B-117899, DEC 3, 1953

B-117899: Dec 3, 1953

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WHILE THE VOLUME OF SUCH CLAIMS HAS NOT BEEN LARGE AND PAYMENTS HAVE NOT BEEN SUBSTANTIALLY DELAYED UNDER THE PRESENT PROCEDURE. THE CLAIMS GENERALLY ARE OF A ROUTINE NATURE AND IT IS BELIEVED TO BE UNNECESSARY. SINCE THERE IS CONSIDERABLE DOUBT THAT THE PRESENT LAW AUTHORIZES ANYONE OTHER THAN THE "ACCOUNTING OFFICERS" TO ALLOW OR APPROVE FOR PAYMENT THE AMOUNTS DUE IN SUCH CASES. IT IS THE VIEW OF THIS OFFICE THAT. UNLESS AND UNTIL THERE IS SOME CHANGE IN THE APPLICABLE STATUTES. IT IS REQUESTED. THAT INSTRUCTIONS BE ISSUED TO ALL AIR FORCE DISBURSING OFFICERS CONCERNED WHICH WILL CAUSE ADVANCE DECISION REQUESTS OF THE TYPE DESCRIBED ABOVE TO BE DISCONTINUED AND THE CLAIMS INVOLVED TO BE SUBMITTED TO THE CLAIMS DIVISION.

B-117899, DEC 3, 1953

PRECIS-UNAVAILABLE

THE SECRETARY OF THE AIR FORCE:

UNDER EXISTING REGULATIONS AND PROCEDURES, AIR FORCE DISBURSING OFFICERS SUBMIT TO THE COMPTROLLER GENERAL, FOR ADVANCE DECISION, VOUCHERS COVERING CLAIMS OF HEIRS AND LEGAL REPRESENTATIVES OF DECEASED MEMBERS OF THE AIR NATIONAL GUARD FOR ARMORY DRILL PAY AND OTHER FEDERAL PAY DUE SUCH MEMBERS AT DATE OF DEATH. WHILE THE VOLUME OF SUCH CLAIMS HAS NOT BEEN LARGE AND PAYMENTS HAVE NOT BEEN SUBSTANTIALLY DELAYED UNDER THE PRESENT PROCEDURE, THE CLAIMS GENERALLY ARE OF A ROUTINE NATURE AND IT IS BELIEVED TO BE UNNECESSARY, UNDER THE LAW AND CIRCUMSTANCES NOW EXISTING, THAT AN ADVANCE DECISION BE RENDERED ON EACH OF SUCH CLAIMS. HOWEVER, SINCE THERE IS CONSIDERABLE DOUBT THAT THE PRESENT LAW AUTHORIZES ANYONE OTHER THAN THE "ACCOUNTING OFFICERS" TO ALLOW OR APPROVE FOR PAYMENT THE AMOUNTS DUE IN SUCH CASES, IT IS THE VIEW OF THIS OFFICE THAT, UNLESS AND UNTIL THERE IS SOME CHANGE IN THE APPLICABLE STATUTES, THE SAID CLAIMS SHOULD NOT BE PAID WITHOUT PRIOR ACTION THEREON BY SOME AGENCY OF THIS OFFICE.

IT IS REQUESTED, THEREFORE, THAT INSTRUCTIONS BE ISSUED TO ALL AIR FORCE DISBURSING OFFICERS CONCERNED WHICH WILL CAUSE ADVANCE DECISION REQUESTS OF THE TYPE DESCRIBED ABOVE TO BE DISCONTINUED AND THE CLAIMS INVOLVED TO BE SUBMITTED TO THE CLAIMS DIVISION, GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE, FOR DIRECT SETTLEMENT. IT IS FURTHER REQUESTED THAT SUCH INSTRUCTIONS ADVISE THE DISBURSING OFFICERS THAT CLAIMS INVOLVED IN REQUESTS FOR ADVANCE DECISION OF THIS NATURE NOW PENDING WILL BE SETTLED DIRECTLY BY THE CLAIMS DIVISION OF THE GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE WITHOUT FURTHER ADVICE TO THEM.

THIS MATTER WAS DISCUSSED INFORMALLY WITH A REPRESENTATIVE OF THE DIRECTOR OF FINANCE, DEPARTMENT OF THE AIR FORCE, AND (AS TO THE NATIONAL GUARD) WITH A REPRESENTATIVE OF THE CHIEF OF FINANCE, DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY, AND NO OBJECTION TO THE PROPOSED CHANGE IN PROCEDURE WAS INDICATED. A LETTER SIMILAR TO THIS ONE, HAVING REFERENCE TO THE NATIONAL GUARD, IS BEING SENT TO THE SECRETARY OF THE ARMY.