UNCLASSIFIED (U)

3 FAH-1 H-4800 
DEPARTMENT AWARDS PROGRAM PROCEDURES

3 FAH-1 H-4810

ADMINISTRATION Of AWARDS PROGRAM

(CT:POH-242;   03-12-2021)
(Office of Origin: GTM/PE)

3 FAH-1 H-4811  DEFINITIONS

(TL:POH-079;   01-10-2002) 
(Uniform State/USAID)
(Foreign Service, Civil Service, and Foreign Service National Employees)

The terms used in 3 FAM 4800 and this chapter pertaining to the Department’s Award Program are explained below.

3 FAH-1 H-4811.1  Awards Committees

(TL:POH-079;   01-10-2002)
(Uniform State/USAID)
(Foreign Service, Civil Service, and Foreign Service National Employees)

a. The Joint Country Awards Committee is an advisory group established by the chief of mission to review nominations for awards for the staff of the agencies under that official's jurisdiction.  The Committee will normally include members from the agencies represented at post.

b. The area awards committee is an advisory group established by the head of an area to review award nominations for employees under that official’s jurisdiction.

c.  Area awards officers should ensure that, where possible, the composition of members on the awards committees is diverse in terms of Service, race, gender, and ethnic origin.

3 FAH-1 H-4811.2  Employee Contribution

(TL:POH-079;   01-10-2002)
(Uniform State/USAID)
(Foreign Service, Civil Service, and Foreign Service National Employees)

An innovation, invention, special act, or other personal effort, which contributes, to the efficiency, economy, or other improvement of Government operations, or a special achievement in the public interest related to an employee's official employment.

3 FAH-1 H-4811.3  Group Award

(TL:POH-079;   01-10-2002)
(Uniform State/USAID)
(Foreign Service, Civil Service, and Foreign Service National Employees)

An award granted to two or more persons for their participation with the same contribution.

3 FAH-1 H-4811.4  Interagency Award

(TL:POH-079;   01-10-2002)
(Uniform State/USAID)
(Foreign Service, Civil Service, and Foreign Service National Employees)

An award granted by the head of one agency for a contribution from an employee or employees of another agency.

3 FAH-1 H-4811.5  Non-Governmental Award

(TL:POH-079;   01-10-2002)
(Uniform State/USAID)
(Foreign Service, Civil Service, and Foreign Service National Employees)

Awards presented annually to U.S. Government employees by non-governmental organizations.

3 FAH-1 H-4811.6  Participating Agency Service Agreements Personnel (PASA)

(TL:POH-079;   01-10-2002)
(Uniform State/USAID)
(Foreign Service, Civil Service, and Foreign Service National Employees)

PASA personnel are U.S. Government employees other than those from USAID whose agency has an agreement with USAID for specific services or support tied to a specific program goal to be performed within a definite time frame.

3 FAH-1 H-4812  AWARDS ADMINISTRATION IN WASHINGTON

3 FAH-1 H-4812.1  Department Awards Committee

(CT:POH-100;   08-31-2004)
(Uniform State/USAID)
(Foreign Service, Civil Service, and Foreign Service National Employees)

The Department Awards Committee will:

(1)  Periodically review and evaluate the effectiveness of the Awards Program;

(2)  Approve and/or disapprove nominations for the Secretary's Award, the Award for Heroism, the Distinguished Honor Award and any awards managed by non-governmental organizations;

(3)  Approve and/or disapprove suggestion cash awards over $3,000 to $10,000 and recommend to the Office of Personnel Management such award nominations over $10,000;

(4)  Request further justification for an award or recommend a more appropriate form of recognition for any award nomination reviewed by the Committee;

(5)  Approve and/or disapprove nominations for non-Governmental awards; and

(6)  Approve and/or disapprove the establishment of new Department-level annual awards.

3 FAH-1 H-4812.2  Area Awards Committee

(CT:POH-239;   08-13-2020)
(State Only)
(Foreign Service, Civil Service, and Foreign Service National Employees)

The Area Awards Committee will:

(1)  Approve and/or disapprove nominations for Superior and Meritorious Honor Awards, recognition awards, and cash awards for individuals and groups in the organizational area and posts abroad, as applicable.  The Area Awards Officer will forward approved nominations to GTM/EX for inclusion in the employee's Official Performance Folder;

(2)  Serve in an advisory capacity to the bureau’s assistant secretary or equivalent and may refer honor award recommendations, as appropriate, to the Executive Secretary, Department Awards Committee;

(3)  Approve and/or disapprove cash award nominations up to $3,000.  This authority may be re-delegated in writing to supervisors for amounts not to exceed $500;

(4)  Support functions of the Joint Country Awards Committees (regional bureaus only) for posts abroad by approving and/or disapproving award nominations submitted by the posts; and

(5)  Establish administrative controls for the awards program within the bureau and maintain records of all award actions.

3 FAH-1 H-4812.3  Department Awards Officer

(TL:POH-079;   01-10-2002)
(State Only)
(Foreign Service, Civil Service, and Foreign Service National Employees)

The Department Awards Officer will:

(1)  Plan, organize, evaluate, and publicize the Department-wide program;

(2)  Serve as Executive Secretary of the Department Awards Committee;

(3)  Prepare and circulate announcements of non-Governmental awards, submit the nominations to the Department Awards Committee, and forward approved nominations to the sponsoring organization;

(4)  Submit to the Department Awards Committee for final action nominations for honor awards, and proposals for new Department-level annual awards;

(5)  Authorize payment of certain cash awards; and

(6)  Maintain liaison with the Office of Personnel Management and other Government agencies in administering the Government-wide Awards Program.

3 FAH-1 H-4813  AWARDS ADMINISTRATION AT POSTS ABROAD

3 FAH-1 H-4813.1  The Chief of Mission

(TL:POH-079;   01-10-2002)
(Uniform State/USAID)
(Foreign Service, Civil Service, and Foreign Service National Employees)

The chief of mission will:

(1)  Approve and/or disapprove nominations for the Meritorious Honor Award for State and USAID employees assigned to a post; 

(2)  Forward to the appropriate area awards committee for final action nominations for the Superior Honor Award; and

(3)  Approve cash award nominations for amounts of $2,000 or less.  The chief of mission may delegate in writing, as appropriate, approval authority for amounts not to exceed $500.

3 FAH-1 H-4813.2  Joint Country Awards Committee

(TL:POH-079;   01-10-2002)
(Uniform State/USAID)
(Foreign Service, Civil Service, and Foreign Service National Employees)

The Joint Country Awards Committee will:

(1)  Publicize the Joint Awards Program at posts in the country;

(2)  Approve and/or disapprove award nominations for which the chief of mission has delegated approval authority;

(3)  Review and make recommendations to the chief of mission on those awards for which the chief of mission has approval authority;

(4)  Refer award nominations requiring higher level approval to the appropriate Washington office; and

(5)  Establish administrative controls of the awards program within the post and/or country and maintain a record of all award actions.

3 FAH-1 H-4814  PROCUREMENT OF FORMS, CERTIFICATES, MEDALS AND EMBLEMS

3 FAH-1 H-4814.1  Forms

(CT:POH-198;   10-13-2017)
(State Only)
(Foreign Service, Civil Service, and Foreign Service National Employees)

Form DS-0066, Nomination for Award, and form DS-1952, Extra Mile Award, are requisitioned through normal procurement channels.  Form DS-0066 and form DS-1952 are available through the Department’s myData site.

3 FAH-1 H-4814.2  Certificates, Medals, and Emblems

3 FAH-1 H-4814.2-1  Abroad

(CT:POH-208;   07-06-2018)
(State Only/USAID)
(Foreign Service, Civil Service, and Foreign Service National Employees)

a. Safe Driving certificates and lapel emblems (indicating one to five years of safe driving) may be ordered by memorandum or telegram from A/OPR.

b. Other certificates, medals, and emblems are requisitioned through the appropriate regional bureau.  The post must submit the name and grade level of the recipient, and award approval date.  Posts may request that the regional bureau have the medal suitably engraved.

c.  For USAID, requisition is made through regular procurement channels.  The request should include type of certificate and number required, type of medal and number required, and type of lapel emblem - button or pin - and number required.

3 FAH-1 H-4814.2-2  Department

(CT:POH-198;   10-13-2017)
(State Only)
(Foreign Service, Civil Service, and Foreign Service National Employees)

a. Safe Driving certificates and lapel emblems (indicating 1 to 5 years' safe driving) may be ordered by memorandum from A/OPR.

b. Certificates for honor, recognition, cash, and length-of-service awards are procured from the Global Publishing Services (A/GIS/GPS).  GPS provides engraving of certificates upon request.

c.  Honor award medal sets are requisitioned from the Department Awards Officer.

3 FAH-1 H-4815  PRESENTATION OF AWARDS

(TL:POH-079;   01-10-2002)
(Uniform State/USAID)
(Foreign Service, Civil Service, and Foreign Service National Employees)

a. The presentation of awards provides an opportunity to demonstrate the high regard and appreciation for employee contributions.  Award ceremonies should be held as soon as practicable after approval.  The chief of mission or assistant secretary, as appropriate, or the designee, will present the awards.

b. Congratulatory letters may accompany awards and/or suitable certificates signed by an appropriate official.

c.  In bestowing group awards, the head of the group will generally receive the certificate (no medal is given for group awards) from either the chief of mission or assistant secretary, as appropriate, or the designee.  Group members may receive either a certificate or a congratulatory letter.

3 FAH-1 H-4816  RECORDS AND REPORTING

3 FAH-1 H-4816.1  General Records

(CT:POH-242;   03-12-2021)
(Uniform State/USAID)
(Foreign Service, Civil Service, and Foreign Service National Employees)

a. Area awards officers shall be responsible for maintaining complete and accurate documentation of awards.  Such documentation is necessary to substantiate expenditure of funds to provide efficient and economical processing and to ensure meaningful program evaluation and inspection.

b. Records shall reflect the status and disposition of each cash award initiated and processed, including complete justification for final action taken.

c.  Records of individual and group awards shall be maintained for a minimum of two years.  Thereafter, records are handled in accordance with the agency's records disposal program (see 5 FAM 430).

d. The Bureau of Global Talent Management reports cash awards to the Office of Personnel Management.

3 FAH-1 H-4816.2  Personnel Folders

(TL:POH-198;   10-13-2017)
(Uniform State/USAID)
(Foreign Service and Civil Service Employees)

a. Except as provided in paragraph d below, approved award nominations are included in the Official Performance Folder (Foreign Service) or Employee Performance Folder (Civil Service).  For U.S. Government personnel, the original Form DS-0066, Nomination for Award, is forwarded by the appropriate bureau to:

State

GTM/EX/RIM

USAID

Office of Human Resources (M/HR)

    Copies of approved award nominations for Foreign Service National employees of all agencies are maintained at the post.

b. Copies of group and cash award congratulatory letters for U.S. Government personnel are also forwarded for inclusion in the employee's Official Performance Folder; for   Foreign Service National employees the copies are maintained at the post.

c.  For State Only:  Copies of annual award nominations for employees identified as a recipient or runner-up are placed in the employee’s Official Performance Folder.

d. For State Only:  Approved recognition award nominations are not included in the Official Performance Folder of U.S. Foreign Service personnel.  They are, however, included in the Employee Performance Folder of Civil Service personnel.  The Extra Mile and Time Off From Duty awards are not included in the Official Performance Folder of U.S. Foreign Service personnel.  They are included in the Employee Performance Folder of Civil Service personnel.

3 FAH-1 H-4817  COMPUTATION OF CASH AWARDS

3 FAH-1 H-4817.1  Tangible Benefits

(TL:POH-079;   01-10-2002)
(Uniform State/USAID)
(Foreign Service, Civil Service, and Foreign Service National Employees)

Tangible benefits are those, which may be objectively measured.  In assigning a value to any employee contribution, whether of the suggestion, performance, or special act type, every effort shall be made to determine the tangible benefits that may accrue.  For example, a savings of 15 minutes in a particular operation, elimination of 10,000 pieces of paper, and extension of life of equipment by six months would be converted into dollars to arrive at the estimated tangible benefits.  A cash award is not granted unless the tangible benefits have a value of at least $250.  The amount of a cash award will normally be based on the estimated tangible benefits for the first full year of operation in accordance with the following scale, not to exceed $2,000 for other than suggestion cash awards:

                                Scale for Measurable Benefits

Estimated 1st Year Benefits to Government

Amount of Award

Up to $10,000

10% of benefits

$10,001 - $100,000

$1,000 for the first $10,000 plus 3% of benefits over $10,000

$100,001 or more

$3,700 for the first $100,000 plus 0.5% of benefits over$100,000

(1)  A maximum of $2,000 for other than suggestion cash awards can be paid by a State Area Awards Officer, and in USAID by the Incentive Awards Committee.  For State Only: suggestion cash awards for the Department Awards Committee must approve amounts over $2,000 and up to $10,000.  The Office of Personnel Management must approve such awards over $10,000.

(2)  State and USAID can pay a maximum of $1,000 for other than suggestion cash awards at the post.

(3)  For USAID, the Employee Services Division, Office of Financial Management (M/FM/ESD), pays cash awards to U.S. Citizen employees; Foreign Service National employees are paid at the post.

(4)  When there are substantial non-recurring costs to install an employee contribution, which will be useful for a number of years, and if the amount of the award on the basis of the next first-year benefits would result in an inadequate reward, the award may be based on an average of estimated net benefits over a period of years.

3 FAH-1 H-4817.2  Intangible Benefits

(TL:POH-079;   01-10-2002)
(Uniform State/USAID)
(Foreign Service, Civil Service, and Foreign Service National Employees)

a. A cash award may also be made when an employee contribution does not lend itself to appraisal on the basis of tangible benefits.  The amount of such a cash award is determined on the basis of its value to the agency’s operations and importance to the programs affected.  There is no substitute for good judgment in determining the amount of a cash award.  However, the minimum cash award of $25 is not granted unless the contribution compares favorably with those receiving the minimum cash award for tangible benefits.

b. The criteria used for determining degree of benefit from contributions having intangible benefits are as follows:

(1)  Exceptional Benefit:  Contribution materially affecting substantial or significant phases of the agency’s overall program or of outstanding services in the public interest;

(2)  High Benefit:  Contribution affecting significant phases of the agency’s operations or which involve major changes in methods;

(3)  Substantial Benefit:    Contribution which is an important improvement affecting minor programs, such as safety contributions which prevent disabling injuries or heavy damage to property, or contributions involving important changes in methods or property; and

(4)  Moderate Benefits: Contribution limited in scope either as to number of employees or nature of program affected.

c.  The degree of intangible benefits from contributions made for cash awards other than for suggestions determine the amount of cash to be awarded to an employee or group of employees, not to exceed $2,000 for an individual.








Extent of Benefits

Amount of Award

Immediate work area

$150 - $500

Several divisions, sections, bureaus, or comparable area

$500 - $1,000

Department/Agency

$1,000 - $2,000

d. For State Only:  The following scale applies to cash awards for suggestions.

Scale of Recommended Award Amounts Based on Intangible Benefits

Suggestion Awards

EXTENT OF  APPLICATION

       

LIMITED

EXTENDED

BROAD

GENERAL

 

 

 

 

 

Value of Benefit MODERATE VALUE

Affects functions mission, or personnel of one facility regional area, or an organizational element of head quarters.

Affects a small area of science or technology

Affects functions mission, or personnel of an entire regional area or bureau

Affects an important area of science or technology

Affects functions mission, or personnel of several regional areas or an entire department or agency.

Affects an extensive area of science or technology.

Affects functions mission, or personnel of more than one department and/or /agency, or is in the public interest throughout the Nation and beyond

 

Change or modification of an operating principle or procedure with limited impact or use.

 

$25 - $125

 

125 - $325

 

 

$325- $650

 

 

$650 - $1300

SUBSTANTIAL VALUE.

 

 

 

 

Substantial change or modification of procedures. An important improvement to the value of a product, activity, program, or service to the public

 

 

$125 -$325

 

 

$325-$650

 

 

$650-$1300

 

 

$1300 -$3150

HIGH VALUE

 

 

 

 

Complete revision of a basic principal or procedure; a highly significant improvement to the value of a product or service.

 

 

$325 -$650

 

 

$650-$1300

 

 

$1300-$3150

 

 

$3150-$6300


EXCEPTIONAL VALUE

 

 

 

 

Initiation of a new principle or major procedure; a superior improvement to the quality of a critical product, activity, program, or service to the public.

$650-$1300

$1300-$3150

$3150-$6300

$6300 - $10,0001

An award of more than $10,000 and up to $25,000 may be granted with the approval of OPM.  An award above $25,000 may be granted with the approval of the President.  Such awards should normally not exceed $50,000.

3 FAH-1 H-4817.3  Tangible Plus Intangible Benefits

(TL:POH-079;   01-10-2002)
(Uniform State/USAID)
(Foreign Service, Civil Service, and Foreign Service National Employees)

Contributions may result in a combination of tangible and intangible benefits.  In such cases, the amount of the award based on the tangible benefits will be computed first, and the appropriate amount for intangible benefits will be added.  In every case, the record must reflect the basis on which the award was computed.

3 FAH-1 H-4818  PAYMENT OF AWARDS

3 FAH-1 H-4818.1  Payment of Awards

(TL:POH-079;   01-10-2002)
(Uniform State/USAID)
(Foreign Service, Civil Service, and Foreign Service National Employees)

a. Awards may take the form of cash, honor awards, both, or an honor award and a QSI or MSI.  Suggestions are normally rewarded by cash payments only.

b. A cash payment for an employee suggestion may be made only when proof of present use or definite future use is provided to the voucher certifying officer, in no case later than two years from the date of a decision approving the adoption of the suggestion.

c.  For State Only:  Cash awards for suggestions, which benefit the Department and other agencies, are charged to the appropriate Washington allotments of the agencies involved.

3 FAH-1 H-4818.2  Abroad

3 FAH-1 H-4818.2-1  State

(CT:POH-100;   08-31-2004)
(Uniform State/USAID)
(Foreign Service, Civil Service, and Foreign Service National Employees)

a. All cash awards except those for suggestions are chargeable to the appropriate post allotment where the individual is assigned.  The Bureau of Human Resources funds cash awards for suggestions.

b. Cash awards chargeable to post funds are paid through the Consolidated American Payroll Processing System (CAPPS) system.  A telegram is forwarded by post to the Charleston Financial Service Center (CFSC) requesting payment of the award.  It will include verification that the chief of mission approved the award, the recipient’s name and Social Security number, gross amount of the award, and appropriate fiscal data.  A copy of the approved award nomination shall be forwarded to the CFSC at the time the telegram is sent.  The Extra Mile Award is vouchered on Form DS-1952, Extra Mile Award.  Cash award checks are returned to the authorizing officer for delivery to the payee unless specifically requested that payment be made with the salary disbursement.

c.  Payments to Foreign Service National employees must be made in local currency not to exceed the award amount stated in U.S. dollars.  Appropriate fiscal data will be provided to the post for cash awards for suggestions for FSN employees.

3 FAH-1 H-4818.2-2  USAID

(TL:POH-079;   01-10-2002)
(USAID Only)
(Foreign Service Only)

a. All cash awards are chargeable to the allotment from which the employee's salary is paid.

b. Cash awards are vouchered on supplemental payrolls.  Actual presentation of cash awards will conform to the procedures established by the chief of mission at the post or by USAID in Washington.

3 FAH-1 H-4818.3  Washington

(CT:POH-239;   08-13-2020)
(State Only)
(Foreign Service and Civil Service)

a. Cash awards authorized for payment in the Department are vouchered on Form DS-0066, Nomination for Award.  Payment for the Extra Mile Award is vouchered on Form DS-1952, Extra Mile Award.  Approved copies of Forms DS-0066 and DS-1952 are to be forwarded to the Office of Domestic Financial Operations (CGFS/FO) for payment.  Payment will be either in the form of a separate check or gift checks, or included with the salary disbursement.

b. Cash awards for suggestions are funded by the Bureau of Global Talent Management.  Payment is vouchered on Form SF-1034, Public Voucher for Purchases and Services Other than Personal, and prepared by GTM/PE.  Approved copies of Form SF-1034 are to be forwarded by GTM/PE to the Office of Domestic Financial Operations (CGFS/FO) for payment.  Payment will be either in the form of a separate check or included with the salary disbursement.

3 FAH-1 H-4818.4  Income Tax Obligations

(CT:POH-100;   08-31-2004)
(Uniform State)
(Foreign Service and Civil Service Employees)

All cash awards presented to U.S. personnel are considered income by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and subject to withholding and other payroll taxes.

3 FAH-1 H-4819  UNASSIGNED

UNCLASSIFIED (U)