B-181202, NOV 25, 1974, 54 COMP GEN 430

B-181202: Nov 25, 1974

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WHERE HE WAS TRANSACTING NON GOVERNMENT BUSINESS AT TIME HE WAS CALLED FOR GOVERNMENT MEETINGS IN WASHINGTON. HE MAY BE ALLOWED THE FULL COST OF ROUND-TRIP AIRFARE BETWEEN LAS VEGAS AND WASHINGTON BECAUSE THE DELAY WAS OCCASIONED BY THE GOVERNMENT ASSIGNMENT. WAS REQUESTED BY THE AEC TO TRAVEL FROM LAS VEGAS. BROWN WAS ON NON-AEC BUSINESS. LOUIS) WAS ONLY $206.27. BROWN BELIEVES THAT THIS UNUSED AMOUNT IS DUE HIM AS HE LATER HAD TO RETURN TO LAS VEGAS TO COMPLETE THE BUSINESS THAT WAS INTERRUPTED WHEN HE WAS CALLED TO WASHINGTON. OUR DECISION WAS REQUESTED SINCE REV. THIS WOULD BE SO SINCE HIS ENTITLEMENT TO REIMBURSEMENT FOR TRAVEL EXPENSES BETWEEN HIS HOME OR REGULAR PLACE OF BUSINESS WOULD TERMINATE WHEN HE RETURNED TO HIS HOME OR REGULAR PLACE OF BUSINESS FROM THE PLACE WHERE OFFICIAL GOVERNMENT DUTY WAS REQUIRED OF HIM. 24 COMP.

B-181202, NOV 25, 1974, 54 COMP GEN 430

EXPERTS AND CONSULTANTS - TRAVEL EXPENSES - TO AND FROM PLACES OTHER THAN HOME, ET. ALTHOUGH GOVERNMENT CONSULTANT EMPLOYED ON WHEN-ACTUALLY-EMPLOYED BASIS RETURNED TO HIS HOME IN ST. LOUIS, MISSOURI, INSTEAD OF RETURNING IMMEDIATELY TO LAS VEGAS, NEVADA, WHERE HE WAS TRANSACTING NON GOVERNMENT BUSINESS AT TIME HE WAS CALLED FOR GOVERNMENT MEETINGS IN WASHINGTON, D.C., HE MAY BE ALLOWED THE FULL COST OF ROUND-TRIP AIRFARE BETWEEN LAS VEGAS AND WASHINGTON BECAUSE THE DELAY WAS OCCASIONED BY THE GOVERNMENT ASSIGNMENT.

IN THE MATTER OF A RECLAIM TRAVEL VOUCHER, NOVEMBER 25, 1974:

REV. LEO C. BROWN, SERVING UNDER A WHEN-ACTUALLY-EMPLOYED CONSULTANT AGREEMENT WITH THE ATOMIC ENERGY COMMISSION (AEC), WAS REQUESTED BY THE AEC TO TRAVEL FROM LAS VEGAS, WHERE REV. BROWN WAS ON NON-AEC BUSINESS, TO WASHINGTON, D.C., TO ATTEND AEC MEETINGS. HE DEPARTED LAS VEGAS ON JULY 30, 1973, PERFORMED OFFICIAL BUSINESS IN WASHINGTON DURING THE PERIOD OF JULY 30 - AUGUST 2, AND THEN RETURNED TO HIS ST. LOUIS RESIDENCE ON AUGUST 3. TO PAY FOR HIS TRANSPORTATION EXPENSES, REV. BROWN USED A GOVERNMENT TRANSPORTATION REQUEST ON JULY 30 TO PURCHASE A LAS VEGAS-WASHINGTON, D.C. ROUNDTRIP TICKET IN THE AMOUNT OF $289.27. HOWEVER, THE COST OF THE AIRFARE FOR THE TRAVEL ACTUALLY INCURRED (LAS VEGAS-WASHINGTON, D.C. AND WASHINGTON, D.C. - ST. LOUIS) WAS ONLY $206.27, LEAVING AN UNUSED BALANCE OF $83. REV. BROWN BELIEVES THAT THIS UNUSED AMOUNT IS DUE HIM AS HE LATER HAD TO RETURN TO LAS VEGAS TO COMPLETE THE BUSINESS THAT WAS INTERRUPTED WHEN HE WAS CALLED TO WASHINGTON, D.C. OUR DECISION WAS REQUESTED SINCE REV. BROWN RETURNED TO HIS HOME IN ST. LOUIS AND DID NOT RETURN TO LAS VEGAS UNTIL A MONTH THEREAFTER.

SECTION 5703(B) OF TITLE 5, U.S.C. (1970), PROVIDES THAT AN INDIVIDUAL EMPLOYED INTERMITTENTLY IN THE GOVERNMENT SERVICE AS AN EXPERT OR CONSULTANT AND PAID ON A DAILY WHEN-ACTUALLY-EMPLOYED BASIS MAY BE ALLOWED TRAVEL EXPENSES WHEN AWAY FROM HIS HOME OR REGULAR PLACE OF BUSINESS. ORDINARILY THE UNUSED BALANCE OF $83 COULD NOT BE APPLIED TO THE TRANSPORTATION COSTS INCURRED AS A RESULT OF REV. BROWN'S RETURN TO LAS VEGAS FROM ST. LOUIS. THIS WOULD BE SO SINCE HIS ENTITLEMENT TO REIMBURSEMENT FOR TRAVEL EXPENSES BETWEEN HIS HOME OR REGULAR PLACE OF BUSINESS WOULD TERMINATE WHEN HE RETURNED TO HIS HOME OR REGULAR PLACE OF BUSINESS FROM THE PLACE WHERE OFFICIAL GOVERNMENT DUTY WAS REQUIRED OF HIM. 24 COMP. GEN. 546 (1945); 34 ID. 628 (1955). HOWEVER, IT HAS BEEN HELD THAT WHEN A CONSULTANT, WHO WAS PERFORMING PERSONAL BUSINESS AWAY FROM HIS HOME OR REGULAR PLACE OF BUSINESS, HAS BEEN REQUESTED TO PERFORM GOVERNMENT BUSINESS AT A DIFFERENT LOCATION, HE MAY BE PAID THE ROUND-TRIP TRAVEL EXPENSES BETWEEN THE TWO LOCATIONS. B-121178, OCTOBER 20, 1954. IN THE INSTANT CASE, REV. BROWN, WOULD, THEREFORE, HAVE BEEN REIMBURSED THE TRAVEL EXPENSES INCIDENT TO AN IMMEDIATE RETURN TRIP TO LAS VEGAS FOLLOWING THE COMPLETION OF HIS GOVERNMENT BUSINESS. WE DO NOT BELIEVE SUCH ENTITLEMENT SHOULD BE REDUCED BECAUSE HIS FAILURE TO RETURN TO LAS VEGAS TO COMPLETE HIS BUSINESS THERE IMMEDIATELY WAS A RESULT OF HIS GOVERNMENT ASSIGNMENT.

ACCORDINGLY, REV. BROWN'S RECLAIM TRAVEL VOUCHER MAY BE CERTIFIED FOR PAYMENT IF OTHERWISE PROPER.