B-137544, NOV 19, 1958

B-137544: Nov 19, 1958

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SECRETARY: REFERENCE IS MADE TO A LETTER DATED SEPTEMBER 30. BEFORE SUCH DOCUMENT IS VALID FOR SERVICES. THE VISITORS OR A TEAM MANAGER IN CHARGE OF A GROUP OF VISITORS IS AVAILABLE TO SIGN THE TRANSPORTATION REQUEST AS TRAVELER. DIFFICULTY HAS BEEN EXPERIENCED WHEN IT IS NECESSARY TO REVISE PROGRAM AND TRAVEL ARRANGEMENTS ON SHORT NOTICE FOR A FOREIGN VISITOR WHO IS IN THE FIELD UNACCOMPANIED BY A TEAM MANAGER OR ESCORT. SO THAT THE FOREIGN VISITOR IS NOT AVAILABLE TO SIGN AS TRAVELER IN INSTANCES WHERE THE TRANSPORTATION REQUEST IS ISSUED IN WASHINGTON. IT IS REQUESTED THAT AN EXCEPTION BE GRANTED SO THAT THE TRANSPORTATION REQUESTS MAY BE SIGNED BY A DESIGNATED AGENT FOR THE TRAVELER.

B-137544, NOV 19, 1958

PRECIS-UNAVAILABLE

MR. SECRETARY:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO A LETTER DATED SEPTEMBER 30, 1958, FROM THE ACTING SECRETARY OF LABOR, CONCERNING THE REQUIREMENT OF PARAGRAPH 24 OF APPENDIX A, CHAPTER 2000, TITLE 5 OF OUR POLICY AND PROCEDURES MANUAL, THAT THE SIGNATURE OF THE TRAVELER MUST BE PLACED IN THE SPACE PROVIDED THEREFOR ON STANDARD FORM NO. 1169, THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA TRANSPORTATION REQUEST, BEFORE SUCH DOCUMENT IS VALID FOR SERVICES.

THE LETTER STATES THAT THE UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF LABOR HAS THE RESPONSIBILITY FOR ARRANGING PROGRAMS FOR CERTAIN FOREIGN VISITORS, WHICH USUALLY INVOLVES THE ISSUANCE OF TREANSPORTATION REQUESTS FOR THE USE OF THE PARTICIPANTS. IN MOST INSTANCES, THE VISITORS OR A TEAM MANAGER IN CHARGE OF A GROUP OF VISITORS IS AVAILABLE TO SIGN THE TRANSPORTATION REQUEST AS TRAVELER. HOWEVER, DIFFICULTY HAS BEEN EXPERIENCED WHEN IT IS NECESSARY TO REVISE PROGRAM AND TRAVEL ARRANGEMENTS ON SHORT NOTICE FOR A FOREIGN VISITOR WHO IS IN THE FIELD UNACCOMPANIED BY A TEAM MANAGER OR ESCORT, SO THAT THE FOREIGN VISITOR IS NOT AVAILABLE TO SIGN AS TRAVELER IN INSTANCES WHERE THE TRANSPORTATION REQUEST IS ISSUED IN WASHINGTON, D. C. THEREFORE, IT IS REQUESTED THAT AN EXCEPTION BE GRANTED SO THAT THE TRANSPORTATION REQUESTS MAY BE SIGNED BY A DESIGNATED AGENT FOR THE TRAVELER, WITH A FULL EXPLANATION ON THE BACK OF THE TRANSPORTATION REQUEST AS TO THE AUTHORITY OF THE AGENT SO SIGNING TO ACT FOR THE TRAVELER.

THE REGULATIONS INVOLVED WERE FORMULATED AFTER CONSIDERABLE DISCUSSION WITH GOVERNMENT AGENCIES AND REPRESENTATIVES OF THE TRANSPORTATION INDUSTRY AS BEING BEST DESIGNED TO PROTECT THE INTERESTS OF THE GOVERNMENT, THE TRAVELER, AND THE CARRIERS. UNLESS UNUSUAL OR EMERGENT SITUATIONS ARISE WHICH ARE PRODUCTIVE OF DISADVANTAGEOUS AND UNECONOMICAL OPERATIONS BECAUSE OF ADHERENCE TO THE SPECIFIED REQUIREMENTS OF THE REGULATIONS, WE ARE RELUCTANT TO APPROVE REQUESTS FOR EXCEPTIONS TO SUCH REGULATIONS. WHILE WE RECOGNIZE, IN APPROPRIATE SITUATIONS, THE DESIRABILITY OF CONCURRING IN THE ESTABLISHMENT OF ANY EFFECTIVE MEASURES WHICH CONTRIBUTE TO MORE EFFICIENT AND ECONOMICAL ADMINISTRATIVE OPERATIONS WITHOUT DETRIMENT TO THE GOVERNMENT'S OVERALL INTERESTS, WE BELIEVE THAT CARE SHOULD BE TAKEN TO LIMIT THE RELIANCE ON AN EXEMPTION FROM THE SIGNATURE REQUIREMENTS OF PARAGRAPH 24 OF APPENDIX A TO EXCEPTIONAL SITUATIONS. THE SITUATIONS YOU DESCRIBE GENERALLY APPEAR TO JUSTIFY EXCUSING A FAILURE TO OBTAIN THE TRAVELER'S SIGNATURE, ALTHOUGH IT SHOULD BE NOTED THAT, ORDINARILY, INCONVENIENCE ALONE IS NOT SUFFICIENT TO AUTHORIZE A DEPARTURE FROM OUR REGULATIONS IN THIS RESPECT.

ACCORDINGLY, WE WILL APPROVE, FOR THE TIME BEING, RESOURCES BY YOUR DEPARTMENT TO THE DESIGNATED AGENT PROCEDURE IN THE CIRCUMSTANCES DESCRIBED IN THE LETTER OF THE ACTING SECRETARY WHEN THE FOREIGN VISITOR IS NOT AVAILABLE TO SIGN THE TRANSPORTATION REQUEST AS TRAVELER.

THE SITUATIONS IN WHICH THE USE OF THE DESIGNATED AGENT PROCEDURE IS AUTHORIZED IT WILL BE NECESSARY THAT THE NAME OF THE ACTUAL TRAVELER BE PLACED IN THE SPACE FOLLOWING THE WORDS "FOR USE OF" ON STANDARD FORM NO. 1169, RATHER THAN THE NAME OF THE DESIGNATED AGENT WHOSE NAME WILL APPEAR IN THE SPACE DESIGNATED FOR THE TRAVELER'S SIGNATURE. THE WORDS "DESIGNATED AGENT" SHOULD BE PLACED ON OR BELOW THE LINE ON WHICH THE TRAVELER'S SIGNATURE ORDINARILY APPEARS. ALSO, A TYPED OR RUBBER STAMP NOTATION SHOULD BE PLACED ON THE REVERSE SIDE OF THE TRANSPORTATION REQUEST IN SUBSTANTIALLY THE FOLLOWING FORM:

"JOHN BEE, THE DESIGNATED AGENT, WAS DIRECTED THROUGH U. S. DEPARTMENT OF LABOR CHANNELS TO SIGN THIS T/R AS AGENT FOR THE TRAVELER WHO WAS NOT AVAILABLE FOR PERSONNEL SIGNATURE AT THE TIME THE TRANSPORTATION RESERVATIONS WERE MADE. THIS PROCEDURE APPROVED BY THE COMPTROLLER GENERAL OF THE UNITED STATES, B-137544, ON (SHOW DATE OF THIS LETTER)."

THIS APPROVAL IS GRANTED UPON THE ASSURANCE THAT NECESSARY AND ADEQUATE CONTROLS, AS INDICATED, WILL BE MAINTAINED BY YOUR DEPARTMENT.

OUR TRANSPORTATION DIVISION IS BEING INSTRUCTED TO SURVEY THE RESULTS OF THE USE OF THE PROCEDURE APPROVED HEREIN AFTER A REASONABLE PERIOD OF TIME SUFFICIENT TO PERMIT A PROPER EVALUATION OF THE RESULTS OF THE PROCEDURE AND TO ENABLE A DETERMINATION AS TO WHETHER THE CONTINUED USE OF SUCH PROCEDURE IS JUSTIFIED.