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YOU WERE AUTHORIZED TO TRAVEL FROM VILLA ARTEAGA. YOU WERE ALSO AUTHORIZED FIVE DAYS CONSULTATION IN BOGOTA AND WASHINGTON. ROUTE PER DIEM WAS AUTHORIZED TO INCLUDE YOUR DEPENDENTS. PER DIEM FOR DEPENDENTS WAS AUTHORIZED TO INCLUDE ALL NECESSARY (AUTHORIZED) STOPOVERS WHILE IN A TRAVEL STATUS OUTSIDE THE UNITED STATES. THE MODE OF TRAVEL AUTHORIZED WAS "COMMON CARRIER INCLUDING USE OF PRIVATELY OWNED AUTOMOBILE.". WHICH WAS DISALLOWED BY OUR OFFICE SETTLEMENT OF SEPTEMBER 5. WHENEVER SUCH MODE OF TRANSPORTATION IS AUTHORIZED OR APPROVED AS MORE ADVANTAGEOUS TO THE GOVERNMENT (EXCEPT THAT NO DETERMINATION OF ADVANTAGE IS REQUIRED WHERE PAYMENT ON A MILEAGE BASIS IS LIMITED TO COST OF TRAVEL BY COMMON CARRIER.

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B-134092, FEB 4, 1959

PRECIS-UNAVAILABLE

MR. RAYMOND STADELMAN:

YOUR LETTER OF OCTOBER 31, 1958, CONCERNS OUR SETTLEMENT OF SEPTEMBER 5, 1958, WHICH DISALLOWED YOUR CLAIM FOR ADDITIONAL REIMBURSEMENT OF TRAVEL EXPENSES AND PER DIEM IN LIEU OF SUBSISTENCE DURING THE PERIOD OCTOBER 1, 1956, TO APRIL 3, 1957, PURSUANT TO TRAVEL AUTHORIZATION COL. 105-57(INT), DATED OCTOBER 2, 1956, AS AMENDED JANUARY 8, 1957, AND JANUARY 15, 1957, ISSUED TO YOU AS AN EMPLOYEE OF THE INSTITUTE OF INTER-AMERICAN AFFAIRS, INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION ADMINISTRATION.

BY THE INSTITUTE OF INTER-AMERICAN AFFAIRS AUTHORIZATION OF TRAVEL, YOU WERE AUTHORIZED TO TRAVEL FROM VILLA ARTEAGA, COLUMBIA, TO CHICAGO, ILLINOIS, WITH YOUR DEPENDENTS, AND RETURN TO VILLA ARTEAGA, FOR HOME LEAVE INCLUDING EXTENDED ANNUAL LEAVE. YOU WERE ALSO AUTHORIZED FIVE DAYS CONSULTATION IN BOGOTA AND WASHINGTON, D. C., ON THE GOING TRIP AND FIVE DAYS CONSULTATION IN GUATENALA AND COSTA RICA ON THE RETURN TRIP. ROUTE PER DIEM WAS AUTHORIZED TO INCLUDE YOUR DEPENDENTS, WITH THE EXCEPTION OF CONSULTATION PERIODS, DURING TRAVEL TO THE UNITED STATES. RETURNING TO YOUR POST, PER DIEM FOR DEPENDENTS WAS AUTHORIZED TO INCLUDE ALL NECESSARY (AUTHORIZED) STOPOVERS WHILE IN A TRAVEL STATUS OUTSIDE THE UNITED STATES. THE MODE OF TRAVEL AUTHORIZED WAS "COMMON CARRIER INCLUDING USE OF PRIVATELY OWNED AUTOMOBILE."

THE RECORD SHOWS THAT FOR THE TRAVEL INVOLVED YOU CLAIMED REIMBURSEMENT FOR $2,320.99. THE ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICE ALLOWED YOU $1,262.69 OF THE AMOUNT CLAIMED AND SUSPENDED $1,058.30. YOU THEN SUBMITTED RECLAIM VOUCHER FOR $964.66, WHICH WAS DISALLOWED BY OUR OFFICE SETTLEMENT OF SEPTEMBER 5, 1958.

SECTION 4 OF THE TRAVEL EXPENSE ACT OF 1949, 63 STAT. 166, AS AMENDED, AND SECTION 3.5B(1) OF THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS, PROVIDE FOR OFFICIAL TRAVEL ON A MILEAGE BASIS AT NOT TO EXCEED $0.10 PER MILE FOR THE USE OF A PRIVATELY OWNED AUTOMOBILE, WHENEVER SUCH MODE OF TRANSPORTATION IS AUTHORIZED OR APPROVED AS MORE ADVANTAGEOUS TO THE GOVERNMENT (EXCEPT THAT NO DETERMINATION OF ADVANTAGE IS REQUIRED WHERE PAYMENT ON A MILEAGE BASIS IS LIMITED TO COST OF TRAVEL BY COMMON CARRIER, INCLUDING PER DIEM IN EACH CASE). YOU APPEAR TO CONTEND THAT WHEN THE USE OF A PRIVATELY OWNED AUTOMOBILE IS AUTHORIZED, THAT MODE OF TRANSPORTATION CONSTITUTES PRIMA FACIO EVIDENCE THAT THERE HAS BEEN A COMPLIANCE WITH THE LEGAL OBLIGATION TO MAKE SUCH A DETERMINATION OF ADVANTAGE. WHEN TRAVEL BY PRIVATELY OWNED AUTOMOBILE IS AUTHORIZED ON MILEAGE BASIS FOR TRAVEL ON OFFICIAL BUSINESS BUT NO DETERMINATION OF ADVANTAGE TO THE GOVERNMENT IS MADE UNDER PARAGRAPH 3.5B(1) OF THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS MILEAGE IS LIMITED TO THE COST OF TRAVEL BY COMMON CARRIER BETWEEN THE POINTS INVOLVED. SEE 29 COMP. GEN. 193. WE CANNOT, AS YOU URGE, ASSUME THAT A DETERMINATION OF ADVANTAGE HAS BEEN MADE MERELY BECAUSE AN EMPLOYEE IS AUTHORIZED THE USE OF HIS PRIVATELY OWNED AUTOMOBILE. IN YOUR CASE, THEREFORE, NO AMOUNT IN EXCESS OF COST BY COMMON CARRIER MAY BE ALLOWED IN ABSENCE OF A "CLARIFICATION" OF INTENT BY THE AUTHORIZING OFFICIAL SO FAR AS USE OF YOUR AUTOMOBILE. IN THAT REGARD IT IS TO BE NOTED THAT BOTH THE STATUTE AND THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS REFER ONLY TO THE MAXIMUM MILEAGE RATE THAT MAY BE AUTHORIZED. ADMINISTRATIVE ACTION IS NECESSARY TO SET THE SPECIFIC RATE OF MILEAGE AND TO DETERMINE THE MATTER OF ADVANTAGE TO THE GOVERNMENT. OUR OFFICE HAS NO INFORMATION CONCERNING THE PROVISIONS OF THE "IIAA ADMINISTRATIVE FIELD MANUAL," WHICH MANUAL MAY CLARIFY THE ADMINISTRATIVE POSITION CONCERNING USE OF PRIVATELY OWNED AUTOMOBILES.

ALSO, YOU CONTEND THAT REIMBURSEMENT FOR THE COST OF CONSTRUCTIVE TRAVEL SHOULD NOT BE CONFIRMED TO AIRPLANE WHEN AIR TRAVEL WAS NOT MENTIONED IN YOUR TRAVEL ORDER. YOUR TRAVEL ORDER AUTHORIZED THE USE OF COMMON CARRIER INCLUDING USE OF PRIVATELY OWNED AUTOMOBILE. THE TRAVEL ORDER ALSO PROVIDED THAT YOU WERE TO BE REIMBURSED FOR THE TRAVEL PERFORMED IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS. UNDER PARAGRAPH 3.1 OF THE STANDARDIZED GOVERNMENT TRAVEL REGULATIONS TRAVEL BY AIRPLANE IS UPON THE SAME BASIS AS TRAVEL BY OTHER COMMON CARRIER. SEE 26 COMP. GEN. 693. SINCE YOU PERFORMED PART OF THE TRAVEL BY AIR YOUR CONSTRUCTIVE TRAVEL WAS COMPUTED ON THE BASIS OF A ROUND TRIP BY AIR.

THE ATTACHED TABULATION SHOWS HOW THE SUM ALLOWED ADMINISTRATIVELY WAS COMPUTED BY DIRECT ROUTE BY AIR FROM VILLA ARTEAGA, TO BOGOTA, TO WASHINGTON, D. C., TO CHICAGO, ILLINOIS, AND RETURN TO VILLA ARTEAGA BY WAY OF GUATEMALA AND COSTA RICA. FROM THE TOTAL SHOWN THERE WAS DEDUCTED $1,011 REPRESENTING COST OF AIR LINE TICKETS PURCHASED ON GOVERNMENT TRANSPORTATION REQUESTS USED BY YOU, LEAVING A BALANCE OF $1,262.69 WHICH THE RECORDS SHOW HAS BEEN PAID TO YOU. THE TOTAL COST OF AIR TRAVEL OF $1,256.43 WAS BASED ON TRAVEL TO CHICAGO VIA WASHINGTON, D. C., AND RETURN TO MEDELLIN VIA GUATEMALA AND COSTA RICA; WHEREAS THE COST OF $1,574.40 TO WHICH YOU REFER WOULD BE FOR RETURN VIA MEXICO CITY.

CONCERNING TAXICAB FARES WHICH MAY HAVE BEEN INCURRED IF THE TRAVEL HAD BEEN PERFORMED BY AIR YOU ARE ADVISED THAT IF YOU WILL SUBMIT FIGURES SHOWING SUCH COSTS TO OUR OFFICE THE MATTER WILL BE GIVEN CAREFUL CONSIDERATION. CONCERNING BAGGAGE TRANSPORTATION COSTS, IT SUFFICES TO SAY THAT WHILE YOUR ORDER AUTHORIZED SHIPMENT OF EXCESS BAGGAGE BY AIR IT DOES NOT APPEAR THAT YOU UTILIZED THIS AUTHORITY FOR THE AIR TRAVEL ACTUALLY PERFORMED. THEREFORE, NO BASIS IS APPARENT FOR CONSIDERING EXCESS BAGGAGE IN THIS INSTANCE.

UPON THE PRESENT RECORD, THE SETTLEMENT OF SEPTEMBER 5, 1958, WHICH DISALLOWED YOUR RECLAIM FOR ADDITIONAL REIMBURSEMENT OF TRAVEL EXPENSES AND PER DIEM IN LIEU OF SUBSISTENCE IS SUSTAINED.

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