B-128500, AUG. 29, 1956

B-128500: Aug 29, 1956

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WAC: FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF JUNE 21. YOU WERE TRANSFERRED FROM FORT SHERIDAN. YOU WERE ASSIGNED TO FORT GEORGE G. YOU THEN ARRANGED TO HAVE IT TRANSPORTED TO THE NEW LOCATION ON AUGUST 1 AND 2. WAS DISALLOWED UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF PARAGRAPH 10010. STATING THAT THOSE PROVISIONS WERE WELL KNOWN TO YOU WHEN YOU SUBMITTED THE CLAIM. YOUR CONTENTION IS IN EFFECT. IS DISCRIMINATORY. THAT IT SERVES TO DENY THE BENEFITS OF THE LAW TO CERTAIN INDIVIDUALS WHO ARE EQUALLY ENTITLED TO ITS BENEFITS. THERE IS NO ABSOLUTE RIGHT TO A TRAILER ALLOWANCE. ARE CONTAINED IN CHAPTER 10 OF JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS. PARAGRAPH 10010 OF THAT CHAPTER PROVIDES THAT A MEMBER WITHOUT DEPENDENTS WHO IS OTHERWISE QUALIFIED TO RECEIVE THE TRAILER ALLOWANCE WILL NOT BE ENTITLED TO THAT ALLOWANCE IN THE ABSENCE OF A DETERMINATION IN WRITING BY THE ORDER-ISSUING AUTHORITY.

B-128500, AUG. 29, 1956

TO MAJOR MARGARET A. MAXWELL, WAC:

FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF JUNE 21, 1956, REQUESTING REVIEW OF THE SETTLEMENT OF MAY 11, 1956, WHICH DISALLOWED YOUR CLAIM FOR TRAILER ALLOWANCE FOR THE DISTANCE FROM INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA, TO ARNOLD, MARYLAND.

BY ORDERS DATED OCTOBER 29, 1954, YOU WERE TRANSFERRED FROM FORT SHERIDAN, ILLINOIS, TO FORT MCCLELLAN, ALABAMA, FOR THE PURPOSE OF ATTENDING A COURSE OF INSTRUCTION. UPON COMPLETION OF THE COURSE, BY ORDERS DATED MAY 16, 1955, YOU WERE ASSIGNED TO FORT GEORGE G. MEADE, MARYLAND, FOR DUTY. THE RECORD INDICATES THAT YOU PURCHASED A HOUSE TRAILER IN SEPTEMBER 1954, WHILE STATIONED AT FORT SHERIDAN; THAT YOU LIVED IN IT UNTIL YOUR TRANSFER TO FORT MCCLELLAN, AND THAT YOU THEN HAD IT TRANSPORTED TO YOUR BROTHER'S RESIDENCE IN INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA, WHERE IT REMAINED UNTIL AFTER YOU ARRIVED AT FORT MEADE. YOU THEN ARRANGED TO HAVE IT TRANSPORTED TO THE NEW LOCATION ON AUGUST 1 AND 2, 1955, AT A COST OF $158.88. YOUR CLAIM FOR $117.40, COMPUTED ON THE BASIS OF 20 CENTS PER MILE FOR 587 MILES, WAS DISALLOWED UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF PARAGRAPH 10010, JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS.

YOU REQUEST REVIEW OF THAT DISALLOWANCE, STATING THAT THOSE PROVISIONS WERE WELL KNOWN TO YOU WHEN YOU SUBMITTED THE CLAIM. YOUR CONTENTION IS IN EFFECT, THAT PARAGRAPH 10010, JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS, IS DISCRIMINATORY; THAT IT CONTAINS RESTRICTIONS NOT PRESCRIBED IN PUBLIC LAW 20, 84TH CONGRESS, AND THAT IT SERVES TO DENY THE BENEFITS OF THE LAW TO CERTAIN INDIVIDUALS WHO ARE EQUALLY ENTITLED TO ITS BENEFITS.

PUBLIC LAW 20 (ACT OF MARCH 31, 1955, 69 STAT. 22), AMENDED SECTION 303 (C) OF THE CAREER COMPENSATION ACT OF 1949, 63 STAT. 814, TO PROVIDE, IN PERTINENT PART, THAT "IN LIEU OF TRANSPORTATION OF BAGGAGE AND HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS," A MEMBER OF A UNIFORMED SERVICE WHO TRANSPORTS A HOUSE TRAILER WITHIN THE CONTINENTAL UNITED STATES FOR USE AS A RESIDENCE AND WHO WOULD OTHERWISE BE ENTITLED TO TRANSPORTATION OF BAGGAGE AND HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS SHALL, UNDER REGULATIONS PRESCRIBED BY THE SECRETARY CONCERNED, BE ENTITLED TO A REASONABLE ALLOWANCE, NOT TO EXCEED 20 CENTS PER MILE OR TO THE AUTHORIZED DISLOCATION ALLOWANCE, WHICHEVER HE SHALL ELECT. THUS, UNDER THE PLAIN TERMS OF THE LAW ITSELF, THERE IS NO ABSOLUTE RIGHT TO A TRAILER ALLOWANCE, SUCH RIGHT BEING SUBJECT TO REGULATION WITHOUT WHICH THE STATUTE REMAINS INOPERATIVE.

CONTROLLING REGULATIONS, PROMULGATED BY THE SECRETARIES OF THE VARIOUS DEPARTMENTS OF THE UNIFORMED SERVICES, ARE CONTAINED IN CHAPTER 10 OF JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS. PARAGRAPH 10010 OF THAT CHAPTER PROVIDES THAT A MEMBER WITHOUT DEPENDENTS WHO IS OTHERWISE QUALIFIED TO RECEIVE THE TRAILER ALLOWANCE WILL NOT BE ENTITLED TO THAT ALLOWANCE IN THE ABSENCE OF A DETERMINATION IN WRITING BY THE ORDER-ISSUING AUTHORITY, OR HIS DESIGNATED REPRESENTATIVE, TO THE EFFECT THAT THE NATURE OF THE MEMBER'S DUTY OR LACK OF GOVERNMENT QUARTERS AT THE NEW STATION REQUIRES THE MEMBER TO PROCURE HOUSING AT PERSONAL EXPENSE. IN OTHER WORDS, THE ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICE HAS PREPARED THE REGULATIONS ON THE BASIS THAT THE ALLOWANCE WOULD BE PAID ONLY WHEN THE TRAILER IS REQUIRED AT THE NEW STATION FOR THE MEMBER'S USE. IN KEEPING WITH THAT CONCEPT OF THE LAW, THE REGULATIONS REQUIRE A CERTIFICATE OF NECESSITY BEFORE PAYMENT IS AUTHORIZED TO A MEMBER WITHOUT DEPENDENTS, SUCH MEMBERS AT MANY STATIONS BEING FURNISHED GOVERNMENT QUARTERS. WE DO NOT DISAGREE WITH THAT INTERPRETATION OF THE LAW AND SINCE YOUR CLAIM IS NOT SUPPORTED BY A STATEMENT OF THE TYPE REQUIRED BY THE REGULATIONS, THERE IS NO LEGAL BASIS FOR ITS ALLOWANCE ON THE PRESENT RECORD. ACCORDINGLY, THE SETTLEMENT OF MAY 11, 1956, IS SUSTAINED.