B-167902, OCT. 16, 1969

B-167902: Oct 16, 1969

Additional Materials:

Contact:

Edda Emmanuelli Perez
(202) 512-2853
EmmanuelliPerezE@gao.gov

 

Office of Public Affairs
(202) 512-4800
youngc1@gao.gov

1968 WAS NOT RECEIVED BY AUTHORIZING OFFICIAL UNTIL AUG. 26. WAS NOT APPROVED UNTIL AFTER TRIP WAS PERFORMED. RECOVERY OF REIMBURSEMENT PAID WILL NOT BE INSISTED UPON HERE OR IN 21 OTHER SIMILAR CASES SINCE SEC. 2.4 OF BUREAU OF BUDGET CIR. A-56 WAS NOT ENTIRELY CLEAR ON MATTER OF APPROVING HOUSEHUNTING TRIPS. CLARIFYING INSTRUCTIONS WERE NOT RECEIVED BY FOREST SERVICE UNTIL NOV. 25. INCLUDED THEREIN WAS A REQUEST FOR A HOUSE HUNTING TRIP TO BE PERFORMED DURING THE PERIOD AUGUST I3-26. WAS NOT RECEIVED BY THE TRAVEL AUTHORIZING OFFICIAL UNTIL AUGUST 26 AND. WAS NOT APPROVED UNTIL AFTER MR. THE EMPLOYEE'S CLAIM FOR REIMBURSEMENT OF THE HOUSE HUNTING EXPENSES WAS ADMINISTRATIVELY APPROVED AND PAYMENT WAS MADE TO HIM ON OCTOBER 25.

B-167902, OCT. 16, 1969

OFFICERS AND EMPLOYEES--TRANSFERS--RELOCATION EXPENSES--TRANSPORTATION FOR HOUSE HUNTING--AUTHORIZATION WHERE TRANSFERRED FOREST SERVICE EMPLOYEE'S REQUEST FOR HOUSEHUNTING TRIP FOR PERIOD AUG. 23-26, 1968 WAS NOT RECEIVED BY AUTHORIZING OFFICIAL UNTIL AUG. 26, AND WAS NOT APPROVED UNTIL AFTER TRIP WAS PERFORMED, RECOVERY OF REIMBURSEMENT PAID WILL NOT BE INSISTED UPON HERE OR IN 21 OTHER SIMILAR CASES SINCE SEC. 2.4 OF BUREAU OF BUDGET CIR. NO. A-56 WAS NOT ENTIRELY CLEAR ON MATTER OF APPROVING HOUSEHUNTING TRIPS, AND CLARIFYING INSTRUCTIONS WERE NOT RECEIVED BY FOREST SERVICE UNTIL NOV. 25, 1968, AFTER TRAVEL IN QUESTION HAD ALREADY BEEN PERFORMED.

TO MR. WILLIAM A. CAMPBELL:

THIS REFERS TO YOUR LETTER OF SEPTEMBER 12, 1969, WITH ENCLOSURES, REFERENCE 6540, REQUESTING OUR DECISION AS TO WHETHER OR NOT THE COSTS OF A HOUSE HUNTING TRIP PERFORMED BY MR. ROBERT F. LYLE, AN EMPLOYEE OF THE FOREST SERVICE, SHOULD BE RECOVERED FROM HIM UNDER THE FOLLOWING RELATED FACTS.

ON AUGUST 19, 1968, MR. LYLE SUBMITTED A FORM 6500-140, REQUESTING AUTHORITY TO INCUR TRAVEL AND TRANSPORTATION EXPENSES INCIDENT TO A PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION FROM RUIDOSO, NEW MEXICO, TO LAS VEGAS, NEW MEXICO, TO BE EFFECTIVE SEPTEMBER 8, 1968. INCLUDED THEREIN WAS A REQUEST FOR A HOUSE HUNTING TRIP TO BE PERFORMED DURING THE PERIOD AUGUST I3-26, 1968. SUCH REQUEST, HOWEVER, WAS NOT RECEIVED BY THE TRAVEL AUTHORIZING OFFICIAL UNTIL AUGUST 26 AND, ACCORDINGLY, WAS NOT APPROVED UNTIL AFTER MR. LYLE HAD PERFORMED THE TRIP IN QUESTION. NEVERTHELESS, THE EMPLOYEE'S CLAIM FOR REIMBURSEMENT OF THE HOUSE HUNTING EXPENSES WAS ADMINISTRATIVELY APPROVED AND PAYMENT WAS MADE TO HIM ON OCTOBER 25, 1968.

YOU INDICATE THAT PRIOR TO RECEIVING INSTRUCTIONS TO THE CONTRARY ON NOVEMBER 25, 1968, SECTION 2.4 OF BUREAU OF THE BUDGET CIRCULAR NO. A 56, REVISED OCTOBER 12, 1966, WAS INTERPRETED AS PERMITTING THE POST APPROVAL OF HOUSE HUNTING TRIPS IF OTHERWISE PROPER. YOU ALSO INDICATE THAT THE PRESENT CASE IS REPRESENTATIVE OF 21 SIMILAR CASES INVOLVING POST APPROVED HOUSE HUNTING TRIPS.

IN VIEW OF THE FACT THAT SECTION 2.4 OF CIRCULAR NO. A-56 WAS NOT ENTIRELY CLEAR ON THE MATTER OF APPROVING HOUSE HUNTING TRIPS AND SINCE CLARIFYING INSTRUCTIONS WERE NOT RECEIVED UNTIL AFTER THE TRAVEL IN QUESTION HAD BEEN PERFORMED, WE WILL NOT INSIST UPON RECOVERY OF THE PAYMENTS MADE IN THIS CASE OR IN ANY OTHER CASE INVOLVING SIMILAR CIRCUMSTANCES.