B-119487, JUL 22, 1954

B-119487: Jul 22, 1954

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INC.: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER DATED MARCH 1. IT APPEARS THAT THE GASOLINE COUPON BOOKS INVOLVED ARE SOLD AS A MEANS OF CONTROLLING BLACK MARKET ACTIVITIES IN GASOLINE. FROM TIME TO TIME NEW SERIES OF COUPONS WERE ISSUED AND THE AUTHORIZED PERSONNEL PERMITTED TO REDEEM UNUSED COUPONS OF THE OLD SERIES. IS REPORTED WITH RESPECT TO THE COUPON BOOK FORWARDED WITH YOUR CLAIM. THAT COUPONS OF THE OLD SERIES WERE REDEEMABLE THROUGH APRIL 30. DURING WHICH INTERVAL WIDE PUBLICITY WAS GIVEN TO THE NECESSITY FOR REDEMPTION PRIOR TO SUCH LATTER DATE. THAT NO PROVISION WAS MADE FOR REDEEMING UNUSED OLD SERIES COUPONS PRESENTED THEREAFTER. YOUR CLAIM WAS PRESENTED TO THE EXCHANGE SERVICE.

B-119487, JUL 22, 1954

PRECIS-UNAVAILABLE

MR. LAWRENCE E. DE NEUFVILLE, C/O NATIONAL COMMITTEE FOR A FREE EUROPE, INC.:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER DATED MARCH 1, 1954, REQUESTING REVIEW OF GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE SETTLEMENT DATED FEBRUARY 23, 1954, WHICH DISALLOWED YOUR CLAIM FOR REFUND OF THE PURCHASE PRICE, $4.48, OF CERTAIN UNUSED GASOLINE COUPONS PURCHASED FROM THE EUROPEAN EXCHANGE SYSTEM.

IT APPEARS THAT THE GASOLINE COUPON BOOKS INVOLVED ARE SOLD AS A MEANS OF CONTROLLING BLACK MARKET ACTIVITIES IN GASOLINE, BY THE EUROPEAN EXCHANGE SYSTEM OF THE ARMY, AS AGENT OF THE ARMY QUARTERMASTER CORPS, IN ACCORDANCE WITH POLICIES ESTABLISHED BY THE COMMANDER-IN-CHIEF, UNITED STATES ARMY, EUROPE, TO MILITARY PERSONNEL AND CERTAIN OTHER PERSONS AUTHORIZED TO USE THEM. IT FURTHER APPEARS THAT TO PREVENT COUNTERFEITING OF SUCH COUPONS, FROM TIME TO TIME NEW SERIES OF COUPONS WERE ISSUED AND THE AUTHORIZED PERSONNEL PERMITTED TO REDEEM UNUSED COUPONS OF THE OLD SERIES, WIDE PUBLICITY BEING GIVEN TO THE CHANGE OF COUPONS AND THE PERIOD OF TIME ALLOWED IN WHICH THE OLD SERIES OF COUPONS COULD BE REDEEMED. IS REPORTED WITH RESPECT TO THE COUPON BOOK FORWARDED WITH YOUR CLAIM, THAT NEW COUPON BOOKS WENT ON SALE ON MARCH 1, 1953, AND THAT COUPONS OF THE OLD SERIES WERE REDEEMABLE THROUGH APRIL 30, 1953, DURING WHICH INTERVAL WIDE PUBLICITY WAS GIVEN TO THE NECESSITY FOR REDEMPTION PRIOR TO SUCH LATTER DATE, AND THAT NO PROVISION WAS MADE FOR REDEEMING UNUSED OLD SERIES COUPONS PRESENTED THEREAFTER. YOUR CLAIM WAS PRESENTED TO THE EXCHANGE SERVICE, WHICH REFUSED PAYMENT THEREOF AND UPON ITS PRESENTATION TO THIS OFFICE, YOUR CLAIM WAS DISALLOWED.

YOU STATE IN YOUR LETTER REQUESTING RECONSIDERATION THAT YOU DID NOT RECEIVE NOTICE OF THE CALLING IN OF THE COUPONS, AND SINCE THE DISALLOWANCE WAS LARGELY BASED UPON THE POLICY OF THE ARMY COMMAND THAT YOU FEEL THAT THE MATTER SHOULD BE CONSIDERED IN THE LIGHT OF POLICY APPLICABLE TO CLAIMS OF THOSE WHO HAVE DEPOSITED AMOUNTS TO COVER PURCHASES FROM THE UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT BUT WHO HAVE NOT RECEIVED DELIVERY.

IT WILL BE NOTED THAT WHILE THE ADMINISTRATIVE REPORT STATES THAT WIDE PUBLICITY WAS GIVEN TO THE ORDER CALLING IN THE SERIES OF THE COUPONS INVOLVED, NO CONTENTION IS MADE THAT SUCH ORDER WAS BROUGHT TO YOUR PARTICULAR ATTENTION AND MANIFESTLY THE PERSONAL NOTIFICATION OF EACH HOLDER OF A COUPON BOOK WOULD BE HIGHLY IMPRACTICAL IF NOT IMPOSSIBLE.

THE GASOLINE COUPONS WERE SOLD TO YOU FOR USE AT QUARTERMASTER RETAIL FILLING STATIONS AND EACH COUPON CONTAINS A LEGEND TO THE EFFECT THAT IT MAY BE USED ONLY IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE REGULATIONS OF THE EUROPEAN COMMAND AND THAT THE COUPON MAY BE RECALLED AND REDEEMED WHEN SUCH ACTION IS FOUND NECESSARY. THUS YOU PURCHASED THE COUPONS SUBJECT TO THE REGULATIONS OF THE EUROPEAN COMMAND AND WITH NOTICE THAT THEY MIGHT BE RECALLED AND REDEEMED FROM TIME TO TIME. AS SET OUT ABOVE, THE APPLICABLE REGULATIONS PROVIDE THAT THE INVOLVED COUPONS MIGHT BE REDEEMED AT THEIR PURCHASE PRICE, UP TO, BUT NOT LATER THAN APRIL 30, 1953, AND NO PROVISION WAS MADE FOR THEIR REDEMPTION THEREAFTER. SINCE THE COUPONS WERE PURCHASED WITH THE UNDERSTANDING THAT THEIR USE WOULD BE SUBJECT TO REGULATIONS OF THE EUROPEAN COMMAND, THERE APPEARS NO PROPER BASIS FOR DISREGARDING THEM AND THE ACTION HERETOFORE TAKEN IN DISALLOWING YOUR CLAIM APPEARS CORRECT AND IS SUSTAINED.