« ForrigeFortsett »
Regulations, 1913. Under this contract the enlisted man agrees to serve for the period and under the conditions, prescribed by law, unless sooner discharged by proper authority; and also agrees to accept from the United States such bounty, pay, rations, and clothing as are or may be established by law.
The above-quoted provisions of the Army appropriation act of June 30, 1921, became effective on June 30, 1921, and do not disturb any rights as to the enlistment allowance acquired by a soldier under an enlistment accomplished in period from June 4, 1920, to June 29, 1921.
This coincides with the construction given section 9 of the act of August 3, 1861, 12 Stat., 288, which “abolished” the bounty for enlistments and reenlistments at remote and distant stations authorized by section 3 of the act of June 17, 1850, 9 Stat., 439. The act of 1850 provided that the bounty or allowance for such enlistments should be paid in unequal instalments at the end of each year's service, so that the several amounts shall annually increase, and the largest paid at the expiration of the enlistment. In section 331, vol. 1, Digest Second Comp. Dec., it is said:
Any sold er entitled on the 2nd of August, 1861, to bounty for reenlistment at a remote and distant station under the law of June 17, 1850, did not lose his right to that bounty by the enactment of the law of August 3, 1861, abolishing such bounty.
Under that decision and decisions in sections 341 to 344, vol. 3, Digest Second Comp. Dec., in cases of men so enlisted prior to August 3, 1861, payment of the bounty was made in installments for their services after August 3, 1861, until date of discharge from such enlistment.
Your specific question is answered as follows:
Said act of June 30, 1921, operates only with respect to men who enlist or reenlist on or after June 30, 1921, and does not preclude payment (from the appropriation “Pay of the Army" available) of the enlistment allowance to men lawfully enlisted or reenlisted in period from June 4, 1920, to June 29, 1921, for a term of three years, and who have been or hereafter will be honorably discharged and have not yet been paid such allowance. When such men were enlisted or reenlisted there was in full force and effect a statute which declared that such enlistment allowanceshall be paid to every soldier who enlists or reenlists for a period of three years, payment of the enlistment allowance for original enlistment to be deferred until honorable discharge. This emphatic declaration must be regarded as part of the contract entered into when the enlistment or reenlistment was accomplished, and that part of the contract is fulfilled when at the time of his honorable discharge from an original enlistment the soldier is paid the allowance.
PUBLIC HEALTH SERVICE-REPAIR AND PRESERVATION OF
Funds appropriated by the act of March 4, 1921, 41 Stat., 1368, for the repair
and preservation of Public Health Service stations, hospitals, etc., are available for repair and preservation of such buildings which are under control of the Treasury Department, provided their repair and preservation is not specifically the obligation of others, although the lands on which the buildings are situated may not be under control of the Treasury Department.
Comptroller General McCarl to the Secretary of the Treasury, July 6, 1921:
I have your letter of June 24, 1921, requesting decision whether the appropriation under the act of March 4, 1921, 41 Stat., 1368, for the repair and preservation of Public Health Service stations, quarantine stations, etc., “is available for Public Health Service hospitals which may be owned by the United States, but not on lands under the control of the Treasury Department.”
The appropriation provides: For repairs and preservation of all completed and occupied public buildings and the grounds thereof, under the control of the Treasury Department, and in a proviso thereto authorizes
That of the sum herein appropriated not exceeding $200,000 may be used for the repair and preservation of Public Health Service hospitals, quarantine stations and completed and occupied outbuildings owned by the Government and under the control of the Treasury Department.
Whether because the first provision provides the appropriation for public buildings and the grounds thereof requires that both the buildings and grounds shall be under the control of the Treasury Department it is unnecessary in the present case to determine. The proviso authorizing the use for the repair and preservation of Public Health Service hospitals, etc., makes no reference therein to grounds. If I am to understand from the submission that Public Health Service hospitals which are stated to be owned by the United States are under the control of the Treasury Department, and their repair and preservation is not specifically the obligation of others, I am of the opinion the appropriation thus provided is available for repair and preservation of such buildings, although the lands may not be under the control of the Treasury Department.
DAMAGES TO PERSONS AND PROPERTY BY POST OFFICE DEPART
The act of June 16, 1921, 42 Stat., 63, authorizing the Postmaster General to
adjust and settle claims not in excess of $500 in amount for damages to persons and property by or through the operation of the Post Office Department, and appropriating $35,000 for the fiscal year 1922 to carry out the provisions thereof, was intended to relate only to claims arising on or after July 1, 1921
Comptroller General McCarl to the Postmaster General, July 7, 1921:
I have your letter of June 27, 1921, as follows:
The act approved June 16, 1921, 42 Stat., 63, contains the following pro vision:
" When any damage is done to person or property by or through the operation of the Post Office Department in any branch of its service and such damage is found by the Postmaster General upon investigation to be a proper charge against the United States, the Postmaster General is hereby invested with power to adjust and settle any claim for such damage when his award for such damage in any case does not exceed $500; and the sum of $35,000 is hereby appropriated for the fiscal year 1922 to carry out the provisions of this paragraph."
Your decision is requested as to whether under this law this Department may entertain claims for damages which occur prior to July 1, 1921.
I find nothing in the law in question to indicate that it was intended to have a retroactive effect. Therefore, in accordance with wellrecognized principles of statutory construction it must be held that the provision quoted by you was intended to relate only to claims arising on or after July 1, 1921.
The question submitted is answered in the negative.
EXTENSION OF AVAILABILITY OF APPROPRIATIONS.
Unexpended balances of appropriations for armament of fortifications and
other works of defense, etc., which were required by the act of March 3, 1919, 40 Stat., 1309, to be covered into the Treasury and carried to the surplus fund June 30, 1921, come within the provisions of the act of June 16, 1921, 42 Stat., 63, extending the availability until June 30, 1922, of unexpended balances of appropriations chargeable with the settlement of claims resulting from the suspension or termination of contracts or other procurement obligations of the War Department consequent upon the sus. pension of hostilities and with adjustment of claims under the Dent Act dated March 2, 1919, 41 Stat., 1272.
Comptroller General McCarl to the Secretary of the Treasury, July 7, 1921:
I have your letter of June 21, 1921, and also reference in connection therewith of a communication from the Secretary of War of June 27, 1921, as to whether appropriations for armament of fortifications and other works of defense, etc., come within the provisions of the deficiency act of June 16, 1921, 42 Stat., 63, authorizing certain appropriations to remain upon the books of the Treasury and be available until June 30, 1922, and in connection therewith making $250,000 available for such personal services as in the discretion of the Secretary of War are necessary.
The provision appears in the deficiency act approved June 16, 1921, as follows:
Unexpended balances : Such amounts of the unexpended balances of the appropriations chargeable with the settlement of claims resulting from the suspension or termination of contracts or other procurement obligations of the War Depart. ment, consequent upon the suspension of hostilities, and with the adjustment of claims under the Act entitled "An Act to provide relief in cases of contracts connected with the prosecution of the war, and for other purposes," approved March 2, 1919, shall remain upon the books of the Treasury to the credit of the respective
appropriations and be available for similar purposes until June 30, 1922, and of said. amounts, not to exceed $250,000 shall also be available for such personal services as in the discretion of the Secretary of War are necessary to properly protect the interests of the United States in making such settlements and adjustments : Provided, That no part of said amounts shall be used to pay any claims arising out of any contract or other obligation unless such contract or obligation was entered into subsequently to April 6, 1917, and prior to November 12, 1918.
The act of June 5, 1920, 41 Stat., 1026, specifically makes certain balances of 1918 appropriations available to June 30, 1921, in connection with settlements under authority of the act of March 2, 1919, 40 Stat., 1272, and there is no question that the act of June 16, 1921, extends the availability of the proper balances to June 30, 1922. But the act of March 3, 1919, 40 Stat., 1309, directs:
That appropriations for fortifications and other works of defense, for the armament thereof, and for the procurement of heavy ordnance for trial and service, heretofore made in fortifications or sundry civil appropriation acts, shall not be available for obligation after June 30, 1920, and all unexpended balances of such appropriations which remain upon the books of the Treasury Department on June 30, 1921, shall be covered into the Treasury and carried to the surplus fund.
The appropriations coming under this act of March 3, 1919, have also been required in connection with settlements under the act of March 2, 1919, and the question which thus arises is whether the authority in the act of June 16, 1921, is sufficient to extend these appropriations beyond the limit fixed by the act of March 3, 1919, for going to the surplus fund. The act of June 16, 1921, does not name any particular appropriations, and I am constrained to answer in the affirmative as to the armament, etc., appropriations to the extent that balances are available for the purposes indicated in the act of June 16, 1921.
Further question arises as to the proper procedure in connection with the act of June 16, 1921, so as to give effect to the purposes to which the unexpended balances are authorized to be applied. If all balances of appropriations involved are carried to the surplus fund, it would require the administrative office to transmit its settlements to the General Accounting Office for settlement and certification and then in each case the necessary amount be raised upon the books of the Treasury Department to make the payment. I understand the past procedure has been to have the proper balances of the appropriations appear upon the books of the Treasury Department and have the payments made by disbursing officers, and accordingly that procedure may continue to be followed.
The further question is also presented whether the authority to use $250,000 for personal services would authorize making available some one of the appropriations involved and specifically designate it to distinguish it from other funds upon the books of the Treasury Department. This I answer in the affirmative as the practicable method, the title of the funds thus inade available to be designated by the Treasury Department.
INDUSTRIAL REHABILITATION-FEDERAL AID TO STATES.
Federal aid to a State for industrial rehabilitation to the extent of an amount
equal to that expended by the State for the same purpose, as authorized by the act of June 2, 1920, 41 Stat., 735, is conditioned upon the State's acceptance of the terms of the act in the manner and within the time prescribed, and the provision in the act fixing a time limit for acceptance “ until the legislature of such State meets in due course and has been in session 60 days," must be construed as setting a limitation of 60 days after it first convenes, whether or not it remains in session 60 days, within which the legislature must accept and comply with the terms of the act if it is to participate in the benefits of the act.
Comptroller General McCarl to the Chairman, Federal Board for Vocational Education, July 8, 1921:
I have your letter of June 22, 1921, addressed to the Comptroller of the Treasury, as follows:
The provisions of the Industrial Rehabilitation Act, approved June 2, 1920, 41 Stat., 735, were accepted for the State of South Carolina by the Governor on September 30, 1920, in accordance with the following provision contained in Section 3 of the Act.
“In any State the legislature of which does not meet in regular session between the date of the passage of this act and December 30, 1920, if the governor of that state shall accept the provisions of this act, such state shall be entitled to the benefits of this act until the legislature of such state meets in due course and has been in session sixty days."
The legislature of the State convened on January 11, 1920, and subsequently, on March 5th, adjourned without accepting the provisions of the Industrial Rehabilitation Act, having been in session less than sixty days.
In view of the foregoing your decision is respectfully requested as to whether or not the Federal Board for Vocational Education may recognize the State of South Carolina as still entitled to the benefits of the appropriation provided by said act.
Section 1 of the act from which you quote makes annual appropriation for the use of the several States in cooperative vocational rehabilitation work, the several appropriations to be allotted to the States upon the basis of their several populations. These appropriations are made upon certain conditions imposed upon the States by the act, among which is the condition that for each dollar of Federal money expended there shall be expended by the State at least an equal amount for the same purpose.
Section 3 of the act also provides that in order to secure the benefit of these appropriations the State shall, through its legislative authority, accept the provisions of the act and comply with certain other requirements set forth in that section. That portion of the section which you quote makes temporary provision for participation by States in the benefits of the act until their legislatures shall have had an opportunity to accept the provisions of the act and comply with its requirements. It contemplates that a State shall have not exceeding 60 days after its legislature meets in which to accept the provisions of the act. It does not contemplate that a State may continue to enjoy indefinitely the benefits of the statute without accepting its