B-129608, NOV. 23, 1956

B-129608: Nov 23, 1956

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WHILE HE WAS SERVING WITH THE UNITED STATES AIR FORCE. CONOVER WAS TRANSFERRED TO BERGSTROM AIR FORCE BASE. THE SERVICEMAN'S HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS WERE PICKED UP BY YOUR COMPANY AT HIS RESIDENCE IN ALBUQUERQUE AND HAULED TO YOUR WAREHOUSE IN ALBUQUERQUE FOR STORAGE. YOU NOW CLAIM REIMBURSEMENT FROM THE GOVERNMENT ON THE BASIS THAT THE STORAGE WAS AUTHORIZED BY A GOVERNMENT REPRESENTATIVE AT KIRTLAND AIR FORCE BASE. THE STORAGE OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS OF MEMBERS OF THE UNIFORMED SERVICES IS GOVERNED BY PARAGRAPH 8006-1 OF THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS PROMULGATED PURSUANT TO SECTION 303 (C) OF THE CAREER COMPENSATION ACT OF 1949. PARAGRAPH 8006-1 OF THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS IS AS FOLLOWS: "8006-1 TEMPORARY STORAGE "A.

B-129608, NOV. 23, 1956

TO MR. K. C. MORRIS, PRESIDENT, COMMERCIAL WAREHOUSE COMPANY:

YOUR LETTER DATED OCTOBER 8, 1956, REQUESTS REVIEW OF OUR SETTLEMENT OF OCTOBER 3, 1956, WHICH DISALLOWED YOUR CLAIM FOR $103.40, REPRESENTING CHARGES FOR STORAGE AND HANDLING OF THE HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS OF ALFRED L. CONOVER, DURING THE PERIOD JUNE 30 TO DECEMBER 7, 1954, WHILE HE WAS SERVING WITH THE UNITED STATES AIR FORCE.

BY ORDERS DATED JUNE 21, 1954, HEADQUARTERS, KIRTLAND AIR FORCE BASE, NEW MEXICO, AIRMAN FIRST CLASS ALFRED L. CONOVER WAS TRANSFERRED TO BERGSTROM AIR FORCE BASE, TEXAS. ON JUNE 30, 1954, THE SERVICEMAN'S HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS WERE PICKED UP BY YOUR COMPANY AT HIS RESIDENCE IN ALBUQUERQUE AND HAULED TO YOUR WAREHOUSE IN ALBUQUERQUE FOR STORAGE. AFTER HIS RELEASE FROM ACTIVE DUTY, PURSUANT TO ORDERS OF OCTOBER 6, 1954, THE SERVICEMAN EXECUTED AN APPLICATION REQUESTING THE TRANSPORTATION OFFICER AT KIRTLAND AIR FORCE BASE, NEW MEXICO, TO SHIP HIS HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS FROM STORAGE, TO HIS RESIDENCE IN ALBUQUERQUE, NEW MEXICO. THE APPLICATION PROVIDED THAT HE WOULD PAY ALL HANDLING, STORAGE, OR OTHER COSTS, NOT AUTHORIZED BY REGULATIONS. YOUR COMPANY DELIVERED THE HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS WITHOUT COLLECTING THE STORAGE CHARGES. YOU NOW CLAIM REIMBURSEMENT FROM THE GOVERNMENT ON THE BASIS THAT THE STORAGE WAS AUTHORIZED BY A GOVERNMENT REPRESENTATIVE AT KIRTLAND AIR FORCE BASE.

THE STORAGE OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS OF MEMBERS OF THE UNIFORMED SERVICES IS GOVERNED BY PARAGRAPH 8006-1 OF THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS PROMULGATED PURSUANT TO SECTION 303 (C) OF THE CAREER COMPENSATION ACT OF 1949, 63 STAT. 813, 814. SECTION 303 (C) PROVIDES THAT MEMBERS OF THE UNIFORMED SERVICES SHALL BE ENTITLED IN CONNECTION WITH A CHANGE OF STATION, TO "TRANSPORTATION (INCLUDING PACKING, CRATING, DRAYAGE, TEMPORARY STORAGE, AND UNPACKING) OF BAGGAGE AND HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS" TO AND FROM SUCH LOCATIONS AS MAY BE PRESCRIBED BY THE SECRETARY CONCERNED.

PARAGRAPH 8006-1 OF THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS IS AS FOLLOWS:

"8006-1 TEMPORARY STORAGE

"A. WHEN AUTHORIZED. WHENEVER NECESSARY IN CONNECTION WITH A PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION, BECAUSE OF CONDITIONS BEYOND CONTROL OF THE MEMBER (INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO DIRECTED SURRENDER OF QUARTERS, ARRIVAL OF SHIPMENT AT DESTINATION BEFORE ARRIVAL OF MEMBER, OR NONAVAILABILITY OF HOUSING AT DESTINATION) TEMPORARY STORAGE OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS WITHIN PRESCRIBED WEIGHT ALLOWANCES IS AUTHORIZED AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE. * * *"

IT SHOULD BE NOTED THAT THE ACT AND THE SUBSTANTIALLY IDENTICAL PROVISIONS OF PARAGRAPH 8006-1 OF THE GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS ISSUED PURSUANT TO THE ACT PROVIDE ONLY THAT, IN CONNECTION WITH ACHANGE OF STATION, MILITARY PERSONNEL SHALL BE ENTITLED TO TRANSPORTATION OF THEIR HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS TO AND FROM SUCH LOCATIONS AS MAY BE PRESCRIBED BY THE SECRETARY CONCERNED, OR TO REIMBURSEMENT THEREFORE, ENUMERATING PARENTHETICALLY CERTAIN ITEMS OF EXPENSE ORDINARILY INCURRED INCIDENT TO THE SHIPMENT OF HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS SUCH AS CRATING, PACKING AND UNPACKING, AMONG WHICH IS INCLUDED "TEMPORARY STORAGE.' THUS, IT IS EVIDENT THAT THE CONGRESS INTENDED THAT TEMPORARY STORAGE, AS IN THE CASE OF PACKING AND CRATING, SHOULD BE FURNISHED ONLY WHEN NECESSARY AS AN INCIDENT TO A SHIPMENT CURRENTLY IN PROCESS OR IN IMMEDIATE PROSPECT. 33 COMP. GEN. 470; 32 ID. 410, 413. SINCE THE SERVICEMAN'S HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS WERE PLACED IN STORAGE AND NOT ACTUALLY SHIPPED TO ANY OTHER POINT, IT IS CLEAR THAT NO PART OF THE STORAGE WAS INCIDENT TO TRANSPORTATION OR SHIPMENT OF SUCH EFFECTS.

CONCERNING YOUR CONTENTION THAT YOU ARE ENTITLED TO PAYMENT OF THIS CLAIM BECAUSE YOU RENDERED THIS SERVICE IN GOOD FAITH PURSUANT TO AN ORDER OF A GOVERNMENT REPRESENTATIVE AT KIRTLAND AIR FORCE BASE, YOU ARE ADVISED THAT THE GOVERNMENT CAN NOT BE BOUND BY THE NEGLIGENT OR ERRONEOUS ACTS OF ITS OFFICERS OR AGENTS IN THE ABSENCE OF A STATUTE SO PROVIDING. SEE ROBERTSON V. SICHEL, 127 U.S. 507, 515.

ACCORDINGLY, SINCE NO SHIPMENT OF THE SERVICEMAN'S HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS WAS MADE IN CONNECTION WITH HIS CHANGE OF STATION ORDERS, THERE IS NO AUTHORITY FOR THE PAYMENT FROM GOVERNMENT FUNDS FOR THE STORAGE OF HIS EFFECTS.