(a)(1) Subject to subsections (b), (c), and (d), when the Secretary determines it to be necessary in order to obtain or retain the services of persons described in paragraph (2), the Secretary may increase the minimum, intermediate, or maximum rates of basic pay authorized under applicable statutes and regulations. Any increase in such rates of basic pay—
(A) may be made on a nationwide basis, local basis, or other geographic basis; and
(B) may be made—
(i) for one or more of the grades listed in the schedules in subsection (b)(1) of section 7404 of this title;
(ii) for one or more of the health personnel fields within such grades; or
(iii) for one or more of the grades of the General Schedule under section 5332 of title 5.
(2) Paragraph (1) applies to the following:
(A) Individuals employed in positions listed in paragraphs (1) and (3) of section 7401 of this title.
(B) Health-care personnel who—
(i) are employed in the Administration (other than administrative, clerical, and physical plant maintenance and protective services employees);
(ii) are paid under the General Schedule pursuant to section 5332 of title 5;
(iii) are determined by the Secretary to be providing either direct patient-care services or services incident to direct patient-care services; and
(iv) would not otherwise be available to provide medical care and treatment for veterans.
(C) Employees who are Department police officers providing services under section 902 of this title.
(b) Increases in rates of basic pay may be made under subsection (a) only in order—
(1) to provide pay in an amount competitive with, but not exceeding, the amount of the same type of pay paid to the same category of personnel at non-Federal facilities in the same labor market;
(2) to achieve adequate staffing at particular facilities; or
(3) to recruit personnel with specialized skills, especially those with skills which are especially difficult or demanding.
(c)(1) Subject to paragraph (2), the amount of any increase under subsection (a) in the minimum rate for any grade may not (except in the case of nurse anesthetists, licensed practical nurses, licensed vocational nurses, nursing positions otherwise covered by title 5, pharmacists, and licensed physical therapists) exceed the maximum rate of basic pay (excluding any locality-based comparability payment under section 5304 of title 5 or similar provision of law) for the grade or level by more than 30 percent.
(2) No rate may be established under this section in excess of the rate of basic pay payable for level IV of the Executive Schedule.
(d)(1) In the exercise of the authority provided in subsection (a) with respect to personnel described in subparagraph (B) or (C) of paragraph (2) of that subsection to increase the rates of basic pay for any category of personnel not appointed under subchapter I, the Secretary shall, not less than 45 days before the effective date of a proposed increase, notify the President of the Secretary's intention to provide such an increase.
(2) Such a proposed increase shall not take effect if, before the effective date of the proposed increase, the President disapproves such increase and provides the appropriate committees of the Congress with a written statement of the President's reasons for such disapproval.
(3) If, before that effective date, the President approves such increase, the Secretary may advance the effective date to any date not earlier than the date of the President's approval.
(Added Pub. L. 102–40, title IV, §401(b)(4), May 7, 1991, 105 Stat. 234; amended Pub. L. 102–83, §2(c)(7), Aug. 6, 1991, 105 Stat. 402; Pub. L. 102–405, title II, §201, title III, §302(c)(1), Oct. 9, 1992, 106 Stat. 1983, 1984; Pub. L. 106–419, title II, §203, Nov. 1, 2000, 114 Stat. 1841; Pub. L. 111–163, title VI, §601(l), May 5, 2010, 124 Stat. 1172.)
Level IV of the Executive Schedule, referred to in subsec. (c)(2), is set out in section 5315 of Title 5, Government Organization and Employees.
Provisions similar to those in this section were contained in section 4107(g) of this title prior to the repeal of that section as part of the complete revision of chapter 73 of this title by Pub. L. 102–40.
2010—Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 111–163 amended subsec. (c) generally. Prior to amendment, subsec. (c) read as follows:
"(c)(1) The amount of any increase under subsection (a) in the maximum rate for any grade may not (except in the case of nurse anesthetists, pharmacists, and licensed physical therapists) exceed by two times the amount by which the maximum for such grade (under applicable provisions of law other than this subsection) exceeds the minimum for such grade (under applicable provisions of law other than this subsection), and the maximum rate as so increased may not exceed the rate paid for individuals serving as Assistant Under Secretary for Health.
"(2) Whenever the amount of an increase under subsection (a) results in a rate of basic pay for a position being equal to or greater than the amount that is 94 percent of the maximum amount permitted under paragraph (1), the Secretary shall promptly notify the Committees on Veterans' Affairs of the Senate and House of Representatives of the increase and the amount thereof."
2000—Subsec. (c)(1). Pub. L. 106–419 inserted ", pharmacists," after "anesthetists".
1992—Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 102–405, §302(c)(1), substituted "Under Secretary for Health" for "Chief Medical Director" in par. (1).
Pub. L. 102–405, §201, designated existing provisions as par. (1), inserted "by two times" after first reference to "exceed", and added par. (2).
1991—Subsec. (a)(2)(C). Pub. L. 102–83 substituted "902" for "218".
Ex. Ord. No. 12797, Apr. 3, 1992, 57 F.R. 11671, provided:
By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, including section 7455(d)(2)–(3) of title 38, United States Code, in order to establish procedures for review of proposed increases in the rates of basic pay of certain employees of the Department of Veterans Affairs and of other agencies, it is hereby ordered as follows:
(1) Provide pay in an amount competitive with, but not exceeding, the amount of the same type of pay paid to the same category of health-care personnel at non-Federal health-care facilities in the same labor market;
(2) Achieve adequate staffing at particular facilities; or
(3) Recruit personnel with specialized skills, especially those with skills which are especially difficult or demanding.