B-175718, SEP 7, 1972

B-175718: Sep 7, 1972

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WAS IN FORCE DURING MOST OF THE PERIOD UNDER CONSIDERATION IT DOES NOT PROVIDE A MANDATORY RIGHT TO NONTEMPORARY STORAGE OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS. IF THE STATUTORY AND REGULATORY CONDITIONS OTHERWISE ARE SATISFIED. THE EMPLOYING AGENCY WITHIN ITS DISCRETION MAY AUTHORIZE NONTEMPORARY STORAGE INCLUDING NONTEMPORARY STORAGE OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS IN STORAGE AT PERSONAL EXPENSE AT THE TIME STORAGE AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE IS AUTHORIZED. THE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY HAS ADVISED THAT "NO BONA FIDE ORDERS WERE ISSUED" AUTHORIZING NONTEMPORARY STORAGE OF THE HOUSEHOLD GOODS AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE PRIOR TO THE AUTHORIZATION OF JULY 12. GAO IS WITHOUT AUTHORITY TO PERMIT PAYMENT OF THIS CLAIM. MELLIS: FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF MARCH 21.

B-175718, SEP 7, 1972

CIVILIAN EMPLOYEE - HOUSEHOLD GOODS - NONTEMPORARY STORAGE - AUTHORIZATION REQUIRED DECISION DENYING CLAIM OF ALFRED A. MELLIS FOR REIMBURSEMENT OF EXPENSES INCURRED FOR NON-TEMPORARY STORAGE OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS BETWEEN JANUARY 1961 AND JULY 12, 1963, WHILE EMPLOYED OVERSEAS BY THE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY. ALTHOUGH SECTION 301(C) OF PUBLIC LAW 86-707, 5 U.S.C. 73B-1(E), WAS IN FORCE DURING MOST OF THE PERIOD UNDER CONSIDERATION IT DOES NOT PROVIDE A MANDATORY RIGHT TO NONTEMPORARY STORAGE OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS. IF THE STATUTORY AND REGULATORY CONDITIONS OTHERWISE ARE SATISFIED, THE EMPLOYING AGENCY WITHIN ITS DISCRETION MAY AUTHORIZE NONTEMPORARY STORAGE INCLUDING NONTEMPORARY STORAGE OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS IN STORAGE AT PERSONAL EXPENSE AT THE TIME STORAGE AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE IS AUTHORIZED. THE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY HAS ADVISED THAT "NO BONA FIDE ORDERS WERE ISSUED" AUTHORIZING NONTEMPORARY STORAGE OF THE HOUSEHOLD GOODS AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE PRIOR TO THE AUTHORIZATION OF JULY 12, 1963. SINCE UNDER THE TERMS OF THE GOVERNING LAW AND REGULATIONS NONTEMPORARY STORAGE AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE MUST BE SPECIFICALLY AUTHORIZED, GAO IS WITHOUT AUTHORITY TO PERMIT PAYMENT OF THIS CLAIM.

TO MR. ALFRED A. MELLIS:

FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF MARCH 21, 1972, CONCERNING YOUR CLAIM FOR REIMBURSEMENT OF THE EXPENSES YOU INCURRED FOR NONTEMPORARY STORAGE OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS BETWEEN JANUARY 1961 AND JULY 12, 1963, WHILE YOU WERE EMPLOYED OVERSEAS BY THE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY. YOU POINT OUT THAT REIMBURSEMENT FOR SIMILAR EXPENSES HAS BEEN ALLOWED FOR A PERIOD COMMENCING ON JULY 12, 1963, PURSUANT TO TRAVEL AUTHORIZATION ISSUED AT THAT TIME AND CONTEND THAT YOU SHOULD BE REIMBURSED EXPENSES INCURRED BEFORE THAT DATE BECAUSE CIRCUMSTANCES OF THE NONTEMPORARY STORAGE WERE IDENTICAL BOTH BEFORE AND AFTER THAT DATE.

BY OFFICE SETTLEMENT OF OCTOBER 5, 1971, YOU WERE AUTHORIZED REIMBURSEMENT OF $63 COVERING THE PREVIOUSLY UNREIMBURSED COSTS YOU INCURRED FOR NONTEMPORARY STORAGE OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS ON AND AFTER JULY 12, 1963, UNDER THE AUTHORIZATION OF THAT DATE. THAT PART OF YOUR CLAIM COVERING REIMBURSEMENT FOR THE COSTS OF NONTEMPORARY STORAGE FOR THE PERIOD FROM JULY 1957 THROUGH JANUARY 13, 1961, WAS NOT CONSIDERED FOR REIMBURSEMENT AS IT WAS BARRED UNDER THE 10-YEAR STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS, THE ACT OF OCTOBER 9, 1940, 54 STAT. 1061, 31 U.S.C. 71A, YOUR CLAIM HAVING BEEN RECEIVED IN OUR OFFICE ON JANUARY 14, 1971. FURTHER, REIMBURSEMENT OF THE COST YOU INCURRED FOR NONTEMPORARY STORAGE FOR THE PERIOD JANUARY 14, 1961, THROUGH JULY 11, 1963, WAS DISALLOWED ON THE GROUND THAT SUCH STORAGE HAD NOT BEEN AUTHORIZED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY UNTIL JULY 12, 1963.

THE RECORD SHOWS THAT ON JUNE 28, 1957, A PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION TRAVEL ORDER WAS ISSUED AUTHORIZING YOUR TRAVEL FROM BROOKLYN, NEW YORK, TO LEGHORN, ITALY. THAT TRAVEL ORDER ALSO AUTHORIZED THE TRANSPORTATION OF HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS NOT TO EXCEED 8,750 POUNDS GROSS WEIGHT. BY TRAVEL ORDER DATED JULY 10, 1958, YOU WERE AUTHORIZED TO TRAVEL FROM IRAKLION, CRETE, TO KARAMURSEL, TURKEY, INCIDENT TO A PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION. THIS TRAVEL ORDER ALSO AUTHORIZED SHIPMENT OF 8,750 POUNDS GROSS WEIGHT OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS. AT THE TIME OF THOSE TRANSFERS THERE WAS NO STATUTORY AUTHORITY PERMITTING NONTEMPORARY STORAGE AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS BELONGING TO CIVILIAN EMPLOYEES.

STATUTORY AUTHORITY FOR NONTEMPORARY STORAGE WAS PROVIDED BY SECTION 301(C) OF PUBLIC LAW 86-707, APPROVED SEPTEMBER 6, 1960, 74 STAT. 796, 5 U.S.C. 73B-1(E) (NOW CODIFIED IN 5 U.S.C. 5726(B)), WHICH PRESCRIBED STATUTORY CONDITIONS, CRITERIA, AND CIRCUMSTANCES UNDER WHICH THE GOVERNMENT WOULD PAY OR REIMBURSE OFFICERS OR EMPLOYEES FOR THE EXPENSES OF NONTEMPORARY STORAGE OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS AND PERSONAL EFFECTS. SUBSECTION 3.4(B) OF BUREAU OF THE BUDGET CIRCULAR NO. A-56, EFFECTIVE JUNE 1, 1962, TO WHICH YOU REFER AND THE PRIOR REGULATION CONTAINED IN BUREAU OF THE BUDGET CIRCULAR NO. A-4, AS AMENDED BY TRANSMITTAL MEMORANDUM NO. 2 OF APRIL 3, 1961, IMPLEMENTED THE PROVISIONS OF PUBLIC LAW 86-707.

ALTHOUGH THE CITED STATUTE AND REGULATIONS WERE IN FORCE DURING MOST OF THE PERIOD UNDER CONSIDERATION THEY DO NOT PROVIDE A MANDATORY RIGHT TO NONTEMPORARY STORAGE OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS. IF THE STATUTORY AND REGULATORY CONDITIONS OTHERWISE ARE SATISFIED, THE EMPLOYING AGENCY WITHIN ITS DISCRETION MAY AUTHORIZE NONTEMPORARY STORAGE INCLUDING NONTEMPORARY STORAGE OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS IN STORAGE AT PERSONAL EXPENSE AT THE TIME STORAGE AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE IS AUTHORIZED. THE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY HAS ADVISED OUR OFFICE THAT "NO BONA FIDE ORDERS WERE ISSUED" AUTHORIZING NONTEMPORARY STORAGE OF YOUR HOUSEHOLD GOODS AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE PRIOR TO THE AUTHORIZATION OF JULY 12, 1963. THAT AUTHORIZATION WAS NOT RETROACTIVELY EFFECTIVE AND THE DEPARTMENT HAS NOT OTHERWISE AUTHORIZED NONTEMPORARY STORAGE OF YOUR HOUSEHOLD GOODS FOR ANY PERIOD PRIOR TO JULY 12, 1963. SINCE UNDER THE TERMS OF THE GOVERNING LAW AND REGULATIONS NONTEMPORARY STORAGE AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE MUST BE SPECIFICALLY AUTHORIZED, WE ARE WITHOUT AUTHORITY TO PERMIT PAYMENT OF YOUR CLAIM.

THEREFORE, THE SETTLEMENT OF OCTOBER 5, 1971, IS SUSTAINED.