B-143497, NOVEMBER 7, 1960, 40 COMP. GEN. 268

B-143497: Nov 7, 1960

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MILITARY PERSONNEL - STEWARDS ASSIGNED TO OFFICERS ASSIGNED PUBLIC QUARTERS - TRAVEL STATUS THE RESTRICTION AGAINST THE ASSIGNMENT OF STEWARDS TO OFFICERS WHO ARE NOT ASSIGNED PUBLIC QUARTERS IN THE REGULATIONS IMPLEMENTING 10 U.S.C. 7579 DOES NOT PREVENT THE UTILIZATION OF A STEWARD ASSIGNED TO DUTY IN PUBLIC QUARTERS OF AN OFFICER FOR THE PERFORMANCE OF OTHER AUTHORIZED DUTIES AND. SUCH TEMPORARY DUTY FOR PER DIEM PURPOSES IS PROPER. IF AN OFFICER DETERMINES THAT IT IS NECESSARY THAT HIS ASSIGNED STEWARD ACCOMPANY HIM ON TOURS OF INSPECTION FOR THE PERFORMANCE OF TEMPORARY DUTY WHICH INVOLVES DUTIES AUTHORIZED FOR STEWARD GROUP RATES. THE REQUEST FOR DECISION WAS ASSIGNED PDTATAC CONTROL NO. 60-26.

B-143497, NOVEMBER 7, 1960, 40 COMP. GEN. 268

MILITARY PERSONNEL - STEWARDS ASSIGNED TO OFFICERS ASSIGNED PUBLIC QUARTERS - TRAVEL STATUS THE RESTRICTION AGAINST THE ASSIGNMENT OF STEWARDS TO OFFICERS WHO ARE NOT ASSIGNED PUBLIC QUARTERS IN THE REGULATIONS IMPLEMENTING 10 U.S.C. 7579 DOES NOT PREVENT THE UTILIZATION OF A STEWARD ASSIGNED TO DUTY IN PUBLIC QUARTERS OF AN OFFICER FOR THE PERFORMANCE OF OTHER AUTHORIZED DUTIES AND, IN THE ABSENCE OF ANYTHING IN THE LAW OR REGULATIONS WHICH WOULD PRECLUDE THE ORDERING OF A STEWARD TO TEMPORARY DUTY FOR THE PERFORMANCE OF OTHER AUTHORIZED DUTIES WHERE THE ASSIGNMENT DOES NOT CONSTITUTE AN ASSIGNMENT TO AN OFFICER NOT ASSIGNED PUBLIC QUARTERS, SUCH TEMPORARY DUTY FOR PER DIEM PURPOSES IS PROPER; THEREFORE, IF AN OFFICER DETERMINES THAT IT IS NECESSARY THAT HIS ASSIGNED STEWARD ACCOMPANY HIM ON TOURS OF INSPECTION FOR THE PERFORMANCE OF TEMPORARY DUTY WHICH INVOLVES DUTIES AUTHORIZED FOR STEWARD GROUP RATES, THE STEWARD MAY BE PAID PER DIEM WHILE IN A TRAVEL STATUS.

TO D. J. WIGGINS, DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY, NOVEMBER 7, 1960:

BY FOURTH ENDORSEMENT DATED JULY 12, 1960, THE PER DIEM, TRAVEL AND TRANSPORTATION ALLOWANCE COMMITTEE FORWARDED YOUR LETTER OF MAY 9, 1960, REQUESTING AN ADVANCE DECISION AS TO THE LEGALITY OF PAYING A PER DIEM ALLOWANCE TO RAMON I. BALAJADIA, SD1, 421 105 97, USN, UNDER THE CIRCUMSTANCES DESCRIBED BELOW. THE REQUEST FOR DECISION WAS ASSIGNED PDTATAC CONTROL NO. 60-26.

IT IS STATED IN THE ENDORSEMENTS ACCOMPANYING YOUR LETTER THAT BALAJADIA IS ASSIGNED TO PRIMARY DUTIES AS A STEWARD IN THE PUBLIC QUARTERS OF THE CHIEF OF NAVAL AIR TRAINING, VICE ADMIRAL ROBERT GOLDTHWAITE. BY ORDERS OF THE CHIEF OF NAVAL AIR TRAINING, T 944-60, DATED APRIL 29, 1960, THE ENLISTED MAN WAS PLACED ON TEMPORARY ADDITIONAL DUTY FOR AN ESTIMATED THREE DAYS TO VISIT WASHINGTON, D.C., AND SUCH ORDERS STATED THE REASON FOR THE TRAVEL TO BE " NAVAL MATTERS.' YOU ASK WHETHER MR. BALAJADIA IS ENTITLED TO PER DIEM IN THE AMOUNT OF $10.50 IN HIS STEWARD CAPACITY WHILE TRAVELING WITH ADMIRAL GOLDTHWAITE FROM MAY 1 TO 3, 1960, UNDER THE ABOVE- CITED ORDERS.

IN EXPLANATION OF THE ENLISTED MAN'S TEMPORARY DUTY ASSIGNMENT, THE CHIEF OF NAVAL PERSONNEL SAYS IN A THIRD ENDORSEMENT OF JUNE 20, 1960, TO YOUR LETTER, THAT ADMIRAL GOLDTHWAITE VISITS NUMEROUS STATIONS AND UNITS UNITS OF HIS WIDESPREAD COMMAND AT FREQUENT INTERVALS, FOR INSPECTIONS AND OTHER PURPOSES, AND THAT THE ADMIRAL'S STEWARD IS ASSIGNED TEMPORARY ADDITIONAL DUTIES AS A FLIGHT ORDERLY AND PERFORMS DUTIES EN ROUTE FOR THE ADMIRAL AND OTHER PASSENGERS. ALSO, AT POINTS OF DELAY EN ROUTE, THE ACCOMPANYING STEWARD IS MADE AVAILABLE TO THE LOCAL BOQ MESS FOR TEMPORARY DUTIES. IS SUBMITTED THAT THE UTILIZATION OF THE STEWARD IN THE MANNER DESCRIBED SERVES A DUAL PURPOSE OF PROVIDING SERVICE EN ROUTE FOR THE CHIEF OF NAVAL AIR TRAINING AND HIS PARTY AND ASSISTANCE TO THE STATION BEING INSPECTED OR VISITED. BASED ON THE ABOVE, THE ENDORSING COMMANDS RECOMMEND APPROVAL OF THE INSTANT CLAIM FOR PER DIEM AND REQUEST THAT NOTICES OF EXCEPTION WHICH HAVE BEEN ISSUED IN CASES SIMILAR TO THIS BE REMOVED.

PARAGRAPH C-5209 OF THE BUREAU OF NAVAL PERSONNEL MANUAL QUOTES AND IMPLEMENTS THE ACT OF AUGUST 2, 1946, 60 STAT. 855, NOW CODIFIED IN 10 U.S.C. 7579 (A), WITH REGARD TO ASSIGNMENTS OF STEWARD IN THE PUBLIC QUARTERS OF NAVY OFFICERS, IN THE FOLLOWING LANGUAGE:

C-5209. EMPLOYMENT OF STEWARD GROUP RATES

(1) AS PROVIDED BY TITLE 10, U.S. CODE, SECTION 7579 (A/-/B),"A) UNDER SUCH REGULATIONS AS THE SECRETARY OF THE NAVY PRESCRIBES, ENLISTED MEMBERS OF THE NAVAL SERVICE AND ENLISTED MEMBERS OF THE COAST GUARD WHEN IT IS OPERATING AS A SERVICE IN THE NAVY MAY BE ASSIGNED TO DUTY IN A SERVICE CAPACITY IN OFFICERS' MESSES AND PUBLIC QUARTERS WHERE THE SECRETARY FINDS THAT HIS USE OF THE MEMBERS IS DESIRABLE FOR MILITARY REASONS. * * *"

(2) STEWARD GROUP RATES MAY BE ASSIGNED TO DUTY ONLY IN:

(E) INDIVIDUAL PUBLIC QUARTERS OF AN OFFICER ON SHORE ONLY WHEN SPECIFICALLY AUTHORIZED BY THE SECRETARY OF THE NAVY. THIS AUTHORIZATION IS INDICATED BY A NOTATION ON THE ENLISTED ALLOWANCE OF THE APPROPRIATE ACTIVITY ISSUED BY THE CHIEF OF NAVAL PERSONNEL.

DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE DIRECTIVE NO. 1315.9 DATED FEBRUARY 2, 1960, DEALING WITH THE UTILIZATION OF ENLISTED PERSONNEL ON PERSONAL STAFFS OF OFFICERS, AND MAKING DIRECT REFERENCE TO 10 U.S.C. 7579, DECLARED AS POLICY THAT:

A. ENLISTED PERSONNEL ON THE PERSONAL STAFF OF AN OFFICER ARE AUTHORIZED FOR THE PURPOSE OF RELIEVING THE OFFICER OF THOSE MINOR TASKS AND DETAILS WHICH, IF PERFORMED BY THE OFFICER HIMSELF, WOULD BE AT THE EXPENSE OF HIS PRIMARY MILITARY AND OFFICIAL DUTIES. THE DUTIES OF THESE ENLISTED PERSONNEL SHALL BE CONCERNED WITH TASKS RELATING TO THE MILITARY AND OFFICIAL RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE OFFICER. THE PROPRIETY OF SUCH DUTIES IS GOVERNED BY THE PURPOSE WHICH THEY SERVE RATHER THAN THE NATURE OF THE DUTIES. SUCH DUTIES MUST ALSO FURTHER THE ACCOMPLISHMENT OF A NECESSARY MILITARY PURPOSE.

THE PROVISIONS OF SECNAV INSTRUCTION 1306.2 DATED JUNE 15, 1960, IMPLEMENTS THE ABOVE-QUOTED DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE DIRECTIVE AND PROVIDES IN PARAGRAPH 5, IN PERTINENT PART, AS FOLLOWS:

A. ENLISTED PERSONNEL ON THE PERSONAL STAFFS OF GENERAL AND FLAG OFFICERS, AND CERTAIN OTHER SENIOR OFFICERS WHO ARE IN COMMAND POSITIONS, MAY BE UTILIZED FOR:

(1) PROVIDING ESSENTIAL SERVICES TO SUCH OFFICERS IN THE FIELD AND ABOARD SHIP. THE PURPOSE OF SUCH SERVICES IS TO ASSIST THE SENIOR OFFICER BY RELIEVING HIM OF A MULTITUDE OF DETAILS OF AN ADMINISTRATIVE AND PERSONAL NATURE ASSOCIATED WITH HIS POSITION OR OFFICE, IN ORDER THAT HE MAY DEVOTE THE MAXIMUM OF TIME AND EFFORT TO MORE IMPORTANT MATTERS RELATING TO MILITARY PLANNING, POLICY, OPERATIONS, TRAINING, EXERCISES OR MANEUVERS.

PARAGRAPH 6C (4) OF THE SAME INSTRUCTION FURTHER PROVIDES THAT:

(4) SERVICES OF STEWARDS OTHER THAN THOSE OUTLINED IN (1) THROUGH (3) ABOVE MAY BE CONSISTENT WITH THE SECRETARY OF DEFENSE'S POLICIES AND THIS INSTRUCTION WHEN VIEWED FROM THE STANDPOINT OF THE PURPOSE SERVED; HOWEVER, THE OFFICER CONCERNED MUST MAKE A DETERMINATION IN EACH INSTANCE.

THE QUOTED STATUTORY AND REGULATOR LANGUAGE SPECIFICALLY PERMITS ASSIGNMENTS OF STEWARDS IN A SERVICE CAPACITY IN OFFICERS' MESSES AND THE INDIVIDUAL PUBLIC QUARTERS OF OFFICERS. IT APPEARS THAT AN AUTHORIZED ASSIGNMENT OF A STEWARD TO THE PUBLIC QUARTERS OF AN OFFICER IS MADE PRIMARILY BECAUSE OF THE POSITION THAT THE OFFICER HOLDS AND, WHILE AN OFFICER NOT ASSIGNED PUBLIC QUARTERS MAY NOT BE ASSIGNED A STEWARD, THE RESTRICTION GOES NO FURTHER THAN THAT. IN VIEW OF THE REPRESENTATIONS MADE BY THE CHIEF OF NAVAL PERSONNEL IN THE MENTIONED THIRD ENDORSEMENT AND THE TESTIMONY CONCERNING THE UTILIZATION OF STEWARDS SET FORTH IN HEARINGS BEFORE THE SPECIAL SUBCOMMITTEE ON UTILIZATION OF MILITARY MANPOWER OF THE COMMITTEE ON ARMED FORCES, HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, EIGHTY-SIXTH CONGRESS ( NO. 55), PAGES 5343 5346, IT SEEMS APPARENT THAT SUCH RESTRICTION WAS NOT INTENDED TO PREVENT THE UTILIZATION OF STEWARDS ASSIGNED TO DUTY IN THE PUBLIC QUARTERS OF AN OFFICER FOR THE PERFORMANCE OF OTHER AUTHORIZED DUTIES; AND, WE FIND NOTHING IN THE LAW AND REGULATIONS WHICH WOULD PRECLUDE THE ASSIGNMENT OF A STEWARD TO A PERIOD OF TEMPORARY DUTY FOR THE PERFORMANCE OF SUCH DUTIES WHERE THE TEMPORARY DUTY ASSIGNMENT DOES NOT, IN FACT, CONSTITUTE HIS ASSIGNMENT TO AN OFFICER NOT ASSIGNED PUBLIC QUARTERS. HENCE, IF AN OFFICER DETERMINES THAT IT IS NECESSARY THAT HIS ASSIGNED STEWARD ACCOMPANY HIM ON A TOUR OF TEMPORARY DUTY FOR THE PERFORMANCE OF TEMPORARY DUTY AND SUCH TEMPORARY DUTY INVOLVES THE PERFORMANCE OF DUTIES AUTHORIZED FOR STEWARD GROUP RATES, WE SEE NO REASON WHY THE STEWARD SHOULD NOT BE PAID PER DIEM WHILE HE IS IN A TRAVEL STATUS. THE TEMPORARY DUTY INVOLVED IN THIS CASE INVOLVED ONLY THOSE DUTIES AUTHORIZED FOR STEWARD GROUP RATES AND NO BASIS IS FOUND FOR CONCLUDING THAT IT IS TO BE VIEWED AS THE ASSIGNMENT OF A STEWARD TO AN OFFICER WHO IS NOT ASSIGNED PUBLIC QUARTERS.

WE ARE RETURNING THE VOUCHER AND SUPPORTING PAPERS TO YOU AND PAYMENT ON THE VOUCHER IS AUTHORIZED, IF OTHERWISE CORRECT. AUDIT ACTION IN SIMILAR CASES WILL BE IN ACCORD WITH THE VIEWS EXPRESSED ABOVE.