B-164004, MAY 8, 1968

B-164004: May 8, 1968

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THE FORM WITH THE ENCLOSED VOUCHER WAS FORWARDED HERE BY LETTER OF THE DIRECTOR. WILLIAMS WAS GRANTED LEAVE WITHOUT PAY FOR 2 YEARS IN ORDER TO ACCEPT EMPLOYMENT WITH A PRIVATE CORPORATION FOR DUTY WITH THE IVORY COAST GOVERNMENT ON A PROJECT FINANCED BY THE AGENCY FOR INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT. DUE TO ORGANIZATIONAL CHANGES HE WAS ASSIGNED TO ATLANTA RATHER THAN SHREVEPORT UPON HIS RETURN TO DUTY. THE EMPLOYEE'S TRAVEL VOUCHER WAS SUBMITTED TO OUR CLAIMS DIVISION FOR DIRECT SETTLEMENT. THE CLAIM WAS DISALLOWED SINCE REIMBURSEMENT WAS NEITHER AUTHORIZED NOR APPROVED BY PROPER AUTHORITY. NEVERTHELESS YOU STATE THERE IS STILL DOUBT ABOUT CERTIFYING THE VOUCHER FOR PAYMENT SINCE THE PRIVATE EMPLOYMENT DID NOT QUALIFY MR.

B-164004, MAY 8, 1968

TO MR. BAXTER REED:

WE REFER TO YOUR FORM AD-42 OF FEBRUARY 5, 1968, REFERENCE R8-68 18, WITH ENCLOSED TRAVEL VOUCHER IN FAVOR OF ALVA B. WILLIAMS, COVERING CLAIM FOR TRAVELING EXPENSES (MILEAGE AND PER DIEM) AND TEMPORARY QUARTERS ALLOWANCE FROM JUNE 22 TO 29, 1967, INCIDENT TO HIS TRANSFER OF OFFICIAL STATION FROM SHREVEPORT, LOUISIANA, TO ATLANTA, GEORGIA. THE FORM WITH THE ENCLOSED VOUCHER WAS FORWARDED HERE BY LETTER OF THE DIRECTOR, DIVISION OF BUDGET AND FINANCE, FOREST SERVICE, DATED MARCH 28, 1968, REFERENCE 6570, REQUESTING OUR DECISION WHETHER THE VOUCHER COULD BE PAID.

MR. WILLIAMS WAS GRANTED LEAVE WITHOUT PAY FOR 2 YEARS IN ORDER TO ACCEPT EMPLOYMENT WITH A PRIVATE CORPORATION FOR DUTY WITH THE IVORY COAST GOVERNMENT ON A PROJECT FINANCED BY THE AGENCY FOR INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT. PRIOR TO THE EXPIRATION OF HIS LEAVE MR. WILLIAMS ADVISED THE FOREST SERVICE THAT HE WOULD RETURN TO DUTY BY JUNE 19, 1967. DUE TO ORGANIZATIONAL CHANGES HE WAS ASSIGNED TO ATLANTA RATHER THAN SHREVEPORT UPON HIS RETURN TO DUTY. BECAUSE OF DOUBT AS TO WHO SHOULD PAY THE TRAVEL AND TRANSPORTATION COSTS INCIDENT TO THE NEW ASSIGNMENT, THE EMPLOYEE'S TRAVEL VOUCHER WAS SUBMITTED TO OUR CLAIMS DIVISION FOR DIRECT SETTLEMENT. THE CLAIM WAS DISALLOWED SINCE REIMBURSEMENT WAS NEITHER AUTHORIZED NOR APPROVED BY PROPER AUTHORITY.

THE VOUCHER HAS NOW BEEN APPROVED BY THE DIRECTOR, SOUTHEASTERN AREA. NEVERTHELESS YOU STATE THERE IS STILL DOUBT ABOUT CERTIFYING THE VOUCHER FOR PAYMENT SINCE THE PRIVATE EMPLOYMENT DID NOT QUALIFY MR. WILLIAMS FOR FULL REEMPLOYMENT RIGHTS AS PRESCRIBED IN FEDERAL PERSONNEL MANUAL (FPM), CHAPTER 352, COVERING REEMPLOYMENT RIGHTS OF EMPLOYEES AFTER SERVICE WITH INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS, ETC., AND MR. WILLIAMS WAS NOT REEMPLOYED AT HIS FORMER STATION.

THE DIRECTOR, INTERNATIONAL FORESTRY STAFF, HAS STATED THAT IT IS TO THE ADVANTAGE OF THE FOREST SERVICE THAT SELECTED EMPLOYEES ACCEPT OFFERS TO IMPORTANT AND CHALLENGING WORK EXPERIENCES OVERSEAS SINCE THEY RETURN BETTER PREPARED TO ASSUME POSTS OF LEADERSHIP IN THE SERVICE, AND THAT UPON AN EMPLOYEE'S RETURN THE SERVICE IS SOMETIMES FORCED TO ASSIGN HIM TO A DIFFERENT FIELD UNIT. WE NOTE THAT MR. WILLIAMS HAD BEEN GRANTED LEAVE WITHOUT PAY DURING THE PERIOD IN QUESTION AND THUS WAS STILL ON THE ROLLS OF THE AGENCY. HE CAME BACK TO SHREVEPORT PRESUMABLY FOR THE PURPOSE OF MAKING ARRANGEMENTS FOR THE TRANSPORTATION OF HIS HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS TO ATLANTA WHERE HE HAD BEEN DIRECTED TO REPORT FOR DUTY. UNDER SUCH CIRCUMSTANCES THE DESIGNATION OF HIS DUTY STATION AS ATLANTA IS TO BE REGARDED AS A TRANSFER OF STATION.

WITH REGARD TO TRANSFERS WITHIN THE CONTINENTAL UNITED STATES, SUBSECTION 1.3 C (1), BUREAU OF THE BUDGET CIRCULAR NO. A-56, REVISED OCTOBER 12, 1966, PROVIDES THAT EXPENSES FOR TRAVEL, ETC., AND ALLOWANCES AS PROVIDED IN THE CIRCULAR SHALL NOT BE ALLOWED UNLESS AND UNTIL THE TRANSFERRED EMPLOYEE AGREES IN WRITING TO REMAIN IN THE SERVICE OF THE GOVERNMENT FOR 12 MONTHS FOLLOWING THE EFFECTIVE DATE OF TRANSFER, UNLESS SEPARATED FOR REASONS BEYOND HIS CONTROL AND ACCEPTABLE TO THE DEPARTMENT CONCERNED. SUBSECTION 2.5D (1) OF CIRCULAR NO. A-56 PROVIDES THAT ACTUAL SUBSISTENCE EXPENSES INCURRED BY A TRANSFERRED EMPLOYEE WHILE OCCUPYING TEMPORARY QUARTERS INCIDENT TO THE TRANSFER SHALL BE SUPPORTED AS PROVIDED IN SUBSECTION 6.12F OF THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS, WHICH STATES THAT RECEIPTS WILL BE REQUIRED AT LEAST FOR LODGING. THERE IS NO EVIDENCE THAT THE EMPLOYEE HAS SIGNED A WRITTEN AGREEMENT, AS REQUIRED BY CIRCULAR NO. A-56, OR HAS SUBMITTED RECEIPTS FOR LODGING. THEREFORE, THE CLAIM MAY NOT BE PAID ON THE BASIS OF THE PRESENT RECORD. HOWEVER, THE VOUCHER MAY BE CERTIFIED FOR PAYMENT WHEN THE EMPLOYEE SIGNS THE NECESSARY AGREEMENT AND SUBMITS RECEIPTS FOR LODGING.

ACTION ON THE VOUCHER, RETURNED HEREWITH, SHOULD BE TAKEN ACCORDINGLY.