B-177930, MAR 27, 1973

B-177930: Mar 27, 1973

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WHICH IS ONLY TEMPORARY PENDING ACTION ON HIS APPLICATION FOR PERMANENT RESIDENCE BY THE CANADIAN GOVERNMENT. SINCE THE PERMANENT STATION IS WITHIN THE UNITED STATES. UNDER THESE CIRCUMSTANCES TRANSPORTATION OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS IS REIMBURSEABLE EITHER AT THE COMMUTED RATE FROM HIS OLD TO HIS NEW PERMANENT STATION OR ON A ACTUAL EXPENSE BASIS TO HIS NEW CANADIAN RESIDENCE. WEIMER WAS AUTHORIZED. WEIMER PURCHASED OR WILL PURCHASE A HOME IN FORT ERIE. 082.55 FOR 30 DAYS TEMPORARY QUARTERS IN BUFFALO AND WHETHER HE WILL BE ENTITLED TO REIMBURSEMENT FOR MOVING AND REAL ESTATE EXPENSES IF HE CLAIMS SUCH IN THE FUTURE. MY APPLICATION IS CURRENTLY PENDING AND I AM STILL IN TEMPORARY QUARTERS. ISSUED BY THE OFFICE OF MANAGEMENT AND BUDGET STATES THAT SUCH IS PERMITTED FOR A PERIOD OF NOT MORE THAN 30 CONSECUTIVE DAYS WHEN THE EMPLOYEE'S NEW OFFICIAL STATION IS LOCATED IN THE 50 STATES.

B-177930, MAR 27, 1973

CIVILIAN PAY - CHANGE OF STATION CANADIAN RESIDENCE - TEMPORARY QUARTERS ALLOWANCE - REAL ESTATE EXPENSES - HOUSEHOLD GOODS SHIPMENT DECISION ALLOWING THE CLAIM OF THOMAS D. WEIMER, AN EMPLOYEE OF THE INTERNAL REVENUE SERVICE, FOR A TEMPORARY QUARTERS ALLOWANCE INCIDENT TO HIS TRANSFER OF OFFICIAL STATION FROM ST. LOUIS, MO., TO BUFFALO, N.Y. AND ALLOWING THE FUTURE PAYMENT OF REAL ESTATE EXPENSES AND SHIPMENTS OF HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS TO HIS NEW RESIDENCE AT FT. ERIE, CANADA. AN EMPLOYEE, WHO COMMUTES FROM HIS FUTURE PERMANENT RESIDENCE IN CANADA, WHICH IS ONLY TEMPORARY PENDING ACTION ON HIS APPLICATION FOR PERMANENT RESIDENCE BY THE CANADIAN GOVERNMENT, TO HIS NEW PERMANENT STATION WITHIN THE UNITED STATES, MAY BE PAID 30 DAYS TEMPORARY QUARTERS ALLOWANCE, OMB CIRCULAR NO. A-56, SECTION 1.2. MOREOVER, REAL ESTATE EXPENSES MAY BE PAID FOR THE PURCHASE OF SUCH A RESIDENCE, SINCE THE PERMANENT STATION IS WITHIN THE UNITED STATES, OMB CIRCULAR NO. A 56, SECTION 4.1A. FINALLY, UNDER THESE CIRCUMSTANCES TRANSPORTATION OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS IS REIMBURSEABLE EITHER AT THE COMMUTED RATE FROM HIS OLD TO HIS NEW PERMANENT STATION OR ON A ACTUAL EXPENSE BASIS TO HIS NEW CANADIAN RESIDENCE. SEE OMB CIRCULAR NO. A-56, SECTION 6.3C.

TO MISS ESTHER SACKIN:

WE REFER TO YOUR LETTER DATED JANUARY 26, 1973, REFERENCE AD:FF, ENCLOSING A VOUCHER IN FAVOR OF THOMAS D. WEIMER IN THE AMOUNT OF $1,082.55, REPRESENTING AN ALLOWANCE FOR TEMPORARY QUARTERS INCIDENT TO HIS TRANSFER OF OFFICIAL STATION TO BUFFALO, NEW YORK, AND REQUESTING A DECISION AS TO WHETHER THE VOUCHER MAY BE CERTIFIED FOR PAYMENT IN VIEW OF THE CIRCUMSTANCES HEREINAFTER RELATED. ALSO, YOU ASK CERTAIN OTHER QUESTIONS REGARDING PAYMENT OF REAL ESTATE EXPENSES, AND EXPENSES OF SHIPMENT OF HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS.

YOU STATE THAT ON OCTOBER 19, 1972, MR. WEIMER WAS AUTHORIZED, IN CONNECTION WITH A PERMANENT TRANSFER OF DUTY, TO TRAVEL FROM ST. LOUIS, MISSOURI, TO BUFFALO. APPARENTLY HIS ORDERS ALSO INTENDED TO AUTHORIZE AN ALLOWANCE FOR TEMPORARY QUARTERS; AN ALLOWANCE FOR MISCELLANEOUS MOVING EXPENSES; TRANSPORTATION OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS; AND AN ALLOWANCE FOR REAL ESTATE TRANSACTIONS. IN ADDITION YOU STATE THAT PAYMENT HAS BEEN MADE FOR TRANSPORTATION BETWEEN ST. LOUIS AND BUFFALO AND FOR A HOUSE HUNTING TRIP IN THE BUFFALO AREA. HOWEVER, SINCE MR. WEIMER PURCHASED OR WILL PURCHASE A HOME IN FORT ERIE, CANADA, RATHER THAN IN THE CONTINENTAL UNITED STATES YOU QUESTION WHETHER HE MAY BE REIMBURSED $1,082.55 FOR 30 DAYS TEMPORARY QUARTERS IN BUFFALO AND WHETHER HE WILL BE ENTITLED TO REIMBURSEMENT FOR MOVING AND REAL ESTATE EXPENSES IF HE CLAIMS SUCH IN THE FUTURE.

IN JUSTIFICATION OF THE CLAIM FOR TEMPORARY QUARTERS THE FOLLOWING STATEMENT APPEARS ON THE EMPLOYEE'S VOUCHER:

LOCATED HOME FOR SALE IN FORT ERIE, ONTARIO, CANADA WHILE ON HOUSEHUNTING TRIP OF OCTOBER 30 THRU NOVEMBER 5, 1972. CANADIAN LAW CHANGED NOVEMBER 4, 1972 WHICH NOW REQUIRES NON-CITIZENS TO APPLY FROM OUTSIDE OF COUNTRY. PRIOR TO THIS CHANGE IN LAW, NON-CITIZENS OF CANADA COULD ENTER COUNTRY WITH HOUSEHOLD FURNISHINGS AND MAKE APPLICATION FOR PERMANENT RESIDENCE. MY APPLICATION IS CURRENTLY PENDING AND I AM STILL IN TEMPORARY QUARTERS.

CONCERNING REIMBURSEMENT FOR SUBSISTENCE WHILE OCCUPYING TEMPORARY QUARTERS SECTION 8.2A OF CIRCULAR NO. A-56, ISSUED BY THE OFFICE OF MANAGEMENT AND BUDGET STATES THAT SUCH IS PERMITTED FOR A PERIOD OF NOT MORE THAN 30 CONSECUTIVE DAYS WHEN THE EMPLOYEE'S NEW OFFICIAL STATION IS LOCATED IN THE 50 STATES, THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, UNITED STATES TERRITORIES AND POSSESSIONS, OR PUERTO RICO. SECTION 1.2 DEFINES "OFFICIAL STATION" AS FOLLOWS:

"OFFICIAL STATION" OR "POST OF DUTY" MEANS THE BUILDING OR OTHER PLACE WHERE THE OFFICER OR EMPLOYEE REGULARLY REPORTS FOR DUTY. (FOR ELIGIBILITY FOR CHANGE OF STATION ALLOWANCES SEE 1.1C AND 1.6).

WITH RESPECT TO ENTITLEMENT UNDER THESE REGULATIONS RELATING TO THE RESIDENCE AND THE HOUSEHOLD GOODS AND PERSONAL EFFECTS OF AN EMPLOYEE, OFFICIAL STATION OR POST OF DUTY ALSO MEANS THE RESIDENCE OR OTHER QUARTERS FROM WHICH THE EMPLOYEE REGULARLY COMMUTES TO AND FROM WORK, EXCEPT THAT WHERE THE OFFICIAL STATION OR POST OF DUTY IS IN A REMOTE AREA WHERE ADEQUATE FAMILY HOUSING IS NOT AVAILABLE WITHIN REASONABLE DAILY COMMUTING DISTANCE THEN RESIDENCE INCLUDES THE DWELLING WHERE THE FAMILY OF THE EMPLOYEE RESIDES OR WILL RESIDE, BUT ONLY IF SUCH RESIDENCE REASONABLY RELATES TO THE OFFICIAL STATION AS DETERMINED BY AN APPROPRIATE ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICIAL.

PRIMARILY, THE ABOVE DEFINITION IS INTENDED TO BE USED IN CONNECTION WITH COMPUTATIONS OF MILEAGE AND HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS EXPENSES. SO FAR AS CONCERNS THE TEMPORARY QUARTERS ALLOWANCE THE REGULATIONS IN REGARD THERETO ARE NOT CONCERNED WITH THE LOCATION WHERE THE EMPLOYEE WILL SELECT HIS PERMANENT QUARTERS. MOREOVER, WE BELIEVE HIS JUSTIFICATION FOR THE USE OF TEMPORARY QUARTERS TO THE EXTENT OF 30 DAYS IS REASONABLE. THE FACT THAT HE MAY HAVE BEEN ABLE TO PURCHASE A HOUSE IN THE UNITED STATES FOR OCCUPANCY AT AN EARLIER DATE SO AS TO REDUCE THE TIME NECESSARY FOR OCCUPANCY OF TEMPORARY QUARTERS IS NOT DEEMED MATERIAL. ACCORDINGLY, THE TEMPORARY QUARTERS ALLOWANCE FOR 30 DAYS APPEARS PROPER.

AS TO ALLOWANCE OF EXPENSES CONNECTED WITH A PURCHASE OF A HOME IN FORT ERIE, CANADA, WE NOTE THAT SUCH LOCATION IS DIRECTLY ACROSS THE NIAGARA RIVER FROM BUFFALO AND IS QUITE LIKELY CLOSER TO THE INTERNAL REVENUE SERVICE OFFICE IN BUFFALO THAN MANY OF THE HOMES IN THE UNITED STATES FROM WHICH EMPLOYEES OF THAT OFFICE COMMUTE. SECTION 4.1A OF CIRCULAR NO. A-56 INDICATES THAT REIMBURSEMENT FOR EXPENSES INCURRED IN CONNECTION WITH CERTAIN RESIDENCE TRANSACTION IS ALLOWABLE ONLY IF AN EMPLOYEE'S NEW AND OLD OFFICIAL STATIONS ARE IN THE "50 STATES." SINCE THE ACTUAL PLACE OF PERMANENT DUTY OF THE EMPLOYEE IS IN THE UNITED STATES WE SEE NO REASON WHY THE EXPENSES OF A PURCHASE OF RESIDENCE IN FORT ERIE, CANADA, WOULD NOT BE ALLOWABLE.

CONCERNING TRANSPORTATION OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS YOU INDICATE THAT IF THE EXPENSES THEREOF ARE REIMBURSABLE A FURTHER QUESTION ARISES AS TO THE COMMUTED RATE TO BE USED IN THE COMPUTATION OF THE AMOUNT PAYABLE INASMUCH AS THE RATES SPECIFIED IN GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION REGULATIONS ONLY APPLY TO LOCATIONS IN THE CONTINENTAL UNITED STATES. SINCE THE EMPLOYEE'S NEW OFFICIAL DUTY STATION AT BUFFALO EMBRACES FORT ERIE, CANADA, HE WOULD BE ENTITLED TO REIMBURSEMENT OF THE EXPENSES INCURRED IN TRANSPORTING HIS HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS TO FORT ERIE. HOWEVER, IF THE COMMUTED RATE METHOD OF REIMBURSEMENT IS TO BE USED THE ONLY RATE CONTAINED IN THE REGULATIONS THAT WOULD BE APPLICABLE IS THE ONE PERTAINING TO BUFFALO. IT MAY BE THAT SHIPMENT OF THE EFFECTS COULD BE MADE ON AN ACTUAL EXPENSES BASIS IN WHICH EVENT WE SEE NO OBJECTION TO PAYMENT OF SUCH EXPENSES TO FORT ERIE. SEE SECTION 6.3C OF CIRCULAR NO. A-56.

THE VOUCHER FOR $1,082.55 IS RETURNED HEREWITH AND MAY BE CERTIFIED FOR PAYMENT IF OTHERWISE CORRECT.