U.S. Geological Survey Manual
370.312.2 - Employment Ceiling
OPR: Admin/Office of Personnel
1. Employment Ceiling. Maximum allowable employment ceilings are determined by the President at the time of the annual budget review, both for the end of the fiscal year that is in progress and for the end of the succeeding fiscal year. Ceilings are stated on a full-time equivalent (work year) basis and employment categories are reportable based on combinations of work schedule (full-time, part-time, intermittent), position (permanent, temporary), and permanent/ temporary appointment (defined by tenure code or type of appointment).
A. Types of Work Schedules.
(1) A full-time employee is one who is regularly scheduled to work the number of hours and days required by the administrative workweek for his/her employment group or class. (Most full-time employees have an administrative workweek of 5 days of 8 hours each.)
(2) A part-time employee is one who is regularly employed on a prescheduled tour of duty that is less than the specified hours or days of work for full-time employees in the same group or class.
(3) An intermittent employee is one who is employed on an irregular or occasional basis, with hours of days of work not on a prearranged schedule, and with compensation only for the time actually employed or for services actually rendered.
B. Types of Positions.
(1) A permanent position is a position that is either: (1) established without time limitation, or (2) established for a limited period of a year or more, or (3) occupied for a year or more (not necessarily continuously by the same employee), regardless of the intent when it was established.
(2) A temporary position is one that has been established for a limited period of less than a year and that has not been occupied for more than a year.
C. Appointment Categories. For purposes of FTE ceiling, "permanent appointments" consist of Tenure Groups 1, 2, and all SES employees except those serving under "limited term and "limited emergency" appointments. "Temporary and Indefinite Appointments" consist of all other employees.
Tenure Codes considered permanent are:
Tenure Group 1: Competitive Service Tenure Group 1 includes employees serving under career appointments who either have completed initial appointment probation or are not required to serve initial appointment probation.
Excepted Service Tenure Group 1 includes employees whose appointment carries no restriction or condition such as conditional, indefinite or specific time limitation, or trial period.
Tenure Group 2: Competitive Service Tenure Group 2 includes employees serving under career-conditional appointments, and career employees serving initial appointment probation.
Excepted Service Tenure Group 2 includes employees who are serving trial periods, or whose tenure is equivalent to career-conditional tenure in the competitive service.
2. Characteristics of FTE Ceiling. Work force is managed based on the work-year ceiling provided by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). The FTE system is a cumulative measure which takes in to account employment levels throughout the year in terms of the paid hours worked by the agency's employees. In the ceiling allocation process these are usually expressed as work years (2080 hours). Hours are charged against ceiling as they are paid. These hours count against the agency's ceiling even if the employee who worked them is no longer on board at the end of the fiscal year.
All straight time hours paid for employees subject to ceiling are charged against FTE ceilings, including paid leave, holidays and nonproductive straight time as well as actual work hours. Overtime, leave without pay, or time paid to ceiling exempt employees are not charged to FTE ceilings.
3. Reporting of Certain Categories Under the Full-Time Equivalent (FTE)/Work-Year Basis.
Category-Effective Date of Ceiling Counts. How Reported - Cumulative covers all paid straight time hours in the agency during course of year (except as noted below).
Category-Total Paid Ceiling Employment. How Reported - Employees (including direct hire nationals of foreign countries and U.S. territories) covered by presidential work-year ceilings, who receive pay for any part of the pay periods reported, including those on paid vacation, paid sick leave, and persons who have separated from the agency during the current reporting period.
Category-Definition of Full-Time Permanent. How Reported - Full-time employees with permanent appointments.
Category-Definition of "Other" Employment. How Reported - The derived ceiling, i.e., the difference between agency's Total employment ceiling and the Full-time with Permanent Appointment Ceiling.
Category-Temporary Employees (NTE 1 year appts). How Reported - Counted in "other" category for all paid straight time hours during course of the year even if off agency rolls by September 30.
Category-Term Employees (1-4 year appts). How Reported - All paid straight time hours charged to "other" category because they do not have permanent appointment.
Category-Intermittent Employees. How Reported - Counted against "other" category for all straight time paid hours during year even if off during September.
Category-Permanent Part-time Employees. How Reported - Counted against "other" category for all paid straight time hours during year.
Category-Employees who have been separated during fiscal year. How Reported - Counted for all paid straight time hours during year either against "full-time permanent" or "other" category depending upon appointment and schedule.
Category-Employees on LWOP, Furlough, or Suspension Status. How Reported - Not counted while the employee is in a nonpay status. (This does not negate hours worked prior to the beginning of the nonpay status.)
Category-WTOP Employees (1st yr.), Summer Aids, Stay-in-School, Federal Junior Fellowship Program, Pre-retirement leave (only when certain conditions are met). How Reported - Exempt from ceiling.
Category-Overtime. How Reported - Not counted against ceiling; however, is reported as appropriate.
Category-Veterans Readjustment Appointees (VRA). How Reported - Counted as "full-time permanent" because appointment is tenure group 2.
Category-Handicapped or mentally retarded persons while serving on 700-hour trial basis (when temporary appointment given). How Reported - All paid straight time hours charged to "other" category while employee is serving on trial basis.
Category-Full-time employees serving under temporary appointments pending establishment of Register (TAPER). How Reported - All paid straight time hours charged against "other" because appointee is in tenure group 3.
Category-Full-time employees serving under temporary appointments (NTE 1 yr) who have been extended beyond first year. How Reported - All paid straight time hours charged against "other" because appointee is in tenure group 0.
Category-Cooperative Education (Co-op) Student Employees. How Reported - Employees have permanent appointments (tenure group 2). All paid straight time hours charged against "full-time permanent" or "other" category depending on work schedule.
Category-Personnel resources under contract with private industry. How Reported - Not Federal employees, and therefore not counted against ceilings.
Category-IPA mobility assignees. How Reported - All paid straight time hours charged from Federal employees on assignment if agency pays more than 50% of salary, and non-Federal assignees if appointed under 5 USC 3374 for more than 30 days.
Category-Detailees. How Reported - All paid straight time hours are charged against the appointing agency/division from which the employee is payrolled whether or not the agency is reimbursed for hours worked by the employee detailed to another agency/division.
Category-Employees carried on annual or sick leave after the last day of active duty specified in a reduction-in-force notice. How Reported - Not counted against ceiling.
Category-Employees who are on severance pay. How Reported - Not counted against ceiling.
Category-Workers hired "on the spot" without formal appointment procedures for short intervals of time to cope with fire, flood, or other extreme emergencies. How Reported - Not counted against ceiling.
Category-All State, local and Indian Tribal Government employees and academic personnel who are: (1) on detail to Intergovernmental Personnel Act (IPA) mobility assignments with Federal agencies; and (2) on IPA mobility assignments who have received Federal appointments under 5 U.S.C. 3374(a)(1) for assignments of 30 days or less. How Reported - Not counted against ceiling.
Category-All Federal employees who are: (1) on detail to State, local, and Indian Tribal Governments or institutions of higher education, or other eligible organizations to which an assignment is made reimburses the assigning Federal agency for at least 50 percent of an assigned employee's salary during the assignment; and (2) on leave without pay while on assignment with State, local, and Indian Tribal Governments, institutions of higher education, or other eligible organizations for assignments more than 30 days. How Reported - Not counted against ceiling.
Category-Employees who receive on-the-job injury with approval for worker's compensation from Department of Labor whose leave approval date is scheduled to exceed or actually exceeds 30 calendar days. How Reported - Not counted against ceiling.
Category-Employees on leave with pay pending disability retirement whose application for retirement has been approved by the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) and whose use of sick leave after approval date actually exceeds, or is scheduled to exceed 30 days. How Reported - Not counted against ceiling.
Category-Employees on leave with pay pending separation by optional retirement who meet all five of the following criteria: (1) has to retire because of ill health; (2) is on sick leave and employing agency has received a licensed physician's certification covering the entire period for which the employee has requested sick leave; (3) meets age and service requirement for retirement; (4) SF 2801, Application for Retirement, has been submitted for retirement to become effective when sick leave expires; and (5) use of sick leave after approval date exceeds or is scheduled to exceed 30 calendar days. How Reported - Not counted against ceiling.
Category-AID appointments. How Reported - Count against ceiling based on tenure group code and work schedule (see definitions for full-time permanent and other employment).
Category-Seasonal Employees. How Reported - Counted for all paid straight time hours during year either "full-time permanent" or "other" depending upon appointment and schedule, e.g., permanent seasonals who work full-time during the season are charged to full-time permanent; part-time seasonals who work during the season are charged to "other;" intermittent seasonals who work during the season are charged to "other."
Category-60 day emergency appointments. How Reported - Count against ceiling as "other.".