B-141917, FEBRUARY 16, 1960, 39 COMP. GEN. 590

B-141917: Feb 16, 1960

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MILITARY PERSONNEL - PER DIEM - TEMPORARY DUTY - BARRACKS SHIPS USED IN CONNECTION WITH VESSEL CONVERSION A BARRACKS SHIP WITHOUT ANY PROPULSION PLANT TO WHICH NAVY PERSONNEL ARE REQUIRED TO REPORT FOR TEMPORARY DUTY. IN CONNECTION WITH THE FITTING-OUT OR CONVERSION OF VESSELS IN THE AREA AND ON WHICH BERTHING AND MESSING FACILITIES ARE PROVIDED. PER DIEM AS PRESCRIBED IN PARAGRAPH 4206 OF THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS FOR TEMPORARY DUTY IN CONNECTION WITH THE FITTING-OUT OR CONVERSION OF VESSELS IS FOR PAYMENT. PROVIDED THAT DEDUCTIONS ARE MADE FOR QUARTERS AND FOR MEALS IN THE CASE OF ENLISTED MEMBERS FURNISHED ON THE BARRACKS SHIP. 1960: REFERENCE IS MADE TO LETTER OF FEBRUARY 2. REQUESTING AN ADVANCE DECISION AS TO WHETHER MEMBERS OF THE UNIFORMED SERVICES ARE ENTITLED TO PER DIEM WHILE IN THE PERFORMANCE OF TEMPORARY DUTY IN CONNECTION WITH THE FITTING OUT OR CONVERSION OF A VESSEL IN THE CIRCUMSTANCES DESCRIBED IN THE LETTER AS FOLLOWS: THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS.

B-141917, FEBRUARY 16, 1960, 39 COMP. GEN. 590

MILITARY PERSONNEL - PER DIEM - TEMPORARY DUTY - BARRACKS SHIPS USED IN CONNECTION WITH VESSEL CONVERSION A BARRACKS SHIP WITHOUT ANY PROPULSION PLANT TO WHICH NAVY PERSONNEL ARE REQUIRED TO REPORT FOR TEMPORARY DUTY, IN CONNECTION WITH THE FITTING-OUT OR CONVERSION OF VESSELS IN THE AREA AND ON WHICH BERTHING AND MESSING FACILITIES ARE PROVIDED, NEED NOT BE REGARDED AS A GOVERNMENT VESSEL UNDER PARAGRAPH 4201-8 OF THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS WHICH PROHIBITS PER DIEM FOR TEMPORARY DUTY ABOARD GOVERNMENT VESSELS; THEREFORE, PER DIEM AS PRESCRIBED IN PARAGRAPH 4206 OF THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS FOR TEMPORARY DUTY IN CONNECTION WITH THE FITTING-OUT OR CONVERSION OF VESSELS IS FOR PAYMENT, PROVIDED THAT DEDUCTIONS ARE MADE FOR QUARTERS AND FOR MEALS IN THE CASE OF ENLISTED MEMBERS FURNISHED ON THE BARRACKS SHIP.

TO THE SECRETARY OF THE NAVY, FEBRUARY 16, 1960:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO LETTER OF FEBRUARY 2, 1960, FROM THE ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF THE NAVY ( PERSONNEL AND RESERVE FORCES), PDTATAC CONTROL NO. 60-6, REQUESTING AN ADVANCE DECISION AS TO WHETHER MEMBERS OF THE UNIFORMED SERVICES ARE ENTITLED TO PER DIEM WHILE IN THE PERFORMANCE OF TEMPORARY DUTY IN CONNECTION WITH THE FITTING OUT OR CONVERSION OF A VESSEL IN THE CIRCUMSTANCES DESCRIBED IN THE LETTER AS FOLLOWS:

THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS, PARAGRAPH 4206, AUTHORIZE A PER DIEM ALLOWANCE TO MEMBERS ASSIGNED TO TEMPORARY DUTY IN CONNECTION WITH THE FITTING-OUT OR CONVERSION OF A VESSEL. HOWEVER, A SITUATION HAS ARISEN AT THE BETHLEHEM STEEL COMPANY, QUINCY, MASSACHUSETTS, WHICH NECESSITATES A REQUEST FOR ADVANCE DECISION CONCERNING ENTITLEMENT TO THIS PER DIEM ALLOWANCES.

AT PRESENT THERE ARE THREE VESSELS BEING FITTED OUT OR CONVERTED AT THIS LOCATION AND THERE ARE AT LEAST THREE MORE SCHEDULED FOR THE FUTURE. BECAUSE OF THE NONAVAILABILITY OF GOVERNMENT QUARTERS AND MESSING FACILITIES IN THIS AREA, AND IN THE INTEREST OF ECONOMY OF PUBLIC FUNDS, A BARRACKS SHIP ( NON-1SELF-1PROPELLED), THE APL 29, FROM THE ATLANTIC RESERVE FLEET, WAS ACTIVATED AND TOWED TO QUINCY.

THE APL 29 IS A MISCELLANEOUS SERVICE CRAFT WHICH IS NOT A COMMISSIONED SHIP OF THE NAVY AND, THEREFORE, HAS NO COMMANDING OFFICER. FOR ADMINISTRATIVE PURPOSES, AN OFFICER-IN-CHARGE IS DESIGNATED. THE APL PROVIDES MESSING FACILITIES IN ADDITION TO QUARTERS BUT PROVIDES NO LAUNDRY, COBBLER, BARBER, SHIPS' STORE OR OTHER FACILITIES FOR THE 250 ENLISTED PERSONNEL PERFORMING TEMPORARY DUTY IN CONNECTION WITH CONVERSION OF THE TYPE STATED BELOW.

THE APL HAS NO PROPULSION PLANT THAT WOULD ENABLE IT TO MOVE UNDER ITS OWN POWER. THE NAVY COMPTROLLER MANUAL STATES IN PARAGRAPH 1044060-2," . . . FOR THE PURPOSE OF ENTITLEMENT TO SPECIAL PAY FOR SEA DUTY, THE DEFINITION OF "VESSEL" OR "SHIP" WILL MEAN A SELF PROPELLED VESSEL . .;, SO, IN THESE CIRCUMSTANCES, MEN ON BOARD AN APL WOULD NOT BE ENTITLED TO CREDIT OF SEA PAY.

THE ORDERS OF PERSONNEL WHO ARE TO PERFORM THE TEMPORARY DUTY DISCUSSED HEREIN STATE,". . . REPORT TO OFFICER-IN-CHARGE APL 29 FOR TEMPORARY DUTY IN CONNECTION WITH THE CONVERSION OF THE USS SPRINGFIELD (CLG-7). . .;, THIS IS IN CONSONANCE WITH BUREAU OF NAVAL PERSONNEL POLICY WHICH CALLS FOR PERSONNEL IN THE CASE OF FITTING-OUT OR CONVERSION OF A VESSEL TO REPORT TO THE ACTIVITY RESPONSIBLE FOR THEIR BERTHING AND MESSING. HOWEVER, THE ACTUAL PERFORMANCE OF THEIR DUTY IS WITH THE VESSEL BEING CONVERTED OR FITTED-OUT, AS SPECIFIED IN THEIR ORDERS. THE NATURE OF THE TEMPORARY DUTY THAT THESE MEN ARE PERFORMING IS IDENTICAL TO TEMPORARY DUTY IN CONNECTION WITH FITTING OUT OR CONVERSION OF VESSELS AT OTHER LOCATIONS WHERE THE MEN INVOLVED LIVE IN BARRACKS ASHORE. IN ADDITION, THEIR TOTAL EXPENSES ARE GREATER THAN THOSE INCURRED BY SUCH MEMBERS WHO ARE QUARTERED AND SUBSISTED IN A BARRACKS AT A NAVAL SHIPYARD OR SIMILAR INSTALLATION WHERE EXCHANGE FACILITIES ARE AVAILABLE.

IN THE VIEW OF THE SECRETARY OF THE NAVY, MEMBERS PERFORMING TEMPORARY DUTY IN THE INSTANT CASE ARE IN THE IDENTICAL SITUATION, FROM A QUARTERS AND MESSING STANDPOINT, AS MEMBERS ORDERED TO SIMILAR TEMPORARY DUTY AT A NAVAL SHIPYARD. BY BOTH THE ABOVE DEFINITION AND THE INTENT OF JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS, THE SECRETARY DOES NOT CONSIDER A BARRACKS SHIP TO COME WITHIN THE DEFINITION OF GOVERNMENT VESSEL AND THEREFORE DOES NOT CONSIDER THE PROVISIONS OF JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS, PARAGRAPH 4201, ITEM 8 TO PROHIBIT THE PAYMENT OF OTHERWISE PROPER PER DIEM TO MEMBERS PERFORMING TEMPORARY DUTY OF THE NATURE SPECIFIED, UNDER THE ORDERS SPECIFIED. HOWEVER, IN VIEW OF THE LARGE NUMBER OF MEN PRESENTLY INVOLVED, THE CONTINUING NATURE OF THIS PROGRAM AND THE HARMFUL EFFECT ON MORALE OF ANY FUTURE ADVERSE RULING, YOUR DECISION AS TO THE PER DIEM ENTITLEMENT OF MEMBERS PERFORMING SUCH TEMPORARY DUTY IS REQUESTED.

SECTION 303 (A) OF THE CAREER COMPENSATION ACT OF 1949, 63 STAT. 813, AS AMENDED, 37 U.S.C. 253, PROVIDES THAT UNDER REGULATIONS PRESCRIBED BY THE SECRETARIES CONCERNED, MEMBERS OF THE UNIFORMED SERVICES SHALL BE ENTITLED TO RECEIVE TRAVEL AND TRANSPORTATION ALLOWANCES FOR TRAVEL PERFORMED UNDER COMPETENT ORDERS UPON A CHANGE OF PERMANENT STATION, OR OTHERWISE, OR WHEN AWAY FROM THEIR DESIGNATED POSTS OF DUTY.

WHILE PARAGRAPH 4201-8 OF THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS PROHIBITS THE PAYMENT OF PER DIEM TO MEMBERS OF THE UNIFORMED SERVICES FOR ANY PERIOD OF TEMPORARY DUTY OR TRAINING DUTY PERFORMED ABOARD A GOVERNMENT VESSEL, SUCH LIMITATION MAY NOT BE APPLIED IN CASES WHERE MEMBERS ARE ASSIGNED TO TEMPORARY DUTY IN CONNECTION WITH THE FITTING OUT OR CONVERSION OF A VESSEL. THE TERM "A GOVERNMENT VESSEL" AS USED IN PARAGRAPH 4201-8 IS NOT REGARDED AS REFERRING TO A VESSEL WHICH IS IN THE PROCESS OF BEING FITTED OUT OR CONVERTED AT SHORE INSTALLATION AND BEFORE IT IS COMMISSIONED AND PLACED IN SERVICE.

PARAGRAPH 4206 OF THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS PROVIDES THAT WHEN A MEMBER OF THE UNIFORMED SERVICES IS ASSIGNED TO TEMPORARY DUTY IN CONNECTION WITH THE FITTING OUT OR CONVERSION OF A VESSEL, HE IS AUTHORIZED A PER DIEM ALLOWANCE, AS PRESCRIBED IN PARAGRAPH 4205-5 OF SUCH REGULATIONS, DURING THE FITTING OUT OR CONVERSION PERIOD INCLUDING THE DAY OF COMMISSIONING OR PLACING IN SERVICE AND FOR THE DAY OF DECOMMISSIONING OR PLACING OUT OF SERVICE, SUCH PER DIEM TO COMMENCE ON THE DAY FOLLOWING THE DAY OF ARRIVAL AT THE LOCATION OF SUCH VESSEL. THESE PROVISIONS OF THE REGULATIONS CLEARLY AUTHORIZE THE PAYMENT OF PER DIEM TO MEMBERS ASSIGNED TO TEMPORARY DUTY IN CONNECTION WITH THE FITTING OR CONVERSION OF A VESSEL, WITH APPROPRIATE DEDUCTIONS TO BE MADE FOR GOVERNMENT QUARTERS AND--- IN THE CASE OF ENLISTED MEMBERS--- MEALS FURNISHED. THUS, IT WOULD SEEM TO BE IMMATERIAL, INSOFAR AS PAYMENT OF PER DIEM IS CONCERNED, THAT A MEMBER OF THE FITTING OUT OR CONVERSION CREW OF A VESSEL IS FURNISHED QUARTERS AND SUBSISTENCE ON A BARRACKS SHIP SUCH AS THE ONE HERE INVOLVED WHICH IS NOT CONSIDERED TO BE A GOVERNMENT VESSEL WITHIN THE CONTEMPLATION OF PARAGRAPH 4201-8, JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS, PROPER DEDUCTIONS FOR QUARTERS AND--- IN CASE OF ENLISTED MEMBERS--- FOR MEALS FURNISHED BEING MADE IN COMPUTING THE PER DIEM PAYABLE.

HENCE, IT IS CONCLUDED THAT MEMBERS OF THE UNIFORMED SERVICES, WHO ARE BY COMPETENT ORDERS ASSIGNED TO TEMPORARY DUTY IN CONNECTION WITH THE FITTING OUT OR CONVERSION OF A VESSEL IN THE CIRCUMSTANCES DESCRIBED IN THE LETTER OF THE ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF THE NAVY, ARE ENTITLED TO PER DIEM UNDER THE APPLICABLE PROVISIONS OF THE STATUTE AND REGULATIONS. YOUR QUESTION IS ANSWERED ACCORDINGLY.