A-22524, APRIL 30, 1928, 7 COMP. GEN. 686

A-22524: Apr 30, 1928

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THE PAYMENT IS PROPOSED TO BE MADE UNDER THE ANNUAL APPROPRIATION FOR PAYMENT OF FEDERAL INDEMNITY FOR 1928. WHICH HAVE ALSO BEEN INCLUDED IN REGULATIONS PROMULGATED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE: * * * PROVIDED FURTHER. THERE WERE CONDEMNED AND SLAUGHTERED A TOTAL OF 45 CATTLE ALLEGED TO BELONG TO THE CLAIMANT. THE GOVERNMENT APPRAISAL FOR EACH OF THE ANIMALS IS SHOWN TO HAVE BEEN $77.50. THE SALVAGE PAID IS IN EXCESS OF THE APPRAISED VALUE AND CONSEQUENTLY NO FEDERAL INDEMNITY IS PAYABLE IN SUCH CASES UNDER THE FIRST OF THE TWO STATUTORY RESTRICTIONS ABOVE QUOTED. COMPUTED BY ADDING THE INDIVIDUAL AMOUNTS OF GOVERNMENT INDEMNITY ON THE 28 ANIMALS FOR WHICH FEDERAL INDEMNITY IS PAYABLE.

A-22524, APRIL 30, 1928, 7 COMP. GEN. 686

LIVESTOCK, SLAUGHTERED - FEDERAL INDEMNITY THE STATUTORY RESTRICTION OR LIMITATION ON THE PAYMENT OF FEDERAL INDEMNITY FOR CATTLE SLAUGHTERED IN THE CONTROL AND ERADICATION OF TUBERCULOSIS, APPEARING IN THE ACT OF JANUARY 18, 1927, 44 STAT. 983, FOR THE FISCAL YEAR 1928, TO THE EFFECT THAT THE AMOUNT PAYABLE BY THE GOVERNMENT SHALL NOT EXCEED THE AMOUNT PAID OR TO BE PAID BY THE STATE, COUNTY, OR MUNICIPALITY WHERE THE ANIMAL SHALL BE CONDEMNED, MAY NOT BE APPLIED TO A NUMBER OF ANIMALS COLLECTIVELY BELONGING TO THE SAME PERSON, BUT MUST BE APPLIED TO EACH ANIMAL INDIVIDUALLY.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL MCCARL TO THE SECRETARY OF AGRICULTURE, APRIL 30, 1928:

THERE HAS BEEN PRESENTED TO THIS OFFICE FOR PREAUDIT BUREAU OF ANIMAL INDUSTRY VOUCHER NO. 68535, IN THE AMOUNT OF $334.83, IN FAVOR OF R. N. MOLYNEUX, FOR FEDERAL INDEMNITY ON 28 SLAUGHTERED CATTLE UNDER THE COOPERATIVE AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE UNITED STATES AND THE STATE GOVERNING THE CONTROL AND ERADICATION OF TUBERCULOSIS IN ANIMALS.

THE PAYMENT IS PROPOSED TO BE MADE UNDER THE ANNUAL APPROPRIATION FOR PAYMENT OF FEDERAL INDEMNITY FOR 1928, ACT OF JANUARY 18, 1927, 44 STAT. 983, CONTAINING THE FOLLOWING RESTRICTIONS, WHICH HAVE ALSO BEEN INCLUDED IN REGULATIONS PROMULGATED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE:

* * * PROVIDED FURTHER, THAT OUT OF THE MONEY HEREBY APPROPRIATED NO PAYMENT AS COMPENSATION FOR ANY ANIMAL CONDEMNED FOR SLAUGHTER SHALL EXCEED ONE-THIRD OF THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE APPRAISED VALUE OF SUCH ANIMAL AND THE VALUE OF THE SALVAGE THEREOF; THAT NO PAYMENT HEREUNDER SHALL EXCEED THE AMOUNT PAID OR TO BE PAID BY THE STATE, TERRITORY, COUNTY, AND MUNICIPALITY WHERE THE ANIMAL SHALL BE CONDEMNED; * * *.

THERE WERE CONDEMNED AND SLAUGHTERED A TOTAL OF 45 CATTLE ALLEGED TO BELONG TO THE CLAIMANT, FOR WHICH THE COUNTY OF CLARK, KANS., PAID OR PROPOSES TO PAY AN INDEMNITY TOTALING $334.83, OR AN AVERAGE OF $7.44 PER ANIMAL. IT APPEARS THAT THE COUNTY COMPUTES ITS INDEMNITY IN A LUMP SUM FOR THE TOTAL NUMBER OF CATTLE SLAUGHTERED BELONGING TO THE SAME INDIVIDUAL AND NOT ON THE BASIS OF THE INDIVIDUAL ANIMAL AND WITHOUT REGARD TO THE AMOUNT OF SALVAGE PAID ON THE INDIVIDUAL ANIMALS. THE GOVERNMENT APPRAISAL FOR EACH OF THE ANIMALS IS SHOWN TO HAVE BEEN $77.50. THE AMOUNT OF SALVAGE VARIES, AND, AS TO 17 ANIMALS, THE SALVAGE PAID IS IN EXCESS OF THE APPRAISED VALUE AND CONSEQUENTLY NO FEDERAL INDEMNITY IS PAYABLE IN SUCH CASES UNDER THE FIRST OF THE TWO STATUTORY RESTRICTIONS ABOVE QUOTED. THE COUNTY, HOWEVER, APPARENTLY PAYS INDEMNITY ON THESE 17 CATTLE AS WELL AS THE OTHERS. THE VOUCHER PREPARED AND CERTIFIED TO THIS OFFICE PROPOSES TO PAY THE SAME AMOUNT PAID OR TO BE PAID BY THE COUNTY, COMPUTED BY ADDING THE INDIVIDUAL AMOUNTS OF GOVERNMENT INDEMNITY ON THE 28 ANIMALS FOR WHICH FEDERAL INDEMNITY IS PAYABLE, NOT IN EXCESS OF ONE THIRD OF THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE APPRAISED VALUE OF EACH OF SUCH ANIMALS AND THE VALUE OF THE SALVAGE THEREOF, OR $386.79, AND REDUCING SUCH AMOUNT TO THAT PAID, OR PROPOSED TO BE PAID, BY THE COUNTY AS INDEMNITY ON ALL 45 ANIMALS COLLECTIVELY, WITHOUT REGARD TO THE SECOND OF THE STATUTORY RESTRICTIONS ABOVE QUOTED AS TO 10 OF THE 28 ANIMALS FOR WHICH A GOVERNMENT INDEMNITY IS PAYABLE; THAT IS, AS TO EACH OF 10 OF THE ANIMALS, THE PROPOSED FEDERAL INDEMNITY WOULD EXCEED THE SUM OF $7.44, THE PROPORTION OF THE COUNTY'S TOTAL INDEMNITY WHICH MAY PROPERLY BE ALLOTTED TO EACH ANIMAL.

SUCH A BASIS OF COMPUTATION IS NOT CORRECT. IF A STATE, COUNTY, OR MUNICIPALITY PREFERS TO BASE ITS INDEMNITY ON A NUMBER OF ANIMALS COLLECTIVELY, THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT SHOULD NOT OBJECT. BUT EACH OF THE TWO STATUTORY RESTRICTIONS ABOVE QUOTED MUST, NEVERTHELESS, BE APPLIED TO EACH ANIMAL INDIVIDUALLY NOT TO A NUMBER COLLECTIVELY. APPLYING THE STATUTORY RESTRICTIONS TO THE 28 ANIMALS INDIVIDUALLY FOR WHICH A GOVERNMENT INDEMNITY IS PAYABLE, THERE MAY BE LAWFULLY PAID ON THIS VOUCHER NO MORE THAN A TOTAL OF $176.63.

YOUR ATTENTION IS INVITED, ALSO, TO THE FOLLOWING EXCERPT FROM DECISION OF THIS OFFICE DATED FEBRUARY 12, 1925, 4 COMP. GEN. 685, 687, RELATIVE TO THE STATUTORY RESTRICTIONS APPLICABLE TO SUCH PAYMENTS:

IN VIEW OF THESE RESTRICTIONS YOU ARE NOT AUTHORIZED TO MAKE PAYMENT UNDER THE PROVISIONS IN QUESTION UNLESS THE PERSON CLAIMING TO BE THE OWNER OF THE DESTROYED ANIMALS ESTABLISHES TO YOUR SATISFACTION (1) THAT HE HAS COMPLIED WITH ALL LAWFUL QUARANTINE REGULATIONS; (2) THAT THE ANIMAL HAD NOT AT THE TIME OF INSPECTION, TEST, OR CONDEMNATION BEEN SOLD, SHIPPED, OR DELIVERED FOR THE PURPOSE OF BEING SLAUGHTERED; AND (3) THAT THE STATE, TERRITORY, COUNTY, OR MUNICIPALITY IN WHICH THE ANIMAL WAS DESTROYED HAS MADE OR WILL MAKE PAYMENT TO HIM ON ACCOUNT OF THE DESTRUCTION IN ACCORDANCE WITH PROVISION MADE THEREFOR BY LAW OR UNDER LEGAL AUTHORITY. * * *

THERE ARE NO FACTS DISCLOSED IN THE PRESENT INSTANCE SHOWING THAT REQUIREMENTS (1) AND (2) HAVE BEEN MET. WITH RESPECT TO THE THIRD REQUIREMENT, WHILE THERE IS A SHOWING AS TO THE AMOUNT WHICH THE COUNTY HAS PAID OR PROPOSED TO PAY FOR THE TOTAL NUMBER OF CATTLE SLAUGHTERED, VIZ, $334.83, THERE IS NO DEFINITE SHOWING THAT SAID CATTLE WERE DESTROYED IN ACCORDANCE WITH PROVISION MADE THEREFOR BY LAW OR UNDER LEGAL AUTHORITY. THE VOUCHER SUBMITTED TO THIS OFFICE EITHER FOR DIRECT SETTLEMENT, FOR PREAUDIT, OR IN THE ACCOUNTS OF A DISBURSING OFFICER WHO HAS MADE PAYMENT OF FEDERAL INDEMNITY FOR SLAUGHTERED CATTLE, SHOULD INCLUDE A CERTIFICATE BY THE RESPONSIBLE ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICER SHOWING COMPLIANCE WITH EACH OF THE THREE REQUIREMENTS. AMENDMENTS TO THE VOUCHER FORMS ARE NOW UNDER CONSIDERATION BY THIS OFFICE WITH THIS END IN VIEW.