B-157396, AUG. 27, 1965

B-157396: Aug 27, 1965

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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER RECEIVED ON JULY 30. THE SOLE QUESTION PROMPTING YOUR SUBMISSION OF THE MATTER FOR DECISION IS WHETHER. THE PER DIEM RATE APPLICABLE TO POLAND WAS $16 UNTIL JUNE 15. WHEN IT WAS REDUCED TO $6. THESE TRAVELERS WERE ADVISED BY THE UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE. THEY PROCEEDED TO DO THIS THROUGH THEIR LOCAL TRAVEL AGENT WHO WAS REQUIRED BY THE POLISH GOVERNMENT TOURIST AGENCY. - WHICH WAS CONVERTED INTO ZLOTYS AT THE OFFICIAL RATE OF 24 TO $1. THE EMBASSY WAS AUTHORIZED TO DECLASSIFY THE EXCHANGE RATE TO 65 ZYLOTYS TO $1. THE PER DIEM RATE WAS LOWERED FROM $16 TO $6 ON JUNE 15. THE VOUCHERS SUBMITTED WITH YOUR LETTER ARE RETURNED HEREWITH AND MAY BE CERTIFIED FOR PAYMENT.

B-157396, AUG. 27, 1965

TO MRS. BETTY F. LEATHERMAN, AUTHORIZED CERTIFYING OFFICER, OFFICE OF THE SECRETARY, U.S. DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER RECEIVED ON JULY 30, 1965, REQUESTING A DECISION WHETHER YOU MAY CERTIFY FOR PAYMENT THE TRAVEL VOUCHERS OF TWO PRIVATE CITIZENS, TRAVELING AT THE INVITATION OF THE DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE, OFFICE OF INTERNATIONAL TRADE PROMOTION, TO THE POZNAN FAIR IN POLAND. THE SOLE QUESTION PROMPTING YOUR SUBMISSION OF THE MATTER FOR DECISION IS WHETHER, UNDER THE FACTS AND CIRCUMSTANCES HEREINAFTER SET FORTH, THE INDIVIDUALS CONCERNED MAY BE PAID PER DIEM AT THE RATE OF $16 AFTER JUNE 15, 1965, THE EFFECTIVE DATE OF A DEPARTMENT OF STATE INSTRUCTION REDUCING THE PER DIEM RATE APPLICABLE TO POLAND TO $6.

THE TRAVEL ORDERS OF THE INDIVIDUALS PROVIDED FOR A PER DIEM RATE CONSISTING OF THE MAXIMUM RATES ALLOWABLE IN ACCORDANCE WITH APPENDIX I (REVISED) OF THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS AND SECTION 925 STATE DEPARTMENT STANDARDIZED REGULATIONS (GOVERNMENT CIVILIAN AND FOREIGN AREAS) BEYOND THE LIMITS OF CONTINENTAL UNITED STATES. THE PER DIEM RATE APPLICABLE TO POLAND WAS $16 UNTIL JUNE 15, 1965, WHEN IT WAS REDUCED TO $6.

ON MARCH 5, 1965, THESE TRAVELERS WERE ADVISED BY THE UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE, CHIEF, TRAVEL SECTION FOR CONTRACTING OFFICER, IN A LETTER SIGNED BY RITA A. SOUCY, TO MAKE THEIR OWN LODGING ACCOMMODATIONS. THEY PROCEEDED TO DO THIS THROUGH THEIR LOCAL TRAVEL AGENT WHO WAS REQUIRED BY THE POLISH GOVERNMENT TOURIST AGENCY, TO REMIT THE SUM OF $25 PER DAY FOR EACH INDIVIDUAL--- WE UNDERSTAND SUCH SUMS AMOUNTED TO $425 IN THE CASE OF ONE OF THE INDIVIDUALS AND $300 IN THE CASE OF THE OTHER--- WHICH WAS CONVERTED INTO ZLOTYS AT THE OFFICIAL RATE OF 24 TO $1.

ON JUNE 10, 1965, THE EMBASSY WAS AUTHORIZED TO DECLASSIFY THE EXCHANGE RATE TO 65 ZYLOTYS TO $1, THEREBY MAKING THIS RATE AVAILABLE TO AMERICAN TECHNICIANS TRAVELING UNDER GOVERNMENT TRAVEL ORDERS. TO COMPENSATE FOR THE BENEFICIAL CHANGE IN RATE OF EXCHANGE FOR GOVERNMENT TRAVELERS, THE PER DIEM RATE WAS LOWERED FROM $16 TO $6 ON JUNE 15, 1965.

THE VOUCHERS SUBMITTED WITH YOUR LETTER ARE RETURNED HEREWITH AND MAY BE CERTIFIED FOR PAYMENT, IF OTHERWISE CORRECT, AT THE PER DIEM RATE OF $16 FOR THE ENTIRE PERIOD THE INDIVIDUALS REMAINED IN POZNAN. IT IS SIGNIFICANT THAT THE INDIVIDUALS WHO WERE RENDERING SERVICE UNDER INVITATIONAL TRAVEL ORDERS FOLLOWED ADMINISTRATIVE INSTRUCTIONS IN ARRANGING FOR THEIR TRAVEL AND WERE REQUIRED BY THE POLISH TRAVEL AGENCY TO PAY FOR THEIR ACCOMMODATIONS IN ADVANCE. MOREOVER, THE PER DIEM RATE FOR POLAND WAS REDUCED FROM $16 TO $6 SOLELY TO COMPENSATE FOR THE MORE BENEFICIAL CHANGE IN THE RATE OF EXCHANGE WHICH NEITHER MAN RECEIVED.

PROVIDED THE ONLY QUESTION INVOLVED IN THE FIVE ADDITIONAL CASES REFERRED TO IN YOUR LETTER IS IDENTICAL WITH THE QUESTION DECIDED IN THIS DECISION, THIS DECISION MAY BE USED AS A BASIS FOR CERTIFYING THE VOUCHERS IN THOSE CASES.