A-71046, FEBRUARY 27, 1936, 15 COMP. GEN. 743

A-71046: Feb 27, 1936

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ARE CONFINED TO STORAGE. 74TH CONGRESS) YOUR INTERPRETATION OF THE FOLLOWING QUOTED PROVISO IS DESIRED: "AND PROVIDED FURTHER. OR AS A BONUS UPON THE EXCHANGE OF SUCH ANIMALS THE SECRETARY OF AGRICULTURE IS AUTHORIZED TO PAY ANY NECESSARY EXPENSES INCURRED IN CONNECTION WITH AND FOR THE PURPOSE OF EFFECTING THE REMOVAL. IT WAS HELD THAT PREPARATORY EXPENSES INCIDENT TO THE SALE OF WILD ANIMALS. FROM GOVERNMENT RESERVATIONS WERE NOT PROPERLY PAYABLE FROM THE PROCEEDS OF SUCH SALES IN THE ABSENCE OF SPECIFIC LEGISLATIVE AUTHORITY THEREFOR. THE DEPARTMENT BELIEVES THAT THE ANSWER TO THIS QUESTION IS IN THE AFFIRMATIVE. WERE EXTRA EXPENSES AS DISTINGUISHED FROM SALARY AND EXPENSES OF REGULAR PERSONNEL ENGAGED IN THE ADMINISTRATION AND MAINTENANCE OF REFUGES AND SINCE THE ACT OF JUNE 15.

A-71046, FEBRUARY 27, 1936, 15 COMP. GEN. 743

SALES - WILD ANIMALS, ETC., ON GOVERNMENT RESERVATIONS - EXPENSES PAYABLE FROM PROCEEDS "NECESSARY EXPENSES" REFERRED TO IN THE ACT OF JUNE 15, 1935, 49 STAT. 383, FOR PAYMENT FROM PROCEEDS OF SALES, ETC., OF ANIMALS, PRODUCTS, ETC., ON GOVERNMENT RESERVATIONS, DO NOT INCLUDE GENERAL ADMINISTRATIVE EXPENSES INVOLVED IN THE ADMINISTRATION OF THE ACT, BUT ARE CONFINED TO STORAGE, TRANSPORTATION, COMMISSIONS ON SALES OF HIDES AND HEADS, AND OTHER EXTRA EXPENSES DIRECTLY ATTRIBUTABLE TO THE SALE.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL MCCARL TO THE SECRETARY OF AGRICULTURE, FEBRUARY 27, 1936:

THERE HAS BEEN RECEIVED YOUR LETTER OF FEBRUARY 12, 1936, AS FOLLOWS:

IN CONNECTION WITH CARRYING OUT THE PROVISIONS OF TITLE IV OF THE ACT OF JUNE 15, 1935 (PUBLIC, NO. 148, 74TH CONGRESS) YOUR INTERPRETATION OF THE FOLLOWING QUOTED PROVISO IS DESIRED:

"AND PROVIDED FURTHER, THAT OUT OF ANY MONEYS RECEIVED FROM THE GRANT, SALE, OR DISPOSITION OF SUCH ANIMALS, PRODUCTS, OR PRIVILEGES, OR AS A BONUS UPON THE EXCHANGE OF SUCH ANIMALS THE SECRETARY OF AGRICULTURE IS AUTHORIZED TO PAY ANY NECESSARY EXPENSES INCURRED IN CONNECTION WITH AND FOR THE PURPOSE OF EFFECTING THE REMOVAL, GRANT, DISPOSITION, OR PRIVILEGES; AND IN ALL CASES SUCH EXPENDITURES SHALL BE DEDUCTED FROM THE GROSS RECEIPTS OF THE REFUGE BEFORE THE SECRETARY OF THE TREASURY SHALL DISTRIBUTE THE 25 PERCENTUM THEREOF TO THE STATES AS HEREINBEFORE PROVIDED.'

IN YOUR DECISION TO THE DEPARTMENT, DATED NOVEMBER 18, 1926, NO. A 16182 (6 COMP. GEN. 348), IT WAS HELD THAT PREPARATORY EXPENSES INCIDENT TO THE SALE OF WILD ANIMALS, ETC., FROM GOVERNMENT RESERVATIONS WERE NOT PROPERLY PAYABLE FROM THE PROCEEDS OF SUCH SALES IN THE ABSENCE OF SPECIFIC LEGISLATIVE AUTHORITY THEREFOR. DOES THE ABOVE-CITED PROVISO AUTHORIZE PAYMENT OF EXPENSES OF THE CHARACTER DISCUSSED IN THE DECISION OF NOVEMBER 18, 1926?

THE DEPARTMENT BELIEVES THAT THE ANSWER TO THIS QUESTION IS IN THE AFFIRMATIVE. THE EXPENSES CONTEMPLATED IN THE DECISION OF NOVEMBER 18, 1926, HOWEVER, WERE EXTRA EXPENSES AS DISTINGUISHED FROM SALARY AND EXPENSES OF REGULAR PERSONNEL ENGAGED IN THE ADMINISTRATION AND MAINTENANCE OF REFUGES AND SINCE THE ACT OF JUNE 15, 1935, REQUIRES THAT "NECESSARY EXPENSES" SHALL BE DEDUCTED FROM GROSS RECEIPTS OF THE REFUGE BEFORE THE 25 PERCENT SHARE IS DISTRIBUTED TO THE STATES, THE QUESTION ARISES AS TO WHETHER IT IS NOW MANDATORY TO PAY "REGULAR" EXPENSES AS WELL AS "EXTRA" EXPENSES FROM PROCEEDS OF SALES.

SPECIFICALLY DOES THE TERM "NECESSARY EXPENSES" INCURRED IN EFFECTING REMOVALS, DISPOSITION, SALES, ETC., INCLUDE SUCH ITEMS AS SALARY AND PER DIEM OF REGULAR EMPLOYEES, GASOLINE AND OIL USED IN GOVERNMENT OWNED TRUCKS AND CARS, ETC., OR DOES IT RELATE ONLY TO EXTRA EXPENSES, SUCH AS STORAGE, TRANSPORTATION, AND COMMISSION ON THE SALE OF HIDES, HEADS, ETC., OF BIG GAME AND PREDATORY ANIMALS, AND THE HIRE OF EXTRA HELP WHEN REQUIRED FOR CAPTURING, CRATING, AND DELIVERY TO SHIPPING POINTS OF ANIMALS REMOVED OR TAKEN FROM A REFUGE?

AN EARLY DECISION WILL BE GREATLY APPRECIATED IN ORDER THAT NECESSARY INSTRUCTIONS MAY BE ISSUED TO FIELD OFFICERS.

IN THE DECISION IN 6 COMP. GEN. 348, IT WAS HELD THAT THE ACT OF JUNE 8, 1896 (29 STAT. 268), AUTHORIZING THE PAYMENT OF "EXPENSES OF SUCH SALES" FROM THE PROCEEDS OF SALES OF OLD MATERIAL HAD RELATION TO SUCH EXPENSES AS WERE DIRECTLY INCIDENTAL TO THE SALE, SUCH AS AUCTIONEER FEES, ADVERTISING, CARTAGE TO PLACE OF SALE, AND COST OF INSPECTION, AND, IN THE CASE OF THE SALE OF SURPLUS ANIMALS, DID NOT INCLUDE EXPENSES SUCH AS HERDING, CORRALLING, FEEDING, SLAUGHTERING, AND REFRIGERATION INCURRED PRIOR TO THE SALES.

THE AUTHORIZATION CONTAINED IN SECTION 401 OF THE ACT OF JUNE 15, 1935 (49 STAT. 383), QUOTED IN YOUR SUBMISSION, IS CONFINED TO THE PAYMENT OF "ANY NECESSARY EXPENSES INCURRED IN CONNECTION WITH AND FOR THE PURPOSE OF EFFECTING THE REMOVAL, GRANT, DISPOSITION OR PRIVILEGES," SUCH EXPENSES BEING REQUIRED TO BE DEDUCTED FROM THE PROCEEDS BEFORE THE SECRETARY OF THE TREASURY DISTRIBUTES 25 PERCENT THEREOF TO THE STATES. THAT IS TO SAY, THE DEDUCTION FROM PROCEEDS OF SALE, ETC., MAY INCLUDE ONLY SUCH EXPENSES AS ARE INCURRED OVER AND ABOVE THE GENERAL ADMINISTRATIVE EXPENSES INVOLVED IN THE ADMINISTRATION OF THE ACT AND WHICH ARE DIRECTLY ATTRIBUTABLE TO THE PARTICULAR SALE, ETC.

ANSWERING YOUR QUESTION SPECIFICALLY YOU ARE ADVISED THAT THE NECESSARY EXPENSES REFERRED TO IN THE STATUTE DO NOT INCLUDE THE SALARY OR PER DIEM OF REGULAR EMPLOYEES, GASOLINE OR OIL USED IN GOVERNMENT TRUCKS AND CARS, BUT ARE CONFINED RATHER TO THE EXTRA EXPENSES SUCH AS STORAGE, TRANSPORTATION, COMMISSIONS ON THE SALES OF HIDES AND HEADS, AND HIRE OF EXTRA HELP WHEN REQUIRED IN THE CAPTURING, CRATING, AND DELIVERING TO SHIPPING POINTS OF THE ANIMALS REMOVED OR TAKEN FROM A REFUGE.