A-14569, JUNE 24, 1926, 5 COMP. GEN. 1021

A-14569: Jun 24, 1926

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WHEN USE OF THE GARAGE WAS TERMINATED AFTER FIVE DAYS. NOT AT THE PROPORTIONATE PART OF THE MONTHLY ADVANCE RATE FOR WHICH THE INSPECTOR WAS NOT AUTHORIZED TO CONTRACT ON BEHALF OF THE GOVERNMENT. WHEREIN CREDIT WAS DISALLOWED IN HIS ACCOUNTS FOR A PAYMENT IN THE SUM OF $3.33 MADE TO IRA LANTZ. INSPECTOR LANTZ STATES: * * * I WAS DIRECTED BY THE DIVISION INSPECTOR TO STORE THIS CAR FOR A MONTH AT AS CHEAP A RATE AS IT WAS POSSIBLE TO SECURE. THAT THE RATE FOR STORAGE WHEN CARS WERE STORED FROM DAY TO DAY WAS 50 CENTS PER DAY. PROVIDED THE GARAGE RENT WERE PAID IN ADVANCE. THIS WAS DONE AND VOUCHER TAKEN THEREFOR. SUBSEQUENTLY THE DIVISION INSPECTOR CHANGED HIS PLANS AND THE CAR WAS ASSIGNED TO INSPECTOR PALMER.

A-14569, JUNE 24, 1926, 5 COMP. GEN. 1021

PAYMENTS, ADVANCE - GARAGE RENT WHERE AN INSPECTOR OF THE GENERAL LAND OFFICE ENTERED INTO AN AGREEMENT FOR GARAGE SERVICE AND MADE AN ADVANCE PAYMENT THEREFOR AT THE MONTHLY RENTAL RATE, THE DAILY RATE BEING HIGHER, REIMBURSEMENT TO THE INSPECTOR BY THE GOVERNMENT, WHEN USE OF THE GARAGE WAS TERMINATED AFTER FIVE DAYS, MAY BE MADE AT THE DAILY RATE, AND NOT AT THE PROPORTIONATE PART OF THE MONTHLY ADVANCE RATE FOR WHICH THE INSPECTOR WAS NOT AUTHORIZED TO CONTRACT ON BEHALF OF THE GOVERNMENT.

DECISION BY COMPTROLLER GENERAL MCCARL, JUNE 24, 1926:

E. D. M. FOWLE, SPECIAL DISBURSING AGENT, GENERAL LAND OFFICE, REQUESTED, MAY 19, 1926, REVIEW OF SETTLEMENT C-15817-I, DATED JUNE 19, 1925, WHEREIN CREDIT WAS DISALLOWED IN HIS ACCOUNTS FOR A PAYMENT IN THE SUM OF $3.33 MADE TO IRA LANTZ, INSPECTOR, DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR, AS REIMBURSEMENT OF A PAYMENT MADE BY INSPECTOR LANTZ TO MRS. J. P. HUPMAN FOR GARAGE RENTAL FROM NOVEMBER 6 TO 30, 1923, AFTER THE REMOVAL OF THE CAR FROM THE GARAGE.

WITH REFERENCE TO THE ITEM, INSPECTOR LANTZ STATES:

* * * I WAS DIRECTED BY THE DIVISION INSPECTOR TO STORE THIS CAR FOR A MONTH AT AS CHEAP A RATE AS IT WAS POSSIBLE TO SECURE; THAT THE RATE FOR STORAGE WHEN CARS WERE STORED FROM DAY TO DAY WAS 50 CENTS PER DAY; AND THAT MRS. HUPMAN AGREED TO STORE THIS CAR DURING THE MONTH OF NOVEMBER FOR $4.00, PROVIDED THE GARAGE RENT WERE PAID IN ADVANCE. THIS WAS DONE AND VOUCHER TAKEN THEREFOR. SUBSEQUENTLY THE DIVISION INSPECTOR CHANGED HIS PLANS AND THE CAR WAS ASSIGNED TO INSPECTOR PALMER, WHO INCURRED A CHARGE FOR STORAGE FOR THE REMAINDER OF THE MONTH--- THAT IS, FROM NOVEMBER 6 TO 30.

IT HAS BEEN SHOWN THAT THE STANDARD DAILY RATES FOR STORAGE IN BERKELEY AT THAT TIME WERE 50 CENTS PER DAY, AND THIS IS THE CHEAPEST RATE THAT COULD HAVE BEEN SECURED UNDER THE CIRCUMSTANCES, AS THE CAR WAS STORED FOR LESS THAN A WEEK. BY MEETING MRS. HUPMAN'S REQUIREMENTS AND PAYING THE MONTHLY RATE IN ADVANCE, I SECURED A RATE AMOUNTING TO 13 1/3 CENTS A DAY, YET IT HAS BEEN HELD BY YOU THAT MY ACTION IN SECURING THIS RATE WAS ILLEGAL.

IF THE TRANSACTION HAD BEEN MADE AS SUGGESTED IN YOUR SETTLEMENT, IT WOULD HAVE COST THE UNITED STATES $2.50 FOR STORING THE CAR FROM NOVEMBER 1 TO 5, AND I DO NOT BELIEVE THAT IT IS THE INTENTION OF YOUR OFFICE TO TAKE ADVANTAGE OF AN ALLEGED ILLEGAL TRANSACTION TO DEPRIVE ME OF THE AMOUNT PAID FOR STORAGE OF THIS CAR DURING THE PERIOD MENTIONED. THEREFORE I BELIEVE THAT I SHOULD BE ALLOWED REIMBURSEMENT AT THE RATE OF 50 CENTS PER DAY FROM NOVEMBER 1 TO 5, OR $2.50, INSTEAD OF AT THE RATE OF 13 1/3 CENTS PER DAY, OR 67 CENTS. ACCORDINGLY, I REQUEST A RECONSIDERATION OF THE ITEM AND A REVISION OF THE SETTLEMENT TO CORRESPOND WITH THE EQUITABLE PRINCIPLE SUGGESTED.

IT APPEARS FROM THE FOREGOING THAT MRS. HUPMAN HAD TWO RATES FOR GARAGE SERVICE, ONE BY THE DAY, THE OTHER BY THE MONTH. THE MONTHLY RATE CALLED FOR PAYMENT IN ADVANCE. THE INSPECTOR ACCEPTED THE MONTHLY RATE, AND ACCORDINGLY MADE AN ADVANCE RENTAL PAYMENT FOR THE ENTIRE MONTH OF NOVEMBER, 1923, AMOUNTING TO $4. SINCE THE INSPECTOR WAS NOT AUTHORIZED TO CONTRACT ON BEHALF OF THE UNITED STATES, THE GOVERNMENT WAS NOT OBLIGATED FOR THE ENTIRE MONTH'S RENT. WHETHER HE OBTAINED A REBATE FROM THE OWNER OF THE GARAGE WHEN THE CAR WAS REMOVED AFTER ONLY FIVE DAYS IS NOT SHOWN. BUT BE THAT AS IT MAY, THE CAR WAS STORED AT HIS EXPENSE FOR ONLY FIVE DAYS, AND THE AMOUNT WHICH IT WAS NECESSARY FOR HIM TO PAY FOR SUCH STORAGE WAS ONLY $2.50, BEING AT THE REGULAR DAILY RATE FOR THE PERIOD OF STORAGE. ACCORDINGLY, THE REIMBURSEMENT TO THE EXTENT OF $2.50 FOR SUCH STORAGE WAS AUTHORIZED.

UPON REVIEW THERE IS CERTIFIED A DIFFERENCE IN FAVOR OF THE DISBURSING OFFICER IN THE SUM OF $1.83.