B-131414, JUN. 3, 1957

B-131414: Jun 3, 1957

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FC: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF MARCH 19. YOUR LETTER WAS FORWARDED TO US BY SECOND INDORSEMENT DATED APRIL 5. THE OFFICER WAS DIRECTED TO PROCEED FROM FORT MEADE TO MIDDLE RIVER ON TEMPORARY DUTY FOR APPROXIMATELY 60 DAYS AND THE ORDERS STATE "OFF WILL COMMUTE DAILY BETWEEN" THOSE POINTS. THE AMOUNT CLAIMED IS COMPUTED ON THE BASIS OF 15 ROUND TRIPS OF 62 MILES EACH. IT IS INDICATED THAT YOUR DOUBT AS TO WHETHER PAYMENT IS AUTHORIZED ARISES BECAUSE OF OUR DECISION OF NOVEMBER 19. THE TRIPS TO MIDDLE RIVER DID NOT INVOLVE AN ABSENCE IN EXCESS OF 10 HOURS AND PER DIEM IS NOT INVOLVED. EXPRESSED THE VIEW THAT A NEGATIVE ANSWER WOULD BE APPROPRIATE TO BOTH QUESTIONS INASMUCH AS THE ORDER- ISSUING HEADQUARTERS WAS WITHOUT AUTHORITY TO ORDER DAILY REPEATED TRAVEL AND THAT THE OFFICER WOULD BE ENTITLED ONLY TO MILEAGE FOR ONE ROUND TRIP.

B-131414, JUN. 3, 1957

TO LIEUTENANT COLONEL J. L. RYAN, FC:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF MARCH 19, 1957, REQUESTING DECISION AS TO WHETHER MILEAGE IN THE AMOUNT OF $46.50 MAY BE PAID TO FIRST LIEUTENANT JAMES L. ROOF, 0 4 018316, FOR FIFTEEN TRIPS FROM FORT GEORGE G. MEADE, MARYLAND, TO MIDDLE RIVER, MARYLAND, AND RETURN, DURING THE PERIOD JANUARY 7 TO MARCH 5, 1957. YOUR LETTER WAS FORWARDED TO US BY SECOND INDORSEMENT DATED APRIL 5, 1957.

BY PARAGRAPH 7, SPECIAL ORDERS NO. 3, DATED JANUARY 7, 1957, FORT GEORGE G. MEADE, MARYLAND, THE OFFICER WAS DIRECTED TO PROCEED FROM FORT MEADE TO MIDDLE RIVER ON TEMPORARY DUTY FOR APPROXIMATELY 60 DAYS AND THE ORDERS STATE "OFF WILL COMMUTE DAILY BETWEEN" THOSE POINTS. THE AMOUNT CLAIMED IS COMPUTED ON THE BASIS OF 15 ROUND TRIPS OF 62 MILES EACH, 930 MILES AT FIVE CENTS PER MILE. IT IS INDICATED THAT YOUR DOUBT AS TO WHETHER PAYMENT IS AUTHORIZED ARISES BECAUSE OF OUR DECISION OF NOVEMBER 19, 1956, B-129436, RELATING TO PAYMENT OF MILEAGE FOR TRAVEL TO A TEMPORARY DUTY STATION AND RETURN, AND PER DIEM FOR TEMPORARY DUTY INVOLVING AN ABSENCE OF MORE THAN 10 HOURS FROM THE PERMANENT STATION. IN THE PRESENT CASE, THE TRIPS TO MIDDLE RIVER DID NOT INVOLVE AN ABSENCE IN EXCESS OF 10 HOURS AND PER DIEM IS NOT INVOLVED. HOWEVER, YOU ASK (1) WHETHER MILEAGE MAY BE PAID UNDER THE ORDERS HERE INVOLVED SINCE TRAVEL AND TEMPORARY DUTY DID NOT EXCEED 10 HOURS PER DAY, AND (2) WHETHER THE ORDERS CONSTITUTE REPEATED TRAVEL ORDERS WITHIN THE PURVIEW OF PARAGRAPHS 3B AND 3D, ARMY REGULATIONS 310-25. BY FIRST INDORSEMENT DATED MARCH 27, 1957, HEADQUARTERS SECOND UNITED STATES ARMY, EXPRESSED THE VIEW THAT A NEGATIVE ANSWER WOULD BE APPROPRIATE TO BOTH QUESTIONS INASMUCH AS THE ORDER- ISSUING HEADQUARTERS WAS WITHOUT AUTHORITY TO ORDER DAILY REPEATED TRAVEL AND THAT THE OFFICER WOULD BE ENTITLED ONLY TO MILEAGE FOR ONE ROUND TRIP. THE CHIEF OF FINANCE, IN FORWARDING YOUR REQUEST HERE INVITED ATTENTION TO THE FACT THAT NO REFERENCE IS MADE IN PARAGRAPH 3, ARMY REGULATIONS 310-25, TO "REPEATED TRAVEL ORDERS" WHICH, IT IS STATED, ARE DEFINED IN PARAGRAPH 3003-4A, JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS, AS ORDERS WHICH ALLOW ANY NECESSARY NUMBER OF SEPARATE ROUND-TRIP JOURNEYS FROM THE PERMANENT DUTY STATION TO AND FROM OR BETWEEN SPECIFIED LOCATIONS. THEREFORE, IT IS SUGGESTED THAT IN THIS CASE DIFFERS FROM THOSE CONSIDERED IN THE DECISION OF NOVEMBER 19, 1956, MENTIONED ABOVE, AND 34 COMP. GEN. 549, CITED THEREIN, IN THAT THE ORDERS HERE INVOLVED "REQUIRE THE OFFICER TO COMMUTE DAILY BETWEEN HIS PERMANENT AND TEMPORARY DUTY STATION.'

THE ORDERS OF JANUARY 7, 1957, ARE SO VAGUE AND UNCERTAIN THAT THE TRAVEL AND TEMPORARY DUTY DIRECTED MAY NOT BE DETERMINED. ALTHOUGH THE ORDERS DIRECTED THE OFFICER TO PROCEED FROM FORT MEADE TO MIDDLE RIVER ON TEMPORARY DUTY FOR APPROXIMATELY 60 DAYS AND DID NOT DIRECT ANY DUTY TO BE PERFORMED ELSEWHERE, HIS ITINERARY SHOWS THAT HE WENT TO MIDDLE RIVER ON ONLY 15 DAYS DURING THE ENTIRE PERIOD, USUALLY A BREAK OF SEVERAL DAYS OCCURRING BETWEEN EACH TRIP. PERHAPS THE OFFICER WAS AT FORT MEADE, HIS PERMANENT STATION, DURING THE DAYS BETWEEN HIS TRIPS TO MIDDLE RIVER, ALTHOUGH THE ORDERS DO NOT SO PROVIDE. THEY DO NOT EVEN INCLUDE THE USUAL PROVISION, THAT UPON COMPLETION OF THE TEMPORARY DUTY DIRECTED, THE OFFICER SHOULD RETURN TO HIS PERMANENT STATION. THE ORDERS DO INCLUDE THE STATEMENT THAT THE OFFICER WILL "COMMUTE DAILY" BETWEEN FORT MEADE AND MIDDLE RIVER. IT IS NOT CLEAR, HOWEVER, WHETHER THAT PROVISION IS MERELY A STATEMENT OF FACT THAT THE OFFICER HAD AGREED TO COMMUTE DAILY IN ORDER TO RETURN TO HIS QUARTERS, OR WHETHER IT IS A PROVISION WHICH WAS INTENDED TO REQUIRE HIM TO RETURN TO HIS STATION EACH DAY. A PROVISION REQUIRING THE OFFICER TO COMMUTE DAILY BETWEEN HIS PERMANENT STATION AND HIS TEMPORARY STATION, UNLESS HE WAS REQUIRED TO PERFORM SOME DUTY AT HIS PERMANENT STATION, WOULD BE OF QUESTIONABLE VALIDITY. SEE PARAGRAPH 3003- 4A, JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS.

ACCORDINGLY, THE PRESENT RECORD DOES NOT PERMIT PAYMENT OF ANY TRAVEL ALLOWANCES TO THE OFFICER, AND IN THE ABSENCE OF FURTHER INFORMATION CLARIFYING THE ORDERS AND THE OFFICER'S SITUATION UNDER THEM, NO DECISION MAY BE RENDERED AS TO HIS ENTITLEMENT TO SUCH ALLOWANCE FOR THE TRAVEL PERFORMED.