USE OF ADMINISTRATIVELY UNCONTROLLABLE OVERTIME
IN THE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE
Audit Report 97-09, (1/97)
TABLE OF CONTENTS
FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
POLICIES, EXTENT AND COSTS OF AUO
ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA AND PAYMENT OF AUO
STATEMENT ON COMPLIANCE WITH LAWS AND REGULATIONS
SCOPE AND METHODOLOGY
APPENDIX I - AUO POLICIES
APPENDIX II - RESULTS OF PRE-SITE WORK SURVEY
APPENDIX III - INS EFFORTS TO CORRECT PRIOR WEAKNESSES
APPENDIX IV - REVIEW OF EARNED PERCENTAGES
APPENDIX V - SCHEDULE OF DOLLAR-RELATED FINDINGS
APPENDIX VI - INS COMMENTS ON THE AUDIT RECOMMENDATIONS
APPENDIX VII - ANALYSIS AND SUMMARY OF ACTIONS NECESSARY TO CLOSE REPORT
Administratively Uncontrollable Overtime (AUO) is paid to employees in positions in which the hours of duty cannot be controlled administratively, and which requires substantial amounts of irregular, unscheduled overtime duty with the employee generally being responsible for recognizing, without supervision, circumstances which require the employee to remain on duty. Eligible employees are certified to earn up to 25 percent of their base pay as AUO. On September 11, 1996, the Senate passed the Treasury, Postal Service, and General Government Appropriations Act, 1997 which required Offices of Inspectors General to perform audits of AUO in their departments. Our report is structured to address the objectives required by this legislation.
The Department of Justice (DOJ or Department) paid about 6,900 employees approximately $57 million in AUO in FY 1996. Virtually all of the AUO recipients were employees of the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS), mostly from the Border Patrol. Over 6,600 employees in INS field units earned $54 million (95 percent) in AUO, and approximately 300 INS Headquarters employees earned nearly $3 million in AUO. In brief, our audit determined the following:
INS policies agreed with established statutory, regulatory and Department policies regarding AUO.
By statute employees may receive no less than 10 percent and no more than 25 percent of the rate of basic pay for AUO. Of the employees we sampled receiving AUO, about 83 percent were certified to receive 25 percent.
INS records did not substantiate that overtime worked was uncontrollable for 95 percent of employees we sampled. Supervisors did not assess the actual duties of the employees to determine if the overtime worked was uncontrollable. As further indication of the controllable nature of the work performed, we found patterns of employees reporting the same amount of AUO every day.
Ten percent of AUO recipients were grades GS-13 and above who earned over 16 percent of all AUO funds.
The details of our work, which was conducted in November 1996, are contained in the Findings and Recommendations section of the report. Our audit scope and methodology are contained on page 13.