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GRATUITIES—REENLISTMENT ALLOWANCE_ENLISTED MEN OF
An enlisted man of the Navy given a “good discharge " with a recommendation
for reenlistment is "honorably discharged" within the purview of section 10, act of June 10, 1922, 42 Stat., 630, and is entitled to the reenlistment allowance upon reenlistment within three months after the receipt of such
discharge. The time of an enlisted man of the Navy under arrest and while serving sen
tences of court-martial is not service which may be counted in computing the number of years served in the enlistment from which last discharged
for the purpose of reenlistment gratuity. Comptroller General McCarl to Lieut. G. M. Snead, United States Navy, April 10, 1923: I have your letter of March 12, 1923, as follows:
1. Your decision is requested as to whether the above-named man is or is not entitled to reenlistment gratuity upon reenlistment March 7, 1923.
2. Archer first enlisted June 4, 1919; Feb. 25, 1921, was sentenced and confined in naval prison, Paris Island; restored to duty Aug. 12, 1921 ; and March 6, 1923, discharged with a "good" discharge.
3. In accordance with above reference it would appear that men receiving discharges other than “honorable" if under honorable conditions are entitled to reenlistment gratuity.
4. Should time served in a naval prison be deducted in computing length of service in figuring amount of reenlistment gratuity entitled to; and also in determining the period of pay he should be credited with?
Section 10 of the act of June 10, 1922, 42 Stat., 630, provided, in part, as follows:
Existing laws authorizing a reenlistment gratuity to enlisted meri of the Navy and Coast Guard are hereby repealed, and an enlistment allowance equal to $50 multiplied by the number of years served in the enlistment period from which he has last been discharged, but rot to exceed $200, shall be paid to every hon crably discharged enlisted man of the first three grades who reenlists within a period of three months from the date of his discharge; and an enlistment allowance of $25 multiplied by the number of years served in the enlistment period from which he has last been discharged, but not to exceed $100, shall be paid to every honorably discharged enlisted man of the other grades who reenlists within a period of three months from the date of his discharge.
The receipt by Archer on March 6, 1923, of a “good” discharge, coupled with the recommendation for reenlistment, brings him within the status as “honorably discharged” within the meaning of section 10.
While there is no such specific legislation covering the Navy As for the Army in the matter of making up what is termed lost time, and what shall be the status of certain portions of enlistment periods for which no service is rendered within the intent of section 10, periods while under arrest and while serving sentences of courtmartial are not periods of " service” to be included in making up the “number of years served in the enlistment period from which he has last been discharged.” 2 Comp. Gen., 162.
Your question is answered accordingly.
TRAVELING EXPENSES-COOPERATIVE HEALTH WORK. An empleyee of the Public Health Service on leave of absence may render
assistance to an unofficial organization in rural sanitation work and may be reimbursed by such unofficial organization not to exceed the actual
amount of his expenses so incurred. An employee of the Public Health Service not on leave of absence may not
render any assistance to an unofficial organization in rural sanitation work except in connection with demonstration work for which the State, county or municipality agrees to pay one-half of expenses, and may not be reimbursed by such unofficial organization for assistance so rendered except indirectly as such organization may contribute to the State, county, or municipality thus enabling the State, county, or municipality to pay one
half or more of the expense of such cooperation. Comptroller General McCarl to the Secretary of the Treasury, April 10, 1923:
By indorsement reference without date you request decision of a question presented by the Surgeon General, Public Health Service, in his letter of March 24, 1923, to you as follows:
In the act making appropriations for the Treasury Department for the fiscal year ending June 30, 1923, and for other purposes, 42 Stat., 380, provision is made for cooperative health work in counties and municipalities of States which elect to pay at least one-half of the expenses. This act in part reads as follows:
“Rural sanitation : For special studies of, and demonstration work in, rural sanitation, including personal services, and including not to exceed $5,000 for the purchase, maintenance, repair, and operation of motor-propelled passenger carrying vehicles, $50,000: Provided, That no part of this appropriation shall be available for demonstration work in rural sanitation in any community unless the State, county, or municipality in which the community is located agrees to pay one-half of the expense of such demonstration work.”
In the enforcement of the above provision, and the expenditure of the appropriation made thereby, every effort is made to have the counties and municipalities bear as large a proportion of the expenditures as possible, the proportion during the last fiscal year being approximately 10% by the Federal Government and 90% by the State and local health agencies. Inasmuch as such work is educational in character, it should accordingly
be participated in also by unofficial organizations in order to perpetuate it. These agencies are encouraged by the State and local authorities to take part in the work in their immediate sections of the county or community interested. Their work consists principally in stimulating the interest of individuals in the movement going on and the assembling of public meetings to accomplish this purpose. Furthermore, these unofficial organizations invite the Federal and State officers in charge of the work to attend these meetings and give an address, the unofficial organizations offering to bear the traveling expenses. This duty on the part of these officers is incidental to their work in the supervision of the administration in the county. It is desirable for them, there. fore, to accept such invitations and to perform the additional services requested in the interest of the public health. The payment of the necessary travel expenses does not bring about the payment of increased salaries of the agents concerned, most of whose salaries are fixed by statute.
An act of March 3, 1917 (section 1, 39 Stat. L. 1106), states as follows:
“On and after July 1, 1919, no Government official or employee shall receive any salary in connection with his services as such an official or employee from any source other than the Government of the United States, except as may be contributed out of the treasury of any State, county, or municipality, and no person, association, or corporation shall make any contribution to, or in any way supplement the salary of, any Government official or employee for the services performed by him for the Government of the United States."
Inasmuch as the compensation of the officers engaged in this work are not affected by contributions from any source, nor the appropriations from which they are paid increased by the payment of traveling expenses by any person. associatior., or corporation, and since the studies of and demonstrations in rural
sanitation are of necessity cooperative in nature, it is respectfully requested that a decision of the Comptroller General be solicited as to whether it would be legal for the field agent of the Public Health Service to have his expenses for travel necessary in the accomplishment of this cooperative educational and demonstrational work paid in whole or part with funds provided by unofficial agencies.
If the service to be rendered at the request of the unofficial organization is to be rendered while the Public Health Service officer is on leave of absence, and therefore not entitled to travel expenses from United States funds, there would be no legal objection to payment or reimbursement by the unofficial organization of not to exceed the exact amount of his actual expenses in connection with such service. But if he is not on leave, he is precluded by the language of the appropriation from performing any service for an unofficial organization except demonstration work for which the State, county, or municipality agrees to pay one-half of the expenses. The law does not prohibit the State, county, or municipality from paying more than one-half of the expenses of any such demonstration work, and in so far as the Federal Government is concerned there is no legal objection to the unofficial organization contributing to the State, county, or municipality all or any part of the expenses of such work, thus enabling the State, county, or municipality to pay one-half or more of the expenses of a greater amount of demonstration work than otherwise could be paid for by it.
The question submitted is answered accordingly.
TRAVELING EXPENSES—PER DIEM IN LIEU OF SUBSISTENCEOFFICERS OF THE ARMY, NAVY, AND PUBLIC HEALTH SERVICE DETAILED TO VETERANS' BUREAU.
Officers of the Army, Navy, or Public Health Service lawfully detailed to duty
with the Veterans' Bureau are subject to the orders of the director of that bureau in the performance of official travel, and he may, in lieu of mileage, prescribe actual expenses only for repeated travel, or per diem in lieu of subsistence, if such allowances are provided for by general regulations of the department or service to which the officer in question belongs; if the regulations of the particular department or service do not authorize such allowances generally but require individual orders in each case, such
officers may only be allowed mileage. 2 Comp. Gen., 375, amplified. The allowable traveling and subsistence expenses of officers of the Army, Navy,
or Public Health Service incurred when changing station pursuant to authorized detail to the Veterans' Bureau, or during official travel while on such detail, are payable directly to the officers from the bureau ap
propriations. Comptroller General McCarl to the Director, United States Veterans' Bureau,
April 10, 1923:
There was received March 9, 1923, your request for a decision relative to the issuance of travel orders to, and payment of expenses incurred in pursuance thereof by, officers of the Army, Navy, and United States Public Health Service on lawfully authorized detail with the Veterans' Bureau in view of 2 Comp. Gen., 375, which states:
Under the act of June 10, 1922, for readjustment of the pay of the military forces, etc., section 12, 42 Stat., 631, authorizing travel allowances, makes provision for the payment, under specific conditions, of actual traveling expenses or per diems to officers mentioned therein, but as it is stipulated that the heads of those departments therein specified as being concerned should direct or order the allowance of such per diems, they would not appear to be allowable otherwise,
The questions asked by you and the answers thereto are as follows: 1. Under this ruling must all travel in the interest of the United States Veterans' Bureau by officers of the Army, Navy, and U. S. Public Health Service detailed to this bureau be directed by the heads of the departments from which they are detailed, or when detailed to this bureau is the travel by such officers to be under the direction and control of the Director of the Veterans' Bureau ?
As long as an officer of any of the branches of service mentioned above continues in the performance of duties pertaining to the United States Veterans' Bureau under a detail duly authorized by law, he is subject to orders of the director of the bureau. If travel is essential in the proper execution of bureau activities, the director may issue the necessary orders, and if actual expenses or per diem in lieu of subsistence is the basis of reimbursement the orders should show that under section 12 of the act of June 10, 1922, 42 Stat., 631, it is repeated travel, that by general regulations (cited in the order by date and proper reference) of the branch of the service to which the officer belongs actual expenses may be directed in lieu of mileage; and that by general regulations (cited in the order by date and proper reference) a per diem allowance may be directed in lieu of actual expenses of subsistence. If the regulations of the service to which the officer belongs do not authorize, generally, payment of actual expenses for repeated travel, or do not authorize, generally, per diem in lieu of subsistence in such case, but require such orders to issue only in individual cases, officers of such service detailed to and traveling on business of the Veterans' Bureau will be entitled only to mileage, payable under the bureau's appropriation for traveling expenses. See in this connection 2 Comp. Gen., 72, as well as 2 Comp. Gen., 373.
2. If the travel in the interest and on behalf of the U. S. Veterans' Bureau by such detailed officers is under the direction and control of the director, should the expenses of such travel be paid direct to the officers performing the duty, or must such expenses be paid by the department from which such officers are detailed and the Veterans' Bureau reimburse such department by transferring the amounts to the appropriations of the department from which such traveling expenses are paid?
The act of June 12, 1922, 42 Stat., 648, making appropriations for the United States Veterans' Bureau for the fiscal year ending June 30, 1923, includes traveling and subsistence under miscella
neous es penses, and allowances for travel performed by such officers for the bureau should be paid to them under the bureau appropriation chargeable with the expenses.
3. In your decision of November 14, 1922, 2 Comp. Gen., 325, you held that the transfer of funds appropriated in the act of May 11, 1922, could not be made, and the question arises as to how payment is to be made from the appro priation of this bureau for the expense of travel of commissioned personnel
The decision cited held that section 7 of the act of May 21, 1920, 41 Stat., 613, did not authorize transfers from the appropriation contained in the act of May 11, 1922, 42 Stat., 507, for the purpose of helping påy overhead or general expenses and salaries in other departments, bureaus, or offices on account of the mere cooperation of said departments, bureaus, or offices with the United States Veterans' Bureau. It states the correct rule where the officers whose travel is involved are not detailed for duty to the Veterans' Bureau. That decision, however, has no application to the traveling expenses or mileage of an officer of the Army, Navy, or United States Public Health Service lawfully detailed to the Veterans' Bureau and traveling under a proper order of the director on the business of the Veterans' Bureau. As to this latter character of travel see 2 Comp. Gen., 373, and answer to question 1, herein.
4. The further question arises, does the decision of December 11, 1922, refer to all travel of the commissioned personnel, as well as travel on change of station ?
The principle expressed in the decision mentioned is regarded as applying not only to the officers of the branches in question when changing station pursuant to a detail with the United States Veterans' Bureau under authority of law for duty strictly on bureau business but also to all official travel on bureau business required of them while serving under detail with the bureau.
USE OF APPROPRIATIONS FOR REPAIRING ROADS.
That portion of the appropriation for the repair of roadways to national
cemeteries, act of June 30, 1922, 42 Stat., 756, intended originally to cover the repair of a certain bridge, is not available for the removal of such
bridge upon abandonment of that particular road. Comptroller General McCarl to the Secretary of War, April 11, 1923:
I have your letter of March 24, 1923, requesting decision whether the appropriation “ Repairing roads to national cemeteries, 1923,” is available for the tearing down and removal of an old abandoned bridge over the Bayou Grande, Fla.
It appears that the bridge in question formerly formed a part of the roadway leading to Barrancas National Cemetery and the naval air station at Pensacola, Fla., and that in 1922 the Navy Department