B-179690, APR 23, 1974

B-179690: Apr 23, 1974

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MILEAGE FROM TRAVIS AFB TO FORT EUSTIS IS PAYABLE IN ACCORD WITH ITEM 3. SPECIALIST MURPHY WAS TRANSFERRED ON A PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION FROM CAMP HUMPHRYS. THE PRIOR ORDERS WERE CHANGED TO INDICATE THAT TRAVEL BY GOVERNMENT AIRCRAFT WAS AUTHORIZED BUT NOT DIRECTED AND THAT LAND TRAVEL IN THE CONTINENTAL UNITED STATES WOULD BE LIMITED TO THAT FROM TRAVIS AIR FORCE BASE. YOU INDICATE THAT THE MEMBER'S AIRLINE TICKET WAS NOT ITEMIZED AND. YOU HAVE NO WAY OF SEPARATING THE OVERWATER TRAVEL COST FROM SEOUL TO SEATTLE. SUCH CIRCUMSTANCES YOU ARE IN DOUBT AS TO WHETHER THE MEMBER IS ENTITLED TO THE $171 COST TO THE GOVERNMENT FOR TRANSOCEANIC TRAVEL AND $0.06 PER MILE FROM TRAVIS AIR FORCE BASE TO FORT EUSTIS (WHICH THE MEMBER SAYS THE TRANSPORTATION OFFICER IN KOREA SAID HE WOULD RECEIVE).

B-179690, APR 23, 1974

MEMBER ON PCS FROM CAMP HUMPHRYS, KOREA, TO FORT EUSTIS, VIRGINIA, AUTHORIZED BUT NOT DIRECTED TO USE GOVERNMENT TRANSPORTATION FOR OVERSEAS TRAVEL, AND LIMITED TO MILEAGE ALLOWANCE FOR OVERLAND TRAVEL IN UNITED STATES TO DISTANCE FROM TRAVIS AFB, CALIFORNIA, TO NEW STATION, WHO UTILIZED COMMERCIAL AIR FROM SEOUL, KOREA, TO NEW YORK, N.Y., VIA SEATTLE, WASHINGTON, COST OF OVERSEAS PORTION OF HIS FARE NOT DETERMINABLE, MAY BE ALLOWED MAC COST FROM SEOUL TO TRAVIS AFB, SINCE COST OF COMMERCIAL AIR FROM SEOUL TO SAN FRANCISCO, LOS ANGELES, OR SEATTLE WOULD EXCEED MAC RATE FROM SEOUL TO TRAVIS AFB (SEE PAR. M4159 4A, JTR), AND MILEAGE FROM TRAVIS AFB TO FORT EUSTIS IS PAYABLE IN ACCORD WITH ITEM 3, PAR. M4159-1, JTR, AND MEMBER'S ORDERS.

TO MAJ. J. R. HAMPTON:

YOUR LETTER OF JUNE 28, 1973, WITH ENCLOSURES, FILE REFERENCE AHBE-FA PT, FORWARDED TO THIS OFFICE BY ENDORSEMENT OF SEPTEMBER 11, 1973, OF THE PER DIEM, TRAVEL AND TRANSPORTATION ALLOWANCE COMMITTEE (CONTROL NO. 73-43), REQUESTS A DECISION CONCERNING THE CLAIM OF SPECIALIST FOURTH CLASS GLENN W. MURPHY FOR A TRANSPORTATION ALLOWANCE.

BY ORDERS DATED APRIL 17, 1973, SPECIALIST MURPHY WAS TRANSFERRED ON A PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION FROM CAMP HUMPHRYS, KOREA, TO FORT EUSTIS, VIRGINIA. THE ORDERS PROVIDED THAT THE MEMBER WOULD REPORT FOR MILITARY AIRLIFT COMMAND (MAC) TRANSPORTATION TO THE CONTINENTAL UNITED STATES. ORDERS DATED APRIL 27, 1973, THE PRIOR ORDERS WERE CHANGED TO INDICATE THAT TRAVEL BY GOVERNMENT AIRCRAFT WAS AUTHORIZED BUT NOT DIRECTED AND THAT LAND TRAVEL IN THE CONTINENTAL UNITED STATES WOULD BE LIMITED TO THAT FROM TRAVIS AIR FORCE BASE, CALIFORNIA, TO THE NEW DUTY STATION, AND THAT ALL OTHER EXPENSES INCURRED AS A RESULT OF THIS TRAVEL WOULD BE AT THE MEMBER'S EXPENSE AND NONREIMBURSABLE. FROM THE RECORD IT APPEARS THAT SPECIALIST MURPHY FLEW AT PERSONAL EXPENSE ($251) ON A COMMERCIAL AIRLINE ON OR ABOUT MAY 9, 1973, FROM SEOUL, KOREA, TO NEW YORK, NEW YORK, VIA SEATTLE, WASHINGTON.

YOU INDICATE THAT THE MEMBER'S AIRLINE TICKET WAS NOT ITEMIZED AND, THEREFORE, YOU HAVE NO WAY OF SEPARATING THE OVERWATER TRAVEL COST FROM SEOUL TO SEATTLE, FROM THE OVERLAND COST FROM SEATTLE TO NEW YORK. SUCH CIRCUMSTANCES YOU ARE IN DOUBT AS TO WHETHER THE MEMBER IS ENTITLED TO THE $171 COST TO THE GOVERNMENT FOR TRANSOCEANIC TRAVEL AND $0.06 PER MILE FROM TRAVIS AIR FORCE BASE TO FORT EUSTIS (WHICH THE MEMBER SAYS THE TRANSPORTATION OFFICER IN KOREA SAID HE WOULD RECEIVE), OR TO THE $251 COST OF COMMERCIAL TRANSPORTATION FROM SEOUL TO NEW YORK AND $0.06 PER MILE FROM THERE TO FORT EUSTIS.

IN ENDORSING YOUR REQUEST FOR ADVANCE DECISION, THE EXECUTIVE, PER DIEM, TRAVEL AND TRANSPORTATION ALLOWANCE COMMITTEE STATED THAT THE COMMITTEE HAD BEEN INFORMED BY NORTHWEST ORIENT AIRLINES THAT FLIGHTS WERE AVAILABLE FROM SEOUL TO SEATTLE, LOS ANGELES, OR SAN FRANCISCO AT THE RATE OF $175 TO MILITARY PERSONNEL WHO HAD SERVED IN THE ORIENT AND WERE TRANSFERRING TO THE UNITED STATES. IT THUS APPEARED TO HIM THAT EVEN THOUGH SPECIALIST MURPHY HAD PURCHASED A THROUGH AIRLINE TICKET TO NEW YORK, HE WAS ENTITLED UNDER PARAGRAPH M4159, JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS (JTR) TO THE COMMERCIAL AIR FARE HE WOULD HAVE PAID FOR TRAVEL FROM SEOUL TO SAN FRANCISCO, NOT TO EXCEED THE MAC FARE BETWEEN THESE POINTS, AND MILEAGE FROM TRAVIS AIR FORCE BASE TO FORT EUSTIS.

SECTION 404 OF TITLE 37, U.S. CODE, CONTAINS THE STATUTORY AUTHORITY FOR PAYMENT OF TRAVEL AND TRANSPORTATION ALLOWANCES. THE STATUTE DELEGATES AUTHORITY TO THE SECRETARIES TO PRESCRIBE REGULATIONS GOVERNING THESE ALLOWANCES. IN ACCORD WITH THIS AUTHORITY PARAGRAPH M4159, JTR, PROVIDES IN PART:

"1. GENERAL. EXCEPT AS SPECIFICALLY PROVIDED IN SUBPARS. 2 AND 3, A MEMBER TRAVELING UNDER PERMANENT CHANGE-OF-STATION ORDERS (INCLUDING SEPARATION FROM THE SERVICE OR RELIEF FROM ACTIVE DUTY) TO, FROM, OR BETWEEN POINTS OUTSIDE THE UNITED STATES, WHICH ORDERS DO NOT SPECIFY GROUP TRAVEL OR DIRECT TRAVEL BY A SPECIFIC MODE OF TRANSPORTATION WILL BE ENTITLED TO:

"1. THE ALLOWANCES PRESCRIBED IN PAR. M4150 OR M4154, AS APPLICABLE, FOR THE OFFICIAL DISTANCE BETWEEN THE OLD PERMANENT STATION AND THE APPROPRIATE AERIAL OR WATER PORT OF EMBARKATION SERVING THE OLD DUTY STATION;

"2. TRANSPORTATION BY GOVERNMENT AIRCRAFT OR VESSEL, IF AVAILABLE, OTHERWISE GOVERNMENT PROCURED TRANSPORTATION OR REIMBURSEMENT FOR TRANSPORTATION PROCURED AT PERSONAL EXPENSE FOR THE TRANSOCEANIC TRAVEL INVOLVED (SEE SUBPAR. 4), PLUS PER DIEM, IF APPLICABLE, IN ACCORDANCE WITH PART F; AND

"3. THE ALLOWANCES PRESCRIBED IN PAR. M4150 OR M4154, AS APPLICABLE, FOR THE OFFICIAL DISTANCE BETWEEN THE APPROPRIATE AERIAL OR WATER PORT OF DEBARKATION SERVING THE NEW STATION AND THE NEW PERMANENT STATION."

THE EXCEPTIONS IN SUBPARAGRAPHS 2 AND 3 ARE NOT APPLICABLE IN THIS CASE. SUBPARAGRAPH M4159-4A, PROVIDES IN PART THAT WHEN TRAVEL BY GOVERNMENT TRANSPORTATION IS AUTHORIZED (AS DISTINGUISHED FROM DIRECTED) AND THE MEMBER PERFORMS TRANSOCEANIC TRAVEL BY ANOTHER MODE OF TRANSPORTATION AT PERSONAL EXPENSE, THE MEMBER IS ENTITLED TO REIMBURSEMENT FOR THE COST OF THE TRANSPORTATION UTILIZED NOT TO EXCEED THE APPLICABLE TARIFF CHARGE WHICH THE SPONSORING SERVICE WOULD HAVE BEEN REQUIRED TO PAY FOR THE AVAILABLE GOVERNMENT TRANSPORTATION.

IN DECISION B-178167, AUGUST 17, 1973 (53 COMP. GEN. 105), WE STATED THAT IN THE ABSENCE OF DIRECTION TO USE GOVERNMENT TRANSPORTATION TO THE ACTUAL PORT OF DEBARKATION, NEW YORK, NEW YORK, OR OF PROVISION OF LAW REQUIRING US TO CONSIDER THAT THE OVERSEAS PORTION OF THE MEMBER'S COMMERCIAL TRAVEL TERMINATED THERE AND NOT AT TRAVIS AIR FORCE BASE, THE APPROPRIATE PORT OF DEBARKATION, IT WAS OUR VIEW THAT THE OVERSEAS TRAVEL WAS TO BE REGARDED AS HAVING TERMINATED AT TRAVIS AIR FORCE BASE, AND TRANSPORTATION TO NEW YORK WAS NOT REGARDED AS PART OF THE OVERSEAS TRAVEL.

THE RECORD INDICATES THAT FROM SEOUL, KOREA, TRAVIS AIR FORCE BASE IS THE POINT OF DEBARKATION SERVING THE MEMBER'S NEW STATION AND THAT MAC FLIGHTS WERE AVAILABLE ON OR ABOUT MAY 9, 1973, FROM SEOUL TO TRAVIS AIR FORCE BASE AT A COST OF $171.

ALTHOUGH THE COST OF COMMERCIAL AIR FROM SEOUL TO TRAVIS AIR FORCE BASE CANNOT BE DETERMINED FROM THE $251 TOTAL COST OF COMMERCIAL AIR FROM SEOUL TO NEW YORK VIA SEATTLE, IN VIEW OF INFORMATION THAT COMMERCIAL AIR FROM SEOUL TO SUCH POINTS AS LOS ANGELES, SAN FRANCISCO, OR SEATTLE WOULD HAVE COST THE MEMBER $175, IT APPEARS THAT THE COST OF COMMERCIAL AIR TRAVEL FROM SEOUL TO TRAVIS AIR FORCE BASE WOULD HAVE EXCEEDED THE MAC RATE OF $171. IN SUCH CIRCUMSTANCES, $171 REIMBURSEMENT FOR TRANSOCEANIC TRAVEL MAY BE AUTHORIZED AS PROVIDED IN PARAGRAPH M4159-4A, JTR.

IN ACCORD WITH ITEM 3, PARAGRAPH M4159-1, JTR, AND THE MEMBER'S AMENDED ORDERS WHICH PROVIDE THAT LAND TRAVEL WOULD BE LIMITED TO THE DISTANCE FROM TRAVIS AIR FORCE BASE (THE APPROPRIATE PORT OF DEBARKATION) TO HIS NEW DUTY STATION (FORT EUSTIS, VIRGINIA), THE MEMBER IS ENTITLED TO MILEAGE ALLOWANCE FOR THE DISTANCE BETWEEN THESE POINTS, FOR OVERLAND TRAVEL.

YOUR QUESTION IS ANSWERED ACCORDINGLY, AND SPECIALIST MURPHY'S VOUCHER IS RETURNED HEREWITH FOR APPROPRIATE DISPOSITION.