B-22606, DECEMBER 26, 1941, 21 COMP. GEN. 613

B-22606: Dec 26, 1941

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EVEN THOUGH THE TRANSFER (SEPARATION AND REAPPOINTMENT) WAS "IN THE NATURE OF AN INVOLUNTARY TRANSFER. " AND THE SAME RULE IS APPLICABLE IN APPLYING THE ACT OF OCTOBER 10. AS FOLLOWS: REQUEST IS MADE FOR RULING FROM THE GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE AS TO WHETHER THE ATTACHED VOUCHER FOR REIMBURSEMENT OF EXPENSES INCIDENT TO THE TRANSPORTATION OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS OF DUANE B. THE FOLLOWING FACTS ARE DEEMED PERTINENT IN CONNECTION WITH THIS SUBMITTAL: (A) DUANE B. WILSON WAS APPOINTED SPECIAL ASSISTANT TO THE LIAISON OFFICER. WILSON WAS FROM JULY 1938 UNTIL SEPTEMBER 21. WILSON FROM THE FARM SECURITY ADMINISTRATION TO THE OFFICE OF COORDINATOR OF INFORMATION WERE BEGUN ABOUT SEPTEMBER 8. WAS NOT MADE AT MR.

B-22606, DECEMBER 26, 1941, 21 COMP. GEN. 613

OFFICERS AND EMPLOYEES - TRANSFERS BETWEEN DEPARTMENTS AND ESTABLISHMENTS - EXPENSES OF TRAVEL AND TRANSPORTATION OF HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS THE AUTHORITY IN THE ACT OF MAY 31, 1941, TO PAY THE TRAVELING EXPENSES OF EMPLOYEES UPON TRANSFER FROM ONE OFFICIAL STATION TO ANOTHER MAY NOT BE APPLIED TO AUTHORIZE REIMBURSEMENT OF THE TRAVELING EXPENSES OF AN EMPLOYEE ON TRANSFER FROM ONE DEPARTMENT OR AGENCY TO ANOTHER, EVEN THOUGH THE TRANSFER (SEPARATION AND REAPPOINTMENT) WAS "IN THE NATURE OF AN INVOLUNTARY TRANSFER," AND THE SAME RULE IS APPLICABLE IN APPLYING THE ACT OF OCTOBER 10, 1940, AND THE PRESIDENT'S REGULATIONS ISSUED PURSUANT THERETO, WITH RESPECT TO PAYMENT OF THE EXPENSES OF TRANSPORTING THE HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS OF AN EMPLOYEE UPON CHANGE OF OFFICIAL STATION.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL WARREN TO THE COORDINATOR OF INFORMATION, EXECUTIVE OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENT, DECEMBER 26, 1941:

THERE HAS BEEN CONSIDERED YOUR LETTER OF NOVEMBER 25, 1941, AS FOLLOWS:

REQUEST IS MADE FOR RULING FROM THE GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE AS TO WHETHER THE ATTACHED VOUCHER FOR REIMBURSEMENT OF EXPENSES INCIDENT TO THE TRANSPORTATION OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS OF DUANE B. WILSON MAY BE PROPERLY PAID BY THIS OFFICE. THE FOLLOWING FACTS ARE DEEMED PERTINENT IN CONNECTION WITH THIS SUBMITTAL:

(A) DUANE B. WILSON WAS APPOINTED SPECIAL ASSISTANT TO THE LIAISON OFFICER, CAPTAIN JAMES ROOSEVELT, OFFICE OF THE COORDINATOR OF INFORMATION, EFFECTIVE SEPTEMBER 22, 1941. PRIOR TO THIS APPOINTMENT, MR. WILSON WAS FROM JULY 1938 UNTIL SEPTEMBER 21, 1941, IN THE EMPLOY OF THE FARM SECURITY ADMINISTRATION IN THE POSITION OF REGIONAL INFORMATION SPECIALIST WITH HEADQUARTERS IN DENVER, COLORADO.

(B) NEGOTIATIONS FOR THE TRANSFER OF MR. WILSON FROM THE FARM SECURITY ADMINISTRATION TO THE OFFICE OF COORDINATOR OF INFORMATION WERE BEGUN ABOUT SEPTEMBER 8, 1941. IN VIEW OF THE VERY GREAT URGENCY OF THE SITUATION AND THE NEED OF THIS OFFICE FOR HIS SERVICES AT THE EARLIEST PRACTICABLE DATE, THE FARM SECURITY ADMINISTRATION ARRANGED FOR HIM TO TERMINATE HIS WORK AND TO REPORT TO WASHINGTON ON SEPTEMBER 22. THE TRANSFER, DESPITE THE FACT THAT IT INVOLVED AN INCREASE IN SALARY, WAS NOT MADE AT MR. WILSON'S REQUEST BUT WAS RATHER IN THE NATURE OF AN INVOLUNTARY TRANSFER, OR TO SPEAK BROADLY, A DRAFTING OF MR. WILSON'S SERVICES IN THE INTEREST OF UTILIZING HIS QUALIFICATIONS IN A TECHNICAL CAPACITY AFFECTING NATIONAL DEFENSE.

(C) UNDER THE TERMS OF THE ACT, APPROVED OCTOBER 10, 1940, PUBLIC, 839, SEVENTY-SIXTH GRESS,"EXPENSES WHICH NOW OR HEREAFTER MAY BE AUTHORIZED BY LAW TO BE PAID FROM GOVERNMENT FUNDS FOR THE PACKING, CRATING, DRAYAGE, AND TRANSPORTATION OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS AND PERSONAL EFFECTS OF CIVILIAN OFFICERS AND EMPLOYEES OF ANY OF THE EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENTS OR ESTABLISHMENTS OF THE UNITED STATES WHEN TRANSFERRED FROM ONE OFFICIAL STATION TO ANOTHER FOR PERMANENT DUTY SHALL HEREAFTER BE ALLOWED AND PAID, WHEN SPECIFICALLY AUTHORIZED AND APPROVED BY THE HEAD OF THE DEPARTMENT OR ESTABLISHMENT CONCERNED, UNDER SUCH RULES AND REGULATIONS AS MAY BE PRESCRIBED BY THE PRESIDENT * * * PROVIDED THAT NO PART OF SUCH EXPENSES SHALL BE PAID FROM GOVERNMENT FUNDS WHERE THE TRANSFER IS MADE AT THE REQUEST AND PRIMARILY FOR THE CONVENIENCE OR BENEFIT OF THE OFFICER OR EMPLOYEE * * *"

(D) THE FUNDS AVAILABLE TO THE COORDINATOR OF INFORMATION ARE MADE BY ALLOTMENT FROM THE EMERGENCY FUND FOR THE PRESIDENT, CONTAINED IN THE MILITARY APPROPRIATION ACT, 1941, AND IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE PRESIDENT'S LETTER OF ALLOCATION ARE AVAILABLE FOR EXPENDITURE BY THE COORDINATOR OF INFORMATION FOR GENERAL ADMINISTRATIVE EXPENSES, ETC. A COPY OF ALLOCATION LETTER NO. 104, DATED OCTOBER 31, 1941, IS ATTACHED. LIKEWISE, THE EMERGENCY FUND FOR THE PRESIDENT CONTAINED IN THE ABOVE REFERRED TO APPROPRIATION ACT IS MADE AVAILABLE FOR EXPENDITURE FOR ANY PURPOSE AUTHORIZED IN THE SAID APPROPRIATION ACT, WHICH INCLUDES, AMONG OTHER THINGS, AN AUTHORIZATION FOR THE PAYMENT OF EXPENSES FOR TRANSPORTATION OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS.

(E) THE ATTACHED VOUCHER HAS BEEN PREPARED IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE REGULATIONS ISSUED BY THE PRESIDENT UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF THE ACT OF OCTOBER 10, 1940, REFERRED TO ABOVE ( EXECUTIVE ORDER 8588).

(F) NO DECISION OF THE COMPTROLLER GENERAL HAS BEEN FOUND WHICH BEARS DIRECTLY UPON THE POINTS HEREIN RAISED.

IN CONNECTION WITH THE FOREGOING SUBMISSION, IT MUST BE POINTED OUT THAT THE TIME ELEMENT INVOLVED IN MR. WILSON'S TRANSFER WAS SUCH AS TO CAUSE HIM CONSIDERABLE INCONVENIENCE, AND THAT HIS SERVICES WERE SOUGHT BY THIS OFFICE ON THE BASIS OF HIS QUALIFICATIONS.

WHILE YOUR LETTER REFERS ONLY TO ONE VOUCHER PROPOSING REIMBURSEMENT OF EXPENSES INCURRED INCIDENT TO THE TRANSPORTATION OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS, THAT AND ANOTHER RELATED VOUCHER WERE TRANSMITTED FOR PREAUDIT CONSIDERATION ON SCHEDULE NO. 265 DATED NOVEMBER 26, 1941. THE ONE, NO. 1030, PROPOSES PAYMENT TO MR. WILSON OF $77.75, INCLUDING $56.50 FOR MILEAGE FOR USE OF HIS PRIVATELY OWNED AUTOMOBILE FOR 1,695 MILES AT THE RATE OF $0.03 1/3 PER MILE, FROM DENVER, COLO., TO WASHINGTON, D.C., AND $21.25 PER DIEM IN LIEU OF SUBSISTENCE FOR 4 1/4 DAYS' TRAVEL TIME AT THE RATE OF $5 PER DAY. THE OTHER VOUCHER, NO. 1031, PROPOSES PAYMENT TO MR. WILSON OF $511.91 AS REIMBURSEMENT OF EXPENSES INCURRED INCIDENT TO THE TRANSPORTATION OF HIS HOUSEHOLD GOODS FROM DENVER, COLO., TO SILVER SPRING, MD., A SUBURB OF WASHINGTON, D.C.

THE FACTS PRESENTED IN THIS CASE CLEARLY SHOW THAT ON SEPTEMBER 21, 1941, DUANE B. WILSON WAS SEPARATED FROM THE SERVICE OF THE FARM SECURITY ADMINISTRATION, WITH HEADQUARTERS AT DENVER, COLO., AND WAS REAPPOINTED, EFFECTIVE SEPTEMBER 22, 1941, AS AN EMPLOYEE IN THE OFFICE OF THE COORDINATOR OF INFORMATION, WITH HEADQUARTERS AT WASHINGTON, D.C., AT AN INITIAL SALARY RATE OF $5,600 PER ANNUM. IT IS STATED THE EMPLOYEE RECEIVED AN INCREASE IN COMPENSATION UPON HIS REAPPOINTMENT. THIS PERSONNEL ACTION WAS NOT A TRANSFER FROM ONE OFFICIAL STATION TO ANOTHER WITHIN THE SAME DEPARTMENT OR ESTABLISHMENT OF THE GOVERNMENT, WITHIN THE MEANING OF THE LAWS CONTROLLING THE REIMBURSEMENT OF TRAVELING EXPENSES AND FOR TRANSPORTATION OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS UPON PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION.

SECTION 301 OF THE TREASURY DEPARTMENT APPROPRIATION ACT, 1942, APPROVED MAY 31, 1941, 55 STAT. 234, PUBLIC LAW 88, PROVIDES AS FOLLOWS:

APPROPRIATIONS FOR THE FISCAL YEAR 1942 AVAILABLE FOR EXPENSES OF TRAVEL OF CIVILIAN OFFICERS AND EMPLOYEES OF THE EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENTS AND ESTABLISHMENTS SHALL BE AVAILABLE, ALSO, FOR EXPENSES OF TRAVEL PERFORMED BY THEM ON TRANSFER FROM ONE OFFICIAL STATION TO ANOTHER WHEN AUTHORIZED BY THE HEAD OF THE DEPARTMENT OR ESTABLISHMENT CONCERNED IN THE ORDER DIRECTING SUCH TRANSFER: PROVIDED, THAT SUCH EXPENSES SHALL NOT BE ALLOWED FOR ANY TRANSFER EFFECTED FOR THE CONVENIENCE OF ANY OFFICER OR EMPLOYEE.

THIS STATUTORY PROVISION IS IN IDENTICAL TERMS WITH PROVISIONS APPEARING IN APPROPRIATION ACTS FOR PRIOR FISCAL YEARS. THE STATUTE REQUIRES AS A CONDITION PRECEDENT TO THE PAYMENT OF THE TRAVEL EXPENSES ON TRANSFER THAT THE TRANSFER OF THE EMPLOYEE BE AUTHORIZED BY THE HEAD (SINGULAR) OF THE DEPARTMENT OR ESTABLISHMENT CONCERNED (SINGULAR). IT IS CLEAR THAT THIS STATUTORY AUTHORITY IS LIMITED IN ITS APPLICATION TO TRANSFERS FROM ONE OFFICIAL STATION TO ANOTHER WITHIN THE SAME DEPARTMENT OR ESTABLISHMENT OF THE GOVERNMENT, AND MAY NOT BE APPLIED TO AUTHORIZE REIMBURSEMENT OF THE TRAVELING EXPENSES OF AN EMPLOYEE ON TRANSFER FROM ONE DEPARTMENT OR AGENCY OF THE GOVERNMENT TO ANOTHER, REGARDLESS OF THE FACT THAT THE TRANSFER (SEPARATION AND REAPPOINTMENT) "WAS NOT MADE AT MR. WILSON'S REQUEST, BUT WAS RATHER IN THE NATURE OF AN INVOLUNTARY TRANSFER" (QUOTING FROM YOUR LETTER). SEE 13 COMP. GEN. 390; 17 ID. 874. IN OTHER WORDS, THE CONGRESS HAS NOT AUTHORIZED REIMBURSEMENT OF THE TRAVELING EXPENSES OF AN EMPLOYEE INCURRED INCIDENT (1) TO A TRANSFER BETWEEN DIFFERENT DEPARTMENTS OR AGENCIES OF THE GOVERNMENT, OR (2) TO A SEPARATION FROM ONE DEPARTMENT AND A CONCOMITANT REAPPOINTMENT IN ANOTHER DEPARTMENT OR AGENCY.

THE ACT OF OCTOBER 10, 1940, 54 STAT. 1105, PROVIDES, IN PART, AS FOLLOWS:

THAT EXPENSES WHICH NOW OR HEREAFTER MAY BE AUTHORIZED BY LAW TO BE PAID FROM GOVERNMENT FUNDS FOR THE PACKING, CRATING, DRAYAGE, AND TRANSPORTATION OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS AND PERSONAL EFFECTS OF CIVILIAN OFFICERS AND EMPLOYEES OF ANY OF THE EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENTS OR ESTABLISHMENTS OF THE UNITED STATES WHEN TRANSFERRED FROM ONE OFFICIAL STATION TO ANOTHER FOR PERMANENT DUTY SHALL HEREAFTER BE ALLOWED AND PAID, WHEN SPECIFICALLY AUTHORIZED OR APPROVED BY THE HEAD OF THE DEPARTMENT OR ESTABLISHMENT CONCERNED, UNDER SUCH RULES AND REGULATIONS AS MAY BE PRESCRIBED BY THE PRESIDENT, * * *.

SECTION 1 OF THE PRESIDENT'S REGULATIONS, ISSUED UNDER AUTHORITY OF THIS ACT ( EXECUTIVE ORDER NO. 8588, DATED NOVEMBER 7, 1940) PROVIDES AS FOLLOWS:

WHEN ANY CIVILIAN OFFICER OR EMPLOYEE OF ANY OF THE EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENTS OR ESTABLISHMENTS OF THE UNITED STATES, HEREINAFTER CALLED EMPLOYEE, IS TRANSFERRED FROM ONE OFFICIAL STATION TO ANOTHER FOR PERMANENT DUTY AND THE PAYMENT OF EXPENSES OF TRANSPORTATION OF HIS HOUSEHOLD GOODS AND OTHER PERSONAL EFFECTS IS AUTHORIZED BY LAW, SUCH EXPENSES, WHEN SPECIFICALLY AUTHORIZED OR APPROVED BY THE HEAD OF THE DEPARTMENT OR ESTABLISHMENT CONCERNED, SHALL BE ALLOWED AND PAID IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE PROVISIONS OF THESE REGULATIONS.

THE CONCLUSION HEREINBEFORE STATED THAT THE ACTS OF CONGRESS AUTHORIZING REIMBURSEMENT OF TRAVELING EXPENSES UPON PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION IS LIMITED TO TRAVEL BETWEEN OFFICIAL STATIONS WITHIN THE SAME DEPARTMENT OR AGENCY OF THE GOVERNMENT IS REQUIRED, ALSO, IN THE APPLICATION OF THE PROVISIONS OF THE ACT OF OCTOBER 10, 1940, AND THE PRESIDENT'S REGULATIONS, SUPRA, BECAUSE SAID ACT IS MERELY AN AUTHORIZATION FOR THE ISSUANCE BY THE PRESIDENT OF UNIFORM REGULATIONS FOR THE TRANSPORTATION OF HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS WHEN THE EXPENSE OF SUCH TRANSPORTATION IS "AUTHORIZED BY LAW TO BE PAID FROM GOVERNMENT FUNDS.' 20 COMP. GEN. 421.

THE ITEMS HERE INVOLVED ARE PROPOSED TO BE PAID OUT OF AN ALLOTMENT MADE BY THE PRESIDENT TO THE COORDINATOR OF INFORMATION FROM THE " EMERGENCY FUND FOR THE PRESIDENT" UNDER AUTHORITY OF THE ACT OF JUNE 13, 1940 (54 STAT. 377), PROVIDING AS FOLLOWS:

TO ENABLE THE PRESIDENT, THROUGH THE APPROPRIATE AGENCIES OF THE GOVERNMENT, WITHOUT REFERENCE TO SECTION 3709, REVISED STATUTES, TO PROVIDE FOR EMERGENCIES AFFECTING THE NATIONAL SECURITY AND DEFENSE AND FOR EACH AND EVERY PURPOSE CONNECTED THEREWITH, INCLUDING ALL OF THE OBJECTS AND PURPOSES SPECIFIED UNDER ANY APPROPRIATION AVAILABLE OR TO BE MADE AVAILABLE TO THE WAR DEPARTMENT FOR THE FISCAL YEARS 1940 AND 1941; THE FURNISHING OF GOVERNMENT-OWNED FACILITIES AT PRIVATELY OWNED PLANTS; THE PROCUREMENT AND TRAINING OF CIVILIAN PERSONNEL NECESSARY IN CONNECTION WITH THE PRODUCTION OF CRITICAL AND ESSENTIAL ITEMS OF EQUIPMENT AND MATERIAL AND THE USE OR OPERATION THEREOF; AND THE PROCUREMENT OF STRATEGIC AND CRITICAL MATERIALS IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE ACT OF JUNE 7, 1939, $66,000,000; TO BE IMMEDIATELY AND CONTINUOUSLY AVAILABLE UNTIL JUNE 30, 1942; AND, IN ADDITION, THE PRESIDENT IS AUTHORIZED, THROUGH SUCH AGENCIES, ON AND AFTER THE ENACTMENT HEREOF, TO ENTER INTO CONTRACTS FOR THE SAME PURPOSES TO AN AMOUNT NOT EXCEEDING $66,000,000: PROVIDED, THAT AN ACCOUNT SHALL BE KEPT OF ALL EXPENDITURES MADE OR AUTHORIZED HEREUNDER, AND A REPORT THEREON SHALL BE SUBMITTED TO THE CONGRESS ON OR BEFORE JUNE 30, 1942.

IN DECISION OF NOVEMBER 19, 1940, 20 COMP. GEN. 267, 270, IT WAS STATED WITH REGARD TO THE " EMERGENCY FUND FOR THE PRESIDENT" PROVIDED IN THE ACT OF JUNE 13, 1940, SUPRA, AS FOLLOWS:

THIS APPROPRIATION ACT DOES NOT PROVIDE FOR EXPENDITURE BY THE PRESIDENT IN HIS DISCRETION. OTHER THAN DISREGARD OF SECTION 3709, REVISED STATUTES, THERE IS NOTHING IN THE TERMS OF THE APPROPRIATION ACT AUTHORIZING DISREGARD OF FEDERAL STATUTES AND RULES THEREUNDER CONTROLLING THE EXPENDITURE OF APPROPRIATED FUNDS.

THESE PAYMENTS ARE PROPOSED TO BE MADE FROM AN ALLOTMENT MADE TO THE COORDINATOR OF INFORMATION UNDER AUTHORITY OF LETTER DATED OCTOBER 31, 1941, FROM THE PRESIDENT TO THE SECRETARY OF THE TREASURY, READING AS FOLLOWS:

IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE PROVISIONS OF THE ITEM " EMERGENCY FUND FOR THE PRESIDENT," CONTAINED IN THE MILITARY APPROPRIATION ACT, 1941, APPROVED JUNE 13, 1940, I HEREBY MAKE THE FOLLOWING ALLOCATION:

TO THE COORDINATOR OF INFORMATION, FROM ACT OF JUNE 13, 1940, $600,000.

TO SUPPLEMENT ALLOCATION NO. 95 OF $350,000 MADE ON JULY 25, 1941, TO THE COORDINATOR OF INFORMATION AND TO BE EXPENDED BY THE COORDINATOR OF INFORMATION FOR GENERAL ADMINISTRATIVE EXPENSES AT THE SEAT OF THE GOVERNMENT AND ELSEWHERE DETERMINED TO BE NECESSARY BY THE COORDINATOR INCIDENT TO COLLECTING AND ANALYZING INFORMATION AND DATA BEARING UPON THE NATIONAL SECURITY, AS PRESCRIBED IN THE ORDER DESIGNATING A COORDINATOR OF INFORMATION, APPROVED BY THE PRESIDENT JULY 11, 1941, INCLUDING COMPENSATION OF OFFICERS AND EMPLOYEES; SPECIAL CONSULTANTS, TECHNICAL ASSISTANTS; TRAVELING EXPENSES OF MEMBERS OF THE OFFICE, OF OFFICERS AND EMPLOYEES AND PERSONS CALLED TO WASHINGTON FOR CONSULTATION IN CONNECTION WITH THE WORK; PRINTING AND BINDING; RENT; HEAT; LIGHT; TELEPHONE AND TELEGRAPH SERVICE; TRANSPORTATION OF THINGS, OFFICE SUPPLIES AND EQUIPMENT; AND ALL OTHER NECESSARY EXPENSES.

PLEASE ARRANGE FOR THE NECESSARY TRANSFER OF FUNDS AND ADVISE THE AGENCY CONCERNED.

AS THERE IS NO AUTHORITY OF LAW FOR PAYMENT OF THE ITEMS IN QUESTION, AND AS THERE WAS NO AUTHORITY VESTED IN THE PRESIDENT UNDER THE ACT OF JUNE 13, 1940, TO ALLOCATE FUNDS TO THE COORDINATOR OF INFORMATION FOR EXPENDITURE WITHOUT REGARD TO THE FEDERAL STATUTES AND REGULATIONS CONTROLLING THE PAYMENT OF TRAVELING EXPENSES AND REIMBURSEMENT FOR TRANSPORTATION OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS, AND AS THE ALLOCATION OF FUNDS UNDER WHICH THESE PAYMENTS ARE PROPOSED TO BE MADE DOES NOT PURPORT TO AUTHORIZE EXPENDITURES OTHERWISE THAN IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONTROLLING STATUTES AND REGULATIONS, THERE IS NO ALTERNATIVE BUT TO CONCLUDE THAT PAYMENT ON THE VOUCHERS IN QUESTION IS NOT AUTHORIZED. THE VOUCHERS WILL BE RETURNED, WITHOUT CERTIFICATION FOR PAYMENT, THROUGH THE USUAL PREAUDIT CHANNELS.