B-158726, MAY 4, 1966

B-158726: May 4, 1966

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RO 14 254 452: FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF FEBRUARY 28. WHICH WAS DISALLOWED BY SETTLEMENT DATED AUGUST 18. BY THESE ORDERS YOU WERE REASSIGNED FROM FORT GORDON. YOU WERE ASSIGNED GOVERNMENT QUARTERS EFFECTIVE MARCH 12. YOU WERE PAID TEMPORARY LODGING ALLOWANCE FOR 60 DAYS FOR THE PERIOD NOVEMBER 25. DISALLOWING YOUR CLAIM FOR THE REASON THAT ENTITLEMENT TO TEMPORARY LODGING ALLOWANCE WILL NOT EXCEED 60 DAYS. DURING PROCESSING YOU SAY YOU APPLIED FOR GOVERNMENT QUARTERS AND IT WAS INDICATED BY THE HOUSING ASSIGNMENT SECTION THAT IT EXPECTED QUARTERS WOULD BE AVAILABLE BEFORE THE END OF JANUARY 1965. THE ASSIGNMENT OF QUARTERS WAS DELAYED UNTIL MARCH 12. YOU STATE THAT THE EXISTING HOUSING SITUATION IN FRANCE IS SUCH THAT AT THE CONCLUSION OF THE 60-DAY PERIOD FOR WHICH TEMPORARY LODGING ALLOWANCE WAS AUTHORIZED.

B-158726, MAY 4, 1966

TO SERGEANT MAJOR JESSE E. COFER, RO 14 254 452:

FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF FEBRUARY 28, 1966, AND ENCLOSURES, CONCERNING YOUR CLAIM FOR ADDITIONAL TEMPORARY LODGING ALLOWANCE FOR 47 DAYS INCIDENT TO YOUR OVERSEAS ASSIGNMENT BY SPECIAL ORDERS NO. 232 DATES SEPTEMBER 14, 1964, WHICH WAS DISALLOWED BY SETTLEMENT DATED AUGUST 18, 1965.

BY THESE ORDERS YOU WERE REASSIGNED FROM FORT GORDON, GEORGIA, TO THE 106TH SIGNAL GROUP, APO 128, NEW YORK, NEW YORK, WITH YOUR AVAILABLE DATE SHOWN AS NOVEMBER 20, 1964. BY SPECIAL ORDERS NO. 52 DATED MARCH 10, 1965, YOU WERE ASSIGNED GOVERNMENT QUARTERS EFFECTIVE MARCH 12, 1965, AT YOUR NEW STATION IN FRANCE AND AUTHORIZED TO MOVE YOUR HOUSEHOLD GOODS TO THEM FROM LOCAL ECONOMY HOUSING. YOU WERE PAID TEMPORARY LODGING ALLOWANCE FOR 60 DAYS FOR THE PERIOD NOVEMBER 25, 1964, TO JANUARY 23, 1965, INCIDENT TO THE OCCUPANCY OF HOTEL ACCOMMODATIONS WITH YOUR DEPENDENTS AFTER ARRIVAL AT YOUR OVERSEAS STATION. YOU SAY IN YOUR LETTER OF FEBRUARY 28, 1966, THAT YOU UNDERSTAND THE SETTLEMENT OF AUGUST 18, 1965, DISALLOWING YOUR CLAIM FOR THE REASON THAT ENTITLEMENT TO TEMPORARY LODGING ALLOWANCE WILL NOT EXCEED 60 DAYS, BUT THAT YOU WANT THE MATTER CONSIDERED AS A CLAIM IN EQUITY AND PRESENTED TO CONGRESS.

YOU ALLEGE THAT WHEN YOU ARRIVED WITH YOUR DEPENDENTS AT YOUR STATION IN FRANCE, HOTEL RESERVATIONS HAD BEEN MADE FOR YOURSELF AND FAMILY. DURING PROCESSING YOU SAY YOU APPLIED FOR GOVERNMENT QUARTERS AND IT WAS INDICATED BY THE HOUSING ASSIGNMENT SECTION THAT IT EXPECTED QUARTERS WOULD BE AVAILABLE BEFORE THE END OF JANUARY 1965. DUE TO UNEXPECTED DELAYS IN THE DEPARTURE OF PERSONNEL FROM THAT STATION, HOWEVER, THE ASSIGNMENT OF QUARTERS WAS DELAYED UNTIL MARCH 12, 1965. YOU STATE THAT THE EXISTING HOUSING SITUATION IN FRANCE IS SUCH THAT AT THE CONCLUSION OF THE 60-DAY PERIOD FOR WHICH TEMPORARY LODGING ALLOWANCE WAS AUTHORIZED, YOU COULD HAVE LOCATED AND LEASED ACCOMMODATIONS ON THE LOCAL ECONOMY. HOWEVER, YOU INDICATE THAT THE EXPENSES INVOLVED INCIDENT TO LEASING QUARTERS AND THE ONE-YEAR LEASE THAT IS REQUIRED MADE YOU RELUCTANT TO LEASE SUCH QUARTERS SINCE IT WAS EXPECTED THAT GOVERNMENT QUARTERS WOULD BECOME AVAILABLE SHORTLY.

SECTION 404 OF TITLE 37, U.S.C. PROVIDES THAT UNDER REGULATIONS PRESCRIBED BY THE SECRETARIES CONCERNED, A MEMBER OF A UNIFORMED SERVICE IS ENTITLED TO TRAVEL AND TRANSPORTATION ALLOWANCES UPON A CHANGE OF PERMANENT STATION. SECTION 405 OF THE SAME TITLE PROVIDES THAT THE SECRETARIES CONCERNED MAY AUTHORIZE THE PAYMENT OF A PER DIEM, CONSIDERING ALL ELEMENTS OF THE COST OF LIVING TO MEMBERS OF THE UNIFORMED SERVICES, INCLUDING A COST OF QUARTERS, SUBSISTENCE, AND OTHER NECESSARY INCIDENTAL EXPENSES TO SUCH A MEMBER WHO IS ON DUTY OUTSIDE THE UNITED STATES OR IN HAWAII OR ALASKA, WHETHER OR NOT HE IS IN A TRAVEL STATUS. PARAGRAPH M4303-2B OF THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS, IN EFFECT DURING THE PERIOD INVOLVED, PROVIDED THAT THE PERIOD OF ENTITLEMENT TO THE TEMPORARY LODGING ALLOWANCE, UPON INITIAL ASSIGNMENT TO A PERMANENT DUTY STATION OUTSIDE THE UNITED STATES WOULD NOT EXCEED 60 DAYS. THUS, YOU HAVE BEEN PAID TEMPORARY LODGING ALLOWANCE FOR THE MAXIMUM PERIOD AUTHORIZED BY THE REGULATIONS IN EFFECT DURING THE PERIOD OF YOUR CLAIM.

AS TO THE POSSIBLE ELEMENTS OF EQUITY IN YOUR CASE, PARAGRAPH M4303 OF THE REGULATIONS PROVIDES THAT TEMPORARY LODGING ALLOWANCE IS AUTHORIZED FOR THE PURPOSE OF PARTIALLY REIMBURSING A MEMBER FOR THE MORE THAN NORMAL EXPENSES INCURRED AT HOTELS AND PUBLIC RESTAURANTS UPON INITIAL ARRIVAL AT A PERMANENT DUTY STATION OUTSIDE THE UNITED STATES PENDING ASSIGNMENT OF GOVERNMENT QUARTERS OR, IF SUCH QUARTERS ARE NOT AVAILABLE, PENDING THE COMPLETION OF ARRANGEMENTS FOR OTHER PERMANENT ACCOMMODATIONS. THUS, THE ALLOWANCE IS NOT INTENDED TO PROVIDE COMPLETE REIMBURSEMENT OF THE MORE THAN NORMAL LIVING EXPENSES INCURRED IN THESE CIRCUMSTANCES. OTHER MEMBERS OF THE UNIFORMED SERVICES IN SITUATIONS SIMILAR TO YOURS ARE SUBJECT TO THE SAME TEMPORARY LODGING ALLOWANCE REGULATIONS AND NO DOUBT MANY OF THEM SUFFER FINANCIAL LOSS IN SUCH SITUATIONS. HENCE, WE DO NOT CONSIDER THAT YOUR CLAIM CONTAINS SUCH ELEMENTS OF LEGAL LIABILITY OR EQUITY AS WOULD WARRANT THE REPORTING OF IT TO THE CONGRESS UNDER THE ACT OF APRIL 10, 1928, 31 U.S.C. 236. ACCORDINGLY,NO ACTION WILL BE TAKEN TO REPORT YOUR CLAIM TO THE CONGRESS UNDER THAT ACT.