B-160452, JAN. 26, 1967

B-160452: Jan 26, 1967

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THE CLAIM WAS DISALLOWED IN PART BY OUR CLAIMS DIVISION SETTLEMENT OF OCTOBER 13. FOR WHICH YOU WERE PAID MILEAGE LIMITED TO THE COST OF FIRST CLASS AIR FARE FROM WASHINGTON TO AUGUSTA. YOU WERE ALLOWED PER DIEM AT THE RATE OF $13 PER DAY. YOU SAY THAT YOU SHOULD HAVE RECEIVED PER DIEM AT THE RATE OF $16 PER DAY RATHER THAN $13 SINCE THE TEAM. OF WHICH YOU WERE A PART. WAS LODGED IN AUGUSTA. IT IS ALSO YOUR CONTENTION THAT YOU SHOULD RECEIVE AN ADDITIONAL $5.64 FOR TRANSPORTATION COSTS SINCE FIRST CLASS AIR FARE FROM WASHINGTON. RETURN IS $83.34. RATHER THAN $77.70 WHICH YOU WERE PAID. CONCERNING YOUR OPINION THAT YOU SHOULD HAVE RECEIVED PER DIEM AT THE RATE OF $16 PER DAY RATHER THAN $13.

B-160452, JAN. 26, 1967

TO MR. PHILIP H. TRASK:

THIS REFERS TO OUR LETTER OF NOVEMBER 9, 1966, TO THE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY REQUESTING FURTHER CONSIDERATION OF YOUR CLAIM FOR ADDITIONAL PER DIEM AND EXPENSES INCIDENT TO SERVICES WITH THE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY. THE CLAIM WAS DISALLOWED IN PART BY OUR CLAIMS DIVISION SETTLEMENT OF OCTOBER 13, 1966.

THE RECORDS SHOW THAT ON NOVEMBER 15, 1964, YOU TRAVELED BY PRIVATE AUTOMOBILE FROM WASHINGTON, D.C., TO THOMSON, GEORGIA, FOR WHICH YOU WERE PAID MILEAGE LIMITED TO THE COST OF FIRST CLASS AIR FARE FROM WASHINGTON TO AUGUSTA, GEORGIA. YOU REMAINED ON TEMPORARY DUTY IN GEORGIA UNTIL NOVEMBER 19, 1964. YOU WERE ALLOWED PER DIEM AT THE RATE OF $13 PER DAY.

YOU SAY THAT YOU SHOULD HAVE RECEIVED PER DIEM AT THE RATE OF $16 PER DAY RATHER THAN $13 SINCE THE TEAM, OF WHICH YOU WERE A PART, WAS LODGED IN AUGUSTA, GEORGIA, WHERE THE RATE IF $16 PER DAY. YOU FURTHER SAY THAT BECAUSE YOUR TOUR EXTENDED ONE-HALF DAY LONGER THAN THE REST OF THE TEAM'S TOUR YOU SHOULD BE REIMBURSED $19.50 FOR ONE DAY'S USE OF A RENTAL CAR PLUS TAXI FARE OF $17, COVERING THE USE OF TAXICABS IN WASHINGTON, D.C. IT IS ALSO YOUR CONTENTION THAT YOU SHOULD RECEIVE AN ADDITIONAL $5.64 FOR TRANSPORTATION COSTS SINCE FIRST CLASS AIR FARE FROM WASHINGTON, D.C., TO AUGUSTA, GEORGIA, AND RETURN IS $83.34, RATHER THAN $77.70 WHICH YOU WERE PAID.

CONCERNING YOUR OPINION THAT YOU SHOULD HAVE RECEIVED PER DIEM AT THE RATE OF $16 PER DAY RATHER THAN $13, YOUR TRAVEL AUTHORIZATION INDICATES THAT YOU WERE ASSIGNED TO TEMPORARY DUTY AT THOMSON, GEORGIA. THE CIVILIAN PERSONNEL REGULATIONS OF THE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY, CPR T3, APPENDIX E, PART III, IN EFFECT AT THE TIME OF YOUR CLAIM, SPECIFY A LOCAL PER DIEM RATE OF $13 FOR THOMSON, GEORGIA. SINCE YOU APPARENTLY LODGED IN THOMSON, GEORGIA, THAT IS THE RATE OF PER DIEM APPLICABLE IN YOUR CASE. WE ARE NOT AWARE OF ANY AUTHORITY TO ALLOW YOU THE PER DIEM RATE APPLICABLE TO AUGUSTA ON THE BASIS THAT THAT LOCATION IS WHERE YOU WOULD HAVE STAYED HAD YOU TRAVELED WITH OTHER EMPLOYEES FROM YOUR OFFICE INSTEAD OF IN YOUR OWN AUTOMOBILE. WE HAVE LONG HELD THAT THE RATE OF PER DIEM IS A DISCRETIONARY MATTER VESTED IN THE ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICE CONCERNED, LIMITED ONLY BY THE MAXIMUM RATE PRESCRIBED IN SECTION 6 OF THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS. B-156699, MAY 24, 1965; B- 139176, MAY 28, 1959; B 153405, JUNE 17, 1964.

IN REGARD TO YOUR CLAIM FOR $17 TAXI FARES, YOU WERE PROPERLY ALLOWED TAXI FARES FROM YOUR HOME IN WASHINGTON TO THE AIRPORT AND RETURN, AND FROM THE AUGUSTA AIRPORT TO THOMSON, GEORGIA, AND RETURN. IN THE ABSENCE OF ADMINISTRATIVE APPROVAL SUCH TAXI FARES (PLUS TIPS) WERE LIMITED TO $6.60 EACH, AS PROVIDED IN 3.18 OF THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS. SINCE THE RECORD DOES NOT INDICATE SUCH APPROVAL YOU ARE NOT ENTITLED TO ANY AMOUNT IN EXCESS OF THE LIMITATION.

AS TO YOUR CLAIM FOR REIMBURSEMENT FOR THE USE OF A RENTAL CAR, WE NOTE THAT YOUR APPARENTLY USED YOUR OWN AUTOMOBILE FOR TRAVEL IN AND AROUND THOMSON TO THE EXTENT OF 99 MILES. UNDER SUCH CIRCUMSTANCES YOU ARE NOT ENTITLED TO ANY PAYMENT ON THE BASIS OF THE COST OF A RENTAL CAR FOR THIS PERIOD. IN THAT CONNECTION SECTION 3.1D OF THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS AUTHORIZES REIMBURSEMENT FOR LOCAL TRANSPORTATION BY BUS OR STREETCAR BETWEEN PLACES OF BUSINESS AND BETWEEN PLACE OF LODGING AND PLACE OF BUSINESS AT A TEMPORARY DUTY STATION. HOWEVER, WE ASSUME THERE WAS NO SUCH LOCAL TRANSPORTATION IN THOMSON, DUE TO THE SIZE OF THAT CITY (4,500). THEREFORE, THE ALLOWANCE OF ACTUAL MILEAGE FOR THE USE OF YOUR PRIVATELY OWNED AUTOMOBILE APPEARS PROPER. WE ARE INSTRUCTING OUR CLAIMS DIVISION TO ALLOW YOU AN ADDITIONAL AMOUNT OF $9.90, THAT IS, 99 MILES AT THE RATE OF 10 CENTS PER MILE. SEE B-132872, OCTOBER 3, 1957; B- 147285, OCTOBER 24, 1961.

REGARDING YOUR CLAIM FOR AN ADDITIONAL AMOUNT DUE BASED ON THE COST OF AIR TRAVEL BETWEEN WASHINGTON, D.C., AND AUGUSTA, YOU ARE ADVISED THAT COPIES OF OFFICIAL TARIFFS ON FILE IN THIS OFFICE INDICATE THAT THE PROPER AIR LINE CHARGE AT TIME OF TRAVEL WAS $77.70, THE AMOUNT ALLOWED. ASSUME THAT AN IDENTICAL SUM WAS PAID TO THE CARRIER FOR THE TRANSPORTATION OF EACH OF THE OTHER EMPLOYEES TO WHOM YOU REFER.

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