A-16362, DECEMBER 6, 1926, 6 COMP. GEN. 380

A-16362: Dec 6, 1926

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TRAVELING EXPENSES - LEAVE OF ABSENCE AN EMPLOYEE OF THE DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE WHOSE REGULAR DUTY STATION WAS WASHINGTON. WHO WAS GRANTED A LEAVE OF ABSENCE AND ORDERED AT THE TERMINATION THEREOF TO PROCEED TO A TEMPORARY STATION FOR DUTY. WAS NOT REQUIRED TO RETURN TO HIS PERMANENT STATION IN ORDER TO ACQUIRE A TRAVEL STATUS. CLAIMANT WAS "AUTHORIZED TO INCUR EXPENSES FOR THE PURPOSES ENUMERATED AND DURING THE PERIOD INDICATED IN THE PERFORMANCE OF OFFICIAL DUTY. AS FOLLOWS: YOU ARE INFORMED. POSSON PARTICIPATED WAS A CONTEST OF STUDENTS OF VARIOUS EDUCATIONAL INSTITUTIONS IN THE JUDGING OF DAIRY CATTLE. SIMILAR CONTESTS ARE HELD ANNUALLY IN CONJUNCTION WITH THE NATIONAL DAIRY EXPOSITIONS AND THE BUREAU OF DAIRY INDUSTRY COOPERATES WITH THE OFFICIALS OF THE EXPOSITION IN SUPERVISING THE CONTESTS.

A-16362, DECEMBER 6, 1926, 6 COMP. GEN. 380

TRAVELING EXPENSES - LEAVE OF ABSENCE AN EMPLOYEE OF THE DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE WHOSE REGULAR DUTY STATION WAS WASHINGTON, D.C., AND WHO WAS GRANTED A LEAVE OF ABSENCE AND ORDERED AT THE TERMINATION THEREOF TO PROCEED TO A TEMPORARY STATION FOR DUTY, WAS NOT REQUIRED TO RETURN TO HIS PERMANENT STATION IN ORDER TO ACQUIRE A TRAVEL STATUS, BUT UPON REPORTING FOR DUTY AT THE TEMPORARY DUTY STATION, AS ORDERED BY COMPETENT AUTHORITY, MAY BE CONSIDERED IN A TRAVEL STATUS AND REIMBURSED THE AMOUNT OF AUTHORIZED EXPENSES INCURRED SUBSEQUENT TO HIS ARRIVAL.

DECISION BY COMPTROLLER GENERAL MCCARL, DECEMBER 6, 1926:

R. J. POSSON APPLIED SEPTEMBER 23, 1926, FOR REVIEW OF HIS CLAIM NO. 0118261 FOR $30.43, AS REIMBURSEMENT OF TRAVEL EXPENSES INCURRED ON OCTOBER 18 AND 19, 1925, IN TRAVELING FROM INDIANAPOLIS, IND., TO WASHINGTON, D.C., UNDER ORDERS DATED SEPTEMBER 10, 1925.

BY LETTER OF SEPTEMBER 10, 1925, CLAIMANT WAS "AUTHORIZED TO INCUR EXPENSES FOR THE PURPOSES ENUMERATED AND DURING THE PERIOD INDICATED IN THE PERFORMANCE OF OFFICIAL DUTY," AND TO "PROCEED ON OR ABOUT OCTOBER 7, 1925, TO INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA, FOR THE PURPOSE OF ASSISTING IN THE STUDENTS' JUDGING CONTEST TO BE HELD IN CONNECTION WITH THE NATIONAL DAIRY EXPOSITION, OCTOBER 9 TO 17, INCLUSIVE.'

IN EXPLAINING THE NATURE OF THE DUTY PERFORMED UNDER THE ORDER THE BUREAU OF DAIRY INDUSTRY REPORTED TO THIS OFFICE UNDER DATE OF OCTOBER 21, 1926, AS FOLLOWS:

YOU ARE INFORMED, IN REPLY, THAT THE CONTEST IN WHICH MR. POSSON PARTICIPATED WAS A CONTEST OF STUDENTS OF VARIOUS EDUCATIONAL INSTITUTIONS IN THE JUDGING OF DAIRY CATTLE. SIMILAR CONTESTS ARE HELD ANNUALLY IN CONJUNCTION WITH THE NATIONAL DAIRY EXPOSITIONS AND THE BUREAU OF DAIRY INDUSTRY COOPERATES WITH THE OFFICIALS OF THE EXPOSITION IN SUPERVISING THE CONTESTS. WHILE THE PRIMARY PURPOSE OF THESE CONTESTS IS, OF COURSE, TO TRAIN STUDENTS IN THE SELECTION OF REPRESENTATIVE TYPES OF VARIOUS BREEDS OF DAIRY ANIMALS, THE WORK IS IN LINE WITH THE PROJECT OF THE BUREAU TO INCREASE THE AVERAGE MILK AND BUTTERFAT PRODUCTION OF AMERICAN DAIRY COWS THROUGH PROPER SELECTION OF ANIMALS, BOTH MALES AND FEMALES. EMPLOYEES OF THIS BUREAU DO NOT ACT AS JUDGES IN ANY CONTEST. THEY MERELY ACT AS DIRECTORS OF GROUPS OF CONTESTANTS, BEING RESPONSIBLE FOR KEEPING THE CONTESTANTS CONSTANTLY UNDER SUPERVISION AND FOR DIRECTING THEIR ACTIVITIES IN THE JUDGING ARENA.

IT APPEARS THAT CLAIMANT RECEIVED THE INSTRUCTIONS HEREINBEFORE MENTIONED WHILE ON DUTY AT WASHINGTON, HIS REGULAR STATION; THAT HE WAS GRANTED LEAVE OF ABSENCE FROM SEPTEMBER 14 TO OCTOBER 7, 1925, INCLUSIVE; THAT HE PROCEEDED FROM WASHINGTON TO LINCOLN, NEBR., AT HIS OWN EXPENSE WHILE ON LEAVE OF ABSENCE; THAT HE RETURNED FROM LINCOLN TO INDIANAPOLIS, IND., AT HIS OWN EXPENSE ON THE EXPIRATION OF HIS LEAVE OF ABSENCE, RESUMING HIS DUTY STATUS AT INDIANAPOLIS OCTOBER 8, 1925, IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE ORDERS ISSUED UNDER COMPETENT AUTHORITY UNDER DATE OF SEPTEMBER 10, 1925; THAT HE WAS ON DUTY AT THAT PLACE FROM OCTOBER 8 TO 18, 1925, ON WHICH LATTER DATE HE PROCEEDED TO HIS REGULAR DUTY STATION AT WASHINGTON, D.C., PAYING THE REGULAR RAILROAD FARE OF $24.10 TOGETHER WITH $6 PULLMAN FARE, 25 CENTS PORTER TIP, AND 8 CENTS STREET-CAR FARE.

IT IS WELL ESTABLISHED THAT AN EMPLOYEE WHO IS ON LEAVE OF ABSENCE AWAY FROM HIS REGULAR DUTY STATION IS NOT ENTITLED TO REIMBURSEMENT FOR TRAVELING EXPENSES INCURRED IN RETURNING THERETO, EITHER AT THE TERMINATION OF THE LEAVE OF ABSENCE OR UPON RECALL. 2 COMP. GEN. 424; 3 ID. 760. IN THE INSTANT MATTER, HOWEVER, CLAIMANT WAS NOT REQUIRED TO RETURN TO HIS REGULAR DUTY STATION, BUT ON THE CONTRARY WAS ORDERED TO REPORT ON OR ABOUT OCTOBER 8, 1925, AT INDIANAPOLIS, IND., FOR DUTY. UPON SO REPORTING HE RESUMED HIS DUTY STATUS ENTITLING HIM TO REIMBURSEMENT OF SUBSISTENCE AND TRAVELING EXPENSES INCURRED ON THE PUBLIC BUSINESS THEREAFTER. CLAIMANT IS, THEREFORE, ENTITLED TO REIMBURSEMENT OF THE AMOUNT PAID BY HIM AS RAILROAD AND PULLMAN FARE AND OTHER NECESSARY TRAVELING EXPENSES IN RETURNING TO WASHINGTON, D.C., NOTWITHSTANDING THE FACT THAT THERE WAS A FARE AND ONE-HALF RATE IN EFFECT FROM WASHINGTON, D.C., TO INDIANAPOLIS AND RETURN DURING THE PERIOD IN WHICH THE TRAVEL WAS PERFORMED. THE FACT IS THAT BY PLACING HIMSELF AT INDIANAPOLIS FOR DUTY WITHOUT EXPENSE TO THE GOVERNMENT, INSTEAD OF REMAINING IN OR RETURNING TO WASHINGTON AND PROCEEDING FROM WASHINGTON TO INDIANAPOLIS AND RETURN AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE, A SAVING WAS EFFECTED WHICH INURED TO THE BENEFIT OF THE GOVERNMENT, EVEN TAKING INTO CONSIDERATION THE LOWER RATE IN EFFECT AT THE TIME, WHICH COULD NOT BE AVAILED OF FOR ONLY THE RETURN TRAVEL FROM INDIANAPOLIS TO WASHINGTON, D.C.

UPON REVIEW THERE IS CERTIFIED DUE CLAIMANT THE SUM OF $30.43 AS COST OF TRAVELING EXPENSES INCURRED, FOR WHICH AMOUNT CHECK WILL ISSUE IN DUE COURSE.