Thousands of federal workers who are paid special rates could get raises next year, thanks to language added to the continuing resolution yesterday by Rep. Steny H. Hoyer (D-Md.).

The Senate and House are expected to approve a long-term continuing resolution this week. It would allow a dozen federal departments -- whose budgets for this fiscal year haven't been approved -- to continue operating. A short-term resolution passed earlier by Congress expires today, meaning that those agencies, technically, would be without money tomorrow.

Under the Hoyer plan, the Office of Personnel Management would be authorized to raise special pay rates for federal agencies losing workers to other government departments that pay those hard-to-hire employes more. OPM can authorize special rate raises only when agencies are having recruiting and retention problems because of higher pay for similar jobs in the private sector. OPM cannot address internal government pay differentials.

Most of the employes covered by the special rate program are engineers and scientists who earn from 5 to 20 percent more than nonspecial rate employes in the same civil service grades. But special rates also have been authorized for many clerical workers in the Washington area, and for hard-to-fill jobs in other cities.

Hoyer said that the Bureau of Engraving and Printing has had trouble keeping police officers because they can get up to $3,000 a year more by switching to the National Zoo police force. The same salary imbalance exists, he said, for certain nurses at the National Institutes of Health who are paid less than their counterparts in the Veterans Administration.

In other action, the House agreed to expand a leave- sharing test originally pushed by Rep. Frank R. Wolf (R-Va.). Leave-sharing is now limited to a handful of pilot projects. Under leave-sharing, employes can donate unused leave time to banks. Colleagues in need of the extra paid time off because of illness or major family emergencies can use that leave. The Wolf plan would allow almost any federal agency to set up its own program. Job Mart

The National Science Foundation wants a Grade 14 (supervisory) grant-contract specialist. Call 357-7840.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission in Bethesda needs a GS 5 secretary (typing) to work 32 hours a week. Call Ann Jordan at 492-6500.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has an opening for a GS 11/12 personnel management specialist. Call 443-8425.

The U.S. Customs Service is looking for a GS 5 through 9 correspondence analyst ($14,822 to $29,199) for a one-year assignment. Call Brenda Garner at 634-2083.

The Drug Enforcement Administration wants accountants, GS 7 and 9. Call April Davis at 633-1034.

The Justice Department needs a personnel clerk/assistant, GS 4 through 6; a secretary (typing) GS 5/6 and a personnel management specialist, GS 9 through 12. Call 724-7730.

The Internal Revenue Service needs printing specialists, GS 5 through 12. Call John Wood at 566-3835.

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. wants accountants, GS 7 through 12. Call 898-3980.