A-44022, A-51623, A-58462, A-68122, JUNE 7, 1938, 17 COMP. GEN. 1054

A-44022,A-51623,A-68122,A-58462: Jun 7, 1938

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THERE IS NO LEGAL AUTHORITY FOR TRANSFERRING DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE FARM CREDIT ADMINISTRATION IN CONNECTION WITH COLLECTING MONEYS DUE THE UNITED STATES ON ACCOUNT OF LOANS MADE BY SAID ADMINISTRATION. EXPENSES INCIDENT TO THE WITHHOLDING BY SAID DEPARTMENT OF ANY PAYMENTS OTHERWISE DUE FROM IT WHICH PROPERLY ARE FOR APPLYING AGAINST INDEBTEDNESSES TO THE UNITED STATES OF THE PERSONS TO WHOM SUCH PAYMENTS OTHERWISE ARE DUE ARE TO BE BORNE BY THE APPROPRIATIONS OF THE DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE. 1938: I HAVE YOUR LETTER OF APRIL 27. AS FOLLOWS: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER TO THIS OFFICE DATED MARCH 30. AFTER REFERRING TO CERTAIN CLASSIFICATIONS OF CASES IN WHICH THE SECRETARY OF AGRICULTURE HAD ADVISED YOU THAT HE WOULD APPROVE SET-OFFS BEING MADE FOR THE PURPOSE OF EFFECTING THE COLLECTIONS OF DEBTS OWED THE UNITED STATES BY PERSONS TO WHOM RENTAL AND BENEFIT OR SOIL CONSERVATION PAYMENTS ARE DUE.

A-44022, A-51623, A-58462, A-68122, JUNE 7, 1938, 17 COMP. GEN. 1054

APPROPRIATIONS - TRANSFERS - BETWEEN DEPARTMENTS AND ESTABLISHMENTS - ADMINISTRATIVE EXPENSES OF DEPARTMENT PERFORMING DUTIES INCIDENT TO ITS WORK WHILE SECTION 7 OF THE ACT OF MAY 21, 1920, 41 STAT. 613, AS AMENDED BY SECTION 601 OF THE ACT OF JUNE 30, 1932, 47 STAT. 417, AUTHORIZES RENDERING OF SERVICE BETWEEN DEPARTMENTS WITH PAYMENT THEREFOR BY AGENCY REQUISITIONING THE SERVICE, THERE IS NO LEGAL AUTHORITY FOR TRANSFERRING DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE FARM CREDIT ADMINISTRATION IN CONNECTION WITH COLLECTING MONEYS DUE THE UNITED STATES ON ACCOUNT OF LOANS MADE BY SAID ADMINISTRATION, OR ANY MONEYS APPROPRIATED TO IT FOR SUCH PURPOSE, TO THE DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE, AND EXPENSES INCIDENT TO THE WITHHOLDING BY SAID DEPARTMENT OF ANY PAYMENTS OTHERWISE DUE FROM IT WHICH PROPERLY ARE FOR APPLYING AGAINST INDEBTEDNESSES TO THE UNITED STATES OF THE PERSONS TO WHOM SUCH PAYMENTS OTHERWISE ARE DUE ARE TO BE BORNE BY THE APPROPRIATIONS OF THE DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE.

ACTING COMPTROLLER GENERAL ELLIOTT TO THE GOVERNOR, FARM CREDIT ADMINISTRATION, JUNE 7, 1938:

I HAVE YOUR LETTER OF APRIL 27, 1938, AS FOLLOWS:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER TO THIS OFFICE DATED MARCH 30, 1937 (A- 51623, A-44022, A-58462, A-68122), IN WHICH, AFTER REFERRING TO CERTAIN CLASSIFICATIONS OF CASES IN WHICH THE SECRETARY OF AGRICULTURE HAD ADVISED YOU THAT HE WOULD APPROVE SET-OFFS BEING MADE FOR THE PURPOSE OF EFFECTING THE COLLECTIONS OF DEBTS OWED THE UNITED STATES BY PERSONS TO WHOM RENTAL AND BENEFIT OR SOIL CONSERVATION PAYMENTS ARE DUE, YOU DIRECTED THAT THEREAFTER CASES FALLING WITHIN THE ESTABLISHED CLASSIFICATIONS BE REFERRED TO THE SECRETARY OF AGRICULTURE RATHER THAN TO THE GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE.

THE SECRETARY OF AGRICULTURE ISSUED AN ORDER DATED MAY 8, 1937, SETTING FORTH THE CLASSIFICATIONS DISCUSSED IN YOUR LETTER TO THIS OFFICE OF MARCH 30, 1937, AND PRESCRIBING A PROCEDURE TO BE FOLLOWED TO OBTAIN HIS APPROVAL OF CONTEMPLATED SET-OFFS AND IN EFFECTING THEM BY FINAL ACTION OF THE GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE. THAT ORDER WAS REVISED BY ORDER OF MARCH 5, 1938, RESTRICTING THE CLASSIFICATIONS OF CASES IN WHICH SET-OFFS WERE TO BE APPROVED BY THE SECRETARY OF AGRICULTURE TO TWO, ONE OF WHICH IS SUBSTANTIALLY THE SAME AS CLASSIFICATION (A) OF THE ORDER OF MAY 8, 1937, AND THE OTHER IS A NEW CLASSIFICATION PROVIDING FOR SET-OFF TO BE MADE UPON THE WRITTEN REQUEST OR CONSENT OF THE DEBTOR.

THERE ARE ENCLOSED FOR YOUR INFORMATION COPIES OF MY LETTER OF MARCH 22, TO THE SECRETARY OF AGRICULTURE, HIS REPLY DATED APRIL 15, 1938, AND MY ACKNOWLEDGMENT DATED APRIL 25, 1938.

YOUR ATTENTION IS DIRECTED TO THE THIRD PARAGRAPH OF THE SECRETARY'S LETTER OF APRIL 15, IN WHICH HE STATES THAT THERE IS NOW UNDER CONSIDERATION A PROCEDURE WHICH WOULD PROVIDE THAT, BEGINNING WITH THE FISCAL YEAR 1939, SET-OFFS NOT BE ALLOWED IN ANY CASES EXCEPT THOSE COMING WITHIN CLASSIFICATION (B) OF THE REVISED ORDER UNLESS THE CREDITOR GOVERNMENTAL AGENCY WILL REIMBURSE THE AGRICULTURAL ADJUSTMENT ADMINISTRATION FOR THE EXPENSE INCURRED IN MAKING SUCH SET OFF. THEREFORE, IN ORDER THAT THE FARM CREDIT ADMINISTRATION MAY BE IN A POSITION TO DETERMINE WHETHER IT MAY MAKE SUCH A TRANSFER OF ITS APPROPRIATIONS TO THE APPROPRIATIONS OF THE AGRICULTURAL ADJUSTMENT ADMINISTRATION SHOULD THERE BE A FURTHER MODIFICATION OF THE ORDER OF MARCH 5, 1938, AS INDICATED IN THE SECRETARY'S LETTER OF APRIL 15, AND SHOULD OTHER FACTORS TO BE CONSIDERED BY THIS OFFICE MAKE A TRANSFER OF APPROPRIATIONS ADVISABLE, I SHALL APPRECIATE A RULING FROM YOU AT YOUR EARLIEST CONVENIENCE COVERING THIS POINT.

WHILE SECTION 7 OF THE ACT OF MAY 21, 1920, 41 STAT. 613, AS AMENDED BY SECTION 601 OF THE ACT OF JUNE 30, 1032, 47 STAT. 417, AUTHORIZES ANY EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENT OR INDEPENDENT ESTABLISHMENT OF THE GOVERNMENT, SUBJECT TO CERTAIN CONDITIONS MENTIONED THEREIN, TO PLACE ORDERS WITH ANOTHER DEPARTMENT OR ESTABLISHMENT FOR WORK, OR SERVICES, OF ANY KIND THAT THE REQUISITIONED AGENCY MAY BE IN A POSITION TO RENDER, AND TO PAY FOR SUCH WORK, OR SERVICES EITHER IN ADVANCE OR UPON THE PERFORMANCE THEREOF, THIS DOES NOT AUTHORIZE THE TRANSFER OF APPROPRIATED FUNDS FROM ONE DEPARTMENT OR AGENCY OF THE GOVERNMENT TO ANOTHER FOR USE IN PAYING ADMINISTRATIVE EXPENSES OF SUCH DEPARTMENT OR AGENCY INCIDENT TO THE PERFORMANCE OF DUTIES PROPERLY PERTAINING TO IT OR WHICH LEGALLY MAY BE REQUIRED OF IT. NEITHER DO SAID PROVISIONS OF LAW AUTHORIZE A DEPARTMENT OR AGENCY TO TRANSFER ADMINISTRATIVE FUNCTIONS IMPOSED UPON IT BY LAW TO ANOTHER DEPARTMENT OR AGENCY.

THE STATUTES UNDER WHICH THE VARIOUS ACTIVITIES OF THE FARM CREDIT ADMINISTRATION ARE AUTHORIZED PROVIDE FOR OR APPEAR TO CONTEMPLATE THE DIRECT COLLECTION BY IT OF MONEYS DUE THE UNITED STATES ON ACCOUNT OF LOANS MADE BY SAID ADMINISTRATION AND THERE IS NO LEGAL AUTHORITY FOR TRANSFERRING ITS DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES INCIDENT THERETO, OR ANY MONEYS APPROPRIATED TO IT FOR SUCH PURPOSE, TO THE DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE. FURTHERMORE, ANY EXPENSES INCIDENT TO THE WITHHOLDING BY THE DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE OF ANY PAYMENTS OTHERWISE DUE FROM IT WHICH PROPERLY ARE FOR APPLYING AGAINST INDEBTEDNESSES TO THE UNITED STATES OF THE PERSONS TO WHOM SUCH PAYMENTS OTHERWISE ARE DUE ARE TO BE BORNE BY THE APPROPRIATIONS MADE TO THE DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE.