B-167156, JUL. 10, 1969

B-167156: Jul 10, 1969

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WE UNDERSTAND THAT THE ACADEMIC PORTION OF THE "APPRENTICE PROGRAM OF THE NAVAL SHIPYARD" WAS TRANSFERRED FROM THE SHIPYARD TO FREDERICK COMMUNITY COLLEGE WHICH YOU SAY IS LOCATED APPROXIMATELY 10 MILES DISTANT FROM THE SHIPYARD. WE UNDERSTAND THAT THE ACADEMIC TRAINING IS ON A FULL-TIME BASIS FOR THE 12-WEEK PERIOD INVOLVED. THUS UNDER THE CONTROLLING STATUTE THE PAYMENT OF EXPENSES OF TRAINING IS A PERMISSIVE MATTER. WE HAVE FOUND NO REGULATION OF THE DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY ENTITLING EMPLOYEES UNDERGOING TRAINING TO REIMBURSEMENT FOR EXPENSES OF TRAINING AS A MATTER OF RIGHT. SINCE IN THE VALID EXERCISE OF ADMINISTRATIVE DISCRETION IT WAS DETERMINED THAT NO TRAVEL REIMBURSEMENT WOULD BE AUTHORIZED IN CONNECTION WITH THE ACADEMIC PORTION OF THE APPRENTICE PROGRAM.

B-167156, JUL. 10, 1969

TO CAPTAIN W. H. LEWIS, COMPTROLLER:

WE REFER TO YOUR LETTER OF MARCH 17, 1969, MY6/12770/600), FORWARDED HERE ON JUNE 2, 1969, BY THE OFFICE OF THE COMPTROLLER OF THE NAVY, WHEREIN YOU REQUEST OUR DECISION CONCERNING THE ENTITLEMENT OF CERTAIN EMPLOYEES UNDERGOING TRAINING AT THE FREDERICK COMMUNITY COLLEGE TO REIMBURSEMENT FOR EXPENSES OF DAILY TRAVEL TO AND FROM THE COLLEGE.

WE UNDERSTAND THAT THE ACADEMIC PORTION OF THE "APPRENTICE PROGRAM OF THE NAVAL SHIPYARD" WAS TRANSFERRED FROM THE SHIPYARD TO FREDERICK COMMUNITY COLLEGE WHICH YOU SAY IS LOCATED APPROXIMATELY 10 MILES DISTANT FROM THE SHIPYARD, AND THE EMPLOYEES INVOLVED FEEL THAT EITHER TRANSPORTATION IN KIND SHOULD BE FURNISHED BETWEEN THE SHIPYARD AND THE COLLEGE OR THAT THEY SHOULD BE REIMBURSED FOR DAILY ROUND TRIP TRAVEL TO AND FROM THE COLLEGE. FINALLY, WE UNDERSTAND THAT THE ACADEMIC TRAINING IS ON A FULL-TIME BASIS FOR THE 12-WEEK PERIOD INVOLVED.

THE ACADEMIC TRAINING IN QUESTION CLEARLY CONSTITUTES "TRAINING" WITHIN THE MEANING OF 5 U.S.C. 4101 (4) AND UNDER SECTION 4109 OF SUCH TITLE THE EMPLOYING AGENCY MAY PAY OR REIMBURSE AN EMPLOYEE FOR ALL OR A PART OF THE NECESSARY EXPENSES OF TRAINING.

THUS UNDER THE CONTROLLING STATUTE THE PAYMENT OF EXPENSES OF TRAINING IS A PERMISSIVE MATTER. MOREOVER, WE HAVE FOUND NO REGULATION OF THE DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY ENTITLING EMPLOYEES UNDERGOING TRAINING TO REIMBURSEMENT FOR EXPENSES OF TRAINING AS A MATTER OF RIGHT.

ACCORDINGLY, SINCE IN THE VALID EXERCISE OF ADMINISTRATIVE DISCRETION IT WAS DETERMINED THAT NO TRAVEL REIMBURSEMENT WOULD BE AUTHORIZED IN CONNECTION WITH THE ACADEMIC PORTION OF THE APPRENTICE PROGRAM, THE TRAVEL EXPENSES IN QUESTION MAY NOT BE PAID.