B-143122, JUL. 27, 1960

B-143122: Jul 27, 1960

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YOUR CLAIM IS PREMISED UPON THE PROPOSITION THAT. IN SUPPORT OF YOUR CLAIM YOU HAVE SUBMITTED PHOTOSTATIC COPIES OF TWO RENTAL RECEIPTS FOR JANUARY 1958. TO THE AIR FORCE FINANCE OFFICE YOU WROTE THAT THE MATTER HAD BEEN INVESTIGATED BY THE INSPECTOR GENERAL OF THE AIR FORCE AND THAT A FULL CASE DOCUMENTATION OF ALL THE CIRCUMSTANCES SURROUNDING YOUR CLAIM WAS ON FILE AT THE INSPECTOR GENERAL'S OFFICE AT CHATEAUROUX. WHEN YOU WERE PREPARING TO DEPART CHATEAUROUX AIR STATION. YOUR WIFE APPEARED AT THE HOUSING OFFICE FOR THE PURPOSE OF PAYING THE JANUARY RENT AND WAS ADVISED THAT THE RECORDS INDICATED THAT THE RENT HAD BEEN PAID. IT IS REPORTED THAT NEITHER YOU NOR YOUR WIFE COULD RECALL HAVING PREVIOUSLY PAID THE RENT AND.

B-143122, JUL. 27, 1960

TO MR. RICHARD WALSH:

BY LETTER POSTMARKED MAY 26, 1960, YOU WROTE TO THE GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE REQUESTING REVIEW OF OUR ACTION OF MAY 13, 1960, WHICH DISALLOWED YOUR CLAIM FOR REFUND OF $125. YOUR CLAIM IS PREMISED UPON THE PROPOSITION THAT, WHILE EMPLOYED BY THE UNITED STATES AIR FORCE AT CHATEAUROUX, FRANCE, YOU PAID DUPLICATE RENTAL FOR JANUARY 1958 FOR QUARTERS OCCUPIED BY YOU AT CITE DE TOUVENT. IN SUPPORT OF YOUR CLAIM YOU HAVE SUBMITTED PHOTOSTATIC COPIES OF TWO RENTAL RECEIPTS FOR JANUARY 1958, EACH IN THE AMOUNT OF $125.

IN A LETTER DATED OCTOBER 9, 1958, TO THE AIR FORCE FINANCE OFFICE YOU WROTE THAT THE MATTER HAD BEEN INVESTIGATED BY THE INSPECTOR GENERAL OF THE AIR FORCE AND THAT A FULL CASE DOCUMENTATION OF ALL THE CIRCUMSTANCES SURROUNDING YOUR CLAIM WAS ON FILE AT THE INSPECTOR GENERAL'S OFFICE AT CHATEAUROUX, FRANCE.

WE REQUESTED A REPORT IN THE MATTER FROM THE INSPECTOR GENERAL OF THE AIR FORCE ON JUNE 15, 1960. THE ASSISTANT TO THE INSPECTOR GENERAL REPORTED ON JULY 19, 1960, THAT IN JULY 1958, WHEN YOU WERE PREPARING TO DEPART CHATEAUROUX AIR STATION, YOU DISCOVERED TWO RECEIPTS FOR RENTAL PAYMENT MADE DURING THE MONTH OF JANUARY 1958, BUT THAT DEPOSITS MADE BY THE HOUSING OFFICER TO THE BASE FINANCE OFFICER REFLECTED ONLY ONE DEPOSIT MADE BY YOU FOR THAT MONTH. HE FURTHER REPORTED THAT THE INVESTIGATION FAILED TO SUBSTANTIATE YOUR CLAIM OF DUPLICATE RENTAL PAYMENT.

THE INVESTIGATION REVEALED THAT ON JANUARY 9, 1958, YOUR WIFE APPEARED AT THE HOUSING OFFICE FOR THE PURPOSE OF PAYING THE JANUARY RENT AND WAS ADVISED THAT THE RECORDS INDICATED THAT THE RENT HAD BEEN PAID. IT IS REPORTED THAT NEITHER YOU NOR YOUR WIFE COULD RECALL HAVING PREVIOUSLY PAID THE RENT AND, IN ORDER TO AVOID POSSIBLE DELINQUENCY, YOU DECIDED TO MAKE PAYMENT. THE HOUSING OFFICE PERSONNEL FELT THAT YOU HAD BEEN CREDITED ERRONEOUSLY WITH ANOTHER TENANT'S PAYMENT ON JANUARY 2, 1958, AND THEREFORE HELD THE MONEY RECEIVED FROM MRS. WALSH UNTIL THE OTHER TENANT COULD BE IDENTIFIED. THE OTHER TENANT WAS SUBSEQUENTLY IDENTIFIED AND RETURNED THE RECEIPT BEARING YOUR NAME. THE REPORT STATES THAT APPARENTLY THE ERRONEOUSLY ISSUED RECEIPT, INSTEAD OF BEING DESTROYED, WAS LATER RETURNED TO YOU AND THIS ACCOUNTS FOR YOUR POSSESSION OF TWO RECEIPTS FOR THE MONTH OF JANUARY 1958.

WHILE A RECEIPT IS EVIDENCE OF HIGH ORDER BECAUSE IT IS THE CREDITOR'S ADMISSION AGAINST INTEREST THAT THE DEBTOR HAS PAID HIS DEBT, IT IS SUBJECT TO EXPLANATION. WE FEEL REQUIRED TO ACCEPT THE REPORT OF THE INSPECTOR GENERAL AS SUFFICIENT EXPLANATION OF YOUR POSSESSION OF THE TWO RENTAL RECEIPTS. ON DISPUTED QUESTIONS OF FACT BETWEEN CLAIMANTS AND ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICERS OF THE GOVERNMENT, IT IS THE ESTABLISHED RULE OF THE ACCOUNTING OFFICERS TO ACCEPT THE STATEMENT OF FACTS AS FURNISHED BY THE ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICERS IN THE ABSENCE OF EVIDENCE SUFFICIENT TO OVERCOME THE PRESUMPTION OF THE CORRECTNESS THEREOF.

ACCORDINGLY, OUR PREVIOUS ACTION IN THE MATTER IS SUSTAINED AND YOUR CLAIM UPON REVIEW IS DENIED.