B-118042, MAR 19, 1954

B-118042: Mar 19, 1954

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CHAIRMAN: UNITED STATES CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF DECEMBER 14. IT IS UNDERSTOOD THAT THE MEDICAL EXAMINATION OF MR. DOUGLAS WAS REQUESTED BY THE CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION UNDER THE AUTHORITY OF SECTION 5 OF THE CIVIL SERVICE RETIREMENT ACT. WHICH REQUIRES THAT EVERY ANNUITANT RETIRED FOR NONPERMANENT DISABILITY BE EXAMINED ANNUALLY UNTIL THE AGE OF RETIREMENT IS REACHED. THESE PROVISIONS OF LAW CONSISTENTLY HAVE BEEN CONSTRUED AS REQUIRING ALL MEDICAL OFFICERS OF THE UNITED STATES TO PERFORM THESE EXAMINATIONS. MAKES IT CLEAR THAT THE COMPANY IS REQUIRED TO BE SELF-SUSTAINING AND TO REIMBURSE THE UNITED STATES TREASURY FOR THE COST OF THE CANAL ZONE GOVERNMENT.

B-118042, MAR 19, 1954

PRECIS-UNAVAILABLE

HONORABLE PHILIP YOUNG, CHAIRMAN: UNITED STATES CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF DECEMBER 14, 1953, REQUESTING A DECISION AS TO WHETHER THE PANAMA CANAL COMPANY MAY BE REIMBURSED BY THE CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION FOR HOSPITAL SERVICES RENDERED DONALD H. DOUGLAS, AN ANNUITANT ON DISABILITY UNDER THE CIVIL SERVICE RETIREMENT ACT, AS AMENDED, 5 U.S.C. 691, ET SEQ., IN VIEW OF THE LACK OF ANY SPECIFIC AUTHORITY OF THE PANAMA CANAL COMPANY TO RECEIVE REIMBURSEMENT FOR SUCH SERVICES.

IT IS UNDERSTOOD THAT THE MEDICAL EXAMINATION OF MR. DOUGLAS WAS REQUESTED BY THE CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION UNDER THE AUTHORITY OF SECTION 5 OF THE CIVIL SERVICE RETIREMENT ACT, AS AMENDED, 5 U.S.C. 711, WHICH REQUIRES THAT EVERY ANNUITANT RETIRED FOR NONPERMANENT DISABILITY BE EXAMINED ANNUALLY UNTIL THE AGE OF RETIREMENT IS REACHED. THE ACT FURTHER PROVIDES (5 U.S.C. 712) THAT THE CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION SHALL FIX THE FEES FOR SUCH EXAMINATIONS PERFORMED BY OTHER THAN MEDICAL OFFICERS OF THE UNITED STATES AND THAT SUCH FEES AND RELATED TRAVELING AND OTHER EXPENSES SHALL BE PAID OUT OF AVAILABLE APPROPRIATIONS. THESE PROVISIONS OF LAW CONSISTENTLY HAVE BEEN CONSTRUED AS REQUIRING ALL MEDICAL OFFICERS OF THE UNITED STATES TO PERFORM THESE EXAMINATIONS-- WHEN REQUESTED BY THE CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION-- AS A PART OF THEIR REGULAR DUTIES WITHOUT COST TO ANNUITANTS OR TO THE COMMISSION. 10 COMP.GEN. 203, AND DECISIONS CITED THEREIN.

HOWEVER, THE LEGISLATIVE HISTORY OF THE ACT OF SEPTEMBER 26, 1950, PUBLIC LAW 841, 81ST CONGRESS, WHICH REORGANIZED THE PANAMA RAILROAD COMPANY AND RENAMED IT THE PANAMA CANAL COMPANY, MAKES IT CLEAR THAT THE COMPANY IS REQUIRED TO BE SELF-SUSTAINING AND TO REIMBURSE THE UNITED STATES TREASURY FOR THE COST OF THE CANAL ZONE GOVERNMENT. ALSO, SALES AND SERVICES TO OTHER GOVERNMENT AGENCIES SHOULD BE AT PRICES OVER COST WHICH MAY REASONABLY BE EXPECTED TO COVER, IN THE AGGREGATE, THE INTEREST ON THE GOVERNMENT'S INVESTMENT AND THE COMPANY'S SHARE OF THE EXPENSES OF CIVIL GOVERNMENT AND RELATED ACTIVITIES. IT WAS IN DISSATISFACTION OVER THE FAILURE OF THE CANAL ZONE GOVERNMENT TO RECEIVE FULL REIMBURSEMENT FOR SCHOOL AND HOSPITAL SERVICES FURNISHED OTHER GOVERNMENT AGENCIES THAT THE CONGRESS ENACTED, AS PERMANENT LAW, SECTION 105 OF THE CIVIL FUNCTIONS APPROPRIATIONS ACT, 1954, PUBLIC LAW 153, APPROVED JULY 27, 1953, 67 STAT. 202, SPECIFICALLY REQUIRING THAT SUCH SERVICES BE FULLY REIMBURSABLE. LIKEWISE, THE SECOND INDEPENDENT OFFICES APPROPRIATION ACT, 1954, PUBLIC LAW 149, APPROVED JULY 27, 1953, 67 STAT. 194, SPECIFICALLY REQUIRES REIMBURSEMENT OF COST FOR HOSPITALIZATION OR EXAMINATION OF ANY PERSONS BY THE VETERANS ADMINISTRATION, EXCEPT BENEFICIARIES ENTITLED UNDER THE LAWS BESTOWING SUCH BENEFITS TO VETERANS. HENCE, MEDICAL OFFICERS OF THE UNITED STATES EMPLOYED BY THE PANAMA CANAL COMPANY, THE CANAL ZONE GOVERNMENT OR THE VETERANS ADMINISTRATION ARE NO LONGER REQUIRED TO PERFORM MEDICAL EXAMINATIONS REQUIRED UNDER THE CIVIL SERVICE RETIREMENT ACT AS A PART OF THEIR REGULAR DUTIES WITHOUT COST TO THE CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION. IT ALSO IS CLEAR THAT THE CONGRESS DID NOT INTEND TO PREVENT THE ANNUITANTS FROM BEING EXAMINED BY MEDICAL OFFICERS OF THOSE AGENCIES NOR TO REQUIRE THE ANNUITANTS TO PAY THE COST OF SUCH EXAMINATIONS.

ACCORDINGLY, IT MUST BE CONCLUDED THAT WHEN ANNUITANTS ARE EXAMINED BY MEDICAL OFFICERS OF THESE AGENCIES AT THE REQUEST OF THE CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION, THE COST OF SUCH EXAMINATIONS ARE NECESSARY EXPENSES OF THE COMMISSION AND, AS SUCH, ARE PROPERLY CHARGEABLE TO THE APPROPRIATION "SALARIES AND EXPENSES, CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION."

THE ENCLOSURE TRANSMITTED WITH YOUR LETTER IS RETURNED HEREWITH AND, IF OTHERWISE CORRECT, THE INVOICE MAY BE CERTIFIED FOR PAYMENT.