B-235100, Dec 7, 1989

B-235100: Dec 7, 1989

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CIVILIAN PERSONNEL - Relocation - Household goods - Commuted rates - Reimbursement - Amount determination DIGEST: An employee who is authorized to be reimbursed under the Commuted Rate System for arranging with a common carrier to move his household goods during the applicable period of time is entitled to reimbursement of an additional 10 percent seasonal adjustment without providing evidence that he was actually charged the adjusted rate by the carrier since the General Services Administration regulation in effect does not limit the adjustment to cases where the higher rate has been charged by the carrier. Wray: The issue in this case is whether Mr. He was paid the applicable commuted rate for contracting with a common carrier to transport his household goods.

B-235100, Dec 7, 1989

CIVILIAN PERSONNEL - Relocation - Household goods - Commuted rates - Reimbursement - Amount determination DIGEST: An employee who is authorized to be reimbursed under the Commuted Rate System for arranging with a common carrier to move his household goods during the applicable period of time is entitled to reimbursement of an additional 10 percent seasonal adjustment without providing evidence that he was actually charged the adjusted rate by the carrier since the General Services Administration regulation in effect does not limit the adjustment to cases where the higher rate has been charged by the carrier.

Clyde H. Wray:

The issue in this case is whether Mr. Clyde H. Wray may be reimbursed an additional $778.93 for the shipment of his household goods incident to a permanent change-of-station move. He was paid the applicable commuted rate for contracting with a common carrier to transport his household goods, but his agency denied his claim for an additional 10 percent seasonal rate adjustment that was provided for in the General Services Administration's (GSA) regulation for shipments that are transported between June 1 and September 30. Although his goods were transported during the applicable time period, the agency declined to make the seasonal rate adjustment since Mr. Wray did not provide evidence that the carrier had billed him at the higher seasonal rate.

GSA Bulletin FPMR A-2, Supp. 101, Attachment A (May 23, 1985) provides that for the period of June 1st through September 30th of each year, "... the applicable transportation line-haul rates from table 1,2,3,4, or 5 will be increased by 10 percent, which represents the seasonal rate adjustment." The General Services Administration has advised us that it was intended that an employee authorized to move under the commuted rate system be reimbursed for the seasonal rate adjustment only when it has been charged by the common carrier.

This is consistent with our precedent which has limited reimbursement of a similar surcharge to employees who were required to pay the surcharge. See 50 Comp.Gen. 827 (1971).

In this case, Mr. Wray has not demonstrated that the carrier factored the seasonal adjustment into its firm bid of $7,102.28, and the carrier's bill did not show the adjustment as an itemized charge. Moreover, a GSA representative informally advised us that in the absence of a firm bid, the carrier's published rate of $72.06 per 100 pounds times the shipment's weight, 11,080 pounds, would have produced a line-haul charge of $7,984.25, which, in light of the lower firm bid, suggests that the seasonal adjustment was not charged by the carrier.

Accordingly, in the absence of documentation from the carrier showing that the specific expense was incurred, the agency's denial of Mr. Wray's claim for additional reimbursement is sustained.