B-155113, JAN. 6, 1965

B-155113: Jan 6, 1965

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27595: FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER DATED AUGUST 25. YOU WERE TRANSFERRED FROM NEW ORLEANS. THE RECORD SHOWS THAT THE SHIPMENT OF YOUR EFFECTS WAS MADE TO YOUR NEW STATION. 460 POUNDS AND WAS SHIPPED BY VAN. THE SECOND LOT WEIGHED 961 POUNDS AND WAS SHIPPED VIA RAILWAY EXPRESS. - WAS COMPUTED AT $46.16. THE EXPRESS SHIPMENT WAS CONSIDERED TO BE YOUR SECOND SHIPMENT AND THEREFORE ALL IN EXCESS OF YOUR AUTHORIZED WEIGHT ALLOWANCE. YOU WERE CHARGED WITH THE ENTIRE COST OF THAT SHIPMENT IN THE SUM OF $135.75. AN ADDITIONAL CHARGE OF $63.29 WAS MADE AGAINST YOU REPRESENTING STORAGE. IN YOUR PRESENT LETTER YOU SAY THAT YOU BELIEVE YOU ARE ENTITLED TO AN ADJUSTMENT OF 40 PERCENT TARE WEIGHT ALLOWANCE.

B-155113, JAN. 6, 1965

TO STEPHEN T. WATSON, CHSCLK W3, USCG, 27595:

FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER DATED AUGUST 25, 1964, WITH ENCLOSURES, REQUESTING RECONSIDERATION OF SETTLEMENT DATED JULY 24, 1964, WHICH DISALLOWED YOUR CLAIM FOR REFUND OF COLLECTIONS MADE FROM YOUR PAY FOR THE EXCESS COSTS OF SHIPPING YOUR HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS UNDER THE CIRCUMSTANCES SHOWN BELOW.

BY ORDERS DATED JUNE 9, 1961, YOU WERE TRANSFERRED FROM NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA, TO HOUSTON, TEXAS. THE RECORD SHOWS THAT THE SHIPMENT OF YOUR EFFECTS WAS MADE TO YOUR NEW STATION, AT HOUSTON, TEXAS, IN 2 LOTS. ONE LOT WEIGHTED 9,460 POUNDS AND WAS SHIPPED BY VAN. THE SECOND LOT WEIGHED 961 POUNDS AND WAS SHIPPED VIA RAILWAY EXPRESS. EXCESS COSTS OF THE VAN SHIPMENT OVER YOUR AUTHORIZED 7,500 POUND ALLOWANCE--- AFTER ADJUSTMENT TO ALLOW CREDIT FOR 300 POUNDS OF PROFESSIONAL BOOKS AND PAPERS AND PACKING ALLOWANCE OF 458 POUNDS (5 PERCENT OF THE GROSS WEIGHT/--- WAS COMPUTED AT $46.16. THE EXPRESS SHIPMENT WAS CONSIDERED TO BE YOUR SECOND SHIPMENT AND THEREFORE ALL IN EXCESS OF YOUR AUTHORIZED WEIGHT ALLOWANCE, AND YOU WERE CHARGED WITH THE ENTIRE COST OF THAT SHIPMENT IN THE SUM OF $135.75. AN ADDITIONAL CHARGE OF $63.29 WAS MADE AGAINST YOU REPRESENTING STORAGE, HANDLING AND DELIVERY CHARGES ATTRIBUTABLE TO THE EXCESS WEIGHT INVOLVED IN THE VAN SHIPMENT. IN YOUR PRESENT LETTER YOU SAY THAT YOU BELIEVE YOU ARE ENTITLED TO AN ADJUSTMENT OF 40 PERCENT TARE WEIGHT ALLOWANCE, FOR THE REASON THAT YOUR EFFECTS WERE MOVED IN A CRATED CONDITION, INSTEAD OF 5 PERCENT WHICH WAS ALLOWED FOR PACKING AS FOR A VAN SHIPMENT.

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 LOCATION 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 THE 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 WIEGHT 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 CREATED CONDITION TO COVER THE WEIGHT OF PACKING MATERIALS, AND A 5 PERCENT INCREASE FOR PACKING MATERIALS WHEN THE MOVEMENT IS BY VAN OR FREIGHT FORWARDER IN AN 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. ALSO, IT PROVIDES THAT WHEN THE PRESCRIBED WEIGHT ALLOWANCE HAS BEEN EXHAUSTED BY PREVIOUSSHIPMENTS, ANY SUBSEQUENT SHIPMENTS ON THE SAME ORDERS WILL BE ARRANGED AT THE EXPENSE OF 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 8400-5 OF THE SAME REGULATIONS, IN EFFECT AT THE TIME, PROVIDES THAT THE OFFICER DESIGNATED BY THE SERVICE CONCERNED WILL DETERMINE ANY EXCESS COST IN EXCESS OF AUTHORIZED ALLOWANCES FOR WEIGHT, DISTANCE, AND METHOD OF SHIPMENT AND WILL NOTIFY THE MEMBER OF THE AMOUNT PAYABLE AND THE METHOD OF PAYMENT. THUS, THE QUESTION OF WHETHER THE WEIGHT OF YOUR HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS EXCEEDED YOUR AUTHORIZED WEIGHT ALLOWANCE WAS A MATTER PRIMARILY FOR ADMINISTRATIVE DETERMINATION. IN THIS CONNECTION, THE RECORD SHOWS THAT THE ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICE INVESTIGATED THE MATTER OF YOUR COMPLAINT REGARDING THE EXCESS WEIGHT ON THE VAN SHIPMENT. SUCH INQUIRY DISCLOSED THAT IN ADDITION TO ITEMS NORMAL TO HOUSEHOLD GOODS REMOVAL IT CONTAINED MANY ITEMS OF AN UNUSUAL NATURE, PARTICULARLY COLLECTIONS OF VARIOUS CURIOS, TROPHIES, INDIAN SPEARS, ROCKS, AND PLUMBING FITTINGS, AND THAT ADEQUATE LIGHTWEIGHT PACKING MATERIAL WITH A TOTAL ESTIMATED WEIGHT OF LESS THAN 400 POUNDS WAS USED BY THE CARRIER. IT WILL BE NOTED THAT SUCH WEIGHT IS LESS THAN THE 5 PERCENT ALLOWED BY THE REGULATIONS FOR PACKING MATERIALS INCIDENT TO A VAN SHIPMENT. BASED ON THIS, IT APPEARS THAT IT WAS ADMINISTRATIVELY CONSIDERED THAT THE SHIPMENT OF YOUR EFFECTS WAS ACCOMPLISHED IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE MILITARY STANDARDS AND SPECIFICATION FOR SHIPMENT OF HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS. IN THE CIRCUMSTANCES SHOWN THERE IS NO BASIS FOR US TO CONCLUDE THAT THE ADMINISTRATIVE DETERMINATION WAS ERRONEOUS.

HOWEVER, THE RECORD SHOWS THAT THE SHIPMENT WHICH WAS MOVED VIA RAILWAY EXPRESS AND WAS DESIGNATED A SECOND LOT ACTUALLY WAS PICKED UP AT YOUR RESIDENCE BEFORE THE VAN SHIPMENT BUT, FOR REASONS BEYOND YOUR CONTROL, WAS NOT DELIVERED TO THE RAILWAY EXPRESS OFFICE UNTIL AFTER THE VAN SHIPMENT WAS PROCESSED. IN VIEW OF THIS WE WILL REGARD THIS AS THE FIRST SHIPMENT AND ANY EXCESS COSTS WILL BE CHARGED AGAINST THE VAN SHIPMENT. ACCORDINGLY, WE HAVE TODAY INSTRUCTED OUR CLAIMS DIVISION TO RECOMPUTE THE EXCESS COSTS OF YOUR EFFECTS ON THIS BASIS. SETTLEMENT WILL ISSUE FOR THE CORRECT AMOUNT FOUND TO BE DUE AND YOU WILL BE ADVISED IN THE SETTLEMENT AS TO HOW THE AMOUNT WAS COMPUTED.