B-174717, APR 21, 1972

B-174717: Apr 21, 1972

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SINCE NO STATUTORY REIMBURSEMENT IS PROVIDED FOR THE COSTS OF OVERLAND RAIL SHIPMENT. ANDERSON: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR FIRST INDORSEMENT. YOU APPLIED FOR A GOVERNMENT BILL OF LADING FOR SHIPMENT OF YOUR HOUSEHOLD GOODS AND PRIVATELY OWNED VEHICLE INCIDENT TO YOUR TRANSFER BUT NO ACTION WAS TAKEN WITH RESPECT TO THE VEHICLE PRIOR TO THE TIME THAT YOU ARRIVED IN LA PAZ ON MAY 11. YOU ALSO SAY THAT AFTER DISCUSSING THE MATTER WITH THE INSPECTOR GENERAL YOUR AUTOMOBILE WAS SHIPPED BY SEA VIA PANAMA TO MATARANI. YOU STATE THAT IT WAS NOT RECEIVED BY YOU IN LA PAZ UNTIL FEBRUARY 8. YOUR CLAIM FOR REIMBURSEMENT OF THE COST OF THE RAIL SHIPMENT WAS DISALLOWED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY AND YOU HAVE REFERRED THE MATTER HERE FOR "EXAMINATION ON ITS MERITS" AS A CLAIM "ENTAILING ALLEGED MISCONSTRUCTION OF PUBLIC LAW OF THE UNITED STATES.".

B-174717, APR 21, 1972

MILITARY PERSONNEL - OFFICIAL CHANGE OF STATION - SHIPPING COSTS FOR PRIVATE AUTO - REIMBURSEMENT DECISION DENYING THE CLAIM OF LT. COL. GERALD E. ANDERSON FOR REIMBURSEMENT OF THE COSTS OF SHIPPING HIS PRIVATELY-OWNED AUTOMOBILE FROM MATARONI, PERU, TO LA PAZ, BOLIVIA, INCIDENT TO A CHANGE OF STATION. VOLUME 1 OF JTR, M11000-2, IMPLEMENTING THE PROVISIONS OF 10 U.S.C. 2634, AUTHORIZES TRANSOCEAN SHIPMENT OF A MEMBER'S PRIVATE VEHICLE AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE. 45 COMP. GEN. 608 (1966). SINCE NO STATUTORY REIMBURSEMENT IS PROVIDED FOR THE COSTS OF OVERLAND RAIL SHIPMENT, THE CLAIM MUST BE DENIED.

TO LIEUTENANT COLONEL GERALD E. ANDERSON:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR FIRST INDORSEMENT, DATED DECEMBER 2, 1971, FORWARDING THE FILE RELATIVE TO YOUR CLAIM FOR $144.03 REPRESENTING THE COST OF OVERLAND SHIPMENT OF YOUR PRIVATELY OWNED AUTOMOBILE FROM MATARANI, PERU, TO LA PAZ, BOLIVIA, INCIDENT TO YOUR TRANSFER FROM RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL, TO LA PAZ.

YOU SAY THAT ON MARCH 19, 1970, YOU APPLIED FOR A GOVERNMENT BILL OF LADING FOR SHIPMENT OF YOUR HOUSEHOLD GOODS AND PRIVATELY OWNED VEHICLE INCIDENT TO YOUR TRANSFER BUT NO ACTION WAS TAKEN WITH RESPECT TO THE VEHICLE PRIOR TO THE TIME THAT YOU ARRIVED IN LA PAZ ON MAY 11, 1970. YOU ALSO SAY THAT AFTER DISCUSSING THE MATTER WITH THE INSPECTOR GENERAL YOUR AUTOMOBILE WAS SHIPPED BY SEA VIA PANAMA TO MATARANI, PERU. ALTHOUGH IT ARRIVED IN THE FIRST WEEK OF DECEMBER 1970, YOU STATE THAT IT WAS NOT RECEIVED BY YOU IN LA PAZ UNTIL FEBRUARY 8, 1971, DUE TO CUSTOM DELAYS AND RAIL SHIPMENT PROBLEMS. YOUR CLAIM FOR REIMBURSEMENT OF THE COST OF THE RAIL SHIPMENT WAS DISALLOWED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY AND YOU HAVE REFERRED THE MATTER HERE FOR "EXAMINATION ON ITS MERITS" AS A CLAIM "ENTAILING ALLEGED MISCONSTRUCTION OF PUBLIC LAW OF THE UNITED STATES."

STATUTORY AUTHORITY FOR SHIPMENT OF MOTOR VEHICLES OF MEMBERS OF THE ARMED FORCES AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE IS CONTAINED IN 10 U.S.C. 2634 WHICH READS IN PERTINENT PART AS FOLLOWS:

"(A) WHEN A MEMBER OF AN ARMED FORCE IS ORDERED TO MAKE A CHANGE OF PERMANENT STATION, ONE MOTOR VEHICLE OWNED BY HIM AND FOR HIS PERSONAL USE OR THE USE OF HIS DEPENDENTS MAY, UNLESS A MOTOR VEHICLE OWNED BY HIM WAS TRANSPORTED IN ADVANCE OF THAT CHANGE OF PERMANENT STATION UNDER SECTION 406(H) OF TITLE 37, BE TRANSPORTED, AT THE EXPENSE OF THE UNITED STATES, TO HIS NEW STATION OR SUCH OTHER PLACE AS THE SECRETARY CONCERNED MAY AUTHORIZE -

"(1) ON A VESSEL OWNED, LEASED, OR CHARTERED BY THE UNITED STATES;

"(2) BY PRIVATELY OWNED AMERICAN SHIPPING SERVICES; OR

"(3) BY FOREIGN-FLAG SHIPPING SERVICES IF SHIPPING SERVICES DESCRIBED IN CLAUSES (1) AND (2) ARE NOT REASONABLY AVAILABLE."

THE ABOVE PROVISION OF LAW IS NOT SELF-EXECUTING BUT REQUIRES IMPLEMENTING REGULATIONS. SUCH REGULATIONS ARE CONTAINED IN VOLUME I OF THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS, PARAGRAPH M11000-2 OF WHICH PROVIDES THAT:

"AS USED IN THIS CHAPTER, THE TERM 'SHIPMENT' MEANS TRANSPORTATION BY VESSEL, INCLUDING PORT HANDLING CHARGES, TO, FROM, AND BETWEEN OVERSEAS PORTS, AND BETWEEN UNITED STATES PORTS WHEN INCIDENT TO CHANGES OF HOME YARDS AND HOME PORTS. THE TERM DOES NOT INCLUDE LAND TRANSPORTATION TO OR FROM SUCH PORTS, EXCEPT WHEN TRANSPORTATION OF PRIVATELY OWNED MOTOR VEHICLE IS AUTHORIZED BY 37 U.S.C. 554 AND IS IN ACCORDANCE WITH RELATED SERVICE REGULATIONS *** ."

PARAGRAPH 16-5, ARMY REGULATIONS 55-71, PROVIDES IN PERTINENT PART AS FOLLOWS:

"MILITARY PERSONNEL IN THE RANK OR GRADE INDICATED IN A BELOW ARE AUTHORIZED TRANSOCEAN SHIPMENT AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE OF ONE PRIVATELY OWNED VEHICLE FOR THE PERSONAL USE OF THE MEMBER PURSUANT TO PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION ORDERS INVOLVING MOVEMENT TO, FROM, OR BETWEEN OVERSEA COMMANDS. SUCH MOVEMENT IS AUTHORIZED FROM THE PORTS) SERVING OLD DUTY STATION TO THE PORTS) SERVING NEW DUTY STATION SUBJECT TO THE AVAILABILITY OF DIRECT OCEAN SERVICE *** . EXCEPT AS INDICATED IN C BELOW (PERSONS COMING UNDER THE MISSING PERSONS ACT), LAND TRANSPORTATION TO AND FROM PORTS OF EMBARKATION WILL BE AT NO EXPENSE TO THE GOVERNMENT."

THE ABOVE REGULATORY PROVISIONS CORRECTLY APPLY THE PROVISIONS OF 10 U.S.C. 2634 WHICH AUTHORIZE ONLY TRANSOCEAN SHIPMENT AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE OF A PRIVATELY OWNED VEHICLE OF MEMBERS OF THE UNIFORMED SERVICES. SEE 45 COMP. GEN. 608 (1966), COPY HEREWITH.

THERE BEING NO STATUTORY PROVISION FOR OVERLAND RAIL SHIPMENT OF PRIVATELY OWNED VEHICLES OF MEMBERS OF THE ARMED FORCES INCIDENT TO A CHANGE OF PERMANENT STATION, THERE IS NO AUTHORITY FOR PAYMENT TO YOU FROM PUBLIC FUNDS, THE COST OF SHIPMENT OF YOUR AUTOMOBILE FROM MATARANI, PERU, TO LA PAZ, BOLIVIA.