B-164937, AUG. 16, 1968

B-164937: Aug 16, 1968

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WIRTH'S FORMER RESIDENCE WAS SETTLED ON JUNE 16. SUCH DWELLING WAS NOT IN FACT HIS ACTUAL RESIDENCE BECAUSE OF THE INTERVENING CHANGE OF OFFICIAL STATION FROM JOLIET TO ST. WIRTH'S FAMILY APPARENTLY WAS IN THE COURSE OF JOINING HIM IN ST. IT NOW IS IMMATERIAL WHETHER HE EXECUTED SUCH AN AGREEMENT IN CONNECTION WITH THE CHANGE OF OFFICIAL STATION TO JOLIET. PROVIDED THAT A PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION IS AUTHORIZED OR APPROVED AND THE EMPLOYEE HAS EXECUTED THE AGREEMENT REQUIRED BY SECTION 1.3 OF THE CIRCULAR. THAT IT WAS HIS ACTUAL RESIDENCE AT THE TIME HE FIRST WAS INFORMED OF HIS CONTEMPLATED TRANSFER. WIRTH INCIDENT TO THE SALE OF HIS RESIDENCE IN HATSBORO NOW IS ADMINISTRATIVELY APPROVED.

B-164937, AUG. 16, 1968

TO COLONEL JOHN F. HOGAN:

WE REFER TO YOUR LETTER OF FEBRUARY 29, 1968, WITH ENCLOSURES, TRANSMITTED HERE THROUGH THE COMMANDING GENERAL, U.S. ARMY FINANCE CENTER, IN WHICH YOU REQUEST OUR DECISION WHETHER THE WIDOW OF WILBUR W. WIRTH, A FORMER CIVILIAN EMPLOYEE OF THE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY, NOW DECEASED, MAY BE REIMBURSED FOR THE EXPENSES INCURRED BY HIM IN CONNECTION WITH THE SALE OF HIS FORMER ACTUAL RESIDENCE AT HATSBORO, PENNSYLVANIA, INCIDENT TO THE TRANSFER OF HIS OFFICIAL STATION ON OR ABOUT OCTOBER 30, 1966, FROM PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA, TO JOLIET, ILLINOIS, AND HIS SUBSEQUENT TRANSFER, EFFECTIVE DECEMBER 20, 1966, TO ST. LOUIS, MISSOURI.

THE SALE OF MR. WIRTH'S FORMER RESIDENCE WAS SETTLED ON JUNE 16, 1967, AND HIS DEATH OCCURRED ON JUNE 27, 1967. THE QUESTION PRESENTED BY YOUR LETTER ARISES BECAUSE ON THE DATE OF SALE OF THE HATSBORO DWELLING, SUCH DWELLING WAS NOT IN FACT HIS ACTUAL RESIDENCE BECAUSE OF THE INTERVENING CHANGE OF OFFICIAL STATION FROM JOLIET TO ST. LOUIS, EFFECTIVE DECEMBER 20, 1966.

BECAUSE THE EMPLOYEE'S IMMEDIATE FAMILY DID NOT ACCOMPANY HIM UPON HIS TRANSFER TO JOLIET BUT CONTINUED TO RESIDE AT HIS FORMER RESIDENCE IN HATSBORO, NEITHER OF THE TRAVEL ORDERS TRANSFERRING MR. WIRTH TO JOLIET AND SUBSEQUENTLY TO ST. LOUIS AUTHORIZED REIMBURSEMENT OF THE EXPENSES OF THE SALE OF HIS FORMER RESIDENCE IN HATSBORO. MR. WIRTH'S FAMILY APPARENTLY WAS IN THE COURSE OF JOINING HIM IN ST. LOUIS AT THE TIME OF HIS DEATH.

IT DOES NOT APPEAR THAT MR. WIRTH EXECUTED AN AGREEMENT AS REQUIRED BY SECTION 1.3 OF BUREAU OF THE BUDGET CIRCULAR NO. A-56 IN CONNECTION WITH HIS TRANSFER TO JOLIET BUT DID EXECUTE SUCH AN AGREEMENT UPON HIS LATER TRANSFER TO ST. LOUIS. HOWEVER, IT NOW IS IMMATERIAL WHETHER HE EXECUTED SUCH AN AGREEMENT IN CONNECTION WITH THE CHANGE OF OFFICIAL STATION TO JOLIET.

SECTION 4.1 OF CIRCULAR NO. A-56 AUTHORIZES REIMBURSEMENT OF EXPENSES INCURRED BY AN EMPLOYEE IN CONNECTION WITH THE SALE OF ONE RESIDENCE AT HIS OLD OFFICIAL STATION, PROVIDED THAT A PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION IS AUTHORIZED OR APPROVED AND THE EMPLOYEE HAS EXECUTED THE AGREEMENT REQUIRED BY SECTION 1.3 OF THE CIRCULAR. IT REQUIRES FURTHER THAT THE EMPLOYEE HAD TITLE TO THE PROPERTY; THAT IT WAS HIS ACTUAL RESIDENCE AT THE TIME HE FIRST WAS INFORMED OF HIS CONTEMPLATED TRANSFER; THAT SETTLEMENT OF THE SALE OF PROPERTY OCCURS NOT LATER THAN ONE YEAR AFTER THE EMPLOYEE ENTERS ON DUTY AT HIS NEW OFFICIAL STATION AND THAT THE EMPLOYEE HAS PAID THE EXPENSE FOR WHICH HE CLAIMS REIMBURSEMENT.

THE EVIDENCE OF RECORD INDICATES THAT MR. WIRTH HAD MET ALL OF THE REQUIREMENTS OF SECTION 4.1 OF THE CIRCULAR PRIOR TO HIS DEATH AND THE LATER TRANSFER OF STATION DID NOT OF ITSELF DIVEST HIM OF THE INCHOATE RIGHT TO BE REIMBURSED FOR THE SALE OF HIS RESIDENCE. THUS, IF REIMBURSEMENT FOR EXPENSES INCURRED BY MR. WIRTH INCIDENT TO THE SALE OF HIS RESIDENCE IN HATSBORO NOW IS ADMINISTRATIVELY APPROVED, WE PERCEIVE NO OBJECTION TO THE ALLOWANCE TO MRS. WIRTH OF SUCH REIMBURSEMENT AS IS AUTHORIZED BY SECTION 4.2 OF THE BUDGET CIRCULAR.

DISTINGUISH OUR DECISION OF MARCH 10, 1967, B-160898, 46 COMP. GEN. 703, IN WHICH IT WAS NOT SHOWN THAT THE RESIDENCE SOLD WAS AT AN OLD OFFICIAL STATION. ALSO, COMPARE B-164318, DATED JUNE 21, 1968, COPY ENCLOSED, WHEREIN THE SALE OF THE RESIDENCE DID NOT OCCUR WITHIN ONE YEAR AFTER THE INITIAL TRANSFER.