Executive Order 7916

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Signed by President  Franklin D. Roosevelt  Friday, June 24, 1938 Federal Register  page & date: FR 1526, Tuesday, June 28, 1938
See the Notes section for a list of Executive Orders affected by or related to the issuance of this Executive Order.

By virtue of and pursuant to the authority vested In me by the Constitution, by Section 1753 of the Revised Statutes (U.S.C., Title 5, Section 631), by the Civil Service Act of January 16, 1883 (22 Stat. 403), and as President of the United States, it is hereby ordered as follows:


Section 1. Effective February 1, 1939, all positions in the Executive civil service, including positions in corporations wholly owned or controlled by the United States, which are not now in the competitive classified civil service and which are not exempted therefrom by statute, except (1) policy-determining positions and (2) other positions which special circumstances require should be exempted, are covered into the competitive classified civil service: Provided, That this section shall not be deemed to apply to positions filled by appointment by and with the advice and consent of the Senate; And provided further, That no positions shall be exempted from the competitive classified civil service under clauses (1) and (2) above except such as shall be designated in subsequent Executive orders issued after investigation showing the necessity and justification for such exemptions. This section shall also apply to positions affected by statutes which exempt them from the competitive classified civil service but authorize the President in his discretion to cover them into such service.


Section 2. Within ninety days from the date of this order the heads of all departments and independent establishments, including corporations wholly owned or controlled by the United States, whose personnel or any part thereof is affected by Section 1 of this order, shall certify to the Civil Service Commission for transmission by it with its recommendations to the President the positions in their respective departments or agencies which in their opinion should be excepted from the provisions of Section 1 of this order as policy-determining or for other reasons.


Section 3. The incumbent of any position which is covered into the competitive classified civil service by Section 1 of this order shall acquire a classified civil service status (1) upon recommendation by the head of the agency concerned and certification by such head to the Civil Service Commission that such incumbent was in the service on the date of this order and has rendered satisfactory service for not less than six months, and (2) upon passing a suitable noncompetitlve examination prescribed by the Civil Service Commission under the civil service rules: Provided, That he is a citizen of the United States and is not disqualified by any provision of law or civil service rule. Any such incumbent who fails to meet the foregoing requirements of this section shall be separated from the service within thirty days (exclusive of leave to which he is entitled) after the Commission reports that he is ineligible for classification unless the head of the agency concerned certifies to the Commission that such incumbent has rendered satisfactory service and that he should be retained although without acquiring a competitive classified status.


Section 4. New appointments to any positions covered into the competitive classified civil service by Section 1 of this order shall not be affected by the provisions of said section until the Civil Service Commission shall have established registers of eligibles for such positions as a result of examinations held in accordance with the civil service rules and regulations and with this order.


Section 5. The Civil Service Commission shall, subject to the Civil Service Act, the rules thereunder, and the Classification Act of 1923, as amended, initiate, supervise, and enforce a system as uniform as practicable, for the recruitment, examination, certification, promotion from grade to grade, transfer, and reinstatement of employees in the classified civil service, other than employees therein excepted by Executive orders, issued pursuant to clauses (1) and (2) of Section 1 hereof, which system shall, so far as practicable, be competitive, with due regard to prior experience and service.


Section 6. Effective not later than February 1, 1939, the heads of the Executive departments and the heads of such independent establishments and agencies subject to the civil service laws and rules as the President shall designate, shall establish in their respective departments or establishments a division of personnel supervision and management, at the head of which shall be appointed a director of personnel qualified by training and experience, from among those whose names are ^certified for such appointment by the Civil Service Commission pursuant to such competitive tests and requirements as the Civil Service Commission shall prescribe: Provided, however, that if the head of a department or establishment requests authority to appoint a presently acting personnel or appointment director, officer, or clerk, as such director of personnel, such personnel or appointment director, officer, or clerk may be appointed upon certification by the Civil Service Commission that he is qualified therefor after passing such tests as the Civil Service Commission shall prescribe. It shall be the duty of each director of personnel to act as liaison officer in personnel matters between his department or establishment and the Civil Service Commission, and to make recommendations to the departmental budget officer with respect to estimates and expenditures for personnel. He shall supervise the functions of appointment, assignment, service rating, and training of employees in bi-department or establishment, under direction of the head thereof, and shall initiate and supervise such programs of personnel training and management as the head thereof after consultation with the Civil Service Commission shall approve, including the establishment of a system of service ratings for departmental and field forces outside of the Classification Act of 1923, as amended, which shall conform as nearly as practicable with the system established under the said Act. Subject to the approval of the head of such department or establishment and of the Civil Service Commission he shall establish means for the hearing of grievances of employees and present appropriate recommendations for the settlement thereof to the head of his department or establishment. He shall serve as a member of the Council of Personnel Administration hereinafter established, and perform such other functions as the head of the department or agency after consultation with the Civil Service Commission shall prescribe. A director of personnel may be transferred from one department or establishment to another from time to time, subject to the provisions of the civil service rules and with the approval of the head of the agency to which transfer is proposed.


Section 7. Effective February 1, 1939, there is established a Council of Personnel Administration consisting of the directors of personnel of the several departments and independent establishments, one additional representative of the Bureau of the Budget, one additional representative of the Civil Service Commission, and such additional members as the President shall designate. The President shall designate one of the members of the Council to act as chairman thereof, and the Council may designate an executive director. The Council shall advise and assist the President and the Commission in the protection and improvement of the merit system, and recommend from time to time to the President or the Commission needed changes in procedure, rules, or regulations. When directed so to do by the President or the Commission, the Council shall hold hearings and conduct investigations with respect to alleged abuses and proposed changes. The Council shall carry on programs of study to coordinate and perfect the executive personnel service in all its branches, and shall report upon the progress of personnel administration throughout the service. The Council shall have an executive committee of five members: one representing the ten executive departments to be chosen by the Directors of Personnel thereof; one representing the independent establishments and agencies to be chosen by the Directors of Personnel thereof; one representing the Bureau of the Budget to be chosen by the Director thereof; one representing the Civil Service Commission to be chosen by it; and one to be designated by the President. Executive Order No. 5612 of April 25, 1931, is hereby revoked.


Section 8. The Civil Service Commission shall, in cooperation with operating departments and establishments, the Office of Education, and public and private institutions of learning, establish practical training courses for employees in the departmental and field services of the classified civil service, and may by regulations provide credits in transfer and promotion examinations for satisfactory completion of one or more of such training courses.


Section 9. Schedules A and B of the Civil Service Rules, as presently existing, relating to positions excepted from examination and positions which may be filled upon noncompetitive examination, will be superseded by schedules designating policy-determining positions and other positions which special circumstances require should be exempted, which schedules will be set forth in subsequent Executive orders as provided in section 1 hereof.

Signature of Franklin D. Roosevelt
Franklin D. Roosevelt 
The White House,
June 24, 1938.

Notes[edit]

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This work is in the public domain in the United States because it is a work of the United States federal government (see 17 U.S.C. 105).