach H.R. 2495, the Federal Real Property Disposal Enhancement Act to the overall legislation to offset the cost of S. 1510.  This provision would direct the Administrator of the General Services Administration (GSA) to provide guidance as to identifying, planning, and evaluating disposal costs of federal agency real property.  H.R. 2495 would reduce net direct spending by $15 million from 2011—2020.

Title I:  S. 1510—United States Secret Service Uniformed Division Modernization Act

Authority:

The bill authorized the Secretary of Homeland Security to fix and adjust rates of pay for members of the U.S. Secret Service Uniformed Division; and to determine appropriate levels of competence for service-step adjustments.  It also establishes and determines the positions at the Officer and Sergeant ranks to be included as technician positions, and to include the rate of basic pay of a member who is changed or demoted to a lower rank.

Basic Pay:

The bill establishes a new fixed schedule of rates of basic pay for the uniformed division, except for a limit placed on pay for lieutenants, captains, and inspector ranks to 95 percent of the rate of pay for level five of the executive schedule.

The following ranges of pay over 13 steps based on years of experience:

  • Officer:  Step 1 = $44,000 to step 13 = $75,680
  • Sergeant:  Step 4 = $59,708 to step 13 = $87,032
  • Lieutenant:  Step 5 = $69,018 to step 13 = $95,738
  • Captain:  Step 6 = $79,594 to step 13 = $105,312
  • Inspector:  Step 6 = $91,533 to step 13 = $121,108

S.1510 directs the Secretary to adjust the schedule by the amount corresponding to the adjustment made to rates of pay under the federal government’s general schedule for compensation of its employees, whenever a general schedule adjustment is made.

 

Rate of Pay for Original Appointments:

The bill provides that all original appointments shall be made at the minimum rate of basic pay for the Officer rank set forth in the schedule.  The Director of the U.S. Secret Service may appoint an individual at a rate above the minimum rate of basic pay for the Officer rank based on a person’s superior qualification.

Service Step Adjustments:

The bill stipulates that each member of the Uniformed Division, who performs at acceptable levels, will have the following service step adjustments:

  • Each member in service step 1, 2, or 3 shall advance successively to the next higher service stop at the beginning of the first pay period immediately following the completion of 52 calendar weeks of active service.
  • Each member in service step 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, or 11 shall advance successively to the next higher service step at the beginning of the first pay period immediately following the completion of 104 calendar weeks of active service
  • Each member in service step 12 shall be advanced successively to the next higher service step at the begging of the first pay period immediately following the completion of 156 calendar weeks of service.

Technician Positions:

The bill provides for additional compensation to any individual holding a technical position at six percent of the sum of the member’s basic rate of pay.  The individual would receive the additional compensation until the position is determined to no longer be a technical position.

Promotions and Demotions:

Promotion:  Each member who is promoted to a higher rank shall receive basic pay at the same step at which such member was being compensated prior to the date of the promotion.

Demotion:  Any member changed or demoted for any rank to a lower rank will receive the rate of basic pay at the rate of pay for any step in the lower rank which does not exceed the lowest step.

Clothing Allowances: 

The Director of the U.S. Secret Service is authorized to provide a clothing allowance to a member assigned to perform duties in normal business or work attire purchased at the discretion of the employee.  The clothing allowance shall not be treated as part of the member’s basic pay; the allowance for clothing shall not exceed $500 per annum.

Leave Limitations: 

The bill sets annual leave limitations for the three most senior officials in the Uniformed Division:  the deputy chief, assistant chief, and the chief.  The annual leave limitations will be consistent with the ceiling for members of the Senior Executive Service or related federal employees.

Miscellaneous provisions:

S. 1510 provides that retirees of the Uniformed Division who also happen to be members of the District of Columbia Police and Firefighters Retirement and Disability system would receive a three percent increase in retirement compensation.

The bill would make adjustments to the District of Columbia code to prevent the measure from affecting retirement benefits and pensions of current and former members who retired under the D.C. system.

Title II:  H.R. 2495—Federal Real Property Disposal Enhancement Act

Duties and General Services Administration and Executive Agencies:

The bill would direct the Administrator of the General Services Administration (GSA) to issue guidance for the development and implementation of agency real property plans.  Guidance shall include:

  • How to identify excess property;
  • How to evaluate the costs and benefits involved with disposing of property;
  • How to prioritize disposal decisions based on agency missions and future holdings;
  • How to best dispose of those properties.

The Administrator shall submit an annual report, for each of the first five years after 2010 based on data submitted from all executive agencies, detailing executive agency efforts to reduce real property assets.  The reports shall include:

  • Aggregate estimated market value and number of real property assets under control of executive agencies;
  • Aggregate estimated market value and number of surplus properties assets under control of executive agencies;
  • Aggregate cost of maintaining all surplus property under the control of the executive agencies;
    • Shall include recurring maintenance and repair costs, utilities, cleaning, and janitorial costs and expenses;
    • Shall include lease costs, including base and operating rent and other relevant costs.
  • Aggregate estimated deferred maintenance cost of property under the control of the executive agencies.

The bill directs the Administrator to assist executive agencies in the identification and disposal of excess real property, including the development and implementation of a property plan in order to identify properties to declare as excess.

The bill requires executive agencies to reassign property to another activity within the agency when the property is no longer required for the purposes of appropriation used to make the purchase.

Preparing Properties to be reported as Excess:

The bill would direct the Administrator to obligate an amount to pay the direct and indirect costs related to identifying and preparing properties to be reported excess by another agency.  The GSA shall be reimbursed for such costs from the proceeds of the sale of such properties for such costs.

Reverted Real Property:

The bill allows for the Administrator to take control of such property recommended for reversion, and to sell it at or above appraised fair market value for cash and not by lease, exchange, leaseback arrangements, or service agreements.

Prior to any sale, the Administrator shall make such property available to state and local governments and certain non-profit institutions or organizations.

Agency Retention of Proceeds: 

Net proceeds from the transfer or sale of real property shall be deposited into the appropriate real property account of the agency that had custody and accountability for the real property.

Title III:  Waiver of Recovery of Certain Payments under DOD Civilian Employees Voluntary Separation Incentive Program.

Authority for Waiver of Recovery of Certain Payments:

The bill gives allows the Secretary of Defense to waive the requirement for repayment to the Department of Defense of a voluntary separation incentive payment to any employee or former employee, for the period of April 1, 2004, and ending on March 1, 2008, received a voluntary separation incentive payment.

The Secretary may grant a waiver in the case of any individual only if the Secretary determines that recovery of the amount of the payment referred to would be against equity and good conscience or would be contrary to the best interests of the United States.

The Secretary may use fund authorized to be appropriated for civilian personnel for fiscal year 2011 and any year thereafter.

Background

The U.S. Secret Service employs nearly 6,500 personnel; 1,300 of those personnel are Uniformed Division law enforcement officers who help protect the president, the White House, foreign dignitaries, embassies, and mission offices.

 The U.S. Secret Service retirement and disability system is covered under District of Columbia standards, rather than federal standards. As a result, Uniformed Division employees are often not compensated as well as other federal government employees.

The Senate committee report notes that the agency has been experiencing significant resignations from Uniformed Division officers, particularly those with fewer than 10 years of service, and also notes that agency leaders believe that junior officers are resigning to join other forces with better pay and benefits than the Uniformed Division can currently offer.

Cost

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimates that S.1510 would increase direct spending by $46 million over the 2011-2015 period and $15 million over the 2011-2020 period.  Enacting the bill would have no effect on revenues.

In addition, CBO estimates that enacting H.R. 2495 would reduce net direct spending by $15 million over the 201- 2019 period, and increase spending subject to appropriation by $10 million over the 2010-2014 period.