B-115874, NOVEMBER 2, 1953, 33 COMP. GEN. 196

B-115874: Nov 2, 1953

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WAS NOT ON PUBLIC BUSINESS SO AS TO BE IN A TRAVEL STATUS DURING SUCH PERIOD WITHIN THE CONTEMPLATION OF THE TRAVEL AND TRANSPORTATION ALLOWANCE PROVISIONS OF PARAGRAPH 3050 OF THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS AND IS NOT ENTITLED TO PAYMENT OF TRAVEL AND TRANSPORTATION ALLOWANCES. THE TRAVEL IN QUESTION APPEARS TO HAVE BEEN INITIATED UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF PARAGRAPH 28. ON TEMPORARY DUTY FOR A PERIOD OF 31 DAYS IN ADDITION TO TRAVEL TIME TO WORK AT THE ARMED FORCES INSTITUTE OF PATHOLOGY UPON THE COMPLETION OF WHICH HE WAS TO RETURN TO HIS DUTY STATION. SUCH ORDERS APPEAR TO HAVE BEEN ISSUED ON THE BASIS OF COMMUNICATIONS DATED FEBRUARY 24 AND MARCH 12. WERE REVOKED. LOUIS AND RETURN TO THE PROPER DUTY STATION WERE AUTHORIZED AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE UNDER THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS.

B-115874, NOVEMBER 2, 1953, 33 COMP. GEN. 196

TRAVELING EXPENSES - MILITARY, NAVAL, ETC., PERSONNEL - PERSONAL CONVENIENCE VS.'PUBLIC BUSINESS" AN ARMY OFFICER WHO PERFORMED TRAVEL AND TEMPORARY DUTY INCIDENT TO ORDERS ISSUED AT THE OFFICER'S PERSONAL REQUEST THAT HE BE TEMPORARILY ASSIGNED TO THE ARMED FORCES INSTITUTE OF PATHOLOGY AT WASHINGTON, D.C. AND LATER TO ST. LOUIS TO TAKE THE AMERICAN BOARD OF PATHOLOGY EXAMINATION, WAS NOT ON PUBLIC BUSINESS SO AS TO BE IN A TRAVEL STATUS DURING SUCH PERIOD WITHIN THE CONTEMPLATION OF THE TRAVEL AND TRANSPORTATION ALLOWANCE PROVISIONS OF PARAGRAPH 3050 OF THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS AND IS NOT ENTITLED TO PAYMENT OF TRAVEL AND TRANSPORTATION ALLOWANCES.

ASSISTANT COMPTROLLER GENERAL WEITZEL TO LIEUTENANT COLONEL B. H. JOHNSTON, DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY, NOVEMBER 2, 1953:

THERE HAS BEEN CONSIDERED YOUR LETTER OF MAY 14, 1953, FORWARDED HERE BY ENDORSEMENT DATED JUNE 19, 1953, OF THE CHIEF OF FINANCE, DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY, REQUESTING DECISION WHETHER PAYMENT PROPERLY MAY BE MADE ON VOUCHER ENCLOSED THEREWITH IN FAVOR OF MAJOR JOHN K. FROST, MC, IN THE AMOUNT OF $231.33, REPRESENTING A MONETARY ALLOWANCE OF 5 CENTS PER MILE IN LIEU OF TRANSPORTATION FOR THE DISTANCE FROM WASHINGTON, D.C., TO SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA, BY WAY OF ST. LOUIS, MISSOURI, AND PER DIEM FOR 5 1/2 DAYS PLUS MISCELLANEOUS TRANSPORTATION EXPENSES, INCIDENT TO TRAVEL PERFORMED BETWEEN THOSE POINTS DURING THE PERIOD MARCH 27 TO APRIL 1, 1953.

THE TRAVEL IN QUESTION APPEARS TO HAVE BEEN INITIATED UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF PARAGRAPH 28, SPECIAL ORDERS NO. 37, HEADQUARTERS, PRESIDIO OF SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA, DATED FEBRUARY 24, 1953, WHICH PROVIDED THAT MAJOR FROST SHOULD PROCEED ON OR ABOUT FEBRUARY 25, 1953, TO WASHINGTON, D.C., ON TEMPORARY DUTY FOR A PERIOD OF 31 DAYS IN ADDITION TO TRAVEL TIME TO WORK AT THE ARMED FORCES INSTITUTE OF PATHOLOGY UPON THE COMPLETION OF WHICH HE WAS TO RETURN TO HIS DUTY STATION. SUCH ORDERS PROVIDED FURTHER " NO EXPENSES TO THE GOVT.' HE DEPARTED UNDER THOSE ORDERS ON FEBRUARY 28 AND ARRIVED AT WASHINGTON, D.C., ON MARCH 4, 1953. PARAGRAPH 11, SPECIAL ORDERS NO. 52 OF THE SAME COMMAND, DATED MARCH 17, 1953, AMENDED THE ORDERS OF FEBRUARY 24 TO PROVIDE THAT THE OFFICER SHOULD PROCEED FROM WASHINGTON ON OR ABOUT MARCH 27, 1953, TO ST. LOUIS, MISSOURI, ON TEMPORARY DUTY FOR APPROXIMATELY 3 DAYS IN ADDITION TO TRAVEL TIME "TO TAKE EXAMINATION IN PATH ANATOMY GIVEN BY THE AMERICAN BD. OF PATHOLOGY AT WASHINGTON UNIVERSITY SCH. OF MEDICINE ST. LOUIS MO. ON 28 AND 30 MAR. 53," UPON THE COMPLETION OF WHICH HE SHOULD RETURN TO HIS PROPER STATION. SUCH ORDERS APPEAR TO HAVE BEEN ISSUED ON THE BASIS OF COMMUNICATIONS DATED FEBRUARY 24 AND MARCH 12, 1953, FROM THE SURGEON GENERAL TO THE COMMANDING GENERAL, SIXTH ARMY, WITH REFERENCE TO A REQUEST MADE BY MAJOR FROST, STATING AN APPROVAL OF THE PROPOSED TEMPORARY DUTY AT ST. LOUIS, MISSOURI, AND DISAPPROVAL OF TEMPORARY DUTY AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE AT THE ARMED FORCES INSTITUTE OF PATHOLOGY AT WASHINGTON, D.C. PARAGRAPH 1, SPECIAL ORDERS NO. 62, HEADQUARTERS, PRESIDIO OF SAN FRANCISCO, DATED MARCH 31, 1953, AUTHORIZED ONE DAY OF DELAY CHARGEABLE AS LEAVE "IN ORDER TO COMPLY" WITH THE CITED ORDERS OF MARCH 17, 1953. PARAGRAPH 21, SPECIAL ORDERS NO. 78 OF THE SAME COMMAND DATED APRIL 22, 1953, PROVIDED THAT THE FOREGOING ORDERS OF FEBRUARY 24, MARCH 17, AND MARCH 31, WERE REVOKED, AND PARAGRAPH 22 OF THOSE ORDERS PURPORTING TO CONFIRM VERBAL ORDERS OF FEBRUARY 25, 1953--- ON THE STATED BASIS THAT THE EXIGENCIES OF THE SERVICE HAD BEEN SUCH AS TO PRECLUDE THE ISSUANCE OF WRITTEN ORDERS IN ADVANCE--- RESTATED THE DIRECTIONS FOR TRAVEL AND TEMPORARY DUTY CONTAINED IN THE REVOKED ORDERS AND PROVIDED THAT THE TRAVEL TO WASHINGTON, D.C., AND TEMPORARY DUTY THERE SHOULD BE AT NO EXPENSE TO THE GOVERNMENT BUT THAT TRAVEL AND PER DIEM ALLOWANCES FOR TRAVEL AND TEMPORARY DUTY FROM WASHINGTON, D.C., TO ST. LOUIS AND RETURN TO THE PROPER DUTY STATION WERE AUTHORIZED AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE UNDER THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS. AUTHORITY FOR SUCH PROVISION WAS STATED TO BE THE ABOVE-CITED COMMUNICATION OF MARCH 12, 1953, FROM THE SURGEON GENERAL.

SECTION 303 OF THE CAREER COMPENSATION ACT OF 1949, 63 STAT. 813, PROVIDES FOR THE PAYMENT OF TRAVEL AND TRANSPORTATION ALLOWANCES TO MEMBERS OF THE UNIFORMED SERVICES TRAVELING UNDER COMPETENT ORDERS OR WHEN AWAY FROM THEIR DESIGNATED POSTS OF DUTY, UNDER REGULATIONS PRESCRIBED BY THE SECRETARIES CONCERNED, SUCH REGULATIONS TO BE UNIFORM FOR ALL SERVICES INSOFAR AS PRACTICABLE. REGULATIONS ISSUED UNDER THAT AUTHORITY ARE CONTAINED IN THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS. PARAGRAPH 3050 OF THOSE REGULATIONS PROVIDES THAT MEMBERS OF THE UNIFORMED SERVICES ARE ENTITLED TO TRAVEL AND TRANSPORTATION ALLOWANCES, AS AUTHORIZED IN ACCORDANCE WITH EXISTING REGULATIONS, ONLY WHILE IN A TRAVEL STATUS, AND THAT THEY SHALL BE DEEMED TO BE IN A TRAVEL STATUS "WHILE PERFORMING TRAVEL AWAY FROM THEIR PERMANENT DUTY STATION, UPON PUBLIC BUSINESS, PURSUANT TO COMPETENT TRAVEL ORDERS, INCLUDING NECESSARY DELAYS EN ROUTE INCIDENT TO MODE OF TRAVEL AND PERIOD OF NECESSARY TEMPORARY OR TEMPORARY ADDITIONAL DUTY.' THE PHRASE "PUBLIC BUSINESS" AS SO USED IS UNDERSTOOD AS RELATING TO SOME DULY AUTHORIZED ACTIVITY OR FUNCTION OF THE SERVICE TO WHICH THE TRAVELER IS ATTACHED, AND THE TRAVEL AND TEMPORARY DUTY CONTEMPLATED IS THAT WHICH REASONABLY MAY BE CONSIDERED AS HAVING BEEN PERFORMED UNDER COMPETENT ORDERS IN THE ACCOMPLISHMENT OF THE PURPOSES AND REQUIREMENTS OF SUCH ACTIVITY OR FUNCTION. CLEARLY TRAVEL PERFORMED PRIMARILY FOR PERSONAL CONVENIENCE AND BENEFIT IS NOT CONTEMPLATED.

THE TRAVEL AND TEMPORARY DUTY INVOLVED HERE APPEAR TO HAVE BEEN DIRECTED IN THE VARIOUS CITED ORDERS AS A CONSEQUENCE OF MAJOR FROST'S PERSONAL REQUEST THAT HE BE TEMPORARILY ASSIGNED TO THE ARMED FORCES INSTITUTE OF PATHOLOGY AT WASHINGTON AND LATER AT ST. LOUIS TO TAKE THE AMERICAN BOARD OF PATHOLOGY EXAMINATION. THAT PUBLIC BUSINESS WAS NOT ANTICIPATED BY SUCH ORDERS IS INDICATED BY THE FACT THAT LEAVE WAS GRANTED THEREIN SO THAT THE OFFICER MIGHT COMPLY WITH THAT PART OF THE ORDERS AUTHORIZING TEMPORARY DUTY AT ST. LOUIS, THERE IS NOTHING IN THE RECORD TO INDICATE THAT THE EXAMINATION WAS REQUIRED AS A MATTER OF PUBLIC BUSINESS WITHIN THE CONTEMPLATION OF THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS, OR WAS OTHER THAN A MATTER OF PERSONAL BENEFIT TO THE OFFICER. CF. 9 COMP. GEN. 490. UNDER THE INDICATED CIRCUMSTANCES IT IS NOT ESTABLISHED THAT THE OFFICER WAS IN A TRAVEL STATUS DURING THE PERIOD IN QUESTION WITHIN THE CONTEMPLATION OF THE GOVERNING REGULATIONS FOR PURPOSES OF ENTITLEMENT TO THE TRAVEL AND TRANSPORTATION ALLOWANCES CLAIMED. ACCORDINGLY, PAYMENT IS NOT AUTHORIZED IN THE VOUCHER, WHICH IS RETAINED IN THIS OFFICE.