B-161569, JUL. 17, 1967

B-161569: Jul 17, 1967

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TRANSPORTATION - DEPENDENTS - MILITARY PERSONNEL DECISION TO AIR FORCE OFFICER WHOSE CLAIM FOR TRAVEL EXPENSES VIA COMMERCIAL AIR CARRIER FOR TWO CHILDREN OVER 2 AND UNDER 5 YEARS OF AGE WAS FORWARDED BY A.F. MEMBER IS ENTITLED TO SETTLEMENT FOR EXPENSES ACTUALLY INCURRED NOT TO EXCEED GOVT. TRANSPORTATION COSTS SINCE ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICE MAY HAVE MISLED OFFICER CONCERNING NECESSITY TO OBTAIN TRANSPORTATION REQUEST AND GOVT. TO CAPTAIN WALTER HILLER: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR CLAIM IN THE AMOUNT OF $323 AS REIMBURSEMENT OF TRAVEL EXPENSES FOR TRAVEL PERFORMED BY YOUR DEPENDENTS (TWO CHILDREN OVER TWO YEARS OF AGE AND UNDER FIVE YEARS OF AGE) FROM MYRTLE BEACH AIR FORCE BASE. BY THOSE ORDERS YOU WERE DIRECTED TO PROCEED FROM YOUR DUTY STATION AT MYRTLE BEACH AIR FORCE BASE TO STEAD AIR FORCE BASE.

B-161569, JUL. 17, 1967

TRANSPORTATION - DEPENDENTS - MILITARY PERSONNEL DECISION TO AIR FORCE OFFICER WHOSE CLAIM FOR TRAVEL EXPENSES VIA COMMERCIAL AIR CARRIER FOR TWO CHILDREN OVER 2 AND UNDER 5 YEARS OF AGE WAS FORWARDED BY A.F. ACCOUNTING AND FINANCE OFFICE FOR CONSIDERATION AS MERITORIOUS CLAIM, 31 U.S.C. 236. MEMBER IS ENTITLED TO SETTLEMENT FOR EXPENSES ACTUALLY INCURRED NOT TO EXCEED GOVT. TRANSPORTATION COSTS SINCE ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICE MAY HAVE MISLED OFFICER CONCERNING NECESSITY TO OBTAIN TRANSPORTATION REQUEST AND GOVT. HAS OBLIGATION TO PROVIDE TRANSPORTATION FOR DEPENDENTS UPON PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION. HOWEVER, BALANCE CLAIMED DOES NOT CONTAIN ELEMENTS OF LEGAL LIABILITY OR EQUITY AS WOULD WARRANT REPORTING IT TO CONGRESS UNDER 31 U.S.C. 236.

TO CAPTAIN WALTER HILLER:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR CLAIM IN THE AMOUNT OF $323 AS REIMBURSEMENT OF TRAVEL EXPENSES FOR TRAVEL PERFORMED BY YOUR DEPENDENTS (TWO CHILDREN OVER TWO YEARS OF AGE AND UNDER FIVE YEARS OF AGE) FROM MYRTLE BEACH AIR FORCE BASE, SOUTH CAROLINA, TO TRAVIS AIR FORCE BASE, CALIFORNIA, INCIDENT TO SPECIAL ORDERS A-519 DATED JUNE 2, 1964. BY THOSE ORDERS YOU WERE DIRECTED TO PROCEED FROM YOUR DUTY STATION AT MYRTLE BEACH AIR FORCE BASE TO STEAD AIR FORCE BASE, NEVADA, FOR TEMPORARY DUTY FOR A PERIOD OF APPROXIMATELY 21 DAYS AND UPON COMPLETION OF TEMPORARY DUTY YOU WERE TO REPORT TO TRAVIS AIR FORCE BASE FOR FURTHER TRANSPORTATION TO YOUR NEW DUTY STATION OVERSEAS. THE ORDERS AUTHORIZED CONCURRENT TRAVEL OF YOUR DEPENDENTS TO YOUR OVERSEAS DUTY STATION.

IT APPEARS FROM YOUR STATEMENTS THAT YOU WERE REQUIRED TO CLEAR YOUR GOVERNMENT QUARTERS AT YOUR OLD DUTY STATION IN MINIMUM TIME BECAUSE OF A CHANGE IN YOUR ASSIGNMENT AND THAT YOU ATTEMPTED TO GET A TRANSPORTATION REQUEST ON A FRIDAY FOR YOUR DEPENDENTS TO FLY TO MINNEAPOLIS, MINNESOTA. YOU SAY YOU WERE ADVISED THE ADMINISTRATIVE SUPERVISOR WAS BUSY BUT COULD ACCOMMODATE YOU THE FOLLOWING MONDAY MORNING. SINCE YOUR DEPENDENTS (WIFE AND FOUR CHILDREN) WERE LEAVING ON CIVILIAN AIR CARRIER THE NEXT MORNING, YOU STATE THAT YOU WERE ADVISED TO HAVE THEM TRAVEL AT PERSONAL EXPENSE AND YOU WERE ASSURED OF REIMBURSEMENT AT YOUR NEXT DUTY STATION. PAYMENT OF THE CLAIM FOR TWO CHILDREN OVER TWO AND UNDER FIVE YEARS OF AGE WAS NOT MADE BY THE AIR FORCE ACCOUNTING AND FINANCE OFFICER FOR THE REASON THAT NEITHER OF YOUR CHILDREN WERE OF THE REQUIRED AGE TO ENTITLE THEM TO A MONETARY ALLOWANCE IN LIEU OF TRANSPORTATION.

YOUR CLAIM WAS FORWARDED TO OUR OFFICE BY HEADQUARTERS, AIR FORCE ACCOUNTING AND FINANCE CENTER, UNITED STATES AIR FORCE, DENVER, COLORADO, WITH THE REQUEST THAT WE CONSIDER IT AS A MERITORIOUS CLAIM UNDER THE ACT OF APRIL 10, 1928, CH. 334, 45 STAT. 413, 31 U.S.C. 236.

PARAGRAPH M7002-1 (A), JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS (CHANGE 136, APRIL 1, 1964), IN EFFECT AT THE TIME, PROVIDES THAT TRANSPORTATION MAY BE FURNISHED TO DEPENDENTS OF A MEMBER, REGARDLESS OF THE NUMBER OF DEPENDENTS, UPON THE PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION OF SUCH MEMBER, FOR TRAVEL FROM HIS OLD TO HIS NEW PERMANENT STATION OR BETWEEN OTHER POINTS OTHERWISE AUTHORIZED IN THESE REGULATIONS. PARAGRAPH M7003 OF THE REGULATIONS PROVIDES THAT A MEMBER WHO ELECTS TO TRANSPORT HIS DEPENDENTS AT HIS OWN EXPENSE IS ENTITLED TO A MONETARY ALLOWANCE AT THE RATES SPECIFIED THEREIN FOR ALL TRAVEL PERFORMED WITHIN THE UNITED STATES REGARDLESS OF THE MODE OF TRANSPORTATION, PROVIDED THAT THE MAXIMUM REIMBURSEMENT PAYABLE FOR ALL DEPENDENTS SHALL NOT EXCEED 18 CENTS PER MILE COMPUTED ON THE BASIS OF 6 CENTS PER MILE FOR EACH DEPENDENT 12 YEARS OF AGE OR OVER NOT TO EXCEED TWO SUCH DEPENDENTS; 3 CENTS PER MILE FOR EACH ADDITIONAL DEPENDENT 12 YEARS OF AGE OR OVER; AND 3 CENTS PER MILE FOR EACH DEPENDENT 5 YEARS OF AGE AND OVER, BUT UNDER 12 YEARS OF AGE.

PRESUMABLY YOU WERE PAID ON A MILEAGE BASIS FOR TRAVEL PERFORMED BY YOUR WIFE AND SON. THE REGULATIONS DO NOT AUTHORIZE MONETARY ALLOWANCE FOR DEPENDENTS UNDER 5 YEARS OF AGE. HENCE, NO AUTHORITY EXISTS TO REIMBURSE YOU FOR THE EXPENSES OF THEIR TRAVEL IN THE FORM OF A MONETARY ALLOWANCE IN LIEU OF TRANSPORTATION AND REIMBURSEMENT ON AN ACTUAL EXPENSE BASIS APPEARS TO BE RESTRICTED BY PARAGRAPH M7002-2 (A) (EXCEPT IN CASES INVOLVING TRANSPORTATION EXPENSES OF $15 OR LESS) TO THOSE CASES WHERE TRANSPORTATION REQUESTS ARE NOT AVAILABLE TO THE TRAVELER.

ALSO, PARAGRAPH 20706, AIR FORCE MANUAL 177-103, PROVIDES THAT REIMBURSEMENT FOR ACTUAL COST OF COMMERCIAL TRANSPORTATION FOR DEPENDENTS MUST BE SUPPORTED BY A CERTIFICATE FROM THE COMMANDER (OR HIS DESIGNEE) AT THE OLD PERMANENT DUTY STATION INDICATING THAT TRANSPORTATION REQUESTS WERE NOT AVAILABLE FOR DEPENDENTS WHEN THE TRAVEL COMMENCED. IT APPEARS FROM THE RECORD THAT SUCH CERTIFICATE OF NONAVAILABILITY PROPERLY COULD NOT HAVE BEEN FURNISHED TO YOU SINCE TRANSPORTATION REQUESTS FOR YOUR DEPENDENTS WOULD HAVE BEEN AVAILABLE TO YOU THE FOLLOWING MONDAY MORNING. HOWEVER, IN VIEW OF THE INFORMATION YOU RECEIVED FROM THE ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICE WHICH MAY HAVE MISLED YOU CONCERNING THE NECESSITY TO OBTAIN A TRANSPORTATION REQUEST AND RECOGNIZING THE GOVERNMENT'S OBLIGATION GENERALLY TO PROVIDE THE MEANS NECESSARY TO OBTAIN TRANSPORTATION FOR DEPENDENTS UPON PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION, WE WILL CONSIDER THAT YOU ARE ENTITLED TO REIMBURSEMENT FOR THE EXPENSES ACTUALLY INCURRED FOR THE TRANSPORTATION OF YOUR DEPENDENTS (WIFE AND THREE CHILDREN OVER TWO YEARS OF AGE) FROM MYRTLE BEACH AIR FORCE BASE, SOUTH CAROLINA, TO TRAVIS AIR FORCE BASE, CALIFORNIA, NOT TO EXCEED THE COST TO THE GOVERNMENT HAD A TRANSPORTATION REQUEST FOR THEIR TRAVEL BEEN OBTAINED UNDER PRESCRIBED PROCEDURES.

AFTER ASCERTAINING THE AMOUNT THAT HAS BEEN PAID TO YOU FOR THE TRAVEL OF YOUR WIFE AND SON, A SETTLEMENT WILL ISSUE ON THIS BASIS LESS THE AMOUNT PREVIOUSLY PAID TO YOU FOR THE TRAVEL OF YOUR WIFE AND SON.

WITH REGARD TO THE RECOMMENDATION OF THE AIR FORCE THAT THE CLAIM BE CONSIDERED UNDER THE MERITORIOUS CLAIMS ACT OF 1928, 31 U.S.C. 236, THE AMOUNT AUTHORIZED HEREIN REPRESENTS THE MAXIMUM AMOUNT PAYABLE UNDER THE APPLICABLE LAWS AND REGULATIONS AND THE BALANCE CLAIMED ON THE BASIS OF COMMERCIAL FARE FOR YOUR DEPENDENTS DOES NOT CONTAIN SUCH ELEMENTS OF LEGAL LIABILITY OR EQUITY AS WOULD WARRANT THE REPORTING OF IT TO THE CONGRESS AS A MERITORIOUS CLAIM.