B-127756, JUN. 26, 1956

B-127756: Jun 26, 1956

Additional Materials:

Contact:

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

 

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

ROBERTS: RECEIPT IS ACKNOWLEDGED OF YOUR RECENT LETTER (AND ENCLOSURES) ADDRESSED TO THIS OFFICE AND FORWARDED HERE THROUGH CHANNELS BY THE COMMANDING OFFICER. IT IS NOTED THAT YOU CONSISTENTLY HAVE PAID THE REGULAR MONTHLY BILLETING (BOQ) FEE OR SERVICE CHARGE OF $5 PER MONTH. THAT NO RENTAL CHARGES HAVE BEEN PAID FOR GOVERNMENT QUARTERS OCCUPIED DURING THE PERIOD PRIOR TO APRIL 1. THE ENCLOSURES WHICH ACCOMPANIED YOUR LETTER INDICATE THAT YOU WERE NOT REGULARLY BILLED FOR RENTAL WHEN DUE. THAT OFFICIALS AT THE ABOVE-MENTIONED INSTALLATION WERE NOT IN AGREEMENT CONCERNING THE LIABILITY OF RED CROSS EMPLOYEES FOR RENTAL ON ARMY-CONTROLLED QUARTERS WHICH THEY OCCUPIED. 1955 (STATED TO HAVE BEEN RECEIVED BY YOU ON JANUARY 5).

B-127756, JUN. 26, 1956

TO MISS CAROLYN J. ROBERTS:

RECEIPT IS ACKNOWLEDGED OF YOUR RECENT LETTER (AND ENCLOSURES) ADDRESSED TO THIS OFFICE AND FORWARDED HERE THROUGH CHANNELS BY THE COMMANDING OFFICER, FORT BENJAMIN HARRISON, INDIANA, REQUESTING INFORMATION AS TO WHETHER YOU MAY BE RELIEVED FROM PAYMENT OF AN AMOUNT FOUND DUE THE UNITED STATES COVERING RENTAL CHARGES FOR GOVERNMENT QUARTERS OCCUPIED BY YOU AT FORT BENJAMIN HARRISON DURING THE PERIOD FROM APRIL 26, 1954, THROUGH APRIL 15, 1955, WHILE AN EMPLOYEE OF THE AMERICAN NATIONAL RED CROSS.

IT IS NOTED THAT YOU CONSISTENTLY HAVE PAID THE REGULAR MONTHLY BILLETING (BOQ) FEE OR SERVICE CHARGE OF $5 PER MONTH, BUT THAT NO RENTAL CHARGES HAVE BEEN PAID FOR GOVERNMENT QUARTERS OCCUPIED DURING THE PERIOD PRIOR TO APRIL 1, 1955. THE ENCLOSURES WHICH ACCOMPANIED YOUR LETTER INDICATE THAT YOU WERE NOT REGULARLY BILLED FOR RENTAL WHEN DUE, AND THAT OFFICIALS AT THE ABOVE-MENTIONED INSTALLATION WERE NOT IN AGREEMENT CONCERNING THE LIABILITY OF RED CROSS EMPLOYEES FOR RENTAL ON ARMY-CONTROLLED QUARTERS WHICH THEY OCCUPIED. HOWEVER, BY LETTER DATED JANUARY 4, 1955 (STATED TO HAVE BEEN RECEIVED BY YOU ON JANUARY 5), YOU WERE NOTIFIED OF A REVISION IN RENTAL RATES TO BE CHARGED FOR GOVERNMENT-CONTROLLED QUARTERS EFFECTIVE JANUARY 1, 1955. PARAGRAPH 3 OF THE LETTER, READS AS FOLLOWS:

"FOR RED CROSS PERSONNEL THIS CONSTITUTES AN INCREASE OF $19.00 RENTAL AND $1.25 WATER UTILITY RATE PER INDIVIDUAL PER MONTH, SINCE, PRIOR TO 1 JANUARY 1955 NO RENTAL OR UTILITY HAS BEEN CHARGED RED CROSS PERSONNEL.'

THEREAFTER, BY LETTER DATED APRIL 26, 1955, YOU RECEIVED NOTICE FROM THE COMMANDING OFFICER, HEADQUARTERS, FORT BENJAMIN HARRISON, THAT AS A RESULT OF THE PROVISIONS OF THE ACT OF JULY 17, 1953 (PUBLIC LAW 131), 67 STAT. 178, THE SUM OF $169.80 WAS DUE THE UNITED STATES FOR RENTAL OF QUARTERS, AS FOLLOWS:

CHART

PERIOD MONTHLY RATE RENTAL

APRIL 26, 1954 THROUGH

JANUARY 31, 1955 $13.00 $119.17

FEBRUARY 1 THROUGH

APRIL 15, 1955 20.25 50.63

$169.80

SECTIONS 1 AND 2 OF THE ABOVE-CITED ACT READ, IN PERTINENT PART, AS FOLLOWS:

"* * * THAT WHENEVER THE PRESIDENT SHALL FIND THE COOPERATION AND USE OF THE AMERICAN NATIONAL RED CROSS WITH THE ARMED FORCES TO BE NECESSARY, HE IS AUTHORIZED TO ACCEPT THE ASSISTANCE TENDERED BY THE SAID RED CROSS, AND TO EMPLOY THE SAME UNDER THE ARMED FORCES. * * *

"SEC. 2. WHENEVER THE SAID RED CROSS COOPERATION AND ASSISTANCE WITH THE ARMED FORCES SHALL HAVE BEEN ACCEPTED BY THE PRESIDENT, THE PERSONNEL ENTERING UPON THE DUTY SPECIFIED IN THE FIRST SECTION OF THIS ACT MAY * * * BE FURNISHED MEALS AND QUARTERS, PROVIDING THE COST THEREOF IS BORNE BY SUCH PERSONNEL OR BY THE AMERICAN NATIONAL RED CROSS, EXCEPT THAT IN INSTANCES WHERE CIVILIAN EMPLOYEES ARE FURNISHED QUARTERS WITHOUT COST, EMPLOYEES OF THE AMERICAN NATIONAL RED CROSS MAY ALSO BE FURNISHED QUARTERS ON THE SAME BASIS WITHOUT COST * * *.'

DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY REGULATIONS (AR 940-10, DATED AUGUST 30, 1955), PROMULGATED SUBSEQUENT TO THE PASSAGE OF THE CITED STATUTE PROVIDE THAT UNIFORMED, FULL TIME RED CROSS PERSONNEL (INCLUDING FIELD OFFICE ASSISTANTS) ON DUTY WITH THE ARMY ESTABLISHMENT IN THE UNITED STATES MAY BE FURNISHED PUBLIC QUARTERS, WHEN AVAILABLE, IN ACCORDANCE WITH ARMY REGULATION NO. 210-10. HOWEVER, SUCH REGULATION PROVIDES THAT EITHER THE RED CROSS EMPLOYEE OR THE AMERICAN NATIONAL RED CROSS SHALL PAY RENTAL FOR ARMY-CONTROLLED QUARTERS OCCUPIED, SUCH RENTAL RATE TO BE BASED UPON COMPARABILITY OF THE QUARTERS FURNISHED WITH OTHER PRIVATE RENTAL HOUSING IN THE ADJACENT AREA IN ACCORDANCE WITH ARMY REGULATION NO. 210-12.

THE RECORDS OF THIS OFFICE DISCLOSE THAT BASIC RENTAL RATES FOR ARMY- CONTROLLED QUARTERS HAD BEEN ESTABLISHED AND WERE IN EFFECT AT FORT BENJAMIN HARRISON DURING THE INVOLVED PERIOD. MOREOVER, CIVILIAN EMPLOYEES WHO WERE ASSIGNED QUARTERS SIMILAR TO THOSE YOU OCCUPIED AT THAT INSTALLATION WERE CHARGED WITH AND ACTUALLY PAID RENTAL FOR QUARTERS DURING SUCH PERIOD.

ALTHOUGH THE QUESTION OF YOUR INDEBTEDNESS TO THE UNITED STATES HAS NOT BEEN OFFICIALLY REFERRED TO THIS OFFICE FOR CONSIDERATION, IN VIEW OF THE LAW AND PERTINENT REGULATIONS, AND SINCE THE COMMANDING OFFICER AT FORT BENJAMIN HARRISON IS VESTED WITH NO DISCRETIONARY AUTHORITY TO IGNORE OR WAIVE THE PROVISIONS OF A VALID STATUTE, IT NECESSARILY FOLLOWS THAT YOU ARE LEGALLY OBLIGATED FOR RENTAL AS INDICATED ABOVE DURING THE INVOLVED PERIOD. ANY AMOUNT WHICH MAY HAVE BEEN SUBSEQUENTLY PAID FOR RENTAL INVOLVING ANY PORTION OF THE ABOVE MENTIONED PERIOD SHOULD, OF COURSE, BE DEDUCTED FROM THE AMOUNT ORIGINALLY DETERMINED TO BE DUE THE UNITED STATES.