B-147319, JAN. 4, 1962

B-147319: Jan 4, 1962

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WAS MAY 29. YOU WERE. YOU WERE ON MILITARY LEAVE FOR TRAINING WITH THE ARMY IN FRANKFURT. ARE INTERPRETED AS PRECLUDING THE TRANSPORTATION OF GOVERNMENT EXPENSE OF AN AUTOMOBILE ACQUIRED EN ROUTE FROM AN EMPLOYEE'S LAST PERMANENT DUTY STATION TO THE UNITED STATES FOR SEPARATION. REIMBURSEMENT OF THE COST OF TRANSPORTING YOUR AUTOMOBILE WAS DISALLOWED. THE FIRST IS: "1. WHY WAS I INSTRUCTED BY THE EMBASSY IN VIENNA TO DELIVER THE CAR TO THE U.S. WHICH WOULD HAVE COST $75.00 ON A NON-AMERICAN BOTTOM.'. THE FILE BEFORE US DOES NOT SHOW WHY YOU WERE TOLD BY THE EMBASSY IN VIENNA TO DELIVER THE AUTOMOBILE TO THE AMERICAN CONSULATE IN BREMEN. THE EMBASSY'S INSTRUCTION WAS BASED UPON THE THOUGHT THAT YOU POSSESSED A CAR DURING YOUR TOUR OF DUTY.

B-147319, JAN. 4, 1962

TO MR. GERHARD E. BORST:

ON NOVEMBER 27, 1961, YOU REQUESTED REVIEW OF OUR OFFICE SETTLEMENT OF NOVEMBER 20, 1961, WHICH DISALLOWED YOUR CLAIM FOR REIMBURSEMENT OF THE EXPENSE OF TRANSPORTING YOUR PRIVATELY OWNED AUTOMOBILE FROM BREMERHAVEN, GERMANY TO NEW YORK, NEW YORK, INCIDENT TO YOUR TRAVEL FROM VIENNA, AUSTRIA, TO WASHINGTON GROVE, MARYLAND, FOR SEPARATION FROM SERVICE WITH THE DEPARTMENT OF STATE.

THE DEPARTMENT OF STATE HAS DETERMINED THAT YOUR LAST DAY OF DUTY IN VIENNA, YOUR LAST PERMANENT DUTY STATION PRIOR TO YOUR SEPARATION, WAS MAY 29, 1960. BETWEEN THAT DATE AND THE DATE OF YOUR ACTUAL SEPARATION, JULY 1, 1960, YOU WERE, IN EFFECT, EN ROUTE TO WASHINGTON, D.C. FOR SEPARATION, ALTHOUGH FOR THE PERIOD MAY 29, THROUGH JUNE 12, YOU WERE ON MILITARY LEAVE FOR TRAINING WITH THE ARMY IN FRANKFURT, GERMANY. IT APPEARS FROM THE RECORD BEFORE US, THAT ON JUNE 10, DURING YOUR TOUR OF MILITARY DUTY YOU BECAME THE OWNER OF VOLKSWAGEN SEDAN SERIAL NUMBER 3118 504. SINCE THE FOREIGN SERVICE TRAVEL REGULATIONS--- 180 FSTR 5.21 AND 5.22--- AND I FOREIGN SERVICE MANUAL III, 172.3J, ARE INTERPRETED AS PRECLUDING THE TRANSPORTATION OF GOVERNMENT EXPENSE OF AN AUTOMOBILE ACQUIRED EN ROUTE FROM AN EMPLOYEE'S LAST PERMANENT DUTY STATION TO THE UNITED STATES FOR SEPARATION, REIMBURSEMENT OF THE COST OF TRANSPORTING YOUR AUTOMOBILE WAS DISALLOWED.

IN YOUR REQUEST FOR REVIEW YOU ASK AN EXPLANATION UPON TWO POINTS. THE FIRST IS:

"1. IF REGULATIONS OF THE DEPARTMENT OF STATE PRECLUDE THE TRANSPORTATION AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE OF AUTOMOBILES ACQUIRED AFTER THE OFFICER'S LAST DAY OF ACTIVE DUTY AT THE POST, WHY WAS I INSTRUCTED BY THE EMBASSY IN VIENNA TO DELIVER THE CAR TO THE U.S. CONSUL IN BREMEN FOR SHIPMENT ON AN AMERICAN BOTTOM, WHICH COST $164.00, INSTEAD OF HAVING BEEN TOLD THAT IN VIEW OF THE ABOVE REGULATION, I HAD TO SHIP IT AT MY OWN EXPENSE, WHICH WOULD HAVE COST $75.00 ON A NON-AMERICAN BOTTOM.'

THE FILE BEFORE US DOES NOT SHOW WHY YOU WERE TOLD BY THE EMBASSY IN VIENNA TO DELIVER THE AUTOMOBILE TO THE AMERICAN CONSULATE IN BREMEN, GERMANY, FOR SHIPMENT AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE. POSSIBLY, THE EMBASSY'S INSTRUCTION WAS BASED UPON THE THOUGHT THAT YOU POSSESSED A CAR DURING YOUR TOUR OF DUTY. CERTAINLY, IF THE PERSON WHO GAVE YOU SUCH INFORMATION KNEW ALL THE FACTS INVOLVED SUCH INFORMATION WAS ERRONEOUS. WE NOTE, HOWEVER, THAT IN YOUR LETTER OF MAY 27, 1960, TO THE ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICER, AMERICAN CONSULATE, BREMEN, GERMANY, A COPY WHICH IS IN THE FILE, YOU DO NOT INDICATE THAT YOU WERE TO BECOME OWNER OF THE AUTOMOBILE IN QUESTION AFTER YOUR DEPARTURE FROM VIENNA. IN ANY CASE I FOREIGN SERVICE MANUAL III, 131.3 PROVIDES:

"THE ULTIMATE RESPONSIBILITY FOR THE CORRECT PERFORMANCE OF OFFICIAL TRAVEL BY AN EMPLOYEE AND HIS DEPENDENTS AND FOR THE PAYMENT OF ANY CHARGES INCURRED THROUGH FAILURE TO OBSERVE THE GOVERNING REGULATIONS RESTS WITH THE EMPLOYEE, REGARDLESS OF WHO MAY HAVE ASSISTED HIM IN HIS TRAVEL ARRANGEMENTS.'

THUS, EVEN IF YOU WERE GIVEN INCORRECT INFORMATION BY A GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEE THE COST OF UNAUTHORIZED TRAVEL AND TRANSPORTATION SECURED IN RELIANCE THEREON MUST BE BORNE BY YOU.

THE SECOND POINT UPON WHICH YOU REQUEST AN EXPLANATION IS AS FOLLOWS:

"2. AS I WAS ON LOAN TO ICEM (INTERGOVERNMENTAL COMMITTEE FOR EUROPEAN MIGRATION) DURING MY THREE YEARS IN VIENNA AND ICEM RE IMBURSED STATE MY SALARY AND ALL OTHER EXPENSES, SHOULD NOT STATE ENDEAVOR TO GET THIS $164.00 RE-IMBURSED FROM ICEM.$ AFTER ALL, I FOLLOWED INSTRUCTIONS.'

THE FACT THAT THE UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT IS REIMBURSED BY THE INTERGOVERNMENTAL COMMITTEE FOR EUROPEAN MIGRATION FOR YOUR COMPENSATION AND ALLOWANCES LENDS NO SUPPORT FOR YOUR CLAIM. SINCE YOU WERE DETAILED TO THAT ORGANIZATION WE KNOW OF NO AUTHORITY TO REIMBURSE YOU AND TO CHARGE AGAINST THE COMMITTEE AN EXPENSE FOR WHICH REIMBURSEMENT IS NOT AUTHORIZED BY LAW AND REGULATIONS.

FOR THE REASONS STATED OUR SETTLEMENT OF NOVEMBER 20, MUST BE AND HEREBY IS SUSTAINED.