A-16978, JUNE 9, 1927, 6 COMP. GEN. 797

A-16978: Jun 9, 1927

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SUBSISTENCE - SICK IN HOSPITAL - RETIRED ENLISTED MAN OF NAVY WHERE A RETIRED ENLISTED MAN OF THE NAVY WAS ADMITTED TO THE NAVAL HOME AT PHILADELPHIA. THE LATTER INSTITUTION IS ENTITLED. WHEREIN WAS COLLECTED BY OFFSET $60.75. DIAMOND WAS ADMITTED AS A BENEFICIARY OF THE NAVAL HOME. WAS TRANSFERRED TO THE NAVAL HOSPITAL. WHERE HE WAS UNDER OBSERVATION AND TREATMENT UNTIL JULY 30. IT IS URGED THAT HE WAS ADMITTED TO THE NAVAL HOSPITAL. IS THE INSTITUTION FOR WHICH PROVISION IS THEREIN MADE. THERE ARE NO STATUTORY PROVISIONS AUTHORIZING THE ADMISSION OF A RETIRED MAN TO THE HOME OR CONCERNING THE DISPOSITION OF HIS PAY IF HE BE ADMITTED THERETO. PARAGRAPH 152A PROVIDES THAT THE GOVERNOR OF THE HOME SHALL HAVE THE SAME CONTROL OVER THE PAY OF RETIRED ENLISTED MEN OF THE NAVY AND MARINE CORPS IN THE NAVAL HOME IN THE SAME MANNER AND UNDER THE SAME REGULATIONS AS ARE PRESCRIBED FOR PENSIONS OF BENEFICIARIES OF THE HOME.

A-16978, JUNE 9, 1927, 6 COMP. GEN. 797

SUBSISTENCE - SICK IN HOSPITAL - RETIRED ENLISTED MAN OF NAVY WHERE A RETIRED ENLISTED MAN OF THE NAVY WAS ADMITTED TO THE NAVAL HOME AT PHILADELPHIA, PA., AND LATER TRANSFERRED TO A NAVAL HOSPITAL FOR OBSERVATION AND TREATMENT, THE LATTER INSTITUTION IS ENTITLED, BY REASON OF THE PROVISIONS OF SECTION 4812, REVISED STATUTES, TO AN ALLOWANCE EQUAL TO THE VALUE OF THE HOSPITAL RATION AS FIXED BY THE ACT OF FEBRUARY 11, 1925, 43 STAT. 873, AT 75 CENTS A DAY, AND SUCH AMOUNT SHOULD BE DEBITED IN THE ACCOUNT OF THE MAN WITH THE GOVERNMENT.

DECISION BY COMPTROLLER GENERAL MCCARL, JUNE 9, 1927:

THERE HAS BEEN RECEIVED, BY REFERENCE OF THE CHIEF, BUREAU OF SUPPLIES AND ACCOUNTS, NAVY DEPARTMENT, LETTER OF ISABEL DIAMOND OF JANUARY 30, 1927, ADDRESSED TO THE GOVERNOR, NAVAL HOME, IN WHICH SHE QUESTIONS THE CORRECTNESS OF SETTLEMENT NO. 0134338-N, DATED OCTOBER 19, 1926, WHEREIN WAS COLLECTED BY OFFSET $60.75, FOR HOSPITAL RATIONS FROM MAY 11 TO JULY 30, 1926, FROM THE PAY DUE HER HUSBAND, DANIEL PATRICK DIAMOND, LATE C.C.S., UNITED STATES NAVY, RETIRED, AT DATE OF HIS DEATH AUGUST 14, 1926.

THE GOVERNOR, UNITED STATES NAVAL HOME, REPORTED MARCH 8, 1927, THAT DANIEL P. DIAMOND WAS ADMITTED AS A BENEFICIARY OF THE NAVAL HOME, PHILADELPHIA, PA., ON MAY 8, 1926, AND WAS TRANSFERRED TO THE NAVAL HOSPITAL, LEAGUE ISLAND, PA., MAY 10, 1926, WHERE HE WAS UNDER OBSERVATION AND TREATMENT UNTIL JULY 30, 1926, WHEN HE LEFT THE HOSPITAL FOR HIS HOME IN CLAYTON, N.J., WHERE HE DIED AUGUST 14, 1926.

IT IS URGED THAT HE WAS ADMITTED TO THE NAVAL HOSPITAL, LEAGUE ISLAND, PA., FROM THE NAVAL HOME AND THAT BENEFICIARIES THEREOF SHOULD NOT BE REQUIRED TO PAY FOR HOSPITAL RATIONS WHILE UNDER TREATMENT AT THAT NAVAL HOSPITAL.

SECTION 4810, REVISED STATUTES, AS AMENDED BY THE ACT OF MARCH 4, 1913, 37 STAT. 902, PROVIDES FOR THE ESTABLISHMENT OF NAVAL HOSPITALS AND AT ONE OF THE ESTABLISHMENTS, A PERMANENT ASYLUM FOR DISABLED AND DECREPIT NAVY OFFICERS, SEAMEN, AND MARINES, AND SECTION 4811, REVISED STATUTES, PROVIDES THAT IT SHALL BE GOVERNED IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE RULES AND REGULATIONS PRESCRIBED BY THE SECRETARY OF THE NAVY. THE NAVAL HOME, PHILADELPHIA, IS THE INSTITUTION FOR WHICH PROVISION IS THEREIN MADE.

THERE ARE NO STATUTORY PROVISIONS AUTHORIZING THE ADMISSION OF A RETIRED MAN TO THE HOME OR CONCERNING THE DISPOSITION OF HIS PAY IF HE BE ADMITTED THERETO, BUT PARAGRAPH 8 (C) OF THE NAVAL HOME REGULATIONS, 1916, PROVIDES FOR THE ADMISSION TO THE HOME OF RETIRED ENLISTED MEN OF THE NAVY OR MARINE CORPS UNABLE TO SUPPORT THEMSELVES BY MANUAL LABOR, AND PARAGRAPH 152A PROVIDES THAT THE GOVERNOR OF THE HOME SHALL HAVE THE SAME CONTROL OVER THE PAY OF RETIRED ENLISTED MEN OF THE NAVY AND MARINE CORPS IN THE NAVAL HOME IN THE SAME MANNER AND UNDER THE SAME REGULATIONS AS ARE PRESCRIBED FOR PENSIONS OF BENEFICIARIES OF THE HOME. THERE IS NO PROVISION CONCERNING THEIR SUBSISTENCE AND CLOTHING WHILE BENEFICIARIES OF THE HOME. HOWEVER, BY REASON OF THE LETTER OF THE SECRETARY OF THE NAVY OF MARCH 9, 1916, DIRECTING THE CANCELLATION OF AGREEMENTS REQUIRING THAT RETIRED ENLISTED MEN FORFEIT THEIR RETIRED PAY AS A CONDITION OF ADMISSION TO THE HOME, IT WOULD APPEAR THAT THEY ARE ADMITTED THERETO WITHOUT ANY CHARGE FOR THEIR SUPPORT. WHILE IT WAS HELD IN THE DECISION OF JULY 19, 1916, 23 COMP. DEC. 28, THAT THE FURNISHING OF SUBSISTENCE AND CLOTHING TO BENEFICIARIES OF THE HOME WAS A QUESTION RELATING TO PROPERTY ACCOUNTING, IT WAS THEREIN STATED THAT---

IT IS NOT UNDERSTOOD WHY THESE MEN SHOULD BE FURNISHED SUBSISTENCE AND CLOTHING AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE IN ADDITION TO THEIR RETIRED PAY, AS SUCH PAY IS INTENDED TO COVER THE EXPENSES OF THEIR SUPPORT AND IS PRESUMABLY SUFFICIENT FOR THAT PURPOSE, * * *.

DANIEL P. DIAMOND WAS IN RECEIPT OF RETIRED PAY AT THE RATE OF $133.88 A MONTH, OF WHICH $15.75 CONSTITUTED COMMUTATION OF RATIONS, CLOTHING, QUARTERS, FUEL, AND LIGHT, ACT OF MARCH 2, 1907, 34 STAT. 1217. HE SEEMS TO HAVE BEEN ADMITTED TO THE NAVAL HOME FOR THE PURPOSE OF SECURING MEDICAL TREATMENT AT THE NAVAL HOSPITAL, LEAGUE ISLAND, PA., AND WAS SUBJECT TO THE LAWS AND REGULATIONS APPLICABLE TO ADMISSION TO THE LATTER INSTITUTION. 5 COMP. GEN. 243.

SECTION 4812, REVISED STATUTES, PROVIDES:

FOR EVERY NAVY OFFICER, SEAMAN, OR MARINE ADMITTED INTO A NAVY HOSPITAL, THE INSTITUTION SHALL BE ALLOWED ONE RATION PER DAY DURING HIS CONTINUANCE THEREIN, TO BE DEDUCTED FROM THE ACCOUNT OF THE UNITED STATES WITH SUCH OFFICER, SEAMAN, OR MARINE.

THE NAVAL HOSPITAL AT LEAGUE ISLAND, PA., IS ENTITLED, UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF THIS SECTION OF THE REVISED STATUTES, TO THE VALUE OF A HOSPITAL RATION, FIXED BY THE ACT OF FEBRUARY 11, 1925, 43 STAT. 873, AT 75 CENTS A DAY, DURING THE PERIOD THAT DIAMOND WAS UNDERGOING TREATMENT THEREIN. 5 COMP. GEN. 243; 26 COMP. DEC. 785.

WHERE A PATIENT ENTERS A NAVAL HOSPITAL FROM A STATUS OF ACTIVE DUTY AND IS ENTITLED TO SUBSISTENCE UNDER THE APPROPRIATION "PROVISIONS, NAVY," PAYMENT TO THE HOSPITAL FUND IS AUTHORIZED TO BE MADE FROM THAT APPROPRIATION, BUT THERE IS NO LAW PROVIDING FOR THE PAYMENT BY THE GOVERNMENT FOR SUBSISTENCE OF RETIRED ENLISTED MEN WHILE PATIENTS IN NAVAL HOSPITALS IN ADDITION TO THE COMMUTED VALUE OF RATIONS INCLUDED IN THEIR RETIRED PAY, AND THIS, WHETHER THEY ARE ADMITTED DIRECTLY TO THE HOSPITAL OR ARE TRANSFERRED THERETO BY THE NAVAL HOME.

THE RETIRED PAY OF ENLISTED MEN IS NOT FORFEITED UPON ADMISSION TO THE NAVAL HOME, BUT, UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF PARAGRAPH 152-A OF THE HOME REGULATIONS IS FOR PAYMENT TO THE TREASURER OF THE NAVAL HOME, TO BE DISPOSED OF BY HIM IN THE SAME MANNER AND UNDER THE SAME REGULATIONS AS ARE PRESCRIBED FOR PENSIONS OF BENEFICIARIES OF THE HOME UNDER THE ACT OF JUNE 30, 1914, 38 STAT. 398, AND THE CORRECT PROCEDURE IS TO DEBIT THE HOSPITAL RATION IN THE BENEFICIARY'S ACCOUNT.

IT WOULD APPEAR THAT THE RATION WAS NOT DEBITED CURRENTLY IN DIAMOND'S ACCOUNT DURING THE PERIOD HE WAS A PATIENT IN THE NAVAL HOSPITAL. THE GOVERNOR OF THE NAVAL HOME STATED MARCH 8, 1927, THAT HE "WAS CARRIED ON THE ROLLS OF THE NAVAL HOME.' HIS NAME IS NOT FOUND ON THE NAVAL HOME PAY ROLLS, BUT APPEARS ON THE REGULAR RETIRED ROLLS, AND CHECKS APPEAR TO HAVE BEEN SENT DIRECTLY TO HIM AT HIS OWN HOME, WITHOUT CURRENT DEBIT OF THE HOSPITAL RATION.

THE SETTLEMENT DEBITING THE ACCOUNT OF DANIEL P. DIAMOND WITH THE VALUE OF A HOSPITAL RATION WHILE IN THE HOSPITAL WAS CORRECT, AND UPON REVIEW MUST BE AND IS SUSTAINED.