B-130212, FEBRUARY 13, 1957, 36 COMP. GEN. 591

B-130212: Feb 13, 1957

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ARE NOT COVERED BY THE ACT OF JUNE 29. HAVE NOT RULED ON THE SPECIFIC POINT. THE ONLY STATEMENT APPEARING IN THE LEGISLATIVE HISTORY CONCERNING SECTION 3 IS CONTAINED IN SENATE REPORT NO. 1866. WHILE THE DEPOSIT OF THE JURY FEES INTO A RECEIPT ACCOUNT OF THE GENERAL FUND CANNOT BE DEEMED TO BE ERRONEOUS WE FEEL THAT THE LANGUAGE OF SECTION 3 OF THE ACT READ IN THE LIGHT OF THE PORTION OF THE SENATE REPORT JUST QUOTED IS SUFFICIENTLY BROAD TO PERMIT THE DEPOSITING OF SUCH RECOVERIES INTO POSTAL REVENUES. HENCE THERE IS NO LEGAL OBJECTION TO DEPOSITING SUCH RECOVERIES INTO POSTAL REVENUES SHOULD YOU SO DESIRE.

B-130212, FEBRUARY 13, 1957, 36 COMP. GEN. 591

JURY FEES - WITNESS FEES - POSTAL EMPLOYEES - DISPOSITION - POSTAL REVENUES AND MISCELLANEOUS RECEIPTS IN VIEW OF THE BROAD LANGUAGE OF SECTION 3 OF THE ACT OF JUNE 29, 1940, 5 U.S.C. 30P, STATE COURT JURY FEES RECOVERED FROM POSTAL EMPLOYEES MAY BE DEPOSITED INTO POSTAL REVENUES. WITNESS FEES RECOVERED FROM FEDERAL EMPLOYEES APPEARING IN STATE COURTS ON BEHALF OF THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT, UNLIKE JURY FEES, ARE NOT COVERED BY THE ACT OF JUNE 29, 1940, 5 U.S.C. 30P, AND, THEREFORE, SUCH FEES MUST BE DEPOSITED INTO MISCELLANEOUS RECEIPTS OF THE TREASURY.

TO THE POSTMASTER GENERAL, FEBRUARY 13, 1957:

IN A LETTER DATED DECEMBER 28, 1956, REFERENCE 800, THE ACTING POSTMASTER GENERAL REQUESTED OUR DECISION WHETHER THERE WOULD BE OBJECTION TO THE DEPARTMENT ISSUING INSTRUCTIONS THAT THE FEES RECOVERED FROM THE DEPARTMENTAL AND FIELD POSTAL EMPLOYEES BECAUSE OF STATE COURT JURY SERVICE OR AS WITNESSES ON BEHALF OF THE GOVERNMENT BE DEPOSITED AS POSTAL REVENUES.

REGARDING JURY FEES THE LETTER POINTS OUT THAT THE PROPOSED DISPOSITION OF THE SUMS SO RECOVERED WOULD SEEM TO BE IN ACCORD WITH THE PROVISIONS OF SECTION 3 OF THE ACT OF JUNE 29, 1940, 54 STAT. 689, 5 U.S.C. 30P, AND WITH CERTAIN OF OUR DECISIONS CITED IN THE LETTER WHICH, WHILE DEALING GENERALLY WITH THE QUESTION, HAVE NOT RULED ON THE SPECIFIC POINT.

SECTION 3 OF THE 1940 ACT READS AS FOLLOWS:

THERE SHALL BE CREDITED AGAINST THE AMOUNT OF COMPENSATION PAYABLE BY THE UNITED STATES TO ANY EMPLOYEE SPECIFIED IN SECTION 1 FOR SUCH PERIOD AS SUCH EMPLOYEE MAY BE ABSENT ON ACCOUNT OF JURY SERVICE IN THE COURT OF ANY STATE ANY AMOUNTS WHICH SUCH EMPLOYEE MAY RECEIVE FROM SUCH STATE ON ACCOUNT OF SUCH JURY SERVICE.

THE ONLY STATEMENT APPEARING IN THE LEGISLATIVE HISTORY CONCERNING SECTION 3 IS CONTAINED IN SENATE REPORT NO. 1866, 76TH CONGRESS, 3D SESSION AND READS AS FOLLOWS:

SECTION 3 PROVIDES THAT ANY PAY RECEIVED FOR JURY SERVICE IN STATE COURTS SHALL BE CHARGED OR DEDUCTED FROM THE REGULAR PAY OF SUCH EMPLOYEE FROM THE UNITED STATES.

OUR DECISION IN 20 COMP. GEN. 279, SUGGESTS THAT RECOVERIES OF JURY FEES SHOULD BE DEPOSITED INTO A RECEIPT ACCOUNT OF THE GENERAL FUND. WHILE THE DEPOSIT OF THE JURY FEES INTO A RECEIPT ACCOUNT OF THE GENERAL FUND CANNOT BE DEEMED TO BE ERRONEOUS WE FEEL THAT THE LANGUAGE OF SECTION 3 OF THE ACT READ IN THE LIGHT OF THE PORTION OF THE SENATE REPORT JUST QUOTED IS SUFFICIENTLY BROAD TO PERMIT THE DEPOSITING OF SUCH RECOVERIES INTO POSTAL REVENUES. HENCE THERE IS NO LEGAL OBJECTION TO DEPOSITING SUCH RECOVERIES INTO POSTAL REVENUES SHOULD YOU SO DESIRE.

THE 1940 STATUTE DOES NOT RELATE TO ABSENCES OF EMPLOYEES APPEARING AS WITNESSES AND THEREFORE WITNESS FEES RECOVERED IN PROPER CASES SHOULD BE DEPOSITED INTO MISCELLANEOUS RECEIPTS AS DIRECTED IN OUR DECISIONS, 23 COMP. GEN. 628 AND 15 ID. 196.