B-145458, MAY 16, 1961

B-145458: May 16, 1961

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THAT AMOUNT ALSO WAS ADMINISTRATIVELY DISALLOWED BY YOUR DEPARTMENT AS EXCESS MILEAGE OVER THE USUALLY TRAVELED ROUTE. THE RECORD SHOWS YOU WERE AUTHORIZED BY TRAVEL ORDER DATED JUNE 1. THE ROUTES USED ON THE GOING AND RETURN TRIPS WERE BOTH IN EXCESS OF MILEAGE BY THE MOST DIRECT USUALLY TRAVELED ROUTE BETWEEN THESE LOCATIONS AS SHOWN BY THE RAND MCNALLY STANDARD HIGHWAY GUIDE. THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS SECTION 3.5B (1) READS IN PART AS FOLLOWS: "WHEN TRANSPORTATION IS AUTHORIZED OR APPROVED BY PRIVATELY OWNED MOTORCYCLES OR AUTOMOBILES. WE HAVE CONSISTENTLY RULED WHERE DEVIATIONS OVER THE DISTANCES SHOWN IN MILEAGE TABLES OR STANDARD HIGHWAY GUIDES ARE TRIVIAL OR NOT UNREASONABLY IN EXCESS THEREOF.

B-145458, MAY 16, 1961

TO MR. DAVID KLEIN:

YOUR RECLAIM VOUCHER FOR $53 RELATES TO OUR OFFICE SETTLEMENT DATED FEBRUARY 24, 1961, WHICH DISALLOWED YOUR CLAIM IN THE AMOUNT OF $129.60 FOR ADDITIONAL MILEAGE AND PER DIEM FOR TRAVEL DURING THE PERIOD OCTOBER 4, 1960, TO NOVEMBER 5, 1960, WHILE ON HOME LEAVE TRAVEL. THAT AMOUNT ALSO WAS ADMINISTRATIVELY DISALLOWED BY YOUR DEPARTMENT AS EXCESS MILEAGE OVER THE USUALLY TRAVELED ROUTE. YOUR RECLAIM VOUCHER FOR $53 COVERS A REQUEST FOR PAYMENT OF ADDITIONAL MILEAGE BASED UPON A 10 PERCENT DEVIATION FROM THE MOST DIRECT USUALLY TRAVELED ROUTES BETWEEN WASHINGTON, D.C., AND LYNDON, KANSAS, AND RETURN, TOGETHER WITH AN ADDITIONAL ALLOWANCE FOR PER DIEM OF ONE AND ONE-HALF DAYS APPLICABLE TO SUCH EXCESS MILEAGE. YOU SAY THIS INCREASE RESULTS FROM A NECESSITY TO DEVIATE FROM THE DIRECT ROUTE TO OBTAIN FOOD AND LODGINGS EN ROUTE.

THE RECORD SHOWS YOU WERE AUTHORIZED BY TRAVEL ORDER DATED JUNE 1, 1960, TO TRAVEL FROM BONN, GERMANY, TO WASHINGTON, D.C., FOR TEMPORARY DUTY, THENCE TO LYNDON, KANSAS, FOR HOME LEAVE. YOU TRAVELED FROM WASHINGTON TO LYNDON VIA PITTSBURGH, PENNSYLVANIA; BRYAN, OHIO; LINCOLN, ILLINOIS; AND EXCELSIOR SPRINGS, MISSOURI, RETURNING TO WASHINGTON VIA HANNIBAL, MISSOURI; GARY, INDIANA; AKRON, OHIO, AND HAGERSTOWN, MARYLAND. THE ROUTES USED ON THE GOING AND RETURN TRIPS WERE BOTH IN EXCESS OF MILEAGE BY THE MOST DIRECT USUALLY TRAVELED ROUTE BETWEEN THESE LOCATIONS AS SHOWN BY THE RAND MCNALLY STANDARD HIGHWAY GUIDE. THE MILEAGE CLAIMED FOR THE INDIRECT ROUTE USED BETWEEN WASHINGTON AND LYNDON EXCEEDS THE MILEAGE OF THE DIRECT ROUTE BY 281 MILES AND THE RETURN TRIP MILEAGE EXCEEDS THE DIRECT ROUTE MILEAGE BY 265 MILES. THIS RESULTS IN AN INCREASE OF MORE THAN 20 PERCENT INCREASE OF THE MILEAGE BY THE MOST DIRECT AND USUALLY TRAVELED ROUTE.

THE FOREIGN SERVICE MANUAL, 180 FSTR 4.33C RELATING TO DETERMINATION OF ALLOWABLE TRAVEL TIME, READS IN PART AS FOLLOWS:

"EXCLUDE FROM HIS TRAVEL CLAIM FOR PER DIEM * * * THOSE PERIODS OF TRAVEL ARISING FROM INTERRUPTIONS, DELAYS AND DEVIATIONS FOR HIS PERSONAL CONVENIENCE WHICH INCREASE TRAVEL TIME BEYOND THAT REASONABLY REQUIRED TO COMPLETE THE AUTHORIZED TRAVEL.'

ALSO, THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS SECTION 3.5B (1) READS IN PART AS FOLLOWS:

"WHEN TRANSPORTATION IS AUTHORIZED OR APPROVED BY PRIVATELY OWNED MOTORCYCLES OR AUTOMOBILES, DISTANCES BETWEEN POINTS TRAVELED SHALL BE AS SHOWN IN STANDARD HIGHWAY MILEAGE GUIDES OR BY SPEEDOMETER READINGS. ANY SUBSTANTIAL DEVIATIONS FROM DISTANCES SHOWN IN THE STANDARD HIGHWAY MILEAGE GUIDES SHALL BE EXPLAINED.'

WE HAVE CONSISTENTLY RULED WHERE DEVIATIONS OVER THE DISTANCES SHOWN IN MILEAGE TABLES OR STANDARD HIGHWAY GUIDES ARE TRIVIAL OR NOT UNREASONABLY IN EXCESS THEREOF, THEY MAY BE ALLOWED WHEN A DIRECT ROUTE OR USUALLY TRAVELED ROUTE IS USED. ADDITIONAL MILEAGE ALSO MAY BE ALLOWED WHEN DEVIATIONS FROM THE DIRECT ROUTE ARE REQUIRED BECAUSE OF WEATHER OR ROAD CONDITIONS WHERE SATISFACTORY EXPLANATION OF THE UNUSUAL CONDITIONS IS MADE BY THE TRAVELER. HOWEVER, WE KNOW OF NO AUTHORITY WHEREBY A FLAT PERCENTAGE INCREASE IN AUTHORIZED MILEAGE MAY BE ALLOWED. FURTHERMORE, THE PERCENTAGE INCREASE CLAIMED IS BASED UPON A PRESUMPTION THAT SUCH INCREASED MILEAGE WOULD HAVE BEEN NECESSARY TO OBTAIN FOOD AND LODGING OVER A ROUTE NOT USED FOR THIS ..END :