B-37848, NOVEMBER 3, 1943, 23 COMP. GEN. 331

B-37848: Nov 3, 1943

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THE AUTHORIZATION THEREFORE SHOULD INDICATE IN A SUMMARY WAY THE FACTS UPON WHICH IT IS BASED. 1943: I HAVE YOUR LETTER OF OCTOBER 23. AS FOLLOWS: THE EFFECTIVE PROSECUTION OF THE WAS HAS BEEN ADVERSELY AFFECTED IN A MATERIAL DEGREE BY CRITICAL MANPOWER SHORTAGES IN CERTAIN AREAS OF THE COUNTRY WHERE PRIVATE INDUSTRY AND GOVERNMENT AGENCIES HAVE ABSORBED ALL AVAILABLE ELEMENTS OF THE LOCAL LABOR MARKET. IT IS IMPERATIVE THAT MEASURES BE TAKEN TO EXPEDITE RECRUITMENT OF PERSONNEL OUTSIDE THE AREAS OF CRITICAL SHORTAGE FOR SERVICE WITHIN SUCH AREAS. THE DEPARTMENT CONSIDERS THE PROBLEM TO BE OF SUFFICIENT GRAVITY TO WARRANT FULL EXPLORATION OF ALL POSSIBLE MEASURES WHICH WILL EASE PRESENT BARRIERS HINDERING THE WORK OF THE MILITARY ESTABLISHMENT.

B-37848, NOVEMBER 3, 1943, 23 COMP. GEN. 331

TRAVELING EXPENSES - WAR DEPARTMENT EMPLOYEES IN VIEW OF THE BROAD AUTHORITY AND DISCRETION VESTED IN THE SECRETARY OF WAR UNDER THE ACT OF JULY 2, 1940, TO USE WAR DEPARTMENT APPROPRIATIONS FOR VARIOUS PURPOSES, INCLUDING THE CONSTRUCTION AND OPERATION OF MILITARY FACILITIES BY GOVERNMENT PERSONNEL, AND THE PAYMENT OF "SUCH* * *TRAVEL EXPENSES, AS HE MAY DEEM NECESSARY TO CARRY OUT THE PURPOSES OF THIS ACT," THE TRAVELING EXPENSES--- WITHIN THE LIMITS OF THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS--- OF NEW EMPLOYEES TO THEIR FIRST DUTY STATIONS MAY BE PAID FROM FUNDS OTHERWISE AVAILABLE, UPON A DETERMINATION BY THE SECRETARY THAT CERTAIN EMPLOYMENTS OR CLASSES OF EMPLOYMENTS NECESSARY TO CARRY OUT A PROJECT UNDER THE SAID ACT CANNOT BE EFFECTUATED WITHOUT THE PAYMENT OF SUCH EXPENSES. WHERE THE SECRETARY OF WAR DETERMINES THAT CERTAIN EMPLOYMENTS OR CLASSES OF EMPLOYMENTS NECESSARY TO CARRY OUT A PROJECT UNDER THE ACT OF JULY 2, 1940, CANNOT BE EFFECTUATED WITHOUT THE PAYMENT OF NEW EMPLOYEES' TRAVEL EXPENSES TO THEIR FIRST DUTY STATIONS IN AREAS OF CRITICAL MANPOWER SHORTAGES, THE AUTHORIZATION THEREFORE SHOULD INDICATE IN A SUMMARY WAY THE FACTS UPON WHICH IT IS BASED, SHOULD STIPULATE THE AREAS OF CRITICAL MANPOWER SHORTAGE AND THE CLASSES OF EMPLOYMENT TO BE BENEFITED, AND SHOULD BE REFERRED TO IN ANY INDIVIDUAL TRAVEL ORDERS ISSUED UNDER ITS AUTHORITY.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL WARREN TO THE SECRETARY OF WAR, NOVEMBER 3, 1943:

I HAVE YOUR LETTER OF OCTOBER 23, 1943, AS FOLLOWS:

THE EFFECTIVE PROSECUTION OF THE WAS HAS BEEN ADVERSELY AFFECTED IN A MATERIAL DEGREE BY CRITICAL MANPOWER SHORTAGES IN CERTAIN AREAS OF THE COUNTRY WHERE PRIVATE INDUSTRY AND GOVERNMENT AGENCIES HAVE ABSORBED ALL AVAILABLE ELEMENTS OF THE LOCAL LABOR MARKET. IN SUCH INSTANCES, AND PARTICULARLY WHERE THE NATURE OF WAR INDUSTRIES AND WAR DEPARTMENT ADMINISTRATION PROHIBIT DECENTRALIZATION, IT IS IMPERATIVE THAT MEASURES BE TAKEN TO EXPEDITE RECRUITMENT OF PERSONNEL OUTSIDE THE AREAS OF CRITICAL SHORTAGE FOR SERVICE WITHIN SUCH AREAS. THE DEPARTMENT CONSIDERS THE PROBLEM TO BE OF SUFFICIENT GRAVITY TO WARRANT FULL EXPLORATION OF ALL POSSIBLE MEASURES WHICH WILL EASE PRESENT BARRIERS HINDERING THE WORK OF THE MILITARY ESTABLISHMENT.

THE SINGLE INDUCEMENT WHICH WILL MOST CONTRIBUTE TO THE DESIRED END IS CONSIDERED TO BE THAT OF FURNISHING TRANSPORTATION TO PERSONS RECRUITED IN OTHER AREAS. IN THIS CONNECTION, IT IS PERTINENT TO POINT OUT THAT THE NAVY DEPARTMENT HAS FOUND THIS FACT TO BE OF SUFFICIENT GRAVITY TO WARRANT THE ALLOCATION AND USE OF FUNDS FROM THE EMERGENCY FUND OF THE PRESIDENT TO MEET OBLIGATIONS INCURRED BY THE CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION FOR RECRUITMENT EXPENSES NECESSARY TO PROCURE AND TRANSPORT PERSONNEL INTO AREAS OF CRITICAL SHORTAGE WHERE NAVY DEPARTMENT ESTABLISHMENTS ARE IN OPERATION.

IT IS THE VIEW OF THE WAR DEPARTMENT THAT AUTHORITY EXISTS FOR THE USE OF ITS CURRENT APPROPRIATIONS FOR PAYMENT OF NECESSARY TRAVEL EXPENSES OF PERSONS SELECTED FOR EMPLOYMENT IN CRITICAL AREAS WHEN THE MANPOWER SHORTAGES CANNOT BE ALLEVIATED WITHOUT PAYMENT OF SUCH TRAVEL EXPENSES. IN SUPPORT OF THIS VIEW, ATTENTION IS DIRECTED TO THE PROVISIONS OF SECTION 4 (A) OF THE ACT OF JULY 2, 1940, ( PUBLIC LAW 703--- 76TH CONGRESS), WHICH IS IN PERTINENT PART AS OLLOWS:

"SEC. 4 (A) THE SECRETARY OF WAR IS FURTHER AUTHORIZED TO EMPLOY SUCH ADDITIONAL PERSONNEL AT THE SEAT OF GOVERNMENT AND ELSEWHERE, AND TO PROVIDE FOR SUCH PRINTING AND BINDING, COMMUNICATION SERVICE, SUPPLIES, AND TRAVEL EXPENSES, AS HE MAY DEEM NECESSARY TO CARRY OUT THE PURPOSES OF THIS ACT* * *.'

IN VIEW OF THE IMPERATIVE NEED FOR RECRUITING NECESSARY PERSONNEL, YOUR EARLY ADVICE IS REQUESTED AS TO WHETHER CURRENT APPROPRIATIONS AVAILABLE TO THE WAR DEPARTMENT FOR TRAVELING EXPENSES MAY BE USED TO DEFRAY TRAVELING EXPENSES OF SELECTED PERSONNEL TO THE FIRST DUTY STATION IN CRITICAL AREAS, PURSUANT TO THE ACT APPROVED 2 JULY 1940 ( PUBLIC LAW--- 76TH CONGRESS), OR OTHERWISE.

THE STATUTORY PROVISION QUOTED IN YOUR LETTER SUPPLEMENTS AND PROVIDES THE MEANS OF EXECUTING THE SUBSTANTIVE PROVISIONS OF THE PRECEDING SECTIONS OF THE ACT, 54 STAT. 712, 713, 50 U.S.C. APP. 1171, WHICH BROADLY AUTHORIZE THE USE OF WAR DEPARTMENT APPROPRIATIONS FOR VARIOUS PURPOSES, INCLUDING THE CONSTRUCTION, ETC., OF MILITARY POSTS AND FACILITIES, THE PURCHASE AND MANUFACTURE OF MILITARY EQUIPMENT AND SUPPLIES, AND THE OPERATION OF SUCH FACILITIES, BY GOVERNMENT PERSONNEL OR UNDER CONTRACT. THOSE SUBSTANTIVE PROVISIONS WERE CONTINUED IN FORCE BY SECTION 13 OF THE ACT OF JUNE 5, 1942, 56 STAT. 317, 50 U.S.C. APP. 773, WHICH, BY EVIDENT IMPLICATION, CONTINUES THE PROCEDURAL OR IMPLEMENTING PROVISIONS OF THE QUOTED SECTION (4A) OF THE ORIGINAL ACT.

THE RULE THAT THE COST OF REPORTING TO THE EMPLOYEE'S FIRST DUTY STATION IS PERSONAL, NOT OFFICIAL, IS A GENERAL ONE, AND IS APPLICABLE WHEN THE SALARY OF THE POSITION TO BE FILLED IS FIXED BY LAW OR REGULATION, OR, IF THE SALARY BE NOT SO FIXED, WHEN NO PROVISION FOR TRAVEL EXPENSES IS MADE A PART OF THE COMPENSATION AGREED UPON IN ADVANCE FOR THE POSITION. COMP. GEN. 392; ID. 69; B-37105, OCTOBER 18, 1943, 23 COMP. GEN. 280. REFERRING TO THE PARTICULAR ACT OF JULY 2, 1940, THE ORIGINAL DRAFT WHICH EVENTUATED OR CULMINATED IN THAT ENACTMENT ( H.R. 9850) CONTAINED ONLY THE USUAL PROVISION FOR "TRAVEL EXPENSES," WHICH, OF COURSE, WOULD HAVE IMPLIED THE APPLICATION OF THE SETTLED RULE JUST REFERRED TO. BY AMENDMENT, HOWEVER, THE LANGUAGE OF THE DRAFT SIGNIFICANTLY WAS CHANGED TO PROVIDE FOR "SUCH* * *TRAVEL EXPENSES, AS HE (THE SECRETARY OF WAR) MAY DEEM NECESSARY TO CARRY OUT THE PURPOSES OF THIS ACT.'

IT HAS BEEN RECOGNIZED THAT THE ACT OF JULY 2, 1940, VESTS A BROAD DISCRETION AND AUTHORITY IN THE SECRETARY OF WAR (20 COMP. GEN. 196; ID. 245) BUT WITHOUT ENTAILING A COLLECTIVE WAIVER OF THE ACCEPTED RULES FOR THE CONDUCT OF THE WAR DEPARTMENT'S FUNCTIONS (21 COMP. GEN. 273). SPECIFICALLY AS TO TRAVEL EXPENSES, ANY REAL SIGNIFICANCE OF THE UNUSUAL LANGUAGE QUOTED IS LOST IF IT DOES NOT RESULT THAT SUCH NECESSITY JUSTIFIES THE PAYMENT OF THE USUAL TRAVEL EXPENSES IN CERTAIN SITUATIONS WHERE, OTHERWISE, TRAVEL EXPENSES LAWFULLY COULD NOT BE PAID. WHAT DIVERSE SITUATIONS ARE INCLUDED NEED NOT NOW BE GENERALIZED, BUT IT MAY BE ACCEPTED THAT IF A CERTAIN EMPLOYMENT OR CLASS OF EMPLOYMENTS NECESSARY TO CARRY OUT A PROJECT UNDER THE ACT OF 1940 CANNOT BE EFFECTUATED WITHOUT THE PAYMENT OF THE NEW EMPLOYEES' TRAVEL EXPENSES TO THE FIRST DUTY STATIONS, AND THE SECRETARY OF WAR SHOULD SO FIND AND DETERMINE, SUCH EXPENSES WITHIN THE LIMITS OF THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS WOULD BE PAYABLE FROM FUNDS OTHERWISE AVAILABLE.

FOR SUCH PURPOSE, THE SECRETARY'S AUTHORIZATION PROPERLY WOULD (1) INDICATE IN A SUMMARY WAY THE FACTS UPON WHICH IT IS BASED, (2) STIPULATE, WITH REASONABLE PARTICULARITY, THE AREAS OF CRITICAL SHORTAGE INTO WHICH THE NEW APPOINTEES ARE TO BE SENT AND THE CLASSES OF EMPLOYMENT TO BE BENEFITED, AND (3) BE REFERRED TO IN ANY INDIVIDUAL TRAVEL ORDER ISSUED UNDER ITS AUTHORITY. ALSO, IT WOULD BE APPROPRIATE TO REQUIRE OF SUCH APPOINTEES AN UNDERTAKING TO SERVE SOME MINIMUM PERIOD OF TIME AT THE NEW POST, IN ORDER THAT THE PURPOSE OF THE TRAVEL ALLOWANCE BE NOT DEFEATED.