B-119784 May 18, 1954

B-119784: May 18, 1954

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Arnebeck: Reference is made to your letter of April 21. Which is red. " was designed primarily for use in international mall. As a part of the promotional campaign a ceremony was televised on April 8 which was attended by the President and Vice President of the United States. Representatives of the member nations of the Universal Postal Union and the Postal Unions of the Americas and Spain were invited to attend the ceremonies in connection with which a promotional luncheon was given at the Shoresham Hotel. It is stated in your letter that because of this broad and favorable publicity campaign the Department sold in excess of $70. That it is estimated that the total of such sales will reach $500.

B-119784 May 18, 1954

Clifford O. Arnebeck, Authorized Certifying Officer Bureau of Finance Post Office Department

Dear Mr. Arnebeck:

Reference is made to your letter of April 21, 1954, submitting four vouchers totalling $933.69, covering the expenses of a promotional campaign of the Philatelic Agency in the Bureau of Finance, Post Office Department, in advertising the sale of the new eight-cent Statute of Liberty stamp on April 8, 1954, and requesting a decision as to whether you properly may certify the vouchers for payment from the appropriation "1840210 General Administration, Post Office Department, 1954."

This stamp, which is red, white and blue, including a picture of the Statute of Liberty and the inscription "In God We Trust," was designed primarily for use in international mall. As a part of the promotional campaign a ceremony was televised on April 8 which was attended by the President and Vice President of the United States, the Secretary of State and other cignitaries, including leaders of the three principal religious faiths. Also, representatives of the member nations of the Universal Postal Union and the Postal Unions of the Americas and Spain were invited to attend the ceremonies in connection with which a promotional luncheon was given at the Shoresham Hotel. It is stated in your letter that because of this broad and favorable publicity campaign the Department sold in excess of $70,000 worth of these stamps to philatelists on the first day, and that it is estimated that the total of such sales will reach $500,000 with probably less than 50 percent of these stamps ever being utilized in postage. This is expected to be the largest single philatelic sales of an ordinary stamp in the history of the postal service.

The expenses proposed to be paid on the four vouchers, submitted with your letter, cover the cost of incidental hotel accommodations provided for the three religious leaders ($83.35), flowers for the luncheon ($241.74), and the luncheon at the Shoreham Hotel ($608.60). The other expenses, including that of the telecast, were donated by the private business firms providing such services.

The appropriation "1840210 General Administration, Post Office Department, Appropriation Act, 1954, 67 Stat. 70, is available "For expenses necessary for general administration of the postal service * * *." The said appropriation does not provide in specific terms for promotional expenses of the Philatelic Agency, but amounts have been included for the expenses of that Agency over a long period of years.

Under the general rule of appropriation construction, an express provision is not necessary for each and every item of expenditure, but an appropriation made in general terms for a particular purpose is available for expenses which may be said to be reasonably necessary to the proper accomplishment of the object or purpose for which made, except as to expenditures in contravention of some statutory provision or for some purpose for which other appropriations are more specifically available. See 29 Comp. Gen. 419, 421.

It is understood that in the instant case ceremonies of the magnitude involved were justified because of the nature of the stamp being issued.

Since it has been administratively determined that the expenses here involved were necessary to the promotional activities of the Philatelic Agency, the appropriation "General Administration, Post Office Department, 1954" may be regarded as legally available therefore and the four vouchers, which are returned herewith, properly may be certified for payment.

However, it is believed that if any further promotional expenses in substantial amounts such as here involved should be contemplated, specific statutory authority should be obtained.

Sincerely,

FRANK H. WEITZEL Acting Comptroller General of the United States

Enclosures

Nov 16, 2018

Nov 15, 2018

Nov 14, 2018

Nov 9, 2018

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