B-155462, DEC. 15, 1964

B-155462: Dec 15, 1964

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DECK: FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF OCTOBER 16. YOU WERE RELIEVED FROM ACTIVE DUTY WITH HEADQUARTERS COMPANY. YOUR HOME OF RECORD WAS STATED TO BE PHOENIX. YOUR CLAIM COVERING THAT TRAVEL WAS ADMINISTRATIVELY DENIED FOR THE REASON THAT YOUR WIFE HAD PERFORMED THE TRAVEL PRIOR TO THE ISSUANCE OF THE ORDERS OF NOVEMBER 25. IN THE ABSENCE OF A CERTIFICATE STATING YOU WERE ADVISED PRIOR TO THE ISSUANCE OF CHANGE OF STATION ORDERS THAT SUCH ORDERS WOULD BE ISSUED. THE REQUEST STATED THAT YOU WERE SCHEDULED FOR RELEASE FROM ACTIVE DUTY ON NOVEMBER 27. SINCE SHE WAS DUE TO GIVE BIRTH TO A BABY IN NOVEMBER 1963. THE RECORD SHOWS THAT THE ADVANCE SHIPMENT OF YOUR HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS WAS APPROVED OCTOBER 14.

B-155462, DEC. 15, 1964

TO MR. RAYMOND B. DECK:

FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF OCTOBER 16, 1964, REQUESTING RECONSIDERATION OF OUR SETTLEMENT OF SEPTEMBER 16, 1964, WHICH DISALLOWED YOUR CLAIM FOR REIMBURSEMENT OF THE COST OF TRANSPORTATION OF YOUR DEPENDENT WIFE FROM BROWNS MILLS, NEW JERSEY, TO PHOENIX, ARIZONA, ON SEPTEMBER 13, 1963.

BY PARAGRAPH 189, SPECIAL ORDERS NO. 329, HEADQUARTERS, U.S. ARMY PERSONNEL CENTER, FORT DIX, NEW JERSEY, DATED NOVEMBER 25, 1963, YOU WERE RELIEVED FROM ACTIVE DUTY WITH HEADQUARTERS COMPANY, 4TH TRAINING REGIMENT, U.S. ARMY TRAINING CENTER, INFANTRY, FORT DIX, NEW JERSEY, EFFECTIVE NOVEMBER 27, 1963, AND TRANSFERRED TO THE UNITED STATES ARMY RESERVE. YOUR HOME OF RECORD WAS STATED TO BE PHOENIX, ARIZONA.

THE RECORD SHOWS THAT ON SEPTEMBER 13, 1963, YOUR WIFE LEFT BROWNS MILLS, NEW JERSEY, AND ARRIVED AT PHOENIX, ARIZONA, THE SAME DAY. BY LETTER OF MARCH 24, 1964, YOUR CLAIM COVERING THAT TRAVEL WAS ADMINISTRATIVELY DENIED FOR THE REASON THAT YOUR WIFE HAD PERFORMED THE TRAVEL PRIOR TO THE ISSUANCE OF THE ORDERS OF NOVEMBER 25, 1963, AND IN THE ABSENCE OF A CERTIFICATE STATING YOU WERE ADVISED PRIOR TO THE ISSUANCE OF CHANGE OF STATION ORDERS THAT SUCH ORDERS WOULD BE ISSUED.

BY LETTER OF JULY 7, 1964, YOU TRANSMITTED PAPERS PERTAINING TO THE SHIPMENT OF YOUR HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS TO YOUR HOME OF RECORD PRIOR TO ORDERS. THESE PAPERS INCLUDED A REQUEST DATED SEPTEMBER 25, 1963, FOR SHIPMENT OF THESE EFFECTS FROM BROWNS MILLS, NEW JERSEY, TO PHOENIX, ARIZONA, PRIOR TO ORDERS. THE REQUEST STATED THAT YOU WERE SCHEDULED FOR RELEASE FROM ACTIVE DUTY ON NOVEMBER 27, 1963, AND THAT YOUR WIFE HAD ALREADY DEPARTED FOR YOUR PERMANENT HOME ADDRESS IN PHOENIX, ARIZONA, SINCE SHE WAS DUE TO GIVE BIRTH TO A BABY IN NOVEMBER 1963. THE RECORD SHOWS THAT THE ADVANCE SHIPMENT OF YOUR HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS WAS APPROVED OCTOBER 14, 1963, AND SHIPMENT WAS MADE SHORTLY THEREAFTER.

IN YOUR LETTER OF OCTOBER 16, 1964, YOU STATE THAT ALTHOUGH THERE WAS A CONSIDERABLE LENGTH OF TIME BETWEEN THE DATE YOUR WIFE LEFT FOR YOUR HOME OF RECORD AND THE DATE OF YOUR DISCHARGE, IT WAS NECESSARY FOR HER TO LEAVE AT THAT TIME BECAUSE SHE WAS UNDER DOCTOR'S ORDERS TO LEAVE NO LATER THAN SEPTEMBER 1963. YOU STATE FURTHER THAT SINCE YOU HAD MADE UP YOUR MIND THAT YOU WOULD NOT REENLIST, YOU WERE FAIRLY CERTAIN THAT YOU WOULD BE DISCHARGED ON NOVEMBER 27, 1963. WITH RESPECT TO THE STATEMENT THAT WHEN YOU HAD REQUESTED AUTHORITY FOR ADVANCE SHIPMENT OF YOUR HOUSEHOLD GOODS YOU INDICATED THAT YOUR WIFE HAD ALREADY GONE, YOU STATE THAT YOU HAD STARTED YOUR REQUEST THROUGH CHANNELS PRIOR TO THE TIME SHE LEFT BUT THAT SHE WAS UNABLE TO STAY WITH YOU UNTIL YOU RECEIVED AN ANSWER.

PARAGRAPH 7000-9 OF THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS, PROMULGATED PURSUANT TO THE PERTINENT STATUTE, 37 U.S.C. 406, AND IN EFFECT AT THE TIME INVOLVED, PROVIDES THAT MEMBERS OF THE UNIFORMED SERVICES ARE ENTITLED TO THE TRANSPORTATION OF DEPENDENTS AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE UPON A PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION (WHICH INCLUDES THAT FROM LAST DUTY STATION TO HOME ON RELEASE FROM ACTIVE DUTY), EXCEPT WHEN DEPENDENTS DEPART THE OLD STATION PRIOR TO THE ISSUANCE OF ORDERS AND THE VOUCHER IS NOT SUPPORTED BY A CERTIFICATE OF THE COMMANDING OFFICER, OR HIS DESIGNATED REPRESENTATIVE, OF THE HEADQUARTERS ISSUING THE ORDERS THAT THE MEMBER WAS ADVISED PRIOR TO THE ISSUANCE OF CHANGE OF STATION ORDERS THAT SUCH ORDERS WOULD BE ISSUED.

THE PURPOSE OF THE STATUTE AUTHORIZING TRANSPORTATION OF DEPENDENTS AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE IS TO RELIEVE A MEMBER OF THE BURDEN OF PERSONALLY DEFRAYING THE TRAVEL EXPENSES OF HIS DEPENDENTS WHEN SUCH TRAVEL IS MADE NECESSARY BY AN ORDERED CHANGE OF STATION. CONSEQUENTLY THE CITED REGULATIONS AUTHORIZE DEPENDENTS' TRANSPORTATION ONLY IN THOSE CIRCUMSTANCES WHERE THEIR TRAVEL IS IN FACT INCIDENT TO THE MEMBER'S CHANGE OF STATION BY LIMITING SUCH AUTHORIZATION TO TRAVEL THAT IS PERFORMED AFTER CHANGE OF STATION ORDERS ACTUALLY ARE ISSUED OR, IN CERTAIN CIRCUMSTANCES, WITHIN A BRIEF PERIOD IMMEDIATELY PRIOR TO THEIR ISSUANCE WHERE THE MEMBER HAS BEEN ADVISED THAT THE ORDERS WOULD BE ISSUED. 34 COMP. GEN. 241.

SINCE IT SEEMS APPARENT THAT YOUR WIFE WOULD NOT HAVE DEPARTED YOUR STATION PRIOR TO YOUR RELEASE BUT FOR HER PREGNANCY HER EARLY TRAVEL TO YOUR HOME OF RECORD MUST BE VIEWED AS HAVING BEEN OCCASIONED BY HER PHYSICAL CONDITION RATHER THAN BECAUSE OF THE ANTICIPATED CHANGE OF STATION. UNDER SUCH CIRCUMSTANCES, EVEN THOUGH YOUR ORDERS OF NOVEMBER 25, 1963, PROVIDED AUTHORIZATION FOR THE TRANSPORTATION OF DEPENDENTS, THEY AFFORD NO BASIS FOR ALLOWING REIMBURSEMENT FOR THAT TRAVEL WHICH HAD ALREADY TAKEN PLACE.

ACCORDINGLY THE SETTLEMENT OF SEPTEMBER 16, 1964, WAS CORRECT AND IS SUSTAINED.