A-4081, AUGUST 15, 1924, 4 COMP. GEN. 181

A-4081: Aug 15, 1924

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IS ONLY ENTITLED TO PAY FROM THE DATE HE SUBSCRIBED TO THE OATH. REQUESTING DECISION WHETHER PAYMENT IS AUTHORIZED OF A DULY CERTIFIED AND APPROVED VOUCHER FOR PAY OF R. IT IS STATED THAT DEXTER WAS ACCEPTED FOR ENLISTMENT IN THE UNITED STATES COAST GUARD ON JUNE 11. OR ACTING WARRANT OFFICER IN RESPONSIBLE CHARGE OF A UNIT IS AUTHORIZED TO ADMINISTER THIS OATH. * * * THE ACT OF JANUARY 28. THE QUESTION IS ACCORDINGLY PRESENTED AS TO WHEN DEXTER'S STATUS CHANGED FROM THAT OF A CIVILIAN TO THAT OF A MEMBER OF THE MILITARY FORCE. IT WAS HELD. THAT "THE TAKING OF THE OATH OF ALLEGIANCE IS THE PIVOTAL FACT WHICH CHANGES THE STATUS FROM THAT OF CIVILIAN TO THAT OF SOLDIER. DEC. 367 IT WAS HELD THAT THE DATE FROM WHICH AN ENLISTED MAN IS ENTITLED TO PAY IS THE DATE OF THE FINAL ACT WHICH COMPLETES THE ENLISTMENT CONTRACT AND CHANGES HIS STATUS FROM THAT OF A CIVILIAN TO THAT OF A SOLDIER.

A-4081, AUGUST 15, 1924, 4 COMP. GEN. 181

COAST GUARD PAY - EFFECTIVE DATE AN ENLISTED MAN OF THE COAST GUARD, WHO PASSED THE REQUIRED PHYSICAL EXAMINATION AND SIGNED THE ENLISTMENT CONTRACT AT THE NAVAL RECRUITING STATION AT KANSAS CITY, MO., ON JUNE 11, 1924, BUT WHO DID NOT SUBSCRIBE TO THE OATH OF ALLEGIANCE UNTIL AFTER HIS ARRIVAL AT HAMPTON ROADS, VA., ON JUNE 14, 1924, IS ONLY ENTITLED TO PAY FROM THE DATE HE SUBSCRIBED TO THE OATH.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL MCCARL TO W. H. WEBB, PAY AND ALLOTMENT OFFICER, UNITED STATES COAST GUARD, AUGUST 15, 1924:

THERE HAS BEEN RECEIVED YOUR LETTER DATED JULY 11, 1924, REQUESTING DECISION WHETHER PAYMENT IS AUTHORIZED OF A DULY CERTIFIED AND APPROVED VOUCHER FOR PAY OF R. E. DEXTER, FIREMAN, SECOND CLASS, UNITED STATES COAST GUARD, FOR THE PERIOD JUNE 11 TO 13, 1924, INCLUSIVE.

IT IS STATED THAT DEXTER WAS ACCEPTED FOR ENLISTMENT IN THE UNITED STATES COAST GUARD ON JUNE 11, 1924, AND SIGNED ENLISTMENT CONTRACT AND RECORD ON THAT DATE AT THE NAVAL RECRUITING STATION, KANSAS CITY, MO., BUT THAT HE DID NOT SUBSCRIBE AND SWEAR TO THE OATH OF ALLEGIANCE UNTIL JUNE 14, 1924, AT HAMPTON ROADS, VA.

ARTICLES 319 AND 320, REGULATIONS FOR THE UNITED STATES COAST GUARD, 1916, PROVIDE:

319. THE ENLISTMENT CONTRACT SHALL BE READ ALOUD TO THE APPLICANT, AND THE MAIN FACTS PERTAINING TO PAY, UNIFORM OUTFIT, CLOTHING, AND OTHER ALLOWANCES, DISCHARGES, AND THE REQUIREMENTS OF WAR AND SERVICE WITH THE NAVY, SHALL BE EXPLAINED TO HIM BY THE ENLISTING OFFICER PRIOR TO HIS SIGNING THE AGREEMENT AND CONTRACT.

320. THE FULL NAME OF EACH PERSON ENLISTED SHALL BE WRITTEN IN THE ENLISTMENT CONTRACT AND RECORD AND ENTERED IN THE LOG OF THE SHIP OR STATION. EACH PERSON SHALL, UPON ORIGINALLY ENLISTING, SIGN HIS OWN NAME IN THE PLACES PROVIDED THEREFOR ON THE ENLISTMENT CONTRACT AND RECORD AND SHALL TAKE AND SUBSCRIBE THE OATH OF ALLEGIANCE. A COMMISSIONED, WARRANT, OR ACTING WARRANT OFFICER IN RESPONSIBLE CHARGE OF A UNIT IS AUTHORIZED TO ADMINISTER THIS OATH. * * *

THE ACT OF JANUARY 28, 1915, 38 STAT. 800, ESTABLISHING THE UNITED STATE COAST GUARD, PROVIDES THAT THE COAST GUARD "SHALL CONSTITUTE A PART OF THE MILITARY FORCES OF THE UNITED STATES.' THE QUESTION IS ACCORDINGLY PRESENTED AS TO WHEN DEXTER'S STATUS CHANGED FROM THAT OF A CIVILIAN TO THAT OF A MEMBER OF THE MILITARY FORCE.

IT WAS HELD, IN RE GRIMLEY, 137 U.S. 147-156, THAT "THE TAKING OF THE OATH OF ALLEGIANCE IS THE PIVOTAL FACT WHICH CHANGES THE STATUS FROM THAT OF CIVILIAN TO THAT OF SOLDIER," AND IN 19 COMP. DEC. 367 IT WAS HELD THAT THE DATE FROM WHICH AN ENLISTED MAN IS ENTITLED TO PAY IS THE DATE OF THE FINAL ACT WHICH COMPLETES THE ENLISTMENT CONTRACT AND CHANGES HIS STATUS FROM THAT OF A CIVILIAN TO THAT OF A SOLDIER, WHICH ACT IS ALMOST INVARIABLY THE TAKING OF THE OATH OF ALLEGIANCE.

IN UNITED STATES V. UNION PACIFIC R.R.CO., 249 U.S. 354-359, THE COURT HELD THAT APPLICANTS FOR ENLISTMENT ARE NOT "TROOPS OF THE UNITED STATES.'

UPON THE PASSAGE OF THE ACT OF APRIL 21, 1924, 43 STAT. 105, AUTHORIZING TEMPORARY INCREASES IN THE COAST GUARD IN OFFICER AND ENLISTED STRENGTH, THE SECRETARY OF THE NAVY TENDERED THE SERVICES OF THE NAVAL RECRUITING SERVICE TO THE COAST GUARD TO ASSIST THE LATTER SERVICE IN SECURING ENLISTMENTS. IT IS LEARNED BY THIS OFFICE THAT UNDER THIS ARRANGEMENT AN APPLICANT FOR ENLISTMENT WOULD BE GIVEN A PHYSICAL EXAMINATION AT THE NAVAL RECRUITING STATION AND THAT THE ENLISTMENT CONTRACT WOULD BE EXECUTED, THE NAVY RECRUITING OFFICER ACTING AS THE PART REPRESENTING THE UNITED STATES, BUT THAT THE NAVY DEPARTMENT RULED THAT AN OFFICER OF THE NAVY, IN THE ABSENCE OF SPECIFIC AUTHORITY OF LAW, COULD NOT ADMINISTER THE OATH OF ALLEGIANCE FOR THE COAST GUARD.

IN ORDER TO BECOME A FULLY ENLISTED MAN, THE PARTY MUST FIRST SIGN THE PRESCRIBED APPLICATION, AND HE MUST THEN BE ACCEPTED AND SWORN INTO THE SERVICE BY THE PROPER OFFICER. SEE UNION PACIFIC R.R., 52 CT.CLS. 226- 233.

AS DEXTER DID NOT TAKE THE OATH OF ALLEGIANCE UNTIL JUNE 14, 1924, PAYMENT OF THE VOUCHER FOR PAY AS A FIREMAN, SECOND CLASS, IN THE COAST GUARD FOR THE PERIOD JUNE 11 TO 13, 1924, INCLUSIVE, IS NOT AUTHORIZED. THE VOUCHER IS RETURNED HEREWITH.