B-145821, DEC. 6, 1961

B-145821: Dec 6, 1961

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TO GREAT NORTHERN RAILWAY COMPANY: FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF MAY 2. YOUR CLAIM IS FOR A SINGLE COACH FARE FROM SEATTLE. IS BASED ON THE ASSUMPTION THAT TWO PASSENGERS TRAVELED BETWEEN THESE POINTS ON YOUR LINE UNDER ONE TICKET ISSUED IN EXCHANGE FOR UNITED STATES OF AMERICA TRANSPORTATION REQUEST NO. 224. ON ITS FACE THE TRANSPORTATION REQUEST STATES THAT IT WAS ISSUED FOR THE USE OF "A/1C RONALD W BAILEY FOR A/B GUS J SKINNER JR" AND NO OTHERS. " THERE IS TYPED. TO SUPPORT YOUR CLAIM YOU HAVE SUBMITTED A PHOTOSTAT OF THE DUPLICATE COPY OF THE TRANSPORTATION REQUEST. THE STATEMENT IS SIGNED "COUGHLIN. " WHO YOU INDICATE WAS THE CONDUCTOR ON THE TRAIN AT THE TIME OF THE SUBJECT TRANSPORTATION.

B-145821, DEC. 6, 1961

TO GREAT NORTHERN RAILWAY COMPANY:

FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF MAY 2, 1961, FILE S, WHEREIN YOU REQUESTED A REVIEW OF OUR SETTLEMENT OF APRIL 25, 1961, TK 711300, WHICH DISALLOWED YOUR CLAIM FOR $5.16 UNDER BILL NO. P 3750-A. YOUR CLAIM IS FOR A SINGLE COACH FARE FROM SEATTLE, WASHINGTON, TO EPHRATA, WASHINGTON, AND IS BASED ON THE ASSUMPTION THAT TWO PASSENGERS TRAVELED BETWEEN THESE POINTS ON YOUR LINE UNDER ONE TICKET ISSUED IN EXCHANGE FOR UNITED STATES OF AMERICA TRANSPORTATION REQUEST NO. 224,837, IN JULY 1960.

ON ITS FACE THE TRANSPORTATION REQUEST STATES THAT IT WAS ISSUED FOR THE USE OF "A/1C RONALD W BAILEY FOR A/B GUS J SKINNER JR" AND NO OTHERS. AIRMAN BAILEY SIGNED THE TRANSPORTATION REQUEST IN THE SPACE RESERVED FOR THE TRAVELER'S SIGNATURE, AND IMMEDIATELY BELOW IN THE SPACE DENOTED ,TITLE," THERE IS TYPED,"A/B GUS J SKINNER JR AF 14720257 PRIS" AND "A 1C RONALD W BAILEY AF 19609805 ESCORT.' YOU ORIGINALLY BILLED FOR A SINGLE FARE IN THE AMOUNT OF $5.16. OUR SETTLEMENT OF APRIL 25, 1961, DISALLOWED THIS CLAIM SINCE IT APPEARED THAT THE TRANSPORTATION REQUEST IN ISSUE AUTHORIZED TRAVEL FOR ONE PERSON ONLY.

TO SUPPORT YOUR CLAIM YOU HAVE SUBMITTED A PHOTOSTAT OF THE DUPLICATE COPY OF THE TRANSPORTATION REQUEST, FORM 1169B, WHICH SHOWS, ON ITS REVERSE SIDE, A HANDWRITTEN NOTATION READING,"ONLY ONE TICKET FURNISHED FOR THIS MOVE OF TWO PEOPLE SEATTLE TO EPHRATA.' THE STATEMENT IS SIGNED "COUGHLIN," WHO YOU INDICATE WAS THE CONDUCTOR ON THE TRAIN AT THE TIME OF THE SUBJECT TRANSPORTATION.

UPON RECEIPT OF YOUR LETTER OF MAY 2, 1961, AND THE PHOTOSTAT OF THE DUPLICATE COPY OF THE TRANSPORTATION REQUEST, WE REQUESTED A REPORT FROM THE TRANSPORTATION OFFICER AT LARSON AIR FORCE BASE, EPHRATA, ON THE TRANSPORTATION IN QUESTION. IN HIS REPORT WE WERE INFORMED THAT TRANSPORTATION REQUEST NO. 224,837 WAS ISSUED FOR THE USE OF AIRMAN BASIC GUS J. SKINNER, JR., AND THAT AIRMAN FIRST CLASS RONALD W. BAILEY PURCHASED A COACH TICKET AT SEATTLE FROM HIS PERSONAL FUNDS. THE TRANSPORTATION OFFICER WHO REPORTED THAT NO ADDITIONAL TRANSPORTATION REQUEST WAS ISSUED FOR THIS TRAVEL, AND THAT THE TRANSPORTATION REQUEST WAS NOT EXCHANGED FOR A TICKET PRIOR TO BOARDING THE TRAIN; WE ASSUME, THEREFORE, THAT IT WAS SURRENDERED TO YOUR CONDUCTOR AFTER BOARDING IN EXCHANGE FOR TICKET L-11, NO. 52459.

THE FACTS AS REPORTED IN YOUR LETTER OF MAY 2, 1961, AND BY THE REPORT OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICE ARE IN CONFLICT. IN SUCH SITUATION WE ARE OBLIGED TO ACCEPT AS CORRECT THE FACTS AS REPORTED BY THE ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICE UNTIL SUCH TIME AS THE CLAIMANT PRESENTS COMPELLING EVIDENCE TO THE CONTRARY. 36 COMP. GEN. 529, 530. APART FROM THE APPLICATION OF THIS RULE, HOWEVER, THE DETAILS OF THE TRANSPORTATION REQUEST ITSELF SUPPORT THE PAYMENT OF ONLY ONE FARE.

YOU STATE THAT THE FRONT SIDE OF THE TRANSPORTATION REQUEST IS FILLED OUT IN A MISLEADING MANNER, BUT WE FEEL THAT SUCH IS NOT THE CASE, AS THE TRANSPORTATION REQUEST SHOWS THAT IT WAS ISSUED FOR THE USE OF AIRMAN BAILEY "FOR" AIRMAN SKINNER RATHER THAN FOR THE USE OF AIRMAN BAILEY AND AIRMAN SKINNER. THIS SEEMS TO BE SUFFICIENT INDICATION THAT TRAVEL BY THE PRISONER ONLY WAS AUTHORIZED UNDER THE SUBJECT TRANSPORTATION REQUEST. AIRMAN SKINNER WAS A PRISONER AND AIRMAN BAILEY WAS HIS ESCORT. IN SUCH A SITUATION, AUTHORITY TO TRAVEL WOULD NOT BE MADE OUT IN THE NAME OF THE PRISONER, BUT RATHER IT WOULD BE ISSUED TO THE ESCORT ACTING IN HIS STEAD ON MATTERS ARISING DURING THE TRIP. THE FACT, THEN, THAT AIRMAN BAILEY'S NAME APPEARS ON THE DOCUMENT AND THE FACT THAT HE SIGNED IT AS TRAVELER DO NOT NECESSARILY INDICATE THAT TRAVEL BY HIM UNDER THE AUTHORITY OF THE REQUEST WAS CONTEMPLATED BY ITS ISSUANCE.

CONDITION 1 ON THE REVERSE SIDE OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA TRANSPORTATION REQUEST, FORM NO. 1169, PROVIDES AS FOLLOWS:

"THE UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT WILL NOT BE RESPONSIBLE FOR ANY CHARGES IN EXCESS OF THOSE APPLICABLE FOR TRANSPORTATION AND/OR ACCOMMODATIONS OF THE TYPE, CLASS OR CHARACTER SPECIFIED IN THIS REQUEST. ACCORDINGLY, IF TRANSPORTATION AND/OR ACCOMMODATIONS COSTING MORE THAN THOSE AUTHORIZED ON THE FACE OF THIS REQUEST ARE FURNISHED, THE ADDITIONAL COST MUST BE PAID BY THE TRAVELER AT THE TIME TRANSPORTATION AND/OR ACCOMMODATIONS ARE OBTAINED AND NOT BILLED AGAINST THE GOVERNMENT. * * *"

SINCE WE HAVE CONCLUDED THAT TRANSPORTATION REQUEST NO. 224,837 SUPPORTS PAYMENT FOR THE TRAVEL OF AIRMAN SKINNER ONLY, OUR SETTLEMENT OF APRIL 25, 1961, WHICH DISALLOWED YOUR CLAIM FOR AN ADDITIONAL FARE OF $5.16, IS SUSTAINED.