B-135959, JUL. 10, 1958

B-135959: Jul 10, 1958

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IN APRIL 1955 MAJOR MCGUIRE WAS DETACHED FROM HEADQUARTERS. HE WAS RETURNED FROM OVERSEAS IN 1956 AND ASSIGNED TO A PERMANENT STATION AT THE MARINE CORPS AIR STATION. IT APPEARS THAT GOVERNMENT QUARTERS AT QUANTICO ADEQUATE FOR HIM AND HIS DEPENDENTS WERE NOT THEN AVAILABLE FOR ASSIGNMENT TO HIM. WHEN HE WAS ASSIGNED AND MOVED INTO GOVERNMENT QUARTERS ON HIS STATION. WHICH PROVIDES THAT PAYMENT OF A DISLOCATION ALLOWANCE IS NOT AUTHORIZED FOR MOVING DEPENDENTS INCIDENT TO A PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION FROM ONE STATION TO ANOTHER LOCATED IN CLOSE PROXIMITY THERETO UNLESS SUPPORTED BY A CERTIFICATE OF THE COMMANDING OFFICER OF THE NEW STATION THAT THE RELOCATION WAS NECESSARY AS A DIRECT RESULT OF THE PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION.

B-135959, JUL. 10, 1958

TO MAJOR J. LADUTKO, DISBURSING OFFICER:

BY FIRST INDORSEMENT OF APRIL 22, 1958, THE COMMANDANT OF THE MARINE CORPS FORWARDED YOUR LETTER OF APRIL 7, 1958, WITH THE DISLOCATION ALLOWANCE CLAIM OF MAJOR JAMES L. MCGUIRE, USMC, REQUESTING AN ADVANCE DECISION AS TO HIS RIGHT TO SUCH ALLOWANCE IN THE CIRCUMSTANCES SET FORTH BELOW.

IN APRIL 1955 MAJOR MCGUIRE WAS DETACHED FROM HEADQUARTERS, UNITED STATES MARINE CORPS, WASHINGTON, D.C., AND SENT OVERSEAS ON PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION ORDERS. HE ELECTED TO PERMIT HIS FAMILY, WHICH INCLUDES A WIFE AND SEVEN CHILDREN, TO REMAIN AT WOODBRIDGE, VIRGINIA. HE WAS RETURNED FROM OVERSEAS IN 1956 AND ASSIGNED TO A PERMANENT STATION AT THE MARINE CORPS AIR STATION, QUANTICO, VIRGINIA, WHERE HE REPORTED FOR DUTY ON JULY 17, 1956. IT APPEARS THAT GOVERNMENT QUARTERS AT QUANTICO ADEQUATE FOR HIM AND HIS DEPENDENTS WERE NOT THEN AVAILABLE FOR ASSIGNMENT TO HIM. MAJOR MCGUIRE, THEREFORE, COMMUTED BETWEEN WOODBRIDGE AND QUANTICO, A DISTANCE OF 8 MILES, UNTIL OCTOBER 16, 1957, WHEN HE WAS ASSIGNED AND MOVED INTO GOVERNMENT QUARTERS ON HIS STATION. HIS COMMANDING OFFICER HAS FORWARDED A STATEMENT EXPRESSING THE VIEW THAT MAJOR MCGUIRE'S RELOCATION AT QUANTICO RESULTED DIRECTLY FROM THE ORDERS IN 1956 WHICH DIRECTED HIS ASSIGNMENT TO THE MARINE CORPS AIR STATION.

YOU QUOTE FROM PARAGRAPH 9003-8, JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS, WHICH PROVIDES THAT PAYMENT OF A DISLOCATION ALLOWANCE IS NOT AUTHORIZED FOR MOVING DEPENDENTS INCIDENT TO A PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION FROM ONE STATION TO ANOTHER LOCATED IN CLOSE PROXIMITY THERETO UNLESS SUPPORTED BY A CERTIFICATE OF THE COMMANDING OFFICER OF THE NEW STATION THAT THE RELOCATION WAS NECESSARY AS A DIRECT RESULT OF THE PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION, AND YOUR DOUBT IN THIS MATTER APPEARS TO ARISE FROM THE FACT THAT YOU REGARD THE ORDERS IN THIS CASE AS FALLING WITHIN THE QUOTED PARAGRAPH OF THE REGULATIONS. FOR THE REASON THAT SIMILAR SITUATIONS FREQUENTLY ARISE IN CONNECTION WITH CHANGES OF STATION BETWEEN WASHINGTON AND QUANTICO YOU ALSO REQUEST ANSWERS TO TWO QUESTIONS:

"1. DOES THE PHRASE "IN CONNECTION WITH A PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION" CONNOTE A TIME ELEMENT AS IT APPLIES TO DISLOCATION ALLOWANCE?

"2. MAY A COMMANDING OFFICER'S CERTIFICATE, THAT A MOVE WAS NECESSARY, OVERCOME EVIDENCE THAT IT WAS NOT THE DIRECT RESULT OF AN ORDERED CHANGE OF STATION SO AS TO COMPLY WITH THE PROVISIONS OF JTR, PARAGRAPH 9003-8?

THESE QUESTIONS APPEAR TO BE OF A HYPOTHETICAL NATURE AS TO WHICH AN AUTHORITATIVE DECISION MAY NOT BE RENDERED SINCE THE SUBMITTED VOUCHER DOES NOT INVOLVE AN ORDERED CHANGE OF STATION FROM WASHINGTON TO QUANTICO,NOR DOES IT DIRECTLY INVOLVE THE REQUIREMENT FOR A CERTIFICATE OF NECESSITY FROM THE COMMANDING OFFICER.

MAJOR MCGUIRE WAS ORDERED FROM AN OVERSEAS STATION TO A STATION IN THE UNITED STATES IN THE GENERAL AREA OF AN EARLIER PERMANENT STATION. IT WAS HELD IN A DECISION TO THE SECRETARY OF THE NAVY, DATED MARCH 1, 1957, B- 130422, THAT IN A CASE WHERE A MEMBER IS ASSIGNED ON PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION TO A FORMER STATION FROM WHICH HIS DEPENDENTS HAD NOT MOVED INCIDENT TO THE INTERVENING PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION, DISLOCATION ALLOWANCE WOULD BE PAYABLE INCIDENT TO THE CURRENT PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION ORDERS PROVIDED AN APPROPRIATE CERTIFICATE UNDER PARAGRAPH 9003-8, JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS, OR OTHER SATISFACTORY EVIDENCE IS FURNISHED WHICH ESTABLISHES THAT THE CHANGE OF RESIDENCE IS NECESSARY AS A DIRECT RESULT OF THE PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION. THIS RULE APPEARS EQUALLY APPLICABLE IN THE CASE HERE IN QUESTION AND ON THIS BASIS, NOTWITHSTANDING ANY CONTRARY INFERENCES WHICH MIGHT BE DRAWN FROM THE DELAY IN RELOCATING HIS DEPENDENTS, WE CONCLUDE THAT THE FACTS AS SET FORTH BY MAJOR MCGUIRE AND HIS COMMANDING OFFICER SUFFICIENTLY ESTABLISH HIS RIGHT TO A DISLOCATION ALLOWANCE.

ACCORDINGLY, PAYMENT OF THE CLAIM, RETURNED HEREWITH, IS AUTHORIZED, IF OTHERWISE CORRECT.