A-90524, NOVEMBER 26, 1937, 17 COMP. GEN. 445

A-90524: Nov 26, 1937

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GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE INDIVIDUAL CLAIM STATUS AS PRECEDENT WHEN AN EXECUTIVE ORDER CLOSES AN OFFICE AND EXCUSES EMPLOYEES FROM DUTY AN ENTIRE DAY AND NO WORK IS PERFORMED ON THAT DAY AND THE DAY IS NOT CHARGED TO ANNUAL LEAVE. PER DIEM EMPLOYEES ARE NOT ENTITLED TO COMPENSATION FOR THAT DAY. THEY ARE ENTITLED TO A FULL DAY'S COMPENSATION. ALTHOUGH A SCHEDULE OF WAGES PURSUANT TO WHICH EMPLOYEES IN THE SEVERAL TRADES AND CRAFTS OR SIMILAR OCCUPATIONS ARE PAID MEASURES THE COMPENSATION ON AN HOURLY BASIS. THE EMPLOYEES ARE NEVERTHELESS REGARDED AS PER DIEM EMPLOYEES WITHIN THE MEANING OF THE HOLIDAY STATUTES. EMPLOYEES OF THE PANAMA CANAL ABOVE THE GRADE OF LABORER WHOSE COMPENSATION IS FIXED BY THE HOUR OR DAY AND WHO ARE APPOINTED OR EMPLOYED FOR A SUBSTANTIALLY CONTINUOUS PERIOD AND ARE REQUIRED TO WORK A CERTAIN NUMBER OF HOURS PER DAY MAY BE REGARDED AS PER DIEM EMPLOYEES AND ENTITLED TO A FULL DAY'S COMPENSATION FOR SEPTEMBER 17.

A-90524, NOVEMBER 26, 1937, 17 COMP. GEN. 445

COMPENSATION - PER HOUR AND PER DIEM EMPLOYEES - EXECUTIVE ORDERS HOLIDAYS - PANAMA CANAL EMPLOYEE'S STATUS, AND GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE INDIVIDUAL CLAIM STATUS AS PRECEDENT WHEN AN EXECUTIVE ORDER CLOSES AN OFFICE AND EXCUSES EMPLOYEES FROM DUTY AN ENTIRE DAY AND NO WORK IS PERFORMED ON THAT DAY AND THE DAY IS NOT CHARGED TO ANNUAL LEAVE, PER DIEM EMPLOYEES ARE NOT ENTITLED TO COMPENSATION FOR THAT DAY, BUT WHERE AN EXECUTIVE ORDER ONLY SHORTENS A WORKDAY, AND PER DIEM EMPLOYEES WORK ON THAT DAY THE FULL TIME FIXED BY THE ORDER AS THE LENGTH OF THE WORKDAY, THEY ARE ENTITLED TO A FULL DAY'S COMPENSATION. ALTHOUGH A SCHEDULE OF WAGES PURSUANT TO WHICH EMPLOYEES IN THE SEVERAL TRADES AND CRAFTS OR SIMILAR OCCUPATIONS ARE PAID MEASURES THE COMPENSATION ON AN HOURLY BASIS, THE EMPLOYEES ARE NEVERTHELESS REGARDED AS PER DIEM EMPLOYEES WITHIN THE MEANING OF THE HOLIDAY STATUTES, AND THE RULES STATED THEREUNDER, IF APPOINTED OR EMPLOYED FOR A SUBSTANTIALLY CONTINUOUS PERIOD AND REQUIRED TO WORK A CERTAIN NUMBER OF HOURS PER DAY. EMPLOYEES OF THE PANAMA CANAL ABOVE THE GRADE OF LABORER WHOSE COMPENSATION IS FIXED BY THE HOUR OR DAY AND WHO ARE APPOINTED OR EMPLOYED FOR A SUBSTANTIALLY CONTINUOUS PERIOD AND ARE REQUIRED TO WORK A CERTAIN NUMBER OF HOURS PER DAY MAY BE REGARDED AS PER DIEM EMPLOYEES AND ENTITLED TO A FULL DAY'S COMPENSATION FOR SEPTEMBER 17, 1937--- ANNIVERSARY OF SIGNING OF THE CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED STATES--- IF WORK WAS PERFORMED ON THAT DAY FROM THE USUAL BEGINNING TIME UNTIL THE TIME FOR CLOSING PURSUANT TO THE TERMS OF EXECUTIVE ORDER OF AUGUST 31, 1937. A GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE CLAIMS SETTLEMENT OF AN INDIVIDUAL CLAIM IS NOT TO BE REGARDED AS NECESSARILY CONTROLLING THE DISPOSITION OF ANY OTHER CLAIM OR AS A PRECEDENT STATING A RULE OF LAW FOR THE GENERAL GUIDANCE OF ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICERS OF THE GOVERNMENT.

ACTING COMPTROLLER GENERAL ELLIOTT TO THE GOVERNOR, THE PANAMA CANAL, NOVEMBER 26, 1937:

YOUR LETTER OF NOVEMBER 15, 1937, IS AS FOLLOWS:

YOUR DECISION IS REQUESTED AS TO WHETHER THE SO-CALLED HOURLY EMPLOYEES OF THE PANAMA CANAL ABOVE THE GRADE OF LABORER MAY BE PAID BY THE PANAMA CANAL WITHOUT CHARGE TO LEAVE FOR THE TIME EXCUSED ON SEPTEMBER 17, 1937, WHILE PANAMA CANAL SHOPS AND OTHER ACTIVITIES WERE CLOSED PURSUANT TO EXECUTIVE ORDER OF AUGUST 31, 1937, AND THE GOVERNOR'S CIRCULAR OF SEPTEMBER 15, 1937.

THE GOVERNOR'S CIRCULAR READS AS FOLLOWS:

"TO ALL CONCERNED:

"OBSERVANCE OF SEPTEMBER 17, 1937, AS ANNIVERSARY OF SIGNING OF CONSTITUTION

"1. THE FOLLOWING EXECUTIVE ORDER WAS ISSUED BY THE PRESIDENT ON AUGUST 31, 1937:

" "BY VIRTUE OF THE AUTHORITY VESTED IN ME AS PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES IT IS HEREBY ORDERED AS FOLLOWS:

" "1. ON FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 17, 1937, THE ONE HUNDRED FIFTIETH ANNIVERSARY OF THE SIGNING OF THE CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED STATES, THE SEVERAL EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENTS, INDEPENDENT ESTABLISHMENTS, AND OTHER GOVERNMENTAL AGENCIES IN THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, INCLUDING THE GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE AND THE NAVY YARD AND NAVAL STATIONS, SHALL BE CLOSED AT 1 O-CLOCK .M., OR AT SUCH OTHER HOUR AS THEY, UNDER THEIR REGULATIONS, REGULARLY CLOSE ON SATURDAYS; AND ALL EMPLOYEES IN THE FEDERAL SERVICE IN THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA AND IN THE FIELD SERVICE OF THE EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENTS, INDEPENDENT ESTABLISHMENTS,AND OTHER AGENCIES OF THE GOVERNMENT, EXCEPT THOSE WHO MAY FOR SPECIAL PUBLIC REASONS BE EXCLUDED FROM THE PROVISIONS OF THIS ORDER BY THE HEADS OF THEIR RESPECTIVE DEPARTMENTS, ESTABLISHMENTS, OR AGENCIES, OR THOSE WHOSE ABSENCE FROM DUTY WOULD BE INCONSISTENT WITH THE PROVISIONS OF EXISTING LAW, SHALL BE EXCUSED FROM DUTY ON THAT DAY AFTER THE HOUR AT WHICH THE DEPARTMENTS, ESTABLISHMENTS, OR AGENCIES IN WHICH THEY WORK ARE CLOSED IN ACCORDANCE WITH THIS ORDER.

" "2. FOR THE PURPOSE OF THIS ORDER, IN ESTABLISHMENTS OR AGENCIES IN WHICH THE EMPLOYEES WORK IN SHIFTS SUCH EMPLOYEES SHALL, SUBJECT TO THE FOREGOING PROVISIONS, BE EXCUSED FROM DUTY AFTER FOUR HOURS OF WORK ON THE SAID DAY.

" "FRANKLIN D. ROOSEVELT.

" "THE WHITE HOUSE, AUGUST 31, 1937.'

"2. THE ABOVE-QUOTED ORDER APPLIES TO THE PANAMA CANAL AND PANAMA RAILROAD ORGANIZATIONS AND WILL BE OBSERVED AS FAR AS THE NEEDS OF THE SERVICE WILL PERMIT. HOWEVER, UNDER THE LAWS APPLYING TO THIS SERVICE, THE TIME INVOLVED CAN NOT BE CLASSED AS LEGAL HOLIDAY TIME, BUT AS WORKING TIME WITH EXECUTIVE DIRECTION TO EXCUSE FROM DUTY.

"3. ALL PANAMA CANAL AND PANAMA RAILROAD OFFICES, SHOPS, AND OTHER ACTIVITIES WILL BE CLOSED SO FAR AS PRACTICABLE AT 1 P.M., FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 17TH, EXCEPT SUCH ACTIVITIES AS ARE REQUIRED IN THE PUBLIC INTEREST TO CONTINUE IN OPERATION.

"4. EMPLOYEES WHOSE SERVICES CAN BE SPARED, MAY, IF DESIRED, BE EXCUSED AT THE CLOSE OF THE MORNING WORKING PERIOD AND COVER THE AFTERNOON PERIOD WITH THE USUAL REQUEST FOR LEAVE (FORM 484).

"5. EMPLOYEES WORKING ON SHIFTS WHOSE SERVICES ARE NOT NECESSARY IN THE PUBLIC INTEREST WILL BE EXCUSED AFTER 4 HOURS WORK.

"6. DECISION ON PAYMENT FOR THE TIME OFF UNDER THIS EXECUTIVE ORDER WILL BE A MATTER OF LAW AND THE INTERPRETATION OF THE ORDER BY LEGAL AUTHORITY. IT IS NOT THOUGHT THAT HOURLY EMPLOYEES CAN BE PAID EITHER HERE OR IN THE UNITED STATES EXCEPT FOR TIME WORKED. HOURLY EMPLOYEES MAY, IF AGREEABLE TO DEPARTMENT OR DIVISION HEADS WORK 4 HOURS AND COVER THE OTHER 4 HOURS BY LEAVE ORDER.

"7. THIS ORDER OF THE PRESIDENT IS FOR THE PURPOSE OF CELEBRATING A NATIONAL ANNIVERSARY AND IS CONSIDERED MANDATORY SO FAR AS THE PUBLIC SERVICE PERMITS.

"C. S. RIDLEY, GOVERNOR.'

THE FOLLOWING IS QUOTED FROM THE STATEMENT OF THE GOVERNOR OF THE PANAMA CANAL RELATIVE TO THE MATTER:

"THE PRIMARY REASON FOR INCLUDING IN MY LETTER THE CONDITION SET FORTH IN PARAGRAPH 6 THAT PAYMENT FOR TIME OFF WOULD BE A MATTER OF LAW AND INTERPRETATION OF THE ORDER BY LEGAL AUTHORITY, WAS THE ACTION OF THE CLAIMS DIVISION OF THE GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE IN DISALLOWING THE CLAIM OF E. W. DOWELL (CLAIM NO. 0445163) AN EMPLOYEE OF THE PANAMA CANAL, FOR FOUR HOURS' HALF HOLIDAY PAY ON NOVEMBER 29, 1933, UNDER EXECUTIVE ORDER DATED NOVEMBER 18, 1933. THE DISALLOWANCE READS IN PART AS FOLLOWS:

" "THE EXECUTIVE ORDER OF NOVEMBER 18, 1933, DECLARING A HALF HOLIDAY ON NOVEMBER 29, 1933, DID NOT APPLY TO EMPLOYEES OF THE PANAMA CANAL WHOSE COMPENSATION WAS ON A PER HOUR BASIS.'

"GENERALLY SPEAKING, ALL ALIEN EMPLOYEES OF THE PANAMA CANAL RECEIVE A WAGE OF UP TO 40 CENTS PER HOUR AND THEY ARE TERMED "LABORERS.' QUESTION ARISES AS REGARDS THESE ALIEN HOURLY EMPLOYEES AS ADMITTEDLY THEY ARE NOT ENTITLED TO COMPENSATION FOR TIME NOT WORKED. HOWEVER, IT IS SUBMITTED THAT THE HOURLY EMPLOYEES OF THE PANAMA CANAL ABOVE THE GRADE OF LABORER ARE IN FACT PER DIEM EMPLOYEES IN THAT THEY ARE EMPLOYED ON A PERMANENT AND CONTINUOUS BASIS AND ARE PAID A CERTAIN AMOUNT FOR EACH DAY BASED ON A FIXED NUMBER OF HOURS AND A FIXED RATE PER HOUR. IN 8 COMP. DEC. 235 IT WAS HELD, HAVING REFERENCE TO EMPLOYEES OF THE GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE WHO RECEIVED PAY "BY THE DAY OR HOUR AND WHO WERE CONTINUOUSLY AND PERMANENTLY EMPLOYED," ON OCCASION OF SUSPENSION OF WORK BY ORDER OF THE PRESIDENT ON ACCOUNT OF THE DEATH OF THE LATE PRESIDENT MCKINLEY, THAT---

" "APPLYING THESE DEFINITIONS TO THE EMPLOYEES OF YOUR OFFICE MENTIONED IN YOUR LETTER, IT IS EVIDENT THAT THOSE RECEIVING ANNUAL SALARIES ARE ENTITLED TO BE PAID ON THOSE DAYS; THAT THOSE MENTIONED IN YOUR SECOND, THIRD, AND FOURTH CLASSIFICATIONS ARE ENTITLED TO RECEIVE THEIR DAILY WAGES FOR SAID DAYS, IF THEY ARE PAID A STATED SUM FOR A DAY'S WORK, OR IF BY THE REGULATIONS OF YOUR OFFICE THOSE WHO ARE PAID BY THE HOUR ARE REQUIRED TO WORK A GIVEN NUMBER OF HOURS A DAY AS A MINIMUM NUMBER. OTHERWISE THOSE WHO ARE PAID BY THE HOUR CANNOT BE SAID TO BE PER DIEM EMPLOYEES. THERE WOULD BE NO BASIS UPON WHICH TO COMPUTE THEIR PAY FOR A DAY THEY DID NOT WORK.'

"IN VIEW OF THE FOREGOING, THE QUESTION PRESENTS ITSELF AS TO WHETHER THE HOURLY EMPLOYEES OF THE PANAMA CANAL ABOVE THE GRADE OF LABORER ARE NOT IN FACT PER DIEM EMPLOYEES AND AS SUCH ARE ENTITLED TO COMPENSATION FOR THE HALF-HOLIDAY IN QUESTION.'

DECISION IN THE MATTER AT AN EARLY DATE WILL BE APPRECIATED.

IN DECISION OF DECEMBER 30, 1936, 16 COMP. GEN. 625, 627, IT WAS HELD AS FOLLOWS:

AN EXECUTIVE ORDER CANNOT PURPORT TO GRANT COMPENSATION TO WHICH EMPLOYEES ARE NOT OTHERWISE ENTITLED BY LAW UNDER THEIR APPOINTMENTS OR CONTRACTS OF EMPLOYMENT, AND THE EXECUTIVE ORDER IN THIS INSTANCE DOES NOT PURPORT TO DO SO. IT OPERATES TO SHORTEN THE WORKDAY FOR FEDERAL AND DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA EMPLOYEES ON DECEMBER 24, 1936, EXCEPT FOR THOSE WHOSE SERVICES CANNOT BE SPARED, AND MAKES DECEMBER 26, 1936, A NON- WORKDAY IN THE FIELD AND JANUARY 2, 1937, A NON-WORKDAY BOTH IN THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA AND IN THE FIELD.

IF THE EMPLOYEES TO WHOM YOU REFER ARE REGULARLY PAID ON THE BASIS OF THE DAY AND NOT ON THE BASIS OF THE HOUR WHEN ACTUALLY EMPLOYED, A FULL DAY'S COMPENSATION MAY BE PAID FOR DECEMBER 24, 1936, IF WORK IS PERFORMED ON THAT DAY FROM THE USUAL TIME FOR BEGINNING WORK UNTIL 1 O CLOCK P.M. COMPARE 1 COMP. GEN. 210. IN COMPUTING LEAVE OF ABSENCE WITH OR WITHOUT PAY THE EXISTING RULES APPLICABLE TO THE SHORT DAY ON SATURDAY ARE CONTROLLING WITH RESPECT TO DECEMBER 24, 1936.

THE RULE MAY BE CLARIFIED BY STATING THAT WHEN AN EXECUTIVE ORDER CLOSES AN OFFICE AND EXCUSES EMPLOYEES FROM DUTY AN ENTIRE DAY AND NO WORK IS PERFORMED ON THAT DAY AND THE DAY IS NOT CHARGED TO ANNUAL LEAVE, PER DIEM EMPLOYEES ARE NOT ENTITLED TO COMPENSATION (8 COMP. DEC. 219; 22 ID. 425; 2 COMP. GEN. 366; 8 ID. 558; 10 ID. 327; 17 ID. 298), BUT WHERE AN EXECUTIVE ORDER ONLY SHORTENS A WORKDAY AND PER DIEM EMPLOYEES WORK ON THAT DAY THE FULL TIME FIXED BY THE EXECUTIVE ORDER AS THE LENGTH OF THE WORKDAY, THEY ARE ENTITLED TO A FULL DAY'S COMPENSATION (8 COMP. DEC. 235; 16 COMP. GEN. 625).

A PER DIEM EMPLOYEE IS ONE WHO IS EMPLOYED BY THE DAY AND PAID A CERTAIN SUM AS A DAY'S WAGES. IT HAS BEEN GENERALLY RECOGNIZED THAT, ALTHOUGH THE SCHEDULE OF WAGES PURSUANT TO WHICH EMPLOYEES IN THE SEVERAL TRADES AND CRAFTS OR SIMILAR OCCUPATIONS ARE PAID, MEASURES THE COMPENSATION ON AN HOURLY BASIS, NEVERTHELESS THEY ARE REGARDED AS PER DIEM EMPLOYEES WITHIN THE MEANING OF THE HOLIDAY STATUTES AND THE RULES STATED THEREUNDER IF APPOINTED OR EMPLOYED FOR A SUBSTANTIALLY CONTINUOUS PERIOD AND THEY ARE REQUIRED TO WORK A CERTAIN NUMBER OF HOURS PER DAY (8 COMP. DEC. 235). THIS BASIS CERTAIN EMPLOYEES OF THE GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE AND OF THE NAVY YARDS, ETC., WHOSE COMPENSATION IS MEASURED BY THE HOUR IN THE SCHEDULE OF WAGES APPLICABLE TO THEM AND WHO ARE APPOINTED OR EMPLOYED FOR SUBSTANTIALLY CONTINUOUS PERIODS AND FOR REGULAR TOURS OF DAILY DUTY, ARE REGARDED AS PER DIEM EMPLOYEES. IN FACT, THE HOLIDAY STATUTE OF JANUARY 6, 1885, 23 STAT. 516, SPECIFICALLY CLASSIFIES THEM AS PER DIEM EMPLOYEES. (SEE 14 COMP. GEN. 818, 820.)

IN DECISION OF APRIL 11, 1923, A.D. 7586, TO THE GOVERNOR OF THE PANAMA CANAL, WHEREIN WAS CONSIDERED THE STATUS OF EMPLOYEES OF THE PANAMA CANAL UNDER THE TERMS OF JOINT RESOLUTION OF MARCH 3, 1923, 42 STAT. 1444, DIRECTING THAT PER DIEM EMPLOYEES BE EXCUSED FROM DUTY ON NOVEMBER 11, 1921, AND ALLOWED PAY FOR THAT DAY, THE COMPTROLLER GENERAL STATED AS FOLLOWS:

IT MAY BE STATED AS A GENERAL PROPOSITION THAT THE TERM "PER DIEM EMPLOYEES" DOES NOT INCLUDE EMPLOYEES ENGAGED BY THE HOUR, BUT IT IS UNDERSTOOD FROM YOUR SUBMISSION THAT THE EMPLOYEES REFERRED TO ARE EMPLOYEES ABOVE THE GRADE OF LABORER APPOINTED WITH RATES OF PAY PER HOUR SUCH AS ARE REFERRED TO IN THE EXECUTIVE ORDER OF FEBRUARY 2, 1914, NO. 1888, WHICH READS:

"EMPLOYEES ABOVE THE GRADE OF LABORER, APPOINTED WITH RATES OF PAY PER HOUR OR PER DAY, WILL NOT BE EMPLOYED OVER EIGHT HOURS IN ANY ONE CALENDAR DAY, EXCEPT IN CASE OF EMERGENCY. THE TIME SUCH EMPLOYEES WORK OVER EIGHT HOURS IN ONE CALENDAR DAY, AND TIME WORKED ON SUNDAYS AND REGULARLY AUTHORIZED HOLIDAYS, INCLUDING JANUARY 1ST, FEBRUARY 22ND, MAY 30TH, JULY 4TH, LABOR DAY, THANKSGIVING DAY, AND DECEMBER 25TH, SHALL BE CONSIDERED OVERTIME FOR WHICH TIME AND ONE-HALF WILL BE ALLOWED. SUCH EMPLOYEES WHO WORK ON THE DAYS PRIOR AND SUBSEQUENT TO THE HOLIDAYS SPECIFICALLY NAMED ABOVE WILL BE ALLOWED THEIR REGULAR PAY FOR EIGHT HOURS FOR SUCH DAYS, IN ADDITION TO PAY FOR ANY WORK PERFORMED.'

SUCH EMPLOYEES--- THAT IS TO SAY, EMPLOYEES ABOVE THE GRADE OF LABORER--- REGULARLY APPOINTED FOR CONTINUOUS SERVICE WITH RATES OF PAY PER HOUR AND WHO ARE REGULARLY REQUIRED TO WORK EIGHT HOURS A DAY MAY BE REGARDED AS PER DIEM EMPLOYEES WITHIN THE MEANING OF THE JOINT RESOLUTION AND MAY BE PAID THE EQUIVALENT OF EIGHT HOURS' PAY FOR NOVEMBER 11, 1921, IF EXCUSED FROM WORK ON SAID DAY, PROVIDED THEY WERE IN A PAY STATUS ON THE DAYS PRIOR AND SUBSEQUENT TO SAID DAY.

THE COMPENSATION OF EMPLOYEES OF THE PANAMA CANAL ABOVE THE GRADE OF LABORER IN THE SEVERAL TRADES AND CRAFTS HAVE BEEN FIXED GENERALLY ON THE BASIS OF WAGE RATES FOR SIMILAR OCCUPATIONS IN THE NAVY YARDS, ARSENALS, ETC., IN THE CONTINENTAL UNITED STATES, PLUS THE DIFFERENTIAL AUTHORIZED BY LAW, AND THEY HAVE BEEN HELD SUBJECT TO THE 40-HOUR-WEEK STATUTE.

IN VIEW OF THE PRECEDENTS HEREINBEFORE MENTIONED, I HAVE TO ADVISE THAT EMPLOYEES OF THE PANAMA CANAL ABOVE THE GRADE OF LABORER WHOSE COMPENSATION IS FIXED BY THE HOUR OR DAY AND WHO ARE APPOINTED OR EMPLOYED FOR A SUBSTANTIALLY CONTINUOUS PERIOD AND ARE REQUIRED TO WORK A CERTAIN NUMBER OF HOURS PER DAY MAY BE REGARDED AS PER DIEM EMPLOYEES AND ENTITLED TO BE PAID A FULL DAY'S COMPENSATION FOR SEPTEMBER 17, 1937, IF WORK WAS PERFORMED ON THAT DAY FROM THE USUAL BEGINNING TIME UNTIL THE TIME OF CLOSING PURSUANT TO THE TERMS OF EXECUTIVE ORDER OF AUGUST 31, 1937.

REFERENCE IS MADE IN YOUR LETTER TO A CLAIMS SETTLEMENT MADE BY THIS OFFICE IN 1934, AS THE PRIMARY REASON FOR THIS SUBMISSION. YOU ARE ADVISED THAT A CLAIMS SETTLEMENT OF AN INDIVIDUAL CLAIM IS NOT TO BE REGARDED AS NECESSARILY CONTROLLING THE DISPOSITION OF ANY OTHER CLAIM OR AS A PRECEDENT STATING A RULE OF LAW FOR THE GENERAL GUIDANCE OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICERS OF THE GOVERNMENT.