A-11178, SEPTEMBER 23, 1925, 5 COMP. GEN. 224

A-11178: Sep 23, 1925

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COAST GUARD PAY - SHORE DUTY WARRANT OFFICERS OF THE COAST GUARD WHO ARE QUARTERED AND LIVE ON SHORE. WHILE ATTACHED TO AND PERFORMING DUTY ON A FLOATING SECTION BASE OF THE COAST GUARD FOR A SQUADRON OF PATROL BOATS ARE ON SHORE DUTY AND. ARE ENTITLED ONLY TO SHORE-DUTY PAY. REQUESTING DECISION WHETHER YOU ARE AUTHORIZED UNDER THE LAW TO PAY THE VOUCHERS IN QUESTION. REFERENCE (A) IS A DECISION OF THE COMPTROLLER GENERAL COVERING THE MATTER OF SEA PAY FOR WARRANT OFFICERS ON THE FLOATING SECTION BASE PICKERING. 2. SECTION BASE NO. 5 IS A FLOATING BASE ANCHORED OFF CITY POINT. IT IS NOT PROVIDED WITH MOTIVE POWER. REGULAR SHIP ROUTINE IS CARRIED OUT. A REGULAR OFFICER OF THE DECK WATCH IS MAINTAINED.

A-11178, SEPTEMBER 23, 1925, 5 COMP. GEN. 224

COAST GUARD PAY - SHORE DUTY WARRANT OFFICERS OF THE COAST GUARD WHO ARE QUARTERED AND LIVE ON SHORE, WHILE ATTACHED TO AND PERFORMING DUTY ON A FLOATING SECTION BASE OF THE COAST GUARD FOR A SQUADRON OF PATROL BOATS ARE ON SHORE DUTY AND, UNDER SECTION 10 OF THE ACT OF JUNE 10, 1922, 42 STAT. 630, ARE ENTITLED ONLY TO SHORE-DUTY PAY.

ACTING COMPTROLLER GENERAL GINN TO W. H. WEBB, PAY AND ALLOTMENT OFFICER, UNITED STATES COAST GUARD, SEPTEMBER 23, 1925:

THERE HAS BEEN RECEIVED YOUR LETTER OF SEPTEMBER 10, 1925, SUBMITTING VOUCHERS IN FAVOR OF CARPENTER C. BACKSTROM, MACHINIST (T) G. W. TABBUTT, PAY CLERK (T) C. C. HUMPHREYS, AND GUNNER (T) R. J. HEGARTY FOR THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN SHORE RATES OF PAY AND SEA RATES OF PAY, MAY 19 TO JUNE 30, 1925, $29.40, NOVEMBER 5, 1924, TO JUNE 30, 1925, $141.60, NOVEMBER 13, 1924, TO JUNE 30, 1925, $136.80, AND JUNE 16 TO 30, 1925, $10.50, RESPECTIVELY, AND REQUESTING DECISION WHETHER YOU ARE AUTHORIZED UNDER THE LAW TO PAY THE VOUCHERS IN QUESTION.

UNDER DATE OF JULY 9, 1925, THE COMMANDER SECTION BASE 5, CITY POINT, SOUTH BOSTON, MASS., ADVISED THE COMMANDANT (VIA COMMANDER EASTERN DIVISION) AS FOLLOWS:

1. REFERENCE (A) IS A DECISION OF THE COMPTROLLER GENERAL COVERING THE MATTER OF SEA PAY FOR WARRANT OFFICERS ON THE FLOATING SECTION BASE PICKERING.

2. SECTION BASE NO. 5 IS A FLOATING BASE ANCHORED OFF CITY POINT, SOUTH BOSTON, MASS. IT CAN BE REACHED ONLY BY BOAT. IT IS NOT PROVIDED WITH MOTIVE POWER, BUT CAN BE TOWED FROM POINT TO POINT. REGULAR SHIP ROUTINE IS CARRIED OUT, A REGULAR OFFICER OF THE DECK WATCH IS MAINTAINED, ALSO QUARTERMASTER, AND ANCHOR WATCH. NO ENGINE ROOM WATCH IS MAINTAINED, BUT A MACHINIST OR MACHINIST'S MATE STANDS REGULAR WATCH TO CARE FOR THE MACHINERY OF THE PATROL AND PICKET BOATS ATTACHED TO BASE NO. 5. THE WARRANT OFFICERS MESS ON BOARD AND ARE QUARTERED THEREON ON THEIR DAY'S DUTY. NO REGULAR ROOMS ARE ASSIGNED THE WARRANT OFFICERS AS QUARTERS.

3. LIBERTY AND LEAVES ARE GRANTED IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE PROVISIONS OF THE REGULATIONS GOVERNING THE SAME PRIVILEGES ABOARD SHIP.

4. THE OFFICERS MAY BE AND HAVE BEEN, CALLED BACK FROM LIBERTY OR LEAVE TO LOOK OUT FOR THE SAFETY OF THE SHIP, TO LOOK OUT FOR THE OPERATION OF THE UNITS ATTACHED, OR FOR THE DISCIPLINE OR HANDLING OF THE ENLISTED PERSONNEL.

5. BASE NO. 5 IS A FLOATING UNIT OF THE COAST GUARD, OPERATING AS SUCH.

6. ON HOLIDAYS AND SUNDAYS THE OFFICERS AND MEN ARE DENIED THE PRIVILEGE GRANTED THE SERVICE PERSONNEL STATIONED ON SHORE OF NOT HAVING TO REPORT FOR DUTY.

7. THE FACT THAT BASE NO. 5 IS NOT PROVIDED WITH MOTIVE POWER SHOULD NOT BE CONSIDERED CONTROLLING, FOR THE BASE IS CAPABLE OF CHANGE FROM PORT TO PORT BECAUSE OF ITS CHARACTER AS A FLOATING UNIT. MANY VESSELS IN THE MERCHANT SERVICE COVER THOUSANDS OF MILES OF SEA TRAVEL UNDER TOW AND WITHOUT MOTIVE POWER OF THEIR OWN. INDEED, THE MANAGEMENT AND CARE OF BASE NO. 5 LAST WINTER CALLED FOR THE SAME EXERCISE OF SEAMANSHIP AS IS DEMANDED OF A CRUISING CUTTER. SEVERAL TIMES LAST WINTER, FIELDS OF ICE SWEPT DOWN ON THE BASE AND THE OFFICERS AND CREW WERE OBLIGED TO EXTRICATE THE VESSEL BY MEANS OF THE PICKET AND PATROL BOATS ATTACHED TO IT. IN EVERY SENSE THE BASE WAS THEN AND IS NOW A FLOATING BASE. IN SUMMER, HEAVY SQUALLS DEMONSTRATE THE FACT OF FLOATABILITY OF BASE NO. 5.

8. UNLIKE A SHORE ESTABLISHMENT, ALL SUPPLIES MUST BE BOATED TO BASE NO. 5, AND LIBERTY MEN MUST GO AND COME BY BOAT. A CRUISING CUTTER DOES NOT BECOME A SHORE STATION WHEN IT MAKES FAST TO A WHARF; AND A BASE DOES NOT LOSE ITS CHARACTER AS A FLOATING UNIT BECAUSE NOT EQUIPPED WITH AN ENGINE. BASE NO. 5 CAN BE TRANSFERRED TO ANOTHER POINT BY THE CREW ATTACHED TO IT AND WITHOUT BEING TOWED. IT CAN BE KEDGED FROM PLACE TO PLACE OR A SAIL RIGGED TO HELP MOVE IT.

SECTION 10 OF THE ACT OF JUNE 10, 1922, 42 STAT. 630, PROVIDES, IN PART, AS FOLLOWS:

THAT ON AND AFTER JULY 1, 1922, THE MONTHLY BASE PAY OF WARRANT OFFICERS OF THE NAVY AND COAST GUARD SHALL BE AS FOLLOWS: DURING THE FIRST SIX YEARS OF SERVICE--- AT SEA, $153; ON SHORE, $135; DURING THE SECOND SIX YEARS OF SERVICE--- AT SEA, $168; ON SHORE, $147; AFTER TWELVE YEARS' SERVICE--- AT SEA, $189; ON SHORE, $168 * * *.

REFERENCE IS MADE TO THE DECISION OF JUNE 18, 1925, 46 MS. COMP. GEN. 738, WHEREIN IT WAS HELD THAT WARRANT OFFICERS ATTACHED TO THE COAST GUARD CUTTER PICKERING, USED AS A SECTION BASE, WHO WERE MESSED AND QUARTERED THEREON WERE ENTITLED TO SEA PAY UNDER THE ACT OF JUNE 10, 1922.

IN THE PRESENT CASE IT IS STATED THAT THE WARRANT OFFICERS IN QUESTION WERE ATTACHED TO SECTION BASE 5, A FLOATING UNIT OF THE COAST GUARD, AND THAT THEY "MESS ON BOARD AND ARE QUARTERED THEREON ON THEIR DAY'S DUTY. NO REGULAR ROOMS ARE ASSIGNED THE WARRANT OFFICERS AS QUARTERS.' IT IS UNDERSTOOD THAT THE OFFICERS WHO WERE ON DUTY DURING THE DAY OCCUPIED PERMANENT QUARTERS ON SHORE AT NIGHT AND THOSE WHO WERE ON DUTY DURING THE NIGHT OCCUPIED PERMANENT QUARTERS ON SHORE DURING THE DAY. IN OTHER WORDS THEY HAVE NOT BEEN ASSIGNED AND DID NOT OCCUPY QUARTERS ON SECTION BASE 5, TO WHICH THEY WERE ASSIGNED TO DUTY.

IT HAS LONG BEEN HELD BY THE COURTS AND THE ACCOUNTING OFFICERS THAT AN OFFICER ATTACHED TO A RECEIVING SHIP, OR A SHIP OF LIKE CHARACTER, SUCH AS A SHIP WHICH IS UNFIT FOR SEA, HOUSED IN, OR TIED TO THE SHORE, ETC., WHO IS QUARTERED AND LIVES ON SHORE IS NOT ENTITLED TO THE HIGHER RATE OF PAY PROVIDED FOR SEA DUTY. MAHAN V. UNITED STATES, 40 CT.CLS. 36; 20 COMP. DEC. 651; 19 ID. 136; 17 ID. 516; ID 753.

AS THE FACTS PRESENTED SHOW THAT THE OFFICERS IN QUESTION WERE QUARTERED ON SHORE DURING THE SAID PERIODS, IT MUST BE CONCLUDED THAT SUCH DUTY WAS DUTY ON SHORE, AND, THEREFORE THEY ARE ONLY ENTITLED TO SHORE PAY UNDER THE ACT OF JUNE 10, 1922.