B-129813, DEC. 6, 1956

B-129813: Dec 6, 1956

Additional Materials:

Contact:

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

 

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

THE RECORD SHOWS THAT WHILE YOU WERE ASSIGNED TO DUTY OVERSEAS YOUR WIFE AND CHILDREN WERE AUTHORIZED BY ORDERS OF MAY 16. TO RETURN TO THE UNITED STATES AND SHIPMENT OF YOUR HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS ALSO WAS AUTHORIZED TO THE PORT OF DEBARKATION IN THE UNITED STATES. THEY WERE PLACED IN GOVERNMENT STORAGE FOR A PERIOD OF SIX MONTHS. THEY WERE PLACED IN COMMERCIAL STORAGE. AS A RESULT YOU WERE REQUIRED TO PAY STORAGE CHARGES IN THE AMOUNT OF $60.96 FOR THE PERIOD FEBRUARY 3 TO MARCH 2. DUE TO THE FACT THAT YOUR RETURN TO THE UNITED STATES WAS DELAYED BECAUSE OF AN ERROR ON THE PART OF GOVERNMENT PERSONNEL IN REQUESTING YOUR REASSIGNMENT TO THE UNITED STATES. THE STORAGE OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS OF MEMBERS OF THE UNIFORMED SERVICES IS GOVERNED BY PARAGRAPH 8006 OF THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS PROMULGATED PURSUANT TO SECTION 303/C) OF THE CAREER COMPENSATION ACT OF 1949.

B-129813, DEC. 6, 1956

TO SERGEANT MAX F. SINGER:

YOUR LETTER OF OCTOBER 25, 1956, REQUESTS REVIEW OF OUR SETTLEMENT DATED OCTOBER 18, 1956, WHICH DISALLOWED YOUR CLAIM FOR REIMBURSEMENT IN THE AMOUNT OF $60.96 REPRESENTING THE COST OF STORAGE OF YOUR HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS FOR THE PERIOD FEBRUARY 3 TO MARCH 2, 1956.

THE RECORD SHOWS THAT WHILE YOU WERE ASSIGNED TO DUTY OVERSEAS YOUR WIFE AND CHILDREN WERE AUTHORIZED BY ORDERS OF MAY 16, 1955, TO RETURN TO THE UNITED STATES AND SHIPMENT OF YOUR HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS ALSO WAS AUTHORIZED TO THE PORT OF DEBARKATION IN THE UNITED STATES. UPON ARRIVAL OF THE EFFECTS AT THE BROOKLYN PORT OF DEBARKATION, THEY WERE PLACED IN GOVERNMENT STORAGE FOR A PERIOD OF SIX MONTHS. SINCE YOU FAILED TO MAKE ARRANGEMENTS FOR THE DISPOSITION OF THE EFFECTS AT THE END OF SUCH PERIOD, THEY WERE PLACED IN COMMERCIAL STORAGE. AS A RESULT YOU WERE REQUIRED TO PAY STORAGE CHARGES IN THE AMOUNT OF $60.96 FOR THE PERIOD FEBRUARY 3 TO MARCH 2, 1956. YOU NOW REQUEST REIMBURSEMENT OF THAT AMOUNT.

YOU SAY YOU DID NOT PICK UP YOUR HOUSEHOLD GOODS BEFORE FEBRUARY 3, 1956, DUE TO THE FACT THAT YOUR RETURN TO THE UNITED STATES WAS DELAYED BECAUSE OF AN ERROR ON THE PART OF GOVERNMENT PERSONNEL IN REQUESTING YOUR REASSIGNMENT TO THE UNITED STATES, AND YOU CONTEND YOU SHOULD NOT BE PENALIZED FOR THE ERROR OF SOMEONE ELSE.

THE STORAGE OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS OF MEMBERS OF THE UNIFORMED SERVICES IS GOVERNED BY PARAGRAPH 8006 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/D) OF THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS PROVIDES:

"D. TIME LIMIT. * * * TEMPORARY STORAGE HEREIN AUTHORIZED WHETHER IN A GOVERNMENT OR COMMERCIAL FACILITY WILL NOT EXCEED SIX MONTHS IN CONNECTION WITH ONE PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION OR UPON DECEASE.'

UNDER THIS REGULATION THE GOVERNMENT MAY PAY STORAGE CHARGES OR FURNISH TEMPORARY STORAGE FOR A PERIOD NOT TO EXCEED SIX MONTHS, THE MEMBER BEING RESPONSIBLE FOR THE COST OF ANY STORAGE IN EXCESS OF THAT PERIOD. THIS IS SO EVEN THOUGH THE STORAGE CHARGES MAY HAVE BEEN INCURRED AS THE RESULT OF AN ERROR OF GOVERNMENT PERSONNEL. IT IS WELL ESTABLISHED THAT, IN THE ABSENCE OF A STATUTE SO PROVIDING, THE GOVERNMENT ITSELF IS NOT LIABLE FOR LOSS OR DAMAGE RESULTING FROM THE NEGLIGENT ACTS OR OMISSIONS OF DUTY OF THE OFFICERS OR AGENTS EMPLOYED IN THE PUBLIC SERVICE. SEE ROBERTSON V. SICHEL, 127 U.S. 507, 515; 19 COMP. GEN. 503. SINCE THE GOVERNMENT PROVIDED FOR SIX MONTHS' STORAGE OF YOUR HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS, YOU HAVE RECEIVED THE MAXIMUM AMOUNT THE REGULATION ALLOWS TO A MEMBER FOR STORAGE IN THESE CIRCUMSTANCES.

ACCORDINGLY, THE SETTLEMENT OF OCTOBER 18, 1956, WAS CORRECT AND IS SUSTAINED.