B-123328, MAY 20, 1955

B-123328: May 20, 1955

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THE DISALLOWANCE WAS FOR TWO REASONS: FIRST. THAT THE FARES IN EXCESS OF $3 ARE REQUIRED TO BE SUPPORTED BY RECEIPTS. THE LACK OF INFORMATION AS TO THE POINTS BETWEEN WHICH TRAVEL WAS PERFORMED IN BALTIMORE. PARAGRAPH 4 THEREOF RELATES TO THE USE OF TAXICABS IN SITUATIONS THAT ARE WITHIN THE PURVIEW OF PARAGRAPH 8(A) OF THE STANDARIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS AND STATES THAT RECEIPTS WILL BE REQUIRED FOR FARES OF $5 AND OVER. OR OTHER TERMINAL WILL BE ALLOWED. REIMBURSEMENT MAY BE ALLOWED FOR THE ACTUAL TAXICAB FARE PLUS TIPS OF 10 CENTS WHERE THE FARE IS $1 OR LESS OR 10 PERCENT OF THE FARE INCREASED TO THE NEXT MULTIPLE OF 5 WHERE THE FARE EXCEEDS $1. "11. OR OTHER SUCH CONVEYANCE WILL BE ALLOWED IF THE USE OF SUCH FACILITIES IS AUTHORIZED OR APPROVED AS ADVANTAGEOUS TO THE GOVERNMENT WHENEVER THE EMPLOYEE OR OTHERS RENDERING SERVICE TO THE GOVERNMENT IS ENGAGED ON OFFICIAL BUSINESS WITHIN OR OUTSIDE HIS DESIGNATED POST OF DUTY.

B-123328, MAY 20, 1955

PRECIS-UNAVAILABLE

MR. SOLOMON GOLDFEIN:

YOUR LETTER OF FEBRUARY 5, 1955, REQUESTS REVIEW OF OUR CLAIMS DIVISION SETTLEMENT OF JANUARY 24, 1955, TO THE EXTENT THAT IT DISALLOWED TAXICAB FARES CLAIMED BY YOU IN EXCESS OF $3 EACH FOR ONE WAY TRIPS AS AN EMPLOYEE OF THE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY, ENGINEER RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT LABORATORIES, FORT BELVOIR, VIRGINIA. YOU HAD CLAIMED TAXICAB FARES FROM FALLS CHURCH, VIRGINIA, TO UNION STATION, WASHINGTON, D. C., AND RETURN, FEBRUARY 11, 1954, AMOUNTING TO $9.50, AND IN BALTIMORE, MARYLAND, THE SAME DAY FROM THE RAILROAD STATION TO PLACE OF BUSINESS, AND RETURN, AMOUNTING TO $8.50. THE DISALLOWANCE WAS FOR TWO REASONS: FIRST, THAT THE FARES IN EXCESS OF $3 ARE REQUIRED TO BE SUPPORTED BY RECEIPTS; SECOND, THE LACK OF INFORMATION AS TO THE POINTS BETWEEN WHICH TRAVEL WAS PERFORMED IN BALTIMORE.

YOU CALL ATTENTION TO A DOCUMENT ENTITLED "CIVILIAN TRAVEL INFORMATION," AND REFER TO THE DOCUMENT AS A REGULATION OF THE ENGINEER RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT LABORATORIES. PARAGRAPH 4 THEREOF RELATES TO THE USE OF TAXICABS IN SITUATIONS THAT ARE WITHIN THE PURVIEW OF PARAGRAPH 8(A) OF THE STANDARIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS AND STATES THAT RECEIPTS WILL BE REQUIRED FOR FARES OF $5 AND OVER.

PARAGRAPHS 8A., 11 AND 80C. OF THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS, PROVIDE -

"A. THE USUAL TAXICAB FARES FROM STATION, WHARF, OR OTHER TERMINAL TO EITHER PLACE OF ABODE OR PLACE OF BUSINESS AND FROM EITHER PLACE OF ABODE OR PLACE OF BUSINESS TO STATION, WHARF, OR OTHER TERMINAL WILL BE ALLOWED. (SEE PAR. 11.) FOR THE PURPOSE OF THIS SUBPARAGRAPH THE TERM 'PLACE OF ABODE' MAY BE CONSTRUED TO INCLUDE ANY POINT WITHIN REASONABLE DISTANCE FROM WHICH THE EMPLOYEE CONCERNED COMMUTES DAILY TO HIS OFFICIAL POST OF DUTY. REIMBURSEMENT MAY BE ALLOWED FOR THE ACTUAL TAXICAB FARE PLUS TIPS OF 10 CENTS WHERE THE FARE IS $1 OR LESS OR 10 PERCENT OF THE FARE INCREASED TO THE NEXT MULTIPLE OF 5 WHERE THE FARE EXCEEDS $1.

"11. SPECIAL CONVEYANCE. - THE HIRE OF BOAT, AUTOMOBILE, TAXICAB, AIRCRAFT, LIVERY, OR OTHER SUCH CONVEYANCE WILL BE ALLOWED IF THE USE OF SUCH FACILITIES IS AUTHORIZED OR APPROVED AS ADVANTAGEOUS TO THE GOVERNMENT WHENEVER THE EMPLOYEE OR OTHERS RENDERING SERVICE TO THE GOVERNMENT IS ENGAGED ON OFFICIAL BUSINESS WITHIN OR OUTSIDE HIS DESIGNATED POST OF DUTY. IN THE CASE OF HIRE OF TAXICABS, REIMBURSEMENT MAY BE ALLOWED FOR THE ACTUAL FARE PLUS TIPS OF 10 CENTS WHERE THE FARE IS $1 OR LESS OR 10 PERCENT OF THE FARE INCREASED TO THE NEXT MULTIPLE OF 5 WHERE THE FARE EXCEEDS $1.

"80. RECEIPTS REQUIRED. - RECEIPTS, WHEN PRACTICABLE TO OBTAIN THEM, WILL BE REQUIRED FOR:

"C. HIRE OF SPECIAL CONVEYANCE SUCH AS LIVERY, BOAT, AUTOMOBILE (NOT TAXICABS LOCALLY), AIRCRAFT, ETC., WHERE THE AMOUNT INVOLVED IS IN EXCESS OF $3. (SEE PAR. 11.)"

THE RECORD SHOWS THAT THE ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICE UNDERTOOK TO VERIFY THE CORRECTNESS OF THE $4.75 RATE CLAIMED BY YOU FOR USE OF A TAXICAB BETWEEN YOUR RESIDENCE, FALLS CHURCH, VIRGINIA, AND UNION STATION, WASHINGTON, D. C., AS WELL AS THE $4.25 RATE CLAIMED FOR USE OF A TAXICAB BETWEEN THE RAILROAD TERMINAL IN BALTIMORE, MARYLAND, AND THE TEMPORARY DUTY POINT IN BALTIMORE. THE ADMINISTRATIVE REPORT SHOWS A TAXICAB FARE OF $3.50 BETWEEN YOUR RESIDENCE AND UNION STATION "BASED ON LOCAL QUOTED RATES," AND AN ESTIMATED RATE OF $3 FOR TAXICAB TRAVEL IN BALTIMORE.

BY 2ND INDORSEMENT, ENGINEER RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT LABORATORIES, FORT BELVOIR, DATED DECEMBER 8, 1954, IT IS STATED THAT YOU SAY THE PLACE OF BUSINESS WAS IN THE CITY OF BALTIMORE BUT THAT YOU DO NOT KNOW THE APPROXIMATE DISTANCE BETWEEN IT AND THE RAILROAD STATION AND COULD ONLY HAZARD A GUESS AT THAT TIME. FURTHERMORE, IT IS STATED IN THE INDORSEMENT THAT THE USE OF TAXICABS AS A SPECIAL CONVEYANCE HAS NOT BEEN AUTHORIZED OR APPROVED. 31 COMP. GEN. 304.

IN VIEW OF THE DISCREPANCIES BETWEEN THE TAXICAB RATES CLAIMED AND THOSE REPORTED ADMINISTRATIVELY AS WELL AS THE ABSENCE OF MORE DEFINITE INFORMATION AS TO THE PLACE OF TEMPORARY DUTY, WE WOULD NOT BE JUSTIFIED IN AUTHORIZING ANY ADDITIONAL PAYMENT ON YOUR CLAIM IN THE ABSENCE OF RECEIPTS OR OTHER DOCUMENTARY EVIDENCE IN SUPPORT OF THE FARES CLAIMED.

ACCORDINGLY, UPON THE PRESENT RECORD, THE DISALLOWANCE OF YOUR CLAIM TO THE EXTENT INDICATED WAS PROPER AND UPON REVIEW THE SETTLEMENT IS SUSTAINED.