B-137467, OCT 15, 1958

B-137467: Oct 15, 1958

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THERE WAS ENCLOSED WITH THE LETTER OF JULY 15. FROM THE OFFICER IN WHICH HE SAYS THAT PERMANENT FAMILY QUARTERS WERE NOT AVAILABLE FOR OCCUPANCY BY HIM AND HIS DEPENDENTS WHEN HIS DEPENDENTS ARRIVED IN SAUDI ARABIA ON JUNE 26. THAT HE WAS FURNISHED TWO ROOMS AND BATH IN THE SAUDI ARAB GOVERNMENT HOTEL. WERE AND ARE BEING PAID OUT OF THE PERSONAL FUNDS OF PRINCE FAHD. THAT SINCE HIS FAMILY IS LIVING IN HOTEL ROOMS. HE AND HIS FAMILY ARE FORCED TO DINE AT AN OFFICERS OPEN MESS AT A COST OF $250 TO $300 PER MONTH. IS A COMMUTATION OF EXPENSES PAID BY A MEMBER OF THE UNIFORMED SERVICES FOR PRIVATE QUARTERS WHEN HE IS NOT FURNISHED QUARTERS BY THE GOVERNMENT. IT WAS STATED THAT "COMMUTATION IS FOR THE PURPOSE OF COMPENSATING AN OFFICER FOR EXPENSES INCURRED IN PROVIDING PRIVATE QUARTERS FOR HIMSELF AND HIS DEPENDENTS WHEN THE GOVERNMENT FAILS TO PROVIDE PUBLIC QUARTERS.

B-137467, OCT 15, 1958

PRECIS-UNAVAILABLE

CAPTAIN C.A. SCHWOB, USAF:

BY LETTER DATED SEPTEMBER 17, 1958, THE DEPUTY DIRECTOR OF ACCOUNTING AND FINANCE, COMPTROLLER, DEPARTMENT OF THE AIR FORCE, FORWARDED YOUR LETTER DATED JULY 15, 1958, AND ENCLOSURES (ASSIGNED AIR FORCE REQUEST NO. 370, BY THE MILITARY PAY AND ALLOWANCE COMMITTEE, DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE), REQUESTING DECISION AS TO THE RIGHT OF CAPTAIN RICHARD S. PARET, UNITED STATES NAVY, TO BE CREDITED ON AND AFTER JULY 1, 1958, WITH BASIC ALLOWANCE FOR QUARTERS ON ACCOUNT OF A DEPENDENT WIFE AND MINOR CHILD WHILE STATIONED IN SAUDI ARABIA.

THERE WAS ENCLOSED WITH THE LETTER OF JULY 15, 1958, A MEMORANDUM DATED JULY 13, 1958, FROM THE OFFICER IN WHICH HE SAYS THAT PERMANENT FAMILY QUARTERS WERE NOT AVAILABLE FOR OCCUPANCY BY HIM AND HIS DEPENDENTS WHEN HIS DEPENDENTS ARRIVED IN SAUDI ARABIA ON JUNE 26, 1958, AND THAT HE WAS FURNISHED TWO ROOMS AND BATH IN THE SAUDI ARAB GOVERNMENT HOTEL. THE OFFICER FURTHER SAYS THAT THE LODGINGS, CONTAINING THREE BEDS AND TWO SMALL CLOTHES LOCKERS, WERE AND ARE BEING PAID OUT OF THE PERSONAL FUNDS OF PRINCE FAHD, MINISTER OF DEFENSE. THE OFFICER STATES THAT HE, IN EFFECT, CONTINUES TO OCCUPY ONE ROOM IN BACHELOR OFFICERS' QUARTERS, AND THAT SINCE HIS FAMILY IS LIVING IN HOTEL ROOMS, HE AND HIS FAMILY ARE FORCED TO DINE AT AN OFFICERS OPEN MESS AT A COST OF $250 TO $300 PER MONTH.

THE BASIC ALLOWANCE FOR QUARTERS AS AUTHORIZED UNDER SECTION 302 OF THE CAREER COMPENSATION ACT OF 1949, AS AMENDED, 37 U.S.C. 252, IS A COMMUTATION OF EXPENSES PAID BY A MEMBER OF THE UNIFORMED SERVICES FOR PRIVATE QUARTERS WHEN HE IS NOT FURNISHED QUARTERS BY THE GOVERNMENT. THE COST OF MEALS HAS NO BEARING ON HIS RIGHT TO SUCH ALLOWANCE. IN THE CASE OF BYRNE V. UNITED STATES, 87 C. CLS. 241, IT WAS STATED THAT "COMMUTATION IS FOR THE PURPOSE OF COMPENSATING AN OFFICER FOR EXPENSES INCURRED IN PROVIDING PRIVATE QUARTERS FOR HIMSELF AND HIS DEPENDENTS WHEN THE GOVERNMENT FAILS TO PROVIDE PUBLIC QUARTERS. ON THIS THEORY ONLY CAN RECOVERY BE HAD AND, AS IT APPEARS IN THIS CASE THAT THE OFFICER HAS NOT BEEN PUT TO ANY EXPENSE, NO RIGHT TO REIMBURSEMENT HAS BEEN ESTABLISHED."

IT HAS BEEN HELD IN DECISIONS OF OUR OFFICE THAT WHERE AN OFFICER IS FURNISHED QUARTERS AT HIS PLACE OF DUTY WITHOUT CHARGE, HE IS NOT ENTITLED TO THE RENTAL ALLOWANCE PROVIDED FOR BY LAW, EVEN THOUGH THE QUARTERS HE OCCUPIED WERE FURNISHED BY A FOREIGN GOVERNMENT, RATHER THAN BY THE UNITED STATES. 21 COMP. GEN. 1065; 27 ID. 479. IN THE CASES CONSIDERED IN THOSE DECISIONS THE CIRCUMSTANCES WERE SUCH THAT THE QUARTERS FURNISHED WERE CONSIDERED AS HAVING BEEN FURNISHED ON BEHALF OF THE UNITED STATES. THE OFFICER HERE INVOLVED INCURRED NO EXPENSES FOR THE RENTAL OF QUARTERS FOR HIS FAMILY, SUCH QUARTERS HAVING BEEN FURNISHED BY AN OFFICIAL OF A FOREIGN GOVERNMENT, AND THE PRINCIPLES STATED IN THE CITED DECISIONS APPEAR TO BE PROPERLY FOR APPLICATION IN THIS CASE.

ACCORDINGLY, PAYMENT TO THE OFFICER OF A BASIC ALLOWANCE FOR QUARTERS ON ACCOUNT OF DEPENDENTS FOR THE PERIOD ON AND AFTER JULY 1, 1958, IS NOT AUTHORIZED.