B-164184, JUN. 21, 1968

B-164184: Jun 21, 1968

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WE ARE ADDRESSING OUR DECISION TO YOU. FOR THE PURPOSE OF SUCH DUTY HE WAS ASSIGNED A GOVERNMENT-OWNED VEHICLE. FOR THE PURPOSE OF STORING THE VEHICLE EITHER AT THE GSA MOTOR POOL OR AT THE AIRPORT IN LOUISVILLE WHILE HE WAS AWAY FOR THE WEEKEND. THE ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICE DETERMINED THAT THE EMPLOYEE'S TRAVEL BY GOVERNMENT VEHICLE TO LOUISVILLE ON THE WEEKENDS IN QUESTION WAS PRIMARILY FOR HIS OWN BENEFIT AND CHARGED HIM FOR THE COST OF EXCESS TRAVEL AS FOLLOWS: APRIL 15-16 MILEAGE FROM SPRINGFIELD. -$11.00 *A PORTION OF THE EXCESS MILEAGE INCURRED ON THE WEEKEND OF APRIL 29 30 WAS CHARGED TO MR. THE FOLLOWING ITEMS OF EXPENSE WERE SUSPENDED FROM MR. -$1.72 ALL OF THE ABOVE ITEMS WERE SUSPENDED ON THE BASIS THAT MR.

B-164184, JUN. 21, 1968

TO MRS. LUELLA S. HOWARD:

THIS REFERS TO LETTER OF APRIL 29, 1968, WITH ENCLOSURES, FROM MR. R. F. OLSON, DIRECTOR, ACCOUNTING OPERATIONS DIVISION, REQUESTING OUR DECISION WHETHER A RECLAIM VOUCHER IN FAVOR OF MR. HENRY L. GREENWALD, AN EMPLOYEE OF THE HOUSING ASSISTANCE ADMINISTRATION, MAY BE CERTIFIED FOR PAYMENT. IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE PROVISIONS OF 31 U.S.C. 74 AND 82D, WE ARE ADDRESSING OUR DECISION TO YOU.

DURING THE MONTH OF APRIL 1967, MR. GREENWALD PERFORMED TEMPORARY DUTY AT VARIOUS LOCATIONS WITHIN THE STATE OF KENTUCKY. FOR THE PURPOSE OF SUCH DUTY HE WAS ASSIGNED A GOVERNMENT-OWNED VEHICLE. ON THE WEEKENDS OF APRIL 15-16, 22-23, AND 29-30, MR. GREENWALD VOLUNTARILY RETURNED TO HIS RESIDENCE AT HIS OFFICIAL STATION IN MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE. ON EACH OF THOSE WEEKENDS HE DROVE THE GOVERNMENT VEHICLE FROM HIS PLACE OF TEMPORARY DUTY ON FRIDAY TO LOUISVILLE, KENTUCKY, FOR THE PURPOSE OF STORING THE VEHICLE EITHER AT THE GSA MOTOR POOL OR AT THE AIRPORT IN LOUISVILLE WHILE HE WAS AWAY FOR THE WEEKEND.

THE ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICE DETERMINED THAT THE EMPLOYEE'S TRAVEL BY GOVERNMENT VEHICLE TO LOUISVILLE ON THE WEEKENDS IN QUESTION WAS PRIMARILY FOR HIS OWN BENEFIT AND CHARGED HIM FOR THE COST OF EXCESS TRAVEL AS FOLLOWS:

APRIL 15-16

MILEAGE FROM SPRINGFIELD, KY. (PLACE OF TEMPORARY DUTY ON FRIDAY, APRIL 14) TO LOUISVILLE, KY., AND RETURN TO DUTY AT VERSAILLES, KY. (PLACE OF TEMPORARY DUTY ON MONDAY, APRIL 17/-------------------138

DIRECT MILEAGE FROM SPRINGFIELD, KY. TO VERSAILLES, KY.---------76

EXCESS MILEAGE--------------------------------------------------62

APRIL 22-23

MILEAGE FROM CARROLLTON, KY. TO LOUISVILLE, KY. AND RETURN TO DUTY AT FALMOUTH, KY.-------------------------------------------------174

DIRECT MILEAGE FROM CARROLLTON TO FALMOUTH--------------------- 60

EXCESS MILEAGE-------------------------------------------------114

APRIL 29-30

MILEAGE FROM CATLETTSBURG, KY. TO LOUISVILLE, KY. AND RETURN TO DUTY AT BEATTYVILLE, KY.-----------------------------------------369

DIRECT MILEAGE FROM CATLETTSBURG TO BEATTYVILLE----------------125

EXCESS MILEAGE-------------------------------------------------244

COST CHARGEABLE TO EMPLOYEE (DEDUCTED FROM PER DIEM OTHERWISE DUE): 262* MILES AT 4.198 CENTS PER MILE EQUALS ---------------------$11.00 *A PORTION OF THE EXCESS MILEAGE INCURRED ON THE WEEKEND OF APRIL 29 30 WAS CHARGED TO MR. GREENWALD ON HIS MAY VOUCHER.

IN ADDITION TO THE ABOVE, THE FOLLOWING ITEMS OF EXPENSE WERE SUSPENDED FROM MR. GREENWALD'S TRAVEL VOUCHER FOR APRIL 1967:

APRIL 15-16

TELEPHONE CALL TO GSA MOTOR POOL IN LOUISVILLE, KY.----------$ .50

TAXI FARES BETWEEN GSA MOTOR POOL AND AIRPORT IN LOUISVILLE--$3.44

APRIL 22-23

STORAGE OF GOVERNMENT AUTO AT LOUISVILLE AIRPORT-------------$3.00

APRIL 29-30

TAXI FARE FROM GSA MOTOR POOL TO AIRPORT IN LOUISVILLE-------$1.72

ALL OF THE ABOVE ITEMS WERE SUSPENDED ON THE BASIS THAT MR. GREENWALD'S TRAVEL TO LOUISVILLE FOR THE PURPOSE OF STORING THE VEHICLE WAS UNNECESSARY AND NOT IN THE BEST INTEREST OF THE GOVERNMENT.

MR. GREENWALD BELIEVES THAT SINCE HE PERSONALLY WAS RESPONSIBLE FOR THE CARE AND PROTECTION OF THE GOVERNMENT AUTOMOBILE, HE ACTED WITH REASON AND PRUDENCE IN DRIVING THE VEHICLE TO LOUISVILLE FOR STORAGE AT THE GSA MOTOR POOL OR AT THE AIRPORT WHERE 24-HOUR PROTECTION WAS ASSURED.

WITH RESPECT TO THE OPERATION OF GOVERNMENT-OWNED VEHICLES, 31 U.S.C. 638A (C) (2) (1964 ED., SUPP. II) PROVIDES AS FOLLOWS:

"UNLESS OTHERWISE SPECIFICALLY PROVIDED, NO APPROPRIATION AVAILABLE FOR ANY DEPARTMENT SHALL BE EXPENDED --

"/2) FOR THE MAINTENANCE, OPERATION, AND REPAIR OF ANY GOVERNMENT OWNED PASSENGER MOTOR VEHICLE OR AIRCRAFT NOT USED EXCLUSIVELY FOR OFFICIAL PURPOSES; AND -OFFICIAL PURPOSES' SHALL NOT INCLUDE THE TRANSPORTATION OF OFFICERS AND EMPLOYEES BETWEEN THEIR DOMICILES AND PLACES OF EMPLOYMENT, EXCEPT IN CASES OF MEDICAL OFFICERS ON OUTPATIENT MEDICAL SERVICE AND EXCEPT IN CASES OF OFFICERS AND EMPLOYEES ENGAGED IN FIELD WORK THE CHARACTER OF WHOSE DUTIES MAKES SUCH TRANSPORTATION NECESSARY AND THEN ONLY AS TO SUCH LATTER CASES WHEN THE SAME IS APPROVED BY THE HEAD OF THE DEPARTMENT CONCERNED. ANY OFFICER OR EMPLOYEE OF THE GOVERNMENT WHO WILLFULLY USES OR AUTHORIZES THE USE OF ANY GOVERNMENT-OWNED PASSENGER MOTOR VEHICLE OR AIRCRAFT LEASED BY THE GOVERNMENT FOR OTHER THAN OFFICIAL PURPOSES OR OTHERWISE VIOLATES THE PROVISIONS OF THIS PARAGRAPH SHALL BE SUSPENDED FROM DUTY BY THE HEAD OF THE DEPARTMENT CONCERNED, WITHOUT COMPENSATION, FOR NOT LESS THAN ONE MONTH, AND SHALL BE SUSPENDED FOR A LONGER PERIOD OR SUMMARILY REMOVED FROM OFFICE IF CIRCUMSTANCES WARRANT.

TO HOLD THAT MR. GREENWALD IS LIABLE FOR THE ADDITIONAL MILEAGE DRIVEN FOR THE PRIMARY PURPOSE OF PARKING THE GOVERNMENT VEHICLE WOULD IN EFFECT BE A DETERMINATION THAT HE USED THE VEHICLE FOR UNOFFICIAL PURPOSES WHICH IF WILLFUL WOULD THEN REQUIRE IMPOSITION OF THE MINIMUM PENALTY PRESCRIBED IN THE ABOVE STATUTE. CERTAINLY HE WAS RESPONSIBLE FOR THE CARE AND PROTECTION OF THE VEHICLE ASSIGNED TO HIM. IN THAT REGARD SEE SUBPART 101 -39.7 OF THE FEDERAL PROPERTY MANAGEMENT REGULATIONS ISSUED BY THE GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION.

THE DETERMINATION OF WHETHER THERE HAS BEEN A VIOLATION OF THE ABOVE STATUTE PRIMARILY IS A MATTER FOR THE PARTICULAR AGENCY CONCERNED. SUGGEST THAT THE APPROPRIATE OFFICIALS OF YOUR AGENCY CAREFULLY SCRUTINIZE THE CIRCUMSTANCES SURROUNDING MR. GREENWALD'S TRAVEL TO DETERMINE WHETHER OR NOT A VIOLATION OF 31 U.S.C. 638A (C) (2) OCCURRED. IF A DETERMINATION IS MADE THAT THE EMPLOYEE VIOLATED THE STATUTE THEN NO REFUND OF THE AMOUNT COLLECTED FOR USE OF THE VEHICLE WOULD BE REQUIRED. OTHERWISE, SUCH REFUND SHOULD BE MADE.

REGARDLESS OF THE ACTION TAKEN WE ASSUME MR. GREENWALD WILL BE GIVEN MORE SPECIFIC GUIDELINES AS TO THE PARKING OF THE GOVERNMENT VEHICLE WHEN RETURNING HOME ON WEEKENDS.

WITH RESPECT TO THE REMAINING ITEMS ON MR. GREENWALD'S RECLAIM VOUCHER, THE FOLLOWING ACTION MAY BE TAKEN:

THE TELEPHONE CALL TO THE GSA MOTOR POOL IN LOUISVILLE WAS FOR THE PURPOSE OF DETERMINING THE AVAILABILITY OF STORAGE SPACE AND MAY BE ALLOWED AS AN OFFICIAL BUSINESS CALL UNDER SECTION 8.2 OF THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS.

THE COST OF STORING THE GOVERNMENT VEHICLE AT THE AIRPORT IN LOUISVILLE ON THE WEEKEND OF APRIL 22-23 IS TO BE BORNE BY THE GOVERNMENT -- THERE BEING NO INDICATION THAT STORAGE CHARGES WOULD HAVE BEEN LESS AT THE EMPLOYEE'S TEMPORARY DUTY STATION.

THE TAXI FARES FOR TRAVEL BETWEEN THE GSA MOTOR POOL AND THE AIRPORT IN LOUISVILLE ARE EXPENSES INCIDENT TO THE EMPLOYEE'S VOLUNTARY RETURN ON WEEKENDS TO HIS OFFICIAL STATION AND, AS SUCH, ARE ALLOWABLE ONLY TO THE EXTENT AUTHORIZED BY SECTION 6.3 OF THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS.

THE VOUCHER IS RETURNED HEREWITH FOR HANDLING IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE ABOVE.