A-12681, MARCH 5, 1926, 5 COMP. GEN. 694

A-12681: Mar 5, 1926

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NAVY - SHIP'S SERVICE DEPARTMENT LAUNDRY THERE IS NO STATUTORY AUTHORITY FOR THE PRACTICE OF THE SHIP'S SERVICE DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY USING GOVERNMENT-OWNED MACHINERY FOR THE PERFORMANCE OF LAUNDRY WORK FOR INDIVIDUALS OR FOR OTHER BRANCHES OF THE SERVICES AND MAKING A CHARGE THEREFOR. PAYMENT FOR LAUNDRY WORK PERFORMED BY THE SHIP'S SERVICE DEPARTMENT LAUNDRY FOR THE MARINE CORPS IS ACCORDINGLY NOT AUTHORIZED. SUBMITTING FOR DECISION WHETHER PAYMENT THEREON IS AUTHORIZED. YOU REPORTED ON THE STATUS OF THE PAYEE OF VOUCHERS AS FOLLOWS: THE LAUNDRY SERVICE IN QUESTION IS PERFORMED BY CIVILIAN PERSONNEL. THE LAUNDRY IS SELF-SUSTAINING UNDER THE SHIP'S SERVICE DEPARTMENT. ARE PAID BY THE SHIP'S SERVICE DEPARTMENT.

A-12681, MARCH 5, 1926, 5 COMP. GEN. 694

NAVY - SHIP'S SERVICE DEPARTMENT LAUNDRY THERE IS NO STATUTORY AUTHORITY FOR THE PRACTICE OF THE SHIP'S SERVICE DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY USING GOVERNMENT-OWNED MACHINERY FOR THE PERFORMANCE OF LAUNDRY WORK FOR INDIVIDUALS OR FOR OTHER BRANCHES OF THE SERVICES AND MAKING A CHARGE THEREFOR, THE PROCEEDS BEING USED FOR THE PAYMENT OF MAINTENANCE CHARGES AND COMPENSATION OF CIVILIAN PERSONNEL AND ANY SURPLUS FOR THE BENEFIT OF ENLISTED MEN. PAYMENT FOR LAUNDRY WORK PERFORMED BY THE SHIP'S SERVICE DEPARTMENT LAUNDRY FOR THE MARINE CORPS IS ACCORDINGLY NOT AUTHORIZED.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL MCCARL TO THE QUARTERMASTER, UNITED STATED MARINE CORPS, MARCH 5, 1926:

THERE HAS BEEN RECEIVED YOUR LETTER OF SEPTEMBER 10, 1925, AND YOUR SECOND INDORSEMENT OF DECEMBER 14, 1925, SUBMITTING FOR DECISION WHETHER PAYMENT THEREON IS AUTHORIZED, TWO VOUCHERS IN FAVOR OF THE SHIP'S SERVICE DEPARTMENT LAUNDRY, SUBMARINE BASE, NEW LONDON, CONN., COVERING LAUNDRY SERVICE FOR THE MARINE DETACHMENT AT THAT PLACE FOR THE MONTHS OF JULY AND AUGUST, 1925. UNDER DATE OF FEBRUARY 16, 1926, YOU REPORTED ON THE STATUS OF THE PAYEE OF VOUCHERS AS FOLLOWS:

THE LAUNDRY SERVICE IN QUESTION IS PERFORMED BY CIVILIAN PERSONNEL, USING GOVERNMENT-OWNED EQUIPMENT; THE LAUNDRY IS SELF-SUSTAINING UNDER THE SHIP'S SERVICE DEPARTMENT, SUBMARINE BASE. REPAIRS TO MACHINERY, ETC., ARE PAID BY THE SHIP'S SERVICE DEPARTMENT. PROFITS ARE TURNED OVER TO THE SHIP'S SERVICE DEPARTMENT FOR THE BENEFIT OF ENLISTED MEN. THAT LAUNDRY WAS ESTABLISHED IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE PRACTICE IN EFFECT AT OTHER NAVAL ESTABLISHMENTS FOR THE PURPOSE OF PERFORMING LAUNDRY SERVICE FOR OFFICERS AND ENLISTED MEN. PRICES CHARGED ARE APPROXIMATELY 60 PERCENT OF THOSE CHARGED BY OUTSIDE FIRMS.

IT IS PROPOSED TO PAY THESE VOUCHERS FROM THE APPROPRIATION "GENERAL EXPENSES, MARINE CORPS, 1925," SUBHEAD "MISCELLANEOUS SUPPLIES AND EXPENSES," ACT OF MAY 28, 1924, 43 STAT. 203, WHICH PROVIDES AS FOLLOWS:

FOR MISCELLANEOUS SUPPLIES, MATERIAL, EQUIPMENT, PERSONAL AND OTHER SERVICES, AND FOR OTHER INCIDENTAL EXPENSES FOR THE MARINE CORPS NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR; * * * CONSTRUCTION, OPERATION, AND MAINTENANCE OF LAUNDRIES: AND FOR ALL EMERGENCIES AND EXTRAORDINARY EXPENSES, $1,876,000:

IN THE ESTIMATES SUBMITTED FOR THE ABOVE APPROPRIATION THERE WAS INCLUDED UNDER THE CLASSIFICATION OF "SPECIAL AND MISCELLANEOUS CURRENT EXPENSES," AN ITEM OF $20,000 FOR LAUNDRY AND TOWEL SERVICE, IN ADDITION TO THE ITEM OF $40,000 FOR CONSTRUCTION, OPERATION, AND MAINTENANCE OF LAUNDRIES. THE APPROPRIATION IN QUESTION APPEARS AVAILABLE, THEREFORE, FOR NECESSARY LAUNDRY SERVICE AT SUCH PLACES AS THE CONSTRUCTION, OPERATION, AND MAINTENANCE OF LAUNDRIES BY THE MARINE CORPS IS NOT WARRANTED.

IT APPEARS FROM YOUR REPORT, HOWEVER, THAT THE LAUNDRY MACHINERY BELONGS TO THE GOVERNMENT; THAT THE WORK IS PERFORMED BY CIVILIANS PAID FROM THE RECEIPTS; AND THE PROFIT THEREFROM IS TURNED OVER TO THE "SHIP'S SERVICE DEPARTMENT" FOR THE BENEFIT OF ENLISTED MEN. UNDER WHAT AUTHORITY THE LAUNDRY MACHINERY WAS PROCURED AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE DOES NOT APPEAR, AND I FIND NO APPROPRIATION FOR THE OPERATION AND MAINTENANCE THEREOF. NEITHER DOES ANY AUTHORITY APPEAR FOR THE USE OF GOVERNMENT OWNED MACHINERY FOR THE PERFORMANCE OF WORK FOR INDIVIDUALS OR EVEN OTHER BRANCHES OF THE SERVICE AT A PROFIT. THE USE OF THE PROCEEDS OF THIS LAUNDRY (WHICH APPEARS TO BE AN ESTABLISHMENT CREATED BY THE USE OF GOVERNMENT FUNDS) FOR THE BENEFIT OF ENLISTED MEN WOULD ALSO APPEAR TO BE IN CONTRAVENTION OF SECTION 3617, REVISED STATUTES, REQUIRING THE GROSS AMOUNT OF ALL MONEYS RECEIVED ON BEHALF OF THE UNITED STATES TO BE COVERED INTO THE TREASURY AS MISCELLANEOUS RECEIPTS. A.D. 6302, FEBRUARY 3, 1922.

IN THE ABSENCE OF A MORE DEFINITE SHOWING AS TO THE LEGAL STATUS OF THIS "SHIP'S SERVICE DEPARTMENT LAUNDRY" AND THE AUTHORITY OF LAW FOR ITS EXISTENCE, PAYMENT TO IT ON THE VOUCHERS PRESENTED IS NOT AUTHORIZED.