B-182181, FEB 4, 1975, 54 COMP GEN 658

B-182181: Feb 4, 1975

Additional Materials:

Contact:

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

 

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

TRANSPORTATION - HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS - HOUSE TRAILER SHIPMENTS - COMMERCIAL TRANSPORTATION - TRANSPORTED BY DEALER PAYMENT FOR TRANSPORTATION OF A NEWLY PURCHASED MOBILE HOME ON A COMMERCIAL RATE BASIS MAY BE MADE NOT TO EXCEED THE CONSTRUCTIVE COST OF TRANSPORTING THE EMPLOYEE'S HOUSEHOLD GOODS WHERE THE MOBILE HOME WAS TRANSPORTED BY THE DEALER. EVEN THOUGH THE DEALER WAS NOT LISTED BY THE INTERSTATE COMMERCE COMMISSION AS A COMMERCIAL TRANSPORTER SINCE THE DEALER WAS OPERATING UNDER COLOR OF STATE LICENSE OR OTHER STATE SANCTION PERMITTING THE TOWING AND TRANSPORTATION OF THE TRAILER. 1975: THIS MATTER WAS SUBMITTED FOR AN ADVANCE DECISION BY A FINANCE AND ACCOUNTING OFFICER OF THE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY.

B-182181, FEB 4, 1975, 54 COMP GEN 658

TRANSPORTATION - HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS - HOUSE TRAILER SHIPMENTS - COMMERCIAL TRANSPORTATION - TRANSPORTED BY DEALER PAYMENT FOR TRANSPORTATION OF A NEWLY PURCHASED MOBILE HOME ON A COMMERCIAL RATE BASIS MAY BE MADE NOT TO EXCEED THE CONSTRUCTIVE COST OF TRANSPORTING THE EMPLOYEE'S HOUSEHOLD GOODS WHERE THE MOBILE HOME WAS TRANSPORTED BY THE DEALER, EVEN THOUGH THE DEALER WAS NOT LISTED BY THE INTERSTATE COMMERCE COMMISSION AS A COMMERCIAL TRANSPORTER SINCE THE DEALER WAS OPERATING UNDER COLOR OF STATE LICENSE OR OTHER STATE SANCTION PERMITTING THE TOWING AND TRANSPORTATION OF THE TRAILER.

IN THE MATTER OF THE TRANSPORTATION OF MOBILE HOME, FEBRUARY 4, 1975:

THIS MATTER WAS SUBMITTED FOR AN ADVANCE DECISION BY A FINANCE AND ACCOUNTING OFFICER OF THE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY, AND WAS FORWARDED TO OUR OFFICE BY THE PER DIEM, TRAVEL AND TRANSPORTATION ALLOWANCE COMMITTEE, UNDER CONTROL NO. 74-35 ON SEPTEMBER 4, 1974.

THE SUBJECT MATTER OF THE REQUEST IS THE PROPRIETY OF PAYING THE RECLAIM VOUCHER OF MS. VIOLET M. EVES, A CIVILIAN EMPLOYEE OF THE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY. THE CLAIM AROSE OUT OF THE TRANSFER OF MS. EVES' OFFICIAL DUTY STATION FROM HERMISTON, OREGON, TO TOOELE, UTAH, AND INVOLVES THE FOLLOWING CIRCUMSTANCES.

ON MARCH, 9, 1973, MS. EVES WAS GIVEN A NOTICE OF REDUCTION IN FORCE AT HER OLD OFFICIAL DUTY STATION. SUBSEQUENT TO SUCH NOTICE AND APPARENTLY PRIOR TO HER SEPARATION, SHE WAS ABLE TO SECURE A POSITION AT HER NEW OFFICIAL DUTY STATION. A TRANSFER WAS REQUESTED ON APRIL 2, 1973, AND HER REPORTING DATE AT THE NEW OFFICIAL DUTY STATION WAS SET FOR ON OR ABOUT APRIL 16, 1973.

THE RECORD SHOWS THAT MS. EVES HAD OWNED AN ALL-ELECTRIC MOBILE HOME SINCE JUNE 1972 AND THAT WHEN SHE WAS INFORMED THAT ALL-ELECTRIC TRAILER SPACE WAS HARD TO FIND IN TOOELE, SHE SOLD THE ALL-ELECTRIC UNIT AND PURCHASES A GAS UNIT ON APRIL 1, 1973, FROM THE B & E MOBILE HOMES, INC., HERMISTON, OREGON. THE TRAVEL ORDER OF APRIL 2, 1973, UMAD 45-73, AUTHORIZED THE TRANSPORTATION OF A MOBILE HOME FROM HERMISTON, OREGON, TO TOOELE, UTAH. THE RECORD SHOWS THAT B & E MOBILE HOMES, INC. DELIVERED MS. EVES' TRAILER AT TOOELE, UTAH, ON MAY 10, 1973, AND CHARGED HER A DELIVERY FEE OF $1,030.95 WHICH WAS CALCULATED FOR 711 MILES AT $1.45 PER MILE.

THE TRAVEL VOUCHER SUBMITTED TO THE FINANCE AND ACCOUNTING OFFICER SHOWS THAT A CLAIM WAS MADE FOR $1,030.95 FOR MOVING THE MOBILE HOME AND THAT ONLY $67.76 OF THAT AMOUNT WAS PAID ON THE BASIS OF VOLUME 2, JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS (JTR), PARAGRAPH C10202-3A. THE AMOUNT OF $67.76 WAS OBTAINED BY CALCULATING 616 MILES, WHICH MS. EVES TRAVELED WITH HER PRIVATELY OWNED VEHICLE AND FOR WHICH SHE WAS REIMBURSED AT 8 CENTS PER MILE, INSTEAD OF AT 11 CENTS PER MILE AS THE ABOVE-CITED REGULATION REQUIRES. MS. EVES RECLAIMED THE BALANCE OF $963.19.

THE GOVERNING REGULATION UNDER WHICH MS. EVES' ALLOWANCES ARE PAYABLE IS VOLUME 2, JTR. THE PERTINENT PROVISIONS APPLICABLE IN THIS CASE ARE PARAGRAPH C10202 AND PARAGRAPH C1100.

PARAGRAPH C10202 PROVIDES IN PART AS FOLLOWS:

C10202 REIMBURSEMENT FOR TRANSPORTATION OF MOBILE HOMES IN LIEU OF SHIPMENT OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS

2. MOVEMENT OF MOBILE HOME BY COMMERCIAL TRANSPORTER

A. ALLOWED REIMBURSEMENT. WHEN A MOBILE HOME IS TRANSPORTED BY A COMMERCIAL TRANSPORTER, REIMBURSEMENT IS ALLOWED FOR:

1. THE CARRIER'S CHARGES FOR ACTUAL TRANSPORTATION OF THE MOBILE HOME IS AN AMOUNT NOT EXCEEDING THE INTERSTATE COMMERCE COMMISSION, OR SIMILAR STATE REGULATORY BODY, TARIFFS APPLICABLE FOR A MOBILE HOME OF THE SIZE AND TYPE, AND FOR THE DISTANCE TRANSPORTED;

2. FERRY FARES; BRIDGE, ROAD, AND TUNNEL TOLLS; TAXES; CHARGES OR FEES FIXED BY A STATE OR MUNICIPAL AUTHORITY OR PERMITS TO TRANSPORT MOBILE HOMES IN OR THROUGH ITS JURISDICTION; AND CARRIER'S SERVICE CHARGES FOR OBTAINING SUCH PERMITS.

AT THE TIME THAT THE EMPLOYEE PAYS THE CARRIER'S BILL HE SHOULD INSURE THAT THE BILL ITEMIZES ALL CHARGES.

3. MOVEMENT OTHER THAN BY COMMERCIAL TRANSPORTER

A. ENTITLEMENT. WHEN A MOBILE HOME IS TRANSPORTED BY MEANS OTHER THAN A COMMERCIAL TRANSPORTER, SUCH AS WHEN IT IS TOWED BY A PRIVATELY OWNED VEHICLE, AN ALLOWANCE OF $0.11 PER MILE SHALL BE MADE TO COVER THE OFFICIAL DISTANCE AND FERRY FARES; BRIDGE, ROAD, AND TUNNEL TOLLS; PERMIT FEES; AND OTHER EXPENSES. NO ALLOWANCES OTHER THAN THE $0.11 PER MILE SHALL BE MADE FOR TRANSPORTATION OF THE MOBILE HOME BUT PAYMENT OF THE MILEAGE ALLOWANCE FOR USE OF A PRIVATELY OWNED VEHICLE MAY BE MADE IN ADDITION TO THE $0.11 ALLOWANCE. ***

5. LIMITATION ON REIMBURSEMENT. THE REIMBURSEMENT ALLOWABLE UNDER SUBPAR. 2, 3, OR 4 WILL NOT EXCEED THE CONSTRUCTIVE EXPENSE THAT WOULD HAVE BEEN ALLOWED BY THE GOVERNMENT FOR TRANSPORTATION AND 60 DAYS TEMPORARY STORAGE OF THE MAXIMUM WEIGHT OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS FOR WHICH THE EMPLOYEE HAS ELIGIBILITY.

PARAGRAPH C1100 PROVIDES THE FOLLOWING DEFINITIONS FOR THE TERMS "COMMERCIAL TRANSPORTER" AND "PRIVATELY OWNED MOTOR VEHICLE."

COMMERCIAL TRANSPORTER. THE TERM "COMMERCIAL TRANSPORTER" MEANS A TRANSPORTER WHO IS OPERATING PURSUANT TO THE INTERSTATE COMMERCE ACT IN INTERSTATE COMMERCE OR UNDER APPROPRIATE STATE STATUTES IN INTRASTATE COMMERCE.

PRIVATELY OWNED MOTOR VEHICLE. "PRIVATELY OWNED MOTOR VEHICLE" AND "PRIVATELY OWNED VEHICLE" MEAN A MOTOR VEHICLE NOT OWNED BY THE GOVERNMENT WHICH IS IN THE POSSESSION OF AND USED BY THE EMPLOYEE AND/OR HIS IMMEDIATE FAMILY FOR THE PRIMARY PURPOSE OF PROVIDING PERSONAL TRANSPORTATION. EXCLUDED ARE TRAILERS, AIRPLANES, OR ANY VEHICLE INTENDED FOR COMMERCIAL USE.

THE FINANCE AND ACCOUNTING OFFICER HAS SUPPLIED OUR OFFICE WITH INFORMATION THAT THE INTERSTATE COMMERCE FREIGHT TARIFF NUMBER 10-F, COVERING TRANSPORTATION OF MOBILE HOMES DOES NOT LIST THE B & E MOBILE HOMES, INC., AS A COMMERCIAL TRANSPORTER REGISTERED WITH THE COMMISSION. HIS RELUCTANCE TO ALLOW THE CLAIM WAS APPARENTLY BASED ON THIS FINDING. WE NOTE, HOWEVER, THAT THE MOBILE HOME WAS TRANSPORTED ACROSS STATE LINES AND FOR SOME 711 MILES BY A BUSINESS CORPORATION WHICH MUST HAVE HAD EITHER A SPECIAL PERMIT TO TRANSPORT THE TRAILER BY THE STATE OF ITS DOMICILE OR THE TOWING VEHICLE'S LICENSE MUST HAVE BEEN INVOKED AS A STATE SANCTION PERMITTING THE TOWING AND TRANSPORTATION OF THE TRAILER. MOREOVER, SINCE THE TOWING VEHICLE WAS NEITHER IN THE POSSESSION OF NOR WAS IT USED BY THE EMPLOYEE AND HER IMMEDIATE FAMILY, WE CANNOT FIND THAT THE TRANSPORTATION OF MS. EVES' TRAILER WAS DONE BY PRIVATE AS OPPOSED TO COMMERCIAL MEANS.

ACCORDINGLY, IN THE CIRCUMSTANCES OF THIS CASE, PAYMENT MAY BE MADE, IF OTHERWISE CORRECT, FOR $839, THE STATED COST FOR COMMERCIAL MOVEMENT OF A MOBILE TRAILER OF THE SIZE HERE INVOLVED, LESS THE $67.76 ALREADY PAID AND PROVIDING IT DOES NOT EXCEED THE LIMITATION IN SUBPARAGRAPH 5 OF THE REGULATION QUOTED ABOVE.