A-58002, OCTOBER 17, 1934, 14 COMP. GEN. 322

A-58002: Oct 17, 1934

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STREET-CAR PASSES THE PURCHASE OF WEEKLY STREET-CAR PASSES IN SUCH NUMBER AS REASONABLY MAY BE REQUIRED FOR ECONOMICAL USE IN THE PERFORMANCE OF OFFICIAL BUSINESS IS AUTHORIZED UNDER APPROPRIATIONS AVAILABLE THEREFOR. 1934: I HAVE YOUR LETTER OF SEPTEMBER 26. IN EFFECT REQUESTING DECISION WHETHER THE APPROPRIATIONS FOR YOUR DEPARTMENT ARE AVAILABLE FOR THE PURCHASE OF STREET-CAR PASSES FOR USE BY THE EMPLOYEES OF THE DEPARTMENT WHEN REQUIRED TO USE STREET CARS ON OFFICIAL BUSINESS. INCLUDING THOSE FOR WHICH APPROPRIATIONS FOR CONTINGENT AND MISCELLANEOUS EXPENSES ARE SPECIFICALLY MADE. NOT EXCEEDING $600: * * * SIMILAR PROVISIONS ARE CONTAINED IN SAID ACT UNDER THE HEADINGS "BUREAU OF FOREIGN AND DOMESTIC COMMERCE.

A-58002, OCTOBER 17, 1934, 14 COMP. GEN. 322

STREET-CAR PASSES THE PURCHASE OF WEEKLY STREET-CAR PASSES IN SUCH NUMBER AS REASONABLY MAY BE REQUIRED FOR ECONOMICAL USE IN THE PERFORMANCE OF OFFICIAL BUSINESS IS AUTHORIZED UNDER APPROPRIATIONS AVAILABLE THEREFOR. PROPER SAFEGUARDS FOR THE ISSUANCE AND USE OF SUCH PASSES FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY SHOULD BE TAKEN BY THE ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICE.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL MCCARL TO THE SECRETARY OF COMMERCE, OCTOBER 17, 1934:

I HAVE YOUR LETTER OF SEPTEMBER 26, 1934, IN EFFECT REQUESTING DECISION WHETHER THE APPROPRIATIONS FOR YOUR DEPARTMENT ARE AVAILABLE FOR THE PURCHASE OF STREET-CAR PASSES FOR USE BY THE EMPLOYEES OF THE DEPARTMENT WHEN REQUIRED TO USE STREET CARS ON OFFICIAL BUSINESS.

THE DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE APPROPRIATION ACT, 1935, 48 STAT. 546, PROVIDES UNDER THE HEADING ,CONTINGENT EXPENSES," AS FOLLOWS:

FOR CONTINGENT AND MISCELLANEOUS EXPENSES OF THE OFFICES AND BUREAUS OF THE DEPARTMENT, EXCEPT THE PATENT OFFICE, INCLUDING THOSE FOR WHICH APPROPRIATIONS FOR CONTINGENT AND MISCELLANEOUS EXPENSES ARE SPECIFICALLY MADE, * * * STREET-CAR FARES, NOT EXCEEDING $600: * * *

SIMILAR PROVISIONS ARE CONTAINED IN SAID ACT UNDER THE HEADINGS "BUREAU OF FOREIGN AND DOMESTIC COMMERCE, CUSTOMS STATISTICS," "BUREAU OF THE CENSUS, CENSUS OF AGRICULTURE," "BUREAU OF STANDARDS, GENERAL EXPENSES," AND "COAST AND GEODETIC SURVEY, OFFICE EXPENSES.'

IT HAS LONG BEEN THE CUSTOM OF DEPARTMENTS AND ESTABLISHMENTS OF THE GOVERNMENT TO PURCHASE UNDER APPROPRIATIONS AVAILABLE THEREFOR STREET CAR TICKETS OR TOKENS IN NECESSARY QUANTITIES FOR ISSUE TO EMPLOYEES AS THE NEEDS OF THE PARTICULAR SERVICE MAY ARISE. THIS PRACTICE HAS BEEN REGARDED AS IN THE GOVERNMENT'S INTEREST, ESPECIALLY WHERE THE TICKETS OR TOKENS ARE SOLD IN QUANTITIES AT A REDUCTION IN PRICE AND PURCHASES OF THIS CHARACTER HAVE BEEN HELD NOT TO BE IN CONTRAVENTION OF THE PROVISIONS OF SECTION 3648, REVISED STATUTES, PROHIBITING PAYMENTS IN ADVANCE OF SERVICES RENDERED (13 COMP. DEC. 503; 9 COMP. GEN. 151).

IN THE CASE OF A STREET-CAR PASS, WHILE THERE IS NO RESTRICTION AS TO TRANSFERABILITY AND NO LIMIT AS TO THE TIMES SUCH PASS MAY BE USED, THERE IS A LIMIT AS TO TIME IN THAT IT MAY BE USED ONLY DURING THE WEEK FOR WHICH IT WAS ISSUED. UNDER SUCH CIRCUMSTANCES, THE MATTER IS SOMEWHAT DIFFERENT THAN IN CASES OF PURCHASES OF TOKENS, TICKETS, ETC., AS TO WHICH THERE IS NO TIME LIMITATION FOR THEIR USE. THE ADMINISTRATIVE CONTROL OVER SUCH PASSES SHOULD NOT ONLY INCLUDE PROVISION OF SAFEGUARD FOR THE USE OF THE PASSES ONLY ON OFFICIAL BUSINESS BUT THE PURCHASES SHOULD BE ONLY IN SUCH NUMBER AS REASONABLY MAY BE FOR ECONOMICAL USE BY THE GOVERNMENT IN THE PERFORMANCE OF SUCH OFFICIAL BUSINESS. IF THE PROPER SAFEGUARDS, INCLUDING SURRENDER OF THE PASS AT CLOSE OF EACH DAY TO PROPER OFFICER HAVING PROPERTY CONTROL, ARE TAKEN BY THE ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICE IN THIS RESPECT, THERE IS NO OBJECTION, FROM A LEGAL STANDPOINT, TO THE PURCHASE OF THE SAME UNDER APPROPRIATIONS AVAILABLE THEREFOR. SEE IN THIS CONNECTION GENERAL REGULATIONS NO. 53 OF JULY 21, 1926, 6 COMP. GEN. 879.