B-135632, APR. 24, 1958

B-135632: Apr 24, 1958

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USMC: FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF FEBRUARY 14. YOU WERE DIRECTED TO PROCEED FROM THE U.S. BY GOVERNMENT AIRCRAFT TO THE PLACE VERBALLY DESIGNATED BY YOUR COMMANDING OFFICER WHERE YOU WERE TO REPORT TO THE OFFICER-IN-CHARGE. YOU WERE TO REPORT TO THE COMMANDING OFFICER. YOUR CLAIM IS FOR PER DIEM FOR THE PERIOD FROM APRIL 12 TO OCTOBER 15. IS ADVANCED ON THE BASIS THAT YOU WERE TRAVELING AWAY FROM YOUR STATION AT NORFOLK DURING THAT PERIOD AS A PART OF A DEPLOYMENT OPERATION OF YOUR ORGANIZATION. PARAGRAPH 3002 OF THE REGULATIONS PROVIDES THAT WRITTEN ORDERS ISSUED BY COMPETENT AUTHORITY ARE REQUIRED FOR REIMBURSEMENT OF EXPENSES INCIDENT TO THE PERFORMANCE OF OFFICIAL TRAVEL.

B-135632, APR. 24, 1958

TO MAJOR JAMES V. HOLCOMBE, USMC:

FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF FEBRUARY 14, 1958, WITH ENCLOSURES, FORWARDED HERE BY HEADQUARTERS UNITED STATES MARINE CORPS, IN EFFECT REQUESTING REVIEW OF OUR SETTLEMENT OF MAY 23, 1957, WHICH DISALLOWED YOUR CLAIM FOR PER DIEM INCIDENT TO DUTY PERFORMED AS A MEMBER OF COMPOSITE SQUADRON SEVEN, UNITED STATES ATLANTIC FLEET AIR FORCE, DURING OPERATIONAL DEPLOYMENT ACTIVITIES OF THAT SQUADRON.

UNDER ORDERS DATED APRIL 3, 1952, YOU WERE DIRECTED TO PROCEED FROM THE U.S. NAVAL AIR STATION, NORFOLK, VIRGINIA, BY GOVERNMENT AIRCRAFT TO THE PLACE VERBALLY DESIGNATED BY YOUR COMMANDING OFFICER WHERE YOU WERE TO REPORT TO THE OFFICER-IN-CHARGE, COMPOSITE SQUADRON SEVEN, FOR DUTY. THE ORDERS CONTAINED NO INDICATION OF THE NATURE OR CIRCUMSTANCES OF THE DUTY ASSIGNMENT CONTEMPLATED OR OF YOUR DISPOSITION AFTER ITS COMPLETION. PRESUMABLY IN COMPLIANCE WITH THE VERBAL ORDERS OF YOUR COMMANDING OFFICER YOU LEFT NORFOLK ON APRIL 12, 1952, AND ARRIVED AT PORT LYAUTEY, FRENCH MOROCCO, ON APRIL 14, 1952. ORDERS OF OCTOBER 13, 1952, DIRECTED YOU TO PROCEED VIA GOVERNMENT AIRCRAFT TO THE PLACE VERBALLY DESIGNATED BY YOUR COMMANDING OFFICER WHERE, UPON ARRIVAL, YOU WERE TO REPORT TO THE COMMANDING OFFICER, COMPOSITE SQUADRON SEVEN, FOR DUTY. YOU LEFT PORT LYAUTEY ON OCTOBER 13 AND REPORTED AT NORFOLK ON OCTOBER 15, 1952. YOUR CLAIM IS FOR PER DIEM FOR THE PERIOD FROM APRIL 12 TO OCTOBER 15, 1952, LESS SPECIFIED PERIODS WHILE ON LEAVE OR ABOARD A GOVERNMENT VESSEL, OR WHILE ENTITLED TO PER DIEM UNDER SEPARATE ORDERS, AND IS ADVANCED ON THE BASIS THAT YOU WERE TRAVELING AWAY FROM YOUR STATION AT NORFOLK DURING THAT PERIOD AS A PART OF A DEPLOYMENT OPERATION OF YOUR ORGANIZATION.

SECTION 303/A) OF THE CAREER COMPENSATION ACT OF 1949, 63 STAT. 813, AUTHORIZES THE PAYMENT OF TRAVEL ALLOWANCES ONLY FOR TRAVEL PERFORMED IN COMPLIANCE WITH COMPETENT ORDERS. PARAGRAPH 3001 OF THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS REQUIRES THAT COMPETENT ORDERS BE WRITTEN INSTRUMENTS ISSUED BY APPROPRIATE AUTHORITY DIRECTING THE PERFORMANCE OF TRAVEL BETWEEN DESIGNATED POINTS. PARAGRAPH 3002 OF THE REGULATIONS PROVIDES THAT WRITTEN ORDERS ISSUED BY COMPETENT AUTHORITY ARE REQUIRED FOR REIMBURSEMENT OF EXPENSES INCIDENT TO THE PERFORMANCE OF OFFICIAL TRAVEL, BUT THAT A VERBAL ORDER GIVEN IN ADVANCE OF TRAVEL AND SUBSEQUENTLY CONFIRMED IN WRITING GIVING DATE OF THE VERBAL ORDER AND APPROVED BY COMPETENT AUTHORITY WILL MEET THE REQUIREMENT FOR WRITTEN ORDERS. THE ORDERS OF APRIL 3, 1952, DIRECTED NO TRAVEL OTHER THAN TO A POINT TO BE DESIGNATED VERBALLY BY YOUR COMMANDING OFFICER AND SO IN AND OF THEMSELVES WERE NOT COMPETENT TRAVEL ORDERS. ALTHOUGH YOUR COMMANDING OFFICER APPARENTLY DIRECTED YOU ORALLY TO PROCEED TO PORT LYAUTEY, SUCH ORAL ORDERS WERE NOT CONFIRMED IN WRITING AS CONTEMPLATED BY THE CITED REGULATIONS AND SO PROVIDE NO WRITTEN INSTRUMENT TO FURNISH THE EVIDENCE OF TRAVEL REQUIRED BY THE REGULATIONS TO SUPPORT A CLAIM FOR TRAVEL ALLOWANCES. IN ITS ABSENCE THERE IS NO AUTHORITY FOR THE PAYMENT OF YOUR CLAIM IRRESPECTIVE OF WHETHER IT MIGHT OTHERWISE BE SHOWN THAT YOUR ORGANIZATION WAS IN A TEMPORARY DUTY STATUS. ACCORDINGLY, THE SETTLEMENT OF MAY 23, 1957, IS SUSTAINED.