A-21183, JANUARY 25, 1928, 7 COMP. GEN. 439

A-21183: Jan 25, 1928

Additional Materials:

Contact:

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

 

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

IS BASED ON THE RATING HELD WHEN THE TERM FOR WHICH THE MAN ENLISTED EXPIRED AS AFFECTED BY THE DURATION OF THAT TERM. IF AN ENLISTMENT IN THE NAVY IS EXTENDED FOR ONE YEAR AND REEXTENDED FOR TWO YEARS THE EXTENSION AGGREGATES THREE YEARS (AN ENLISTMENT PERIOD). THE MAN IS ENTITLED TO ENLISTMENT ALLOWANCE BASED ON THE RATING HELD WHEN THE ORIGINAL TERM OF ENLISTMENT WAS DUE TO EXPIRE. " AND SUBSTITUTE THE FOLLOWING: "NO ENLISTMENT ALLOWANCE IS PAYABLE FOR A ONE-YEAR EXTENSION STANDING ALONE. IF A ONE-YEAR EXTENSION IS REEXTENDED SO THAT THE EXTENSION AGGREGATES TWO OR MORE YEARS. THE GRADE HELD AT THE END OF THE ONE-YEAR EXTENSION DETERMINES WHETHER THE ENLISTMENT ALLOWANCE WILL BE A MULTIPLE OF $50 OR $25.

A-21183, JANUARY 25, 1928, 7 COMP. GEN. 439

GRATUITIES - ENLISTMENT ALLOWANCE - NAVY ENLISTED MEN UNDER THE LAW (ACT OF AUGUST 22, 1912, 37 STAT. 331, AND SECTION 103 OF THE ACT OF JUNE 10, 1922, 42 STAT. 630), THE MEASURE OF ENLISTMENT ALLOWANCE ACCRUING IN ANY CASE BY REASON OF EXTENSION OF ENLISTMENT IN THE NAVY, WHETHER EXTENDED BY ONE OR MORE AGREEMENTS, IS BASED ON THE RATING HELD WHEN THE TERM FOR WHICH THE MAN ENLISTED EXPIRED AS AFFECTED BY THE DURATION OF THAT TERM. IF AN ENLISTMENT IN THE NAVY IS EXTENDED FOR ONE YEAR AND REEXTENDED FOR TWO YEARS THE EXTENSION AGGREGATES THREE YEARS (AN ENLISTMENT PERIOD), AND THE MAN IS ENTITLED TO ENLISTMENT ALLOWANCE BASED ON THE RATING HELD WHEN THE ORIGINAL TERM OF ENLISTMENT WAS DUE TO EXPIRE, AS AFFECTED BY THE YEARS SERVED IN THAT TERM.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL MCCARL TO THE SECRETARY OF THE NAVY, JANUARY 25, 1928:

THERE HAS BEEN RECEIVED YOUR LETTER OF JANUARY 6, 1928, AS FOLLOWS:

THE NAVY DEPARTMENT HAS UNDER CONSIDERATION THE FOLLOWING PROPOSED REVISION IN SECTION B OF THE "PAY BILL INSTRUCTIONS: "

PAGE B15, STRIKE OUT PARAGRAPHS 3, 4, 5, AND 6, APPEARING UNDER THE WORD "EXAMPLE," AND SUBSTITUTE THE FOLLOWING:

"NO ENLISTMENT ALLOWANCE IS PAYABLE FOR A ONE-YEAR EXTENSION STANDING ALONE, BUT IF A ONE-YEAR EXTENSION IS REEXTENDED SO THAT THE EXTENSION AGGREGATES TWO OR MORE YEARS, A MAN WOULD BE ENTITLED TO AN ENLISTMENT ALLOWANCE DEPENDENT UPON THE TIME SERVED IN THE PERIOD OF ENLISTMENT PLUS TIME SERVED IN THE PERIOD OF EXTENSION. UPON REENLISTMENT WITHIN THREE MONTHS FOLLOWING DISCHARGE FROM AN ENLISTMENT WHICH HAS BEEN EXTENDED FOR ONE YEAR, A MAN WOULD BE ENTITLED TO AN ENLISTMENT ALLOWANCE DEPENDENT UPON THE TIME SERVED IN THE PERIOD OF ENLISTMENT PLUS TIME SERVED IN THE PERIOD OF EXTENSION. THE GRADE HELD AT THE END OF THE ONE-YEAR EXTENSION DETERMINES WHETHER THE ENLISTMENT ALLOWANCE WILL BE A MULTIPLE OF $50 OR $25.

"EXAMPLE

"ENLISTED JULY 10, 1922, FOR FOUR YEARS. RATING ON DATE OF EXPIRATION OF ENLISTMENT, FIREMAN, FIRST CLASS. EXTENDED FOR ONE YEAR EFFECTIVE JULY 10, 1927. RATING ON DATE OF EXPIRATION OF EXTENSION, ENGINE MAN, SECOND CLASS. REEXTENDS FOR TWO YEARS JULY 10, 1928. ENLISTMENT ALLOWANCE PAYABLE ON THE BASIS OF FIVE YEARS' SERVICE COMPUTED AS PRESCRIBED IN (A), (B), AND (C) ABOVE OR 5 TIMES $50, PROVIDED THERE IS NO DEDUCTIBLE TIME.'

ON PAGE B13 OF SECTION B OF THE "PAY BILL INSTRUCTIONS" IT IS PROVIDED:

"THE GRADE HELD AT THE TIME OF DISCHARGE AND NOT THE GRADE IN WHICH REENLISTED DETERMINES WHETHER THE ENLISTMENT ALLOWANCE WILL BE A MULTIPLE OF $50 OR $25.'

THE INSTRUCTIONS ON PAGE B15 OF SECTION B OF THE "PAY BILL INSTRUCTIONS" ARE AS FOLLOWS:

"THE EXTENSION OF AN ENLISTMENT FOR TWO, THREE, OR FOUR YEARS ENTITLES A MAN TO THE ENLISTMENT ALLOWANCE UNDER THE SAME CONDITIONS AS IF HE HAD REENLISTED FOR A LIKE TERM, * * *.

"NO ENLISTMENT ALLOWANCE IS PAYABLE FOR A ONE-YEAR EXTENSION STANDING ALONE, BUT IF A ONE-YEAR EXTENSION IS REEXTENDED, SO THAT THE EXTENSION AGGREGATES TWO OR MORE YEARS, THEN THE ENLISTMENT ALLOWANCE MAY BE PAID IN THE SAME MANNER AS IF THE EXTENSION HAD ORIGINALLY BEEN FOR TWO OR MORE YEARS.

"UPON REENLISTMENT WITHIN THREE MONTHS FOLLOWING DISCHARGE FROM AN ENLISTMENT WHICH HAS BEEN EXTENDED FOR ONE YEAR A MAN WOULD BE ENTITLED TO AN ENLISTMENT ALLOWANCE DEPENDENT UPON THE TIME SERVED IN THE PERIOD OF ENLISTMENT PLUS TIME SERVED IN THE PERIOD OF EXTENSION.'

THE ACT OF AUGUST 22, 1912 (37 STAT. 331; U.S.C., TITLE 34, SECTION 184), PROVIDES:

"THAT THE TERM OF ENLISTMENT OF ANY ENLISTED MAN IN THE NAVY MAY, BY HIS VOLUNTARY WRITTEN AGREEMENT, UNDER SUCH REGULATIONS AS MAY BE PRESCRIBED BY THE SECRETARY OF THE NAVY WITH THE APPROVAL OF THE PRESIDENT, BE EXTENDED FOR A PERIOD OF EITHER ONE, TWO, THREE, OR FOUR FULL YEARS, FROM THE DATE OF EXPIRATION OF THE THEN EXISTING FOUR-YEAR TERM OF ENLISTMENT, AND SUBSEQUENT TO SAID DATE SUCH ENLISTED MEN AS EXTEND THE TERM OF ENLISTMENT AS AUTHORIZED IN THIS SECTION SHALL BE ENTITLED TO AND SHALL RECEIVE THE SAME PAY AND ALLOWANCES IN ALL RESPECTS AS THOUGH REGULARLY DISCHARGED AND REENLISTED IMMEDIATELY UPON EXPIRATION OF THEIR TERM OF ENLISTMENT, AND SUCH EXTENSION SHALL NOT OPERATE TO DEPRIVE THEM UPON DISCHARGE AT THE TERMINATION THEREOF OF ANY RIGHT, PRIVILEGE, OR BENEFIT TO WHICH THEY WOULD BE ENTITLED AT THE EXPIRATION OF A FOUR-YEAR TERM OF ENLISTMENT.'

SECTION 19 OF THE ACT APPROVED MARCH 4, 1925 (43 STAT. 1276; U.S.C., TITLE 34, SECTION 181), READS AS FOLLOWS:

"THAT HEREAFTER ENLISTMENTS IN THE NAVY MAY BE FOR TERMS OF TWO, THREE, FOUR, OR SIX YEARS, AND ALL LAWS NOW APPLICABLE TO FOUR-YEAR ENLISTMENTS SHALL APPLY, UNDER SUCH REGULATIONS AS MAY BE PRESCRIBED BY THE SECRETARY OF THE NAVY, TO ENLISTMENTS FOR A SHORTER OR LONGER PERIOD, WITH PROPORTIONATE BENEFITS UPON DISCHARGE AND REENLISTMENT * * *.'

IT WILL BE SEEN THAT UNDER THE ABOVE-QUOTED STATUTES ENLISTED MEN IN THE NAVY MAY AGREE TO EXTEND THEIR ENLISTMENTS "FOR A PERIOD OF EITHER ONE, TWO, THREE, OR FOUR FULL YEARS" FROM THE DATE OF EXPIRATION OF THE THEN EXISTING TERM OF ENLISTMENT, OR THEY MAY, UPON DISCHARGE, BE REENLISTED FOR A TERM "OF TWO, THREE, FOUR, OR SIX YEARS * * * WITH PROPORTIONATE BENEFITS UPON DISCHARGE AND REENLISTMENT * * *.'

ASSUMING, FOR EXAMPLE, THE CASE OF AN ENLISTED MAN WHO, ON THE EXPIRATION OF A REGULAR FOUR-YEAR ENLISTMENT, HOLDS THE RATING OF FIREMAN, FIRST CLASS, AND AT THE EXPIRATION OF A ONE-YEAR EXTENSION HOLDS THE RATING OF ENGINE MAN, SECOND CLASS. UNDER THE INTERPRETATION OF LAW CONTAINED IN EXISTING INSTRUCTIONS THIS MAN, IF HE REEXTENDS HIS ENLISTMENT FOR TWO YEARS AT THE EXPIRATION OF HIS THEN EXISTING ONE YEAR EXTENSION, WOULD BE ENTITLED TO AN ENLISTMENT ALLOWANCE BASED UPON THE RATING HELD AT THE EXPIRATION OF HIS REGULAR FOUR-YEAR ENLISTMENT, VIZ, FIREMAN, FIRST CLASS, I.E., 4 TIMES $25, OR $100. ON THE OTHER HAND, IF DISCHARGED AT THE EXPIRATION OF HIS ONE-YEAR EXTENSION AND REENLISTED WITHIN THREE MONTHS FROM THE DATE OF DISCHARGE, HE WOULD, UNDER THE INSTRUCTIONS ABOVE QUOTED AND THE COMPTROLLER GENERAL'S DECISION OF AUGUST 9, 1926, PAGE 9716, S. AND A. MEMORANDA, BE ENTITLED TO AN ENLISTMENT ALLOWANCE BASED ON THE RATING HELD AT THE TIME OF DISCHARGE, ENGINE MAN, SECOND CLASS, I.E., 5 TIMES $50, OR $250.

IT IS OBVIOUS FROM THE ABOVE THAT UNDER EXISTING INSTRUCTIONS A GREATER ENLISTMENT ALLOWANCE IS PAYABLE WHERE THE INDIVIDUAL IS DISCHARGED AT EXPIRATION OF A ONE-YEAR EXTENSION AND REENLISTS THAN THAN WOULD BE THE CASE IF HE REEXTENDED HIS ENLISTMENT AT EXPIRATION OF A ONE-YEAR EXTENSION. HOWEVER, IT IS BELIEVED THAT IT IS THE INTENT OF THE ACT OF AUGUST 22, 1912, SUPRA, THAT AN ENLISTED MAN WHO EXTENDS HIS ENLISTMENT FOR ONE YEAR AT EXPIRATION OF A REGULAR FOUR YEAR ENLISTMENT AND FURTHER REEXTENDS HIS ENLISTMENT FOR AN ADDITIONAL TWO YEARS AT EXPIRATION OF THE ONE-YEAR EXTENSION, IS ENTITLED TO THE SAME ENLISTMENT ALLOWANCE AS A MAN WHO IS DISCHARGED AT EXPIRATION OF A ONE-YEAR EXTENSION, OR ON COMPLETION OF FIVE YEARS' SERVICE, AND REENLISTS. IN OTHER WORDS, THE NAVY DEPARTMENT CONSIDERS THAT THE LAW INTENDS THAT AN ENLISTMENT ALLOWANCE OF EITHER $125 OR $250, DEPENDENT UPON RATING HELD AT EXPIRATION OF A ONE- YEAR EXTENSION, IS PAYABLE ON REEXTENSION OF SUCH ONE-YEAR EXTENSIONS OF AN ORIGINAL FOUR YEAR ENLISTMENT.

IN VIEW OF THE ABOVE, YOUR VIEWS ARE RESPECTFULLY REQUESTED AS TO WHETHER THE PROPOSED CHANGES IN SECTION B OF THE "PAY BILL INSTRUCTIONS," AS ABOVE SET FORTH, IN SO FAR AS THEY INVOLVE DISBURSEMENTS, ARE IN CONFORMITY WITH LAW.

PRIOR TO JUNE 4, 1920, THE TERM OF ENLISTMENT IN THE NAVY WAS FOUR YEARS. BY THE ACT OF JUNE 4, 1920, 41 STAT. 836, THE TERM WAS CHANGED TO "TWO, THREE, OR FOUR YEARS" AND ALL LAWS APPLICABLE TO FOUR-YEAR ENLISTMENTS WERE MADE TO APPLY TO SUCH SHORTER PERIODS "WITH PROPORTIONATE BENEFITS UPON DISCHARGE AND REENLISTMENT.' THE PERIOD OF ENLISTMENT WAS FURTHER CHANGED BY THE ACT OF MARCH 4, 1925, 43 STAT. 1276, WHICH AUTHORIZES ENLISTMENTS "FOR TERMS OF TWO, THREE, FOUR, OR SIX YEARS," WITH PROVISION THAT ALL LAWS NOW APPLICABLE TO FOUR-YEAR ENLISTMENTS SHALL APPLY WITH PROPORTIONATE BENEFITS UPON DISCHARGE AND REENLISTMENT.

THE ACT OF AUGUST 22, 1912, AUTHORIZED EXTENSION OF ENLISTMENTS FOR PERIODS OF "ONE, TWO, THREE, OR FOUR FULL YEARS" FROM DATE OF EXPIRATION OF AN ORIGINAL "FOUR-YEAR TERM OF ENLISTMENT," SUCH EXTENSION TO CARRY WITH IT RIGHT TO "THE SAME PAY AND ALLOWANCES IN ALL RESPECTS AS THOUGH REGULARLY DISCHARGED AND REENLISTED IMMEDIATELY UPON EXPIRATION OF THEIR TERM OF ENLISTMENT.'

THE SAME ACT (37 STAT. 330, 331) PROVIDED THAT:

IF ANY ENLISTED MAN * * * BEING HONORABLY DISCHARGED, SHALL REENLIST FOR FOUR YEARS WITHIN FOUR MONTHS THEREAFTER, HE SHALL, ON PRESENTING HIS HONORABLE DISCHARGE OR ON ACCOUNTING IN A SATISFACTORY MANNER FOR ITS LOSS, BE ENTITLED TO A GRATUITY OF FOUR MONTHS' PAY EQUAL IN AMOUNT TO THAT WHICH HE WOULD HAVE RECEIVED IF HE HAD BEEN EMPLOYED IN ACTUAL SERVICE; PROVIDED, THAT ANY ENLISTED MAN IN THE NAVY WHOSE TERM OF ENLISTMENT HAS BEEN EXTENDED FOR AN AGGREGATE OF FOUR YEARS SHALL, AFTER EXPIRATION OF THE PRECEDING FOUR-YEAR TERM OF ENLISTMENT UPON WHICH THE EXTENSION IS MADE * * * BE PAID THE GRATUITY ABOVE PROVIDED: * * *

IT IS THUS APPARENT THAT THE ACT WHICH AUTHORIZES EXTENSION OF ENLISTMENTS RECOGNIZES RIGHTS TO ACCRUE THEREUNDER BY REASON OF THE AGGREGATE OF EXTENSIONS, AND THAT SUCH AGGREGATE EXTENSION APPLIES TO THE ORIGINAL TERM OF ENLISTMENT. THE SUBSEQUENT CHANGES IN THE LAW AUTHORIZING ENLISTMENTS FOR TWO, THREE, FOUR, OR SIX YEARS, AND PROVISION IN SECTION 10 OF THE ACT OF JUNE 10, 1922, 42 STAT. 630, SUBSTITUTING ENLISTMENT ALLOWANCE FOR THE REENLISTMENT GRATUITY, AFFECTED THE RIGHTS THAT ACCRUE BY REASON OF EXTENSION OF ENLISTMENT ONLY TO THE EXTENT OF CHANGING THE TERM OF ENLISTMENT. AS THE LAW AUTHORIZED PAYMENT OF REENLISTMENT GRATUITY WHEN THE EXTENSION AGGREGATED FOUR YEARS SO IT NOW AUTHORIZES PAYMENT OF ENLISTMENT ALLOWANCE WHEN THE EXTENSION AGGREGATES AN ENLISTMENT PERIOD OF TWO, THREE, OR FOUR YEARS.

THE LAW AUTHORIZES EXTENSION OF A TERM OF ENLISTMENT BY AGREEMENT TO SERVE, ONE, TWO, THREE, OR FOUR YEARS LONGER THAN THE MAN CONTRACTED TO SERVE WHEN ENLISTED, BUT IT DOES NOT CONTEMPLATE THE EXTENSION OF AN EXTENSION. EXTENSIONS SUBSEQUENT TO A FIRST EXTENSION (TERMED "REEXTENSION" IN THE PROPOSED INSTRUCTIONS) HAVE THE EFFECT OF CHANGING THE TERM OF THE ORIGINAL EXTENSION TO A PERIOD EQUAL TO THE AGGREGATE OF ALL THE EXTENSIONS, AND A MAN WHO EXTENDS HIS ENLISTMENT FOR ONE YEAR AND DURING THE PERIOD OF THAT EXTENSION AGAIN EXTENDS IT FOR TWO YEARS IS, ON THE DATE OF THE LATTER AGREEMENT, IN EXACTLY THE SAME STATUS AS IF HE HAD ORIGINALLY EXTENDED HIS ENLISTMENT FOR THREE YEARS. THERE BEING NO ONE- YEAR ENLISTMENTS, NO RIGHTS CAN ACCRUE BY REASON OF AN EXTENSION FOR ONE YEAR, BUT WHEN THE EXTENSION IS FOR A PERIOD WHICH IS THE EQUIVALENT OF AN AUTHORIZED ENLISTMENT PERIOD--- THAT IS, TWO, THREE, OR FOUR YEARS--- THEN THE EXTENSION CARRIES WITH IT THE SAME RIGHT TO PAY AND ALLOWANCES THAT WOULD HAVE ACCRUED IF, WHEN THE ORIGINAL ENLISTMENT WAS DUE TO EXPIRE, INSTEAD OF EXTENDING THE ENLISTMENT THE MAN HAD BEEN DISCHARGED AND REENLISTED FOR A LIKE PERIOD. WHERE THE ENLISTED MAN IS DISCHARGED AFTER A ONE-YEAR EXTENSION AND REENLISTS WITHIN THREE MONTHS, THERE HAVING BEEN NO PAYMENT OF REENLISTMENT ALLOWANCE WHEN THE ONE-YEAR EXTENSION BECAME EFFECTIVE, HE IS ENTITLED TO REENLISTMENT ALLOWANCE BASED ON THE COMPLETE YEARS OF SERVICE IN HIS LAST ENLISTMENT (INCLUDING THE EXTENSION) IN ACCORD WITH THE PLAIN TERMS OF THE STATUTE, AND THE RATE IS BASED ON THE GRADE HELD WHEN DISCHARGED. 2 COMP. GEN. 167. BUT THIS FACT IS NO BASIS FOR INCREASING HIS REENLISTMENT ALLOWANCE CONTRARY TO THE PLAIN TERMS OF THE STATUTE WHERE AN ENLISTMENT HAS BEEN EXTENDED BY TWO OR MORE AGREEMENTS, THE FIRST BEING FOR ONE YEAR ONLY.

IN THE "EXAMPLE" STATED IN THE PROPOSED INSTRUCTIONS, THE EXTENSIONS, FIRST FOR ONE YEAR, AND SUBSEQUENTLY FOR TWO YEARS, AGGREGATE THREE YEARS (THE EQUIVALENT OF AN ENLISTMENT PERIOD) AND THE RIGHTS ACCRUING THEREBY ARE SUCH AS WOULD HAVE ACCRUED IF AT EXPIRATION OF THE ORIGINAL ENLISTMENT THE MAN HAD BEEN DISCHARGED AND REENLISTED FOR A TERM EQUAL TO THE AGGREGATE EXTENSION--- THREE YEARS. IN SUCH CASE THE MEASURE OF THE ENLISTMENT ALLOWANCE IS DETERMINED BY THE GRADE THE MAN HELD AT EXPIRATION OF THE ORIGINAL TERM OF ENLISTMENT AND THE DURATION OF SUCH ORIGINAL TERM OF ENLISTMENT. UNDER THE LAW, THE MEASURE OF ENLISTMENT ALLOWANCE ACCRUING IN ANY CASE BY REASON OF EXTENSION OF ENLISTMENT, WHETHER EXTENDED BY ONE OR MORE AGREEMENTS, IS BASED ON THE RATING HELD WHEN THE TERM FOR WHICH THE MAN ENLISTED EXPIRED AS AFFECTED BY THE DURATION OF THAT TERM. SEE DECISION 1 COMP. GEN. 489; 2 ID. 258.

ACCORDINGLY, YOU ARE ADVISED THAT THE PROPOSED REVISION OF SECTION B OF THE PAY BILL INSTRUCTIONS SO FAR AS IT STATES THAT "IF A ONE YEAR EXTENSION IS REEXTENDED SO THAT THE EXTENSION AGGREGATED TWO OR MORE YEARS, A MAN WOULD BE ENTITLED TO AN ENLISTMENT ALLOWANCE DEPENDENT UPON THE TIME SERVED IN THE PERIOD OF ENLISTMENT PLUS THE TIME SERVED IN THE PERIOD OF EXTENSION," AND THE FURTHER STATEMENT THAT "THE GRADE HELD AT THE END OF THE ONE-YEAR EXTENSION DETERMINES WHETHER THE ENLISTMENT ALLOWANCE WILL BE A MULTIPLE OF $50 OR $25," ARE NOT IN CONFORMITY WITH THE LAW.