A-87927, AUGUST 24, 1937, 17 COMP. GEN. 183

A-87927: Aug 24, 1937

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WHO AFTER FURLOUGH WAS REEMPLOYED AT AN INCREASE IN SALARY BY THE DISTRICT TO WHICH HE WAS TEMPORARILY ASSIGNED. IS NOT ENTITLED TO REIMBURSEMENT FOR EXPENSES IN CONNECTION WITH TRANSPORTATION OF HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS AS FOR CHANGE OF PERMANENT DUTY STATION. 1937: THERE IS BEFORE THIS OFFICE FOR CONSIDERATION RESUBMITTED PREAUDIT VOUCHER APPROVED BY THE ACTING DISTRICT ENGINEER. THE CIRCUMSTANCES UNDER WHICH THE COLLECTIONS WERE MADE AND THE REASONS ASSIGNED FOR THE PROPOSED REFUND ARE SET FORTH IN LETTER OF THE ACTING DISTRICT ENGINEER AT FORT PECK TO THE CHIEF OF ENGINEERS. THERE IS SUBMITTED HEREWITH FOR TRANSMISSION TO THE GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE A VOUCHER WHEREBY IT IS PROPOSED TO REFUND TO MR.

A-87927, AUGUST 24, 1937, 17 COMP. GEN. 183

TRANSPORTATION - HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS - FURLOUGH AND REEMPLOYMENT EMPLOYEE, TEMPORARILY DETAILED FROM ONE WAR DEPARTMENT ENGINEERING DISTRICT TO ANOTHER, WHO AFTER FURLOUGH WAS REEMPLOYED AT AN INCREASE IN SALARY BY THE DISTRICT TO WHICH HE WAS TEMPORARILY ASSIGNED, IS NOT ENTITLED TO REIMBURSEMENT FOR EXPENSES IN CONNECTION WITH TRANSPORTATION OF HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS AS FOR CHANGE OF PERMANENT DUTY STATION, THE REEMPLOYMENT BEING A NEW APPOINTMENT AND THE EXPENSES BEING INCIDENT TO REPORTING TO FIRST DUTY STATION, AND PERSONAL TO THE EMPLOYEE. 14 COMP. GEN. 871, AMPLIFIED.

ACTING COMPTROLLER GENERAL ELLIOTT TO THE SECRETARY OF WAR, AUGUST 24, 1937:

THERE IS BEFORE THIS OFFICE FOR CONSIDERATION RESUBMITTED PREAUDIT VOUCHER APPROVED BY THE ACTING DISTRICT ENGINEER, FORT PECK, MONT., IN FAVOR OF JOHN S. WILFLEY, FORMER SURVEYMAN IN THE FORT PECK ENGINEER DISTRICT, IN THE AMOUNT OF $186.74. THE VOUCHER COVERS A PROPOSED REFUND FROM SPECIAL DEPOSITS, OF THE AMOUNT COLLECTED FROM THE FORMER EMPLOYEE BY REASON OF PACKING, CRATING, AND TRANSPORTATION OF HIS HOUSEHOLD GOODS FROM ROLLA, MO., TO WIOTA, MONT., AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE INCIDENT TO HIS FURLOUGH FROM THE KANSAS CITY, MO., ENGINEER DISTRICT ON JANUARY 15, 1934, AND REEMPLOYMENT IN THE FORT PECK DISTRICT ON JANUARY 16, 1934.

THE CIRCUMSTANCES UNDER WHICH THE COLLECTIONS WERE MADE AND THE REASONS ASSIGNED FOR THE PROPOSED REFUND ARE SET FORTH IN LETTER OF THE ACTING DISTRICT ENGINEER AT FORT PECK TO THE CHIEF OF ENGINEERS, DATED MARCH 29, 1937, AS FOLLOWS:

1. THERE IS SUBMITTED HEREWITH FOR TRANSMISSION TO THE GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE A VOUCHER WHEREBY IT IS PROPOSED TO REFUND TO MR. JOHN S. WILFLEY THE SUM OF $186.74, WHICH HAS BEEN COLLECTED FROM HIM AND HELD IN THE SPECIAL DEPOSIT ACCOUNT, IN ANTICIPATION OF AN EXCEPTION OR SUSPENSION FROM THE GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE BASED ON DECISION OF THE COMPTROLLER GENERAL A-60370, DATED JUNE 4, 1935, TO PAYMENTS MADE ON VOUCHERS HEREINAFTER DESCRIBED, FOR THE REASON THAT THIS OFFICE ATTEMPTED TO PROTECT THE DISBURSING OFFICERS CONCERNED.

2. AS HAS BEEN STATED IN PREVIOUS CORRESPONDENCE, THIS OFFICE PREPARED A TABULATION OF PAYMENTS TO OR ON ACCOUNT OF PERSONS TRANSFERRED TO THIS DISTRICT UPON RECEIPT OF DECISION OF THE COMPTROLLER GENERAL A-60370 DATED JUNE 4, 1935, AND BEING COGNIZANT OF THE TEMPORARY NATURE OF EMPLOYMENTS ON THIS PROJECT, PROCEEDED TO MAKE COLLECTION OF ALL ITEMS PAID, IN ORDER TO AFFORD PROTECTION TO THE DISBURSING OFFICER CONCERNED. IT WAS NOT KNOWN AT THE TIME OF MAKING THESE COLLECTIONS THAT THE COMPTROLLER GENERAL WOULD LATER AMEND THE ABOVE-MENTIONED DECISION WITH RESPECT TO THE TRANSFER OF SOME EMPLOYEES WHERE THE CIRCUMSTANCES DIFFERED FROM THOSE OBTAINING IN THE CASES CONSIDERED BY HIM IN ARRIVING AT DECISION A-60370, DATED JUNE 4, 1935. (SEE, IN THIS CONNECTION DECISION A-60370 DATED JANUARY 11, 1936 AND A-71773 DATED MAY 29, 1936.)

3.MR. WILFLEY HAD BEEN EMPLOYED SINCE NOVEMBER 23, 1931, BY THE KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI, ENGINEER DISTRICT AND WAS DIRECTED IN TRAVEL ORDERS DATED JUNE 30, 1933, WHILE SERVING AS SURVEYMAN AT $1,620 PER ANNUM, TO PROCEED TO GLASGOW, MONTANA, FOR PERFORMANCE OF TEMPORARY DUTY. THE FORT PECK PROJECT WAS APPROVED UNDER DATE OF OCTOBER 14, 1933, AND ON DECEMBER 1, 1933, THE FORT PECK ENGINEER DISTRICT, WITH HEADQUARTERS AT GLASGOW, MONTANA, WAS CREATED. WITH THE APPROVAL OF THE FORT PECK PROJECT AND THE CREATION OF THE FORT PECK ENGINEER DISTRICT, IT BECAME NECESSARY TO IMMEDIATELY PERFECT AN ORGANIZATION OF PERSONNEL QUALIFIED TO PERFORM CERTAIN DESIGNATED TECHNICAL DUTIES. ALTHOUGH MR. WILFLEY WAS SERVING AS SURVEYMAN, HE POSSESSED THE QUALIFICATIONS OF AN INSPECTOR. THEREFORE, THE CHIEF OF ENGINEERS, U.S. ARMY, WASHINGTON, D.C., IN A LETTER DATED JANUARY 11, 1934, REQUESTED THE SECRETARY OF WAR TO AUTHORIZE THE TRANSFER OF MR. WILFLEY FROM HIS STATION, KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI, TO GLASGOW, MONTANA, AS AN INSPECTOR, SP-6. $2,000 PER ANNUM. UNDER DATE OF JANUARY 12, 1934, THE SECRETARY OF WAR AUTHORIZED THE REQUESTED TRANSFER AND PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION OF MR. WILFLEY.

4. ON JANUARY 12, 1934, THE DATE OF APPROVAL OF THE ABOVE-MENTIONED TRANSFER AND PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION, MR. WILFLEY WAS PERFORMING TEMPORARY DUTY IN AND NEAR GLASGOW, MONTANA, UNDER TRAVEL ORDERS DATED JUNE 30, 1933, ISSUED BY THE DISTRICT ENGINEER, KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI, ENGINEER DISTRICT. THESE ORDERS WERE REVOKED BY THE ISSUING OFFICER EFFECTIVE AS OF MIDNIGHT, JANUARY 11, 1934. IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE PROCEDURE THEN OBTAINING IN THE ENGINEER DEPARTMENT, MR. WILFLEY WAS PLACED IN A "FURLOUGH" STATUS EFFECTIVE AT THE CLOSE OF WORK ON JANUARY 15, 1934, BY THE KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI, ENGINEER DISTRICT, AND "REEMPLOYED" BY THE FORT PECK ENGINEER DISTRICT EFFECTIVE JANUARY 15, 1934. MR. WILFLEY WAS PAID FOR THE PERIOD JANUARY 16-31, 1934, ON VOUCHER 494 FEBRUARY 1934, ACCOUNTS OF C. N. IRY, CAPTAIN (NOW MAJOR) C.E., SYMBOL 95,750. SINCE MR. WILFLEY WAS AT GLASGOW, MONTANA, PERFORMING TEMPORARY DUTY UNDER ORDERS ISSUED BY COMPETENT AUTHORITY, THE ONLY ITEMS OF EXPENSE IN CONNECTION WITH HIS PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION WERE THE PACKING AND CRATING OF HIS HOUSEHOLD GOODS AND THE TRANSPORTATION THEREOF TO GLASGOW, MONTANA. PAYMENT FOR THESE ITEMS WAS MADE ON THE FOLLOWING VOUCHERS:

CHART

MONTH AND APPROPRIA-

VOUCHER YEAR ACCOUNTS SYMBOL TION FOR AMOUNT

810 OCTOBER 1934 JOHN B. HUGHES 95781 N.I.R. PACKING $90.00

AND

CRATING

5052 MARCH 1935 JOHN B. HUGHES 95781 N.I.R. FREIGHT 96.74

186.74

5. AS STATED IN PARAGRAPH 2 ABOVE, THIS OFFICE ASSUMED THAT ALL TRANSFERS TO THE FORT PECK PROJECT WOULD BE SUBJECT TO DISALLOWANCE BY THE GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE, IN VIEW OF DECISION OF THE COMPTROLLER GENERAL A-60370, DATED JUNE 4, 1935, AND PROMPT STEPS WERE TAKEN TO PROTECT THE DISBURSING OFFICERS CONCERNED BY MAKING COLLECTION OF ALL POSSIBLE ITEMS. MR. WILFLEY HAD LEFT THE SERVICE PRIOR TO RECEIPT OF THE ABOVE-MENTIONED DECISION, AND HE WAS CONTACTED WITH A VIEW TO REIMBURSING THE GOVERNMENT FOR EXPENSE INCURRED IN CONNECTION WITH HIS PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION, WHICH IT WAS ANTICIPATED WOULD LATER BE SUBJECT TO EXCEPTION OR DISALLOWANCE BY THE GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE. THE TOTAL AMOUNT INVOLVED WAS COLLECTED DURING THE PERIOD FROM DECEMBER 1935 TO SEPTEMBER 1936, AND EACH PARTIAL PAYMENT WAS PLACED IN THE SPECIAL DEPOSIT ACCOUNT PENDING RECEIPT OF DISALLOWANCE, WHEN IT WAS INTENDED TO CREDIT THE APPROPRIATION INVOLVED AND FURNISH THE GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE WITH ACCOUNTING EVIDENCE OF THE COLLECTION.

6. IT APPEARS THAT THE CIRCUMSTANCES IN THIS CASE ARE MATERIALLY DIFFERENT FROM THOSE RESULTING IN DECISION A-60370 DATED JUNE 4, 1935, AND THAT THIS IS AN ACTUAL PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION, THE EXPENSE IN CONNECTION WITH WHICH IS PROPERLY PAYABLE FROM GOVERNMENT FUNDS. FURTHER, IT DOES NOT APPEAR PROPER TO TRANSFER THESE FUNDS NOW HELD IN SPECIAL DEPOSIT ACCOUNT TO THE CREDIT OF THE APPROPRIATION FROM WHICH THE VOUCHERS DESCRIBED IN PARAGRAPH 4 ABOVE, WERE PAID,FOR THE REASON THAT THE COLLECTIONS ARE BELIEVED TO HAVE BEEN MADE ERRONEOUSLY. HOWEVER, THIS OFFICE IS RELUCTANT TO REFUND THESE COLLECTIONS UNTIL IT IS DEFINITELY KNOWN THAT THIS WILL BE CONSIDERED AN ACTUAL TRANSFER AND PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION.

7. IT IS RECOMMENDED THAT THE AMOUNTS NOW HELD IN SPECIAL DEPOSITS, AS OUTLINED ON THE ACCOMPANYING VOUCHER, AND REPRESENTING COLLECTIONS FROM MR. JOHN S. WILFLEY TO COVER ANTICIPATED DISALLOWANCES TO VOUCHERS DESCRIBED IN PARAGRAPH 4 ABOVE, BE AUTHORIZED FOR REFUNDMENT TO THE DEPOSITOR.

EXAMINATION OF PAY ROLLS ON FILE IN THIS OFFICE DISCLOSES THAT MR. WILFLEY WAS PAID AS SURVEYMAN, SP-4, $1,620 PER ANNUM, FOR THE PERIOD JANUARY 1 TO 15, 1934, ON VOUCHER 2069 OF THE JANUARY 1934 ACCOUNT OF FIRST LT. H. O. PAXSON, CORPS OF ENGINEERS, AND AS SURVEYMAN, SP-6, $2,000 PER ANNUM, FOR THE PERIOD JANUARY 16 TO 31, 1934, WITH THE REMARK "REEMPLOYED 1/16/34," ON VOUCHER 494 OF THE FEBRUARY 1934 ACCOUNT OF CAPT. C. N. IRY, CORPS OF ENGINEERS.

THE DECISION OF JUNE 4, 1935, A-60370, 14 COMP. GEN. 871, REFERRED TO IN THE LETTER OF THE ACTING DISTRICT ENGINEER, HELD THAT CERTAIN EMPLOYEES OF THE ENGINEER DEPARTMENT WHO WERE INVOLUNTARILY FURLOUGHED FROM THEIR REGULAR POSITIONS IN VARIOUS ENGINEER DISTRICTS AND GIVEN TEMPORARY APPOINTMENTS IN THE FORT PECK DISTRICT AT HIGHER SALARIES PAYABLE FROM AN ALLOTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS FUNDS MUST PLACE THEMSELVES AT THEIR PLACE OF DUTY UNDER THE NEW APPOINTMENT AT THEIR OWN EXPENSE, AND THAT PAYMENTS MADE FROM GOVERNMENT FUNDS OF THE TRAVEL EXPENSES OF THE EMPLOYEES IN SUCH CIRCUMSTANCES WERE UNAUTHORIZED. SAID DECISION IS, IN PART--- 14 COMP. GEN. 874--- AS FOLLOWS:

AS IT WOULD NOT HAVE BEEN POSSIBLE TO HAVE GRANTED THE INCREASES IN COMPENSATION TO THESE EMPLOYEES HAD THEY BEEN CONTINUED IN THE POSITIONS HELD BY THEM BEFORE THE TRANSFER, SUCH INCREASES BEING PROHIBITED BY SECTION 7 OF THE ACT OF MARCH 3, 1933, THE TRAVEL TO GLASGOW CAN BE CONSIDERED ONLY AS TRAVEL INCIDENT TO REPORTING TO THEIR DUTY STATION UNDER NEW APPOINTMENTS. SUCH NEW APPOINTMENT OR TEMPORARY EMPLOYMENT AT INCREASED SALARIES PAYABLE FROM ALLOTMENTS FROM THE APPROPRIATION FOR CARRYING OUT THE NATIONAL INDUSTRIAL RECOVERY ACT WHILE THE EMPLOYEE IS INVOLUNTARILY FURLOUGHED FROM HIS PERMANENT POSITION HAS BEEN HELD PERMISSIBLE, A-50707, AUGUST 30, 1933; AND A-50831, SEPTEMBER 9, 1933.

DECISIONS OF JANUARY 11, 1936, A-60370, AND MAY 29, 1936, A-71773, RECOGNIZED EXCEPTIONS IN THE CASES OF TWO EMPLOYEES, TO THE GENERAL RULE SET FORTH IN 14 COMP. GEN. 871, SINCE THE FACTS SHOWN IN THOSE TWO CASES ESTABLISHED THAT THE CHANGE OF THE EMPLOYEES' STATUS CONSTITUTED A TRANSFER BETWEEN PERMANENT DUTY STATIONS, PROPERLY AUTHORIZED IN ADVANCE BY THE SECRETARY OF WAR WITH AUTHORIZATION FOR THE PAYMENT OF TRAVEL EXPENSES AND PER DIEM. HOWEVER, IN NEITHER OF THOSE CASES HAD THE EMPLOYEE RECEIVED ANY ADVANCE IN SALARY INCIDENT TO HIS TRANSFER TO THE FORT PECK DISTRICT, OVER THE SALARY RECEIVED UNDER HIS APPOINTMENT IN ANOTHER DISTRICT IMMEDIATELY PRECEDING SUCH TRANSFER.

ON THE OTHER HAND, IN THE CASE OF MR. WILFLEY, THE FURLOUGH FROM THE KANSAS CITY, MO., DISTRICT AND REEMPLOYMENT IN THE FORT PECK DISTRICT WAS ACCOMPANIED BY A CHANGE IN GRADE FROM SP-4 TO SP-6 AND A CORRESPONDING INCREASE IN SALARY FROM $1,620 TO $2,000 PER ANNUM. IN THESE CIRCUMSTANCES, UNDER THE GENERAL RULE SET FORTH ABOVE, 14 COMP. GEN. 871, THE REEMPLOYMENT AT FORT PECK CAN ONLY BE CONSIDERED AS A NEW APPOINTMENT.

WHILE IT IS REPORTED THAT THIS EMPLOYEE WAS ON TEMPORARY DUTY AT FORT PECK OR GLASGOW, MONT., UNTIL JANUARY 11, 1934, UNDER TRAVEL ORDERS ISSUED JUNE 30, 1933, BEFORE THE APPROVAL OF THE FORT PECK PROJECT, THE EXPENSES OF PACKING, CRATING, AND SHIPPING HIS HOUSEHOLD GOODS FROM ROLLA, MO., TO WIOTA, MONT., AS PAID ON VOUCHERS 810 OF THE OCTOBER 1934, AND 5052 OF THE MARCH 1935 ACCOUNTS OF CAPT. JOHN B. HUGHES, CORPS OF ENGINEERS, WERE NOT INCURRED INCIDENT TO SUCH TEMPORARY DUTY BUT WERE INCIDENT TO THE FURLOUGH AND REEMPLOYMENT EFFECTIVE JANUARY 16, 1934. SUCH EXPENSES BEING INCIDENT TO THE NEW APPOINTMENT AT FORT PECK WERE PERSONAL TO THE EMPLOYEE AND THERE WAS NO AUTHORITY FOR PAYMENT THEREOF FROM GOVERNMENT FUNDS.

ACCORDINGLY, THE AMOUNT OF $186.74 REPORTED HELD IN SPECIAL DEPOSIT SHOULD BE DEPOSITED TO THE CREDIT OF THE APPROPRIATION UNDER WHICH VOUCHERS 810 AND 5052, SUPRA, WERE PAID. PAYMENT THEREON NOT BEING AUTHORIZED THE REFUND VOUCHER IN FAVOR OF MR. WILFLEY WILL BE RETAINED IN THE FILES OF THIS OFFICE.