B-123205, MAY 9, 1955

B-123205: May 9, 1955

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BUCKLEY: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF MARCH 7. IT IS STATED THAT MR. KINNEY WAS REQUESTED TO FURNISH TRANSPORTATION FOR MR. IT IS FURTHER STATED THAT IT WAS NECESSARY FOR MR. CAMPBELL WAS FURNISHED TRANSPORTATION BY MR. CAMPBELL WAS REQUIRED TO UNDERTAKE A SIMILAR TRIP TO MEET THE REGIONAL ADMINISTRATOR AT THE AIRPORT IN SAN FRANCISCO AND RETURN TO THE REGIONAL OFFICE AT SANTA ROSA. IT IS STATED BY MR. IT IS ALSO STATED THAT THE TRIP WAS FOR OFFICIAL BUSINESS TO BRIEF THE REGIONAL ADMINISTRATOR ON OFFICIAL BUSINESS MATTERS PRIOR TO HIS ARRIVAL AT THE REGIONAL OFFICE AND NOT JUST TO TRANSPORT HIM TO HIS OFFICE. THE FOREGOING DECISION WAS RENDERED UNDER THE MILEAGE ACT OF FEBRUARY 14.

B-123205, MAY 9, 1955

PRECIS-UNAVAILABLE

MISS MARY G. BUCKLEY:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF MARCH 7, 1955, REQUESTING ADVICE AS TO THE PROPRIETY OF CERTIFYING FOR PAYMENT THE SUBMITTED RECLAIM VOUCHERS OF MR. JOHN J. KINNEY AND MR. STEWART C. CAMPBELL, IN THE AMOUNTS OF $9.48 AND $11.30, RESPECTIVELY. THE AMOUNTS REPRESENT MILEAGE FOR USE OF PRIVATELY OWNED AUTOMOBILES, BRIDGE TOLLS, AND FERRY TOLL.

THE RECORDS SHOW THAT MR. KINNEY, AN EMPLOYEE OF THE FEDERAL CIVIL DEFENSE ADMINISTRATION, DEPARTED FROM HIS OFFICIAL HEADQUARTERS, SANTA ROSA, CALIFORNIA, AT 5:30 P.M., OCTOBER 29, 1954, FOR SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA, VIA PRIVATELY OWNED AUTOMOBILE, AND RETURNED TO HIS HEADQUARTERS FROM THAT POINT THE SAME DAY, ARRIVING IN SANTA ROSA AT 8:20 P.M. IT IS STATED THAT MR. KINNEY WAS REQUESTED TO FURNISH TRANSPORTATION FOR MR. STEWART C. CAMPBELL, ALSO AN EMPLOYEE OF THE FEDERAL CIVIL DEFENSE ADMINISTRATION, DUE TO THE INABILITY OF PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION AND UNAVAILABILITY OF GOVERNMENT-OWNED AUTOMOBILE TO GET MR. CAMPBELL TO THE AIRPORT IN TIME TO CATCH HIS FLIGHT. IT IS FURTHER STATED THAT IT WAS NECESSARY FOR MR. CAMPBELL TO USE THE TIME IN TRANSIT TO BRIEF MR. KINNEY ON A PROJECT JUST COMPLETED AND ON OFFICIAL BUSINESS TO OCCUR IN THE NEXT FEW DAYS.

SUBSEQUENT TO THE DATE THAT MR. CAMPBELL WAS FURNISHED TRANSPORTATION BY MR. KINNEY, IT APPEARS THAT MR. CAMPBELL WAS REQUIRED TO UNDERTAKE A SIMILAR TRIP TO MEET THE REGIONAL ADMINISTRATOR AT THE AIRPORT IN SAN FRANCISCO AND RETURN TO THE REGIONAL OFFICE AT SANTA ROSA. THIS TRIP OCCURRED ON NOVEMBER 9, 1954. IT IS STATED BY MR. CAMPBELL THAT THE REGIONAL ADMINISTRATOR HAD REQUESTED TO BE MET AT THE AIRPORT DUE TO SEVERAL PRESUING MATTERS OF BUSINESS DEMANDING HIS IMMEDIATE ATTENTION WHICH HAD DEVELOPED DURING HIS ABSENCE. IT IS ALSO STATED THAT THE TRIP WAS FOR OFFICIAL BUSINESS TO BRIEF THE REGIONAL ADMINISTRATOR ON OFFICIAL BUSINESS MATTERS PRIOR TO HIS ARRIVAL AT THE REGIONAL OFFICE AND NOT JUST TO TRANSPORT HIM TO HIS OFFICE.

THE DOUBT EXPRESSED BY YOU IN RESPECT OF THE MATTER ARISES FROM THE HOLDING MADE IN 28 COMP. GEN. 332, TO THE EFFECT THAT UNDER THE ACT OF FEBRUARY 14, 1931, AS AMENDED, AN EMPLOYEE MAY NOT BE PAID MILEAGE FOR USE OF A PRIVATELY OWNED AUTOMOBILE IN TRANSPORTING ANOTHER EMPLOYEE ON OFFICIAL BUSINESS WHERE THE OWNER OR OPERATOR THEREOF DID NOT PERFORM OFFICIAL BUSINESS.

THE FOREGOING DECISION WAS RENDERED UNDER THE MILEAGE ACT OF FEBRUARY 14, 1931, WHICH HAS BEEN SUPERSEDED BY SECTION 4 OF THE TRAVEL EXPENSE ACT OF 1949, APPROVED JUNE 9, 1949, 63 STAT. 166. HOWEVER, THE LATER ACT DOES NOT REMOVE THE REQUIREMENT THAT THE TRAVEL BY PRIVATELY OWNED AUTOMOBILE ON A MILEAGE BASIS MUST BE ON "OFFICIAL BUSINESS."

IN VIEW OF THE CERTIFICATION IN BOTH CASES THAT THE TRIPS WERE MADE NOT ONLY FOR THE PURPOSE OF FURNISHING TRANSPORTATION TO THE OFFICIALS IN QUESTION BUT ALSO TO DISCUSS PRESSING BUSINESS MATTERS, IT REASONABLY MAY BE CONCLUDED THAT SUFFICIENT "OFFICIAL BUSINESS" WAS INVOLVED TO ENTITLE THE EMPLOYEES TO REIMBURSEMENT FOR SUCH TRAVEL ON A MILEAGE BASIS.

ACCORDINGLY, THE VOUCHERS ARE RETURNED HEREWITH AND MAY BE CERTIFIED FOR PAYMENT, IF OTHERWISE CORRECT.