A-15147, AUGUST 14, 1926, 6 COMP. GEN. 110

A-15147: Aug 14, 1926

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IS NOT AUTHORIZED. 1926: I HAVE YOUR LETTER OF JULY 20. AS FOLLOWS: THE COMMISSIONERS OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA HAVE THE HONOR TO FORWARD HEREWITH E. IS THE REAPPROPRIATION OF THE UNEXPENDED BALANCE OF $154. IS THE REAPPROPRIATION OF THE UNEXPENDED BALANCE OF $154. WHETHER OR NOT SUCH SITE IS SPECIFICALLY MENTIONED IN THE LEGISLATION QUOTED ABOVE? THE QUESTION FOR DECISION IS WHETHER THE LIMITATION OR RESTRICTION CONTAINED IN THE FIRST PARAGRAPH OPERATES ONLY AGAINST THE LUMP-SUM APPROPRIATION OF $703. IT WAS FURTHER PROVIDED THAT IF ANY OF THE SITES ENUMERATED CAN NOT BE PURCHASED UNDER THE LIMITATION AS TO PRICE THEN ANY OF THE MONEYS REMAINING UNEXPENDED MAY BE EXPENDED. IT APPEARS CLEAR THAT IT WAS THE INTENTION OF THE CONGRESS IN THE ENACTMENT RESTRICTING THE USE OF THE APPROPRIATIONS FOR THE PURCHASE OF SCHOOL AND PLAYGROUND SITES THAT SUCH RESTRICTION AS TO PRICE SHALL APPLY TO ALL ACQUISITIONS OF SAID SITES UNDER APPROPRIATIONS MADE IN SAID ACT AND NOT MERELY TO THE LUMP-SUM APPROPRIATION OF $703.

A-15147, AUGUST 14, 1926, 6 COMP. GEN. 110

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA - PURCHASE OF SCHOOL AND PLAYGROUND SITES THE PROVISO CONTAINED IN THE ACT OF MAY 10, 1926, 44 STAT. 430, MAKING APPROPRIATION FOR THE PURCHASE OF SCHOOL AND PLAYGROUND SITES IN THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, RESTRICTING THE PRICE TO BE PAID THEREFOR FROM "APPROPRIATIONS HEREIN MADE" TO THE FULL VALUE ASSESSMENT PLUS 25 PERCENTUM, APPLIES TO THE ENTIRE ACT AND THE PURCHASE OF LAND, WITHOUT REGARD TO SUCH RESTRICTION AS TO PRICE, FROM A REAPPROPRIATION BY THE SAME ACT OF THE UNEXPENDED BALANCE OF A PRIOR APPROPRIATION, IS NOT AUTHORIZED.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL MCCARL TO THE PRESIDENT OF THE BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, AUGUST 14, 1926:

I HAVE YOUR LETTER OF JULY 20, 1926, AS FOLLOWS:

THE COMMISSIONERS OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA HAVE THE HONOR TO FORWARD HEREWITH E. D. FILE 204614/2, AND TO REQUEST YOUR DECISION ON THE FOLLOWING QUESTIONS RELATING TO THE MATTER OF THE AVAILABILITY OF CERTAIN APPROPRIATIONS PROVIDED IN THE DISTRICT APPROPRIATION ACT FOR THE FISCAL YEAR 1927 FOR THE PURCHASE OF SITES FOR SCHOOL BUILDINGS:

1. IS THE REAPPROPRIATION OF THE UNEXPENDED BALANCE OF $154,000 SUBJECT TO THE LIMITATION THAT PURCHASES THEREFROM MAY NOT BE MADE WHEN THE COST OF THE SITE EXCEEDS THE FULL VALUE ASSESSMENT OF THE PROPERTY PLUS 25 PERCENTUM OF SUCH ASSESSED VALUE?

2. IS THE REAPPROPRIATION OF THE UNEXPENDED BALANCE OF $154,000 AVAILABLE FOR THE PURCHASE OF ANY SCHOOL BUILDING OR PLAYGROUND SITE AUTHORIZED TO BE ACQUIRED IN THE FIVE-YEAR SCHOOL BUILDING PROGRAM ACT, WHETHER OR NOT SUCH SITE IS SPECIFICALLY MENTIONED IN THE LEGISLATION QUOTED ABOVE?

THE ACT OF MAY 10, 1926, 44 STAT. 430, MAKING APPROPRIATION FOR THE GOVERNMENT OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA AND OTHER ACTIVITIES FOR THE FISCAL YEAR 1927, UNDER THE HEADING "PUBLIC SCHOOLS" PROVIDES:

SALARIES: FOR PERSONAL SERVICES OF ADMINISTRATIVE AND SUPERVISORY OFFICERS IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE ACT FIXING AND REGULATING THE SALARIES OF TEACHERS, SCHOOL OFFICERS, AND OTHER EMPLOYEES OF THE BOARD OF EDUCATION OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, APPROVED JUNE 4, 1924, $630,300. FOR PERSONAL SERVICES OF CLERKS AND OTHER EMPLOYEES IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CLASSIFICATION ACT OF 1923, $109,500.

FOR PERSONAL SERVICES IN THE DEPARTMENT OF SCHOOL ATTENDANCE AND WORK PERMITS IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE ACT APPROVED JUNE 4, 1924, AND THE ACT APPROVED FEBRUARY 5, 1925, $29,900.

THE QUESTION FOR DECISION IS WHETHER THE LIMITATION OR RESTRICTION CONTAINED IN THE FIRST PARAGRAPH OPERATES ONLY AGAINST THE LUMP-SUM APPROPRIATION OF $703,500 MADE THEREIN, OR WHETHER IT APPLIES ALSO AGAINST THE MONEYS REAPPROPRIATED IN THE SECOND PARAGRAPH QUOTED ABOVE.

THE ACT OF FEBRUARY 26, 1925, 43 STAT. 986, AUTHORIZED A FIVE-YEAR SCHOOL -BUILDING PROGRAM FOR THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA AND THE ACT OF MAY 10, 1926, SUPRA, APPROPRIATED A LUMP SUM FOR THE PURCHASE OF SITES SPECIFICALLY ENUMERATED THEREIN, SUBJECT, HOWEVER, TO THE RESTRICTION THAT "NO PART OF THE APPROPRIATIONS HEREIN MADE" SHALL BE EXPENDED FOR THE PURCHASE OF ANY SITE THE COST OF WHICH SHALL EXCEED THE FULL VALUE ASSESSMENT OF SUCH PROPERTY LAST MADE BEFORE PURCHASE THEREOF PLUS 25 PERCENT OF SUCH ASSESSED VALUE. IT WAS FURTHER PROVIDED THAT IF ANY OF THE SITES ENUMERATED CAN NOT BE PURCHASED UNDER THE LIMITATION AS TO PRICE THEN ANY OF THE MONEYS REMAINING UNEXPENDED MAY BE EXPENDED, SUBJECT TO THE LIMITATION AS TO PRICE, IN THE PURCHASE OF ANY OR ALL LAND AUTHORIZED TO BE ACQUIRED IN THE FIVE-YEAR SCHOOL-BUILDING PROGRAM AUTHORIZED BY THE ACT OF FEBRUARY 26, 1925.

IN ADDITION TO THE LUMP-SUM APPROPRIATION REFERRED TO THE ACT REAPPROPRIATES THE UNEXPENDED BALANCE OF AN APPROPRIATION MADE FOR A SPECIFIC SCHOOL PURPOSE IN AN ACT MAKING APPROPRIATION FOR A PRIOR FISCAL YEAR AND AUTHORIZES ITS EXPENDITURE FOR THE PURCHASE OF SITES AUTHORIZED TO BE ACQUIRED BY THE ACT OF FEBRUARY 26, 1925.

IT APPEARS CLEAR THAT IT WAS THE INTENTION OF THE CONGRESS IN THE ENACTMENT RESTRICTING THE USE OF THE APPROPRIATIONS FOR THE PURCHASE OF SCHOOL AND PLAYGROUND SITES THAT SUCH RESTRICTION AS TO PRICE SHALL APPLY TO ALL ACQUISITIONS OF SAID SITES UNDER APPROPRIATIONS MADE IN SAID ACT AND NOT MERELY TO THE LUMP-SUM APPROPRIATION OF $703,500. IT IS OBVIOUS THAT THE PLACING OF THE RESTRICTION UPON THE USE OF THE APPROPRIATIONS MADE WAS BUT A MEANS OF PROHIBITING THE PURCHASE OF SITES AT A COST GREATER THAN THE FULL VALUE ASSESSED PLUS 25 PERCENT, AND REPEATING THE RESTRICTION IN THAT PART OF THE ACT REAPPROPRIATING THE UNEXPENDED BALANCE OF THE PRIOR APPROPRIATION WAS UNNECESSARY TO GIVE EFFECT TO THAT INTENT BUT ON THE CONTRARY EXPRESS EXCEPTION THEREFROM WOULD HAVE BEEN NECESSARY IF THE RESTRICTION WAS NOT INTENDED TO BE APPLICABLE.

I AM ACCORDINGLY CONSTRAINED TO DETERMINE THAT THE REAPPROPRIATION OF THE UNEXPENDED BALANCE OF $154,000 IS SUBJECT TO THE LIMITATION THAT PURCHASES THEREFROM MAY NOT BE MADE WHEN THE COST OF THE SITE EXCEEDS THE FULL VALUE ASSESSMENT OF THE PROPERTY PLUS 25 PERCENT OF SUCH ASSESSED VALUE EITHER FOR THE PURCHASE OF SITES SPECIFICALLY ENUMERATED IN THE ACT OF MAY 10, 1926, OR FOR THE PURCHASE OF OTHER SITES AUTHORIZED TO BE ACQUIRED BY THE FIVE-YEAR SCHOOL-BUILDING PROGRAM AUTHORIZED IN THE ACT OF FEBRUARY 26, 1925.