B-117741, MAY 27, 1954, 33 COMP. GEN. 565

B-117741: May 27, 1954

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IS FOR RETURN TO LATTER AGENCY. IF THE WORK IS PERFORMED ON A REIMBURSABLE BASIS AND THE PERFORMING AGENCY ACQUIRES PROPERTY WITH ITS OWN FUNDS. SUCH PROPERTY IS UNDER THE CONTROL OF THE PERFORMING AGENCY AND. ONLY THE AMOUNT OF THE DEPRECIATION OF THE PROPERTY DURING ITS USE ON THAT PARTICULAR WORK IS FOR INCLUSION IN THE AMOUNT BILLED THE REQUISITIONING AGENCY. 1954: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF NOVEMBER 16. THE LATTER BUREAU AGREED TO FURNISH THE OFFICE OF PRICE STABILIZATION BIWEEKLY RETAIL FOOD PRICE ESTIMATES AND TO MAINTAIN STANDBY PERSONNEL FOR PROMPT PROCESSING OF OFFICE OF PRICE STABILIZATION REQUESTS FOR AVAILABLE PRICE DATE WHICH SUM WAS ADVANCED TO THE BUREAU OF LABOR STATISTICS.

B-117741, MAY 27, 1954, 33 COMP. GEN. 565

DEPARTMENTS AND ESTABLISHMENTS - SERVICES BETWEEN - OWNERSHIP TO PROPERTY PURCHASED UNDER SECTION 601, ECONOMY ACT OF 1932, WHICH AUTHORIZES THE PERFORMANCE OF WORK OR SERVICE BY ONE AGENCY FOR ANOTHER, PROPERTY PURCHASED BY PERFORMING AGENCY WITH FUNDS ADVANCED BY REQUISITIONING AGENCY, IF NOT COMPLETELY CONSUMED, IS FOR RETURN TO LATTER AGENCY, BUT IF THE WORK IS PERFORMED ON A REIMBURSABLE BASIS AND THE PERFORMING AGENCY ACQUIRES PROPERTY WITH ITS OWN FUNDS, SUCH PROPERTY IS UNDER THE CONTROL OF THE PERFORMING AGENCY AND, IF NOT CONSUMED IN THE PERFORMANCE OF THE WORK, ONLY THE AMOUNT OF THE DEPRECIATION OF THE PROPERTY DURING ITS USE ON THAT PARTICULAR WORK IS FOR INCLUSION IN THE AMOUNT BILLED THE REQUISITIONING AGENCY.

ACTING COMPTROLLER GENERAL WEITZEL TO ADMINISTRATOR, GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION, MAY 27, 1954:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF NOVEMBER 16, 1953, WITH ENCLOSURES, REQUESTING A DECISION AS TO WHETHER CERTAIN PERSONAL PROPERTY PURCHASED BY THE BUREAU OF LABOR STATISTICS, DEPARTMENT OF LABOR, WITH FUNDS ADVANCED TO IT BY THE OFFICE OF PRICE STABILIZATION, MAY BE CONSIDERED AS PROPERTY OF THE BUREAU.

IT APPEARS FROM YOUR LETTER AND CORRESPONDENCE ATTACHED THERETO THAT, BY LETTER OF THE OFFICE OF PRICE STABILIZATION, DATED AUGUST 25, 1952, APPROVED BY THE BUREAU OF LABOR STATISTICS, THE LATTER BUREAU AGREED TO FURNISH THE OFFICE OF PRICE STABILIZATION BIWEEKLY RETAIL FOOD PRICE ESTIMATES AND TO MAINTAIN STANDBY PERSONNEL FOR PROMPT PROCESSING OF OFFICE OF PRICE STABILIZATION REQUESTS FOR AVAILABLE PRICE DATE WHICH SUM WAS ADVANCED TO THE BUREAU OF LABOR STATISTICS. THE AGREEMENT SPECIFICALLY PROVIDED THAT, UPON ITS TERMINATION,"THE BUREAU OF LABOR STATISTICS AGREES TO RETURN ALL OFFICE OF PRICE STABILIZATION PROPERTY AND EQUIPMENT.' YOUR LETTER STATES THAT EACH PIECE OF PROPERTY PURCHASED FROM THE ADVANCE FUNDS--- AT A TOTAL ACQUISITION COST OF $24,713.87--- BORE A LABEL READING " OPS-ESA," WAS CARRIED ON THE PROPERTY RECORDS OF THE OFFICE OF PRICE STABILIZATION, AND WAS DECLARED EXCESS PERSONAL PROPERTY TO THE GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION BY THE OFFICE OF PRICE STABILIZATION PRIOR TO ITS LIQUIDATION.

THE ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF LABOR, IN HIS LETTERS OF JULY 3 AND AUGUST 20, 1953, TO THE GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION, STATES THAT THE DEPARTMENT OF LABOR'S POSITION--- SUSTAINED BY 15 OR MORE YEARS OF EXTENSIVE EXPERIENCE WITH WORKING FUNDS DURING WHICH TIME NO DEMAND EVER HAS BEEN MADE FOR RETURN OF PROPERTY SO ACQUIRED--- IS THAT AN AGENCY OF THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT PERFORMING SERVICES FOR ANOTHER SUCH AGENCY HAS NO OBLIGATION TO TRANSFER PROPERTY PURCHASED FOR THE PERFORMANCE OF SUCH SERVICES AT THE CONCLUSION OF THE WORK.

THE CORRESPONDENCE ATTACHED TO YOUR LETTER DISCLOSES THAT THE WORK INVOLVED WAS PERFORMED UNDER THE AUTHORITY OF SECTION 601 OF THE ECONOMY ACT OF 1932, 47 STAT. 417, AS AMENDED, 31 U.S.C. 686, WHICH PROVIDES IN PART AS FOLLOWS:

(A) ANY EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENT OR INDEPENDENT ESTABLISHMENT OF THE GOVERNMENT, OR ANY BUREAU OR OFFICE THEREOF, IF FUNDS ARE AVAILABLE THEREFOR AND IF IT IS DETERMINED BY THE HEAD OF SUCH EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENT, ESTABLISHMENT, BUREAU, OR OFFICE TO BE IN THE INTEREST OF THE GOVERNMENT SO TO DO, MAY PLACE ORDERS WITH ANY OTHER SUCH DEPARTMENT, ESTABLISHMENT, BUREAU, OR OFFICE FOR MATERIALS, SUPPLIES, EQUIPMENT, WORK, OR SERVICES, OF ANY KIND THAT SUCH REQUISITIONED FEDERAL AGENCY MAY BE IN A POSITION TO SUPPLY OR EQUIPPED TO RENDER, AND SHALL PAY PROMPTLY BY CHECK TO SUCH FEDERAL AGENCY AS MAY BE REQUISITIONED, UPON ITS WRITTEN REQUEST, EITHER IN ADVANCE OR UPON THE FURNISHING OR PERFORMANCE THEREOF, ALL OR PART OF THE ESTIMATED OR ACTUAL COST THEREOF AS DETERMINED BY SUCH DEPARTMENT, ESTABLISHMENT, BUREAU, OR OFFICE AS MAY BE REQUISITIONED; BUT PROPER ADJUSTMENTS ON THE BASIS OF THE ACTUAL COST OF THE MATERIALS, SUPPLIES, OR EQUIPMENT FURNISHED, OR WORK OR SERVICES PERFORMED, PAID FOR IN ADVANCE, SHALL BE MADE AS MAY BE AGREED UPON BY THE DEPARTMENTS, ESTABLISHMENTS, BUREAU, OR OFFICES CONCERNED: * * *

THERE IS SOME DOUBT AS TO WHETHER THE BUREAU OF LABOR STATISTICS WAS "IN A POSITION TO SUPPLY OR EQUIPPED TO RENDER," AS THAT TERM IS USED IN THE ABOVE STATUTORY PROVISION, THE SERVICES HERE INVOLVED WHICH REQUIRED THE MAINTENANCE OF STANDBY PERSONNEL AND THE PURCHASE OF OVER $24,000 WORTH OF PROPERTY TO DO WORK AT AN APPROXIMATE COST OF $54,000, INCLUDING THE COST OF THE PROPERTY. HOWEVER, A DETERMINATION OF THAT QUESTION DOES NOT APPEAR NECESSARILY REQUIRED AT THIS LATE DATE.

SECTION 601 OF THE ECONOMY ACT, 47 STAT. 417, CONTEMPLATES THAT MATERIALS, SUPPLIES OR EQUIPMENT FURNISHED OR WORK OR SERVICES PERFORMED UNDER AN ADVANCE OF FUNDS SHALL BE ON AN ACTUAL COST BASIS AS AGREED UPON BY THE AGENCIES CONCERNED. THE TERM "ACTUAL COST" AS USED IN THAT PROVISION OF LAW INCLUDES DEPRECIATION ON PROPERTY USED IN THE PERFORMANCE OF SUCH WORK OR SERVICES. 22 COMP. GEN. 74. IF THE WORK IS PERFORMED ON A REIMBURSABLE BASIS AND THE PERFORMING AGENCY ACQUIRES PROPERTY WITH ITS OWN FUNDS, SUCH PROPERTY IS UNDER THE CONTROL OF THE PERFORMING AGENCY AND, IF NOT CONSUMED IN THE PERFORMANCE OF THE WORK, ONLY THE AMOUNT OF THE DEPRECIATION OF THE PROPERTY DURING ITS USE ON THAT PARTICULAR WORK ORDINARILY WOULD BE PROPER FOR INCLUSION IN THE AMOUNT BILLED THE REQUISITIONING AGENCY. LIKEWISE, IT SEEMS CLEAR THAT PROPERTY ACQUIRED WITH FUNDS ADVANCED FROM THE REQUISITIONING AGENCY WOULD BE PROPERTY UNDER THE CONTROL OF SUCH REQUISITIONING AGENCY EVEN THOUGH IN THE CUSTODY OF THE PERFORMING AGENCY AND, AS SUCH, WOULD BE AN ASSET OF THE REQUISITIONING AGENCY. IF SUCH PROPERTY IS NOT CONSUMED IN THE PERFORMANCE OF THE WORK IT WOULD BE PROPERLY FOR RETURN TO THE REQUISITIONING AGENCY OR FOR ITS USE OR FOR DISPOSITION AS EXCESS PROPERTY. THUS, WHETHER THE WORK IS PERFORMED ON A REIMBURSABLE BASIS OR WITH AN ADVANCE OF FUNDS, THE PROPERTY UPON COMPLETION OF THE WORK WOULD BE AN ASSET OF THE AGENCY BEARING THE COST OF ITS ACQUISITION.

ACCORDINGLY, AND SINCE THE INSTANT AGREEMENT SPECIFICALLY SO PROVIDES, THE PROPERTY HERE IN QUESTION IS PROPERLY FOR DISPOSITION AS EXCESS PERSONAL PROPERTY OF THE OFFICE OF PRICE STABILIZATION.