B-148811, OCT. 19, 1962

B-148811: Oct 19, 1962

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TO NUFFIELD EXPORTS LIMITED: FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF APRIL 18. YOU WERE ADVISED BY MR. AS FOLLOWS: "THE CAR IS TO BE FORWARDED. WAS INADVERTENTLY SHIPPED ABOARD THE S.S. RECORDS AVAILABLE HERE DISCLOSE THAT SERVICE WAS AVAILABLE BY THE S.S. PAYMENT OF YOUR BILL FOR THE TRANSPORTATION SERVICE WAS NOT MADE BY THE U.S. STATE DEPARTMENT BUT THE BILL WAS FORWARDED HERE FOR DIRECT SETTLEMENT BY OUR TRANSPORTATION DIVISION. SECTION 901 READS AS FOLLOWS: "ANY OFFICER OR EMPLOYEE OF THE UNITED STATES TRAVELING ON OFFICIAL BUSINESS OVERSEAS OR TO OR FROM ANY OF THE POSSESSIONS OF THE UNITED STATES SHALL TRAVEL AND TRANSPORT HIS PERSONAL EFFECTS ON SHIPS REGISTERED UNDER THE LAWS OF THE UNITED STATES WHERE SUCH SHIPS ARE AVAILABLE UNLESS THE NECESSITY OF HIS MISSION REQUIRES THE USE OF A SHIP UNDER A FOREIGN FLAG:PROVIDED.

B-148811, OCT. 19, 1962

TO NUFFIELD EXPORTS LIMITED:

FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF APRIL 18, 1962, YOUR REFERENCE RJWP/HW, REQUESTING A REVIEW OF THE SETTLEMENT WHICH DISALLOWED YOUR CLAIM FOR FREIGHT CHARGES INCURRED INCIDENT TO THE SHIPMENT OF AN AUTOMOBILE ON BEHALF OF MR. ALLEN C. DAVIS, AN EMPLOYEE OF THE UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT, WHO PURCHASED IT FROM YOUR COMPANY.

BY LETTER OF JUNE 2, 1960, YOU WERE ADVISED BY MR. JACK L. VROOMAN, SECOND SECRETARY OF THE AMERICAN EMBASSY AT LONDON, SO FAR AS PERTINENT, AS FOLLOWS:

"THE CAR IS TO BE FORWARDED, UNBOXED, ON A VESSEL OF UNITED STATES REGISTRY * * *.' HOWEVER, THE AUTOMOBILE ON OR ABOUT JUNE 23, 1960, WAS INADVERTENTLY SHIPPED ABOARD THE S.S. GLOUCESTER CITY, NOT LISTED AS AN AMERICAN FLAG VESSEL, FROM AVONMOUTH, ENGLAND, TO BALTIMORE, MARYLAND, U.S.A. RECORDS AVAILABLE HERE DISCLOSE THAT SERVICE WAS AVAILABLE BY THE S.S. AMERICAN BUILDER, A VESSEL OF UNITED STATES REGISTRY, DEPARTING FROM LONDON ON JULY 5, 1960, AND BOUND FOR BALTIMORE AND OTHER UNITED STATES PORTS. PAYMENT OF YOUR BILL FOR THE TRANSPORTATION SERVICE WAS NOT MADE BY THE U.S. STATE DEPARTMENT BUT THE BILL WAS FORWARDED HERE FOR DIRECT SETTLEMENT BY OUR TRANSPORTATION DIVISION, WHICH DISALLOWED THE CLAIM ON THE BASIS THAT SECTION 901 OF THE MERCHANT MARINE ACT, 1936, VOLUME 49, UNITED STATES STATUTES AT LARGE, PAGE 2015; TITLE 46, UNITED STATES CODE, SECTION 1241 (A); FORBIDS PAYMENT UNDER THOSE CIRCUMSTANCES.

SECTION 901 READS AS FOLLOWS:

"ANY OFFICER OR EMPLOYEE OF THE UNITED STATES TRAVELING ON OFFICIAL BUSINESS OVERSEAS OR TO OR FROM ANY OF THE POSSESSIONS OF THE UNITED STATES SHALL TRAVEL AND TRANSPORT HIS PERSONAL EFFECTS ON SHIPS REGISTERED UNDER THE LAWS OF THE UNITED STATES WHERE SUCH SHIPS ARE AVAILABLE UNLESS THE NECESSITY OF HIS MISSION REQUIRES THE USE OF A SHIP UNDER A FOREIGN FLAG:PROVIDED, THAT THE COMPTROLLER GENERAL OF THE UNITED STATES SHALL NOT CREDIT ANY ALLOWANCE FOR TRAVEL OR SHIPPING EXPENSES INCURRED ON A FOREIGN SHIP IN THE ABSENCE OF SATISFACTORY PROOF OF THE NECESSITY REFOR.'

AS INDICATED ABOVE, WE ARE FORBIDDEN BY THE LAW TO CREDIT ANY ALLOWANCE FOR TRAVEL OR SHIPPING EXPENSES, UNLESS IT CAN BE SHOWN THAT AMERICAN FLAG SHIPS WERE NOT AVAILABLE OR THAT THERE WAS SOME OFFICIAL NECESSITY FOR THE USE OF VESSELS OF OTHER COUNTRIES. WE REGRET THE INCONVENIENCE RESULTING FROM THE FAILURE OF YOUR EMPLOYEES TO FOLLOW THE INSTRUCTIONS GIVEN BY THE AMERICAN EMBASSY; BUT, IT IS CLEAR THAT WE MUST OBSERVE THE RESTRICTION IMPOSED BY THE LAW AND WE CANNOT AUTHORIZE THE OBLIGATION OF PUBLIC FUNDS TO REIMBURSE YOU.

IN THE CIRCUMSTANCES, THE SETTLEMENT DISALLOWING YOUR CLAIM WAS CORRECT, AND IT IS HEREBY SUSTAINED.