B-131226, JUN. 3, 1957

B-131226: Jun 3, 1957

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USNR: FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER. YOU WERE PLACED ON TEMPORARY DUTY AND DIRECTED TO PROCEED FROM ATHENS. WAS PERFORMED BY COMMERCIAL AIR. APPARENTLY NO CHARGE FOR EXCESS BAGGAGE WAS INCURRED FROM ATHENS. AFTER THE TRAVEL AND TEMPORARY DUTY WERE COMPLETED. YOUR ORDERS WERE AMENDED BY ORDERS DATED OCTOBER 30. TO STATE THAT 22 POUNDS EXCESS BAGGAGE WAS AUTHORIZED. THAT EXCESS BAGGAGE WAS REQUIRED FOR THE SUCCESSFUL ACCOMPLISHMENT OF YOUR MISSION. WAS "OPERATIONAL DUTIES.'. THAT YOU WERE ORDERED TO FRANKFURT AND WIESBADEN FOR TWO REASONS. THE SECOND OF WHICH WAS TO HAVE YOUR ARTIFICIAL LEG REPAIRED. THE TRANSPORTATION OF BAGGAGE OF MEMBERS OF THE UNIFORMED SERVICES IS GOVERNED BY JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS PROMULGATED BY THE SECRETARIES CONCERNED PURSUANT TO SECTION 303 (C) OF THE CAREER COMPENSATION ACT OF 1949.

B-131226, JUN. 3, 1957

TO LIEUTENANT ARTHUR G. HARDEN, USNR:

FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER, POSTMARKED MARCH 12, 1957, IN EFFECT REQUESTING REVIEW OF THE SETTLEMENT OF FEBRUARY 14, 1957, WHICH DISALLOWED YOUR CLAIM FOR $11.87, REPRESENTING THE COST OF SHIPPING 22 POUNDS OF EXCESS BAGGAGE BY COMMERCIAL AIR.

BY ORDERS DATED OCTOBER 10, 1956, YOU WERE PLACED ON TEMPORARY DUTY AND DIRECTED TO PROCEED FROM ATHENS, GREECE, TO WIESBADEN AND FRANKFURT, GERMANY, FOR A PERIOD OF APPROXIMATELY SEVEN DAYS FOR THE PURPOSE OF PERFORMING OPERATIONAL DUTIES. YOU PERFORMED SUCH TRAVEL AND TEMPORARY DUTY DURING THE PERIOD OCTOBER 15 TO 22, 1956. ALL TRAVEL, EXCEPT FROM FRANKFURT TO WIESBADEN AND RETURN, WAS PERFORMED BY COMMERCIAL AIR. APPARENTLY NO CHARGE FOR EXCESS BAGGAGE WAS INCURRED FROM ATHENS, GREECE, TO GENEVA, SWITZERLAND. THE CHARGE INCURRED FROM THE LATTER POINT TO FRANKFURT, AND THENCE TO ATHENS. AFTER THE TRAVEL AND TEMPORARY DUTY WERE COMPLETED, YOUR ORDERS WERE AMENDED BY ORDERS DATED OCTOBER 30, 1956, TO STATE THAT 22 POUNDS EXCESS BAGGAGE WAS AUTHORIZED, AND THAT EXCESS BAGGAGE WAS REQUIRED FOR THE SUCCESSFUL ACCOMPLISHMENT OF YOUR MISSION. YOUR MISSION, ACCORDING TO THE FIRST ORDERS, WAS "OPERATIONAL DUTIES.' YOUR PRESENT LETTER YOU STATE THAT THE EXCESS BAGGAGE CONSISTED OF AN EXTRA ARTIFICIAL LEG, AND THAT YOU WERE ORDERED TO FRANKFURT AND WIESBADEN FOR TWO REASONS, THE SECOND OF WHICH WAS TO HAVE YOUR ARTIFICIAL LEG REPAIRED.

THE TRANSPORTATION OF BAGGAGE OF MEMBERS OF THE UNIFORMED SERVICES IS GOVERNED BY JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS PROMULGATED BY THE SECRETARIES CONCERNED PURSUANT TO SECTION 303 (C) OF THE CAREER COMPENSATION ACT OF 1949, 63 STAT. 814. SUCH REGULATIONS PROVIDE THAT EXPENSES INCIDENT TO SHIPMENT OF EXCESS BAGGAGE MAY BE REIMBURSED WHEN AUTHORIZED BY THE ORDER- ISSUING AUTHORITY. IT LONG HAS BEEN THE RULE OF THE ACCOUNTING OFFICERS OF THE GOVERNMENT THAT TRAVEL ORDERS MAY NOT BE MODIFIED OR REVOKED RETROACTIVELY TO INCREASE OR DECREASE THE RIGHTS WHICH HAVE ACCRUED AND BECOME FIXED UNDER APPLICABLE STATUTES FOR TRAVEL AND DUTY ALREADY PERFORMED. SINCE YOUR ORDERS OF OCTOBER 10, 1956, DID NOT AUTHORIZE EXCESS BAGGAGE AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE, AND SINCE YOUR ORDERS WERE NOT MODIFIED IN THIS RESPECT UNTIL AFTER THE TRAVEL WAS COMPLETED, THERE IS NO LEGAL BASIS FOR THE ALLOWANCE OF YOUR CLAIM. SUCH BEING THE CASE, THE SETTLEMENT OF FEBRUARY 14, 1957, WAS CORRECT AND IS SUSTAINED.