B-133549, OCT. 15, 1957

B-133549: Oct 15, 1957

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YOU EXPRESS THE OPINION THAT LEGAL AUTHORITY FOR PAYMENT OF THESE INSURANCE CHARGES IS CONTAINED IN SECTION 5 OF THE 1926 ACT. APPROPRIATED MONIES OF THE UNITED STATES ARE NOT GENERALLY REGARDED AS AVAILABLE FOR PAYMENT OF INSURANCE PREMIUMS IN THE ABSENCE OF SPECIFIC STATUTORY AUTHORITY. 66 STAT. 140 (22 U.S.C. 296) PROVIDES IN PERTINENT PART AS FOLLOWS: "FOR THE PURPOSES OF THIS ACT THE SECRETARY OF STATE IS AUTHORIZED * * * WHEN DEEMED NECESSARY. WHEN SUCH INSURANCE IS DEEMED NECESSARY. THE GRANT OF AUTHORITY TO INSURE IS APPLICABLE TO ALL FOREIGN SERVICE PROPERTIES WHETHER IN FOREIGN COUNTRIES OR ACQUIRED UNDER THE ACT AND NO LIMITATIONS AS TO THE TYPES OF INSURANCE WHICH CAN BE PROCURED MAY BE IMPLIED INASMUCH AS NO SPECIFIC CLASS OF INSURANCE IS MENTIONED IN THE LAW.

B-133549, OCT. 15, 1957

TO MISS D. HOYLMAN, AUTHORIZED CERTIFYING OFFICER, DEPARTMENT OF STATE:

YOUR LETTER OF AUGUST 21, 1957, FORWARDED FOR OUR CONSIDERATION A VOUCHER IN FAVOR OF C. A. SPORL AND COMPANY, INC., IN THE AMOUNT OF $62.64, FOR INSURANCE PREMIUMS ON VARIOUS SHIPMENTS OF GOVERNMENT PROPERTY BY AIR FROM NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA, TO TEGUCIGALPA, HONDURAS, AND PORT-OF-SPAIN, TRINIDAD. THE INSURANCE COVERS SHIPMENTS OF FURNITURE PURCHASED IN THE UNITED STATES FOR USE IN BUILDINGS IN THE FOREIGN POSTS MENTIONED FROM THE APPROPRIATION "19X0535 ACQUISITION OF BUILDINGS ABROAD, STATE," PURSUANT TO THE AUTHORITY IN THE FOREIGN SERVICE BUILDINGS ACT, 1926, AS AMENDED, 22 U.S.C. 291, AND FOLLOWING SECTIONS.

YOU EXPRESS THE OPINION THAT LEGAL AUTHORITY FOR PAYMENT OF THESE INSURANCE CHARGES IS CONTAINED IN SECTION 5 OF THE 1926 ACT, AS AMENDED BY SECTION 3 OF THE ACT OF JUNE 19, 1952, 66 STAT. 140, 22 U.S.C. 296, AND YOU ASK WHETHER OUR OFFICE AGREES THAT THE VOUCHER IN QUESTION MAY PROPERLY BE CERTIFIED FOR PAYMENT.

IT HAS LONG BEEN THE SETTLED POLICY OF THE UNITED STATES TO ASSUME ITS OWN RISKS. HENCE, APPROPRIATED MONIES OF THE UNITED STATES ARE NOT GENERALLY REGARDED AS AVAILABLE FOR PAYMENT OF INSURANCE PREMIUMS IN THE ABSENCE OF SPECIFIC STATUTORY AUTHORITY. SEE 13 COMP. DEC. 779; 4 COMP. GEN. 690; 19 ID. 211; 21 ID. 928; 35 ID. 391; ID. 393.

SECTION 5 OF THE FOREIGN SERVICE BUILDINGS ACT, 1926, AS AMENDED BY SECTION 3 OF THE ACT OF JUNE 19, 1952, 66 STAT. 140 (22 U.S.C. 296) PROVIDES IN PERTINENT PART AS FOLLOWS:

"FOR THE PURPOSES OF THIS ACT THE SECRETARY OF STATE IS AUTHORIZED * * * WHEN DEEMED NECESSARY, TO INSURE THE FOREIGN SERVICE PROPERTIES IN FOREIGN COUNTRIES, AND THE OTHER PROPERTIES ACQUIRED IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE PROVISIONS OF THIS ACT; * * *"

THE PROVISIONS OF THE LAW QUOTED ABOVE, AUTHORIZE THE SECRETARY OF STATE TO INSURE FOREIGN SERVICE PROPERTY IN FOREIGN COUNTRIES AND OTHER PROPERTIES ACQUIRED IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE 1926 ACT, AS AMENDED, WHEN SUCH INSURANCE IS DEEMED NECESSARY. THUS, THE GRANT OF AUTHORITY TO INSURE IS APPLICABLE TO ALL FOREIGN SERVICE PROPERTIES WHETHER IN FOREIGN COUNTRIES OR ACQUIRED UNDER THE ACT AND NO LIMITATIONS AS TO THE TYPES OF INSURANCE WHICH CAN BE PROCURED MAY BE IMPLIED INASMUCH AS NO SPECIFIC CLASS OF INSURANCE IS MENTIONED IN THE LAW, THE ONLY LIMITING FACTORS BEING THAT SUCH INSURANCE ATTACHES TO THE PROPERTY MENTIONED AND THAT THE INSURANCE BE DETERMINED NECESSARY BY THE SECRETARY OR OTHER OFFICIAL OF THE DEPARTMENT AUTHORIZED TO MAKE SUCH DETERMINATIONS.

AN EXAMINATION OF THE VOUCHER INDICATES THAT THE INSURANCE WAS PROCURED FOR THE PROTECTION OF THE PROPERTY AGAINST LOSS OR DAMAGE WHILE IN TRANSIT FROM THE UNITED STATES TO THE FOREIGN POSTS INDICATED. SINCE THE PROPOSED EXPENDITURE IS FOR INSURANCE OF PROPERTY ACQUIRED IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE 1926 ACT, OUR OFFICE WOULD HAVE NO OBJECTION TO THE PAYMENT THEREOF PROVIDED INSURANCE WAS DEEMED NECESSARY BY THE DEPARTMENT OF STATE OR BY THE PROPER OFFICER OF THE DEPARTMENT AUTHORIZED TO MAKE SUCH A DETERMINATION.

WE HAVE BEEN INFORMALLY ADVISED THAT THIS AUTHORITY HAS BEEN DELEGATED TO THE DIRECTOR, OFFICE OF FOREIGN BUILDINGS, DEPARTMENT OF STATE, AND THAT THE NECESSITY FOR THE INSURANCE IN QUESTION HAS BEEN RECOGNIZED AND APPROVED BY THAT OFFICIAL. UNDER THE CIRCUMSTANCES, THE VOUCHER, WHICH