B-70497, NOVEMBER 12, 1947, 27 COMP. GEN. 274

B-70497: Nov 12, 1947

Additional Materials:

Contact:

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

 

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

FOR DECISION AS TO WHETHER PAYMENT IS AUTHORIZED ON A VOUCHER SUBMITTED THEREWITH IN FAVOR OF MRS. WAS REPORTED KILLED IN ACTION IN THE PACIFIC OCEAN AREA ON APRIL 2. IT IS SHOWN THAT THE OFFICER'S HOME OF RECORD UPON ENTERING THE SERVICE WAS EASLEY. PROVIDES: THE DEPENDENTS AND HOUSEHOLD AND PERSONAL EFFECTS OF ANY PERSON ON ACTIVE DUTY (WITHOUT REGARD TO PAY GRADE) WHO IS OFFICIALLY REPORTED AS INJURED. WILL BE APPROVED BY THE CHIEF OF TRANSPORTATION WHEN IT APPEARS THAT THE APPLICANT IS THE PROPER CUSTODIAN OF SUCH EFFECTS AND WHEN. IF SHIPMENT IS DESIRED TO A LOCATION OTHER THAN THE OFFICIAL RESIDENCE OF RECORD. PARAGRAPH 7 OF SAID WAR DEPARTMENT CIRCULAR NO. 140 PROVIDES THAT PERSONS WHO MAKE SHIPMENT AT PERSONAL EXPENSE ARE ENTITLED TO REIMBURSEMENT TO THE EXTENT THAT TRANSPORTATION WOULD HAVE BEEN AUTHORIZED AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE.

B-70497, NOVEMBER 12, 1947, 27 COMP. GEN. 274

TRANSPORTATION - HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS - INTRA-CITY MOVEMENTS UNDER MISSING PERSONS ACT SECTION 12 OF THE MISSING PERSONS ACT, AUTHORIZING THE SHIPMENT OF HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS OF ANY PERSON OFFICIALLY REPORTED AS INJURED, DEAD, MISSING, ETC., AS THE RESULT OF MILITARY OR NAVAL OPERATIONS,"TO THE OFFICIAL RESIDENCE OF RECORD" OF SUCH PERSON OR, UPON APPLICATION,"TO SUCH OTHER LOCATIONS" AS MAY BE ADMINISTRATIVELY DETERMINED, MAY NOT BE REGARDED AS AUTHORIZING THE MOVEMENT OF HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE IN OR WITHIN THE IMMEDIATE VICINITY OF THE CITY DESIGNATED AS THE HOME OF RECORD, OR FROM ONE RESIDENCE TO ANOTHER IN THE CITY SELECTED BY DEPENDENTS IN PREFERENCE TO THE HOME OF RECORD.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL WARREN TO COL. CARL WITCHER, U.S. ARMY, NOVEMBER 12, 1947:

THERE HAS BEEN RECEIVED BY INDORSEMENT OF OCTOBER 17, 1947, YOUR REQUEST OF OCTOBER 8, 1947, FOR DECISION AS TO WHETHER PAYMENT IS AUTHORIZED ON A VOUCHER SUBMITTED THEREWITH IN FAVOR OF MRS. CAROLYN LONG WILLIAMS, WIDOW OF LIEUTENANT COLONEL LYMAN O. WILLIAMS, DECEASED, FOR REIMBURSEMENT OF THE COST OF PACKING AND MOVING APPROXIMATELY 7,500 POUNDS OF HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS FROM ONE RESIDENCE TO ANOTHER IN AUGUSTA, GEORGIA, ON OR ABOUT MARCH 5, 1946.

THE RECORD SHOWS THAT UNDER DATE OF MAY 23, 1945, LIEUTENANT COLONEL WILLIAMS, INFANTRY, U.S.A., WAS REPORTED KILLED IN ACTION IN THE PACIFIC OCEAN AREA ON APRIL 2, 1945. IT IS SHOWN THAT THE OFFICER'S HOME OF RECORD UPON ENTERING THE SERVICE WAS EASLEY, SOUTH CAROLINA, AND THAT HIS DEPENDENTS OCCUPIED PREMISES AT 2720 HENRY STREET, AUGUSTA, GEORGIA, FROM SEPTEMBER, 1942, UNTIL ON OR ABOUT MARCH 5, 1946, WHEN THE CLAIMANT HAD THE CAREY F. WEATHERS TRANSFER AND STORAGE COMPANY, AUGUSTA, GEORGIA, PACK AND HAUL SAID HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS FROM HER RESIDENCE AT 2720 HENRY STREET, TO 802 HIGHLAND AVENUE IN THAT CITY, AT A PERSONAL EXPENSE OF $75.75.

SECTION 12 OF THE ACT OF MARCH 7, 1942, 56 STAT. 143, 146. PROVIDES:

THE DEPENDENTS AND HOUSEHOLD AND PERSONAL EFFECTS OF ANY PERSON ON ACTIVE DUTY (WITHOUT REGARD TO PAY GRADE) WHO IS OFFICIALLY REPORTED AS INJURED, DEAD, MISSING AS THE RESULT OF MILITARY OR NAVAL OPERATIONS, INTERNED IN A NEUTRAL COUNTRY, OR CAPTURED BY THE ENEMY, MAY BE MOVED (INCLUDING PACKING AND UNPACKING OF HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS) TO THE OFFICIAL RESIDENCE OF RECORD FOR ANY SUCH PERSON, OR, UPON APPLICATION BY SUCH DEPENDENTS, TO SUCH OTHER LOCATIONS AS MAY BE DETERMINED BY THE HEAD OF THE DEPARTMENT CONCERNED OR BY SUCH PERSON AS HE MAY DESIGNATE, BY THE USE OF EITHER COMMERCIAL OR GOVERNMENT TRANSPORTATION: PROVIDED, THAT THE COST OF SUCH TRANSPORTATION, INCLUDING PACKING AND UNPACKING, SHALL BE CHARGED AGAINST APPROPRIATIONS CURRENTLY AVAILABLE.

IN REFERENCE TO THE ABOVE-QUOTED STATUTE, PARAGRAPH 5B, SECTION XIV, WAR DEPARTMENT CIRCULAR NO. 140, DATED MAY 12, 1945, PROVIDES:

APPLICATIONS FOR TRANSPORTATION OF HOUSEHOLD AND PERSONAL EFFECTS, IF OTHERWISE AUTHORIZED, WILL BE APPROVED BY THE CHIEF OF TRANSPORTATION WHEN IT APPEARS THAT THE APPLICANT IS THE PROPER CUSTODIAN OF SUCH EFFECTS AND WHEN, IF SHIPMENT IS DESIRED TO A LOCATION OTHER THAN THE OFFICIAL RESIDENCE OF RECORD, REASONABLE JUSTIFICATION EXISTS FOR SHIPMENT TO SUCH LOCATION.

FURTHER, PARAGRAPH 7 OF SAID WAR DEPARTMENT CIRCULAR NO. 140 PROVIDES THAT PERSONS WHO MAKE SHIPMENT AT PERSONAL EXPENSE ARE ENTITLED TO REIMBURSEMENT TO THE EXTENT THAT TRANSPORTATION WOULD HAVE BEEN AUTHORIZED AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE.

UNDER THE ABOVE-QUOTED PROVISIONS OF THE STATUTE AND REGULATIONS, THE HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS OF PERSONS COVERED THEREBY MAY BE MOVED (INCLUDING PACKING AND UNPACKING), BY THE USE OF EITHER COMMERCIAL OR GOVERNMENT TRANSPORTATION, TO THE OFFICIAL RESIDENCE OF RECORD OF SUCH MILITARY PERSONNEL OR, UPON APPLICATION, TO SUCH OTHER LOCATIONS SELECTED BY THE DEPENDENTS OF SAID MILITARY PERSONNEL AS MAY BE APPROVED BY THE CHIEF OF TRANSPORTATION. THUS, WHILE SAIS STATUTE MAKES SPECIFIC PROVISION FOR THE MOVEMENT OF HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS "TO THE OFFICIAL RESIDENCE OF RECORD," OR ,TO SUCH OTHER LOCATIONS" AS DETERMINED BY THE SECRETARY OF WAR, OR BY SUCH PERSON AS HE MAY DESIGNATE, THERE IS NO APPARENT STATUTORY INTENT TO AUTHORIZE THE MOVEMENT OF HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE IN OR WITHIN THE IMMEDIATE VICINITY OF THE CITY DESIGNATED AS THE HOME OF RECORD. HENCE, IT WOULD SEEM TO FOLLOW THAT THERE IS NO AUTHORITY FOR SUCH MOVEMENT OF HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS FROM ONE PLACE TO ANOTHER WITHIN THE CITY SELECTED BY DEPENDENTS IN PREFERENCE TO THE OFFICIAL HOME OF RECORD. THE DECISIONS OF THE ACCOUNTING OFFICERS CONSISTENTLY HAVE CONSTRUED THE EARLIER STATUTES AUTHORIZING THE TRANSPORTATION OF HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS OF MILITARY AND NAVAL PERSONNEL AS PROVIDING NO AUTHORITY FOR THE HAULING OF HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS FROM ONE LOCATION TO ANOTHER AT THE SAME STATION OR FROM ONE RESIDENCE TO ANOTHER IN THE SAME CITY OR ADJACENT AREA. 2 COMP. GEN. 344; 13 ID. 210; A-53081, DATED FEBRUARY 15, 1934; B-35061, JULY 28, 1943; B-43887, SEPTEMBER 21, 1944; AND B 53177, NOVEMBER 19, 1945. THE RULE SO ESTABLISHED WOULD APPEAR TO BE EQUALLY APPLICABLE TO MOVEMENTS OF HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF SAID ACT OF MARCH 7, 1942.

ACCORDINGLY, IT MUST BE CONCLUDED THAT PAYMENT ON THE VOUCHER, WHICH IS RETAINED IN THE FILES OF THIS OFFICE, IS NOT AUTHORIZED.