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Hazardous Duty Pay or Environmental Differential Pay for Potential Exposure to Anthrax Questions and Answers

Thursday, October 18, 2001
PQA 2001-04
MEMORANDUM FOR: 
Heads Of Executive Departments And Agencies
From: 
United States Office of Personnel Management
Subject: 
Hazardous Duty Pay or Environmental Differential Pay for Potential Exposure to Anthrax Questions and Answers

Also see - Additional Questions and Answers on Potential Exposure to Anthrax

Q1: Can employees receive hazardous duty pay or environmental differential pay for potential exposure to anthrax?

A1: No. There is no authority to pay hazardous duty pay or environmental differential pay for potential exposure to anthrax. To pay hazardous duty pay or environmental differential pay, a local installation must find that there is credible evidence that anthrax is in the workplace and that an employee was exposed to anthrax.

Q2: What is hazardous duty pay? What is environmental differential pay?

A2: Hazardous duty pay is additional pay for the performance of hazardous duty or duty involving physical hardship. Hazardous duty pay is payable to General Schedule (GS) employees covered by chapter 51 and subchapter III of chapter 53 of title 5, United States Code. Prevailing rate (wage) employees are eligible to receive environmental differential pay in certain circumstances under a separate statutory provision (5 U.S.C. 5343(c)(4)).

Q3: What is considered hazardous duty or duty involving a physical hardship?

A3: Hazardous duty is duty performed under circumstances in which an accident could result in serious injury or death. Duty involving a physical hardship is duty that may not in itself be hazardous, but causes extreme physical discomfort or distress and is not adequately alleviated by protective or mechanical devices.

Q4: Where can I find the various hazardous duty pay and environmental differentials?

A4: Hazardous duty pay differentials are established under 5 CFR 550, appendix A to subpart I. You can find the Code of Federal Regulations on our web site at www.opm.gov/cfr/index.htm. Additional information about hazardous duty pay for GS employees can be found at www.opm.gov/oca/pay/html/hazduty.htm.

Pay administration rules for environmental differentials are found in 5 CFR 532.511. Environmental differential pay categories are listed in appendix A to subpart E of 5 CFR part 532. Additional information about environmental differentials for prevailing rate employees can be found at www.opm.gov/oca/wage/APPFUND.HTM.
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