B-41251, JUNE 13, 1944, 23 COMP. GEN. 951

B-41251: Jun 13, 1944

Additional Materials:

Contact:

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

 

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

TRANSPORTATION - CHANGE OF STATION - NAVY ENLISTED MEN ABSENT FROM DUTY AT TIME OF ORGANIZATION TRANSFER NAVY ENLISTED MEN WHO ARE ABSENT FROM THEIR STATION. - AT THE TIME THEIR ORGANIZATION IS TRANSFERRED. ARE NOT. AS FOLLOWS: (A) ARE MEN ASSIGNED TO THE 77TH NAVAL CONSTRUCTION BATTALION WHO WERE ABSENT AT THE TIME OF THE DEPARTURE OF THE TROOP TRAIN ABOARD WHICH THE BATTALION WAS TO BE TRANSPORTED FROM DAVISVILLE. WHO WERE FURNISHED TRANSPORTATION INDIVIDUALLY FROM DAVISVILLE. ENTITLED TO SUCH TRANSPORTATION AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE IF SUCH ABSENCE WAS: (1) WITH LEAVE? (2) OVER LEAVE NOT EXCUSED AS UNAVOIDABLE? (3) OVER LEAVE EXCUSED AS UNAVOIDABLE? (4) WITHOUT LEAVE? (B) IF THE ANSWER TO ANY OF THE QUESTIONS PRESENTED IN SUBPAR (A) IS IN THE NEGATIVE.

B-41251, JUNE 13, 1944, 23 COMP. GEN. 951

TRANSPORTATION - CHANGE OF STATION - NAVY ENLISTED MEN ABSENT FROM DUTY AT TIME OF ORGANIZATION TRANSFER NAVY ENLISTED MEN WHO ARE ABSENT FROM THEIR STATION--- WHETHER ON AUTHORIZED LEAVE, ABSENCE OVER LEAVE, OR ABSENCE WITHOUT LEAVE--- AT THE TIME THEIR ORGANIZATION IS TRANSFERRED, AND WHO RETURN TO THE STATION FROM WHICH THE ABSENCE BEGAN, ARE NOT, BY REASON OF SUCH ABSENCE, DEPRIVED OF THEIR RIGHT TO TRANSPORTATION FROM THE OLD TO THE NEW STATION AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE.

ASSISTANT COMPTROLLER GENERAL YATES TO THE SECRETARY OF THE NAVY, JUNE 13, 1944:

THERE HAS BEEN CONSIDERED YOUR LETTER OF APRIL 5, 1944, TRANSMITTING A LETTER FROM THE DISBURSING OFFICER, NAVAL ADVANCE BASE DEPOT, DAVISVILLE, RHODE ISLAND, WITH ENCLOSURES AND ACCOMPANYING INDORSEMENTS, RELATIVE TO TRANSPORTATION FURNISHED CERTAIN ENLISTED MEMBERS OF THE 77TH NAVAL CONSTRUCTION BATTALION WHO DID NOT ACCOMPANY THEIR ORGANIZATION AT THE TIME OF ITS TRANSFER BY TROOP TRAIN FROM DAVISVILLE, RHODE ISLAND, TO PORT HUENEME, CALIFORNIA, AND REQUESTING A DECISION ON THE SPECIFIC QUESTIONS SET FORTH IN PARAGRAPH 4 OF THE THIRD INDORSEMENT FROM THE CHIEF OF THE BUREAU OF SUPPLIES AND ACCOUNTS, AS FOLLOWS:

(A) ARE MEN ASSIGNED TO THE 77TH NAVAL CONSTRUCTION BATTALION WHO WERE ABSENT AT THE TIME OF THE DEPARTURE OF THE TROOP TRAIN ABOARD WHICH THE BATTALION WAS TO BE TRANSPORTED FROM DAVISVILLE, R.I., TO PORT HUENEME, CALIF., AND WHO WERE FURNISHED TRANSPORTATION INDIVIDUALLY FROM DAVISVILLE, R.I., TO PORT HUENEME, CALIF., ENTITLED TO SUCH TRANSPORTATION AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE IF SUCH ABSENCE WAS:

(1) WITH LEAVE?

(2) OVER LEAVE NOT EXCUSED AS UNAVOIDABLE?

(3) OVER LEAVE EXCUSED AS UNAVOIDABLE?

(4) WITHOUT LEAVE?

(B) IF THE ANSWER TO ANY OF THE QUESTIONS PRESENTED IN SUBPAR (A) IS IN THE NEGATIVE, SHOULD THE PAY ACCOUNTS OF THE INDIVIDUALS CONCERNED BE CHECKED:

(1) THE FULL VALUE OF THE TRANSPORTATION FURNISHED, OR

(2) THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE VALUE OF THE TRANSPORTATION FURNISHED TO THE INDIVIDUAL AND WHAT IT WOULD HAVE COST THE GOVERNMENT TO TRANSPORT THE INDIVIDUAL IF HE HAD ACCOMPANIED THE BATTALION?

IT APPEARS THAT THE ENLISTED MEN REFERRED TO WERE FURNISHED TRANSPORTATION TO THE NEW STATION OF THEIR ORGANIZATION AND THAT THE COST OF THE TRANSPORTATION FURNISHED HAS BEEN CHECKED AGAINST THEIR ACCOUNTS. UNDER SUCH CIRCUMSTANCES, THIS OFFICE IS NOT AUTHORIZED OR REQUIRED BY LAW TO RENDER A DECISION WITH RESPECT TO THE PARTICULAR CASES MENTIONED. SEE 19 COMP. GEN. 781. HOWEVER, THE SUBMISSION WILL BE TREATED AS A REQUEST FOR ADVANCE DECISION FOR THE GUIDANCE OF THE DEPARTMENT IN HANDLING SIMILAR CASES IN THE FUTURE.

THE DECISION OF JUNE 14, 1930, A-32005, CITED IN THE LETTER OF THE CHIEF OF THE BUREAU OF SUPPLIES AND ACCOUNTS, DID NOT CONSIDER THE QUESTION OF AN ENLISTED MAN'S RIGHT TO TRANSPORTATION TO HIS NEW STATION WHERE HIS ORGANIZATION HAD CHANGED STATIONS DURING HIS ABSENCE ON LEAVE. THEREFORE, THAT DECISION IS NOT TO BE CONSTRUED AS REQUIRING ENLISTED MEN WHO ARE ABSENT FROM THEIR STATION AT THE TIME THEIR ORGANIZATION IS TRANSFERRED AND WHO RETURN TO THE STATION FROM WHICH LEAVE WAS GRANTED PURSUANT TO THE ORDER AUTHORIZING LEAVE, TO PAY THE COST OF THEIR TRANSPORTATION TO THE NEW STATION.

THE GRANTING OF LEAVE TO ENLISTED MEN IS, OF COURSE, AN ADMINISTRATIVE MATTER; AND WHERE AN ENLISTED MAN IS ON AUTHORIZED LEAVE AT THE TIME HIS ORGANIZATION IS TRANSFERRED THE OBLIGATION OF THE GOVERNMENT TO TRANSPORT HIM TO HIS NEW STATION WOULD NOT APPEAR TO BE LESSENED BY REASON OF THE MAN'S LEAVE STATUS, WHERE HE PROPERLY RETURNS TO THE OLD STATION AT THE EXPIRATION OF HIS LEAVE. IT IS WITHIN THE AUTHORITY OF THE PROPER OFFICIALS TO CANCEL THE MAN'S LEAVE AT ANY TIME AND ORDER HIS RETURN TO HIS DUTY STATION; AND WHILE IT IS RECOGNIZED THAT IN SOME CASES IT MAY BE IMPRACTICABLE OR IMPOSSIBLE TO EFFECT THE MAN'S RETURN TO HIS STATION PRIOR TO THE TRANSFER OF HIS ORGANIZATION, NO LEGAL OR EQUITABLE BASIS IS PERCEIVED FOR DEPRIVING THE MAN OF THE TRANSPORTATION TO WHICH HE ORDINARILY WOULD BE ENTITLED ON CHANGE OF STATION, UNDER COMPETENT ORDERS, BY REASON OF THE FACT THAT HE WAS ABSENT FROM HIS STATION ON AUTHORIZED LEAVE AT THE TIME THE CHANGE OF STATION OF HIS ORGANIZATION WAS EFFECTED. IN THIS CONNECTION, IT SEEMS PROPER TO NOTE THAT ARMY REGULATIONS SPECIFICALLY PROVIDE THAT ENLISTED MEN WHO HAVE RETURNED TO THE STATION FROM WHICH FURLOUGHED, THEIR COMPANY HAVING CHANGED STATIONS DURING THEIR ABSENCE, ARE ENTITLED TO TRANSPORTATION FROM THE OLD TO THE NEW STATION OF THEIR COMPANY. ARMY REGULATIONS 55-120, PARAGRAPH 11B (A). THE PRINCIPLES ON WHICH THIS PROVISION OF ARMY REGULATIONS IS BASED WOULD SEEM TO BE EQUALLY APPLICABLE TO ENLISTED PERSONNEL OF THE NAVY.

WITH REGARD TO THE QUESTIONS AS TO WHETHER MEN ABSENT OVER LEAVE, NOT EXCUSED AS UNAVOIDABLE, AND MEN ABSENT WITHOUT LEAVE AT THE TIME OF CHANGE OF STATION OF THEIR ORGANIZATION, ARE ENTITLED TO TRANSPORTATION AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE TO THE NEW STATION OF THEIR ORGANIZATION, IT WOULD APPEAR THAT WHERE SUCH MEN HAVE RETURNED TO THEIR OLD STATION THEIR RIGHT TO TRANSPORTATION TO THE NEW STATION AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE IS NOT FORFEITED DUE TO THEIR BEING ON UNAUTHORIZED LEAVE AT THE TIME THE ORGANIZATION CHANGED STATIONS. AN ENLISTED MAN ABSENT WITHOUT LEAVE OR ABSENT OVER LEAVE FORFEITS ALL PAY ACCRUING DURING THE PERIOD OF UNAUTHORIZED ABSENCE ( ARTICLE 1799, NAVY REGULATIONS) AND UPON RETURN TO THIS STATION IS SUBJECT TO SUCH PUNISHMENT BY WAY OF FINE OR OTHERWISE AS DEEMED PROPER BY COMPETENT AUTHORITY, WITHIN THE LIMITS OF LAW AND REGULATIONS ( ARTICLES 1692 AND 1693, NAVY REGULATIONS). BUT WHERE A MAN HAS RETURNED TO THE STATION FROM WHICH HE ABSENTED HIMSELF WITHOUT AUTHORITY, THE MERE FACT THAT HE WAS SO ABSENT WHEN HIS ORGANIZATION WAS TRANSFERRED TO ANOTHER STATION DOES NOT OPERATE TO FORFEIT HIS RIGHT TO TRANSPORTATION AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE TO THE NEW DUTY STATION IN THE ABSENCE OF A REGULATION SPECIFICALLY SO PROVIDING. COMPARE 1 COMP. GEN. 400.

ACCORDINGLY, QUESTION (A) (1), (2), (3) AND (4) QUOTED ABOVE ARE ANSWERED IN THE AFFIRMATIVE, MAKING UNNECESSARY ANY ANSWER TO QUESTIONS (B) (1) AND (2).