B-164279, AUG. 27, 1968

B-164279: Aug 27, 1968

Additional Materials:

Contact:

Shirley Jones
(202) 512-8156
jonessa@gao.gov

 

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

THE PERTINENT FACTS OF YOUR CASE WERE SET FORTH IN OUR DECISION OF JUNE 24. WE NOTE THAT YOU HAVE SUBMITTED NO ADDITIONAL INFORMATION NOT PREVIOUSLY CONSIDERED BY THIS OFFICE. WAS FOR PURPOSES CONTEMPLATED BY SECTION 2.4 OF BUREAU OF THE BUDGET CIRCULAR NO. THE PURPOSES OF SUCH TRIP WERE TO (1) AVOID THE ADDITIONAL COSTS OF A PRIOR ROUND TRIP OF THE EMPLOYEE AND HIS ABSENCE FROM WORK FOR FIVE DAYS. YOU EMPHASIZE THE FACT THAT THE PERMANENT QUARTERS AT YOUR NEW DUTY STATION WERE NOT AVAILABLE FOR YOUR OCCUPANCY UNTIL OCTOBER 15. IS REPLETE WITH STATEMENTS EXPLAINING THE PURPOSE OF THE ABOVE QUOTED STATUTORY PROVISION. * * *" THE FOLLOWING PARAGRAPH IS QUOTED FROM THE STATEMENT OF JOHN W. HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES: "/3) WHEN EMPLOYEES ARE ASKED TO MOVE THEY OUGHT TO BE GIVEN A REASONABLE CHANCE TO FIND A PLACE TO LIVE.

B-164279, AUG. 27, 1968

TO MR. WAYNE W. A KEY:

YOUR LETTERS OF JULY 4, AND AUGUST 17, 1968, REQUEST RECONSIDERATION OF OUR DECISION OF JUNE 24, 1968, B-164279, WHICH SUSTAINED THE DISALLOWANCE OF YOUR CLAIM FOR REIMBURSEMENT FOR THE ROUND TRIP TRAVEL OF YOUR WIFE BETWEEN NEWARK, NEW JERSEY, AND SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA.

THE PERTINENT FACTS OF YOUR CASE WERE SET FORTH IN OUR DECISION OF JUNE 24, 1968, AND, THEREFORE, NEED NOT BE REPEATED HERE. ALSO, WE NOTE THAT YOU HAVE SUBMITTED NO ADDITIONAL INFORMATION NOT PREVIOUSLY CONSIDERED BY THIS OFFICE.

IN YOUR LETTER OF JULY 4, 1968, YOU REITERATE YOUR VIEW THAT YOUR WIFE'S TRAVEL FROM NEWARK (YOUR NEW OFFICIAL STATION) TO SAN FRANCISCO (YOUR OLD OFFICIAL STATION), AND RETURN, WAS FOR PURPOSES CONTEMPLATED BY SECTION 2.4 OF BUREAU OF THE BUDGET CIRCULAR NO. A-56. ACCORDING TO YOUR ORIGINAL TRAVEL VOUCHER, THE PURPOSES OF SUCH TRIP WERE TO (1) AVOID THE ADDITIONAL COSTS OF A PRIOR ROUND TRIP OF THE EMPLOYEE AND HIS ABSENCE FROM WORK FOR FIVE DAYS; (2) AVOID THE COST OF TEMPORARY STORAGE OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS; AND (3) ENABLE SPOUSE TO SELECT HOUSEHOLD ITEMS TO SHIP AND THUS MINIMIZE SHIPPING COSTS. ALSO, YOU EMPHASIZE THE FACT THAT THE PERMANENT QUARTERS AT YOUR NEW DUTY STATION WERE NOT AVAILABLE FOR YOUR OCCUPANCY UNTIL OCTOBER 15, 1967 -- TWO DAYS AFTER YOUR WIFE'S RETURN FROM SAN FRANCISCO.

SECTION 5724A (A) (2) OF TITLE 5, U.S.C. AUTHORIZES REIMBURSEMENT FOR:

"* * * EXPENSES OF TRANSPORTATION TO SEEK PERMANENT RESIDENCE QUARTERS AT A NEW OFFICIAL STATION * * *.'

THE LEGISLATIVE HISTORY OF PUBLIC LAW 89-516, APPROVED JULY 21, 1966, IS REPLETE WITH STATEMENTS EXPLAINING THE PURPOSE OF THE ABOVE QUOTED STATUTORY PROVISION. FOR EXAMPLE, THE FOLLOWING STATEMENT APPEARS ON PAGE 2 OF S.REPT. NO. 1357, 89TH CONG., 2ND SESS.:

"THE PRINCIPLE FEATURES OF THE BILL PROVIDE FOR---

"/2) ONE ROUND TRIP TO THE NEW LOCATION FOR THE EMPLOYEE AND HIS SPOUSE FOR THE PURPOSE OF OBTAINING A PLACE TO LIVE; * * *"

THE FOLLOWING PARAGRAPH IS QUOTED FROM THE STATEMENT OF JOHN W. MACY, JR., CHAIRMAN, CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION, BEFORE THE SUBCOMMITTEE OF THE COMMITTEE ON GOVERNMENT OPERATIONS, HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES:

"/3) WHEN EMPLOYEES ARE ASKED TO MOVE THEY OUGHT TO BE GIVEN A REASONABLE CHANCE TO FIND A PLACE TO LIVE. AT PRESENT THERE IS NO PROVISION FOR THIS UNDER THE ADMINISTRATIVE EXPENSES ACT. THE BILL WOULD PERMIT THE EMPLOYEE AND HIS SPOUSE TO TAKE ONE HOUSE-HUNTING TRIP, AGAIN AT RATES THE BUREAU OF THE BUDGET WILL ESTABLISH WITHIN THE LIMITS OF THE TRAVEL EXPENSE ACT.'

THE ABOVE-QUOTED STATEMENTS FORTIFY THE OPINION EXPRESSED IN OUR DECISION OF JUNE 24, 1968, THAT THE LAW DOES NOT CONTEMPLATE REIMBURSEMENT UNDER SECTION 2.4 OF CIRCULAR NO. A-56 FOR ROUND TRIP TRAVEL BETWEEN THE OLD AND NEW OFFICIAL STATIONS WHEN PERFORMED FOR A PURPOSE OTHER THAN SEEKING RESIDENCE QUARTERS.

THE DATE YOUR PERMANENT QUARTERS WERE AVAILABLE FOR YOUR OCCUPANCY IS OF NO CONSEQUENCE. SUCH QUARTERS HAD BEEN LOCATED AND A LEASE THEREFOR HAD BEEN EXECUTED PRIOR TO THE DATE YOUR WIFE PERFORMED THE TRAVEL IN QUESTION. IN THE CIRCUMSTANCES THERE EXISTS NO BASIS TO ALLOW YOU REIMBURSEMENT FOR SUCH TRAVEL.