A-9846, JULY 13, 1925, 5 COMP. GEN. 25

A-9846: Jul 13, 1925

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WHERE FOR ANY REASON IT IS NOT INCLUDED IN SUCH FINAL ADJUSTMENT OR SETTLEMENT. THE UNITED STATES IS NOT OBLIGATED TO LIQUIDATE THE INDEBTEDNESS AND IT BECOMES A MATTER BETWEEN THOSE PRESENTING SUCH CLAIM AND THE REPRESENTATIVES OF THE DECEASED. WHEREIN WAS DENIED YOUR CLAIM FOR PAYMENT OF $23.45. WAS PAID $98.22. YOUR CLAIM FOR PAYMENT TO YOU OF THE MESS INDEBTEDNESS WAS DENIED ON THE GROUND THAT THERE WAS NO AUTHORITY OF LAW FOR CHARGING SAME TO THE AMOUNT ALLOWED IN THE SETTLEMENT. - POST MESSES ARE ESTABLISHED. ARE CLASSED AS GOVERNMENT AGENCIES. AS STATES IN PART: * * * AND THE COMMANDING OFFICER WILL TAKE THE NECESSARY ACTION TO CAUSE SUCH INDEBTEDNESS TO BE PAID BY THE MEMBERS IN PERSON OR TO CAUSE THE AMOUNTS TO BE DEDUCTED BY THE FINANCE OFFICER FROM ANY PAY DUE OR TO BECOME DUE SUCH MEMBERS.

A-9846, JULY 13, 1925, 5 COMP. GEN. 25

ACCOUNTING, SET-OFF - INDEBTEDNESS TO OFFICERS' MESS OF DECEASED ARMY OFFICER UNDER ARMY REGULATIONS 210-60, THE AMOUNT OWING AN OFFICERS' MESS BY A DECEASED OFFICER MAY BE INCLUDED IN THE FINAL ADJUSTMENT OF HIS PAY, BUT WHERE FOR ANY REASON IT IS NOT INCLUDED IN SUCH FINAL ADJUSTMENT OR SETTLEMENT, THE UNITED STATES IS NOT OBLIGATED TO LIQUIDATE THE INDEBTEDNESS AND IT BECOMES A MATTER BETWEEN THOSE PRESENTING SUCH CLAIM AND THE REPRESENTATIVES OF THE DECEASED.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL MCCARL TO MAJ. J. C. HATIE, UNITED STATES ARMY, JULY 13, 1925:

THERE HAS BEEN RECEIVED YOUR LETTER OF JANUARY 15, 1925, REQUESTING RECONSIDERATION OF THE ACTION OF THIS OFFICE DATED JANUARY 5, 1925, WHEREIN WAS DENIED YOUR CLAIM FOR PAYMENT OF $23.45, REPRESENTING THE AMOUNT DUE MESS NO. 1, FORT LEAVENWORTH, KANS., FROM CAPT. ROBERT T. HAYES, INFANTRY, AT THE TIME OF HIS DEATH, JANUARY 23, 1924. SETTLEMENT OF JANUARY 10, 1925, CERTIFICATE NO. 060358, MRS. R. F. HAYES, MORGANFIELD, KY., MOTHER OF CAPTAIN HAYES, WAS PAID $98.22, BEING THE AMOUNT OF PAY AND SUBSISTENCE, $182.42, ACCRUING TO THE DECEASED FROM JANUARY 1, 1924, TO DATE OF HIS DEATH, LESS AMOUNT DUE THE UNITED STATES ON ACCOUNT OF POST EXCHANGE, $78; LAUNDRY, $5.95;AND SIGNAL OFFICER, 30 CENTS. YOUR CLAIM FOR PAYMENT TO YOU OF THE MESS INDEBTEDNESS WAS DENIED ON THE GROUND THAT THERE WAS NO AUTHORITY OF LAW FOR CHARGING SAME TO THE AMOUNT ALLOWED IN THE SETTLEMENT.

ARMY REGULATIONS 210-60, PARAGRAPH 2, STATE:

GOVERNMENT AGENCIES.--- POST MESSES ARE ESTABLISHED, MAINTAINED, AND OPERATED FOR THE PURPOSE OF PROVIDING FOR THE SUBSISTENCE, WELFARE, GOOD ORDER, AND DISCIPLINE OF THE ARMY, AND, ACCORDINGLY, ARE CLASSED AS GOVERNMENT AGENCIES.

PARAGRAPH 8, UNDER THE HEADING "INDEBTEDNESS TO POST MESSES," SECTION B, AS STATES IN PART:

* * * AND THE COMMANDING OFFICER WILL TAKE THE NECESSARY ACTION TO CAUSE SUCH INDEBTEDNESS TO BE PAID BY THE MEMBERS IN PERSON OR TO CAUSE THE AMOUNTS TO BE DEDUCTED BY THE FINANCE OFFICER FROM ANY PAY DUE OR TO BECOME DUE SUCH MEMBERS.

THE REGULATIONS CAN PROPERLY BE GIVEN EFFECT TO AND THE MESS INDEBTEDNESS LIQUIDATED IN THE ADJUSTMENT OF THE ACCOUNT OF THE DECEASED IF THE AMOUNT OF THE ACCOUNT IS SUFFICIENT FOR THE PURPOSE, BUT WHERE THIS HAS NOT BEEN DONE, AS IN THE PRESENT CASE, THERE IS NO OBLIGATION UPON THE UNITED STATES WITH RESPECT TO THE LIQUIDATION OF THE MESS INDEBTEDNESS AND IT IS FOR THOSE REPRESENTING SUCH CLAIM TO PRESENT IT TO THE PROPER REPRESENTATIVES OF THE DECEASED.