B-126149, FEB. 7, 1956

B-126149: Feb 7, 1956

Additional Materials:

Contact:

Edda Emmanuelli Perez
(202) 512-2853
EmmanuelliPerezE@gao.gov

 

Office of Public Affairs
(202) 512-4800
youngc1@gao.gov

HECK WAS APPOINTED AS AN EXPERT AT $41.52 PER DIEM. THE APPOINTMENT WAS EXTENDED THROUGH OCTOBER 5. TRAVEL ORDERS WERE ISSUED INDICATING THAT TRAVEL WOULD BE PERFORMED BETWEEN NEW ORLEANS. OTHERWISE WAS ON DUTY IN WASHINGTON UNTIL AUGUST 28. WE HELD QUOTING FROM THE SYLLABUS: "CONSULTANTS AND EXPERTS WHO ARE HIRED ON AN INTERMITTENT WHEN ACTUALLY- EMPLOYED BASIS. HECK'S SERVICES WERE RENDERED ON A FULL-TIME BASIS AND COULD NOT PROPERLY BE DESCRIBED AS INTERMITTENT.

B-126149, FEB. 7, 1956

TO MR. CLIFTON G. HALL, AUTHORIZED CERTIFYING OFFICER, DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE:

YOUR LETTER OF NOVEMBER 18, 1955, REQUESTS OUR DECISION AS TO WHETHER YOU MAY CERTIFY FOR PAYMENT THE VOUCHER THEREWITH TRANSMITTED FOR $396.31 IN FAVOR OF DR. HAROLD J. HECK, AN EMPLOYEE OF THE BUREAU OF FOREIGN COMMERCE, REPRESENTING PER DIEM IN LIEU OF SUBSISTENCE FROM AUGUST 1 TO SEPTEMBER 16, 1955, AND REIMBURSEMENT FOR TRANSPORTATION CHARGES ON ONE FOOT LOCKER AND ONE CARTON OF BOOKS BETWEEN WASHINGTON, D.C., AND NEW ORLEANS. THE VOUCHER ALSO SHOWS THE USE OF A GOVERNMENT TRANSPORTATION REQUEST FOR TRANSPORTATION FROM WASHINGTON, D.C., TO NEW ORLEANS, AT A COST OF $63.95.

DR. HECK WAS APPOINTED AS AN EXPERT AT $41.52 PER DIEM, WHEN ACTUALLY EMPLOYED, UNDER AUTHORITY OF 5 U.S.C. 55 (A) WITH HEADQUARTERS AT NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA, FOR SERVICES WITH THE BUREAU OF FOREIGN COMMERCE FOR A PERIOD NOT TO EXCEED THREE MONTHS WITH A SPECIFIED TOUR OF DUTY FROM 8:30 A.M. TO 5:00 P.M., MONDAY THROUGH FRIDAY. THE APPOINTMENT WAS EXTENDED THROUGH OCTOBER 5, 1955, WITH COMPENSATION CHANGED TO $44.64 PER DIEM ON JULY 18, 1955, AND ACTUALLY TERMINATED SEPTEMBER 20, 1955. TRAVEL ORDERS WERE ISSUED INDICATING THAT TRAVEL WOULD BE PERFORMED BETWEEN NEW ORLEANS, HIS HEADQUARTERS, AND WASHINGTON, D.C., AS OFTEN AS OFFICIALLY DIRECTED TO CONFER WITH DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE OFFICIALS ON INTERNATIONAL MARKETING PROBLEMS. DR. HECK LEFT NEW ORLEANS ON JUNE 5, FOR WASHINGTON, D.C. AND ARRIVED THERE 1:50 A.M. THE NEXT DAY. HE PERFORMED NO SERVICES JUNE 9 TO JUNE 12, BUT OTHERWISE WAS ON DUTY IN WASHINGTON UNTIL AUGUST 28, 1955, AT WHICH TIME HE INDICATES ABSENCE FROM MILITARY DUTY THROUGH SEPTEMBER 11, RETURNING TO DUTY SEPTEMBER 12, THROUGH 16, ON WHICH LATTER DATE HE RETURNED TO NEW ORLEANS, DUTY COMPLETED. PAYMENT HAS BEEN MADE FOR TRAVEL EXPENSES FROM NEW ORLEANS TO WASHINGTON IN JUNE 1955, AND FOR PER DIEM IN LIEU OF SUBSISTENCE FROM JUNE 5 TO JULY 31, EXCLUSIVE OF PERIODS OF ABSENCE MENTIONED ABOVE.

BY DECISION OF AUGUST 12, 1955, TO THE SECRETARY OF COMMERCE, 35 COMP. GEN. 90, WE HELD QUOTING FROM THE SYLLABUS:

"CONSULTANTS AND EXPERTS WHO ARE HIRED ON AN INTERMITTENT WHEN ACTUALLY- EMPLOYED BASIS, BUT SERVE ON A REGULAR CONTINUOUS FULL-TIME BASIS, MAY NOT BE REGARDED AS EMPLOYED INTERMITTENTLY UNDER SECTION 5 OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE EXPENSES ACT OF 1946, AND NEITHER FEDERAL PERSONNEL REGULATION A7-39, WHICH RESTRICTS THE AMOUNT OF INTERMITTENT SERVICE THAT MAY BE RENDERED IN A YEAR, NOR THE MAINTENANCE OF A HOME BY A CONSULTANT AWAY FROM HIS DESIGNATED POST OF DUTY WOULD ENTITLE THEM TO PER DIEM IN LIEU OF SUBSISTENCE.'

IT APPEARS EVIDENT FROM THE SUBMITTED VOUCHER AND PREVIOUSLY PAID VOUCHERS COVERING MONTHS OF JUNE AND JULY 1955, THAT DR. HECK'S SERVICES WERE RENDERED ON A FULL-TIME BASIS AND COULD NOT PROPERLY BE DESCRIBED AS INTERMITTENT. ACCORDINGLY, UPON THE PRESENT RECORD, THE VOUCHER SUBMITTED BY YOU, RETURNED HEREWITH, MAY NOT BE CERTIFIED FOR PAYMENT.

THE EMPLOYEE SHOULD BE REQUIRED TO REFUND THE AMOUNTS OF $254.68, PAID ON BUREAU VOUCHER 6-1941, AND $291, PAID ON BUREAU VOUCHER 6 1940, AS WELL AS $63.95 THE COST FOR TRANSPORTATION BETWEEN WASHINGTON AND NEW ORLEANS, PROCURED ON A GOVERNMENT TRANSPORTATION REQUEST. AUDIT ..END :