A-17733, APRIL 9, 1927, 6 COMP. GEN. 662

A-17733: Apr 9, 1927

Additional Materials:

Contact:

Edda Emmanuelli Perez
(202) 512-2853
EmmanuelliPerezE@gao.gov

 

Office of Public Affairs
(202) 512-4800
youngc1@gao.gov

ARE BY THEIR NATURE FOR PERFORMANCE AT A PARTICULAR PLACE AND THE PROMOTION AND TRANSFER OF A MATRON FROM DUTY IN GRADE 4 AT THE LEUPP AGENCY. IN SUPPORT OF YOUR REQUEST IT IS STATED AS FOLLOWS: MRS. CASTO WAS APPOINTED HEAD MATRON IN THE INDIAN FIELD SERVICE AND ASSIGNED TEMPORARILY TO DUTY AT THE ROSEBUD AGENCY. IT IS REQUESTED THAT YOU RECONSIDER THE DISALLOWANCE IN THIS CASE. AS TO OTHER TRANSFERS OF FIELD EMPLOYEES IT WAS STATED: * * * POSITIONS IN THE GOVERNMENT SERVICE WHICH MAY BE CLASSED AS ADMINISTRATIVE BY REASON OF THE DUTIES MAY NOT BE CLASSED AS FIELD SERVICE POSITIONS UNDER WHICH THE HOLDER OF THE POSITION MAY BE PLACED ANYWHERE AT THE EXPENSE OF THE UNITED STATES. THE GENERAL RULE IS THAT AN EMPLOYEE WHETHER ORIGINALLY APPOINTED OR ALREADY IN THE SERVICE OF THE GOVERNMENT.

A-17733, APRIL 9, 1927, 6 COMP. GEN. 662

TRAVELING EXPENSES - TRANSFERS BETWEEN FIELD STATIONS THE SERVICES OF A MATRON, INDIAN SERVICE, ARE BY THEIR NATURE FOR PERFORMANCE AT A PARTICULAR PLACE AND THE PROMOTION AND TRANSFER OF A MATRON FROM DUTY IN GRADE 4 AT THE LEUPP AGENCY, ARIZONA, TO DUTY IN GRADE 6 AT THE ROSEBUD AGENCY IN SOUTH DAKOTA, THE APPROPRIATIONS PROPOSED TO BE USED FOR THE TRAVELING EXPENSES NOT BEING EQUALLY AVAILABLE FOR EXPENSES AT EITHER STATION, CONSTITUTION IN FACT A DISCHARGE AND REAPPOINTMENT TO A NEW POSITION AND THE EXPENSES INCURRED IN TRAVELING TO THE NEW DUTY STATION MUST BE BORNE BY THE EMPLOYEE.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL MCCARL TO THE SECRETARY OF THE INTERIOR, APRIL 9, 1927:

CONSIDERATION HAS BEEN GIVEN YOUR LETTER OF MARCH 11, 1927, REQUESTING REVIEW OF SETTLEMENT 0155310 OF OCTOBER 5, 1926, DISALLOWING THE CLAIM OF ESTELLA B. CASTO, HEAD MATRON IN THE INDIAN FIELD SERVICE, FOR REIMBURSEMENT OF TRAVELING EXPENSES INCURRED IN EFFECTING HER TRANSFER FROM THE LEUPP AGENCY, ARIZ., TO THE ROSEBUD, S.DAK., AGENCY. IN SUPPORT OF YOUR REQUEST IT IS STATED AS FOLLOWS:

MRS. CASTO WAS APPOINTED HEAD MATRON IN THE INDIAN FIELD SERVICE AND ASSIGNED TEMPORARILY TO DUTY AT THE ROSEBUD AGENCY. IN VIEW OF YOUR DECISION OF JULY 31, 1926, IN THE VETERANS' BUREAU CASE (A-14597) THAT EMPLOYEES APPOINTED TO THE FIELD SERVICE GENERALLY AND NOT FOR PERMANENT DUTY AT ANY PARTICULAR PLACE, MAY BE PAID THEIR TRAVELING EXPENSES. IT IS REQUESTED THAT YOU RECONSIDER THE DISALLOWANCE IN THIS CASE.

THE DECISION CITED BY YOU, A-14597 (6 COMP. GEN. 92), PERMITTED THE TRANSFER AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE WHEN NECESSARY IN THE INTEREST OF THE GOVERNMENT, OF PHYSICIANS, DENTISTS, AND NURSES IN THE VETERANS' BUREAU SERVICE UNDER THE STATUTORY PROVISIONS THEREFOR IN THE ACT OF APRIL 22, 1926, 44 STAT. 319, BUT AS TO OTHER TRANSFERS OF FIELD EMPLOYEES IT WAS STATED:

* * * POSITIONS IN THE GOVERNMENT SERVICE WHICH MAY BE CLASSED AS ADMINISTRATIVE BY REASON OF THE DUTIES MAY NOT BE CLASSED AS FIELD SERVICE POSITIONS UNDER WHICH THE HOLDER OF THE POSITION MAY BE PLACED ANYWHERE AT THE EXPENSE OF THE UNITED STATES. THE GENERAL RULE IS THAT AN EMPLOYEE WHETHER ORIGINALLY APPOINTED OR ALREADY IN THE SERVICE OF THE GOVERNMENT, APPOINTED FOR DUTY AT ANOTHER PLACE, MUST PLACE HIMSELF THERE AT HIS OWN EXPENSE. ONLY THOSE EMPLOYED FOR AND ACTUALLY ENGAGED UPON FIELD WORK AND WHOSE EMPLOYMENT AND DUTIES CLEARLY CONTEMPLATE SERVICE IN DIFFERENT PLACES AS THE NEEDS MAY REQUIRE, MAY LAWFULLY BE SHIFTED FROM PLACE TO PLACE IN SUCH WORK AT THE EXPENSE OF THE UNITED STATES. IT IS NOT A MATTER OF ADMINISTRATIVE CONVENIENCE OR DISCRETION BUT IT IS NECESSARILY CONTROLLED BY THE CHARACTER OF THE DUTIES AND THE TERMS OF THE EMPLOYMENT. THE RECORDS SHOW THAT IN THE SERVICE OF THE VETERANS' BUREAU A LIBRARIAN, AN ASSISTANT LIBRARIAN, A PAINTER'S HELPER, AN ASSISTANT PROPERTY CUSTODIAN, A BUSINESS EXECUTIVE, AND A TEACHER IN COMMERCIAL ART WERE AMONG THOSE TRANSFERRED FROM ONE PLACE TO ANOTHER AT THE EXPENSE OF THE UNITED STATES. THIS CLASS OF EMPLOYEES MAY NOT GENERALLY BE CONSIDERED AS IN A FIELD SERVICE. LIKEWISE, EMPLOYEES CONNECTED WITH A PARTICULAR OFFICE AT A PARTICULAR PLACE SUCH AS REGIONAL DIRECTORS, ATTORNEYS, OR CLAIMS EXAMINERS ARE OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE CLASS AND IF THEY DESIRE APPOINTMENT AT ANOTHER PLACE IT IS AN APPOINTMENT TO A NEW POSITION IN WHATEVER CAPACITY AT SUCH OTHER PLACE, REQUIRING THAT SUCH EMPLOYEE PUT HIMSELF AT THE NEW PLACE OF EMPLOYMENT AT HIS OWN EXPENSE AND NOT AT THE EXPENSE OF THE UNITED STATES.

THE ORDERS ISSUED TO MRS. CASTO DO NOT INDICATE THAT THE DUTY AT THE ROSEBUD AGENCY IS OTHER THAN PERMANENT AND IT IS NOT SHOWN THAT THE DUTIES OF A MATRON ARE SUCH AS TO REQUIRE HER TO MOVE FROM PLACE TO PLACE. THE DECISION OF MARCH 19, 1927, A-17697, 6 COMP. GEN. 602, THE FOLLOWING CONDITIONS WERE LAID DOWN UPON WHICH TRANSFERS IN THE FIELD SERVICE MIGHT BE PERMITTED AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE:

FIRST. THAT THE SERVICE IS FIELD DUTY AND THAT THE EMPLOYEE IS APPOINTED FOR GENERAL FIELD DUTY AND NOT FOR SERVICE AT A PARTICULAR PLACE OR WITHIN A LIMITED DISTRICT.

SECOND. THAT THE APPROPRIATION TO BE CHARGED WITH THE EXPENSE INCURRED IN THE TRAVEL BETWEEN THE TWO STATIONS IS EQUALLY AVAILABLE FOR WORK TO BE PERFORMED AT EITHER STATION.

THIRD. THAT THE DUTY REQUIRED OF THE EMPLOYEE AT BOTH THE OLD AND THE NEW STATIONS IS OF THE SAME GENERAL CHARACTER AND THAT IT IS SUCH AS TO REQUIRE THE EMPLOYEE TO MOVE FROM PLACE TO PLACE IN THE FIELD FOR ITS PERFORMANCE.

FOURTH. THAT THE HEAD OF THE DEPARTMENT OR ESTABLISHMENT OR THE OFFICER AUTHORIZED TO ISSUE THE NECESSARY TRAVEL ORDERS, CERTIFIES ON THE FACTS THAT THE TRANSFER ORIGINATED FROM A GOVERNMENT NEED AND IS NOT FOR THE PERSONAL CONVENIENCE OR DESIRES OF THE EMPLOYEE.

THE APPROPRIATION SOUGHT TO BE CHARGED IN THIS CASE "EDUCATION, SIOUX NATION, 1926," 43 STAT. 1158, IS NOT APPLICABLE FOR EXPENSES OR SALARIES OF EMPLOYEES AT THE LEUPP AGENCY IN ARIZONA. IT IS NOT SHOWN THAT THE DUTIES OF MATRON, GRADE 4, AND MATRON (HEAD) GRADE 6, ARE OF THE SAME GENERAL CHARACTER AND AS INDICATED ABOVE, IT IS NOT ESTABLISHED THAT THE DUTIES OF A MATRON OR HEAD MATRON ARE SUCH AS AUTHORIZE HER APPOINTMENT TO FIELD SERVICE GENERALLY, THERE BEING NO EVIDENCE THAT THE DUTIES ARE SUCH AS TO REQUIRE HER MOVEMENT FROM PLACE TO PLACE WITHIN THE FIELD. IT MUST BE CONCLUDED, THEREFORE, THAT THE PROMOTION AND TRANSFER OF MRS. CASTO WAS THE EQUIVALENT OF A DISCHARGE AND A REAPPOINTMENT AND THAT IT WAS INCUMBENT UPON HER TO PLACE HERSELF AT HER NEW DUTY STATION AT HER OWN EXPENSE. SEE A 16035, NOVEMBER 16, 1926; A-16059, OCTOBER 28, 1926; A- 16210, NOVEMBER 20, 1926, ALL INVOLVING SIMILAR TRANSFERS IN THE INDIAN SERVICE.