B-163738, APR. 8, 1969

B-163738: Apr 8, 1969

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USAF: FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER DATED JANUARY 17. YOU WERE REASSIGNED FROM STATION DETACHMENT LL 24 (LIBYA) TO A NEW PERMANENT DUTY STATION. WERE AMENDED TO INCLUDE "SHIPMENT OF PRIVATELY- OWNED VEHICLE IS AUTHORIZED.'. IN A STATEMENT OF FACTS SUPPORTING YOUR CLAIM IT IS STATED THAT YOU TRIED TO MAKE ARRANGEMENTS WITH THE U.S. YOU WERE INFORMED THAT NO SHIPS WERE AVAILABLE. REGISTRY WERE AVAILABLE FOR CROSSING FROM LIBYA TO GREECE. IT IS STATED THAT YOU LATER LEARNED AN ITALIAN VESSEL WAS STARTING TO MAKE TRIPOLI A PORT OF CALL AND WOULD SAIL AUGUST 14. YOU WERE ADVISED THAT THE SHIPPING AGENTS OF THE ITALIAN VESSEL INSISTED ON PAYMENT FOR YOUR AUTOMOBILE OR THEY WOULD CANCEL THE SPACE.

B-163738, APR. 8, 1969

TO LIEUTENANT COLONEL LOUIS F. DE FELICE, USAF:

FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER DATED JANUARY 17, 1969, WITH ENCLOSURE, REQUESTING RECONSIDERATION OF SETTLEMENT DATED JUNE 24, 1968, WHICH DISALLOWED YOUR CLAIM FOR REIMBURSEMENT OF THE EXPENSE INCURRED FOR THE SHIPMENT OF YOUR PRIVATELY OWNED VEHICLE FROM WHEELUS AIR BASE, LIBYA, TO ATHENS, GREECE.

BY SPECIAL ORDER NO. AA-2206 DATED JUNE 15, 1967, YOU WERE REASSIGNED FROM STATION DETACHMENT LL 24 (LIBYA) TO A NEW PERMANENT DUTY STATION, DETACHMENT LF 24 (ATHENS, GREECE). BY ORDERS DATED AUGUST 4, 1967, THE ORDERS OF JUNE 15, 1967, WERE AMENDED TO INCLUDE "SHIPMENT OF PRIVATELY- OWNED VEHICLE IS AUTHORIZED.'

IN A STATEMENT OF FACTS SUPPORTING YOUR CLAIM IT IS STATED THAT YOU TRIED TO MAKE ARRANGEMENTS WITH THE U.S. ARMY TRANSPORTATION TERMINAL UNIT (TRIPOLI) TO SHIP YOUR CAR TO PIRAEUS, BUT YOU WERE INFORMED THAT NO SHIPS WERE AVAILABLE, AND THAT NO SHIPS OF U.S. REGISTRY WERE AVAILABLE FOR CROSSING FROM LIBYA TO GREECE. FURTHER, IT IS STATED THAT YOU LATER LEARNED AN ITALIAN VESSEL WAS STARTING TO MAKE TRIPOLI A PORT OF CALL AND WOULD SAIL AUGUST 14, 1967, AND THAT YOU MADE RESERVATIONS FOR YOUR FAMILY AND YOUR AUTOMOBILE, EXPECTING A GOVERNMENT BILL OF LADING FOR THE AUTOMOBILE. THE TRANSPORTATION OFFICER HOWEVER COULD NOT ISSUE ONE FOR YOUR AUTOMOBILE FOR THE REASON THAT YOUR ORDERS OF JUNE 15, 1967, DID NOT AUTHORIZE SHIPMENT OF PRIVATELY OWNED VEHICLE. YOU IMMEDIATELY REQUESTED AN AMENDMENT TO YOUR ORDERS AUTHORIZING SHIPMENT OF THE VEHICLE, BUT ON AUGUST 8, 1967, YOU WERE ADVISED THAT THE SHIPPING AGENTS OF THE ITALIAN VESSEL INSISTED ON PAYMENT FOR YOUR AUTOMOBILE OR THEY WOULD CANCEL THE SPACE. IN THOSE CIRCUMSTANCES YOU PAID FOR THE SHIPPING COSTS OF THE AUTOMOBILE. YOU STATED THAT THE AMENDING ORDERS OF AUGUST 4, 1967, WERE RECEIVED ON AUGUST 11, 1967, BUT THAT IT WAS TOO LATE TO PREPARE A GOVERNMENT BILL OF LADING IN TIME FOR THE SCHEDULED DEPARTURE OF THE SHIP SINCE ALL ARRANGEMENTS HAD TO BE MADE THROUGH NORMAL COMMAND CHANNELS.

THE PERTINENT STATUTORY AUTHORITY FOR TRANSOCEANIC SHIPMENT AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE OF PRIVATELY OWNED VEHICLES OF MEMBERS OF THE ARMED FORCES IS CONTAINED IN 10 U.S.C. 2634 AND PROVIDES IN MATERIAL PART AS FOLLOWS:

"SEC. 2634 MOTOR VEHICLES; FOR MEMBERS ON CHANGE OF PERMANENT STATION "/A) WHEN A MEMBER OF AN ARMED FORCE IS ORDERED TO MAKE A CHANGE OF PERMANENT STATION, ONE MOTOR VEHICLE OWNED BY HIM AND FOR HIS PERSONAL USE * * * MAY * * * BE TRANSPORTED, AT THE EXPENSE OF THE UNITED STATES, TO HIS NEW STATION * * * "/1) ON A VESSEL OWNED, LEASED, OR CHARTERED BY THE UNITED STATES; "/2) BY PRIVATELY OWNED AMERICAN SHIPPING SERVICES; OR "/3) BY FOREIGN-FLAG SHIPPING SERVICES IF SHIPPING SERVICES DESCRIBED IN CLAUSES (1) AND (2) ARE NOT REASONABLY AVAILABLE.'

THE STATUTE IS NOT SELF-EXECUTING, BUT REQUIRES THAT IMPLEMENTING REGULATIONS BE ISSUED BY THE SECRETARIES OF THE SERVICES CONCERNED. WHILE THE STATUTE AND REGULATIONS PROVIDE FOR TRANSOCEANIC SHIPMENT AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE OF PRIVATELY OWNED VEHICLES ON COMMERCIAL AMERICAN VESSELS, OR IN THEIR ABSENCE, ON FOREIGN FLAG VESSELS, THEY CONTEMPLATE THAT ARRANGEMENTS FOR SUCH SHIPMENT WILL BE MADE BY THE APPROPRIATE SHIPPING OFFICER. IN THIS RESPECT, AIR FORCE MANUAL 75-4, WHICH IN CHAPTER 8 PRESCRIBES THE POLICIES AND PROCEDURES FOR OVERSEAS SHIPMENT OF PRIVATELY OWNED AUTOMOBILES, SPECIFICALLY PROVIDES (PARAGRAPH 5804D) THAT REIMBURSEMENT FOR SHIPMENT OF A PRIVATELY OWNED VEHICLE AT PERSONAL EXPENSE IS NOT AUTHORIZED. A SIMILAR PROVISION IS CONTAINED IN PARAGRAPH M11002-1 OF THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS.

THE GOVERNING LAW AND REGULATIONS CONTAIN NO PROVISION FOR REIMBURSING MILITARY MEMBERS WHO EFFECT SHIPMENT OF THEIR PRIVATELY OWNED AUTOMOBILES OF THEIR OWN VOLITION AND ON THEIR OWN RESPONSIBILITY, REGARDLESS OF THE PARTICULAR CIRCUMSTANCES INVOLVED. CONSEQUENTLY, IT HAS BEEN HELD THAT SUCH LAW AND REGULATIONS CONTEMPLATE THAT THE SHIPMENT OF A MEMBER'S PRIVATELY OWNED VEHICLE TO AN OVERSEAS PORT WILL BE ARRANGED FOR AND EFFECTED BY AN APPROPRIATE TRANSPORTATION OFFICER AND THAT NO AUTHORITY EXISTS FOR THE REIMBURSEMENT OF EXPENSES INCURRED BY THE MEMBER INCIDENT TO A PERSONALLY ARRANGED SHIPMENT. SEE 45 COMP. GEN. 39, COPY HEREWITH.

ACCORDINGLY, SINCE YOU SHIPPED YOUR AUTOMOBILE YOURSELF AT PERSONAL EXPENSE, REIMBURSEMENT IS NOT AUTHORIZED AND THE SETTLEMENT OF JUNE 24, 1968, IS SUSTAINED.