B-207834, DEC 9, 1982

B-207834: Dec 9, 1982

Additional Materials:

Contact:

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

 

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

THE MEMBER IS NOT ENTITLED TO REIMBURSEMENT FOR THE TRAVEL EXPENSES THEY INCURRED IN TRAVELING FROM FLORIDA TO TURKEY BECAUSE THEY TRAVELED FOR THE PURPOSE OF A VISIT AND NOT TO ESTABLISH THEIR RESIDENCE IN TURKEY. USAF: THIS ACTION IS TAKEN UPON THE APPEAL BY MAJOR GENERAL EARL G. WHERE THEY WERE IN COLLEGE. THE DENIAL OF THE CLAIM IS SUSTAINED SINCE THE SUBJECT TRAVEL WAS PERFORMED FOR VISITATION PURPOSES AND NOT TO RELOCATE AT THE OFFICER'S NEW STATION. WHERE THEY WERE TO BEGIN THE FALL SEMESTER AT COLLEGE. THE DESTINATION DESIGNATED IS. WHEN THE GENERAL WAS PAID HIS DEPENDENTS' TRAVEL ALLOWANCE ON THE FIRST VOUCHER. HIS SONS' TRAVEL TO FLORIDA WAS CONSIDERED BY THE AIR FORCE FINANCE OFFICER TO BE THE ONLY TRAVEL TO WHICH THEY WERE ENTITLED IN CONNECTION WITH HIS PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION.

B-207834, DEC 9, 1982

DIGEST: A MEMBER ORDERED TO MAKE A PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION FROM NEBRASKA TO TURKEY, TRANSPORTED HIS TWO DEPENDENT SONS AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE FROM NEBRASKA TO FLORIDA TO BEGIN THE FALL SEMESTER AT COLLEGE. IN DECEMBER, AT THE END OF THE FALL SEMESTER, THEY TRAVELED FROM FLORIDA TO TURKEY, THE FAMILY'S NEW RESIDENCE, AND RETURNED TO FLORIDA IN JANUARY TO BEGIN THE SPRING SEMESTER. THE MEMBER IS NOT ENTITLED TO REIMBURSEMENT FOR THE TRAVEL EXPENSES THEY INCURRED IN TRAVELING FROM FLORIDA TO TURKEY BECAUSE THEY TRAVELED FOR THE PURPOSE OF A VISIT AND NOT TO ESTABLISH THEIR RESIDENCE IN TURKEY.

MAJOR GENERAL EARL G. PECK, USAF:

THIS ACTION IS TAKEN UPON THE APPEAL BY MAJOR GENERAL EARL G. PECK, USAF, OF OUR CLAIMS GROUP'S ACTION WHICH DENIED HIS CLAIM FOR THE TRAVEL EXPENSES INCURRED BY HIS DEPENDENT CHILDREN WHEN THEY TRAVELED FROM TALLAHASSEE, FLORIDA, WHERE THEY WERE IN COLLEGE, TO HIS NEW PERMANENT DUTY STATION AT IZMIR, TURKEY. THE DENIAL OF THE CLAIM IS SUSTAINED SINCE THE SUBJECT TRAVEL WAS PERFORMED FOR VISITATION PURPOSES AND NOT TO RELOCATE AT THE OFFICER'S NEW STATION.

GENERAL PECK RECEIVED ORDERS, DATED JULY 23, 1980, FOR PERMANENT CHANGE- OF-STATION TRAVEL FROM OFFUTT AIR FORCE BASE, NEBRASKA, TO IZMIR, TURKEY, TO BE ACCOMPANIED BY HIS DEPENDENTS. HE RECEIVED DEPENDENT TRAVEL ALLOWANCES FOR THE TRAVEL OF HIS WIFE AND DAUGHTER FROM OFFUTT TO IZMIR, AND FOR THE TRAVEL OF HIS TWO SONS FROM OFFUTT TO FLORIDA, WHERE THEY WERE TO BEGIN THE FALL SEMESTER AT COLLEGE.

AT THE END OF THE FALL SEMESTER IN DECEMBER, GENERAL PECK'S SONS OBTAINED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REQUESTS AND TRAVELED FROM TALLAHASSEE, FLORIDA, TO IZMIR. IN JANUARY THEY RETURNED TO SCHOOL IN FLORIDA FOR THE SPRING SEMESTER. GENERAL PECK NOW CLAIMS THE EXPENSES OF THEIR TRANSPORTATION FROM FLORIDA TO IZMIR UNDER HIS PERMANENT CHANGE-OF STATION TRAVEL AUTHORIZATION, LESS THE AMOUNT HE RECEIVED FOR THEIR TRAVEL FROM NEBRASKA TO FLORIDA.

ON THE TRAVEL VOUCHER BY WHICH GENERAL PECK CLAIMED HIS SONS' TRAVEL EXPENSES FROM NEBRASKA TO FLORIDA, THE DESTINATION DESIGNATED IS, BY THE LANGUAGE OF THE FORM, THE DEPENDENTS' BONA FIDE RESIDENCE. WHEN THE GENERAL WAS PAID HIS DEPENDENTS' TRAVEL ALLOWANCE ON THE FIRST VOUCHER, HIS SONS' TRAVEL TO FLORIDA WAS CONSIDERED BY THE AIR FORCE FINANCE OFFICER TO BE THE ONLY TRAVEL TO WHICH THEY WERE ENTITLED IN CONNECTION WITH HIS PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION. SEE VOLUME 1, JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS (1 JTR), PARAGRAPH M7008-3. THUS, WHEN HE CLAIMED REIMBURSEMENT FOR THEIR TRAVEL FROM FLORIDA TO IZMIR, PAYMENT WAS DENIED ON THE BASIS OF COMPTROLLER GENERAL DECISION B-155344, JANUARY 15, 1965, AND THE PROVISIONS OF 1 JTR, PARAGRAPH M7000-13, WHICH STATES THAT REIMBURSEMENT FOR RELOCATION TRAVEL IS NOT AUTHORIZED FOR PLEASURE TRIPS OR VISITS OF DEPENDENTS OR IN THE ABSENCE OF THEIR INTENT TO ESTABLISH A RESIDENCE AT THE DESIGNATED LOCATION.

GENERAL PECK FURTHER STATES THAT THE DESTINATION OF FLORIDA AS HIS SONS' RESIDENCE WAS THE RESULT OF AN ADMINISTRATIVE ERROR. HE EXPLAINS THAT ON THE BASIS OF INSTRUCTIONS RECEIVED FROM FINANCE PERSONNEL, FLORIDA WAS ENTERED AS HIS SONS' DESTINATION ON THE INITIAL TRAVEL VOUCHER BECAUSE THAT VOUCHER WAS ONLY TO REFLECT THE TRAVEL COMPLETED BY HIS DEPENDENTS AT THE TIME IT WAS FILED. HE MAINTAINS THAT IN CONNECTION WITH HIS PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION TO IZMIR, IT WAS HIS INTENT TO TRANSPORT, AND ESTABLISH THE RESIDENCE OF ALL OF HIS DEPENDENTS THERE, AND THAT THE DELAY IN HIS SONS' INITIAL TRAVEL THERE WAS THE RESULT OF THE TIMING OF HIS PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION AND THEIR SCHOLASTIC SCHEDULES, OVER NEITHER OF WHICH DID HE HAVE ANY CONTROL. BECAUSE OF THE ERROR IN THE DESIGNATION OF HIS SONS' RESIDENCE, HE HAS REQUESTED A CORRECTION TO THE INITIAL VOUCHER TO SHOW IZMIR AS THEIR RESIDENCE AND THAT THEY TRAVELED THERE FROM NEBRASKA BY WAY OF FLORIDA.

UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF 37 U.S.C. SEC. 406(A), A MEMBER OF A UNIFORMED SERVICE WHO IS ORDERED TO MAKE A CHANGE OF PERMANENT STATION IS ENTITLED TO THE TRANSPORTATION EXPENSES OF HIS DEPENDENTS. THIS STATUTE IS IMPLEMENTED BY 1 JTR, CHAPTER 7. HOWEVER, AS STATED BY THE AIR FORCE ACCOUNTING AND FINANCE OFFICE, DEPENDENT TRAVEL TO A DESIGNATED LOCATION WHERE THE DEPENDENTS DO NOT INTEND TO ESTABLISH A RESIDENCE IS NOT AUTHORIZED UNDER THESE PROVISIONS. NEITHER IS TRAVEL THAT IS PERFORMED FOR THE PURPOSE OF A VISIT PAYABLE UNDER THESE REGULATIONS. 1 JTR, PARAGRAPH M7000-13.

WE HAVE HELD THAT WHEN A MEMBER WHOSE DEPENDENT CHILDREN ARE ENROLLED IN SCHOOL AT SOME PLACE OTHER THAN THE LOCATION OF HIS NEW PERMANENT DUTY STATION, THEIR INITIAL TRAVEL TO HIS NEW DUTY STATION BETWEEN OR DURING SCHOOL SEMESTERS IS CONSIDERED AS BEING FOR THE PURPOSE OF A VISIT AND NOT TO ESTABLISH A RESIDENCE. MATTER OF ROCHE, B-198961, MARCH 18, 1981, AND B-155344, JANUARY 15, 1965. THEREFORE, PAYMENT FOR SUCH TRAVEL IS PRECLUDED BY THE PROVISIONS OF 1 JTR, PARAGRAPH M7000.

SINCE GENERAL PECK'S SONS TRAVELED TO HIS NEW DUTY STATION AT THE END OF THE SCHOOL SEMESTER AND RETURNED TO SCHOOL TO BEGIN THE NEXT SEMESTER, THEIR TRAVEL WAS FOR THE PURPOSE OF A BRIEF VISIT AND, THEREFORE, IS NOT PAYABLE AS DEPENDENT RELOCATION TRAVEL PERFORMED IN CONNECTION WITH THEIR FATHER'S PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION. MATTER OF ROCHE, CITED ABOVE.

CONCERNING GENERAL PECK'S REQUEST THAT HE BE ALLOWED TO CORRECT HIS SONS' RELOCATION TRAVEL DESTINATION TO SHOW IZMIR AS THEIR RESIDENCE, SUCH A CHANGE WOULD NOT RESULT IN HIS ENTITLEMENT TO THE EXPENSES HE CLAIMS FOR HIS SONS' TRAVEL SINCE THEY TRAVELED TO IZMIR TO VISIT AND NOT TO REMAIN THERE INDEFINITELY.

ACCORDINGLY, THE DENIAL OF THE CLAIM BY THE CLAIMS GROUP IS SUSTAINED.