B-70069, OCTOBER 23, 1947, 27 COMP. GEN. 236

B-70069: Oct 23, 1947

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ACTUAL EXPENSES INCURRED BY AN EMPLOYEE IN SHIPPING HIS HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS UPON A PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION WITHIN THE CONTINENTAL UNITED STATES NO LONGER ARE A FACTOR. REIMBURSEMENT IS AUTHORIZED ON A COMMUTED BASIS AT THE APPLICABLE RATES FIXED BY SCHEDULE A OF THE REGULATIONS FOR THE DISTANCE AND WEIGHT INVOLVED. AN EMPLOYEE MAY NOT BE REIMBURSED AN AMOUNT GREATER THAN THE OTHERWISE PROPER COMMUTED ALLOWANCE ON THE BASIS THAT HE WAS REQUIRED TO PAY SUCH AMOUNT BECAUSE OF A MINIMUM WEIGHT LIMITATION PRESCRIBED BY STATE TARIFF. 1947: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF OCTOBER 2. A CERTIFIED COPY OF TRAVEL AUTHORIZATION NUMBER USES/41 1272 AUTHORIZING THE CHANGE OF OFFICIAL STATION IS ATTACHED.

B-70069, OCTOBER 23, 1947, 27 COMP. GEN. 236

TRANSPORTATION - HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS - EXTENT OF REIMBURSEMENT ON COMMUTED BASIS IN VIEW OF THE FACT THAT, UNDER EXECUTIVE ORDER NO. 9805, ISSUED PURSUANT TO SECTION 1 OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE EXPENSE STATUTE OF AUGUST 2, 1946, ACTUAL EXPENSES INCURRED BY AN EMPLOYEE IN SHIPPING HIS HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS UPON A PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION WITHIN THE CONTINENTAL UNITED STATES NO LONGER ARE A FACTOR, INSTEAD, REIMBURSEMENT IS AUTHORIZED ON A COMMUTED BASIS AT THE APPLICABLE RATES FIXED BY SCHEDULE A OF THE REGULATIONS FOR THE DISTANCE AND WEIGHT INVOLVED, AN EMPLOYEE MAY NOT BE REIMBURSED AN AMOUNT GREATER THAN THE OTHERWISE PROPER COMMUTED ALLOWANCE ON THE BASIS THAT HE WAS REQUIRED TO PAY SUCH AMOUNT BECAUSE OF A MINIMUM WEIGHT LIMITATION PRESCRIBED BY STATE TARIFF.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL WARREN TO EUGENE LOVE, DEPARTMENT OF LABOR, OCTOBER 23, 1947:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF OCTOBER 2, 1947, FILE REFERENCE BFA- 1, AS FOLLOWS:

THE ATTACHED VOUCHER, BUREAU NUMBER 2783, IN THE AMOUNT OF $25.20 IN FAVOR OF GEORGE COLLINS, HAS BEEN PRESENTED TO ME FOR CERTIFICATION.

THE VOUCHER COVERS THE MOVEMENT OF MR. COLLINS' HOUSEHOLD GOODS WEIGHING 480 POUNDS, FROM DES MOINES TO DAVENPORT, IOWA, A DISTANCE OF 177 MILES. A CERTIFIED COPY OF TRAVEL AUTHORIZATION NUMBER USES/41 1272 AUTHORIZING THE CHANGE OF OFFICIAL STATION IS ATTACHED.

ALTHOUGH THE SHIPMENT WEIGHED ONLY 480 POUNDS, MR. COLLINS HAD TO PAY AT THE RATE OF A 1,000 POUND MINIMUM SHIPMENT AT $2.52 PER 100 POUNDS, AS EVIDENCED BY THE ATTACHED BILL OF LADING. I HAVE OBTAINED INFORMAL VERIFICATION FROM YOUR OFFICE THAT INTRA-STATE SHIPMENT OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS BY VAN IN IOWA IS SUBJECT TO A 1,000 POUND MINIMUM LIMITATION. THE AMOUNT ALLOWABLE ON THIS VOUCHER, IF FIGURED IN ACCORDANCE WITH SECTIONS 12, 13, AND 16 OF TITLE II OF EXECUTIVE ORDER NUMBER 9805, WOULD BE $19.44 (4.8 TIMES $4.05). MR. COLLINS CONTENDS THAT SINCE IT IS NOT POSSIBLE TO HAVE SUCH A SHIPMENT FIGURED ON THE BASIS OF THE ACTUAL WEIGHT OF THE GOODS TRANSPORTED, HE SHOULD BE ALLOWED THE 1,000 POUND MINIMUM WEIGHT REQUIRED BY IOWA TARIFFS TIMES THE $2.52 RATE PER 100 POUNDS FOR 177 MILES, A TOTAL OF $25.20.

YOUR ADVICE IS REQUESTED AS TO THE AMOUNT WHICH SHOULD BE CERTIFIED ON THIS VOUCHER.

IN ADDITION TO DIRECTING A CHANGE OF PERMANENT DUTY STATION, THE TRAVEL ORDERS OF JANUARY 29, 1947, AUTHORIZED SHIPMENT OF THE EMPLOYEE'S HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE PROVISIONS OF EXECUTIVE ORDER 9805, AND PURSUANT THERETO MOVEMENT OF THE GOODS WAS ACCOMPLISHED ON SEPTEMBER 15, 1947.

SECTION 12 OF EXECUTIVE ORDER 9805, EFFECTIVE NOVEMBER 1, 1946, AND PROMULGATED PURSUANT TO SECTION 1 OF THE ACT OF AUGUST 2, 1946, PUBLIC LAW 600, 60 STAT. 806, PROVIDES THAT IN LIEU OF THE PAYMENT OF ACTUAL EXPENSES INCURRED IN CONNECTION WITH THE TRANSPORTATION OF AN EMPLOYEE'S HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS WITHIN THE CONTINENTAL UNITED STATES, REIMBURSEMENT SHALL BE MADE TO THE EMPLOYEE ON A COMMUTATED BASIS AT THE RATES FIXED IN SCHEDULE A OF THE REGULATIONS AND THAT "THE AMOUNT PAYABLE SHALL BE THE PRODUCT OF THE APPLICABLE RATE AND THE NET WEIGHT OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS AND PERSONAL EFFECTS ACTUALLY SHIPPED BY THE CARRIER FOR THE EMPLOYEE.'

UNDER THE LAW AND REGULATIONS CURRENTLY IN FORCE, SUPRA, THE ACTUAL EXPENSE INCURRED BY AN EMPLOYEE IN SHIPPING HIS HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS, UPON A PERMANENT TRANSFER OF STATION WITHIN THE CONTINENTAL UNITED STATES, NO LONGER IS A FACTOR--- REIMBURSEMENT, INSTEAD, BEING AUTHORIZED UPON A COMMUTATED BASIS. IT NOW IS THE RESPONSIBILITY OF THE EMPLOYEE TO SELECT WHATEVER MEANS OF SHIPMENT BEST SUITS HIS PURPOSES, AND THE GOVERNMENT WILL PAY THE SAME SUM, IRRESPECTIVE OF THE METHOD THE EMPLOYEE MAY SELECT. THAT SUM, BY THE SPECIFIC TERMS OF EXECUTIVE ORDER 9805, IS TO BE DETERMINED FROM THE TABLES PRESCRIBED THEREIN, AND THIS OFFICE MAY NOT ENLARGE, BY CONSTRUCTION, THE MAXIMUM BENEFITS THEREIN PRESCRIBED BASED UPON THE WEIGHT OF A SHIPMENT OF A GIVEN AMOUNT OF GOODS FOR A GIVEN DISTANCE.

ACCORDINGLY, THE VOUCHER, WHICH IS RETURNED HEREWITH, MAY NOT BE CERTIFIED FOR PAYMENT IN A SUM IN EXCESS OF $19.44.