A-57568, APRIL 8, 1935, 14 COMP. GEN. 739

A-57568: Apr 8, 1935

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WHO IS ASSIGNED PUBLIC QUARTERS AT A CIVILIAN CONSERVATION CORPS CAMP. IS NOT ENTITLED TO RENTAL ALLOWANCE NOTWITHSTANDING THERE HAS BEEN AN ADMINISTRATIVE FINDING THAT THE QUARTERS ARE INADEQUATE. THE REASON FOR THE DISALLOWANCE IS THAT FOR THE PERIOD IN QUESTION THESE OFFICERS OCCUPIED GOVERNMENT QUARTERS. TOGETHER WITH THE FACT THAT THE RADIOGRAM MENTIONED BY THE GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE IN THE ATTACHED TWO NOTICES OF EXCEPTION WAS ISSUED PRIOR TO THE RENDITION OF THE OPINION OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL AND THE ISSUANCE OF PARAGRAPH 30 1/2 CITED ABOVE. IT IS THE CONTENTION OF THE UNDERSIGNED THAT THE RADIOGRAM. RECONSIDERATION IS. THESE OFFICERS WERE ASSIGNED TO THE WAR DEPARTMENT FOR DUTY WITH THE CIVILIAN CONSERVATION CORPS.

A-57568, APRIL 8, 1935, 14 COMP. GEN. 739

QUARTERS - INADEQUATE - RENTAL ALLOWANCE AN OFFICER OF THE NAVY WITHOUT DEPENDENTS ON DUTY WITH THE CIVILIAN CONSERVATION CORPS, WHO IS ASSIGNED PUBLIC QUARTERS AT A CIVILIAN CONSERVATION CORPS CAMP, IS NOT ENTITLED TO RENTAL ALLOWANCE NOTWITHSTANDING THERE HAS BEEN AN ADMINISTRATIVE FINDING THAT THE QUARTERS ARE INADEQUATE.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL MCCARL TO MAJOR L. M. EDWARDS, UNITED STATES ARMY, APRIL 8, 1935:

THERE HAS BEEN RECEIVED YOUR REQUEST, AS CUSTODIAN OF THE RECORDS OF CAPT. R. B. CONNER, UNITED STATES ARMY, FOR REVIEW OF DISALLOWANCES IN HIS DISBURSING ACCOUNT OF CREDIT FOR PAYMENT OF RENTAL ALLOWANCES TO LT. (JR.GR.) OSCAR SCHNEIDER (M.C.), UNITED STATES NAVY, IN THE AMOUNT OF $284.47, COVERING THE PERIOD MAY 20, 1933, TO JUNE 30, 1934, AND CREDIT FOR PAYMENT OF RENTAL ALLOWANCE TO LT. (JR.GR.) JAMES R. REID (M.C.), UNITED STATES NAVY, IN THE AMOUNT OF $151.86, COVERING THE PERIOD MAY 24 TO OCTOBER 7, 1933. THE REASON FOR THE DISALLOWANCE IS THAT FOR THE PERIOD IN QUESTION THESE OFFICERS OCCUPIED GOVERNMENT QUARTERS. YOU STATE REASONS FOR REQUESTING THE REVIEW, AS FOLLOWS:

2. IN VIEW OF THE OPINION OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL PUBLISHED IN SECTION II, CIRCULAR NO. 15, WAR DEPARTMENT, APRIL 13, 1934, AND THE PROVISIONS OF PARAGRAPH 30 1/2 (NOW PARAGRAPH 31), WAR DEPARTMENT CIVILIAN CONSERVATION CORPS REGULATIONS, TOGETHER WITH THE FACT THAT THE RADIOGRAM MENTIONED BY THE GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE IN THE ATTACHED TWO NOTICES OF EXCEPTION WAS ISSUED PRIOR TO THE RENDITION OF THE OPINION OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL AND THE ISSUANCE OF PARAGRAPH 30 1/2 CITED ABOVE, IT IS THE CONTENTION OF THE UNDERSIGNED THAT THE RADIOGRAM, CHIEF OF FINANCE OF AUGUST 1, 1934, HAS NO EFFECT ON PAYMENT OF RENTAL ALLOWANCE TO OFFICERS ON DUTY AT C.C.C. CAMPS AND, RECONSIDERATION IS, THEREFORE REQUESTED.

THESE OFFICERS WERE ASSIGNED TO THE WAR DEPARTMENT FOR DUTY WITH THE CIVILIAN CONSERVATION CORPS. THE EVIDENCE SHOWS IN BOTH CASES RENTAL ALLOWANCE WAS CURRENTLY PAID THEM FROM DATE OF ASSIGNMENT TO DUTY WITH THE WAR DEPARTMENT TO INCLUDE JULY 31, 1933, WHICH WAS REFUNDED BY REASON OF INSTRUCTIONS IN THE RADIOGRAM OF AUGUST 1, 1933, TO THE EFFECT THAT OFFICERS WITHOUT DEPENDENTS ON DUTY WITH THE CIVILIAN CONSERVATION CORPS AND LIVING IN CAMP QUARTERS WERE NOT ENTITLED TO RENTAL ALLOWANCES, SUCH QUARTERS BEING CONSIDERED ADEQUATE. UNDER DATE OF APRIL 12, 1934, THE WAR DEPARTMENT PUBLISHED INSTRUCTIONS IN PART AS FOLLOWS:

30 1/2. AVAILABILITY OF PUBLIC QUARTERS FOR ARMY PERSONNEL AT WORK CAMPS.--- A. UNDER THE AUTHORITY IN HIM VESTED BY THE ACT OF MARCH 4, 1915 (38 STAT. 1069), THE SECRETARY OF WAR HAS DETERMINED THAT SHELTER FURNISHED FOR PERSONAL USE TO COMMISSIONED AND WARRANT OFFICERS AT CIVILIAN CONSERVATION CORPS WORK CAMPS AND CONSISTING OF TENTS OR SPACE INTEMPORARY BUILDINGS OR SHACKS, DOES NOT CONSTITUTE ADEQUATE QUARTERS AS CONTEMPLATED BY LAW, AND IF SUCH SHELTER ONLY HAS BEEN OR IS AVAILABLE AND HAS BEEN OR IS BEING FURNISHED AT ANY WORK CAMP, THEN THERE ARE NOT AND AT NO TIME HAVE BEEN ANY PUBLIC QUARTERS AVAILABLE FOR SUCH COMMISSIONED AND WARRANT OFFICERS AT SAID WORK CAMP.

BY REASON OF THESE INSTRUCTIONS THE OFFICERS WERE AGAIN CREDITED AND PAID RENTAL ALLOWANCES FOR THE PERIOD STATED ABOVE.

PARAGRAPH 2, BL, (2) OF ARMY REGULATIONS 210-70, PROVIDES:

ANY QUARTERS AT HIS PERMANENT STATION VOLUNTARILY ACCEPTED AND OCCUPIED BY AN OFFICER WHO HAS NO DEPENDENTS OR BY AN OFFICER WITH HIS DEPENDENTS WILL BE CONCLUSIVELY PRESUMED TO BE ADEQUATE.

THE DETERMINATION OF THE WAR DEPARTMENT THAT COMMISSIONED AND WARRANT OFFICERS ON DUTY AT CIVILIAN CONSERVATION CORPS WORK CAMPS OCCUPYING TENTS OR SPACE IN TEMPORARY BUILDINGS OR SHACKS ARE NOT ASSIGNED PUBLIC QUARTERS WITHIN THE RENTAL ALLOWANCE LAW IS NOT ACCEPTED AS AFFECTING THE RULE STATED IN 8 COMP. GEN. 643, AND ANNOUNCED BY THE COURT OF CLAIMS IN THE CASE OF CARTER V. UNITED STATES, DECIDED MARCH 5, 1934, TO THE EFFECT THAT WHERE AN OFFICER WITHOUT DEPENDENTS OCCUPIES PUBLIC QUARTERS AT HIS PERMANENT STATION ON SHORE, SUCH QUARTERS MUST BE CONSIDERED ADEQUATE AND THE OFFICER IS NOT ENTITLED TO RENTAL ALLOWANCE. THE COURT STATED INCARTER V. UNITED STATES:

THE QUARTERS OCCUPIED BY PLAINTIFF WERE REGULARLY ASSIGNED TO HIM BY COMPETENT SUPERIOR AUTHORITY AND WERE OCCUPIED WITHOUT PROTEST UNTIL APRIL 30, 1931. ON THAT DATE HE PROTESTED THE INADEQUACY OF THE QUARTERS THEN BEING OCCUPIED BUT CONTINUED TO OCCUPY THEM. HE INCURRED NO ADDITIONAL EXPENSE FOR OTHER QUARTERS OUTSIDE OF THE GOVERNMENT RESERVATION UNTIL THE ASSIGNMENT OF SUCH QUARTERS WAS TERMINATED BY THE SECRETARY OF WAR ON FEBRUARY 20, 1932, IN THE MANNER PROVIDED BY THE STATUTE AND THE REGULATIONS. IN THESE CIRCUMSTANCES THE COURT IS OF THE OPINION THAT UNDER THE ACT OF JUNE 10, 1922, 42 STAT. 625, AS AMENDED BY SECTION 2, ACT OF MAY 31, 1924, 43 STAT. 250, 251, EXECUTIVE ORDER NO. 4063, PROMULGATED AUGUST 13, 1924 AND ARMY REGULATIONS 210-70, THE PLAINTIFF IS NOT ENTITLED TO RECOVER THE RENTAL ALLOWANCES CLAIMED FOR THE PERIOD MAY 1, 1931, TO JANUARY 31, 1932, INCLUSIVE, AND THAT THE DEFENDANT'S COUNTERCLAIM FOR $400, WITH INTEREST, FOR RENTAL ALLOWANCES PAID FOR THE PERIOD MAY 1, 1931, TO SEPTEMBER 30, 1931, MUST BE ALLOWED. ODELL V. UNITED STATES, 38 CT.CLS. 194, 197-198; IRWIN V. UNITED STATES, 38 CT.CLS. 87.

THE DISALLOWANCE OF THE ITEMS IN QUESTION IS IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE LAW AND REGULATIONS AS CONSTRUED BY THE COURTS AND THIS OFFICE (14 COMP. GEN. 258), AND THEREFORE MUST BE SUSTAINED.