B-157154, JUL. 23, 1965

B-157154: Jul 23, 1965

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HE WAS AUTHORIZED TRANSPORTATION OF HIS IMMEDIATE FAMILY. USE OF PRIVATELY OWNED AUTOMOBILE WAS ADMINISTRATIVELY DETERMINED TO BE MORE ADVANTAGEOUS TO THE GOVERNMENT. BLOCK 10 OF THE EMPLOYEE'S TRAVEL ORDER THERE APPEARS THE FOLLOWING STATEMENT: "WHERE TRANSPORTATION IN ONE AUTOMOBILE IS NOT FEASIBLE. REIMBURSEMENT FOR USE OF SECOND AUTOMOBILE WILL BE AT THE RATE OF ?08 PER MILE NOT TO EXCEED COST BY COMMON CARRIER FOR ALL PERSONS TRANSPORTED.'. KINNAMAN DROVE ONE OF THE AUTOMOBILES WHILE AN OLDER SON APPARENTLY NOT A MEMBER OF THE IMMEDIATE FAMILY AND WHO WAS NOT TRANSFERRING TO THE NEW POST DROVE THE OTHER. THE EMPLOYEE WAS PAID MILEAGE AT THE RATE OF 11 CENTS FOR THE USE OF THE AUTOMOBILES BUT MILEAGE AT THE RATE OF 8 CENTS FOR THE SECOND AUTOMOBILE WAS ADMINISTRATIVELY DISALLOWED FOR THE REASON THAT THE EMPLOYEE FAILED TO ESTABLISH THE NECESSITY FOR TRAVELING IN TWO AUTOMOBILES.

B-157154, JUL. 23, 1965

TO MISS MARY M. RYDQUIST, AUTHORIZED CERTIFYING OFFICER, BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT:

THIS REFERS TO YOUR LETTER OF JUNE 14, 1965, WITH ENCLOSURES, REFERENCE 1386 (3.21), REQUESTING OUR DECISION AS TO THE PROPRIETY OF CERTIFYING FOR PAYMENT THE RECLAIM VOUCHER TRANSMITTED THEREWITH IN FAVOR OF MR. DALE H. KINNAMAN FOR $78.08, REPRESENTING MILEAGE FOR THE TRANSPORTATION OF A SECOND AUTOMOBILE INCIDENT TO A TRANSFER OF STATION.

TRAVEL ORDER NO. FAO-D-64-91 SPECIAL, DATED MAY 22, 1964, DIRECTED THE EMPLOYEE'S PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION FROM SHOSHONE, IDAHO, TO SANTA FE, NEW MEXICO. HE WAS AUTHORIZED TRANSPORTATION OF HIS IMMEDIATE FAMILY, TRAVEL BY COMMON CARRIER, AND TRAVEL BY PRIVATELY OWNED AUTOMOBILE AT A MILEAGE RATE OF 11 CENTS. USE OF PRIVATELY OWNED AUTOMOBILE WAS ADMINISTRATIVELY DETERMINED TO BE MORE ADVANTAGEOUS TO THE GOVERNMENT. BLOCK 10 OF THE EMPLOYEE'S TRAVEL ORDER THERE APPEARS THE FOLLOWING STATEMENT:

"WHERE TRANSPORTATION IN ONE AUTOMOBILE IS NOT FEASIBLE, WIFE AND FAMILY MAY TRAVEL BY PERSONAL AUTOMOBILE SEPARATE AND APART FROM EMPLOYEE (SEE SEC. 1382, APPENDIX 1 (4-30) BLM MANUAL CONCERNING JUSTIFICATION FOR USE OF TWO AUTOMOBILES.) REIMBURSEMENT FOR USE OF SECOND AUTOMOBILE WILL BE AT THE RATE OF ?08 PER MILE NOT TO EXCEED COST BY COMMON CARRIER FOR ALL PERSONS TRANSPORTED.'

THE RECORD DISCLOSES THAT MR. KINNAMAN AND HIS IMMEDIATE FAMILY (CONSISTING OF HIS WIFE AND ONE CHILD) DEPARTED FROM SHOSHONE IN TWO PRIVATE AUTOMOBILES ON JUNE 30, 1964, AND ARRIVED IN SANTA FE ON JULY 3, 1964. MR. KINNAMAN DROVE ONE OF THE AUTOMOBILES WHILE AN OLDER SON APPARENTLY NOT A MEMBER OF THE IMMEDIATE FAMILY AND WHO WAS NOT TRANSFERRING TO THE NEW POST DROVE THE OTHER. IN A MEMORANDUM DATED APRIL 28, 1965, MR. KINNAMAN STATES THAT HIS WIFE DOES NOT DRIVE.

THE EMPLOYEE WAS PAID MILEAGE AT THE RATE OF 11 CENTS FOR THE USE OF THE AUTOMOBILES BUT MILEAGE AT THE RATE OF 8 CENTS FOR THE SECOND AUTOMOBILE WAS ADMINISTRATIVELY DISALLOWED FOR THE REASON THAT THE EMPLOYEE FAILED TO ESTABLISH THE NECESSITY FOR TRAVELING IN TWO AUTOMOBILES.

IN OUR DECISION 27 COMP. GEN. 57, WE ESTABLISHED THE GENERAL RULE THAT WHEN TRAVEL OF AN EMPLOYEE AND HIS DEPENDENTS TO A NEW DUTY STATION IS PERFORMED BY MEANS OF MORE THAN ONE PRIVATELY-OWNED AUTOMOBILE, MILEAGE MAY BE ALLOWED ONLY FOR THE USE OF ONE AUTOMOBILE, UNLESS IT IS SHOWN THAT TRANSPORTATION IN ONE AUTOMOBILE WAS NOT FEASIBLE. THAT RULE IS INCORPORATED IN THE STATEMENT APPEARING IN BLOCK 10 OF THE EMPLOYEE'S TRAVEL ORDER (QUOTED ABOVE).

WHILE WE HAVE, UNDER VARIOUS CIRCUMSTANCES, ALLOWED THE PAYMENT OF MILEAGE FOR THE USE OF TWO AUTOMOBILES (SEE 32 COMP. GEN. 342; 38 ID. 542), WE WOULD NOT, ON THE BASIS OF THE CLAIMANT'S JUSTIFICATION HERE, BE WARRANTED IN CONCLUDING, CONTRARY TO THE ADMINISTRATIVE JUDGMENT REACHED IN THE CASE, THAT TRANSPORTATION OF THE EMPLOYEE AND HIS IMMEDIATE FAMILY IN ONE AUTOMOBILE WAS NOT FEASIBLE. RATHER, IT APPEARS FROM THERECORD THAT THE TRANSPORTATION OF THE SECOND AUTOMOBILE ITSELF WAS THE PRIMARY OBJECT OF THE MOVEMENT, THE COST FOR WHICH THE CLAIMANT NORMALLY WOULD BE LIABLE. IN THAT REGARD SEE 5 U.S.C. 73C.

WE NOTE THAT THE EMPLOYEE HAS BEEN PAID MILEAGE COMPUTED ON THE BASIS OF 976 MILES--- THE DISTANCE RECORDED ON HIS SPEEDOMETER. THE DISTANCE BETWEEN TWIN FALLS, IDAHO, AND SANTA FE, NEW MEXICO, IS SHOWN IN THE STANDARD HIGHWAY MILEAGE GUIDE TO BE 850 MILES, AND THE DISTANCE BETWEEN SHOSHONE, IDAHO, AND TWIN FALLS IS APPROXIMATELY 25 MILES, RESULTING IN A TOTAL DISTANCE OF 875 MILES. THAT AMOUNT IS SUBSTANTIALLY LESS THAN THE DISTANCE REPORTED BY MR. KINNAMAN. WE NOTE ALSO THAT THE COMMUTED RATE REIMBURSEMENT TO THE EMPLOYEE FOR SHIPMENT OF HIS HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS BETWEEN SHOSHONE AND SANTA FE WAS BASED ON 875 MILES. IT APPEARS, THEREFORE, THAT IN ACCORDANCE WITH SECTION 3.5B OF THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS, AN ADJUSTMENT IN THE AMOUNT PREVIOUSLY PAID TO MR. KINNAMAN FOR MILEAGE MAY BE WARRANTED UNLESS OF COURSE HE IS ABLE TO JUSTIFY THE DEVIATION.

FOR THE REASONS EXPRESSED ABOVE, THE VOUCHER, WHICH IS RETURNED HEREWITH, MAY NOT BE CERTIFIED FOR PAYMENT.