B-164720, AUG. 5, 1968

B-164720: Aug 5, 1968

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TO MISS MATILDA UDOFF: THIS IS IN REPLY TO YOUR LETTER OF JUNE 26. BRILL WAS APPOINTED ON SEPTEMBER 19. THE APPOINTMENT WAS CONVERTED TO A CAREER-CONDITIONAL APPOINTMENT. THE EXPENSES ON THE EMPLOYEE'S VOUCHER WERE AUTHORIZED. YOU QUESTION WHETHER THE EXPENSES ARE ALLOWABLE SINCE THEY COULD NOT HAVE BEEN AUTHORIZED WHEN THE EMPLOYEE REPORTED FOR DUTY BECAUSE OF THE TEMPORARY NATURE OF HIS APPOINTMENT. UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF 5 U.S.C. 5723 AN AGENCY MAY PAY THE TRAVEL EXPENSES OF AN EMPLOYEE AND THE TRANSPORTATION OF HIS IMMEDIATE FAMILY AND HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS TO HIS DUTY STATION WHEN HE IS APPOINTED TO A POSITION FOR WHICH THE CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION DETERMINES THERE IS A MANPOWER SHORTAGE AND THE EMPLOYEE AGREES IN WRITING TO REMAIN IN GOVERNMENT SERVICE FOR 12 MONTHS AFTER HIS APPOINTMENT.

B-164720, AUG. 5, 1968

TO MISS MATILDA UDOFF:

THIS IS IN REPLY TO YOUR LETTER OF JUNE 26, 1968, REFERENCE 121.16, REQUESTING OUR DECISION AS TO WHETHER YOU MAY CERTIFY FOR PAYMENT A VOUCHER IN FAVOR OF MR. MICHAEL BRILL FOR $198.83 COVERING REIMBURSEMENT FOR TRAVELING EXPENSES FOR HIMSELF AND HIS DEPENDENTS AND MOVEMENT OF HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS INCURRED IN CONNECTION WITH REPORTING TO HIS FIRST DUTY STATION.

MR. BRILL WAS APPOINTED ON SEPTEMBER 19, 1967, AS AN ARCHITECT, GS 15, A MANPOWER SHORTAGE CATEGORY, ON A TEMPORARY APPOINTMENT NOT TO EXCEED SIX (6) MONTHS, PENDING FORMAL RATING AND CERTIFICATION BY THE CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION. ON DECEMBER 10, 1967, THE APPOINTMENT WAS CONVERTED TO A CAREER-CONDITIONAL APPOINTMENT. ON APRIL 17, 1968, MR. BRILL SIGNED AN EMPLOYMENT AGREEMENT TO REMAIN IN GOVERNMENT SERVICE FOR 12 MONTHS AFTER HIS APPOINTMENT. BY TRAVEL ORDER DATED MAY 27, 1968, THE EXPENSES ON THE EMPLOYEE'S VOUCHER WERE AUTHORIZED. YOU QUESTION WHETHER THE EXPENSES ARE ALLOWABLE SINCE THEY COULD NOT HAVE BEEN AUTHORIZED WHEN THE EMPLOYEE REPORTED FOR DUTY BECAUSE OF THE TEMPORARY NATURE OF HIS APPOINTMENT.

UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF 5 U.S.C. 5723 AN AGENCY MAY PAY THE TRAVEL EXPENSES OF AN EMPLOYEE AND THE TRANSPORTATION OF HIS IMMEDIATE FAMILY AND HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS TO HIS DUTY STATION WHEN HE IS APPOINTED TO A POSITION FOR WHICH THE CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION DETERMINES THERE IS A MANPOWER SHORTAGE AND THE EMPLOYEE AGREES IN WRITING TO REMAIN IN GOVERNMENT SERVICE FOR 12 MONTHS AFTER HIS APPOINTMENT.

WE HAVE BEEN ADVISED THAT IT IS THE ESTABLISHED POLICY OF THE BUREAU TO AUTHORIZE TRAVEL AND TRANSPORTATION EXPENSES OF NEW APPOINTEES TO ARCHITECT POSITIONS. APPARENTLY, A TRAVEL ORDER WAS NOT ISSUED TO MR. BRILL AT THE TIME OF MR. BRILL'S ORIGINAL APPOINTMENT BECAUSE OF THE MISTAKEN BELIEF THAT SINCE HIS APPOINTMENT WAS "TEMPORARY" HE WAS NOT LEGALLY ENTITLED TO REIMBURSEMENT OF THE EXPENSES OF TRAVEL TO HIS FIRST DUTY STATION. AS TO THE TENURE OF APPOINTMENTS NOT BEING MATERIAL IN A SITUATION SUCH AS HERE SEE B-164051, JULY 10, 1968, COPY HEREWITH. ALSO, AS TO SERVICE AGREEMENTS FOR LESS THAN 12 MONTHS SEE 26 COMP. GEN. 488, AT PAGES 494, 495, CITED IN THE DECISION OF JULY 10, 1968.

WE SEE NO REASON WHY THE TRAVEL AUTHORIZATION PREVIOUSLY REFERRED TO MAY NOT BE REGARDED AS AN APPROVAL OF REIMBURSEMENT OF EXPENSES INCURRED AT THE TIME OF ORIGINAL APPOINTMENT AND THE VOUCHER WHICH IS RETURNED HEREWITH MAY BE CERTIFIED FOR PAYMENT IF OTHERWISE CORRECT.