B-2893, APRIL 19, 1939, 18 COMP. GEN. 800

B-2893: Apr 19, 1939

Additional Materials:

Contact:

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

 

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

1939: I HAVE YOUR LETTER OF APRIL 3. IT IS APPARENT. THAT THE PURPOSE OF THIS PROVISION IS TO PREVENT EXCESSIVE EXPENDITURES FOR MAINTENANCE. IT IS NECESSARY THAT A STANDARD CLASSIFICATION BE ESTABLISHED OF ITEMS WHICH ARE. OF ITEMS WHICH ARE NOT. IN WHICH SUCH ITEMS ARE SO CLASSIFIED. A DRAFT OF THE PROPOSED CIRCULAR IS ENCLOSED. BEFORE IT IS ISSUED. YOUR ADVICE IS REQUESTED AS TO WHETHER THERE IS ANY OBJECTION. THE FOLLOWING CLASSIFICATION OF ITEMS WHICH ARE CHARGEABLE. OF THOSE WHICH ARE NOT CHARGEABLE. IS CIRCULATED FOR THE INFORMATION AND GUIDANCE OF ALL BUREAUS AND OFFICES OF THE DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE: TABLE ITEMS CHARGEABLE TO 1/3 REPLACEMENT ITEMS NOT CHARGEABLE TO 1/3 VALUE OR $400 LIMIT ON MAINTENANCE.

B-2893, APRIL 19, 1939, 18 COMP. GEN. 800

VEHICLES - MOTOR - PASSENGER-CARRYING - REPAIR LIMITATIONS - CLASSIFICATION OF ITEMS INVOLVING MAINTENANCE, UPKEEP, AND REPAIR THE COST OF ACCESSORIES REPAIRS AND REPLACEMENTS, BATTERY REPLACEMENT, PAINTING, RECONDITIONING OF INTEGRAL PARTS, REPAIR LABOR AND PARTS, SEAT- COVER REPLACEMENTS, BATTERY CHARGING, BATTERY RENTAL, ANTIFREEZE COMPOUND, AND WASHING, POLISHING AND WAXING, MUST BE INCLUDED IN MAINTENANCE, UPKEEP, AND REPAIR COST LIMITATION DETERMINATIONS UNDER THE APPLICABLE STATUTES LIMITING EXPENDITURES FOR MAINTENANCE, UPKEEP, AND REPAIR ON ANY ONE MOTOR-PROPELLED PASSENGER CARRYING VEHICLE, EXCEPT AS PROVIDED OTHERWISE, TO ONE-THIRD OF THE MARKET PRICE OF A NEW VEHICLE OF THE SAME MAKE AND CLASS AND IN NO CASE IN EXCESS OF $400, BUT GARAGE RENT; STORAGE; GREASING; GASOLINE, OIL, AND GREASE; PAY OF OPERATORS; TIRES; TIRE BOOTS, CHAINS, LININGS, MOUNTINGS, AND THEIR REPAIRS AND REPLACEMENTS; TUBES; TUBE REPAIRS AND REPLACEMENTS; AND TOWING (OTHER THAN FOR PURPOSE OF REPAIRING) NEED NOT BE INCLUDED.

ACTING COMPTROLLER GENERAL ELLIOTT TO THE SECRETARY OF AGRICULTURE, APRIL 19, 1939:

I HAVE YOUR LETTER OF APRIL 3, 1939, AS FOLLOWS:

CONTINUING A LEGISLATIVE POLICY THAT HAS BEEN IN EFFECT FOR SEVERAL YEARS, SECTION 3 OF THE TREASURY AND POST OFFICE DEPARTMENT APPROPRIATION ACT FOR THE FISCAL YEAR 1939, PUBLIC, NO. 453, 75TH CONGRESS, APPROVED MARCH 28, 1938, (52 STAT. 147), PROVIDES THAT:

"NO APPROPRIATION AVAILABLE FOR THE EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENTS AND INDEPENDENT ESTABLISHMENTS OF THE GOVERNMENT FOR THE FISCAL YEAR ENDING JUNE 30, 1939, WHETHER CONTAINED IN THIS ACT OR ANY OTHER ACT, SHALL BE EXPENDED---

"/C) FOR THE MAINTENANCE, UPKEEP, AND REPAIR (EXCLUSIVE OF GARAGE RENT, PAY OF OPERATORS, TIRES, FUEL, AND LUBRICANTS) ON ANY ONE MOTOR PROPELLED PASSENGER-CARRYING VEHICLE, EXCEPT BUSSES AND AMBULANCES, IN EXCESS OF ONE -THIRD OF THE MARKET PRICE OF A NEW VEHICLE OF THE SAME MAKE AND CLASS AND IN NO CASE IN EXCESS OF $400.'

IT IS APPARENT, OF COURSE, THAT THE PURPOSE OF THIS PROVISION IS TO PREVENT EXCESSIVE EXPENDITURES FOR MAINTENANCE, UPKEEP, AND REPAIR (AS DISTINGUISHED FROM ORDINARY RUNNING EXPENSES) OF MOTOR VEHICLES WHICH IT WOULD BE MORE ADVANTAGEOUS TO REPLACE OUTRIGHT. CONGRESS SAW FIT, HOWEVER, TO EXCLUDE FROM THIS REQUIREMENT THE COST OF EXPENDABLE AND HIGHLY VARIABLE OPERATING ITEMS, SUCH AS GARAGE RENT, PAY OF OPERATORS, TIRES, FUEL, AND LUBRICANTS. IN THE OPINION OF THIS DEPARTMENT, A REASONABLE INTERPRETATION OF THE LEGISLATIVE INTENT ALSO PERMITS THE EXCLUSION OF THE COST OF CERTAIN ASSOCIATED AND RELATED EXPENDABLE SUPPLIES AND SERVICES. IN ORDER TO ESTABLISH UNIFORMITY IN PRACTICE AND IN RECORDING IN THE VARIOUS BUREAUS AND OFFICES OF THIS DEPARTMENT, IT IS NECESSARY THAT A STANDARD CLASSIFICATION BE ESTABLISHED OF ITEMS WHICH ARE, AND OF ITEMS WHICH ARE NOT, CHARGEABLE UNDER THE REQUIREMENT RELATING TO MAINTENANCE, UPKEEP, AND REPAIR. THE OFFICE OF BUDGET AND FINANCE OF THIS DEPARTMENT, THEREFORE, PROPOSES TO ISSUE A CIRCULAR, FOR THE INFORMATION AND GUIDANCE OF ALL BRANCHES OF THIS DEPARTMENT, IN WHICH SUCH ITEMS ARE SO CLASSIFIED. A DRAFT OF THE PROPOSED CIRCULAR IS ENCLOSED, BUT BEFORE IT IS ISSUED, YOUR ADVICE IS REQUESTED AS TO WHETHER THERE IS ANY OBJECTION, IN THE OPINION OF YOUR OFFICE, TO THE PROPOSED CLASSIFICATION INDICATED THEREIN.

THE PROPOSED CIRCULAR PROVIDES:

MAINTENANCE, UPKEEP, AND REPAIR COSTS OF MOTOR-PROPELLED

PASSENGER-CARRYING VEHICLES

UNDER THE PROVISIONS, SECTION 3 OF THE TREASURY-POST OFFICE APPROPRIATION ACT, APPROVED MARCH 28, 1938 (PUBLIC, NO. 453, 75TH CONGRESS), NO APPROPRIATION SHALL BE EXPENDED "FOR THE MAINTENANCE, UPKEEP, AND REPAIR (EXCLUSIVE OF GARAGE RENT, PAY OF OPERATORS, TIRES, FUEL AND LUBRICANTS) ON ANY ONE MOTOR-PROPELLED PASSENGER-CARRYING VEHICLE, EXCEPT BUSSES AND AMBULANCES, IN EXCESS OF ONE-THIRD OF THE MARKET PRICE OF A NEW VEHICLE OF THE SAME MAKE AND CLASS AND IN NO CASE IN EXCESS OF $400.'

IN ORDER THAT STANDARD PRACTICE MAY BE ESTABLISHED AND UNIFORM RECORDS MAINTAINED, THE FOLLOWING CLASSIFICATION OF ITEMS WHICH ARE CHARGEABLE, AND OF THOSE WHICH ARE NOT CHARGEABLE, UNDER THE REQUIREMENT OF LAW, ABOVE REFERRED TO, IS CIRCULATED FOR THE INFORMATION AND GUIDANCE OF ALL BUREAUS AND OFFICES OF THE DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE:

TABLE ITEMS CHARGEABLE TO 1/3 REPLACEMENT ITEMS NOT CHARGEABLE TO 1/3 VALUE OR $400 LIMIT ON MAINTENANCE, REPLACEMENT VALUE OR $400 LIMIT UPKEEP, AND REPAIR ON MAINTENANCE, UPKEEP, AND REPAIR ACCESSORIES (REPAIRS AND BATTERY CHARGING. REPLACEMENTS

BUT NOT ORIGINAL PURCHASES). BATTERY RENTAL. BATTERIES, REPLACEMENTS. GARAGE RENT. PAINTING. STORAGE RECONDITIONING OF INTEGRAL PARTS. GREASING. REPAIR LABOR. GASOLINE, OIL, GREASE, AND REPAIR PARTS.

ANTIFREEZE COMPOUNDS. SEAT COVERS (REPLACEMENTS). PAY OF OPERATORS. TOWING (IF FOR PURPOSE OF TIRES.

REPAIRING). TIRE BOOTS, CHAINS, LININGS,

MOUNTINGS, REPAIRS, AND

REPLACEMENTS.

TUBES.

TUBE REPAIRS AND REPLACEMENTS.

WASHING, POLISHING, AND WAXING.

TOWING (OTHER THAN FOR PURPOSE OF

REPAIRING).

DIRECTOR OF FINANCE.

AS THE CONGRESS HAS STATED SPECIFICALLY THE ITEMS WHICH ARE NOT TO BE INCLUDED IN THE LIMITATION UPON THE AMOUNT WHICH MAY BE EXPENDED FOR "MAINTENANCE, UPKEEP, AND REPAIR," THAT IS, ITEMS OF "GARAGE RENT, PAY OF OPERATORS, TIRES, FUEL, AND LUBRICANTS," IT FOLLOWS THAT ALL OTHER ITEMS OF MAINTENANCE, UPKEEP, AND REPAIR ARE TO BE INCLUDED IN THE LIMITATION. BATTERY CHARGING, BATTERY RENTAL, ANTIFREEZE COMPOUND AND WASHING, POLISHING, AND WAXING, ARE NOT WITHIN THE EXPRESS EXCEPTIONS AND ACCORDINGLY THE COST OF THESE ITEMS OR SERVICES MUST BE INCLUDED WITHIN THE ONE-THIRD REPLACEMENT VALUE OF THE $400 LUMP-SUM LIMITATION. OTHER THAN AS ABOVE INDICATED THIS OFFICE HAS NO OBJECTION TO THE PROMULGATION OF THE CIRCULAR IN THE FORM SUBMITTED.