B-130605, JUL. 9, 1957

B-130605: Jul 9, 1957

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TO THE SECRETARY OF THE STATE: REFERENCE IS MADE TO A LETTER OF MARCH 23. BEFORE SUCH DOCUMENT IS VALID FOR SERVICE. IT IS STATED THAT MANY SITUATIONS ARE ENCOUNTERED WHERE SUCH TRAVELERS WOULD BE UNDULY DELAYED. SOMETIMES DEFEATING THE PURPOSE OF AUTHORIZED TRAVEL IF TRAVELERS ARE REQUIRED TO TAKE THE TIME TO OBTAIN THEIR OWN TICKETS FOR TRANSPORTATION SERVICES. AN EXCEPTION TO THE REQUIREMENTS OF OUR GENERAL REGULATIONS NO. 123 IS REQUESTED. THE SITUATIONS IN WHICH YOUR DEPARTMENT BELIEVES THERE IS A NEED FOR SUCH A DESIGNATED AGENT PROCEDURE REPORTEDLY GENERALLY INVOLVE THE PROCUREMENT OF TICKETS FOR TRANSPORTATION AND ACCOMMODATIONS FOR (1) EMPLOYEES AND THEIR DEPENDENTS LOCATED IN OR NEAR WASHINGTON.

B-130605, JUL. 9, 1957

TO THE SECRETARY OF THE STATE:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO A LETTER OF MARCH 23, 1956, FILE FD/T, FROM MR. H. A. BLUNDIN, CHIEF, TRAVEL AND TRANSPORTATION BRANCH, FACILITIES DIVISION, DEPARTMENT OF STATE, CONCERNING THE REQUIREMENT OF PARAGRAPH (24) OF APPENDIX A, TO OUR GENERAL REGULATIONS NO. 123, THAT THE HANDWRITTEN SIGNATURE OF THE TRAVELER BE PLACED IN THE SPACE PROVIDED THEREFOR ON STANDARD FORM NO. 1169, THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA TRANSPORTATION REQUEST, BEFORE SUCH DOCUMENT IS VALID FOR SERVICE.

IT IS STATED THAT MANY SITUATIONS ARE ENCOUNTERED WHERE SUCH TRAVELERS WOULD BE UNDULY DELAYED, SOMETIMES DEFEATING THE PURPOSE OF AUTHORIZED TRAVEL IF TRAVELERS ARE REQUIRED TO TAKE THE TIME TO OBTAIN THEIR OWN TICKETS FOR TRANSPORTATION SERVICES. THEREFORE, AN EXCEPTION TO THE REQUIREMENTS OF OUR GENERAL REGULATIONS NO. 123 IS REQUESTED, SO THAT IN THE DESCRIBED SITUATIONS THE TRANSPORTATION MAY BE PROCURED FOR THE TRAVELER ON A TRANSPORTATION REQUEST SIGNED BY A PERSON DESIGNATED AS AN AUTHORIZED AGENT FOR THE TRAVELER, WITHOUT REQUIRING THE SIGNATURE OF THE TRAVELER ON THE TRANSPORTATION REQUEST. THE SITUATIONS IN WHICH YOUR DEPARTMENT BELIEVES THERE IS A NEED FOR SUCH A DESIGNATED AGENT PROCEDURE REPORTEDLY GENERALLY INVOLVE THE PROCUREMENT OF TICKETS FOR TRANSPORTATION AND ACCOMMODATIONS FOR (1) EMPLOYEES AND THEIR DEPENDENTS LOCATED IN OR NEAR WASHINGTON, D.C.; (2) OVERSEAS AND FOREIGN TRAVEL OF NEW APPOINTEES AND THE RETURN TRAVEL OF EMPLOYEES ON LEAVE AND THEIR DEPENDENTS, NONE OF WHOM RESIDE IN WASHINGTON; AND (3) DELEGATES TO CONFERENCES ABROAD.

OUR GENERAL REGULATIONS NO. 123 WERE FORMULATED AFTER CONSIDERABLE DISCUSSION WITH THE GOVERNMENT AGENCIES AND REPRESENTATIVES OF THE TRANSPORTATION INDUSTRY, AS BEING BEST DESIGNED TO PROTECT THE INTERESTS OF THE GOVERNMENT, THE TRAVELERS, AND THE CARRIERS. UNLESS UNUSUAL OR EMERGENT SITUATIONS ARISE WHICH ARE PRODUCTIVE OF DISADVANTAGEOUS AND UNECONOMICAL OPERATIONS BECAUSE OF ADHERENCE TO THE SPECIFIED REQUIREMENTS OF THE REGULATIONS, WE ARE RELUCTANT TO APPROVE REQUESTS FOR EXCEPTIONS TO SUCH REGULATIONS. WHILE WE RECOGNIZE, IN APPROPRIATE SITUATIONS, THE DESIRABILITY OF CONCURRING IN THE ESTABLISHMENT OF ANY EFFECTIVE MEASURES WHICH CONTRIBUTE TO MORE EFFICIENT AND ECONOMICAL ADMINISTRATIVE OPERATIONS WITHOUT DETRIMENT TO THE GOVERNMENT'S OVERALL INTEREST, A BLANKET EXCEPTION TO THE REQUIREMENT OF THE MENTIONED PARAGRAPH (24) DOES NOT APPEAR TO BE WARRANTED IN THE CATEGORIES OF TRAVEL THAT ARE DESCRIBED BY YOUR DEPARTMENT AS BEING INVOLVED IN THIS INSTANCE.

ACCORDINGLY, WE APPROVE, AS A GENERAL RULE, FOR THE TIME BEING, RECOURSE BY YOUR DEPARTMENT TO THE DESIGNATED AGENT PROCEDURE IN THE CIRCUMSTANCES DESCRIBED IN YOUR DEPARTMENT'S LETTER WHEN THE OFFICIALS OR EMPLOYEES INVOLVED ARE NOT READILY AVAILABLE OR WHEN THE TRANSPORTATION REQUESTS ARE DRAWN UNDER CONDITIONS WHICH, BECAUSE OF THE NECESSITY FOR PROMPT ACTION AND THE LOCATION OF THE TRAVELERS IN PLACES OUTSIDE OF THE WASHINGTON AREA, MAKE IT IMPRACTICABLE TO OBTAIN TRAVELERS' SIGNATURES ON THE REQUESTS. IT IS NOT TO BE UNDERSTOOD THAT THE USE OF THE DESIGNATED AGENT PROCEDURE ORDINARILY WOULD BE JUSTIFIED AS TO TRAVELERS LOCATED AT PLACES IN OR NEAR WASHINGTON, AND WE DO NOT APPROVE THE GENERAL USE OF SUCH PROCEDURE AS TO SUCH TRAVELERS. IT IS ASSUMED, FOR EXAMPLE, THAT YOUR DEPARTMENT IS PRIMARILY CONCERNED WITH SUCH CASES AS ARE DESCRIBED IN THE FIRST FULL PARAGRAPH ON PAGE 2 OF THE LETTER OF MARCH 23, 1956, AS TO EMPLOYEES ON OFFICIAL LEAVE AT SOME POINT OUTSIDE OF WASHINGTON WHERE,"PREPAYMENT" OF TICKETS IS REQUIRED AND TRAVELERS ARE SCHEDULED TO DEPART WITHIN A PERIOD OF TIME WHICH PRECLUDES THE OBTAINING OF TICKETS IN WASHINGTON AND MAILING TO TRAVELERS. SIMILAR DIFFICULTIES AS TO OTHER CATEGORIES OF TRAVELERS LOCATED OUTSIDE OF WASHINGTON ARE SOUGHT TO BE REMEDIED.

IN SITUATIONS IN WHICH THE USE OF THE DESIGNATED AGENT PROCEDURE IS AUTHORIZED IT WILL BE NECESSARY THAT THE NAME OF THE ACTUAL TRAVELER BE PLACED IN THE SPACE FOLLOWING THE WORDS "FOR USE OF" ON STANDARD FORM NO. 1169, RATHER THAN THAT OF THE DESIGNATED AGENT WHOSE NAME WILL APPEAR IN THE SPACE DESIGNED FOR THE TRAVELER'S SIGNATURE. THE WORDS "DESIGNATED AGENT" SHOULD BE PLACED ON OR BELOW THE LINE ON WHICH THE TRAVELER'S SIGNATURE ORDINARILY APPEARS. ALSO A TYPED OR RUBBER STAMP NOTATION SHOULD BE PLACED ON THE REVERSE SIDE OF THE TRANSPORTATION REQUEST IN SUBSTANTIALLY THE FOLLOWING FORM:

"JOHN DOE, THE DESIGNATED AGENT, WAS DIRECTED THROUGH DEPARTMENT OF STATE CHANNELS TO SIGN THIS T/R AS AGENT FOR THE TRAVELER WHO WAS NOT AVAILABLE FOR PERSONAL SIGNATURE AT THE TIME THE TRANSPORTATION RESERVATIONS WERE MADE. THIS PROCEDURE APPROVED BY THE COMPTROLLER GENERAL OF THE UNITED STATES, B-130605, ON --------------------- (SHOW DATE OF THIS LETTER).'

THIS APPROVAL IS GRANTED UPON THE ASSURANCE THAT NECESSARY AND ADEQUATE CONTROLS OVER THE PROPER PROCUREMENT OF THE SERVICES INVOLVED WILL BE MAINTAINED BY YOUR DEPARTMENT.

OUR TRANSPORTATION DIVISION IS BEING INSTRUCTED TO SURVEY THE RESULTS OF THE USE OF THE PROCEDURE APPROVED HEREIN AFTER A REASONABLE PERIOD OF TIME SUFFICIENT TO PERMIT A PROPER EVALUATION OF THE RESULTS OF THE PROCEDURE AND TO ENABLE A DETERMINATION AS TO WHETHER THE CONTINUED USE OF SUCH PROCEDURE IS JUSTIFIED.