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WHICH ARE USED IN TRANSPORTING PRISONERS. THE QUESTIONS ARE (1) WHETHER EMPLOYEES WHO PURCHASE ANNUAL PERMITS FOR THEIR PERSONAL AUTOMOBILES FOR USE ON THE NEW YORK STATE THRUWAY MAY BE REIMBURSED THE NORMAL TOLL CHARGES FOR OFFICIAL TRAVEL ON WHICH THE PERMITS ARE USED. (2) WHETHER THERE MAY BE INCLUDED IN THE UNITED STATES MARSHALS MANUAL GENERAL AUTHORITY TO EACH MARSHAL TO DETERMINE WHEN THE USE OF A TOLL ROAD FOR TRAVEL BY HIM OR HIS DEPUTIES IS ADMINISTRATIVELY ADVANTAGEOUS AS COMPARED WITH THE USE OF A PARALLEL FREE HIGHWAY. SUCH TRANSPORTATION NORMALLY IS ACCOMPLISHED BY THE USE OF PERSONALLY OWNED AUTOMOBILES ON A MILEAGE BASIS * * *. TRANSPORTATION OF PRISONERS BY AUTOMOBILE IN THIS MANNER IS IMMEASURABLY MORE ECONOMICAL THAN THE TRANSPORTATION OF THE SAME NUMBER OF PERSONS BY COMMON CARRIER AND USE OF THE THRUWAY WILL REDUCE THE TRAVEL TIME FROM NEARLY THREE DAYS TO A LITTLE LESS THAN TWO DAYS.

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B-122933, MAY 2, 1955, 34 COMP. GEN. 556

TOLLS - HIGHWAY - PURCHASE OF ANNUAL PERMITS - REIMBURSEMENT UNITED STATES MARSHALS WHO PURCHASE ANNUAL TOLL ROAD PERMITS FOR PERSONALLY-OWNED AUTOMOBILES, WHICH ARE USED IN TRANSPORTING PRISONERS, MAY BE REIMBURSED THE EQUIVALENT TOLL CHARGES FOR OFFICIAL TRAVEL ON A PER TRIP BASIS IF THE REIMBURSEMENT DOES NOT EXCEED THE COST OF THE ANNUAL PERMITS. UNDER THE ACT OF MAY 24, 1949, WHICH AUTHORIZES THE ATTORNEY GENERAL TO PROMULGATE REGULATIONS FOR USE OF PRIVATELY-OWNED AUTOMOBILES BY UNITED STATES MARSHALS ON OFFICIAL BUSINESS, A PROVISION MAY BE INCLUDED IN THE U.S. MARSHALS MANUAL DELEGATING AUTHORITY TO THE MARSHALS TO MAKE DETERMINATIONS REGARDING THE USE OF TOLL ROADS RATHER THAN PARALLEL FREE HIGHWAYS.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL CAMPBELL TO THE ATTORNEY GENERAL, MAY 2, 1955:

THE ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT ATTORNEY GENERAL'S LETTER OF FEBRUARY 11, 1955, REQUESTS A DECISION ON TWO QUESTIONS INVOLVING THE USE OF TOLL HIGHWAYS FOR OFFICIAL TRAVEL BY UNITED STATES MARSHALS AND THEIR DEPUTIES. THE QUESTIONS ARE (1) WHETHER EMPLOYEES WHO PURCHASE ANNUAL PERMITS FOR THEIR PERSONAL AUTOMOBILES FOR USE ON THE NEW YORK STATE THRUWAY MAY BE REIMBURSED THE NORMAL TOLL CHARGES FOR OFFICIAL TRAVEL ON WHICH THE PERMITS ARE USED, AND (2) WHETHER THERE MAY BE INCLUDED IN THE UNITED STATES MARSHALS MANUAL GENERAL AUTHORITY TO EACH MARSHAL TO DETERMINE WHEN THE USE OF A TOLL ROAD FOR TRAVEL BY HIM OR HIS DEPUTIES IS ADMINISTRATIVELY ADVANTAGEOUS AS COMPARED WITH THE USE OF A PARALLEL FREE HIGHWAY.

THE LETTER OF FEBRUARY 11 STATES THAT:

* * * THE UNITED STATES MARSHAL'S OFFICE FOR THE WESTERN JUDICIAL DISTRICT OF NEW YORK HAS OCCASION TO TRANSPORT PRISONERS FROM BUFFALO OR ROCHESTER TO THE FEDERAL DETENTION HEADQUARTERS IN NEW YORK CITY. SUCH TRANSPORTATION NORMALLY IS ACCOMPLISHED BY THE USE OF PERSONALLY OWNED AUTOMOBILES ON A MILEAGE BASIS * * *. THE SEVEN CENTS PER MILE PAID FOR THE USE OF THE PRIVATELY OWNED VEHICLE PAYS FOR THE DEPUTY'S TRAVEL, THAT OF A GUARD OVER THE PRISONER, AND ONE OR MORE PRISONERS. TRANSPORTATION OF PRISONERS BY AUTOMOBILE IN THIS MANNER IS IMMEASURABLY MORE ECONOMICAL THAN THE TRANSPORTATION OF THE SAME NUMBER OF PERSONS BY COMMON CARRIER AND USE OF THE THRUWAY WILL REDUCE THE TRAVEL TIME FROM NEARLY THREE DAYS TO A LITTLE LESS THAN TWO DAYS. THE DEPARTMENT, THEREFORE, ENCOURAGES THE USE OF PERSONALLY OWNED AUTOMOBILES IN THE PERFORMANCE OF SUCH DUTIES OF THE UNITED STATES MARSHAL'S OFFICE, AS WELL AS FOR THE SERVICE OF PROCESS. * * *

IT FURTHER STATES THAT TOLLS ON THE THRUWAY ARE FIXED ON A MILEAGE BASIS BUT THAT IT IS POSSIBLE TO PURCHASE WHAT AMOUNTS TO AN UNLIMITED ANNUAL PASS FOR A FEE OF TWENTY DOLLARS. THE PERMIT MAY NOT BE PURCHASED FOR USE ON A CAR REGISTERED IN ANOTHER STATE OR CARRYING A GOVERNMENT LICENSE PLATE. IT MAY BE PURCHASED ONLY FOR USE ON A PARTICULAR VEHICLE AND MUST BE PERMANENTLY ATTACHED TO THAT VEHICLE. THERE IS NO ALTERNATIVE TO THE PAYMENT OF TOLL CHARGES FOR TRAVEL ON THE THRUWAY BY EMPLOYEES USING THEIR CARS ON OFFICIAL BUSINESS. THE LETTER POINTS OUT THAT EACH STATE EMPLOYEE WHO USES HIS PERSONAL AUTOMOBILE FOR TRAVEL ON STATE BUSINESS IS PERMITTED TO PURCHASE AN ANNUAL PERMIT AND TO SUBMIT THE EQUIVALENT TOLL FOR MILEAGE ON HIS EXPENSE ACCOUNT UNTIL THE ENTIRE COST OF THE PERMIT HAS BEEN REPAID TO HIM.

IT IS PROPOSED THAT IT BE SUGGESTED TO EACH INDIVIDUAL INVOLVED THAT HE PERSONALLY PURCHASE AN ANNUAL PERMIT. REIMBURSEMENT OF THE EQUIVALENT TOLL CHARGE FOR OFFICIAL TRAVEL WOULD BE MADE UPON HIS SUBMITTING WITH HIS EXPENSE ACCOUNT THE TOLL RECEIPT FOR THE OFFICIAL TRAVEL, INDICATING THE MILEAGE TRAVELED AND THE NORMAL TOLL WHICH WOULD HAVE BEEN COLLECTED FOR THE TRIP IF THE PERMIT HAD NOT BEEN USED. IT WILL BE MUTUALLY UNDERSTOOD THAT, AFTER THE GOVERNMENT HAS PAID AN AMOUNT EQUALING THE COST OF THE PERMIT, NO FURTHER CLAIM WILL BE MADE BY THE EMPLOYEE FOR TOLL EXPENSES OVER THE THRUWAY FOR THE REMAINDER OF THE PERMIT YEAR.

UNDER THE PROPOSED REIMBURSEMENT PROCEDURE THE GOVERNMENT WOULD NOT BE REQUIRED TO PAY MORE THAN THE EQUIVALENT TOLL FOR THE MILEAGE TRAVELED ON OFFICIAL BUSINESS. ALSO, IN VIEW OF THE STATEMENTS IN THE QUOTED PORTION OF THE LETTER, IT IS PRESUMED THAT THERE HAS BEEN AN ADMINISTRATIVE APPROVAL FOR USE OF THE THRUWAY IN THE RELATED CIRCUMSTANCES. ACCORDINGLY, WE PERCEIVE NO OBJECTION TO THE PROPOSAL PROVIDED ADMINISTRATIVE PROCEDURE IS ADOPTED TO INSURE THAT THE TOLLS REIMBURSED TO THE EMPLOYEES DO NOT EXCEED THE COST OF THE ANNUAL PERMITS.

CONCERNING THE SECOND QUESTION, THE ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT ATTORNEY GENERAL STATES THAT IT IS IMPOSSIBLE FOR AN OFFICIAL OF THE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE PERSONALLY TO AUTHORIZE OR APPROVE THE MANY TRIPS WHICH ARE INVOLVED IN THE SERVICE OF PROCESS AND THE TRANSPORTATION OF PRISONERS BY MARSHALS AND THEIR DEPUTIES THROUGHOUT THE COUNTRY IN THE COURSE OF A YEAR. THE ATTORNEY GENERAL, PURSUANT TO 28 U.S.C. 553, IS AUTHORIZED TO PROMULGATE REGULATIONS COVERING MILEAGE PAYMENTS--- NOT TO EXCEED SEVEN CENTS PER MILE AS MORE ADVANTAGEOUS TO THE GOVERNMENT TOGETHER WITH THE ACTUAL COST OF ROAD TOLLS--- TO MARSHALS AND THEIR DEPUTIES FOR USE OF PRIVATELY OWNED AUTOMOBILES ON OFFICIAL BUSINESS. HE HAS DELEGATED THE FOLLOWING GENERAL TRAVEL AUTHORITY TO THE UNITED STATES MARSHALS (504.01 UNITED STATES MARSHALS MANUAL):

UNITED STATES MARSHALS ARE DESIGNATED AND AUTHORIZED TO DIRECT AND APPROVE TRAVEL OF THEMSELVES AND THEIR SALARIED DEPUTIES WITHIN OR WITHOUT THEIR RESPECTIVE DISTRICTS IN THE EXECUTION OF PROCESS, OR WITHIN SUCH DISTRICTS TO ATTEND SESSIONS OF THE COURT.

IT IS PROPOSED TO SUPPLEMENT THE ABOVE GENERAL AUTHORITY OF THE MARSHALS SUBSTANTIALLY AS FOLLOWS:

WHENEVER THE MARSHAL DETERMINES THAT THE USE OF A TOLL ROAD IS ADMINISTRATIVELY ADVANTAGEOUS AS COMPARED WITH THE USE OF A PARALLEL FREE HIGHWAY HE MAY SPECIFICALLY AUTHORIZE OR APPROVE THE USE OF THE TOLL ROAD FOR HIS TRAVEL OR THAT OF HIS DEPUTIES. IN REACHING THE DETERMINATION OF ADVANTAGE THE MARSHAL SHOULD TAKE INTO ACCOUNT THE COMPARATIVE EXPENSES, THE SAVING OF THE TRAVELER'S TIME, AND THE SECURITY FACTORS THAT MAY BE INVOLVED. EACH SUCH SEPARATE AUTHORIZATION OR APPROVAL IS SUBJECT TO FUTURE SUBSTANTIATION IF QUESTIONED BY THE GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE IN THE AUDIT OF THE ACCOUNTS. MARSHALS ARE THEREFORE CAUTIONED TO BE SURE OF THEIR DETERMINATIONS.

IN VIEW OF THE AUTHORITY CONFERRED UPON THE ATTORNEY GENERAL TO PROMULGATE REGULATIONS FOR MILEAGE FOR USE OF PRIVATELY OWNED AUTOMOBILES BY UNITED STATES MARSHALS AND THEIR DEPUTIES, AND AS THE PROPOSED REGULATORY PROVISION APPEARS TO BE A REASONABLE EXERCISE OF THAT AUTHORITY, WE HAVE NO OBJECTION TO THE PROVISION BEING INCLUDED IN THE UNITED STATES MARSHALS MANUAL.

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