B-40196, MARCH 3, 1944, 23 COMP. GEN. 651

B-40196: Mar 3, 1944

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1944: I HAVE YOUR LETTER OF FEBRUARY 17. HAS BEEN INCREASING IN ITS IMPORTANCE AS THE TECHNIQUES OF OPERATION AND THE METHODS OF DESIGN HAVE BEEN DEVELOPED AND IMPROVED TO MAKE IT COMPARABLE IN RELIABILITY TO THE ESTABLISHED METHODS OF FABRICATION. WELDING OPERATORS AND THE STRUCTURAL ENGINEERS WHO HAVE DEVELOPED THE ART. THE WELDING SCHOOL OPERATED BY THAT COMPANY IS A SOURCE OF SUCH INSTRUCTION AND IS SUITED TO THIS PURPOSE. IT IS DESIRED TO SEND SIX STRUCTURAL ENGINEERS AND TEN CONSTRUCTION ENGINEERS TO CLEVELAND. A DECISION IS REQUESTED AS TO WHETHER YOU CONSIDER THE FUNDS AVAILABLE UNDER THE ABOVE-QUOTED LEGISLATION FOR THE PURPOSES INDICATED. IN VIEW OF THE STATUTORY PROVISION QUOTED IN YOUR LETTER AND THE PURPOSE FOR WHICH THE ENGINEERS ARE TO TAKE THE SPECIAL COURSE AND ATTEND THE WELDING SCHOOL.

B-40196, MARCH 3, 1944, 23 COMP. GEN. 651

OFFICERS AND EMPLOYEES - EXPENSES OF SPECIAL COURSES AND ATTENDANCE AT SCHOOLS - APPROPRIATION AVAILABILITY WHILE, AS A GENERAL RULE, APPROPRIATED MONEYS MAY NOT BE USED TO SEND GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES TO SCHOOLS OR TO TAKE SPECIAL COURSE OF TRAINING IN VIEW OF THE PROVISION IN THE INDEPENDENT OFFICES APPROPRIATION ACT, 1944, APPROPRIATING FUNDS TO THE PUBLIC BUILDINGS ADMINISTRATION "FOR ADVANCE STUDIES FOR FEDERAL BUILDING CONSTRUCTION," EXPENSES INCIDENT TO DESIGNATED EMPLOYEES ATTENDING A WELDING SCHOOL AND TAKING A SPECIAL COURSE IN ORDER TO MAKE A STUDY OF WELDING AS A METHOD OF CONSTRUCTING STEEL-FRAMED BUILDINGS MAY BE PAID FROM SAID APPROPRIATION, INCLUDING TUITION, PER DIEM IN LIEU OF SUBSISTENCE AND THEIR REGULAR COMPENSATION WHILE TAKING THE COURSE AND ATTENDING THE SCHOOL.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL WARREN TO THE FEDERAL WORKS ADMINISTRATOR, MARCH 3, 1944:

I HAVE YOUR LETTER OF FEBRUARY 17, 1944, AS FOLLOWS:

PUBLIC LAW 90, 78TH CONGRESS, CHAPTER 145--- ST SESSION, APPROVED JUNE 26, 1943, APPROPRIATED FIVE HUNDRED THOUSAND DOLLARS ($500,000) FOR ADVANCED STUDIES FOR FEDERAL BUILDING CONSTRUCTION AS FOLLOWS:

"* * * PROVIDED FURTHER, THAT NOT TO EXCEED $5000,000 MAY BE UTILIZED FOR ADVANCE STUDIES FOR FEDERAL BUILDING CONSTRUCTION, SUCH AMOUNT OF THIS APPROPRIATION TO REMAIN AVAILABLE UNTIL EXPENDED.'

IN CARRYING OUT THE OBJECTIVES OF THIS LEGISLATION, IT HAS BEEN DETERMINED THAT A STUDY SHOULD BE MADE OF WELDING AS A METHOD OF CONSTRUCTION FOR STEEL-FRAMED BUILDINGS. THIS STUDY SHOULD BE MADE BY KEY ENGINEERS IN THE OFFICES OF THE SUPERVISING ARCHITECT AND THE SUPERVISING ENGINEER IN ORDER THAT THE KNOWLEDGE GAINED FROM THIS STUDY MAY BE DIRECTLY AVAILABLE IN THE DESIGN AND CONSTRUCTION OF FUTURE FEDERAL BUILDINGS.

THE NEED FOR THIS STUDY ARISES FROM THE FACT THAT WELDING, AS A METHOD FOR FABRICATING STRUCTURAL STEEL, HAS BEEN INCREASING IN ITS IMPORTANCE AS THE TECHNIQUES OF OPERATION AND THE METHODS OF DESIGN HAVE BEEN DEVELOPED AND IMPROVED TO MAKE IT COMPARABLE IN RELIABILITY TO THE ESTABLISHED METHODS OF FABRICATION, SUCH AS BOLTING AND RIVETING. IT MUST BE CONSIDERED FOR USE IN THE CONSTRUCTION OF FUTURE FEDERAL BUILDINGS.

THE FIRST STEP IN SUCH A STUDY MUST BE THE FIRST HAND INSTRUCTION OF THESE ENGINEERS IN THE OPERATIONS AND DESIGN METHODS USED BY THE WELDING SHOPS, WELDING OPERATORS AND THE STRUCTURAL ENGINEERS WHO HAVE DEVELOPED THE ART. WITH THAT INSTRUCTION IN THE ART ITSELF, OUR ENGINEERS CAN THEN GO ON TO STUDY ITS APPLICABILITY TO THE CONSTRUCTION OF FEDERAL BUILDINGS. WITHOUT THAT PREPARATION, THE STUDY CANNOT BE MADE WITH PROPER UNDERSTANDING OF THE SUBJECT.

AFTER A CAREFUL SURVEY, IT HAS BEEN FOUND THAT THE COURSE IN WELDING ENGINEERING AND DESIGN OFFERED BY THE LINCOLN ELECTRIC COMPANY OF CLEVELAND, OHIO, AND THE WELDING SCHOOL OPERATED BY THAT COMPANY IS A SOURCE OF SUCH INSTRUCTION AND IS SUITED TO THIS PURPOSE.

ACCORDINGLY, IT IS DESIRED TO SEND SIX STRUCTURAL ENGINEERS AND TEN CONSTRUCTION ENGINEERS TO CLEVELAND, OHIO, FOR A PERIOD OF TWO WEEKS TO ATTEND A SPECIAL COURSE IN WELDING ENGINEERING AND DESIGN CONDUCTED BY THE LINCOLN ELECTRIC COMPANY AND TO SPEND ONE WEEK IN THE WELDING SCHOOL OPERATED BY THAT COMPANY; TO PAY THEIR TRANSPORTATION EXPENSE, PER DIEM IN LIEU OF SUBSISTENCE, THEIR REGISTRATION FEE, EXPENSES INCIDENTAL TO THE COURSE, AND THEIR SALARIES FOR THE TIME REQUIRED TO ENABLE THEM TO ACCOMPLISH THE ABOVE.

A DECISION IS REQUESTED AS TO WHETHER YOU CONSIDER THE FUNDS AVAILABLE UNDER THE ABOVE-QUOTED LEGISLATION FOR THE PURPOSES INDICATED.

IN VIEW OF THE STATUTORY PROVISION QUOTED IN YOUR LETTER AND THE PURPOSE FOR WHICH THE ENGINEERS ARE TO TAKE THE SPECIAL COURSE AND ATTEND THE WELDING SCHOOL, THE GENERAL RULE AGAINST THE USE OF APPROPRIATED MONEYS TO SEND GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES TO SCHOOLS OR TO TAKE SPECIAL COURSES OF TRAINING IS NOT FOR APPLICATION HERE.

IN DECISION OF OCTOBER 20, 1939, 19 COMP. GEN. 448, IT WAS HELD, QUOTING FROM THE SYLLABUS:

IN VIEW OF THE GENERAL PURPOSE OF THE NATIONAL CANCER INSTITUTE ACT, 50 STAT. 559, AND THE BROAD PROVISIONS OF SECTION 2 (A) AND 5 (F) THEREOF, THE SURGEON GENERAL MAY DESIGNATE GOVERNMENT OFFICERS AND EMPLOYEES FOR COURSES IN CANCER PREVENTION, ETC., THE TUITION TO BE PAID AS A PART OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE EXPENSES OF THE NATIONAL CANCER INSTITUTE, AND WHILE SO DETAILED SUCH EMPLOYEES MAY BE PAID THEIR REGULAR COMPENSATION AND, IF TEMPORARILY AWAY FROM OFFICIAL HEADQUARTERS, MAY BE REIMBURSED ACTUAL TRAVELING EXPENSES AND PAID PER DIEM IN LIEU OF SUBSISTENCE, IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS, BUT THEY MAY NOT BE ALLOWED THE $10 PER DIEM ALLOWANCE AUTHORIZED TO BE PAID TO "PERSONS" DESIGNATED UNDER SECTION 5 (B) OF THE ACT.

THE LANGUAGE OF THE PROVISION HERE IN QUESTION REASONABLY IMPLIES THE ACQUISITION OF KNOWLEDGE NOT PRESENTLY AVAILABLE TO THE FEDERAL WORKS AGENCY AND, ACCORDINGLY, IF IT BE DETERMINED ADMINISTRATIVELY THAT IT IS NECESSARY IN CONNECTION WITH SUCH ADVANCE STUDIES TO PROVIDE PRELIMINARY INSTRUCTION AND TRAINING SUCH AS OFFERED BY THE LINCOLN ELECTRIC COMPANY OF CLEVELAND, OHIO, THERE IS PERCEIVED NO LEGAL OBJECTION TO THE USE OF THE APPROPRIATION REFERRED TO IN THE QUOTED PROVISION FOR ALL NECESSARY EXPENSES INCIDENT TO THE ATTENDANCE OF THE DESIGNATED OFFICERS OR EMPLOYEES AT THE SPECIAL COURSE AND WELDING SCHOOL AS PROPOSED, INCLUDING TUITION, TRAVELING EXPENSES, PER DIEM IN LIEU OF SUBSISTENCE AND THEIR REGULAR COMPENSATION WHILE ATTENDING SUCH COURSE AND SCHOOL.