B-141560, JAN. 15, 1960

B-141560: Jan 15, 1960

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REQUESTING A DECISION AS TO WHETHER PAYMENT IS AUTHORIZED ON A VOUCHER IN THE AMOUNT OF $921.50 REPRESENTING TWO INVOICES IN THE AMOUNTS OF $765.50 AND $156 SUBMITTED BY THE GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION AS REIMBURSEMENT FOR CONSTRUCTION OF PARTITIONS AND ALTERATIONS TO A LEASED BUILDING HAS BEEN REFERRED HERE BY LETTER OF DECEMBER 17. IT IS EXPLAINED THAT THE INVOLVED LEASE IS ADMINISTERED BY THE GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION IN A METROPOLITAN AREA COVERED BY REORGANIZATION PLAN NO. 18 OF 1950. IT IS STATED THAT BY LETTER OF JUNE 11. 1959" WERE FURNISHED THE LITTLE ROCK OFFICE BY HEADQUARTERS. IT IS STATED FURTHER THAT WHILE THE INVOLVED APPROPRIATION PROVIDED FOR UNDER TITLE III OF THE "DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE APPROPRIATION ACT.

B-141560, JAN. 15, 1960

TO MR. W. E. PILCHER, DISBURSING OFFICER, DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY:

YOUR LETTER OF SEPTEMBER 10, 1959 (SWLFE), REQUESTING A DECISION AS TO WHETHER PAYMENT IS AUTHORIZED ON A VOUCHER IN THE AMOUNT OF $921.50 REPRESENTING TWO INVOICES IN THE AMOUNTS OF $765.50 AND $156 SUBMITTED BY THE GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION AS REIMBURSEMENT FOR CONSTRUCTION OF PARTITIONS AND ALTERATIONS TO A LEASED BUILDING HAS BEEN REFERRED HERE BY LETTER OF DECEMBER 17, 1959 (FINEK 113/10 SEP. 59 GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION), FROM THE CHIEF OF FINANCE. IT IS EXPLAINED THAT THE INVOLVED LEASE IS ADMINISTERED BY THE GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION IN A METROPOLITAN AREA COVERED BY REORGANIZATION PLAN NO. 18 OF 1950, 64 STAT. 1270, 5 U.S.C. 133Z-15, AND THAT THE LEASED BUILDING HAS BEEN UNDER THE JURISDICTION OF GSA FOR APPROXIMATELY 7 OR 8 YEARS.

IT IS STATED THAT BY LETTER OF JUNE 11, 1959, THE DISTRICT ENGINEER, LITTLE ROCK DISTRICT, REQUESTED GSA TO MAKE THE DESIGNATED ALTERATIONS AND TO CONSTRUCT THE PARTITIONS IN THE LEASED BUILDING FOR USE OF THE ARKANSAS MILITARY DISTRICT; THAT IN REPLY OF JUNE 18, 1959, GSA STATED THAT IT WOULD BILL THE LITTLE ROCK DISTRICT IN THE AMOUNT OF $900; AND THAT THE FUNDS CHARGED ON THE ENCLOSED VOUCHER MADE AVAILABLE FROM THE APPROPRIATION "OPERATION AND MAINTENANCE ARMY, 1959" WERE FURNISHED THE LITTLE ROCK OFFICE BY HEADQUARTERS, U.S. ARMY MILITARY DISTRICT, AT LITTLE ROCK IN THE FORM OF AN OBLIGATION AUTHORITY. IT IS STATED FURTHER THAT WHILE THE INVOLVED APPROPRIATION PROVIDED FOR UNDER TITLE III OF THE "DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE APPROPRIATION ACT, 1959" PUBLIC LAW 85-724, APPROVED AUGUST 22, 1958, PROVIDES FOR "REPAIR OF FACILITIES" YOU ARE IN DOUBT AS TO WHETHER THIS PROPERLY COVERS REPAIRS TO LEASED FACILITIES FOR WHICH THE APPROPRIATION OF GSA MAY BE AVAILABLE. IT IS INDICATED THAT YOUR DOUBT IN THE MATTER ARISES BECAUSE OF TWO DECISIONS, B-132396, SEPTEMBER 11, 1958, 38 COMP. GEN. 193, AND B-138598, MARCH 4, 1959, 38 COMP. GEN. 588. YOU RECOGNIZE THAT THE CITED DECISIONS HAVE NO APPLICATION TO THE INVOLVED ALTERATIONS AND REPAIRS ON THE LEASED PREMISES SINCE SAID DECISIONS CONCERN INSTALLATIONS AND BUILDING CHANGES AND IMPROVEMENTS IN GOVERNMENT-OWNED BUILDINGS. YOU STATE, HOWEVER, THAT CERTAIN PARTS OF THE CITED DECISIONS APPEAR TO BE OF A GENERAL NATURE WHICH MIGHT BE CONSTRUED AS PROHIBITING THE PAYMENT FOR ALTERATIONS OF LEASED BUILDINGS SUCH AS INVOLVED IN THE PRESENT CASE.

UNDER AUTHORITY OF REORGANIZATION PLAN NO. 18 OF 1950, GSA ASSUMED RESPONSIBILITY FOR OBTAINING SPACE FOR THE DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE IN 128 CITIES OR URBAN CENTERS INCLUDING LITTLE ROCK. AS A RESULT OF MEETINGS BETWEEN REPRESENTATIVES OF THE PUBLIC BUILDINGS SERVICE, GSA, AND THE DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE, IT WAS DETERMINED THAT EFFECTIVE DECEMBER 1, 1950, THE PUBLIC BUILDINGS SERVICE WOULD PERFORM ALL FUNCTIONS WITH RESPECT TO ACQUIRING GENERAL PURPOSE SPACE IN BUILDINGS BY LEASE, THE ASSIGNMENT AND REASSIGNMENT OF SUCH SPACE, AND THE OPERATION, MAINTENANCE, AND CUSTODY THEREOF WITHIN THE METROPOLITAN AREA OF EACH OF THE ABOVE 128 SELECTED CITIES.

SECTION 3 OF THE ACT OF AUGUST 27, 1935, 49 STAT. 881, AS AMENDED, 40 U.S.C. 304C PROVIDES HAT:

"TO THE EXTENT THAT APPROPRIATIONS OF THE GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION NOT OTHERWISE REQUIRED ARE INADEQUATE THEREFOR, THE ADMINISTRATOR OF GENERAL SERVICES MAY REQUIRE EACH FEDERAL AGENCY TO WHICH LEASED SPACE HAS BEEN ASSIGNED TO PAY PROMPTLY BY CHECK TO THE ADMINISTRATOR OF GENERAL SERVICES OUT OF ITS AVAILABLE APPROPRIATIONS, EITHER IN ADVANCE OR DURING OCCUPANCY OF SUCH SPACE, ALL OR PART OF THE ESTIMATED COST OF RENT, REPAIRS, ALTERATIONS, MAINTENANCE, OPERATION AND MOVING * * *.'

IT APPEARS THAT UNDER THIS PROVISION OF LAW THE ADMINISTRATOR OF GENERAL SERVICES MAY REQUIRE EACH FEDERAL AGENCY TO WHICH LEASED SPACE HAS BEEN ASSIGNED TO PAY--- OUT OF ITS AVAILABLE APPROPRIATIONS--- TO THE GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION ALL OR PART OF THE COST OF ALTERATIONS IN SUCH LEASED SPACE, IF THE APPROPRIATIONS OF THE GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION NOT OTHERWISE REQUIRED ARE INADEQUATE TO PAY SUCH COSTS. AS INDICATED IN YOUR LETTER, THE APPROPRIATION ,OPERATIONS AND MAINTENANCE ARMY, 1959" PROVIDES "FOR EXPENSES, NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR, NECESSARY FOR THE OPERATION AND MAINTENANCE OF THE ARMY, INCLUDING * * * REPAIR OF FACILITIES * * *.' THIS APPROPRIATION MAY BE USED FOR "REPAIR" OF FACILITIES (THE TERM "REPAIR" BEING DEFINED IN ARMY REGULATIONS 420-10, SEPTEMBER 4, 1957, AS INCLUDING SPACE CHANGES SUCH AS HERE INVOLVED) IF FUNDS FOR THE COST OF SUCH WORK ARE NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED THEREFOR. THE APPROPRIATIONS OF THE GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION NOT OTHERWISE REQUIRED ARE INADEQUATE TO PAY FOR THE WORK IN QUESTION, THE ABOVE CITED ARMY APPROPRIATION WOULD APPEAR TO BE AVAILABLE TO PAY FOR THE WORK, SINCE FUNDS FOR THE COST OF SUCH WORK "ARE NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR.' ACCORDINGLY, IF THE ADMINISTRATOR OF GENERAL SERVICES REQUIRES PAYMENT OF THE VOUCHER IN QUESTION PURSUANT TO THE AUTHORITY VESTED IN HIM BY 40 U.S.C. 304C, THE VOUCHER, WHICH IS RETURNED HEREWITH, MAY BE PAID, IF OTHERWISE CORRECT, SUBJECT OF COURSE TO THE 25 PERCENT LIMITATION IN 40 U.S.C. 278A, IF ..END :