A-67151, NOVEMBER 19, 1935, 15 COMP. GEN. 427

A-67151: Nov 19, 1935

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" IS AVAILABLE FOR THE NECESSARY COST OF MAKING MINOR ALTERATIONS. PROVIDED THE WRITTEN CONSENT OF THE LESSOR THERETO IS OBTAINED AS REQUIRED BY THE LEASE. IS VACATING ITS QUARTERS AND MOVING INTO THE SAME BUILDING WITH THE AMERICAN LEGATION AT RIGA. CERTAIN CHANGES IN THE ARRANGEMENT OF SPACE HAVE BECOME NECESSARY: (1) IN ONE OF THE ATTICS OF THE BUILDING. IT IS PROPOSED TO LAY A FLOOR IN ORDER TO ACCOMMODATE CERTAIN FILES AND ARCHIVES. THERE ARE ENCLOSED A COPY OF DESPATCH NO. 911 OF OCTOBER 12. THERE IS ENCLOSED A COPY OF DESPATCH NO. 912 OF OCTOBER 12. IT WILL BE APPRECIATED IF YOU WILL INDICATE AT AN EARLY DATE WHETHER THE COSTS OF THE CHANGES SUGGESTED ARE ALLOWABLE AS EXPENDITURES FROM THE APPROPRIATION "CONTINGENT EXPENSES.

A-67151, NOVEMBER 19, 1935, 15 COMP. GEN. 427

LEASES - PRIVATE PROPERTY - REPAIRS AND IMPROVEMENTS THE APPROPRIATION "CONTINGENT EXPENSES, FOREIGN SERVICE," IS AVAILABLE FOR THE NECESSARY COST OF MAKING MINOR ALTERATIONS, IF DETERMINED BY THE SECRETARY OF STATE TO BE IN THE INTERESTS OF THE UNITED STATES, IN A BUILDING LEASED FOR USE AS AN AMERICAN LEGATION FOR THE PURPOSE OF ADAPTING THE BUILDING FOR USE ALSO AS A CONSULATE, WHICH ALTERATIONS CANNOT BE REQUIRED OF THE LESSOR UNDER THE TERMS OF THE LEASE, PROVIDED THE WRITTEN CONSENT OF THE LESSOR THERETO IS OBTAINED AS REQUIRED BY THE LEASE.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL MCCARL TO THE SECRETARY OF STATE, NOVEMBER 19, 1935:

THERE HAS BEEN RECEIVED YOUR LETTER OF OCTOBER 30, 1935, AS FOLLOWS:

IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE POLICY OF COMBINING WHEREVER POSSIBLE THE DIPLOMATIC AND CONSULAR REPRESENTATION OF THIS GOVERNMENT IN FOREIGN CAPITALS, THE AMERICAN CONSULATE AT RIGA, LATVIA, IS VACATING ITS QUARTERS AND MOVING INTO THE SAME BUILDING WITH THE AMERICAN LEGATION AT RIGA, WHICH THE LEGATION OCCUPIES UNDER CONTRACT OF LEASE NO. S30FA 5.

IN ADAPTING THE LEGATION BUILDING TO USE FOR COMBINED OFFICES OF THE LEGATION AND CONSULATE, CERTAIN CHANGES IN THE ARRANGEMENT OF SPACE HAVE BECOME NECESSARY:

(1) IN ONE OF THE ATTICS OF THE BUILDING, NOW UNFINISHED, IT IS PROPOSED TO LAY A FLOOR IN ORDER TO ACCOMMODATE CERTAIN FILES AND ARCHIVES. THERE ARE ENCLOSED A COPY OF DESPATCH NO. 911 OF OCTOBER 12, 1935, AND PHOTOSTATIC COPIES OF ITS ATTACHED DIAGRAMS, FROM THE LEGATION AT RIGA, SHOWING THE CROWDED CONDITION OF THE FLOORS NOW IN USE AND THE NEED FOR ADDITIONAL SPACE IN THE ATTIC FOR STORAGE PURPOSES.

(2) IN THE MINISTER'S NEW OFFICE IT HAS BEEN FOUND NECESSARY TO MAKE CERTAIN ALTERATIONS OF DOORWAYS. THERE IS ENCLOSED A COPY OF DESPATCH NO. 912 OF OCTOBER 12, 1935, FROM THE LEGATION AT RIGA, TOGETHER WITH A PHOTOSTATIC COPY OF THE DIAGRAM ENCLOSED THEREWITH, WHICH EXPLAINS AND SHOWS THE CHANGES TO BE MADE IN THIS CONNECTION.

IT WILL BE APPRECIATED IF YOU WILL INDICATE AT AN EARLY DATE WHETHER THE COSTS OF THE CHANGES SUGGESTED ARE ALLOWABLE AS EXPENDITURES FROM THE APPROPRIATION "CONTINGENT EXPENSES, FOREIGN SERVICE, 1936.'

FROM THE COPIES OF DISPATCHES, NOS. 911 AND 912, EACH DATED OCTOBER 12, 1935, ACCOMPANYING YOUR LETTER, IT APPEARS THAT THE REPAIRS AND ALTERATIONS ARE PROPOSED FOR THE PURPOSE OF ADAPTING THE BUILDING FOR USE BY THE AMERICAN CONSULATE AT RIGA, LATVIA, IN ADDITION TO USE BY THE AMERICAN LEGATION--- THE LATTER BEING THE PURPOSE FOR WHICH THE BUILDING WAS LEASED. THE LAYING OF A FLOOR IN ONE OF THE UNFINISHED ATTICS OF THE BUILDING TO ACCOMMODATE CERTAIN FILES AND ARCHIVES AND THE ALTERATION OF DOORWAYS--- REMOVING DOORS FROM CERTAIN EXISTING DOORWAYS AND HANGING THEM IN OTHER EXISTING DOORWAYS, TO MEET A GOVERNMENT NEED ARISING MORE THAN A YEAR AFTER THE BEGINNING OF THE TENANCY, DO NOT APPEAR TO BE "CORRECTIONS" SUCH AS THE LESSOR IS REQUIRED, UNDER PARAGRAPH 9 OF THE LEASE, TO MAKE. NEITHER DOES IT APPEAR THAT THESE ALTERATIONS CONSTITUTE PERMANENT IMPROVEMENTS TO PRIVATE PROPERTY SUCH AS ARE NOT AUTHORIZED TO BE MADE AT THE EXPENSE OF THE GOVERNMENT.

THE APPROPRIATION MADE IN THE ACT OF MARCH 22, 1935, 49 STAT. 70, FOR CONTINGENT EXPENSES, FOREIGN SERVICE, CONTAINS, IN ADDITION TO THE PROVISION FOR "REPAIRS, PRESERVATION, AND MAINTENANCE OF GOVERNMENT OWNED DIPLOMATIC AND CONSULAR PROPERTIES," A SEPARATE PROVISION FOR ,REPAIRS, INCLUDING MINOR ALTERATIONS," WITHOUT ANY QUALIFICATION AS TO OWNERSHIP OF THE PROPERTIES. THE ALTERATIONS HERE IN QUESTION WOULD APPEAR TO BE "MINOR ALTERATIONS.'

PARAGRAPH 11 OF THE LEASE PROVIDES "THE LESSEE SHALL NOT HAVE THE RIGHT TO UNDERTAKE ANY RECONSTRUCTION OR CHANGES OF THE PREMISES WITHOUT THE WRITTEN CONSENT OF THE LESSOR.'

ACCORDINGLY, I HAVE TO ADVISE THAT IF YOU SHOULD DETERMINE IT WILL BE IN THE INTERESTS OF THE UNITED STATES TO MAKE SUCH ALTERATIONS, AND THE LESSOR GIVES WRITTEN CONSENT THERETO, THE APPROPRIATION "CONTINGENT EXPENSES, FOREIGN SERVICE" IS AVAILABLE FOR THE NECESSARY COSTS THEREOF.