Commerce Employee's Claim for Transfer-Related Expenses

Published by the Government Accountability Office on 1971-06-15.

Below is a raw (and likely hideous) rendition of the original report. (PDF)

                                    InGEST                                663
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*   T~~--71780
                                                       JUN 15 1971

    Kr. crliand M.   yruy
    320 South Clark lrrie
    JAprtween 305
    Los Angeles, California 90048
    Nar ffr. Pyrsm
          Your letter of March 20, 1971, with enclosures, requests far-
    *tbr oessideration of your claim for reimburnt of expenses
    incurred incident to the chainge of your station fro Pcmona,
    Califorrd, to Los Angeles, California, as &A employee of the
                         X#woh was the subject of ou !!jtonpf
    Departnt of Carem1r`e,
    March 17, 1971,,,1w-178O Yado also-refer to       litts of
    April 1 and 19, 1971, with enclosures in which you quetlin Office
    settlement of April 8, 1971, which was issud pursuant to that

         Tour transfer from Poanan, Califora, to Los Angeles,
    California, was directed by trawl order dated Septwber 3, 1969.
    You wre authorised to travI by privately owned autamoble and
    ure authorized transportation of household effects and tmporar
    quarters and subsistence at nw duty station, if necessary. Ry
    Office settlements dated "ecsmber 23, 1970, and April 8, 1971,
    vispeetim1y, you wre allowed *4 as mileage for yaw trnel frm
    Pomona to Los A.ngls and 1t129 as subuistenos for ex mne for
    your oceupacy of temporary quarters.
         With respect to the latter item, w advised you In the deci-
    sion tkat you wre entitled to the allovame authorised as reimbarse-
    ment of subsistence expenmei for yourself while occupying temporary
    quarters. WO -frther said that such allowance was not autiorised
    for yaw fuuily for the reaison that for rea tim prior to your
    notlcw of transfer youwizf and eon occupied quarters other than
    those ocoupied by you and in such cirmstarnos it could not be con-
    eluded that their ooeupaby of such quarters was oiden% to your
    transfer so as to qualify for an Allowanoe on their behalf. There-
    after, yim receivd Office 19tter of March 2, 1971, relative to
    this matter.



      In yuw letter of April 19, I97 you ea that the Office let-
ter called for a split in the s*nas and indicated Mrs. Pyr's
share would be #270. You ask how the amount of '329 was eompted
and contend that the total mmmt due is !408.85 including %4L.25
as interest at 8 percent for 17 mon*h..
     Sioce your entitlement was liited to V.tsw te   rary quarters
e   nore incurred by you only, a    sinc       Po3i-29
submitted by yo were not clear In tiis respect but included exrenses
for you -d your wifo, the Office letter of March 29, 1971,n rquested
yw to "fumdsh a breakdown of your subsistenoe', indicating the
daily expenses-incurred by you &d those incwred ty your vife.* The
letter did not. indicate that any amount would be paid on aacount of
Mrs. P.yr=.
     A1 to the conputatien of the amount of A329, for the first
10 days your exoemns. wre one-half of `&A1.50 for meals and laundry,
t70. 5t,. plus rental. iteus osf 135 and 53 or a total of q258.50.
Since the saxi*= allwanc authorlted by Pudget, Circular No. A-56
for the first      de in87.50, 4           ount wmn allowed in your case
for that period. Since an *xense of Ol50j per week for meals uad
laundry.w shmm for the second and third weks 'yf were allowed am-
half of this or W7O.75 for each of those weeks, or a total of $329 for
the 30-da; period Noyevber 17 to Iecember 16, 1969. Tour present
letter affordA no brads for the allowance of my additional amount.
     The rule    is well establisbd that the psymnt of interest by the
Oovernmnt on     its unpaid accounts or claims may not be made exept
in interes       tos stipulated tor i*, lol and proper contracts or when
the allowance    of interst is spec farly direed by statute.
Angric      v. !grd, 127 U.S. 251V(18 8); bnitd-statekv. North
rlcaa       Transiporttion & ding Co., 253         3XT.    vI       t
                        1.302            lnitd States . Botel Co.,
   U.S         7    )." ware aware ofTno taV ToIwng for the
pmaent     of lnterest dar th, tfacts in your cuse.
      The decision of ?frch. 1', 1971, alsco Was concerned with-you
claims for additioral mileage on vonaohuhr'dte March U, 1968, and for
1.28.9h deducted trm the voucher for ertrairdlea and per diem in-
curred in pulling a U-aul trailer on a te          duty trip to ia a,
California. lou had been rlimburseti for muileae fron Pomna, California.

to Napa, . allfornla, instead of from Orange, California,. to Napa as
claimed. The travel waa perf'onrrd under a travel auorizatio, 'rip
No. 33, dated Pebruary 7, 1968.


                       -C.   ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~.
                                           i     ~   ~   ~   ~   ~
        osad you had claimed reinbursement for "61' rles for travel
frm Orange, California, to Nar*, California. You stated on the
voucher that this mileage involved a circuitous route due to yow
pulling a U-Haul trailer. "e said that the as nistrative office
excluded the excess mileage incident to the circutous route and au-
thorited reimbursement for b75 miles for travel from Pmona to Naps,
that there is no significant difference in mile3gei Netween the points
noted and that no adjustment in mileage is required. Apparently, you
do not diste that conclusion.
     In discussing the iteyi of 12(6.9hb, however, we quoted a letter
from the aministrative office stating that the mileage on the voucher
included 80 miles round trie to %everly Hil to pick up your wife.
In your letter of M'arch 20, 19Th, you point out that the speedmometer
reading was 698 miles anc that you had deducted 80 miles to arrive at
618 miles.     agree with yvur satmeiant, but as noted above, no addi-
tional mileage is due for your travel under the authorization of
February 7, 1968.
      As to your claim for A2M.9L for extra mileae and per diem in-
 cUrrod due to pulling a V-Raul trailer on a teiporary duty trip to
 Napa. you said. the trailer was needed to haul Goverwmat msaterial and
 to haul veroonal belongings because of the rate of Per diem authorized.
In the decision we explained that any reimbursemnt for the hire of a
 trailer would require approvall by the adininivpfre ofice in
 accordanoe with the provisions of section 3.1,aof the Standardized
 Government Regulations. Tie referred to administrative reports dated
*!sroh ll, 1970, and October '6 1970 that the         of a U-Haul trailer
 is not authorized in connectilon with telnporary duty travel, that the
 rental of a U-Raul trailer mas not authorised in your case, and that
 the use of the trailer was more for personal reasons than for carry-
 ing foveraent equipment.
     Tn your letter of March 20, 1971, you say you were the custodian
of a considerable quantity of Oovernwent-owned InstruwrPnts and sup-
plies to be used at both Orange and tapa for the rdt-?roxt Service,
and that the material had to be either shipped back and forth or be
hauled by you. Also,, you say that since the rate of per diem author-
ised was lowr than authorized for other inciviftals such as Wational
Guard technicians, you had tc take personal gear to complete the travel
required by the order.

     Where, as here, the facts in cases as stated by a claimant and as
reported by the administrative office are at variance, it long has been
the rule of our CrMle to accent the a*dinistrative renort in the ab-
sence of convincing evidence to tbs contrary. As stated a.'eve, it is


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                                  I    ~   ~    VJW       asam=2i-               666


 dlinistratively revorted that In your cas the us. of a trailer was
neither authorlied nor required. Also, the rate of pr dtie to which
you were entitled for the teanporary duty he involWed was established
by the Standardized Government Travel Regulations and while you may
regard it as inadequate this does not afford a        for payment of
your claim for  028.9b arising from the unauthorized rental of a
      Accordingly, the decision of March 17, 1971s, is affirmed.
     'With your letter of March 20, 197l, you ulmitted a further claim
for 1l,3l0 for transportation of Government equipmvnt between Orange
and Naia during the years 1965 to 1968. Anparently, such equipment
was trmnsported in rented cor.veyancas and you are basing your clam on
an estimate of comiercial shipping costs of 1167.50 for each occasion
(8 trAp8 0 tl67.to or t1,39C).
     There is no authority for reimbursing an employee for Government
equipment carried by privately rented conveyance (pres;mably -fHaul
trailer) based on the cost by cowrercial carrier. We do not understand
why you did not subait a claim for the rental expenses at the time they
were incurred similar to the claim for ^28.94 previously referred to.
Of course, sach a clals, at this time. would have to be supported by
receipts and have the approval of your agency. Under the cizrmstaces,
we have no basis for consideration of such a. claki.

                                      Sineerely yours,

                                      C=Aptroller General
                                      of the United States

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