3.7 Decorations.§ 3.7 Decorations.
(a) Decorations tendered in recognition of active field service in time of combat operations or awarded for other outstanding or unusually meritorious performance may be accepted, retained, and worn by an employee, subject to the approval of the employing agency. Without such approval, the decoration is deemed to have been accepted on behalf of the United States and, like tangible gifts of more than minimal value, must be deposited by the employee with the designated depository office for the employing agency within sixty days after acceptance, for retention for official use or for disposal in accordance with § 3.9.
(b) The decision as to whether a decoration has been awarded for outstanding or unusually meritorious performance will be made:
(1) For the Department of State, by the supervising Assistant Secretary of State or comparable official, except that, in the case of a decoration awarded to an Assistant Secretary or other officer of comparable or higher rank, the decision shall be made by the Office of Protocol;
(2) For IDCA, by the Assistant Director for Administration;
(3) For AID, by the Director of Personnel Management; and
(4) For USICA, by the Supervising Associate Director, the General Counsel, or the Director of the Office of Congressional and Public Liaison (for domestic employees), and by the Director of Area Offices (for overseas employees).
(c) To justify an affirmative decision, a statement from the foreign government, preferably in the form of a citation which shows the specific basis for the tender of the award, should be supplied. An employee who has received or been tendered a decoration should forward to the designated depository office of the employing agency a request for review of the case. This request should contain a statement of circumstances of the award and such documentation from the foreign government as has accompanied it. The depository office will obtain the decision of the cognizant office as to whether the award meets the statutory criteria and thus whether the decoration may be retained and worn. Pending receipt of that decision, the decoration should remain in the custody of the recipient.