B-138225, FEB 3, 1959

B-138225: Feb 3, 1959

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LEONARD WHOSE POST OF DUTY IS WASHINGTON. WAS ON TEMPORARY DUTY AT RICHMOND. HE WAS DIRECTED TO RETURN TO HIS POST OF DUTY FOR WEEKENDS. HE WAS ACCOMPANIED BY FOUR OTHER GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES. WHOSE HOMES ARE IN THE WASHINGTON METROPOLITAN AREA. WHO WERE RETURNING TO WASHINGTON FOR THE WEEKEND. YOU SAY THAT THE INTERNAL REVENUE SERVICE WAS UNDER OBLIGATION TO PROVIDE TRANSPORTATION FOR THE RETURN OF THESE EMPLOYEES TO THEIR HEADQUARTERS OVER THE WEEKEND. WOULD HAVE BEEN $69.06. YOUR DOUBT IN THE MATTER ARISES AS TO WHETHER THE TRAVEL PERFORMED IS TO BE CONSIDERED OFFICIAL BUSINESS WITHIN THE MEANING OF SECTION 364 OF THE TRAVEL REGULATIONS. THAT SECTION PERMITS THE HIRE OF A SPECIAL CONVEYANCE BY EMPLOYEES ENGAGED ON OFFICIAL BUSINESS WHEN THE USE OF SUCH FACILITY IS AUTHORIZED OR APPROVED AS ADVANTAGEOUS TO THE GOVERNMENT.

B-138225, FEB 3, 1959

PRECIS-UNAVAILABLE

BETTY C. SCARIET, TREASURY DEPARTMENT:

ON DECEMBER 19, 1958, THE ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT SECRETARY, FORWARDED HERE YOUR LETTER OF NOVEMBER 18, 1958, REFERENCE C:F:AS:MFR, REQUESTING OUR DECISION UPON THE PROPRIETY OF CERTIFYING FOR PAYMENT A TRANSMITTED VOUCHER IN FAVOR OF MR. WILLIAM L. LEONARD FOR $41.40 REPRESENTING CAR RENTAL EXPENSES INCURRED ON THE WEEKEND OF OCTOBER 10 TO 13, 1958, WHILE TRAVELING TO HIS HOME OVER THE WEEKEND.

THE RECORD SHOWS THAT MR. LEONARD WHOSE POST OF DUTY IS WASHINGTON, D. C., WAS ON TEMPORARY DUTY AT RICHMOND, VIRGINIA. BECAUSE OF THE AVAILABILITY AND ECONOMY OF TRANSPORTATION BETWEEN RICHMOND AND WASHINGTON, HE WAS DIRECTED TO RETURN TO HIS POST OF DUTY FOR WEEKENDS. MR. LEONARD RENTED AN AUTOMOBILE FROM THE RENT-A-CAR CO., INC., AT RICHMOND FOR TRAVEL TO WASHINGTON OVER THE WEEKEND. HE LEFT RICHMOND AT 4 P.M., AND ARRIVED IN WASHINGTON AT 8 P.M., OCTOBER 10, 1958. HE LEFT WASHINGTON AT 4:30 A.M., AND ARRIVED IN RICHMOND AT 8:30 A.M., OCTOBER 13, 1958. HE WAS ACCOMPANIED BY FOUR OTHER GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES, WHOSE HOMES ARE IN THE WASHINGTON METROPOLITAN AREA, AND WHO WERE RETURNING TO WASHINGTON FOR THE WEEKEND. YOU SAY THAT THE INTERNAL REVENUE SERVICE WAS UNDER OBLIGATION TO PROVIDE TRANSPORTATION FOR THE RETURN OF THESE EMPLOYEES TO THEIR HEADQUARTERS OVER THE WEEKEND. MR. LEONARD HAS BEEN PAID PER DIEM FOR THE TRAVEL INVOLVED, AND HE HAS FURNISHED A RECEIPT SHOWING THE TOTAL COST OF THE RENTAL OF THE CAR AS REQUIRED BY SECTION 11.1E OF THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS. ALSO, THE USE OF THE AUTOMOBILE HIRED IN LIEU OF PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION HAS BEEN APPROVED AS ADVANTAGEOUS TO THE GOVERNMENT. THE RECORD SHOWS THAT THE COST OF THE RETURN OF THE EMPLOYEES HAD TRAVEL BEEN PERFORMED BY COMMON CARRIER, INCLUDING TAXICABS TO AND FROM COMMON CARRIER TERMINALS, WOULD HAVE BEEN $69.06.

YOUR DOUBT IN THE MATTER ARISES AS TO WHETHER THE TRAVEL PERFORMED IS TO BE CONSIDERED OFFICIAL BUSINESS WITHIN THE MEANING OF SECTION 364 OF THE TRAVEL REGULATIONS. THAT SECTION PERMITS THE HIRE OF A SPECIAL CONVEYANCE BY EMPLOYEES ENGAGED ON OFFICIAL BUSINESS WHEN THE USE OF SUCH FACILITY IS AUTHORIZED OR APPROVED AS ADVANTAGEOUS TO THE GOVERNMENT. SECTION 6.4 OF THE TRAVEL REGULATIONS PROVIDES IN PART AS FOLLOWS:

"6.4 RETURN TO OFFICIAL STATION. - AT THE DISCRETION OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICIALS A TRAVELER MAY BE REQUIRED TO RETURN TO HIS OFFICIAL STATION FOR NONWORK DAYS. ***"

THE TRAVEL REGULATION QUOTED ABOVE PERMITS ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICIALS AT THEIR DISCRETION TO REQUIRE EMPLOYEES TO RETURN TO HEADQUARTERS FOR NONWORK DAYS, AND AS MR. LEONARD AND THE OTHER EMPLOYEES WERE DIRECTED TO RETURN TO THEIR OFFICIAL STATION FOR WEEKENDS UNDER THE CIRCUMSTANCES RELATED ABOVE, THE TRAVEL IS TO BE CONSIDERED AS BEING PERFORMED ON OFFICIAL BUSINESS.

SINCE THE USE OF THE SPECIAL CONVEYANCE WAS APPROVED AS ADVANTAGEOUS TO THE GOVERNMENT AND A RECEIPT HAS BEEN FURNISHED SHOWING THE COST THEREOF AS REQUIRED BY THE REGULATIONS, THE TRAVEL VOUCHER, RETURNED TOGETHER WITH ATTACHMENTS, MAY BE CERTIFIED FOR PAYMENT, IF OTHERWISE PROPER.