B-161304, MAY 4, 1967

B-161304: May 4, 1967

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THE MAJOR ITEM INVOLVED IS ONE FOR MISCELLANEOUS EXPENSES. A POLICY WAS ESTABLISHED BY THE DEFENSE LOGISTICS SERVICES CENTER THAT MISCELLANEOUS EXPENSES WOULD BE ITEMIZED AND ITEMS WHICH DID NOT APPEAR REASONABLE WOULD BE SUPPORTED BY RECEIPTS OR OTHER EVIDENCE SUPPORTING THE CLAIM.'. IS AS FOLLOWS: "A. A MISCELLANEOUS EXPENSE ALLOWANCE SHALL BE PAYABLE TO AN EMPLOYEE FOR WHOM A PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION IS AUTHORIZED OR APPROVED. REGARDLESS OF WHERE THE OLD OR NEW OFFICIAL STATIONS ARE LOCATED. SUBJECT TO THE FOLLOWING LIMITATIONS AND CONDITIONS AND PROVIDED THE AGREEMENT REQUIRED IN SUBSECTION 1.3C IS SIGNED. "/1) ALLOWANCES IN THE FOLLOWING AMOUNTS MAY BE PAID WITHOUT BEING SUPPORTED BY RECEIPTS OR ITEMIZED STATEMENTS INDICATING THE NATURE OF COSTS OR EXPENSES BEING REIMBURSED: "/A) $100 OR THE EQUIVALENT OF ONE WEEK'S BASIC COMPENSATION.

B-161304, MAY 4, 1967

TO MR. JOHN H. GREVE, CHIEF:

WE REFER TO YOUR LETTER OF APRIL 13, 1967, ENCLOSING A VOUCHER, WITH SUPPORTING PAPERS, IN FAVOR OF MR. JOHN M. PHILLIPS, AND REQUESTING OUR DECISION CONCERNING THE ALLOWABILITY OF CERTAIN ITEMS CLAIMED THEREON UNDER PUB.L. 89-516, INCIDENT TO A PERMANENT CHANGE OF OFFICIAL STATION.

THE MAJOR ITEM INVOLVED IS ONE FOR MISCELLANEOUS EXPENSES. IN SUCH CONNECTION YOUR LETTER AYS:

"IN ORDER TO ASSURE FAIR AND EQUITABLE TREATMENT, A POLICY WAS ESTABLISHED BY THE DEFENSE LOGISTICS SERVICES CENTER THAT MISCELLANEOUS EXPENSES WOULD BE ITEMIZED AND ITEMS WHICH DID NOT APPEAR REASONABLE WOULD BE SUPPORTED BY RECEIPTS OR OTHER EVIDENCE SUPPORTING THE CLAIM.'

SECTION 3.2 OF BUREAU OF THE BUDGET CIRCULAR NO. A-56, REVISED OCTOBER 12, 1966, IS AS FOLLOWS:

"A. A MISCELLANEOUS EXPENSE ALLOWANCE SHALL BE PAYABLE TO AN EMPLOYEE FOR WHOM A PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION IS AUTHORIZED OR APPROVED, REGARDLESS OF WHERE THE OLD OR NEW OFFICIAL STATIONS ARE LOCATED, SUBJECT TO THE FOLLOWING LIMITATIONS AND CONDITIONS AND PROVIDED THE AGREEMENT REQUIRED IN SUBSECTION 1.3C IS SIGNED.

"/1) ALLOWANCES IN THE FOLLOWING AMOUNTS MAY BE PAID WITHOUT BEING SUPPORTED BY RECEIPTS OR ITEMIZED STATEMENTS INDICATING THE NATURE OF COSTS OR EXPENSES BEING REIMBURSED:

"/A) $100 OR THE EQUIVALENT OF ONE WEEK'S BASIC COMPENSATION, WHICHEVER IS THE LESSER AMOUNT, FOR AN EMPLOYEE WITHOUT IMMEDIATE FAMILY.

"/B) $200 OR THE EQUIVALENT OF TWO WEEKS' BASIC COMPENSATION, WHICHEVER IS THE LESSER AMOUNT, FOR AN EMPLOYEE WITH IMMEDIATE FAMILY.

"/2) AN ALLOWANCE AMOUNT IN EXCESS OF THAT SPECIFIED IN SUBSECTION 3.2A (1), ABOVE, MAY BE AUTHORIZED OR APPROVED, IF SUPPORTED BY AN ACCEPTABLE STATEMENT OF FACTS OR PAID BILLS JUSTIFYING AMOUNT IN EXCESS OF THOSE SPECIFIED IN SUBSECTION 3.2A (1), ABOVE, PROVIDED THE AGGREGATE AMOUNT DOES NOT EXCEED THE EMPLOYEE'S BASIC SALARY RATE AT THE TIME THE EMPLOYEE REPORTED FOR DUTY--- FOR ONE WEEK IF THE EMPLOYEE IS WITHOUT IMMEDIATE FAMILY OR FOR TWO WEEKS IF THE EMPLOYEE HAS IMMEDIATE FAMILY. IN NO INSTANCE SHALL THE ALLOWANCE AMOUNT EXCEED THE MAXIMUM RATE AT THE TIME THE EMPLOYEE REPORTED FOR DUTY OF GRADE GS-13 IN THE GENERAL SCHEDULE OF THE CLASSIFICATION ACT OF 1949, AS AMENDED. IF AN AMOUNT IS CLAIMED IN EXCESS OF THAT AUTHORIZED TO BE PAID WITHOUT SUPPORTING DOCUMENTATION UNDER SUBSECTION 3.2A (1), ABOVE, THE ENTIRE AMOUNT CLAIMED MUST BE SUPPORTED BY PAID BILLS OR OTHER ACCEPTABLE EVIDENCE OF THE EXPENSES INCURRED.'

THE EFFECT OF THE QUORED REGULATION, CONSIDERED IN ITS ENTIRETY, IS THAT NEITHER THE SUBMISSION OF RECEIPTS NOR AN ITEMIZATION OF EXPENSES IS REQUIRED FOR ENTITLEMENT TO THE MINIMUM ALLOWANCES SPECIFIED IN SUCH REGULATION WHICH IN CASE OF THE EMPLOYEE HERE INVOLVED WOULD BE $200. ACCORDINGLY, THE EMPLOYEE IS ENTITLED TO THAT AMOUNT ($200) REGARDLESS OF HIS FAILURE TO SUBMIT RECEIPTS OR THE FACT THAT HE MAY HAVE EXPENDED SOME LESSER AMOUNT.

IN THE ABSENCE OF A SPECIFIC PROVISION IN THE REGULATIONS OF THE BUREAU OF THE BUDGET TO THE CONTRARY, THE ONLY APPRAISAL FEETHAT WE WOULD BE WARRANTED IN RECOGNIZING AS REIMBURSABLE INCIDENT TO THE PURCHASE OF A RESIDENCE AT A NEW STATION IS THE FEE CHARGED FOR THE APPRAISAL OF THE PARTICULAR RESIDENCE ACTUALLY PURCHASED. SINCE THE $35 APPRAISAL FEE RECLAIMED BY MR. PHILLIPS WAS FOR APPRAISING PROPERTY OTHER THAN THE RESIDENCE ACTUALLY PURCHASED AT HIS NEW STATION, IT IS NOT ALLOWABLE.

THE $6.50 ITEM FOR INSPECTING AND CHECKING THE SOFT WATER UNIT AT THE NEW RESIDENCE IS NOT ONE OF THE EXPENSES SPECIFICALLY ENUMERATED IN THE REGULATION AS BEING REIMBURSABLE. MOREOVER, IT DOES NOT APPEAR THAT THE INCURRING OF SUCH EXPENSE WAS REQUIRED AS A CONDITION TO THE PURCHASE OF SUCH RESIDENCE OR TO SECURING FINANCING FOR THE PURCHASE OF SUCH RESIDENCE. THEREFORE, IT DOES NOT CONSTITUTE AN EXPENSE THAT IS REIMBURSABLE UNDER SECTION 4.1 OF THE BUREAU OF THE BUDGET CIRCULAR NO. A- 56.

ACTION UPON THE VOUCHER, WHICH IS RETURNED HEREWITH, SHOULD BE TAKEN IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE FOREGOING.