B-167359, AUG. 7, 1969

B-167359: Aug 7, 1969

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FROM HEADQUARTERS TO THE AIR BASE - A DISTANCE OF 15 MILES - INCIDENT TO TEMPORARY DUTY TRAVEL BY GOVERNMENT AIRCRAFT MAY NOT HAVE SUCH TRAVEL REGARDED AS TRAVEL BY A SCHEDULED MEANS OF TRANSPORTATION UNDER SECTION 6.9C OF THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS AND THEREFORE PER DIEM WAS PROPERLY PAYABLE FROM TIME OF ARRIVAL AT THE AIR BASE EXCLUDING TIME ON THE BUS. HIEHLE AND SEVERAL OTHER DESC EMPLOYEES WERE ORDERED TO TRAVEL FROM DAYTON. THE EMPLOYEES WERE TO PROCEED TO WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE. A GOVERNMENT-OWNED BUS WAS MADE AVAILABLE TO TRANSPORT THE TRAVELERS FROM DESC (15 MILES FROM WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE) FOR THOSE DESIRING ITS USE. HE WAS ALLOWED PER DIEM FROM 6:10 A.M.

B-167359, AUG. 7, 1969

CIVIL PAY - PER DIEM DECISION TO DEFENSE ELECTRONICS SUPPLY CENTER ACCOUNTING AND FINANCE OFFICER HOLDING THAT EMPLOYEE WHO TOOK A GOVERNMENT-OWNED BUS AT 5:40 A.M. FROM HEADQUARTERS TO THE AIR BASE - A DISTANCE OF 15 MILES - INCIDENT TO TEMPORARY DUTY TRAVEL BY GOVERNMENT AIRCRAFT MAY NOT HAVE SUCH TRAVEL REGARDED AS TRAVEL BY A SCHEDULED MEANS OF TRANSPORTATION UNDER SECTION 6.9C OF THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS AND THEREFORE PER DIEM WAS PROPERLY PAYABLE FROM TIME OF ARRIVAL AT THE AIR BASE EXCLUDING TIME ON THE BUS.

TO MAJOR R. E. HENNESSEY, USAF:

THIS REFERS TO YOUR LETTER OF MAY 29, 1969, REFERENCE DESC-CA, WITH ENCLOSURES, FORWARDED HERE BY THE PER DIEM, TRAVEL AND TRANSPORTATION ALLOWANCE COMMITTEE ON JUNE 26, 1969, PDTATAC CONTROL NO. 69-26, REQUESTING OUR DECISION WHETHER PAYMENT OF $4 MAY BE MADE TO MR. WILLIAM J. HIEHLE, AN EMPLOYEE OF THE DEFENSE ELECTRONICS SUPPLY CENTER (DESC), REPRESENTING 1/4 PER DIEM.

THE INFORMATION FURNISHED SHOWS THAT MR. HIEHLE AND SEVERAL OTHER DESC EMPLOYEES WERE ORDERED TO TRAVEL FROM DAYTON, OHIO, TO PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA, ON FEBRUARY 19, 1969, FOR 2 DAYS TEMPORARY DUTY AND RETURN. THE EMPLOYEES WERE TO PROCEED TO WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, OHIO, AND AT THAT POINT UTILIZE THE SERVICES OF A GOVERNMENT-OWNED AIRCRAFT FOR THE TRIP. A GOVERNMENT-OWNED BUS WAS MADE AVAILABLE TO TRANSPORT THE TRAVELERS FROM DESC (15 MILES FROM WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE) FOR THOSE DESIRING ITS USE. MR. HIEHLE UTILIZED THE SERVICES OF THE BUS, DEPARTING FROM DESC AT 5:40 A.M., AND ARRIVING AT THE AIR BASE AT 6:10 A.M. HE WAS ALLOWED PER DIEM FROM 6:10 A.M. BUT CONTENDS THAT PER DIEM SHOULD HAVE BEGUN AT 5:40 A.M.

SECTION 6.9C OF THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS, AS AMENDED, EFFECTIVE MAY 1, 1960, IS AS FOLLOWS:

"GENERALLY FOR COMPUTING PER DIEM ALLOWANCES OFFICIAL TRAVEL BEGINS WHEN THE TRAIN, AIRPLANE, BOAT, OR OTHER CONVEYANCE IS SCHEDULED TO DEPART FROM ITS DEPOT, AIRPORT, OR DOCK AND ENDS WHEN THE TRAIN, AIRPLANE, BOAT, OR OTHER CONVEYANCE ACTUALLY ARRIVES AT ITS DEPOT, AIRPORT, OR DOCK AT THE CONCLUSION OF A TRIP. HOWEVER, THE FOLLOWING EXCEPTIONS ARE AUTHORIZED:

"/1) WHEN A TRAVELER USES AN AUTOMOBILE OR OTHER NONSCHEDULED MEANS OF TRANSPORTATION BETWEEN HIS OFFICE, HOME, OR OTHER POINT OF DEPARTURE AND A DEPOT, AIRPORT, OR DOCK LOCATED MORE THAN 50 MILES DISTANT (DETERMINED BY USUALLY TRAVELED MOTOR ROUTE), OFFICIAL TRAVEL FOR COMPUTING PER DIEM ALLOWANCES BEGINS WHEN THE EMPLOYEE ACTUALLY LEAVES HIS HOME, OFFICE, OR OTHER POINT OF DEPARTURE AND ENDS WHEN HE RETURNS FROM SUCH DEPOT AIRPORT, OR DOCK TO HIS HOME, OFFICE, OR OTHER POINT AT THE CONCLUSION OF HIS TRIP.

"/2) WHEN A TRAVELER USES AN AUTOMOBILE OR OTHER NONSCHEDULED MEANS OF TRANSPORTATION BETWEEN HIS OFFICE, HOME, OR OTHER POINT OF DEPARTURE AND A TEMPORARY DUTY STATION, OFFICIAL TRAVEL BEGINS AT THE TIME THE TRAVELER LEAVES HIS HOME, OFFICE, OR OTHER POINT OF DEPARTURE AND ENDS WHEN THE TRAVELER RETURNS TO HIS HOME, OFFICE, OR OTHER POINT BY AN AUTOMOBILE OR OTHER NONSCHEDULED CONVEYANCE AT THE CONCLUSION OF HIS TRIP. HOWEVER, WHEN THE TIME OF DEPARTURE IS WITHIN 30 MINUTES PRIOR TO THE END OF A QUARTER DAY, OR THE TIME OF RETURN IS WITHIN 30 MINUTES AFTER THE BEGINNING OF A QUARTER DAY, PER DIEM FOR EITHER SUCH QUARTER DAY SHALL NOT BE ALLOWED IN THE ABSENCE OF A STATEMENT WITH THE TRAVEL VOUCHER EXPLAINING THE OFFICIAL NECESSITY FOR THE TIME OF DEPARTURE OR RETURN.'

SINCE THE DISTANCE INVOLVED IN THIS CASE WAS LESS THAN 50 MILES AND AS THE BUS USED DOES NOT APPEAR TO HAVE BEEN A SCHEDULED MEANS OF TRANSPORTATION WITHIN THE MEANING OF THE REGULATION WE FIND NO BASIS FOR ALLOWANCE OF THE CLAIM. 40 COMP. GEN. 128.

IN THE COVERING LETTER OF JUNE 26, 1969, REFERENCE IS MADE TO DECISION B- 130553, DATED MARCH 1, 1957, AS A POSSIBLE PRECEDENT FOR THE PAYMENT OF PER DIEM IN THIS CASE FROM THE TIME THE TRAVELER DEPARTED FROM HIS DUTY STATION BY BUS. HOWEVER, THAT DECISION INVOLVED THE ALLOWANCE OF PER DIEM FROM THE TIME AN EMPLOYEE LEFT THE LIMOUSINE TERMINAL FOR AN AIRPORT (THE LIMOUSINE SERVICE BEING REGARDED AS SCHEDULED). SEE ALSO B-154528, DATED JULY 1, 1964, COPY ENCLOSED.

THE VOUCHER TRANSMITTED WITH YOUR LETTER IS RETAINED IN THE FILES OF OUR OFFICE.