B-174997, APR 21, 1972

B-174997: Apr 21, 1972

Additional Materials:

Contact:

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

 

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

THE PROVISIONS OF LAW WHICH WOULD OTHERWISE ENTITLE A TRANSFERRED EMPLOYEE TO HIS FORMER BASIC PAY RATE (5 U.S.C. 5337) AND TO REIMBURSEMENT OF TRAVEL AND TRANSPORTATION EXPENSES (5 U.S.C. 5724) ARE EXPRESSLY INAPPLICABLE WHEN THE TRANSFER IS VOLUNTARILY REQUESTED FOR PERSONAL CONVENIENCE. NOONAN'S CLAIM WAS CORRECT AND IS SUSTAINED. NOONAN: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTERS OF OCTOBER 14. WHICH WILL BE VIEWED AS AN APPEAL TO THE SETTLEMENT OF OUR CLAIMS DIVISION. YOU WERE INFORMED THAT YOU COULD BE CONSIDERED FOR A TRANSFER AT GRADE GS-11. OUR CLAIMS DIVISION FOUND THAT THE TRANSFER WAS AT YOUR REQUEST AND FOR YOUR CONVENIENCE AND THEREFORE DISALLOWED YOUR CLAIM AS HAVING NO BASIS IN LAW.

B-174997, APR 21, 1972

CIVILIAN EMPLOYEE - VOLUNTARY TRANSFER - DISPUTED SALARY RATE - TRAVEL AND TRANSPORTATION EXPENSES - ENTITLEMENT DECISION SUSTAINING PRIOR DISALLOWANCE OF A CLAIM OF ROBERT J. NOONAN FOR SALARY ADJUSTMENT AND REINSTATEMENT AT HIS PRIOR GRADE LEVEL INCIDENT TO HIS VOLUNTARY TRANSFER AS AN EMPLOYEE OF THE INTERNAL REVENUE SERVICE. THE PROVISIONS OF LAW WHICH WOULD OTHERWISE ENTITLE A TRANSFERRED EMPLOYEE TO HIS FORMER BASIC PAY RATE (5 U.S.C. 5337) AND TO REIMBURSEMENT OF TRAVEL AND TRANSPORTATION EXPENSES (5 U.S.C. 5724) ARE EXPRESSLY INAPPLICABLE WHEN THE TRANSFER IS VOLUNTARILY REQUESTED FOR PERSONAL CONVENIENCE. ACCORDINGLY, THE PRIOR DISALLOWANCE OF MR. NOONAN'S CLAIM WAS CORRECT AND IS SUSTAINED.

TO MR. ROBERT J. NOONAN:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTERS OF OCTOBER 14, 1971, FEBRUARY 24 AND MARCH 21, 1972, WHICH WILL BE VIEWED AS AN APPEAL TO THE SETTLEMENT OF OUR CLAIMS DIVISION, DATED OCTOBER 6, 1971, THAT DISALLOWED YOUR CLAIM FOR SALARY ADJUSTMENT AND REINSTATEMENT TO YOUR FORMER GRADE GS 12 POSITION WITH THE INTERNAL REVENUE SERVICE.

THE RECORD SHOWS THAT BECAUSE OF YOUR LATE WIFE'S ILL HEALTH AND THE ADVICE OF HER DOCTOR TO SEEK A WARMER CLIMATE, YOU VISITED THE SAN FRANCISCO DISTRICT OFFICE OF THE INTERNAL REVENUE SERVICE IN JULY 1968 AND SPOKE TO AN OFFICIAL OF THE AUDIT DIVISION REGARDING YOUR DESIRE TO TRANSFER FROM THE CHICAGO DISTRICT TO THE WEST COAST. YOU WERE INFORMED THAT YOU COULD BE CONSIDERED FOR A TRANSFER AT GRADE GS-11. ON FEBRUARY 19, 1969, YOU SENT A MEMORANDUM TO THE PERSONNEL BRANCH OF THE SAN FRANCISCO DISTRICT OFFICE REQUESTING A REDUCTION IN GRADE TO GS 11 IN ORDER TO FACILITATE YOUR TRANSFER TO SAN FRANCISCO WHICH BECAME EFFECTIVE APRIL 20, 1969, AT THE TOP STEP OF GRADE GS-11. BECAUSE OF THIS REQUEST ON YOUR PART AND YOUR AGREEMENT TO ACCEPT A LOWER GRADE, OUR CLAIMS DIVISION FOUND THAT THE TRANSFER WAS AT YOUR REQUEST AND FOR YOUR CONVENIENCE AND THEREFORE DISALLOWED YOUR CLAIM AS HAVING NO BASIS IN LAW.

IN THAT REGARD WE POINT OUT THAT 5 U.S.C. 5337 PROVIDES IN PERTINENT PART THAT AN EMPLOYEE:

"(A)(3) WHOSE REDUCTION IN GRADE IS NOT (A) CAUSED BY A DEMOTION FOR PERSONAL CAUSE, (B) AT HIS REQUEST ***

IS ENTITLED TO BASIC PAY AT THE RATE TO WHICH HE WAS ENTITLED IMMEDIATELY BEFORE THE REDUCTION IN GRADE (INCLUDING EACH INCREASE IN RATE OF BASIC PAY PROVIDED BY STATUTE) FOR A PERIOD OF 2 YEARS FROM THE EFFECTIVE DATE OF THE REDUCTION IN GRADE, SO LONG AS HE -

"(C) IS NOT DEMOTED OR REASSIGNED (I) FOR PERSONAL CAUSE, (II) AT HIS REQUEST *** ."

THUS, SINCE THE DEMOTION WAS AT YOUR REQUEST, SAVED PAY IS SPECIFICALLY PRECLUDED UNDER THESE PROVISIONS OF THE LAW.

WITH RESPECT TO YOUR CLAIM FOR REIMBURSEMENT OF YOUR TRAVEL AND TRANSPORTATION EXPENSES, THE APPLICABLE PROVISION OF 5 U.S.C. 5724 IS AS FOLLOWS:

"(H) WHEN A TRANSFER IS MADE PRIMARILY FOR THE CONVENIENCE OR BENEFIT OF AN EMPLOYEE *** OR AT HIS REQUEST, HIS EXPENSES OF TRAVEL AND TRANSPORTATION AND THE EXPENSES OF TRANSPORTING, PACKING, CRATING, TEMPORARILY STORING, DRAYING, AND UNPACKING OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS AND PERSONAL EFFECTS MAY NOT BE ALLOWED OR PAID FROM GOVERNMENT FUNDS."

THIS PROVISION OF THE LAW PRECLUDES PAYMENT OF YOUR TRAVEL AND TRANSPORTATION EXPENSES SINCE THE TRANSFER WAS FOR YOUR CONVENIENCE AND BENEFIT AND AT YOUR REQUEST.

AS TO YOUR ALLEGATIONS THAT OTHER EMPLOYEES OF YOUR AGENCY WERE TRANSFERRED AT THE SAME GRADE AND WERE REIMBURSED FOR TRAVEL AND TRANSPORTATION EXPENSES, WE POINT OUT THAT THE FACTS REPORTED BY YOU DO NOT INDICATE THAT SUCH TRANSFERS WERE MADE PRIMARILY AT THEIR REQUEST AND FOR THE CONVENIENCE OF THE EMPLOYEES INVOLVED.

SINCE THE RECORD CLEARLY INDICATES THAT YOUR TRANSFER WAS AT YOUR REQUEST AND FOR YOUR CONVENIENCE, THE LAW PRECLUDES PAYMENT OF YOUR CLAIM. ACCORDINGLY, THE ACTION TAKEN IN OUR SETTLEMENT OF OCTOBER 6, 1971, IN DISALLOWING YOUR CLAIM WAS CORRECT AND IS HEREBY SUSTAINED.