B-72864, FEBRUARY 2, 1948, 27 COMP. GEN. 419

B-72864: Feb 2, 1948

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1948: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF JANUARY 15. THE COURSE OF STUDY IS NOW COMPLETED AND MAJOR JIMENEZ DESIRES TO RETURN TO SANTIAGO VIA BOAT FOR THE FOLLOWING REASONS: 1. HIS GOVERNMENT WILL OFFER NO PROTECTION THROUGH INSURANCE WHILE IN FLIGHT FROM THE UNITED STATES TO CHILE. 2. HE WISHES TO ACCOMPANY HIS WIFE WHO IS NOW IN THE UNITED STATES BY BOAT BACK TO CHILE. 3. HE HAS PURCHASED NUMEROUS ARTICLES IN THE UNITED STATES WHICH WILL FAR EXCEED THE ALLOWABLE 50 LBS. IT IS REQUESTED THAT DECISION BE RENDERED AS SOON AS POSSIBLE AS TO WHETHER THE TRAINEES UNDER THIS PROGRAM ARE TO BE HELD STRICTLY TO THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS AND THE ABOVE CITED COMPTROLLER GENERAL DECISION OR WHETHER UNDER THE APPROPRIATION ACT ( PUBLIC LAW NO. 490.

B-72864, FEBRUARY 2, 1948, 27 COMP. GEN. 419

TRAVELING EXPENSES - INTER-AMERICAN CULTURAL PROGRAM GRANTEES - APPLICABILITY OF ROUND-TRIP FARE RESTRICTIONS UNDER THE TRAVEL REGULATIONS PROMULGATED PURSUANT TO THE AUTHORITY IN THE DEPARTMENT OF STATE APPROPRIATION ACT, 1948, PROVIDING FOR THE PAYMENT OF TRAVELING EXPENSES AND PER DIEM IN LIEU OF SUBSISTENCE TO CITIZENS OF FOREIGN COUNTRIES AWARDED INTER-AMERICAN CULTURAL PROGRAM TRAINING GRANTS, WITHOUT REGARD TO THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS--- UNLESS SPECIFICALLY MADE APPLICABLE TO THE TRAVEL--- A RECIPIENT OF SUCH AN AWARD WHO TRAVELED TO THE UNITED STATES ON ROUND TRIP AIRPLANE TICKET MAY, IN THE DISCRETION OF THE SECRETARY OF STATE, BE AUTHORIZED TO RETURN HOME BY COMMERCIAL WATER TRANSPORTATION, EVEN THOUGH THE COST OF SUCH RETURN TRAVEL BE IN EXCESS OF THAT BY AIR. 26 COMP. GEN. 787, DISTINGUISHED.

ACTING COMPTROLLER GENERAL YATES TO THE SECRETARY OF COMMERCE, FEBRUARY 2, 1948:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF JANUARY 15, 1948, AS FOLLOWS:

ON MARCH 24, 1947, MAJOR ROBERTO JIMENEZ R. RECEIVED AN AWARD UNDER THE STATE DEPARTMENT'S CULTURAL-1COOPERATION PROGRAM OF A TRAINING GRANT OF 8 MONTHS' DURATION IN GEODETIC SURVEYING IN THE UNITED STATES COAST AND GEODETIC SURVEY, DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE, AT WASHINGTON, D.C. MAJOR JIMENEZ COMMENCED HIS TRAVEL APRIL 14, 1947, FROM HIS HOME AT SANTIAGO, CHILE, TO MIAMI, FLORIDA, ON A ROUND TRIP AIRPLANE TICKET PURCHASED BY THE STATE DEPARTMENT ON GOVERNMENT TRANSPORTATION REQUEST NO. S-12324 IN THE AMOUNT OF $790.20, USING ONE WAY FIRST-CLASS RAILROAD AND PULLMAN UPPER BERTH FROM MIAMI, FLORIDA TO WASHINGTON, D.C., IN THE RESPECTIVE AMOUNTS OF $38.17 AND $7.30.

THE COURSE OF STUDY IS NOW COMPLETED AND MAJOR JIMENEZ DESIRES TO RETURN TO SANTIAGO VIA BOAT FOR THE FOLLOWING REASONS:

1. HIS GOVERNMENT WILL OFFER NO PROTECTION THROUGH INSURANCE WHILE IN FLIGHT FROM THE UNITED STATES TO CHILE.

2. HE WISHES TO ACCOMPANY HIS WIFE WHO IS NOW IN THE UNITED STATES BY BOAT BACK TO CHILE.

3. HE HAS PURCHASED NUMEROUS ARTICLES IN THE UNITED STATES WHICH WILL FAR EXCEED THE ALLOWABLE 50 LBS. EXCESS BAGGAGE BY AIR.

AS THE PER DIEM AND TRANSPORTATION COSTS BY AIR FROM SANTIAGO, CHILE TO MIAMI, FLA. AND RAILROAD FROM MIAMI, FLORIDA TO WASHINGTON, D.C., AND RETURN BY RAILROAD FROM WASHINGTON, D.C., TO NEW YORK, N.Y., AND BY BOAT FROM NEW YORK, N.Y. TO CHILE WOULD BE CONSIDERABLY IN EXCESS OF THE ROUND TRIP PER DIEM AND AIR TRANSPORTATION COSTS, AND IN VIEW OF COMPTROLLER GENERAL DECISION B-64534, DATED APRIL 16, 1947, IT IS REQUESTED THAT DECISION BE RENDERED AS SOON AS POSSIBLE AS TO WHETHER THE TRAINEES UNDER THIS PROGRAM ARE TO BE HELD STRICTLY TO THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS AND THE ABOVE CITED COMPTROLLER GENERAL DECISION OR WHETHER UNDER THE APPROPRIATION ACT ( PUBLIC LAW NO. 490, 79TH CONGRESS) AND PARAGRAPH 28.11 (E) OF THE STATE DEPARTMENT REGULATIONS ( FEDERAL REGISTER, AUGUST 23, 1944) THE SECRETARY OF STATE MAY AUTHORIZE OR APPROVE IN THE FORM OF A LETTER, TRAVEL BY ONE MEANS TO THIS COUNTRY AND ANOTHER MODE ON THE RETURN TRIP WHEN SO DESIRED BY ANY TRAINEE ASSIGNED TO THIS DEPARTMENT.

YOUR ATTENTION IS CALLED IN THIS CONNECTION TO THE PRIMARY PURPOSE OF THE CULTURAL PROGRAM; NAMELY, TO CREATE GOOD-WILL WITH THE VARIOUS SOUTH AMERICAN COUNTRIES. AS ONE OF THE DESIRED RESULTS FROM THIS PROGRAM IS THE PURCHASE OF CONSIDERABLE MERCHANDISE BY THESE TRAINEES WHILE IN THIS COUNTRY FOR THEIR PERSONAL USE OR USE OF THEIR GOVERNMENTS, IT IS BELIEVED THE PRIMARY PURPOSE OF THE PROGRAM WILL BE FRUSTRATED IN THE EVENT THE TRAINEES ARE FORCED TO RETURN BY A MEANS OF TRAVEL TO WHICH THEY ARE OPPOSED EITHER FOR PERSONAL OR PHYSICAL REASONS.

PRIOR TO THE ENACTMENT OF THE SECOND SUPPLEMENTAL NATIONAL DEFENSE APPROPRIATION ACT, 1942, 55 STAT. 745, 754, CERTAIN CITIZENS OF OTHER AMERICAN REPUBLICS TRAVELING TO AND FROM THE UNITED STATES UNDER THE INTER -AMERICAN CULTURAL PROGRAM WERE ALLOWED TRAVELING EXPENSES IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS. BY THAT ACT, UNDER THE HEADING," COOPERATION WITH THE AMERICAN REPUBLICS," THE FUNDS AUTHORIZED IN THE DEPARTMENT OF STATE APPROPRIATION ACT, 1942, WERE MADE AVAILABLE "FOR THE PAYMENT OF ACTUAL TRANSPORTATION EXPENSES IN THE UNITED STATES AND ABROAD AND NOT TO EXCEED $10 PER DIEM, IN LIEU OF SUBSISTENCE AND OTHER EXPENSES, TO CITIZENS OF THE OTHER AMERICAN REPUBLICS AS SPECIFIED" IN THE SAID 1942 APPROPRIATION ACT, UNDER REGULATIONS TO BE PROMULGATED BY THE SECRETARY OF STATE. THAT PROVISION WAS REVISED IN THE FOLLOWING FISCAL YEAR AS TO ALLOW SUCH EXPENSES TO "CITIZENS OF THE OTHER AMERICAN REPUBLICS WHILE TRAVELING IN THE WESTERN HEMISPHERE, WITHOUT REGARD TO THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS," AND IT HAS BEEN CONTINUED IN ITS REVISED FORM IN SUBSEQUENT APPROPRIATION ACTS OF THE DEPARTMENT OF STATE. IN ITS PRESENT FORM, THE PROVISO READS, IN PERTINENT PART, AS FOLLOWS (61 STAT. 279, 286):

* * * PROVIDED, THAT THE SECRETARY OF STATE IS AUTHORIZED UNDER SUCH REGULATIONS AS HE MAY ADOPT, TO PAY THE ACTUAL TRANSPORTATION EXPENSES AND NOT TO EXCEED $10 PER DIEM IN LIEU OF SUBSISTENCE AND OTHER EXPENSES, OF CITIZENS OF THE OTHER AMERICAN REPUBLICS WHILE TRAVELING IN THE WESTERN HEMISPHERE, WITHOUT REGARD TO THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS * * *. THERE IS LITTLE DOUBT BUT THAT THE DISCRETIONARY AUTHORITY VESTED IN THE SECRETARY OF STATE BY THE ABOVE-QUOTED STATUTORY PROVISION TO DISREGARD THE RESTRICTIVE PROVISIONS OF THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS WAS OCCASIONED BY THE REALIZATION THAT MANY OF ITS PROVISIONS COULD NOT BE APPLIED SUCCESSFULLY TO TRAVEL PERFORMED BY CITIZENS OF THE OTHER AMERICAN REPUBLICS UNDER THE INTER-1AMERICAN CULTURAL PROGRAM.

PURSUANT TO THE STATUTORY AUTHORITY VESTED IN HIM AS HEAD OF THE DEPARTMENT OF STATE, AND PARTICULARLY THE AUTHORITY CONFERRED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF STATE APPROPRIATION ACTS FOR THE FISCAL YEARS 1944 AND 1945, 57 STAT. 282, AND 58 STAT. 406, RESPECTIVELY (BOTH OF WHICH AUTHORIZE THE ISSUANCE OF REGULATIONS GOVERNING THE EXPENDITURE OF FUNDS MADE AVAILABLE BY EACH OF SUCH ACTS FOR THE PURPOSE OF PAYING COMPENSATION AS WELL AS TRAVELING AND OTHER EXPENSES OF CERTAIN PERSONS PARTICIPATING IN THE PROGRAM OF INTER-1AMERICAN CULTURAL RELATIONS), THE SECRETARY OF STATE PROMULGATED EFFECTIVE AUGUST 21, 1944, WHICH SUPERSEDED PRIOR INCONSISTENT REGULATIONS AND INSTRUCTIONS GOVERNING PAYMENTS TO AND ON BEHALF OF SUCH PARTICIPANTS. THOSE REGULATIONS, WHICH BY SECTION 28.2 (C) THEREOF ARE MADE APPLICABLE TO SUBSEQUENT APPROPRIATIONS TO THE DEPARTMENT OF STATE FOR THE PROGRAM, PROVIDED IN SECTIONS 28.3 (A) AND 28.4 (A) THAT CITIZENS OF FOREIGN COUNTRIES WHO HAVE BEEN AWARDED GRANTS AS LEADERS OR AS STUDENTS, DEFINED IN THE REGULATIONS, SHALL BE ENTITLED TO " FIRST-CLASS ACCOMMODATIONS ON STEAMSHIP, AIRPLANE, RAILWAY, OR OTHER MEANS OF CONVEYANCE.' LIKEWISE, SUBSECTIONS (B) AND (C) OF THE ABOVE-REFERRED-TO SECTIONS SPECIFY THE MAXIMUM PER DIEM ALLOWABLE AND THE REIMBURSABLE BAGGAGE WEIGHTS. IN SECTIONS 28.2 (D) AND 28.4 (D) OF THE SAME REGULATIONS, WHICH SECTIONS ARE ENTITLED " ALTERNATE PROVISION," TRAVEL EXPENSES AND PER DIEM TO SUCH LEADERS AND STUDENTS ARE AUTHORIZED "IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE PROVISIONS OF THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS, WHEN SPECIFICALLY AUTHORIZED, IN LIEU OF THE PROVISIONS OF PARAGRAPH (A), (B), AND (C) OF THIS SECTION.' THUS, IT WOULD APPEAR THAT, EXCEPT WHEN SPECIFICALLY AUTHORIZED, APPLICATION OF THE PROVISIONS OF THE GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS, AT LEAST SO FAR AS THOSE PROVISIONS ARE INCONSISTENT WITH THE REGULATIONS, SUPRA, IS NOT REQUIRED IN CASES INVOLVING TRAVEL OF STUDENTS AND LEADERS UNDER THE INTER-1AMERICAN CULTURAL PROGRAM. IT FOLLOWS THAT THE RULE LAID DOWN IN THE DECISION OF APRIL 16, 1947, B-64534, 26 COMP. GEN. 787, REFERRED TO IN YOUR LETTER, TO THE EFFECT THAT GOVERNMENT OFFICERS AND EMPLOYEES MAY BE ALLOWED ONLY THE COST OF A ROUND-TRIP TICKET VIA THE MODE OF TRANSPORTATION USED IN THE GOING TRIP, IS NOT NECESSARILY TO BE APPLIED TO CITIZENS OF OTHER AMERICAN REPUBLICS PARTICIPATING IN THE INTER 1AMERICAN CULTURAL PROGRAM, EXCEPT IN THOSE INSTANCES IN WHICH PAYMENT OF TRANSPORTATION EXPENSES IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS SPECIFICALLY IS AUTHORIZED.

HOWEVER, WHERE THE DEPARTMENT OF STATE PURCHASES A ROUND-TRIP TICKET BY A PARTICULAR MODE OF CONVEYANCE FOR A PARTICIPANT'S USE, AS IN THE CASE OF MAJOR ROBERTO JIMENEZ R., HERE PRESENTED, IT WOULD APPEAR PROPER TO ASSUME, IN THE ABSENCE OF EVIDENCE TO THE CONTRARY, THAT THE DEPARTMENT'S INTENTION AT THE TIME OF PURCHASE OF SUCH TICKET WAS TO LIMIT THE EXPENDITURE FOR THE TRANSPORTATION COVERED THEREBY TO THE COST OF THE TICKET SO PURCHASED. BUT IT IS REALIZED ALSO THAT IT WELL MAY BE THAT SUBSEQUENT TO THE DATE OF THE PURCHASE OF THE TICKET, THE SITUATION IS SO ALTERED AS TO MAKE IT DESIRABLE OR NECESSARY THAT THE RETURN PORTION OF THE TICKET BE REDEEMED AND A NEW TICKET PURCHASED FOR THE RETURN TRIP BY A DIFFERENT MODE OF CONVEYANCE NOTWITHSTANDING THAT THE COST THEREOF MIGHT EXCEED THE COST ORIGINALLY CONTEMPLATED BY THE PURCHASE OF THE ROUND-TRIP TICKET. IN SUCH CASES, AND HAVING IN MIND THE BROAD AUTHORITY CONFERRED UPON HIM BY THE LAW AND REGULATIONS, SUPRA, AND INCLUDING SECTION 28.11 (E) THEREOF, REFERRED TO IN YOUR LETTER, OR IN SOME OTHER MANNER DEEMED BY HIM TO BE MORE APPROPRIATE UNDER THE CIRCUMSTANCES OF ANY PARTICULAR CASE, AN AUTHORIZATION OR APPROVAL FOR RETURN TRAVEL OF TRAINEES UNDER THE CULTURAL PROGRAM, AND WHO ARE WITHIN THE SCOPE OF THE REGULATIONS HEREIN DISCUSSED, BY A MODE OF CONVEYANCE DIFFERENT FROM THAT WHICH WAS USED IN TRAVELING TO THE UNITED STATES.