B-126945, MAY 16, 1956

B-126945: May 16, 1956

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UPON COMPLETION OF WHICH THEY WERE TO RETURN TO THEIR PROPER ORGANIZATIONS AND STATIONS. SUCH ORDERS WERE AMENDED BY ORDERS DATED MAY 27. THE OFFICER'S RETURN TRAVEL WAS DIRECTED IN ORDERS OF SEPTEMBER 6. THE RECORD SHOWS THAT BOTH GOVERNMENT QUARTERS AND RATIONS WERE AVAILABLE ATTHULE. THE ORDERS IN THIS CASE DIRECTING WARRANT OFFICER TOWNSEND TO PERFORM TEMPORARY DUTY AT THULE ARE SIMILAR TO THE ORDERS ISSUED. IT WAS POINTED OUT IN DECISION OF JUNE 10. UNLESS SUCH DUTY IS REGARDED AS FIELD DUTY OR OTHER SIMILAR ACTIVITY. IT WAS POINTED OUT THAT THE RECORD DID NOT DISCLOSE THE NATURE OF THE TEMPORARY DUTY. THAT WHILE SUCH DUTY WAS REFERRED TO AS A RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT PROJECT. IT WAS CONCLUDED THAT THE AIR BASE AT THULE IS A PERMANENT MILITARY INSTALLATION AND.

B-126945, MAY 16, 1956

TO LIEUTENANT COLONEL E. J. SKEATH, FC, FINANCE AND ACCOUNTING OFFICER, DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY:

BY SECOND INDORSEMENT OF FEBRUARY 8, 1956, THE CHIEF OF FINANCE FORWARDED YOUR LETTER OF JANUARY 18, 1956, REQUESTING AN ADVANCE DECISION AS TO THE LEGALITY OF PAYING PER DIEM TO WARRANT OFFICER JAMES R. TOWNSEND ON VOUCHER COVERING THE PERIOD APRIL 26, 1954, TO SEPTEMBER 16, 1954, IN CONNECTION WITH TRAVEL AND TEMPORARY DUTY PERFORMED BY HIM PURSUANT TO ORDERS OF APRIL 23, 1954.

THE ORDERS OF APRIL 23, 1954, ISSUED BY HEADQUARTERS, TRANSPORTATION RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT COMMAND, FORT EUSTIS, VIRGINIA, DIRECTED WARRANT OFFICER TOWNSEND AND OTHER ARMY MEMBERS, CONSTITUTING SHIPMENT NO. 2267- AI, TO PROCEED ON OR ABOUT APRIL 26, 1954, TO THULE, GREENLAND, ON TEMPORARY DUTY FOR APPROXIMATELY NINE MONTHS FOR THE PURPOSE OF TRANSPORTATION CORPS ACTIVITIES, UPON COMPLETION OF WHICH THEY WERE TO RETURN TO THEIR PROPER ORGANIZATIONS AND STATIONS. SUCH ORDERS WERE AMENDED BY ORDERS DATED MAY 27, 1954, ALSO ISSUED BY HEADQUARTERS AT FORT EUSTIS, VIRGINIA, TO ADD "ATCH TO THE 373RD TRANS PORT COMD C FOR ADMIN AND LOG SUPPORT" AND FURTHER AMENDED TO ADD "NO PER DIEM AUTH WHILE AT THULE, GREENLAND.' THE OFFICER'S RETURN TRAVEL WAS DIRECTED IN ORDERS OF SEPTEMBER 6, 1954. THE RECORD SHOWS THAT BOTH GOVERNMENT QUARTERS AND RATIONS WERE AVAILABLE ATTHULE.

YOU ASK WHAT LEGAL EFFECT THE AMENDING ORDER OF MAY 27, 1954, HAS IN RESTRICTING PAYMENT OF PER DIEM. ALSO, YOU REFER TO OUR DECISION OF JUNE 10, 1955, B-123853, TO LIEUTENANT COLONEL T. ELLERBE, FC, CONCERNING THE PAYMENT OF PER DIEM TO CAPTAIN CURTIS E. JENNINGS FOR TEMPORARY DUTY PERFORMED AT THULE UNDER SIMILAR CIRCUMSTANCES.

THE ORDERS IN THIS CASE DIRECTING WARRANT OFFICER TOWNSEND TO PERFORM TEMPORARY DUTY AT THULE ARE SIMILAR TO THE ORDERS ISSUED--- BY THE SAME COMMAND--- IN THE CASE OF CAPTAIN JENNINGS CONSIDERED IN OUR DECISION OF JUNE 10, 1955, B-123853. BOTH OFFICERS PERFORMED TEMPORARY DUTY AT THULE AT LEAST DURING PART OF THE SAME PERIOD. IT WAS POINTED OUT IN DECISION OF JUNE 10, 1955, THAT PARAGRAPH 4250-3 OF THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS CONTEMPLATE PAYMENT OF PER DIEM FOR TEMPORARY DUTY TRAVEL, INCLUDING TRAVEL BY TROOPS FOR THE PERFORMANCE OF TEMPORARY DUTY, UNLESS SUCH DUTY IS REGARDED AS FIELD DUTY OR OTHER SIMILAR ACTIVITY. ALSO, IT WAS POINTED OUT THAT THE RECORD DID NOT DISCLOSE THE NATURE OF THE TEMPORARY DUTY, AND THAT WHILE SUCH DUTY WAS REFERRED TO AS A RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT PROJECT, IT DID NOT APPEAR TO BE DUTY IN CONNECTION WITH CONSTRUCTION ACTIVITIES, CARGO LOADING AND UNLOADING, ETC., MENTIONED IN PARAGRAPH 2B (2) OF SPECIAL REGULATIONS 35-3080-5, DATED JANUARY 26, 1954. IT WAS CONCLUDED THAT THE AIR BASE AT THULE IS A PERMANENT MILITARY INSTALLATION AND, INSOFAR AS THE RECORD DISCLOSED, THE TEMPORARY DUTY INVOLVED WAS PERFORMED UNDER THE SAME CIRCUMSTANCES AS ORDINARY TEMPORARY DUTY AT A MILITARY STATION.

UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF FOOTNOTE Z TO THE TABLE OF RATES OF PER DIEM PRESCRIBED IN PARAGRAPH 4205-6, JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS, ONLY THE SECRETARY OF THE DEPARTMENT, OR THE CHIEF OF AN APPROPRIATE BUREAU OR STAFF AGENCY OF THE HEADQUARTERS OF THE DEPARTMENT CONCERNED TO WHOM SUCH AUTHORITY IS DELEGATED, CAN RESTRICT PAYMENT OF THE PER DIEM PRESCRIBED IN THE REGULATIONS. HEADQUARTERS, TRANSPORTATION RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT COMMAND, FORT EUSTIS, VIRGINIA, DID NOT HAVE THAT AUTHORITY AND THE PROVISION BARRING PAYMENT OF PER DIEM WHILE AT THULE, GREENLAND, WAS WITHOUT EFFECT. WHILE THE SUBMITTED PAPERS INDICATE THAT THERE IS A DIFFERENCE OF OPINION BETWEEN HEADQUARTERS, TRANSPORTATION ARCTIC GROUP, 9223 D TU, APO 23, NEW YORK, NEW YORK, AND HEADQUARTERS, TRANSPORTATION RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT COMMAND, FORT EUSTIS, VIRGINIA, AS TO WHETHER THE TYPE OF TEMPORARY DUTY PERFORMED AT THULE WARRANTS THE PAYMENT OF PER DIEM, THERE SEEMS TO BE AN AGREEMENT THAT THE UNIT WAS A RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT ACTIVITY. HENCE, IT REASONABLY APPEARS THAT THE TYPE OF DUTY PERFORMED BY WARRANT OFFICER TOWNSEND AT THE AIR BASE AT THULE INVOLVED TEMPORARY DUTY AT AN INSTALLATION OF THE UNIFORMED SERVICES SO AS TO ENTITLE HIM TO PER DIEM. B-123853, JUNE 10, 1955.

PAYMENT ON THE VOUCHER IS AUTHORIZED ACCORDINGLY, IF OTHERWISE CORRECT. THE VOUCHER AND SUPPORTING PAPERS ARE ENCLOSED.