B-166419, APR. 22, 1969

B-166419: Apr 22, 1969

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GUTHRIE WAS TRANSFERRED FROM MONTROSE. THE TITLE TO SUCH DWELLING WAS IN THE NAME OF HIS WIFE. FINAL SETTLEMENT OF THAT TRANSACTION WAS EFFECTED ON JANUARY 24. THE VOUCHER WHICH IS RETURNED HEREWITH MAY BE CERTIFIED FOR PAYMENT IF OTHERWISE CORRECT.

B-166419, APR. 22, 1969

TO MR. C. H. SCHULTZ:

THIS REFERS TO YOUR LETTER OF FEBRUARY 27, 1969, WITH ENCLOSURES, REFERENCE 300, REQUESTING OUR DECISION WHETHER A VOUCHER IN FAVOR OF MR. CARL W. GUTHRIE, AN EMPLOYEE OF THE BUREAU OF RECLAMATION, MAY BE CERTIFIED FOR PAYMENT. THE VOUCHER COVERS CERTAIN REAL ESTATE EXPENSES INCURRED BY MR. GUTHRIE IN CONNECTION WITH THE DISPOSITION OF RESIDENTIAL PROPERTY AT HIS OLD OFFICIAL STATION. UNDER THE FACTS HEREINAFTER RELATED YOU EXPRESS DOUBT WHETHER THE REAL ESTATE TRANSACTION CONSTITUTED A SALE WITHIN THE MEANING OF THE APPLICABLE LAW AND REGULATIONS.

MR. GUTHRIE WAS TRANSFERRED FROM MONTROSE, COLORADO, TO GARRISON, NORTH DAKOTA, EFFECTIVE JUNE 30, 1968. PRIOR TO HIS TRANSFER THE EMPLOYEE HAD RESIDED IN A DWELLING LOCATED IN GRAND JUNCTION, COLORADO. THE TITLE TO SUCH DWELLING WAS IN THE NAME OF HIS WIFE, RAYMA GUTHRIE.

ON JANUARY 14, 1969, MRS. GUTHRIE ENTERED INTO A CONTRACT UNDER WHICH SHE AGREED TO CONVEY HER RESIDENTIAL PROPERTY TO A CERTAIN PARTY IN EXCHANGE FOR THAT PARTY'S RESIDENTIAL PROPERTY WITH THE UNDERSTANDING THAT SUCH PARTY WOULD ASSUME THE BALANCE OF A MORTGAGE OR TRUST INSTRUMENT OF APPROXIMATELY $15,000. FINAL SETTLEMENT OF THAT TRANSACTION WAS EFFECTED ON JANUARY 24, 1969. THE CLOSING STATEMENT SHOWS (1) THE VALUE OF MRS. GUTHRIE'S PROPERTY AS $42,500, (2) THE VALUE OF THE OTHER PARTY'S PROPERTY AS $27,311.10 AND (3) THE BALANCE DUE ON MRS. GUTHRIE'S LOAN ON HER PROPERTY AS $15,221.95.

THE ASSUMPTION OF THE BALANCE OF THE LOAN ON MRS. GUTHRIE'S PROPERTY BY THE OTHER PARTY APPEARS TO BE TANTAMOUNT TO A CASH PAYMENT TO MRS. GUTHRIE. UNDER THE CIRCUMSTANCES RELATED WE SEE NO REASON WHY THE TRANSACTION MAY NOT BE REGARDED AS A SALE WITHIN THE MEANING OF PUBLIC LAW 89-516, 80 STAT. 323, AND SECTION 4 OF BUREAU OF THE BUDGET CIRCULAR NO. A -56.

ACCORDINGLY, THE VOUCHER WHICH IS RETURNED HEREWITH MAY BE CERTIFIED FOR PAYMENT IF OTHERWISE CORRECT.