B-163797, JUN. 12, 1968

B-163797: Jun 12, 1968

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SAN NICOLAS: FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER DATED MARCH 4. AUTHORITY FOR THE ORDERS WAS STATED TO BE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY LETTER DATED JUNE 20. PURPORTS TO RETROACTIVELY AMEND SPECIAL ORDERS NO. 139 TO ADD THAT YOUR FAMILY WAS AUTHORIZED TO TRAVEL BY COMMERCIAL TRANSPORTATION AT YOUR EXPENSE TO BE REIMBURSED UPON COMPLETION OF TRAVEL. SHOWS TRAVEL WAS PERFORMED JULY 28. CLAIM IS FOR REIMBURSEMENT OF THE COST OF COMMERCIAL AIR TRANSPORTATION FOR YOUR DEPENDENTS FROM ANCHORAGE TO GUAM ON JULY 7. WAS ADMINISTRATIVELY DENIED FOR THE REASON THAT THE RECORD DID NOT SHOW THAT YOUR DEPENDENTS' TRAVEL TO GUAM WAS APPROVED BY AN APPROPRIATE OFFICIAL AS REQUIRED BY PARAGRAPH M7005-3. YOUR CLAIM WAS SUBSEQUENTLY TRANSMITTED TO OUR CLAIMS DIVISION FOR SETTLEMENT WITH A STATEMENT THAT PAYMENT WAS NOT RECOMMENDED BECAUSE TRAVEL OF DEPENDENTS WAS PERFORMED PRIOR TO ORDERS.

B-163797, JUN. 12, 1968

TO JESUS M. SAN NICOLAS:

FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER DATED MARCH 4, 1968, REQUESTING RECONSIDERATION OF THE SETTLEMENT DATED JANUARY 30, 1968, WHICH DISALLOWED YOUR CLAIM FOR REIMBURSEMENT OF EXPENSES INCURRED FOR COMMERCIAL AIR TRANSPORTATION OF YOUR DEPENDENTS FROM ANCHORAGE, ALASKA, TO AGANA, GUAM, IN JULY 1966.

PARAGRAPH 3, SPECIAL ORDERS NO. 139, HEADQUARTERS, U.S. ARMY, ALASKA SUPPORT COMMAND, DATED JULY 27, 1966, TRANSFERRED YOU TO CONTINENTAL UNITED STATES FOR FURTHER TRANSFER TO VIETNAM. SPECIAL INSTRUCTIONS PROVIDED AUTHORIZATION FOR SHIPMENT OF YOUR HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS AND FOR THE CONCURRENT TRAVEL OF YOUR DEPENDENTS TO AGANA, GUAM, M.I. AUTHORITY FOR THE ORDERS WAS STATED TO BE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY LETTER DATED JUNE 20, 1966. PARAGRAPH 1, SPECIAL ORDERS NO. 169, DATED SEPTEMBER 12, 1966, PURPORTS TO RETROACTIVELY AMEND SPECIAL ORDERS NO. 139 TO ADD THAT YOUR FAMILY WAS AUTHORIZED TO TRAVEL BY COMMERCIAL TRANSPORTATION AT YOUR EXPENSE TO BE REIMBURSED UPON COMPLETION OF TRAVEL.

A VOUCHER DATED DECEMBER 30, 1966, STATES THAT YOUR DEPENDENTS TRAVELED FROM FORT RICHARDSON, ALASKA, TO AGANA, GUAM, DURING THE PERIOD FROM JULY 19 TO 23, 1966. A TRAVEL ITINERARY ON THE REVERSE SIDE OF THE VOUCHER, HOWEVER, SHOWS TRAVEL WAS PERFORMED JULY 28, 1966, FROM FORT RICHARDSON, ALASKA, TO INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT, ANCHORAGE, ALASKA, BY PRIVATE AUTOMOBILE, AND BY COMMERCIAL AIR TOAGANA, GUAM, VIA SEATTLE, WASHINGTON, AND SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA, ARRIVING JULY 29, 1966. THE VOUCHER COVERS PAYMENT FOR YOUR DEPENDENTS' TRAVEL FROM FORT RICHARDSON, ALASKA, TO ANCHORAGE, ALASKA, PLUS DISLOCATION ALLOWANCE FOR RELOCATION OF YOUR HOUSEHOLD.

THE SUPPLEMENTAL CLAIM VOUCHER WHICH YOU SUBMITTED ON MARCH 13, 1967, LISTS THE SAME ITINERARY AND PERIOD OF TRAVEL FOR YOUR DEPENDENTS AS SHOWN ON THE ABOVE-MENTIONED VOUCHER, BUT CLAIM IS FOR REIMBURSEMENT OF THE COST OF COMMERCIAL AIR TRANSPORTATION FOR YOUR DEPENDENTS FROM ANCHORAGE TO GUAM ON JULY 7, 1966. THE RETAINED PORTION OF EACH OF THE FLIGHT TICKETS ISSUED BY NORTHWESTERN AIRLINES, INC., FOR SUCH TRAVEL SHOWS A STAMPED DATE OF PURCHASE OF JUNE 28, 1966 (WITH JULY WRITTEN OVER SUCH DATE), FOR FLIGHTS ON JULY 7, 1966. THUS IT WOULD APPEAR THAT YOUR DEPENDENTS ACTUALLY DEPARTED FROM YOUR STATION IN ALASKA ON THE FLIGHT DATE LISTED.

THE SUPPLEMENTAL CLAIM FOR REIMBURSEMENT OF YOUR DEPENDENTS' TRAVEL EXPENSES FOR TRAVEL FROM ANCHORAGE TO AGANA, GUAM, WAS ADMINISTRATIVELY DENIED FOR THE REASON THAT THE RECORD DID NOT SHOW THAT YOUR DEPENDENTS' TRAVEL TO GUAM WAS APPROVED BY AN APPROPRIATE OFFICIAL AS REQUIRED BY PARAGRAPH M7005-3, JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS. YOUR CLAIM WAS SUBSEQUENTLY TRANSMITTED TO OUR CLAIMS DIVISION FOR SETTLEMENT WITH A STATEMENT THAT PAYMENT WAS NOT RECOMMENDED BECAUSE TRAVEL OF DEPENDENTS WAS PERFORMED PRIOR TO ORDERS, AND, ALSO, BECAUSE APPROVAL OF THE DEPENDENTS' MOVE TO GUAM WAS NOT OBTAINED PRIOR TO THEIR TRAVEL.

BY SETTLEMENT DATED JANUARY 30, 1968, YOUR CLAIM WAS DISALLOWED BECAUSE YOUR DEPENDENTS TRAVELED TO GUAM PRIOR TO THE ORDERS OF JULY 27, 1966, AND IN THE ABSENCE OF A STATEMENT, AS REQUIRED BY PARAGRAPH M7003-4, JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS, TO THE EFFECT THAT YOU WERE ADVISED PRIOR TO THE ISSUANCE OF THE ORDERS OF JULY 27, 1966, THAT SUCH ORDERS DIRECTING A PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION WOULD ISSUE, THERE IS NO AUTHORITY FOR REIMBURSEMENT AS CLAIMED.

IN YOUR LETTER OF MARCH 4, 1968, YOU SAY THAT YOU HAD TO SEND YOUR WIFE HOME BEFORE YOUR TRAVEL BECAUSE SHE WAS PREGNANT AND YOU WERE SCHEDULED TO GO TO VIETNAM. YOU STATED FURTHER THAT YOU RECEIVED PERMISSION FOR YOUR FAMILY'S TRAVEL, REFERRING TO THE PROVISIONS OF SPECIAL ORDERS NOS. 139 AND 169, AND TO THE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY LETTER DATED JUNE 20, 1966, AS MENTIONED IN THOSE ORDERS. YOU ALSO ENCLOSED A CERTIFICATE FROM THE USAF HOSPITAL, ELMENDORF, ALASKA, DATED JULY 6, 1966, TO THE EFFECT THAT YOUR WIFE WAS ATTENDING THE PRENATAL CLINIC THERE AND THE ESTIMATED DATE OF HER CONFINEMENT WAS AUGUST 23, 1966. THE CERTIFICATE STATED FURTHER THAT SHE COULD SAFELY TRAVEL 42 DAYS BEFORE OR AFTER THAT DATE.

THE TRANSPORTATION OF DEPENDENTS OF MEMBERS OF THE UNIFORMED SERVICES AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE UPON PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION IS GOVERNED BY THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS PROMULGATED PURSUANT TO 37 U.S.C. 406. PARAGRAPHS M7000-8 AND M7003-4 OF THE REGULATIONS PROVIDE THAT REIMBURSEMENT IS NOT AUTHORIZED FOR ANY TRAVEL OF DEPENDENTS WHEN THEY DEPART FROM THE OLD STATION PRIOR TO ISSUANCE OF PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION ORDERS, UNLESS THE VOUCHER IS SUPPORTED BY A CERTIFICATE OF THE COMMANDING OFFICER OR HIS DESIGNATED REPRESENTATIVE OF THE HEADQUARTERS ISSUING THE ORDERS, THAT THE MEMBER WAS ADVISED PRIOR TO THEIR ISSUANCE THAT SUCH ORDERS WOULD BE ISSUED. THE PLAIN TERMS OF THAT PROVISION LIMIT REIMBURSEMENT FOR TRANSPORTATION OF DEPENDENTS PRIOR TO THE ISSUANCE OF ORDERS TO THOSE SITUATIONS WHERE THE VOUCHER IS SUPPORTED BY THE PRESCRIBED CERTIFICATE BY THE COMMANDING OFFICER.

ALSO, IN INSTANCES WHERE A MEMBER IS ORDERED TO A RESTRICTED AREA, TRANSPORTATION FOR HIS DEPENDENTS TO A DESIGNATED LOCATION IN A TERRITORY OR POSSESSION OF THE UNITED STATES IS AUTHORIZED IF APPROVED BY THE SECRETARY OF THE SERVICE CONCERNED, OR HIS DESIGNATED REPRESENTATIVE, AS REQUIRED BY PARAGRAPH M7005-3, JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS. IMPLEMENTING ARMY REGULATIONS DELEGATE THIS AUTHORITY TO THE INSTALLATION COMMANDER AT THE MEMBER'S OLD DUTY STATION. OTHER APPLICABLE REGULATIONS PROVIDE THAT FOR TRANSOCEANIC TRANSPORTATION TO AN AUTHORIZED DESTINATION, WHERE A DEPENDENT IS AUTHORIZED AS DISTINGUISHED FROM DIRECTED TO USE AVAILABLE GOVERNMENT TRANSPORTATION, BUT PERFORMS TRAVEL BY COMMERCIAL MEANS, THE MEMBER IS ENTITLED TO SUCH TRAVEL REIMBURSEMENT NOT TO EXCEED THE COST TO THE GOVERNMENT HAD THE TRANSPORTATION BEEN PERFORMED BY THE AVAILABLE GOVERNMENT OR GOVERNMENT-PROCURED FACILITIES.

AS STATED ABOVE, THE VOUCHER MAKING PAYMENT FOR THE TRAVEL OF YOUR DEPENDENTS FROM FORT RICHARDSON TO ANCHORAGE, ALASKA, SHOWS THAT THEIR TRAVEL WAS PERFORMED TO AGANA, GUAM, DURING THE PERIOD FROM JULY 19 TO 23, 1966, BUT THE RECORD NOW INDICATES THAT THE TRAVEL COMMENCED ON JULY 7, 1966, AUTHORIZING THE CONCURRENT TRAVEL OF YOUR DEPENDENTS TO AGANA, GUAM, APPEAR TO BE SUFFICIENT COMPLIANCE WITH THE REQUIREMENTS OF PARAGRAPH M7005-3, JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS, REFERRED TO ABOVE, IF THE TRAVEL OF YOUR DEPENDENTS PRIOR TO YOUR ORDERS WAS OTHERWISE AUTHORIZED. SINCE GOVERNMENT TRANSPORTATION WAS AVAILABLE TO GUAM, HOWEVER, REIMBURSEMENT FOR THE COST OF COMMERCIAL AIR WOULD BE LIMITED TO THE COST TO THE GOVERNMENT HAD SUCH GOVERNMENT TRANSPORTATION BEEN USED. THE RETROACTIVE AMENDMENT TO YOUR ORDERS OF JULY 27, 1966, BY THE ORDERS OF SEPTEMBER 12, 1966, IS WITHOUT EFFECT TO INCREASE YOUR RIGHTS IN THAT RESPECT.

NEITHER THE VOUCHER MAKING PAYMENT OF DISLOCATION ALLOWANCE NOR YOUR SUBSEQUENT CLAIM IS SUPPORTED BY A CERTIFICATE AS REQUIRED BY PARAGRAPH M7003-4, JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS, FOR THE TRAVEL OF YOUR DEPENDENTS IN ADVANCE OF THE ORDERS DATED JULY 27, 1966. IN THE ABSENCE OF SUCH CERTIFICATE BY THE COMMANDING OFFICER OR HIS DESIGNATED REPRESENTATIVE AT THE HEADQUARTERS THAT ISSUED THE ORDERS CERTIFYING THAT PRIOR TO THE TRAVEL OF YOUR DEPENDENTS YOU WERE ADVISED THAT SUCH ORDERS WOULD BE ISSUED, THERE IS NO AUTHORITY FOR THE PAYMENT OF YOUR CLAIM. FURTHERMORE, IN VIEW OF THE APPARENT DISCREPANCY IN THE RECORD AS TO THE DATES YOUR DEPENDENTS ACTUALLY TRAVELED TO AGANA, GUAM, A STATEMENT WOULD BE REQUIRED EXPLAINING THE DISCREPANCY AND SHOWING THE ACTUAL DATES SUCH TRAVEL WAS PERFORMED.

ACCORDINGLY, ON THE BASIS OF THE PRESENT RECORD, THE SETTLEMENT OF JANUARY 30, 1968, IS SUSTAINED.