B-107148, MAY 16, 1952, 31 COMP. GEN. 603

B-107148: May 16, 1952

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1952: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF DECEMBER 20. IT IS STATED THAT THE FORT BRAGG OFFICERS' MESS. IS CONSTRUCTING TWENTY OF THE MOTEL-TYPE HOUSING UNITS ON THE FORT BRAGG MILITARY RESERVATION FOR TEMPORARY OCCUPANCY BY MEMBERS OF THE UNIFORMED SERVICES ARRIVING AND DEPARTING THAT INSTALLATION. THAT THE CONSTRUCTION OF THE UNITS WAS APPROVED BY THE COMMANDING GENERAL OF FORT BRAGG AND THE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY. WILL BE PAID ENTIRELY FROM THE NONAPPROPRIATED FUNDS OF THE FORT BRAGG OFFICERS' MESS. IT IS STATED ALSO THAT THE CONSTRUCTION. OWNERSHIP OF THE UNITS FOR THE MENTIONED PURPOSE IS AN AUTHORIZED ACTIVITY OF THE FORT BRAGG OFFICERS' MESS ( ARMY REGULATIONS 210-55 AND 210-60).

B-107148, MAY 16, 1952, 31 COMP. GEN. 603

QUARTERS ALLOWANCE - RENTAL OF QUARTERS CONSTRUCTED AND OPERATED BY NONAPPROPRIATED FUND ACTIVITY OF ARMY A MEMBER OF THE UNIFORMED SERVICES WHO OCCUPIES, ON A RENTAL BASIS, A MOTEL-TYPE HOUSING UNIT CONSTRUCTED AND OPERATED ON AN ARMY POST BY AN OFFICERS' MESS--- A NONAPPROPRIATED FUND ACTIVITY OF THE ARMY--- DOES NOT BY REASON OF SUCH OCCUPANCY FORFEIT RIGHT TO AN ALLOWANCE FOR QUARTERS OR TO THE QUARTERS PORTION OF A PER DIEM ALLOWANCE TO WHICH THE MEMBER MAY OTHERWISE BE ENTITLED.

ASSISTANT COMPTROLLER GENERAL YATES TO THE SECRETARY OF THE ARMY, MAY 16, 1952:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF DECEMBER 20, 1951, WITH ENCLOSURES, REQUESTING DECISION AS TO WHETHER A MEMBER OF THE ARMY, OTHERWISE ENTITLED TO AN ALLOWANCE FOR QUARTERS, WOULD FORFEIT HIS RIGHT TO SUCH ALLOWANCE WHEN OCCUPYING CERTAIN MOTEL-TYPE HOUSING UNITS AT FORT BRAGG, NORTH CAROLINA, ON A RENTAL BASIS, AND WHETHER A MEMBER, OTHERWISE ENTITLED TO A PER DIEM LOWANCE,"WOULD LOSE THE QUARTERS PORTION OF SUCH ALLOWANCE" BY REASON OF OCCUPANCY OF SUCH UNITS ON A RENTAL BASIS.

IN THIS CONNECTION, IT IS STATED THAT THE FORT BRAGG OFFICERS' MESS, FORT BRAGG, NORTH CAROLINA, A NONAPPROPRIATED FUND ACTIVITY OF THE ARMY, IS CONSTRUCTING TWENTY OF THE MOTEL-TYPE HOUSING UNITS ON THE FORT BRAGG MILITARY RESERVATION FOR TEMPORARY OCCUPANCY BY MEMBERS OF THE UNIFORMED SERVICES ARRIVING AND DEPARTING THAT INSTALLATION, THEIR DEPENDENTS AND GUESTS, AND TRANSIENT MILITARY AND CIVILIAN PERSONNEL VISITING THE INSTALLATION; THAT THE CONSTRUCTION OF THE UNITS WAS APPROVED BY THE COMMANDING GENERAL OF FORT BRAGG AND THE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY; AND THAT THE COST OF CONSTRUCTION AND OPERATION, INCLUDING UTILITIES, SERVICES, AND MATERIALS, WILL BE PAID ENTIRELY FROM THE NONAPPROPRIATED FUNDS OF THE FORT BRAGG OFFICERS' MESS. IT IS STATED ALSO THAT THE CONSTRUCTION, OPERATION, AND OWNERSHIP OF THE UNITS FOR THE MENTIONED PURPOSE IS AN AUTHORIZED ACTIVITY OF THE FORT BRAGG OFFICERS' MESS ( ARMY REGULATIONS 210-55 AND 210-60); THAT A DAILY RENTAL CHARGE OF $3 FOR SINGLE UNITS AND $5 FOR DOUBLE UNITS WILL BE CHARGED PERSONS WHO OCCUPY THE UNITS; AND THAT ORDINARILY AN OFFICER AND HIS FAMILY WILL NOT BE PERMITTED TO OCCUPY SUCH UNITS FOR MORE THAN FIVE CONSECUTIVE NIGHTS.

SECTION 302 OF THE CAREER COMPENSATION ACT OF 1949, 63 STAT. 812, PROVIDES THAT EXCEPT AS OTHERWISE PROVIDED IN THAT SECTION OR BY ANY OTHER PROVISION OF LAW, MEMBERS OF THE UNIFORMED SERVICES SHALL BE ENTITLED TO RECEIVE A BASIC ALLOWANCE FOR QUARTERS IN SUCH AMOUNT AND UNDER SUCH CIRCUMSTANCES AS PROVIDED THEREIN; THAT EXCEPT AS OTHERWISE PROVIDED BY LAW, NO BASIC ALLOWANCE FOR QUARTERS SHALL ACCRUE TO MEMBERS OF THE UNIFORMED SERVICES ASSIGNED TO " GOVERNMENT QUARTERS OR HOUSING FACILITIES UNDER THE JURISDICTION OF THE UNIFORMED SERVICES," APPROPRIATE TO THEIR RANK, GRADE, OR RATING AND ADEQUATE FOR THEMSELVES AND DEPENDENTS, IF WITH DEPENDENTS; AND THAT THE PRESIDENT MAY PRESCRIBE REGULATIONS FOR THE ADMINISTRATION OF SAID SECTION. EXECUTIVE ORDER NO. 10204, DATED JANUARY 15, 1951, 16 F.R. 417, PROMULGATED PURSUANT TO SAID SECTION PROVIDES, IN PERTINENT PART, THAT ANY "QUARTERS OR HOUSING FACILITIES UNDER THE JURISDICTION OF ANY OF THE UNIFORMED SERVICES" IN FACT "OCCUPIED WITHOUT PAYMENT OF RENTAL CHARGES" (A) BY A MEMBER AND HIS DEPENDENTS, OR (B) AT HIS PERMANENT STATION BY A MEMBER WITHOUT DEPENDENTS, OR (C) BY THE DEPENDENTS OF A MEMBER ON FIELD DUTY OR SEA DUTY OR ON DUTY AT A STATION WHERE ADEQUATE QUARTERS ARE NOT AVAILABLE FOR HIS DEPENDENTS, SHALL BE DEEMED TO HAVE BEEN "ASSIGNED" TO SUCH MEMBER AS APPROPRIATE AND ADEQUATE QUARTERS, AND NO BASIC ALLOWANCE FOR QUARTERS SHALL ACCRUE TO SUCH MEMBER UNDER SUCH CIRCUMSTANCES UNLESS THE OCCUPANCY IS BECAUSE OF A SOCIAL VISIT OF A TEMPORARY NATURE. SAID EXECUTIVE ORDER FURTHER PROVIDES THAT THE SECRETARIES OF THE DEPARTMENTS CONCERNED ARE AUTHORIZED TO PRESCRIBE SUCH SUPPLEMENTAL REGULATIONS NOT INCONSISTENT WITH THE SAID ACT AS THEY MAY DEEM NECESSARY AND DESIRABLE FOR CARRYING OUT THE SAID ORDER, WHICH REGULATIONS SHALL BE UNIFORM FOR ALL THE SERVICES TO THE FULLEST EXTENT PRACTICABLE. ARMY SPECIAL REGULATIONS 35-1465-10, DATED MARCH 13, 1951, AND 35-1465-15, DATED MARCH 13, 1951, SUPPLEMENTING SAID EXECUTIVE ORDER PROVIDE THAT THE TERMS "QUARTERS" AND " GOVERNMENT QUARTERS" MEAN ANY SLEEPING ACCOMMODATIONS "OWNED OR LEASED BY THE GOVERNMENT," INCLUDING DORMITORIES OR SIMILAR FACILITIES OPERATED BY COST-PLUS-A-FIXED-FEE CONTRACTORS, REGARDLESS OF "WHETHER OR NOT A SERVICE CHARGE IS PAID.' SIMILAR DEFINITION OF THE TERM " GOVERNMENT QUARTERS" IS CONTAINED IN SECTION 1150-5, JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS.

THE ACT OF JULY 2, 1945, 59 STAT. 316, 37 U.S.C. 111A, PROVIDES THAT PERSONNEL OF THE ARMED SERVICES AND THEIR DEPENDENTS SHALL BE ELIGIBLE TO OCCUPY, ON A RENTAL BASIS, HOUSING FACILITIES UNDER THE JURISDICTION OF ANY GOVERNMENT DEPARTMENT OR AGENCY (OTHER THAN PUBLIC QUARTERS CONSTRUCTED OR DESIGNATED FOR ASSIGNMENT TO AND OCCUPANCY WITHOUT CHARGE BY PERSONNEL AND THEIR DEPENDENTS), WITHOUT LOSS OF MONEY ALLOWANCES TO WHICH THEY OTHERWISE ARE ENTITLED FOR RENTAL OF QUARTERS. SEE 25 COMP. GEN. 25, ID. 246; AND B-98956, DATED NOVEMBER 29, 1950.

ALTHOUGH YOUR SUBMISSION DOES NOT INCLUDE A DETAILED STATEMENT AS TO THE TERMS OF THE ARRANGEMENT BETWEEN THE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY AND THE FORT BRAGG OFFICERS' MESS CONCERNING THE CONSTRUCTION AND OPERATION OF THE HOUSING UNITS, IT SEEMS CLEAR THAT THEY SHOULD NOT BE CONSIDERED ,PUBLIC QUARTERS CONSTRUCTED OR DESIGNATED FOR ASSIGNMENT TO AND OCCUPANCY WITHOUT CHARGE BY PERSONNEL AND THEIR DEPENDENTS," WITHIN THE MEANING OF THE ACT OF JULY 2, 1945, SUPRA. WHILE THE RENTAL FOR SUCH UNITS IS NOT PAID TO THE GOVERNMENT, THEY ARE NOT "OCCUPIED WITHOUT PAYMENT OF RENTAL CHARGES" AND, HENCE, ARE NOT "ASSIGNED" TO THE PERSONNEL OR DEPENDENTS INVOLVED WITHIN THE TERMS OF SAID EXECUTIVE ORDER NO. 10204, AND SECTION 302 OF THE CAREER COMPENSATION ACT. AND WHILE THE UNITS WILL BE UNDER THE GENERAL JURISDICTION OF THE ARMY, THE GOVERNMENT'S OWNERSHIP AND CONTROL THEREOF WOULD BE SUBJECT TO THE REVOCABLE PERMISSION OR LICENSE GRANTED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY TO THE FORT BRAGG OFFICERS' MESS AS AN INCIDENT TO THE CONSTRUCTION OF SUCH UNITS, WHICH APPARENTLY INCLUDES THE RIGHT TO USE THE UNITS AS INDICATED ABOVE, SO THAT UNTIL SUCH LICENSE IS REVOKED THE GOVERNMENT WOULD NOT BECOME THE UNQUALIFIED OWNER OF SUCH UNITS, TO CONSTITUTE THEM , GOVERNMENT QUARTERS" WITHIN THE TERMS OF THE CITED ARMY SPECIAL REGULATIONS. COMPARE 3 COMP. GEN. 448. UNDER THE CIRCUMSTANCES, IT IS CONCLUDED THAT A MEMBER OF THE ARMY, OTHERWISE ENTITLED TO AN ALLOWANCE FOR QUARTERS, WOULD NOT FORFEIT HIS RIGHT TO SUCH ALLOWANCE AND A REDUCTION IN AN OTHERWISE AUTHORIZED PER DIEM ALLOWANCE IN LIEU OF SUBSISTENCE WOULD NOT BE REQUIRED MERELY BECAUSE OF OCCUPANCY ON A RENTAL BASIS OF THE MOTEL-TYPE HOUSING UNITS HERE INVOLVED.