A-62458, MAY 29, 1935, 14 COMP. GEN. 861

A-62458: May 29, 1935

Additional Materials:

Contact:

Edda Emmanuelli Perez
(202) 512-2853
EmmanuelliPerezE@gao.gov

 

Office of Public Affairs
(202) 512-4800
youngc1@gao.gov

THE RIGHT TO THE USE OF THE LAND-AIDED RAILROAD BY THE GOVERNMENT AS A POST ROUTE AND MILITARY ROAD IS A RIGHT ANNEXED TO AND FORMS A PART OF THE GRANT. THE CHARGE FOR THE SERVICE WAS STATED ON BILLS 5130A 5/34 AND 5186A 5/34. THE AMOUNT ALLOWED IN SETTLEMENT WAS $858.41. RAILWAY WAS NOT A BENEFICIARY UNDER THE LAND GRANT AND THE RATES IN QUESTION ARE NOT APPLICABLE VIA Y. FEEL THAT THE GOVERNMENT IS NOT ENTITLED TO A LAND-GRANT DEDUCTION AND OUR BILLS ARE RESTATED FOR FULL COMMERCIAL RATE ON THE STRENGTH OF COLONEL TILLMAN CAMPBELL'S LETTER OF AUGUST 11TH. " IS OWNED BY THE VICKSBURG. THIS LINE OF RAILROAD WAS CONSTRUCTED BY THE VICKSBURG. RAILWAY WAS NOT A BENEFICIARY UNDER THE LAND GRANT.

A-62458, MAY 29, 1935, 14 COMP. GEN. 861

TRANSPORTATION - LAND-GRANT DEDUCTIONS - EARNINGS OF CARRIER OPERATING UNDER TRACKAGE RIGHTS THE RESTRICTIONS AND CONDITIONS OF THE LAND-GRANT ACTS, CONCERNING FREIGHT RATES TO BE CHARGED THE GOVERNMENT BY LAND-GRANT RAILROADS, EXTEND NOT ONLY TO THE ORIGINAL LAND-AIDED COMPANY, BUT TO ANY OTHER COMPANY CARRYING GOVERNMENT FREIGHT OVER SUCH RAILROAD. THE RIGHT TO THE USE OF THE LAND-AIDED RAILROAD BY THE GOVERNMENT AS A POST ROUTE AND MILITARY ROAD IS A RIGHT ANNEXED TO AND FORMS A PART OF THE GRANT, IN THE NATURE OF A COVENANT RUNNING WITH THE LAND--- THE ROADWAY--- AND THAT RIGHT CANNOT BE WAIVED OR SEPARATED FROM THE RAILROAD WITHOUT THE CONSENT OF THE CONGRESS BY APPROPRIATE LEGISLATION.

ASSISTANT COMPTROLLER GENERAL ELLIOTT TO THE AUDITOR, LOUISIANA AND ARKANSAS RAILWAY COMPANY, MAY 29, 1935:

THERE HAS BEEN RECEIVED YOUR LETTER OF DECEMBER 21, 1934, FILE BILL 5130B MAY 1934, RELATING TO SETTLEMENT NO. 95774, NOVEMBER 13, 1934, OF LOUISIANA AND ARKANSAS RAILWAY COMPANY'S BILLS 5130A 5/34 AND 5186A 5/34, FOR THE TRANSPORTATION OF SEVEN CARLOADS GASOLINE, WEIGHING 325,339 POUNDS, FROM HOUSTON, TEX., TO SHREVEPORT, LA., ON BILLS OF LADING WQ- 800440, WQ-800441, AND WQ-800442, DATED APRIL 17, 1934, BILL OF LADING WQ- 800443, DATED APRIL 18, 1934, AND BILLS OF LADING WQ 800757, WQ-800758, AND WQ-800759, DATED MAY 7, 1934.

THE CHARGE FOR THE SERVICE WAS STATED ON BILLS 5130A 5/34 AND 5186A 5/34, AS $501.96 AND $367.47, RESPECTIVELY, TOTAL, $878.43, AT COMMERCIAL RATES, 27 CENTS PER ONE HUNDRED POUNDS. THE AMOUNT ALLOWED IN SETTLEMENT WAS $858.41; AT RATE AS STATED LESS LAND-GRANT DEDUCTION, $19.92, DETERMINED BY THE LAND-AIDED ROUTE, HOUSTON, TEX., TO SHREVEPORT, LA., COMPOSED OF THE MISSOURI, KANSAS, TEXAS, RAILROAD OF TEXAS TO GREENVILLE, TEX., AND THE LOUISIANA, ARKANSAS, AND TEXAS RAILWAY THENCE TO DESTINATION.

THE LETTER OF DECEMBER 21, 1934, STATES---

I AM ENCLOSING HEREWITH MY RESTATED BILLS NOS. 5130B AND 5186B, MAY 1934, IN THE AMOUNTS OF $11.38 AND $8.54 RESPECTIVELY RESTATING AMOUNT DISALLOWED AS THE L.A. AND T. RAILWAY HAS TRACKAGE RIGHTS OVER THE LINE OF THE Y. AND M.V. RAILROAD FROM TEXAS STATE LINE TO SHREVEPORT, LA. THE L.A. AND T. RAILWAY WAS NOT A BENEFICIARY UNDER THE LAND GRANT AND THE RATES IN QUESTION ARE NOT APPLICABLE VIA Y. AND M.V. WE, THEREFORE, FEEL THAT THE GOVERNMENT IS NOT ENTITLED TO A LAND-GRANT DEDUCTION AND OUR BILLS ARE RESTATED FOR FULL COMMERCIAL RATE ON THE STRENGTH OF COLONEL TILLMAN CAMPBELL'S LETTER OF AUGUST 11TH, 1934, FILE 554.4 T.B.L. AND A. RY. CO., FILE BILL 5130.

THE LINE OF RAILROAD CONNECTING WITH THE LOUISIANA, ARKANSAS AND TEXAS RAILWAY AT THE TEXAS STATE LINE, AT A POINT NEAR LORRAINE, LA., AND EXTENDING EASTWARD THROUGH SHREVEPORT, OPERATED BY THE YAZOO AND MISSISSIPPI VALLEY RAILROAD UNDER A LEASE, AND OVER WHICH YOU STATE THE LOUISIANA, ARKANSAS AND TEXAS RAILWAY "HAS TRACKAGE RIGHTS," IS OWNED BY THE VICKSBURG, SHREVEPORT AND PACIFIC RAILROAD COMPANY. THIS LINE OF RAILROAD WAS CONSTRUCTED BY THE VICKSBURG, SHREVEPORT AND TEXAS RAILROAD, A PREDECESSOR OF THE VICKSBURG, SHREVEPORT AND PACIFIC RAILWAY CO., WITH THE AID OF LANDS GRANTED UNDER ACT OF CONGRESS JUNE 3, 1856 (11 STAT. 18, 19), WHICH ACT PROVIDED THAT---

* * * THE SAID RAILROADS SHALL BE AND REMAIN A PUBLIC HIGHWAY FOR THE USE OF THE GOVERNMENT OF THE UNITED STATES, FREE FROM TOLL OR OTHER CHARGE, UPON THE TRANSPORTATION OF ANY PROPERTY OR TROOPS OF THE UNITED STATES.

YOU URGE THAT---

* * * THE L.A. AND T. RAILWAY WAS NOT A BENEFICIARY UNDER THE LAND GRANT, AND THE RATES IN QUESTION ARE NOT APPLICABLE VIA Y. AND M.V. * * * AND THAT THE GOVERNMENT IS NOT ENTITLED TO A LAND-GRANT DEDUCTION * * *.

THE QUESTION SUBMITTED BY YOU IS NOT NEW AS MATTERS OF SIMILAR IMPORT HAVE BEEN CONSIDERED HERETOFORE BY THIS OFFICE AND HAVE BEEN THE SUBJECT OF DECISIONS OF THE COURTS. IN THIS CONNECTION, YOU ARE REFERRED TO THE CASE OF THE ASTORIA AND COLUMBIA RIVER RAILROAD COMPANY V. UNITED STATES, REPORTED IN 41 CT.CLS. 284, WHEREIN WAS DISCUSSED THE QUESTION OF FREIGHT RATES TO WHICH THE PLAINTIFF COMPANY WAS ENTITLED FOR TRANSPORTING GOVERNMENT PROPERTY OVER LINES OF ANOTHER COMPANY, WHICH WAS IN PART CONSTRUCTED BY THE GOVERNMENT GRANT OF LANDS. IT WAS HELD, QUOTING FROM THE SYLLABUS, THAT:

THE RESTRICTIONS AND CONDITIONS OF THE ACT * * * CONCERNING FREIGHT RATES TO BE CHARGED THE GOVERNMENT BY LAND-GRANT ROADS EXTEND NOT ONLY TO THE ORIGINAL LAND-AIDED COMPANY BUT TO ANY OTHER COMPANY CARRYING GOVERNMENT FREIGHT OVER SUCH A ROADWAY.

AND ON PAGE 303, IT WAS SAID---

THE RIGHT TO THE USE OF THE RAILROAD BY THE GOVERNMENT AS A POST ROUTE AND MILITARY ROAD IS A RIGHT ANNEXED TO AND FORMS A PART OF THE GRANT, IN THE NATURE OF A COVENANT RUNNING WITH THE LAND--- THE ROADWAY--- AND THAT RIGHT CANNOT BE WAIVED OR SEPARATED FROM THE RAILROAD WITHOUT THE CONSENT OF CONGRESS BY APPROPRIATE LEGISLATION.

SEE ALSO CHICAGO, ST. PAUL, MINNEAPOLIS AND OMAHA RWY. CO. V. UNITED STATES, REPORTED IN 217 U.S. 180.

AGENT JOHANSON'S I.C.C. 2422 PUBLISHES THE 27-CENT RATE ON GASOLINE, FROM HOUSTON, TEXAS, TO SHREVEPORT, LOUISIANA, APPLICABLE VIA THE MISSOURI, KANSAS, TEXAS RAILROAD OF TEXAS TO GREENVILLE, TEXAS, AND THE LOUISIANA, ARKANSAS AND TEXAS RAILWAY TO DESTINATION. CHARGES FOR THE TRANSPORTATION OF GOVERNMENT PROPERTY OVER LAND-GRANT RAILROADS ARE SUBJECT TO THE ACT OF JUNE 7, 1924 (43 STAT. 486), WHICH PROVIDES THAT PAYMENTS ARE TO BE MADE ON BASIS OF NOT TO EXCEED 50 PERCENT OF TARIFF RATES FOR LIKE TRANSPORTATION PERFORMED FOR THE PUBLIC AT LARGE.

THE ALLOWANCE APPEARS TO HAVE BEEN DETERMINED ON BASIS OF THE TARIFF RATE AND CHARGE APPLICABLE OVER THE LAND-AIDED RAILROAD. THE SETTLEMENT IS, ACCORDINGLY, SUSTAINED.