B-16336, MAY 14, 1941, 20 COMP. GEN. 768

B-16336: May 14, 1941

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UNIFORM GRATUITY - NAVAL RESERVE ACT OF 1938 THE NAVAL RESERVE ACT OF 1938 LEAVES TO ADMINISTRATIVE DISCRETION THE AMOUNT AND KIND OF UNIFORM AND EXTENT TO WHICH IT SHALL BE WORN SO THAT THE PRESENT REQUIREMENT THAT THE UNIFORM ALLOWANCE PROVIDED BY SECTION 302 OF THE ACT SHALL BE PAYABLE TO NAVAL RESERVE OFFICERS UPON FIRST REPORTING FOR ACTIVE DUTY ONLY WHEN UNIFORMS "ARE REQUIRED TO BE WORN DAILY" MAY BE CHANGED TO AUTHORIZE PAYMENT OF THE ALLOWANCE TO OFFICERS "AT LOCATIONS WHERE THEY ARE REQUIRED TO POSSESS UNIFORMS AND WEAR THEM OCCASIONALLY.'. WITH RESPECT TO NAVAL RESERVE OFFICERS' RIGHT TO THE $100 UNIFORM ALLOWANCE UPON FIRST REPORTING FOR ACTIVE DUTY OR TRAINING DUTY WITH PAY "AT A LOCATION WHERE UNIFORMS ARE REQUIRED TO BE WORN.'.

B-16336, MAY 14, 1941, 20 COMP. GEN. 768

UNIFORM GRATUITY - NAVAL RESERVE ACT OF 1938 THE NAVAL RESERVE ACT OF 1938 LEAVES TO ADMINISTRATIVE DISCRETION THE AMOUNT AND KIND OF UNIFORM AND EXTENT TO WHICH IT SHALL BE WORN SO THAT THE PRESENT REQUIREMENT THAT THE UNIFORM ALLOWANCE PROVIDED BY SECTION 302 OF THE ACT SHALL BE PAYABLE TO NAVAL RESERVE OFFICERS UPON FIRST REPORTING FOR ACTIVE DUTY ONLY WHEN UNIFORMS "ARE REQUIRED TO BE WORN DAILY" MAY BE CHANGED TO AUTHORIZE PAYMENT OF THE ALLOWANCE TO OFFICERS "AT LOCATIONS WHERE THEY ARE REQUIRED TO POSSESS UNIFORMS AND WEAR THEM OCCASIONALLY.'

ASSISTANT COMPTROLLER GENERAL ELLIOTT TO THE SECRETARY OF THE NAVY, MAY 14, 1941:

THERE HAS BEEN RECEIVED YOUR LETTER OF APRIL 18, 1941, REQUESTING DECISION ON QUESTION PRESENTED IN LETTER OF THE BUREAU OF SUPPLIES AND ACCOUNTS AS TO THE REQUIREMENT OF SECTION 302 OF THE NAVAL RESERVE ACT OF 1938, 52 STAT. 1180, WITH RESPECT TO NAVAL RESERVE OFFICERS' RIGHT TO THE $100 UNIFORM ALLOWANCE UPON FIRST REPORTING FOR ACTIVE DUTY OR TRAINING DUTY WITH PAY "AT A LOCATION WHERE UNIFORMS ARE REQUIRED TO BE WORN.' THE LETTER OF THE BUREAU OF SUPPLIES AND ACCOUNTS REFERS TO BASIC LETTER OF THE BUREAU OF NAVIGATION IN PART AS FOLLOWS:

1. REFERENCE (A) IS QUOTED IN PART AS FOLLOWS:" IN TIME OF PEACE, UPON FIRST REPORTING FOR ACTIVE OR TRAINING DUTY WITH PAY AFTER ENACTMENT HEREOF, AT A LOCATION WHERE UNIFORMS ARE REQUIRED TO BE WORN. * * * A COMMISSIONED OR WARRANT OFFICER OF THE NAVAL RESERVE SHALL BE PAID A SUM NOT TO EXCEED $100 AS REIMBURSEMENT FOR THE PURCHASE OF THE REQUIRED UNIFORMS.'

2. THE ABOVE REFERENCE HAS BEEN INTERPRETED TO MEAN THAT AN OFFICER ON ACTIVE DUTY, WITH PAY, WHO MAY BE REQUIRED TO WEAR A UNIFORM ONLY OCCASIONALLY IS NOT ENTITLED TO THE UNIFORM GRATUITY. THE REQUIREMENT, RATHER, IS THAT AN OFFICER MUST REPORT AT A LOCATION WHERE UNIFORMS ARE REQUIRED TO BE WORN DAILY.

3. DURING THE PRESENT NATIONAL EMERGENCY, WHEN AN INCREASING NUMBER OF NAVAL RESERVE OFFICERS ARE NOW ON ACTIVE DUTY, WHERE THE BEST INTERESTS OF THE SERVICE REQUIRE THE TRANSFER OF OFFICERS FROM ONE LOCATION TO ANOTHER AND WHERE THE WORK LOAD OF THE ISSUE OF UNIFORM GRATUITIES IS CONSIDERABLE, IT IS FELT THAT JUSTICE WOULD OBTAIN WITH BENEFIT TO MORALE ON THE PART OF THE OFFICERS CONCERNED, AND THAT THE WORK COULD BE MORE EXPEDITIOUSLY HANDLED IF THE $100 UNIFORM GRATUITY COULD BE ISSUED TO OFFICERS AT LOCATIONS WHERE THEY ARE REQUIRED TO POSSESS UNIFORMS AND WEAR THEM OCCASIONALLY.

THE QUESTION PRESENTED IS WHETHER OFFICERS OF THE NAVAL RESERVE UPON FIRST REPORTING FOR ACTIVE DUTY AT ACTIVITIES WHERE THEY ARE REQUIRED TO POSSESS UNIFORMS AND "WEAR THEM OCCASIONALLY" MAY BE PAID THE $100 UNIFORM ALLOWANCE IN ADDITION TO THE $150 UNIFORM ALLOWANCE TO WHICH THEY ARE ENTITLED UPON FIRST REPORTING FOR ACTIVE DUTY IN THE PRESENT NATIONAL EMERGENCY.

THE STATUTE DOES NOT PRESCRIBE THE KIND OR QUANTITY OF UNIFORMS REQUIRED TO BE WORN AT SUCH PLACE OF ACTIVE DUTY NOR THE EXTENT TO WHICH IT SHALL BE WORN--- WHETHER DAILY OR OCCASIONALLY. THEREFORE, YOU ARE ADVISED THAT A CHANGE IN THE PRESENT REQUIREMENT THAT THE UNIFORM ALLOWANCE IS PAYABLE ONLY WHEN UNIFORMS "ARE REQUIRED TO BE WORN DAILY" SO AS TO AUTHORIZE PAYMENT OF THE $100 UNIFORM ALLOWANCE TO OFFICERS "AT LOCATIONS WHERE THEY ARE REQUIRED TO POSSESS UNIFORMS AND WEAR THEM OCCASIONALLY" IS WITHIN THE STATUTE.