The Office of Personnel Management just posted on its web site questions and answers for federal agencies regarding administration of new recruitment, relocation and retention incentive authorities in response to questions received from agencies.
The new recruitment, relocation and retention flexibilities given to agencies were part of the Federal Workforce Flexibility Act of 2004 – which became effective May 1, 2005.
Questions listed on the site include:
– Since it will take time for agencies to establish new plans for using the new recruitment, relocation, and retention incentive authorities, may agencies use their current recruitment and relocation bonus and retention allowance plans in the meantime? When may agencies start using the new recruitment, relocation, and retention incentive authorities?
– If an agency adopts its previous recruitment and relocation bonus and retention allowance plans as its interim recruitment, relocation, and retention incentive plans, may it use locality rates to compute newly authorized incentives, since this is a new requirement that is not reflected in the agency’s previous plans?
– Should an agency use locality rates to compute retention allowances authorized before May 1, 2005?
– Since locality rates cannot be used to compute retention allowances authorized before May 1, 2005, the retention allowance for an employee whose special rate was terminated effective May 1, 2005, has been reduced. Can agencies increase the retention allowance to offset this reduction?