B-155450, NOV. 10, 1964

B-155450: Nov 10, 1964

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THE CLAIM WHICH WAS FILED IN DECEMBER 1963 COVERS 615 HOURS OF OVERTIME SERVICES ALLEGED TO HAVE BEEN PERFORMED DURING THE CALENDAR YEARS 1956 AND 1957. WHILE THE RECORDS FOR THE ENTIRE PERIOD HAD NOT BEEN LOCATED AT THE TIME OF THE AGENCY'S REPORT TO US IN THE MATTER IT APPEARS FROM YOUR STATEMENTS AND FROM THE RECORDS EXAMINED THAT YOUR CLAIMS IS BASED UPON ATTENDANCE DURING NONDUTY HOURS AT MEETINGS. PICNICS AND OTHER FUNCTIONS OF 4-H CLUBS AND SIMILAR ORGANIZATIONS WHICH ALSO WERE ATTENDED BY MANY OTHER EMPLOYEES WITHOUT COMPENSATION. THE DISALLOWANCE OF YOUR CLAIM WAS PREDICATED UPON THE REPORT OF THE AGENCY THAT YOUR ATTENDANCE WAS NOT MANDATORY BUT WAS ON A VOLUNTARY BASIS AND THAT NEITHER YOU NOR THE OTHER EMPLOYEES WERE PROMISED OVERTIME COMPENSATION OR COMPENSATORY TIME OFF THEREFOR.

B-155450, NOV. 10, 1964

TO MR. WILLIAM S. VAN BOOVEN:

THIS REFERS TO YOUR LETTER OF OCTOBER 13, 1964, REQUESTING REVIEW OF SETTLEMENT DATED OCTOBER 8, 1964, WHICH DISALLOWED YOUR CLAIM FOR OVERTIME COMPENSATION INCIDENT TO YOUR EMPLOYMENT WITH THE BUREAU OF INDIAN AFFAIRS, COLORADO RIVER AGENCY.

THE CLAIM WHICH WAS FILED IN DECEMBER 1963 COVERS 615 HOURS OF OVERTIME SERVICES ALLEGED TO HAVE BEEN PERFORMED DURING THE CALENDAR YEARS 1956 AND 1957. WHILE THE RECORDS FOR THE ENTIRE PERIOD HAD NOT BEEN LOCATED AT THE TIME OF THE AGENCY'S REPORT TO US IN THE MATTER IT APPEARS FROM YOUR STATEMENTS AND FROM THE RECORDS EXAMINED THAT YOUR CLAIMS IS BASED UPON ATTENDANCE DURING NONDUTY HOURS AT MEETINGS, OUTINGS, PICNICS AND OTHER FUNCTIONS OF 4-H CLUBS AND SIMILAR ORGANIZATIONS WHICH ALSO WERE ATTENDED BY MANY OTHER EMPLOYEES WITHOUT COMPENSATION. THE DISALLOWANCE OF YOUR CLAIM WAS PREDICATED UPON THE REPORT OF THE AGENCY THAT YOUR ATTENDANCE WAS NOT MANDATORY BUT WAS ON A VOLUNTARY BASIS AND THAT NEITHER YOU NOR THE OTHER EMPLOYEES WERE PROMISED OVERTIME COMPENSATION OR COMPENSATORY TIME OFF THEREFOR.

IN YOUR PRESENT LETTER YOU SAY YOU DID NOT VOLUNTEER FOR ANY OF THE SERVICE INVOLVED, POINTING OUT AS EXAMPLES THAT YOUR ATTENDANCE AT THE SUPERINTENDENT'S "GOING AWAY" PARTY WAS NOT FOR YOUR OWN ENJOYMENT BUT THAT YOU WERE IN CHARGE OF REFRESHMENTS, ETC., AND YOUR ATTENDANCE AT THE 4-H CLUB FUNCTIONS WAS NECESSARY SINCE THE LEADERS OF SUCH CLUBS "DID NOT KNOW THEIR WAY AROUND OR HAVE TRANSPORTATION.' THOSE REPORTED FACTS WOULD NOT CREATE AN OBLIGATION ON THE PART OF THE UNITED STATES TO PAY FOR YOUR CONTRIBUTED SERVICES.

THE FEDERAL EMPLOYEES PAY ACT OF 1945, AS AMENDED, 5 U.S.C. 911, AND THE IMPLEMENTING REGULATIONS. PROVIDE FOR PAYMENT FOR OVERTIME WHEN ORDERED OR APPROVED BY AN OFFICER OR EMPLOYEE TO WHOM SUCH AUTHORITY HAS BEEN GRANTED.

WE HAVE NO FIRST-HAND KNOWLEDGE OF THE FACTS GIVING RISE TO THE MANY CLAIMS THAT ARE RECEIVED HERE BUT MUST RELY UPON THE INFORMATION FURNISHED BY THE CLAIMANTS AND THE REPORTS WHICH WE OBTAIN FROM THE DEPARTMENTS AND ESTABLISHMENTS INVOLVED. FURTHER, IN CASES OF DISPUTES BETWEEN THE CLAIMANTS AND THE ADMINISTRATIVE AGENCIES AS TO THE MATERIAL FACTS SURROUNDING THE CLAIM, IT IS THE WELL-ESTABLISHED RULE THAT ACCOUNTING OFFICERS MUST ACCEPT THE FACTS AS ESTABLISHED BY THE OFFICIAL RECORDS IN THE ABSENCE OF EVIDENCE SUFFICIENT TO OVERCOME THE PRESUMPTION OF THE CORRECTNESS OF SUCH RECORDS.

THE AGENCY HAS REPORTED THAT THE ATTENDANCE AND PARTICIPATION IN THE MEETINGS AND OTHER FUNCTIONS OF THE 4-H CLUBS AND OTHER ORGANIZATIONS UPON WHICH YOUR CLAIM IS BASED WERE NOT ORDERED OR APPROVED AS OVERTIME SERVICE UNDER THE GOVERNING STATUTES AND REGULATIONS. THEREFORE, WE HAVE NO ALTERNATIVE BUT TO SUSTAIN THE DISALLOWANCE OF OCTOBER 8, 1964.

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