B-150739, APR. 24, 1963

B-150739: Apr 24, 1963

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460 71 65: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF JANUARY 21. IN SUPPORT OF YOUR CONTENTION THAT THE ACTUAL WEIGHT OF THE HOUSEHOLD GOODS SHIPPED WAS LESS THAN THE COMPUTED WEIGHT FOR WHICH YOU WERE CHARGED. YOU PREVIOUSLY STATED THAT YOU WERE ADVISED IN KODIAK THAT THE GOODS WERE UNDER YOUR AUTHORIZED WEIGHT ALLOWANCE. ENCLOSED IS A COPY OF SMITH VAN AND STORAGE COMPANY WEIGHT CERTIFICATE NO. 4090. WHICH IS ON FILE IN THIS OFFICE. WHILE THE NUMERAL "9" IN THE GROSS WEIGHT FIGURE IS NOT FULLY POSITIONED TO BE IN COMPLETE ALIGNMENT WITH THE OTHER NUMERALS COMPRISING THE FIGURE. IT IS EVIDENT THAT THE GROSS WEIGHT INDICATED IS 30. YOU WILL NOTE THAT THE TARE WEIGHT IS CLEARLY SHOWN ON THE ENCLOSURE AS 25.

B-150739, APR. 24, 1963

TO HARRY ALLEN LEWIS, YN2, USN, 460 71 65:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF JANUARY 21, 1963, REQUESTING RECONSIDERATION OF SETTLEMENT DATED NOVEMBER 15, 1962, WHICH DISALLOWED YOUR CLAIM FOR REFUND OF COLLECTIONS MADE FROM YOUR PAY FOR EXCESS WEIGHT CHARGES ON 681 POUNDS INCURRED IN THE MOVEMENT OF YOUR HOUSEHOLD GOODS FROM KODIAK, ALASKA, TO SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA, INCIDENT TO PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION ORDERS DATED JULY 21, 1961, HEADQUARTERS, SEVENTEENTH NAVAL DISTRICT, KODIAK, ALASKA.

YOU STATE THAT ON WEIGHT CERTIFICATE NO. 4090, DATED SEPTEMBER 26, 1961, FURNISHED YOU BY THE SMITH VAN AND STORAGE COMPANY, INC., SEATTLE, WASHINGTON, FOR GOODS SHIPPED ON GOVERNMENT BILL OF LADING NO. A-2338929, THE GROSS AND TARE WEIGHT FIGURES APPEAR TO BE 30,780 POUNDS AND 25,980 POUNDS, RESPECTIVELY, INDICATING THAT THE CORRECT NET WEIGHT WOULD BE 4,800 POUNDS RATHER THAN 5,800 POUNDS SHOWN AS THE NET WEIGHT, THEREBY LEAVING 200 POUNDS OF YOUR 5,000 POUNDS AUTHORIZED NET WEIGHT ALLOWANCE REMAINING TO YOUR CREDIT. IN SUPPORT OF YOUR CONTENTION THAT THE ACTUAL WEIGHT OF THE HOUSEHOLD GOODS SHIPPED WAS LESS THAN THE COMPUTED WEIGHT FOR WHICH YOU WERE CHARGED, YOU PREVIOUSLY STATED THAT YOU WERE ADVISED IN KODIAK THAT THE GOODS WERE UNDER YOUR AUTHORIZED WEIGHT ALLOWANCE, AND YOU FURNISHED A STATEMENT BY AN INSPECTOR OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS FROM THE NAVAL SUPPLY CENTER AT SAN DIEGO WHEREIN HE ESTIMATED THE NET WEIGHT OF THE ITEMS SHIPPED ON BILL OF LADING NO. A-2338929 AS 5,155 POUNDS.

ENCLOSED IS A COPY OF SMITH VAN AND STORAGE COMPANY WEIGHT CERTIFICATE NO. 4090, WHICH IS ON FILE IN THIS OFFICE. WHILE THE NUMERAL "9" IN THE GROSS WEIGHT FIGURE IS NOT FULLY POSITIONED TO BE IN COMPLETE ALIGNMENT WITH THE OTHER NUMERALS COMPRISING THE FIGURE, IT IS EVIDENT THAT THE GROSS WEIGHT INDICATED IS 30,980 POUNDS RATHER THAN 30,780 POUNDS WHICH YOU STATE APPEARS TO BE THE FIGURE ON THE COPY OF THE CERTIFICATE FURNISHED YOU. ALSO, YOU WILL NOTE THAT THE TARE WEIGHT IS CLEARLY SHOWN ON THE ENCLOSURE AS 25,180 POUNDS WHICH, WHEN SUBTRACTED FROM THE GROSS WEIGHT, LEAVES A NET WEIGHT OF 5,800 POUNDS AS SHOWN THEREON. THE WEIGHT OF 5,800 POUNDS FOR THE GOODS SHIPPED ON BILL OF LADING A-2338929 LIKEWISE IS SHOWN IN THE CERTIFICATE OF THE SHIPPING OFFICER AT KODIAK ON YOUR APPLICATION FOR SHIPMENT OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS.

SECTION 406 OF TITLE 37, U.S.C. PROVIDES FOR THE TRANSPORTATION (INCLUDING PACKING AND CRATING) OF HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS OF MEMBERS OF THE UNIFORMED SERVICES TO AND FROM SUCH LOCATIONS AND WITHIN SUCH WEIGHT ALLOWANCES AS MAY BE PRESCRIBED BY THE SECRETARIES. BECAUSE OF THE OBVIOUS IMPRACTICABILITY INVOLVED IN WEIGHING EACH OF THE MANY SHIPMENTS OF SERVICE PERSONNEL BEFORE PACKING AT ORIGIN OR AFTER UNPACKING AT DESTINATION FOR THE PURPOSE OF COMPUTING EXCESS COST ON THE BASIS OF ACTUAL NET WEIGHTS INVOLVED, THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS SPECIFY CERTAIN METHODS OF PACKING AND SHIPMENT OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS WITH PROVISION FOR THE COMPUTATION OF EXCESS COST FOR EXCESS WEIGHT SHIPPED BY SUCH MEANS. PARAGRAPH 8001 OF THE REGULATIONS IN EFFECT AT THE TIME HERE INVOLVED PROVIDES IN CASES WHERE THE ACTUAL NET WEIGHT OF THE HOUSEHOLD GOODS IS NOT KNOWN FOR A 40 PERCENT INCREASE IN THE AUTHORIZED ALLOWANCE WHERE ANY PART OF THE MOVEMENT IS BY WATER, RAIL, OR MOTOR FREIGHT IN A CRATED CONDITION TO COVER THE WEIGHT OF PACKING MATERIALS, AND A FIVE PERCENT INCREASE WHEN THE MOVEMENT IS BE VAN OR FREIGHT FORWARDER IN AN UNPACKED AND UNCRATED CONDITION. THAT PARAGRAPH FURTHER PROVIDES THAT WHERE SHIPMENTS INVOLVE WEIGHTS EXCEEDING THE PRESCRIBED ALLOWANCE THE TRANSPORTATION CHARGES ON SUCH EXCESS WEIGHTS WILL BE BORNE BY THE OWNER. GENERALLY, THE REGULATION CONTEMPLATES THE SHIPMENT AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS, AS PACKED FOR SHIPMENT, AT NOT TO EXCEED AN OVER-ALL WEIGHT ALLOWANCE OF THE NET WEIGHT AUTHORIZED BY VIRTUE OF THE MILITARY RANK OR GRADE OF THE SHIPPER PLUS AUTHORIZED WEIGHT ALLOWANCE INCREASE TO COVER PACKING MATERIALS, AND SUCH OVER-ALL WEIGHT REPRESENTS THE MAXIMUM WEIGHT THAT MAY BE SHIPPED AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE IRRESPECTIVE OF WHETHER OR NOT THE ACTUAL NET WEIGHT OF THE GOODS SHIPPED EXCEEDS THE NET WEIGHT ALLOWANCES SET FORTH IN THE REGULATIONS.

PARAGRAPH 58117 OF THE BUREAU OF SUPPLIES AND ACCOUNTS MANUAL REQUIRES SHIPMENTS TO BE NUMBERED IN CHRONOLOGICAL ORDER AND, WHERE THERE ARE TWO OR MORE SHIPMENTS UNDER THE SAME CHANGE OF STATION ORDERS ON WHICH EXCESS WEIGHT IS INVOLVED, IT IS REQUIRED THAT THE EXCESS WEIGHT WILL BE COMPUTED ON THE SHIPMENT WHICH CONTAINED THE EXCESS WEIGHT AS DETERMINED FROM SUCH CHRONOLOGICAL SEQUENCE.

YOUR FIRST SHIPMENT, BY FREIGHT ON GOVERNMENT BILL OF LADING NO. 130 K- 62, HAD A GROSS WEIGHT OF 229 POUNDS. THAT WEIGHT AS REDUCED BY THE AUTHORIZED ALLOWANCE OF 92 POUNDS (40 PERCENT) FOR PACKING AND CRATING MATERIALS REPRESENTED A NET WEIGHT OF 137 POUNDS WHICH, WHEN SUBTRACTED FROM YOUR WEIGHT ALLOWANCE OF 5,000 POUNDS, LEFT A NET WEIGHT OF 4,863 POUNDS IN YOUR SECOND SHIPMENT AUTHORIZED AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE. YOUR REMAINING HOUSEHOLD GOODS WERE PACKED FOR SHIPMENT BY VAN AND WEIGHED 5,800 POUNDS, AS HERETOFORE STATED. THE WEIGHT OF YOUR SECOND SHIPMENT WHEN REDUCED BY THE AUTHORIZED FIVE PERCENT FOR MOVEMENT IN AN UNCRATED CONDITION BY SEA VAN OR MOTOR VAN, CONSTITUTED A NET WEIGHT OF 5,510 POUNDS, AN EXCESS OF 647 POUNDS OVER YOUR REMAINING NET WEIGHT ALLOWANCE. PARAGRAPH 58118 OF THE BUREAU OF SUPPLIES AND ACCOUNTS MANUAL PROVIDES THAT IN THE COMPUTATION OF THE EXCESS COSTS CHARGEABLE TO THE MEMBER IN SUCH CASES THE NET WEIGHT OF THE EXCESS PORTION WILL BE ADJUSTED TO THE GROSS WEIGHT BY INCREASING THE NET WEIGHT 5.263 PERCENT, WHICH IN YOUR CASE WAS 34 POUNDS, MAKING AN EXCESS GROSS WEIGHT OF 681 POUNDS. THE COST TO THE GOVERNMENT FOR SHIPPING THE EXCESS GROSS WEIGHT WAS AT THE RATE OF $18.50 A HUNDRED POUNDS, OR $125.99, FOR THE TRANSPORTATION BY WATER FROM KODIAK TO SEATTLE, AND AT THE RATE OF $9.20 A HUNDRED POUNDS, OR $62.65, FOR THE LAND TRANSPORTATION FROM SEATTLE TO SAN DIEGO, MAKING A TOTAL COST TO THE GOVERNMENT OF $188.64 FOR SHIPPING THE UNAUTHORIZED WEIGHT. SINCE THE GOVERNMENT IS OBLIGATED TO PAY THE CARRIERS FOR THE TOTAL WEIGHTS AT THE TIME OF THE SHIPMENTS, AND SHIPPING COSTS FOR WEIGHT THEN IN EXCESS OF THE MAXIMUM OVER-ALL WEIGHTS FIXED BY THE REGULATIONS ARE PROPERLY CHARGEABLE TO THE MEMBER, REFUND OF THE AMOUNTS COLLECTED FROM YOUR PAY ON THAT BASIS MAY NOT BE MADE.

REGARDING YOUR INQUIRY AS TO THE PROPER AUTHORITIES THROUGH WHICH YOUR CLAIM SHOULD BE SUBMITTED, PARAGRAPH 58119, BUREAU OF SUPPLIES AND ACCOUNTS MANUAL, PROVIDES IN SUCH CASES THAT ,IF, AFTER THE PAY ACCOUNT CHECK AGE HAS BEEN ACCOMPLISHED, THE MEMBER FOR ANY REASON CONSIDERS THE AMOUNT FOR WHICH CHECKED TO BE ERRONEOUS, HE MAY FILE A CLAIM WITH THE GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE, WASHINGTON, D.C., VIA THE NAVY REGIONAL FINANCE OFFICE, WASHINGTON, D.C., FOR REFUND OF SUCH AMOUNT AS HE MAY CONSIDER TO BE DUE HIM.' YOUR CLAIM WAS FORWARDED TO THIS OFFICE BY THE NAVY REGIONAL ACCOUNTS OFFICE IN ACCORDANCE WITH THAT PROVISION. THE STATEMENT MADE IN THE SETTLEMENT OF NOVEMBER 15, 1962, CONCERNING THE REFERRAL OF CASES TO THE APPROPRIATE NAVAL AUTHORITY WAS MADE IN REFERENCE TO THE PROVISIONS OF PARAGRAPH 8002-3 (CONTAINED IN PARAGRAPH 8001-3 AT THE TIME OF YOUR MOVEMENT) OF THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS WHICH PROVIDES FOR REFERRAL TO APPROPRIATE AUTHORITY OF THE SERVICE CONCERNED FOR AUTHORIZATION TO DEVIATE FROM THE PRESCRIBED PACKING AND CRATING ALLOWANCES IN THOSE CASES WHERE THE TARE WEIGHTS ARE EXCESSIVE THROUGH NO FAULT OF THE OWNER. INSTRUCTIONS REGARDING SUCH SITUATIONS ARE CONTAINED IN PARAGRAPH 58012-2, BUSANDA MANUAL, AS FOLLOWS:

"2. EXCESS TARE WEIGHT. WHEN THE TARE WEIGHT OF A SHIPMENT IS IN EXCESS OF THE PRESCRIBED ALLOWANCES THROUGH NO FAULT OF THE OWNER AND SUPPORTING DOCUMENTS ESTABLISHING THE ACTUAL NET WEIGHT HAVE BEEN MADE AVAILABLE TO THE NAVY REGIONAL FINANCE OFFICE, WASHINGTON, D.C., THAT OFFICE WILL USE SUCH ACTUAL NET WEIGHT IN DETERMINING ANY EXCESS WEIGHT INVOLVED.'

THE RECORD SHOWS THAT THE NAVY REGIONAL ACCOUNTS OFFICE COMPUTED THE NET WEIGHT BY USING THE PRESCRIBED WEIGHT ALLOWANCES FOR PACKING IN DETERMINING THE AMOUNT OF EXCESS COSTS FOR COLLECTION FROM YOUR PAY, AND THE FILE AS FORWARDED HERE BY THAT OFFICE CONTAINS NO EVIDENCE OF A DETERMINATION MADE UNDER THE QUOTED PROVISIONS, AND NO SUPPORTING DOCUMENTS WHICH PURPORT TO ESTABLISH THE ACTUAL NET WEIGHT OF THE HOUSEHOLD GOODS INVOLVED IN YOUR MOVEMENT FROM KODIAK TO SAN DIEGO. THE STATEMENT OF THE NAVY INSPECTOR AT SAN DIEGO WAS MERELY AN ESTIMATE OF SUCH WEIGHT.

ACCORDINGLY, THE DISALLOWANCES OF YOUR CLAIM BY SETTLEMENT OF NOVEMBER 15, 1962, WAS CORRECT AND IS SUSTAINED.