A-11211, SEPTEMBER 26, 1925, 5 COMP. GEN. 226

A-11211: Sep 26, 1925

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TO NEW YORK CITY WHEN GOVERNMENT TRANSPORT FACILITIES ARE AVAILABLE. MAY BE REIMBURSED ONLY IN AN AMOUNT EQUAL TO WHAT IT WOULD HAVE COST THE GOVERNMENT HAD HE TRAVELED BY TRANSPORT. HE IS NOT ENTITLED TO ANY REIMBURSEMENT FOR THE COST OF TRANSPORTING HIS DEPENDENTS BY SAID COMMERCIAL LINER. ARE IN PART AS FOLLOWS: IN COMPLIANCE WITH INSTRUCTIONS CONTAINED IN LETTER A.G. 210.31 (3 7-24). IS RELIEVED FROM FURTHER ASSIGNMENT AND DUTY IN THIS DEPARTMENT. HE WILL PROCEED AT THE PROPER TIME TO CRISTOBAL. HE WILL PROCEED TO THE NEW YORK GENERAL INTERMEDIATE DEPOT. IS NECESSARY IN THE MILITARY SERVICE AND IS CHARGEABLE TO PROCUREMENT AUTHORITY F.D. 29. YOU URGE THAT TRAVEL BY COMMERCIAL LINER WAS NECESSARY TO COMPLY WITH THE ORDERS QUOTED.

A-11211, SEPTEMBER 26, 1925, 5 COMP. GEN. 226

TRANSPORTATION - ARMY OFFICER AND DEPENDENTS TRAVELING BY COMMERCIAL LINER AN OFFICER OF THE ARMY, ORDERED TO MAKE A PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION FROM THE CANAL ZONE TO NEW YORK CITY, WHO FOR HIS OWN CONVENIENCE TRAVELS ON A COMMERCIAL LINER FROM CRISTOBAL, COLON, CANAL ZONE, TO NEW YORK CITY WHEN GOVERNMENT TRANSPORT FACILITIES ARE AVAILABLE, MAY BE REIMBURSED ONLY IN AN AMOUNT EQUAL TO WHAT IT WOULD HAVE COST THE GOVERNMENT HAD HE TRAVELED BY TRANSPORT; AND HE IS NOT ENTITLED TO ANY REIMBURSEMENT FOR THE COST OF TRANSPORTING HIS DEPENDENTS BY SAID COMMERCIAL LINER.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL MCCARL TO MAJ. JACOB FRANK, UNITED STATES ARMY, SEPTEMBER 26, 1925:

THERE HAS BEEN RECEIVED YOUR REQUEST FOR REVIEW OF SETTLEMENT NO. 064132, DATED JANUARY 24, 1925, WHICH DISALLOWED YOUR CLAIM FOR REIMBURSEMENT OF TRANSPORTATION COSTS OF YOURSELF AND MINOR SON FROM CRISTOBAL, COLON, CANAL ZONE, TO NEW YORK CITY, DURING THE MONTH OF JULY, 1924.

SPECIAL ORDERS NO. 158, HEADQUARTERS PANAMA CANAL DEPARTMENT, JULY 11, 1924, ARE IN PART AS FOLLOWS:

IN COMPLIANCE WITH INSTRUCTIONS CONTAINED IN LETTER A.G. 210.31 (3 7-24), WAR DEPARTMENT, APRIL 19, 1924, MAJ. JACOB FRANK, QUARTERMASTER CORPS, PANAMA QUARTERMASTER DEPOT, COROZAL, C.Z., IS RELIEVED FROM FURTHER ASSIGNMENT AND DUTY IN THIS DEPARTMENT, EFFECTIVE THE DAY HE DEPARTS IN COMPLIANCE WITH THIS ORDER. HE WILL PROCEED AT THE PROPER TIME TO CRISTOBAL, C.Z., AND SAIL ON THE PANAMA RAILROAD STEAMSHIP CRISTOBAL, LEAVING THAT PORT FOR NEW YORK, N.Y., ON OR ABOUT JULY 20, 1924.

UPON ARRIVAL IN THE UNITED STATES AND UPON EXPIRATION OF THE LEAVE OF ABSENCE GRANTED HIM IN PARAGRAPH 7 OF THIS ORDER, HE WILL PROCEED TO THE NEW YORK GENERAL INTERMEDIATE DEPOT, NEW YORK CITY, AND REPORT IN PERSON TO THE COMMANDING OFFICER FOR DUTY AS ASSISTANT TO THE QUARTERMASTER SUPPLY OFFICER, IN ACCORDANCE WITH PARAGRAPH 27, SPECIAL ORDER NO. 93, WAR DEPARTMENT, APRIL 19, 1924.

THE TRAVEL DIRECTED, EXCLUSIVE OF TRANSPORTATION BY COMMERCIAL VESSEL, IS NECESSARY IN THE MILITARY SERVICE AND IS CHARGEABLE TO PROCUREMENT AUTHORITY F.D. 29, P. 5040, A 2-5.

YOU CLAIM REIMBURSEMENT IN THE AMOUNT OF $67.75, BEING STEAMER FARE FOR YOURSELF ($45), FOR YOUR SON ($15), TIPS ($5), STEAMER CHAIR ($1), BAGGAGE TRANSFER IN NEW YORK CITY ($1.75).

YOU URGE THAT TRAVEL BY COMMERCIAL LINER WAS NECESSARY TO COMPLY WITH THE ORDERS QUOTED; THAT THE PROVISIONS OF THE ORDER WERE MANDATORY AND THAT YOUR FAILURE TO COMPLY WITH THEM WOULD UNDOUBTEDLY HAVE RESULTED IN DISCIPLINARY ACTION, AND THAT AS IT WAS A BONA FIDE AND LEGAL TRAVEL ORDER DIRECTING A CHANGE OF STATION, YOU ARE ENTITLED TO REIMBURSEMENT OF THE COST OF TRAVEL BY COMMERCIAL LINER FOR BOTH YOURSELF AND YOUR 5-YEAR-OLD SON, BERYL H. FRANK.

UPON REQUEST OF THIS OFFICE FOR INFORMATION AS TO THE REASON YOU WERE DIRECTED TO SAIL BY COMMERCIAL LINER IN ORDERS OF JULY 11, 1924, THE ADJUTANT GENERAL OF THE ARMY FORWARDED THE FOLLOWING REPORT OF THE COMMANDING GENERAL, HEADQUARTERS, PANAMA CANAL DEPARTMENT, BALBOA HEIGHTS, CANAL ZONE:

1. ARRANGEMENTS WERE MADE TO FURNISH TRANSPORTATION TO MAJOR FRANK AND HIS MINOR SON ON THE U.S.A.T. SOMME, WHICH LEFT BALBOA, C.Z., FOR NEW YORK ON AUGUST 4, 1924, BUT UPON HIS WRITTEN REQUEST, COPY ATTACHED, THE REDUCED RATES GRANTED TO ARMY OFFICERS AND THEIR FAMILIES TRAVELING AT THEIR OWN EXPENSE WERE OBTAINED FOR HIM FROM THE P.R.R.S.S. CO. FOR THE JULY 20, 1924, SAILING OF THE S.S. CRISTOBAL.

2. AS INDICATED IN S.O. 158, PAR. 8, HQ., P.C. DEPT., DATED JULY 11, 1924, COPY ATTACHED, THAT PART OF THE JOURNEY MADE BY COMMERCIAL VESSEL IS NOT CHARGEABLE TO GOVERNMENT FUNDS; THEREFORE MAJOR FRANK IS NOT ENTITLED TO REIMBURSEMENT FOR THE TRAVEL FROM CRISTOBAL, C.Z.,TO NEW YORK, N.Y.

IT IS APPARENT THAT ADEQUATE TRANSPORT FACILITIES WERE AVAILABLE TO RETURN YOU AND YOUR DEPENDENT TO THE UNITED STATES, AND THAT YOU TRAVELED BY COMMERCIAL LINER RATHER THAN BY GOVERNMENT TRANSPORT FOR YOUR OWN CONVENIENCE. WHILE THE ORDER DIRECTING TRAVEL MAY HAVE BEEN MANDATORY, THE PROVISION THEREIN DIRECTING SUCH TRAVEL BY COMMERCIAL LINER WAS NOT NECESSARY IN THE MILITARY SERVICE. SUCH DIRECTION, BEING MADE AT YOUR REQUEST AND FOR YOUR OWN CONVENIENCE, CAN NOT BE USED AS A BASIS FOR SECURING REIMBURSEMENT OF EXCESSIVE COSTS FROM THE UNITED STATES.

IT IS WELL SETTLED THAT WHERE A SEA TRAVEL IS DIRECTED AND AN OFFICER FOR HIS OWN CONVENIENCE IS PERMITTED TO PROCEED ON A COMMERCIAL LINER, HE IS ENTITLED ONLY TO REIMBURSEMENT IN THE AMOUNT THAT IT WOULD HAVE COST THE GOVERNMENT HAD HE TRAVELED BY TRANSPORT. SEE PARAGRAPH 1642,MANUAL FOR THE QUARTERMASTER CORPS, 1916, AND DECISION OF THIS OFFICE JUNE 5, 1924, 34 MS. COMP. GEN. 169. HAD YOU TRAVELED BY THE U.S.A.T. SOMME, YOU WOULD HAVE BEEN ENTITLED TO REIMBURSEMENT IN THE AMOUNT OF $1.50 PER DAY FOR MEALS ON THAT VESSEL. A REPORT FROM THE QUARTERMASTER GENERAL STATES THAT THE SOMME SAILED FROM CRISTOBAL AT 8.30 P.M. AUGUST 4, 1924, AND DOCKED AT BROOKLYN AT 9 A.M. AUGUST 11, 1924. THE TRAVEL TIME SO FAR AS MEALS ARE CONCERNED WAS SIX AND ONE-THIRD DAYS, WHICH AT $1.50 PER DAY WOULD MAKE THE SUM OF $9.50 DUE YOU.

YOU ARE NOT ENTITLED TO REIMBURSEMENT OF THE COST OF TRANSPORTING YOUR MINOR SON, FOR THE REASON THAT THE ACT OF MAY 18, 1920, 41 STAT. 604, AUTHORIZING TRANSPORTATION OF DEPENDENTS, PROVIDED THAT TRANSPORTATION OF DEPENDENTS TO OR FROM STATIONS BEYOND THE CONTINENTAL LIMITS OF THE UNITED STATES SHOULD NOT BE OTHER THAN BY GOVERNMENT TRANSPORT, IF SUCH TRANSPORTATION IS AVAILABLE. SECTION 12 OF THE ACT OF JUNE 10, 1922, 42 STAT. 631, PROVIDES FOR REIMBURSEMENT IN LIEU ONLY OF THE TRANSPORTATION IN KIND AUTHORIZED BY THE ACT OF MAY 18, 1920. AS THE ACT OF MAY 18, 1920, DOES NOT AUTHORIZE TRANSPORTATION OF DEPENDENTS BY COMMERCIAL LINER TO OR FROM STATIONS BEYOND THE CONTINENTAL LIMITS OF THE UNITED STATES WHEN GOVERNMENT TRANSPORTATION IS AVAILABLE, IT FOLLOWS NECESSARILY THAT THE ACT OF JUNE 10, 1922, DID NOT AUTHORIZE REIMBURSEMENT FOR SUCH COMMERCIAL TRANSPORTATION.