B-135506, MAR. 21, 1958

B-135506: Mar 21, 1958

Additional Materials:

Contact:

Edda Emmanuelli Perez
(202) 512-2853
EmmanuelliPerezE@gao.gov

 

Office of Public Affairs
(202) 512-4800
youngc1@gao.gov

PROVIDES THAT APPROPRIATIONS AVAILABLE FOR SALARIES AND EXPENSES "SHALL BE AVAILABLE FOR TRAVEL EXPENSES AND FOR ATTENDANCE AT MEETINGS CONCERNED WITH THE FUNCTIONS OR ACTIVITIES FOR WHICH SUCH APPROPRIATIONS ARE MADE.'. QUOTING FROM THE SYLLABUS: "MEETINGS OF A PRIVATE ORGANIZATION (BROOKINGS EXECUTIVE CONFERENCE PROGRAM) ATTENDED BY SELECT DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE PERSONNEL FOR PURPOSES OF EXECUTIVE DEVELOPMENT AND IMPROVEMENT ARE NOT SO PARTICULARLY ASSOCIATED WITH THE WORK OF THE DEPARTMENT IN THE PERFORMANCE OF ITS STATUTORY FUNCTIONS TO BE REGARDED AS MEETINGS "CONCERNED WITH THE ACTIVITIES FOR WHICH APPROPRIATIONS ARE MADE" WITHIN THE MEANING OF SECTION 103 OF THE DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE AND RELATED AGENCIES APPROPRIATION ACT.

B-135506, MAR. 21, 1958

TO MR. JAMES F. KELLY, AUTHORIZED CERTIFYING OFFICER, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH, EDUCATION, AND WELFARE:

YOUR LETTER OF MARCH 14, 1958, ASKS WHETHER THE TWO REGIONAL DIRECTORS INVITED TO ATTEND AND PARTICIPATE IN THE NATIONAL CONFERENCE OF THE AMERICAN SOCIETY FOR PUBLIC ADMINISTRATION FOR THE PERIOD MARCH 23 THROUGH 26, 1958, MAY BE ADVANCED FUNDS TO COVER TRAVEL AND OTHER EXPENSES IN CONNECTION WITH THE MEETING.

YOU SAY ONE OF THE REGIONAL DIRECTORS HAS BEEN ASKED TO PARTICIPATE AS:

"1. CHAIRMAN AND MODERATOR OF THE SESSION ON MARCH 24, 1958;

2. PARTICIPANT IN THE PANEL CHAIRED BY MR. BERNARD GLADIEUX ON THE SUBJECT OF "TACTICS AND STRATEGY IN PUBLIC ADMINISTRATION" ON MARCH 26;

3. MEMBER OF THE INTERNATIONAL COMMITTEE OF ASPA, MEETING ON MARCH 25 AND 26;

4. MEMBER OF THE NATIONAL ADVISORY COMMITTEE OF THE SOCIETY.'

THE OTHER REGIONAL DIRECTOR HAS GEEN ASKED TO PARTICIPATE AS:

"1. MEMBER OF THE COUNCIL OF THE ASPA;

2. PARTICIPANT IN THE FIRST MEETING OF THE ASPA COMMITTEE ON RESEARCH NEEDS AND RESOURCES;

3. PARTICIPANT ON PANEL DISCUSSION OF "CLINIC ON COMMUNICATION IN PUBLIC HEALTH INISTRATION," A JOINT SESSION OF THE ASPA AND PUBLIC HEALTH ASSOCIATION OF NEW YORK CITY.'

YOU POINT OUT THAT SECTION 204 OF THE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH, EDUCATION, AND WELFARE APPROPRIATION ACT OF 1958, 71 STAT. 223, PROVIDES THAT APPROPRIATIONS AVAILABLE FOR SALARIES AND EXPENSES "SHALL BE AVAILABLE FOR TRAVEL EXPENSES AND FOR ATTENDANCE AT MEETINGS CONCERNED WITH THE FUNCTIONS OR ACTIVITIES FOR WHICH SUCH APPROPRIATIONS ARE MADE.' YOU DIRECT ATTENTION TO OUR DECISION 37 COMP. GEN. 335 WHEREIN WE HELD AS FOLLOWS, QUOTING FROM THE SYLLABUS:

"MEETINGS OF A PRIVATE ORGANIZATION (BROOKINGS EXECUTIVE CONFERENCE PROGRAM) ATTENDED BY SELECT DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE PERSONNEL FOR PURPOSES OF EXECUTIVE DEVELOPMENT AND IMPROVEMENT ARE NOT SO PARTICULARLY ASSOCIATED WITH THE WORK OF THE DEPARTMENT IN THE PERFORMANCE OF ITS STATUTORY FUNCTIONS TO BE REGARDED AS MEETINGS "CONCERNED WITH THE ACTIVITIES FOR WHICH APPROPRIATIONS ARE MADE" WITHIN THE MEANING OF SECTION 103 OF THE DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE AND RELATED AGENCIES APPROPRIATION ACT, 1958, FOR PAYMENT BY THE GOVERNMENT OF THE TRAVEL AND PER DIEM OF THE PERSONNEL SELECTED TO ATTEND. THAT PART OF 36 COMP. GEN. 474, OR ANY OTHER DECISIONS INDICATING A CONTRARY CONCLUSION, OVERRULED.'

YOU POINT OUT THAT WHILE OUR DECISION 37 COMP. GEN. 335 STATES THAT IT OVERRULES THAT PART OF 36 COMP. GEN. 474, OR ANY OTHER DECISION INDICATING A CONTRARY CONCLUSION, YOU FEEL THAT THERE WAS NOT OVERRULED THAT PORTION OF 36 COMP. GEN. 474 WHICH STATES THAT A FIVE-DAY MANAGEMENT CONFERENCE FOR GOVERNMENT ADMINISTRATORS CONDUCTED UNDER THE SPONSORSHIP OF THE AMERICAN SOCIETY FOR PUBLIC ADMINISTRATION FOR THE PURPOSE OF EXCHANGING EXPERIENCES AND INFORMATION IN THE FIELD OF MANAGEMENT IS A "MEETING" RATHER THAN A "COURSE OF TRAINING OR INSTRUCTION.' OUR DECISION 37 COMP. GEN. 335 HELD TO THE EFFECT THAT THE MEETING OR CONFERENCE MUST DEAL WITH "ACTIVITIES PECULIARLY ASSOCIATED WITH THE WORK OF AN AGENCY IN THE PERFORMANCE OF ITS STATUTORY FUNCTIONS AND NOT TO GENERAL PROBLEMS, SUCH AS MANAGEMENT, WHICH ARE COMMON TO ALL ORGANIZATIONS.' BY THAT LANGUAGE THERE WAS OVERRULED THAT PART OF 36 COMP. GEN. 474 CONCERNING THE USE OF APPROPRIATED MONEYS FOR PAYMENT OF TRAVEL AND OTHER EXPENSES INCIDENT TO MEETINGS AND CONFERENCES DEALING WITH GENERAL MANAGEMENT PROBLEMS.

IN VIEW OF THE LANGUAGE IN OUR DECISION 37 COMP. GEN. 335, AND THE STATUTORY PROVISIONS INVOLVED, SINCE ONE OF THE REGIONAL DIRECTORS WILL BE DEALING WITH MATTERS OF A GENERAL NATURE PECULIAR TO THE SOCIETY AND PUBLIC ADMINISTRATION, NO BASIS EXISTS FOR AUTHORIZING AN ADVANCE OF FUNDS TO HIM TO COVER TRAVEL AND OTHER EXPENSES IN CONNECTION WITH ATTENDANCE AT THE MEETING AS SUCH PARTICIPATION CONCERNS NEITHER THE FUNCTIONS OR ACTIVITIES OF THE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH, EDUCATION, AND WELFARE BUT SEEMINGLY DEALS ONLY WITH GENERAL MANAGEMENT MATTERS.

AS TO THE OTHER REGIONAL DIRECTOR, SINCE HIS PARTICIPATION, IN PART AT LEAST, WILL CONCERN PUBLIC HEALTH MATTERS, A FUNCTION OR ACTIVITY OF THE DEPARTMENT, THE ADVANCE OF FUNDS TO HIM TO COVER TRAVEL AND OTHER EXPENSES IN CONNECTION WITH ATTENDANCE AT THE MEETING WOULD BE IN ACCORD WITH THE STATUTORY LANGUAGE ABOVE AND OUR DECISION 37 COMP. GEN. 335.