A-17626, MARCH 11, 1927, 6 COMP. GEN. 569

A-17626: Mar 11, 1927

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IS EFFECTIVE FROM THE DATE THE ERROR WAS MADE. IF THE CARRIER IS OTHERWISE ENTITLED TO THE INCREASED RATE FROM SAID DATE. WHO WAS FORMERLY CARRIER ON RURAL ROUTE NO. 4. WHO IS STILL IN THE SERVICE. THE LENGTH OF THE ROUTE WAS 22.3 MILES. RURAL CARRIERS SERVING ROUTES 20 MILES AND LESS THAN 22 MILES IN LENGTH ARE PAID A SALARY OF $1. WHILE THOSE SERVING ROUTES OF 22 MILES AND LESS THAN 24 MILES ARE PAID A SALARY OF $1. THE MATTER IS PRESENTED TO YOU FOR YOUR DECISION WHETHER THIS CLAIM AND OTHERS OF LIKE CHARACTER THAT MAY BE SUBMITTED MAY PROPERLY BE RECOGNIZED BY THE DEPARTMENT AND ADDITIONAL PAYMENT TO CARRIERS AUTHORIZED IN VIEW OF THE PROVISIONS OF THE ACT OF APRIL 24. WHICH RECORDS SHALL BE PROMPTLY CORRECTED WHENEVER THE POSTMASTER GENERAL DETERMINES THAT SUCH RECORDS ARE NOT CORRECT.

A-17626, MARCH 11, 1927, 6 COMP. GEN. 569

POSTAL SERVICE - EFFECTIVE DATE OF CHANGE IN RATE OF PAY OF RURAL CARRIERS A CHANGE IN THE RATE OF COMPENSATION OF A RURAL LETTER CARRIER, BASED ON THE CORRECTION OF AN ERROR IN TOTALING THE DISTANCES OF THE VARIOUS PORTIONS OF THE ROUTE, APPARENT ON THE FACE OF THE RECORDS OF THE POST OFFICE DEPARTMENT, IS EFFECTIVE FROM THE DATE THE ERROR WAS MADE, IF THE CARRIER IS OTHERWISE ENTITLED TO THE INCREASED RATE FROM SAID DATE. COMP. GEN. 626 DISTINGUISHED.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL MCCARL TO THE POSTMASTER GENERAL, MARCH 11, 1927:

THERE HAS BEEN RECEIVED YOUR LETTER OF MARCH 3, 1927, AS FOLLOWS:

A CLAIM HAS BEEN SUBMITTED TO THIS DEPARTMENT BY MR. WALTER A. RYALS, WHO WAS FORMERLY CARRIER ON RURAL ROUTE NO. 4, GLENWOOD, GEORGIA, BUT WHO IS STILL IN THE SERVICE, FOR ADDITIONAL PAY BASED ON THE GROUND THAT HE RECEIVED A SALARY DURING THE PERIOD FROM OCTOBER 16, 1921, TO AUGUST 16, 1925, FOR A ROUTE OF 21.9 MILES IN LENGTH, WHILE, IN FACT, AS SHOWN BY THE OFFICIAL DESCRIPTION, THE LENGTH OF THE ROUTE WAS 22.3 MILES, THE DISCREPANCY HAVING BEEN DUE TO AN ERROR IN THE ADDITION AS MADE IN THE DEPARTMENT OF THE ITEMS IN THE DESCRIPTION. IT DOES NOT APPEAR THAT THERE HAS BEEN ANY PREVIOUS PRESENTATION OF THIS CLAIM.

UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF LAW, RURAL CARRIERS SERVING ROUTES 20 MILES AND LESS THAN 22 MILES IN LENGTH ARE PAID A SALARY OF $1,620 PER ANNUM, WHILE THOSE SERVING ROUTES OF 22 MILES AND LESS THAN 24 MILES ARE PAID A SALARY OF $1,728 PER ANNUM.

THE MATTER IS PRESENTED TO YOU FOR YOUR DECISION WHETHER THIS CLAIM AND OTHERS OF LIKE CHARACTER THAT MAY BE SUBMITTED MAY PROPERLY BE RECOGNIZED BY THE DEPARTMENT AND ADDITIONAL PAYMENT TO CARRIERS AUTHORIZED IN VIEW OF THE PROVISIONS OF THE ACT OF APRIL 24, 1920, THAT---

"* * * HEREAFTER THE PAY OF RURAL CARRIERS AND SUBSTITUTE RURAL CARRIERS, WHICH DEPENDS UPON THE LENGTH OF THE ROUTE, SHALL BE DETERMINED IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE RECORDS OF THE POST OFFICE DEPARTMENT, WHICH RECORDS SHALL BE PROMPTLY CORRECTED WHENEVER THE POSTMASTER GENERAL DETERMINES THAT SUCH RECORDS ARE NOT CORRECT---" AND YOUR DECISION OF FEBRUARY 13, 1926, TO THE EFFECT THAT THE ACT MENTIONED---

"* * * SPECIFICALLY MAKES THE LENGTH OF ROUTE AS SHOWN BY THE RECORDS OF THE POST OFFICE DEPARTMENT, RATHER THAN THE ACTUAL LENGTH OF ROUTE, THE BASIS FOR DETERMINING THE AMOUNT OF COMPENSATION DUE AND PAYABLE FOR THE ROUTE.

"PAYMENT OF INCREASED COMPENSATION BASED ON A CORRECTION OF THE RECORDS OF THE POST OFFICE DEPARTMENT AS TO THE LENGTH OF A RURAL LETTER CARRIER'S ROUTE IS NOT AUTHORIZED FOR ANY PERIOD PRIOR TO THE EFFECTIVE DATE OF THE CORRECTION AS FIXED UNDER THE RULE ADOPTED BY THE POST OFFICE DEPARTMENT.'

A COPY OF THE DESCRIPTION OF ROUTE NO. 4, GLENWOOD, GEORGIA, AS ORDERED, EFFECTIVE OCTOBER 16, 1921, IS HEREWITH FOR YOUR INFORMATION AND TO CONFIRM THE CARRIER'S ALLEGATION THAT AN ERROR IN ADDITION HAD BEEN MADE BY THE DEPARTMENT AT THE TIME THE DESCRIPTION WAS PREPARED AND ISSUED.

THERE MAY BE A QUESTION AS TO THE MEANING OF THE PHRASE "RECORDS OF THE DEPARTMENT.' THE OFFICIAL DESCRIPTION OF A ROUTE SHOWS THE REQUIRED ITINERARY OF THE CARRIER WITH THE DETERMINED DISTANCES BETWEEN DESCRIPTIVE POINTS, TOGETHER WITH THE TOTAL OF THE ITEMIZED DISTANCES, AND THIS TOTAL IS TRANSFERRED TO THE CARD RECORDS OF THE DEPARTMENT MAINTAINED TO SHOW THE LENGTHS OF THE SEVERAL ROUTES AND THE PROPER BASIS FOR THE PAYMENT OF THE SALARIES OF THE CARRIERS SERVING THEM.

AS THE ERROR IN THIS CASE WAS MERELY A CLERICAL ONE, APPARENT UPON THE FACE OF THE RECORD AND THE RECORD ITSELF CLEARLY SHOWED THE LENGTH OF THE RESPECTIVE PORTIONS OF THE ROUTE TO AGGREGATE THE TOTAL NOW CLAIMED, THE RURAL CARRIER WOULD APPEAR TO BE ENTITLED TO THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE AMOUNT ACTUALLY RECEIVED BY HIM AND THE AMOUNT DUE FOR SERVICE ON THE LONGER ROUTE FOR THE ENTIRE TIME SINCE THE ERROR WAS MADE UPON THE RECORD IF HE SERVED THE IDENTICAL ROUTE DURING SAID PERIOD. THIS CASE IS DISTINGUISHED FROM THE CASE INVOLVED IN DECISION OF FEBRUARY 13, 1926, 5 COMP. GEN. 626, IN WHICH THE ERROR, IF ANY, WAS NOT APPARENT UPON THE FACE OF THE RECORDS.

AS THE CLAIM INVOLVES A LAPSED APPROPRIATION, IT SHOULD BE SUBMITTED TO THIS OFFICE FOR DIRECT SETTLEMENT IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE FOREGOING.