B-164467, AUG 9, 1971

B-164467: Aug 9, 1971

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WILL NOT QUESTION THE DETERMINATION BY THE DEPUTY DIRECTOR. THAT THE EXPENSE OF ENTERING THE FILM IN THE FESTIVAL WAS A NECESSARY ONE. ENCLOSED WITH YOUR LETTER IS A MEMORANDUM DATED MARCH 19. " IN THE CONTEST ARE SET OUT. THE DEPUTY DIRECTOR STATES THAT THE FILM WAS PRODUCED AS A PART OF THE BUREAU'S PROGRAM TO TEACH HEALTH AND SAFETY TO PERSONS IN THE MINING INDUSTRY. HE FURTHER STATES THAT THE BUREAU'S EDUCATIONAL PROGRAM WAS UNDERTAKEN PURSUANT TO SECTION 502 OF THE FEDERAL COAL MINE HEALTH AND SAFETY ACT OF 1969. THE BUREAU FOUND IT "NECESSARY TO ADOPT EVERY MEASURE WHICH WILL SERVE TO BRING MORE HEALTH AND SAFETY INTO MINING.". THE DEPUTY DIRECTOR STATES THAT THE FILM WAS ENTERED IN THE CONTEST ON THE BASIS THAT IF IT WERE TO RECEIVE A "GOLD CAMERA" AWARD.

B-164467, AUG 9, 1971

FILM FESTIVAL ENTRY FEES ADVANCE DECISION TO THE BUREAU OF MINES AUTHORIZING PAYMENT OF A VOUCHER SUBMITTED BY SAMUEL R. SAPPO FOR REFUND OF FEES ADVANCED BY HIM TO ENTER A FILM PRODUCED BY THE BUREAU IN THE U. S. INDUSTRIAL FILM FESTIVAL. IN LIGHT OF THE DIRECT PROGRAM BENEFIT ANTICIPATED, THE COMP. GEN. WILL NOT QUESTION THE DETERMINATION BY THE DEPUTY DIRECTOR, HEALTH AND SAFETY, THAT THE EXPENSE OF ENTERING THE FILM IN THE FESTIVAL WAS A NECESSARY ONE.

TO MR. ROYAL D. HUGHEY:

IN A LETTER DATED MAY 7, 1971, WITH ENCLOSURES, YOU REQUEST AN ADVANCE DECISION AS TO WHETHER A VOUCHER IN THE AMOUNT OF $50 TO REIMBURSE MR. SAMUEL R. SAPPO, CHIEF, MOTION PICTURE BRANCH, BUREAU OF MINES, FOR FEES ADVANCED BY HIM TO ENTER A FILM PRODUCED BY THE BUREAU OF MINES IN THE U.S. INDUSTRIAL FILM FESTIVAL, MAY BE CERTIFIED FOR PAYMENT.

ENCLOSED WITH YOUR LETTER IS A MEMORANDUM DATED MARCH 19, 1971, SIGNED BY THE DEPUTY DIRECTOR, HEALTH AND SAFETY, BUREAU OF MINES, IN WHICH THE ADMINISTRATIVE JUSTIFICATIONS FOR ENTERING THE FILM IN QUESTION, ENTITLED "PROTECTION AGAINST RADIOACTIVITY IN URANIUM MINES," IN THE CONTEST ARE SET OUT. THE DEPUTY DIRECTOR STATES THAT THE FILM WAS PRODUCED AS A PART OF THE BUREAU'S PROGRAM TO TEACH HEALTH AND SAFETY TO PERSONS IN THE MINING INDUSTRY. HE FURTHER STATES THAT THE BUREAU'S EDUCATIONAL PROGRAM WAS UNDERTAKEN PURSUANT TO SECTION 502 OF THE FEDERAL COAL MINE HEALTH AND SAFETY ACT OF 1969, PUB. L. 91-173, 30 U.S.C. 952. SECTION 502 PROVIDES THAT THE SECRETARY OF THE INTERIOR SHALL EXPAND EXISTING PROGRAMS FOR THE EDUCATION AND TRAINING OF MINE OPERATORS AND THEIR AGENTS AND MINERS IN COAL MINE SAFETY AND THAT HE SHALL, TO THE EXTENT POSSIBLE, PROVIDE TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE TO MINE OPERATORS IN CARRYING OUT THE PROVISIONS OF PUBLIC LAW 91-173 AND IN FURTHER IMPROVING HEALTH AND SAFETY CONDITIONS AND PRACTICES IN COAL MINES. THE DEPUTY DIRECTOR ALSO STATES THAT DUE "TO EXTREMELY SHORT SCHEDULES FOR IMPLEMENTING" THE PROVISIONS OF PUBLIC LAW 91-173, THE BUREAU FOUND IT "NECESSARY TO ADOPT EVERY MEASURE WHICH WILL SERVE TO BRING MORE HEALTH AND SAFETY INTO MINING."

THE DEPUTY DIRECTOR STATES THAT THE FILM WAS ENTERED IN THE CONTEST ON THE BASIS THAT IF IT WERE TO RECEIVE A "GOLD CAMERA" AWARD, THE FILM "WOULD RECEIVE NATIONAL PUBLICITY RESULTING IN GREATER KNOWLEDGE OF AND INTEREST IN THE FILM AND THUS MORE PEOPLE WOULD SEE IT AND RECEIVE THE MESSAGE IT WAS PRODUCED TO CONVEY." WE PRESUME THAT THE FILM WAS ENTERED IN THE CONTEST IN THE BUREAU'S NAME AND THAT ANY AWARDS WON BY BUREAU FILMS WILL BE PRESENTED TO THE BUREAU AND NOT TO ANY INDIVIDUAL. SINCE THE FILM DID WIN A "GOLD CAMERA" AWARD IN ITS CATEGORY, MR. WHEELER FEELS "IT WAS INSTRUMENTAL IN INCREASING THE NUMBER OF PEOPLE THAT HAVE AND WILL VIEW THE FILM AND LEARN SOMETHING FROM IT." " *** (IT) RESULTED IN DIRECT BENEFIT TO THE HEALTH AND SAFETY PROGRAM OF THE BUREAU OF MINES."

OUR DECISION OF JUNE 14, 1968, B-164467, CONCERNED THE PROPRIETY OF PAYMENT OF A FEE FOR ENTERING A BUREAU OF MINES PUBLICATION IN THE ANNUAL GOVERNMENT PUBLICATIONS CONTEST OF THE FEDERAL EDITORS ASSOCIATION. AS WE STATED THERE, WHETHER THE BUREAU'S APPROPRIATIONS ARE AVAILABLE FOR PAYMENT OF EXPENSES INCURRED DEPENDS UPON THE REASONABLENESS OF CONSIDERING SUCH EXPENSES NECESSARY TO CARRY OUT SPECIFIC AND GENERAL BUREAU FUNCTIONS. BASED ON THE RECORD BEFORE US IN THAT CASE, WE HELD THAT THE EXPENSE OF ENTERING A BUREAU PUBLICATION IN THE CONTEST COULD NOT BE CONSIDERED A "NECESSARY EXPENSE" UNDER ANY OF THE APPROPRIATIONS PROVIDED TO THE BUREAU.

IN THE INSTANT CASE YOUR AGENCY HAS DETERMINED THAT THE EXIGENCIES INVOLVED IN CARRYING OUT ITS STATUTORY FUNCTIONS AND RESPONSIBILITIES REQUIRED IT TO TAKE "EVERY MEASURE WHICH WILL SERVE TO BRING MORE HEALTH AND SAFETY INTO MINING," THAT THERE WAS "A CRITICAL URGENCY TO DISSEMINATE THE INFORMATION" IN THE FILM, AND THAT THE PUBLICITY GIVEN TO THE FILM FOR WINNING A "GOLD CAMERA" AWARD WOULD CAUSE MORE PEOPLE TO VIEW THE FILM AS WELL AS ATTRACT MINERS TO ATTEND TRAINING SESSIONS WHERE THE FILM IS SHOWN. THEREFORE, IN LIGHT OF THE DIRECT PROGRAM BENEFIT ANTICIPATED TO FLOW FROM THE ENTRY, WE WILL NOT QUESTION THE DETERMINATION BY THE DEPUTY DIRECTOR THAT THE EXPENSE OF ENTERING THE SUBJECT BUREAU OF MINES' FILM IN THE U.S. INDUSTRIAL FILM FESTIVAL WAS A NECESSARY ONE.

ACCORDINGLY, THE VOUCHER SUBMITTED WITH YOUR LETTER IS RETURNED HEREWITH AND MAY BE CERTIFIED FOR PAYMENT IF OTHERWISE CORRECT.

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