A-58632, JANUARY 16, 1935, 14 COMP. GEN. 550

A-58632: Jan 16, 1935

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TRAVELING EXPENSES - CHANGE OF STATION A PRISON GUARD WHO MADE APPLICATION FOR AND WAS GRANTED TRANSFER FROM ONE FEDERAL PRISON TO ANOTHER FOR HIS OWN CONVENIENCE IS NOT ENTITLED TO REIMBURSEMENT OF TRAVELING EXPENSES INCURRED INCIDENT THERETO. WHEREIN THERE WAS DISALLOWED AND RECHARGED THE AMOUNT OF $125.28. REIMBURSEMENT OF THE EXPENSES INCURRED WAS IN CONTRAVENTION OF THE PROVISIONS OF SECTION 2. BECAUSE THE TRANSFER WAS HELD TO HAVE BEEN FOR THE CONVENIENCE OF THE EMPLOYEE. IT IS NOTED THAT HIS RESIGNATION WAS FINALLY ACCEPTED AS OF JUNE 15. AS NO LEAVE IS PAYABLE TO AN EMPLOYEE NOT IN THE SERVICE. THERE IS NO AUTHORITY TO PAY HIM FOR THIS PERIOD. THE CLAIMANT WAS APPOINTED TO A POSITION AS GUARD AT DETENTION HEADQUARTERS.

A-58632, JANUARY 16, 1935, 14 COMP. GEN. 550

TRAVELING EXPENSES - CHANGE OF STATION A PRISON GUARD WHO MADE APPLICATION FOR AND WAS GRANTED TRANSFER FROM ONE FEDERAL PRISON TO ANOTHER FOR HIS OWN CONVENIENCE IS NOT ENTITLED TO REIMBURSEMENT OF TRAVELING EXPENSES INCURRED INCIDENT THERETO, UNDER THE ACT OF MARCH 3, 1933, 47 STAT. 1513.

DECISION BY COMPTROLLER GENERAL MCCARL, JANUARY 16, 1935:

WILLIAM B. BECHTAL, FORMER PRISON GUARD, ALCATRAZ ISLAND, CALIF., REQUESTED DECEMBER 26, 1934, REVIEW OF SETTLEMENT NO. US-3874-J (COL 0468419), DATED DECEMBER 10, 1934, WHEREIN THERE WAS DISALLOWED AND RECHARGED THE AMOUNT OF $125.28, REPRESENTING THE SUM PAID TO HIM AS REIMBURSEMENT OF TRAVEL AND OTHER EXPENSES INCURRED FROM APRIL 12 TO APRIL 18, 1934, INCIDENT TO HIS TRANSFER AS GUARD FROM THE UNITED STATES NORTHEASTERN PENITENTIARY, LEWISBURG, PA., TO A LIKE POSITION AT THE UNITED STATES PENITENTIARY, ALCATRAZ ISLAND, CALIF.

REIMBURSEMENT OF THE EXPENSES INCURRED WAS IN CONTRAVENTION OF THE PROVISIONS OF SECTION 2, ACT OF MARCH 3, 1933, 47 STAT. 1513, BECAUSE THE TRANSFER WAS HELD TO HAVE BEEN FOR THE CONVENIENCE OF THE EMPLOYEE. THERE HAS BEEN CREDITED AGAINST THE ERRONEOUS PAYMENT OF $125.28 THE AMOUNT OF $50.55, REPRESENTING SALARY OTHERWISE DUE FOR THE PERIOD JUNE 1 TO JUNE 15, 1934, FOR SERVICES RENDERED AT ALCATRAZ ISLAND, CALIF., LEAVING A BALANCE OF $74.73 DUE THE UNITED STATES.

IN CONNECTION WITH CLAIM FOR PAY FOR THE PERIOD JUNE 16 TO JUNE 25, 1934, BY REASON OF THE FACT THAT THE FORMER GUARD HAD 6 1/2 DAYS' ANNUAL LEAVE DUE HIM AT THE TIME OF HIS RESIGNATION, WHICH HE REQUESTED TO BECOME EFFECTIVE JUNE 25, 1934, IT IS NOTED THAT HIS RESIGNATION WAS FINALLY ACCEPTED AS OF JUNE 15, 1934, AND AS NO LEAVE IS PAYABLE TO AN EMPLOYEE NOT IN THE SERVICE, THERE IS NO AUTHORITY TO PAY HIM FOR THIS PERIOD.

THE FACTS APPEAR TO BE AS FOLLOWS:

ON AUGUST 11, 1932, THE CLAIMANT WAS APPOINTED TO A POSITION AS GUARD AT DETENTION HEADQUARTERS, NEW YORK CITY, AND ON OCTOBER 10, 1932, WAS TRANSFERRED TO THE UNITED STATES NORTHEASTERN PENITENTIARY AT LEWISBURG, PA., WHERE HE WAS STILL EMPLOYED ON DECEMBER 7, 1933, WHEN HE MADE APPLICATION FOR A TRANSFER TO THE CONTEMPLATED NEW FEDERAL PRISON AT ALCATRAZ ISLAND, SAN FRANCISCO, CALIF., AND STATED THAT IF HE COULD OBTAIN THE TRANSFER, HE WOULD DEFRAY HIS OWN EXPENSES FOR TRANSPORTATION. HIS TRANSFER WAS DIRECTED BY LETTER DATED DECEMBER 8, 1933. ON MARCH 28, 1934, HE WAS TEMPORARILY DETAILED FOR DUTY AT MCNEIL ISLAND, WASH., FOR FURTHER INSTRUCTIONS TO PREPARE HIM FOR DUTY AT ALCATRAZ, WITH AUTHORITY TO TRAVEL BY HIS PERSONALLY-OWNED CAR FROM LEWISBURG, PA., TO STILACOOM, WASH., FOR WHICH IT WAS STATED, HE WAS TO BE REIMBURSED FOR EXPENSES AT THE RATE OF 3 CENTS PER MILE AND PER DIEM WHILE EN ROUTE. THE TRAVEL WAS PERFORMED FROM APRIL 12 TO 18, 1934. HE WAS REIMBURSED FOR EXPENSES OF THIS TRIP UPON PREAUDIT VOUCHER NO. 116, ACCOUNTS OF JOHN DEAN MILLER, DISBURSING CLERK AT THE UNITED STATES PENITENTIARY, ALCATRAZ ISLAND, CALIF., BY CHECK NO. 342, DATED MAY 26, 1934, IN THE SUM OF $125.28. REPORTED AT THE ALCATRAZ ISLAND PRISON ON OR ABOUT MAY 2, 1934, AND RESIGNED EFFECTIVE JUNE 15, 1934, TO ACCEPT A POSITION WITH A BANK IN SAN FRANCISCO.

THE BUREAU OF PRISONS REPORTED THAT, UNDER THE CIRCUMSTANCES, IT CONSIDERED THE TRANSFER WAS EFFECTED FOR THE CONVENIENCE OF THE FORMER EMPLOYEE AND THAT NO PART OF THE EXPENSES INCURRED INCIDENT TO HIS TRANSFER IS PROPERLY CHARGEABLE TO THE UNITED STATES.

AS THE FACTS APPEAR TO JUSTIFY THE CONCLUSION THAT THE TRANSFER OF THIS FORMER EMPLOYEE WAS FOR HIS OWN BENEFIT OR CONVENIENCE, WITHIN THE MEANING OF THE PROVISIONS OF SECTION 2 OF THE ACT OF MARCH 3, 1933, 47 STAT. 1513, THE TRAVELING EXPENSES INCIDENT TO SUCH TRANSFER ARE NOT A PROPER CHARGE AGAINST THE GOVERNMENT. ACCORDINGLY, SETTLEMENT US-3874-J (COL-0468419), DATED DECEMBER 10, 1934, MUST BE AND IS SUSTAINED.

IT APPEARS THAT ON SEPTEMBER 19, 1934, MR. BECHTAL APPLIED FOR AND WAS PAID ON CHECK NO. 4530 THE SUM OF $89.98 AS REFUND OF RETIREMENT DEDUCTIONS.

THE CLAIMANT HEREIN, WILLIAM B. BECHTAL, SHOULD FORWARD TO THIS OFFICE WITHOUT DELAY THE SUM OF $74.73, REPRESENTING THE AMOUNT DUE THE UNITED STATES.