A-72622, APRIL 23, 1936, 15 COMP. GEN. 930

A-72622: Apr 23, 1936

Additional Materials:

Contact:

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

 

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

TRANSPORTATION - OFFICERS AND EMPLOYEES - COSTS IN EXCESS OF ROUND TRIP FARES A GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEE ON OFFICIAL TRAVEL IS CHARGEABLE WITH THE COST OF TRANSPORTATION OBTAINED ON GOVERNMENT TRANSPORTATION REQUESTS IN EXCESS OF AVAILABLE ROUND TRIP FARES BETWEEN THE POINTS OF TRAVEL NOTWITHSTANDING THE EXISTENCE OF SUCH REDUCED FARES MAY NOT HAVE BEEN KNOWN TO THE TRAVELER. WAS CANCELLED BY NOTICE OF NOVEMBER 12. TRANSPORTATION WAS SECURED ON TRANSPORTATION REQUESTS AS FOLLOWS: TABLE 10/30/35 T/R 1C-240754. 72.43 215.45 THERE WAS WITHHELD FROM CERTIFICATION IN THE PREAUDIT OF VOUCHER 870855 THE AMOUNT OF $75.25 REPRESENTING THE EXCESS COST OF TRANSPORTATION OVER THE COST OF THE AVAILABLE ROUND TRIP FARES COMPUTED AS FOLLOWS: TABLE 45-DAY SUMMER TOURIST FARE.

A-72622, APRIL 23, 1936, 15 COMP. GEN. 930

TRANSPORTATION - OFFICERS AND EMPLOYEES - COSTS IN EXCESS OF ROUND TRIP FARES A GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEE ON OFFICIAL TRAVEL IS CHARGEABLE WITH THE COST OF TRANSPORTATION OBTAINED ON GOVERNMENT TRANSPORTATION REQUESTS IN EXCESS OF AVAILABLE ROUND TRIP FARES BETWEEN THE POINTS OF TRAVEL NOTWITHSTANDING THE EXISTENCE OF SUCH REDUCED FARES MAY NOT HAVE BEEN KNOWN TO THE TRAVELER.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL MCCARL TO THE CHAIRMAN, INTERSTATE COMMERCE COMMISSION, APRIL 23, 1936:

THERE HAS BEEN RESUBMITTED TO THIS OFFICE RECLAIM VOUCHER NO. 4957 FOR $75.25 IN FAVOR OF WILLIAM A. DISQUE, HEAD EXAMINER, INTERSTATE COMMERCE COMMISSION, REPRESENTING THE AMOUNT WITHHELD FROM CERTIFICATION ON VOUCHER 870855, DECEMBER 1935 ACCOUNTS OF G. F. ALLEN, COVERING REIMBURSEMENT FOR TRAVEL PERFORMED PURSUANT TO ORDERS DATED OCTOBER 5 AND OCTOBER 26, 1935. THE ORDERS DIRECTED THE TRAVELER TO PROCEED FROM WASHINGTON, D.C., HIS OFFICIAL STATION, AND TO HOLD HEARINGS IN SUCCESSION AT ST. PAUL, MINN.; BILLINGS, MONT.; YAKIMA, WASH.; SAN FRANCISCO AND LOS ANGELES, CALIF.; DENVER, COLO.; AND HELENA, MONT. HOWEVER, THE HEARING AT DENVER, SCHEDULED TO BE HELD ON NOVEMBER 22, WAS CANCELLED BY NOTICE OF NOVEMBER 12, 1935, RECEIVED BY THE TRAVELER AT LOS ANGELES ON NOVEMBER 18.

TRANSPORTATION WAS SECURED ON TRANSPORTATION REQUESTS AS FOLLOWS:

TABLE 10/30/35 T/R 1C-240754, WASHINGTON TO LOS ANGELES ----------- $103.92 11/22/35 T/R 1C-240763, LOS ANGELES TO HELENA --------------- 39.10 11/27/35 T/R 1C-240765, HELENA TO WASHINGTON ---------------- 72.43

215.45

THERE WAS WITHHELD FROM CERTIFICATION IN THE PREAUDIT OF VOUCHER 870855 THE AMOUNT OF $75.25 REPRESENTING THE EXCESS COST OF TRANSPORTATION OVER THE COST OF THE AVAILABLE ROUND TRIP FARES COMPUTED AS FOLLOWS:

TABLE 45-DAY SUMMER TOURIST FARE, WASHINGTON TO SAN FRANCISCO, VIA

SEATTLE AND RETURNING VIA LOS ANGELES AND OGDEN ------------- $120.75 10- DAY ROUND TRIP, OGDEN TO HELENA --------------------------- 19.45

140.20

THE TRAVELER RECLAIMED $75.25 ON VOUCHER 4957 ASSERTING THAT THE OGDEN, UTAH, COMBINATION SHOULD NOT HAVE BEEN TAKEN INTO CONSIDERATION SINCE HEWAS NOT SCHEDULED TO STOP OR PASS THROUGH OGDEN WHEN THE TICKET WAS PURCHASED AT WASHINGTON, D.C.; THAT UNDER THE ORIGINAL ORDERS DENVER WAS SCHEDULED AS THE NEXT STOP AFTER LOS ANGELES AND NOT HELENA; THAT HE COULD NOT HAVE PURCHASED A TICKET FROM WASHINGTON, D.C., TO THE COAST WITH RETURN VIA OGDEN, AFTER HE ARRIVED AT LOS ANGELES; THAT EVEN IF HE COULD HAVE PURCHASED SUCH A TICKET THERE WAS NO REQUIREMENT AND NO ASSURANCE THAT IT WOULD HAVE BEEN ROUTED FROM LOS ANGELES TO DENVER VIA OGDEN; THAT ON HIS RETURN FROM LOS ANGELES THERE WAS NOTHING TO PREVENT HIS TRAVEL ON THE SANTA FE RAILWAY THROUGH ARIZONA AND NEW MEXICO; AND THAT HE ACTUALLY HAD TRAVELED TO HELENA VIA OGDEN ONLY BECAUSE THE DENVER HEARING HAD BEEN CANCELED AND BECAUSE OGDEN HAPPENED TO BE AN INTERMEDIATE POINT ON THE DIRECT ROUTE FROM LOS ANGELES TO HELENA. UPON THESE REPRESENTATIONS THERE WAS CERTIFIED FOR PAYMENT THE SUM OF $40.95, BUT THE VOUCHER WAS NOT PAID AS CERTIFIED.

THE RECLAIM VOUCHER IS NOW BEFORE THIS OFFICE UPON RESUBMISSION THEREOF DIRECT BY THE TRAVELER WHO URGES FULL ALLOWANCE OF HIS CLAIM, CONTENDING THAT WHILE HE RECOGNIZED THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS REQUIRED TRAVEL VIA THE CHEAPEST AVAILABLE ROUTE, TRAVEL OVER THE CHEAPEST ROUTE IN THIS INSTANCE WAS NOT IN THE BEST INTERESTS OF THE GOVERNMENT, AND, THEREFORE, THAT AN EXCEPTION TO THE GENERAL RULE SHOULD BE MADE IN THIS CASE.

PARAGRAPH 16 OF THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS REQUIRE THE PURCHASE OF THE MOST ECONOMICAL TICKET WHEREVER PRACTICABLE AND THE FACT THAT THE EXISTENCE OF REDUCED ROUND-TRIP FARES MAY NOT HAVE BEEN KNOWN TO THE TRAVELER DOES NOT RELIEVE HIM FROM THE NECESSITY OF TAKING ADVANTAGE OF SUCH FARES, AND FURNISHES NO JUSTIFICATION FOR AN ALLOWANCE IN EXCESS OF THE COST OF SUCH REDUCED ROUND-TRIP FARES. THE TARIFFS ON FILE IN THIS OFFICE SHOW THAT AT THE TIME THE TRAVEL WAS PERFORMED THERE WAS AVAILABLE A REGULAR SUMMER ROUND-TRIP TICKET TO THE WEST COAST WHICH WOULD HAVE INCLUDED TRANSPORTATION TO ALL POINTS ON THE TRAVELER'S ITINERARY AS ORIGINALLY SCHEDULED, EXCEPT HELENA, MONT., AND WHICH WOULD HAVE BEEN ROUTED FROM LOS ANGELES TO DENVER VIA OGDEN, AND A SIDE TRIP COSTING $35.95 COULD HAVE BEEN MADE FROM DENVER TO HELENA, AT A SAVING OF $87.66, AS COMPARED WITH THE COST OF A ONE-WAY TICKET OVER THE SAME ROUTE. (SEE B. AND O. JOINT TARIFF S.T.W. NO. 10, I.C.C. NO. A-10980.) IT IS TRUE, AS CONTENDED BY THE TRAVELER, THAT AFTER LEAVING LOS ANGELES TRANSPORTATION COULD HAVE BEEN PROCURED OVER THE SANTA FE THROUGH ARIZONA AND NEW MEXICO WHICH WOULD NOT HAVE TAKEN HIM THROUGH OGDEN BUT THIS CONTENTION OVERLOOKS THE FACT THAT UNDER THIS ROUTING HE WOULD NOT HAVE ARRIVED IN DENVER UNTIL 1:35 P.M., WHEREAS BY TRAVELING OVER THE UNION PACIFIC VIA OGDEN HE WOULD HAVE ARRIVED AT 10:30 A.M. (SEE IN THIS CONNECTION PARAGRAPH 9 OF THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS.)

BE THAT AS IT MAY, THE AMOUNT PROPERLY FOR ALLOWANCE IN THIS CASE MUST BE COMPUTED UPON THE BASIS OF A ROUND-TRIP TICKET COSTING $120.75, AS REQUIRED BY THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS, IN WHICH EVENT, HAVING IN VIEW THE CANCELATION OF THE DENVER HEARING, THE TRAVELER COULD HAVE LEFT THE TRAIN AT OGDEN AND PROCEEDED DIRECTLY TO HELENA. THE COMPLETION OF THE HEARING AT HELENA, HE COULD HAVE RETURNED TO OGDEN AND RESUMED HIS RETURN TRIP TO WASHINGTON, IN WHICH EVENT THE ENTIRE COST OF TRANSPORTATION WOULD HAVE AMOUNTED TO $140.20, AS AT THAT TIME THERE WAS AVAILABLE A 10-DAY ROUND-TRIP TICKET BETWEEN OGDEN AND HELENA COSTING $19.45. IN THE CIRCUMSTANCES THE DEDUCTION OF $75.25 ON VOUCHER NO. 870855 WAS CORRECT AND SUCH ACTION IS HEREBY SUSTAINED. THE PREAUDIT CERTIFICATION OF THE SUM OF $40.95 ON THE RECLAIM VOUCHER IS HEREBY CANCELLED, AND THE VOUCHER WILL BE RETAINED IN THIS OFFICE.