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TRAVELING EXPENSES.

An employee of ihe immigration ice stationed at Richford, Vt., who

was detailed, while in Boston on leave of absence, to temporary duty in said last-named city, is entitled at the expiration of such detail to reim' ursement of traveling expenses in returning to his regular station at Richford, Vt.

(Comptroller Tracewell to W. L. Soleau, disbursing clerk, De

partment of Commerce and Labor, May 26, 1905.) In your communication of May 22, 1905, you request my decision of a question which you therein present as follows:

“The voucher submitted by John G. Sullivan, stenographer in the immigration service, stationed at Richford, Vermont, in the sum of twenty-five and twenty-one one-hundredths dollars ($25.21), on account of actual necessary expenses while serving on detail as stenographer in the office of the commissioner of immigration at the port of Boston, and his actual necessary traveling expenses from Boston, Mass., to Richford, Vt., his official station, is transmitted herewith for your decision of the question whether I am authorized to pay these expenses.

- Mr. Sullivan at the time of detail was on leave of absence at Boston, and was ordered to report to the commissioner of immigration at the port of Boston, at the expiration of his leave, for temporary duty. The Commissioner-General of Immigration states that at the time of detail if Mr. Sullivan had not been at Boston it would have been necessary to detail a stenographer from Richford, Vt., for the temporary duty at Boston, which would have necessitated the payment of the expenses of the detail while in Boston and also the travel from Richford, Vt., to Boston, Mass., and return."

It is the personal duty of an officer or employee who is ah. 'sent on leave of absence to return to the place of his official duty at the expiration of his leave of absence, and he is not entitled to reimbursement for his traveling expenses in returning thereto. (3 Comp. Dec., 170; 4 id., 528.) In the case presented by you the place of official duty of the employee had been changed to the place where he happened to be at the expiration of his leave of absence, and no travel was required to be performed by him in proceeding thereto. Subsequently his place of duty was again changed and he was required to return to bis original station. I think the travel performed by him in so returning to his original station must be regarded

28007– Vol. 11-05—45

as travel on official business and that he is entitled to reimbursement of the actual and necessary expenses incurred by him in performing the travel.

I have therefore to advise you that, if otherwise correct, you are authorized to pay the voucher transmitted by you.

ESTABLISHMENT BY THE PUBLIC HEALTH AND MARINE-HOSPITAL SERVICE OF A PURVEYING DEPOT IN THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA.

The duties of the employees of the purveying depot of the Public Health

and Marine-Hospital Service being separate and distinct from the duties of the employees of the office of the Surgeon-General of said service, the establishment of such a depot in the District of Columbia and the payment of the employees thereof out of the appropriation for the Public Health and Marine-Hospital Service is not prohibited by the act of August 5, 1882, and is therefore authorized.

(Comptroller Tracewell to the Secretary of the Treasury, May

29, 1905.) In your communication of May 22, 1905, you request my decision of a question which you therein present as follows:

“I herewith submit for your decision the question raised in the annexed papers, viz, the legality of the transfer of the employees named of the purveying depot at New York to the new depot to be established at Washington, D. C., and the payment of their salaries as therein stated if so transferred. The authority for the change of location of this depot from New York to Washington is herewith transmitted. I will be obliged for a decision of this matter at your earliest convenience. If the change is authorized and the payments can be made it is important that the change be made by the 1st of June.”

From the papers accompanying your communication it appears that in 1872 a division having charge of the purchase and issue of medical and other supplies was established in the office of the Surgeon-General of the Marine-Hospital Service; and that upon recommendation of the Surgeon-General, dated May 18, 1899, and approved by the Secretary of the Treasury, said division, designated the purveying division, was transferred to New York City and established there as a purveying depot.

It is further understood that the salaries of the employees in the office of the Surgeon-General who were employed in connection with the purchase and issue of such supplies were paid from the appropriation for that office, in which appropriation they were specifically provided for; but that after such transfer the salaries of the employees of the purveying depot at New York City were paid from the general appropriation for the Marine-Hospital Service.

It also appears from your communication that it is in contemplation to transfer the said purveying depot from New York City to Washington, D. C., and that the particular question upon which you desire my decision is whether payment of the salaries of the officers and employees of the purveying depot can lawfully be made from the general appropriation for the Public Health and Marine-Hospital Service after the depot has been so transferred.

But, from the records of this Department, it appears that only one employee of the Office of Surgeon-General of MarineHospital Service, namely, Henry Gahn, pharmacist, at $1,000 per annum, was transferred to New York, and that another person was employed as pharmacist in his place. It further appears that there are at present employed at the purveying depot at New York 1 pharmacist, 1 clerk, 6 attendants, and 4 laborers, making an aggregate of 12 employees.

Section 4 of the act of August 5, 1882 (22 Stat., 255), contains the following provisions, which for convenience are herein divided into two paragraphs:

“That no civil officer, clerk, draughtsman, copyist, messenger, assistant messenger, mechanic, watchman, laborer, or other employee shall, after the first day of October next, be employed in any of the Executive Departments, or subordinate bureaus or offices thereof at the seat of government, except only at such rates and in such numbers, respectively, as may be specifically appropriated for by Congress for such clerical and other personal services for each fiscal year;"

"and no civil officer, clerk, draughtsman, copyist, messenger, assistant messenger, mechanic, watchman, laborer, or other employee shall hereafter be employed at the seat of government in any Executive Department or subordinate bureau or office thereof or be paid from any appropriation made for contingent expenses, or for any specific or general purpose, unless such employment is authorized and payment therefor specifically provided in the law granting the appro

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priation, and then only for services actually rendered in connection with and for the purposes of the appropriation from which payment is made, and at the rate of compensation usual and proper for such services.

The provisions in the first paragraph prohibit the emplosment of any civil officer or employee in any of the Executive Departments or bureaus thereof at the seat of government, except () at such rates and () in such numbers (c) as may be specifically appropriated for by Congress for such clerical and other personal services.

The provisions in the second paragraph relate to the same classes of officers and employees and prohibit their employment at the seat of government in any of said Departmenis or bureaus under any appropriation for contingent expenses, or for any specific or general purpose, unless (a) their employment is authorized and (6) payment therefor specifically provided (c) in the law granting the appropriation, and then only for services (d) actually rendered in connection with and for the purpose of the appropriation from which payment is made, and (e) at the rates of compensation usual and proper for such services.

From this analysis of these provisions I think it is clear that those in the first paragraph are intended to prohibit the employment in any Department or bureau thereof at Washington of any civil officer or employee other than those specifically provided for by number and at rates of pay therein fixed in the regular annual appropriations for those Departments. I think it also clear therefrom that the provisions in the second paragraph prohibit the employment in any such Department or bureau of any civil officer or employee under any general authority contained in an appropriation for contingent expenses or from any general or specific appropriation other than such regular annual appropriations specifically providing for officers and employees in such Departments and bureaus thereof, unless such employment is authorized and payment therefor specifically provided in such other appropriation, and then only for services actually rendered in connection with and for the purposes of the appropriation from which payment is made.

These latter provisions must, therefore, be construed as providing for an exception to the general prohibition con

tained in the provisions in the first paragraph, and as impliedly authorizing the employment of persons not specifically appropriated for in the regular annual appropriations made by Congress for such clerical or other personal services, in cases where their employment is authorized and payment therefor specifically provided in other appropriations.

The title “Marine-Hospital Service” was changed by the act of July 1, 1902 (32 Stat., 712), to “Public Health and Marine-Hospital Service of the United States."

Appropriations are made annually for the office of SurgeonGeneral of Public Health and Marine-Hospital Service under the heading "Treasury Department," as one of the offices of that Department, and specific salaries are provided therein for specified officers and employees. Prior to the establisbment of the purveying depot at New York this office was charged with the duty of purchasing and issuing medical and other supplies for the Marine-Hospital Service. (See Regulations of the Marine-Hospital Service of 1897, paragraphs 551, 552, 554, 565, 566, 571, 575, 579, and 590.) If the employees in that office engaged upon this work at the time the purveying depot was established in New York had been transferred to another building in the District of Columbia and designated as a purveying depot, the character of their employment as employees of that office would not thereby have been changed, and the employment of additional employees for the same kind of work would not have been authorized by the appropriation for the office. And I think the employment under and payment from the general appropriation for the Marine-Hospital Service of such additional employees would have been prohibited by the provisions in section 4 of the act of August 5, 1882, supra. I also think that the transfer of such employees to New York City and the subsequent retransfer of them to the District of Columbia would not have changed their legal status as employees of that office. It is true that the employment under and payment from the general appropriation for the Marine-Hospital Service of additional employees in New York City was not prohibited by the provisions of that section, because those provisions apply only to additional employees employed in “the Executive Departments, or subordinate bureaus or offices thereof at the seat of Government.” But if such addi

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