AnCon09 Travel Policy

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AnCon09 Travel Policy

  1. 1. FEDERAL TRAVEL POLICY Presented by Queenie Cox March 01, 2009 1
  2. 2. Objective The overall objective of this session is to provide you a “brief” overview on Federal government travel policy. So, let’s get started! March 01, 2009 2
  3. 3. Federal travel policy is based on various laws March 01, 2009 3
  4. 4. Laws & Regulations Public Law 105-264  ◦ The Travel and Transportation Reform Act (TTRA) of 1998 mandates that federal employees use the government contractor-issued travel charge card for all payments of expenses related to official government travel unless an exemption has been granted. Public Law 109-115  ◦ Section 846 of the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 1006 requires each Executive department and agency to “evaluate the credit worthiness of an individual before issuing the individual government travel charge card.” March 01, 2009 4
  5. 5. Federal Travel Regulations 41 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) is the regulation that implements statutory requirements and policies for travel by Federal civilian employees. Most common name for 41 CFR is the Federal Travel Regulations (FTR). Agency responsibilities are contained in Subchapter D for Chapter 301 (TDY Allowances) March 01, 2009 5
  6. 6. Joint Travel Regulations (JTR) The governing regulations for OSD and Defense Agency employees. The JTR is guided by the FTR and based on the same civilian governing statutes, regulations and March 01, 2009 6
  7. 7. JTR Regulations Federal Travel Regulation (FTR), published by GSA (41 CFR  300-304); the Department of State Standardized Regulations (DSSR) for Government Civilians in Foreign Areas, issued by State Department; and regulations published by the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) (CFR, title 5); The United States Code, primarily sections found in title 5  (especially chapter 57, concerning allowances for travel, transportation, and subsistence) and title 10;  Executive Orders, General Services Administration (GSA)  Commuted Rate Schedule, and DoD directives;and Decisions of the U.S. Comptroller General (GAO), the  Civilian Board of Contract Appeals (formerly GSA Board of March 01, 2009 7
  8. 8. Joint Federal Travel Regulation (JFTR) The governing regulations for uniformed personnel March 01, 2009 8
  9. 9. JFTR difference between the JTR & FTR AO may waive the rule to reimburse a traveler in  excess of a roundtrip taxi fare when TDY is extended unexpectantly. Travelers under the FTR may not be reimbursed. JFTR travelers may be directed to certain lodging  whereas, FTR and JTR travelers may not. However, FTR and JTR travelers are “encouraged” to use government quarters and/or FedRooms. Note: JTR travelers may be required to use March 01, 2009 9
  10. 10. Prudent Rule and Federal Government Standard Federal employees and those who are traveling on behalf of the Federal government must exercise the same care in incurring expenses that a prudent person would exercise if March 01, 2009 10
  11. 11. Allowable Expenses Generally, individuals traveling on official  business on behalf of the government may be provided and reimbursed for travel allowances and expenses. The government may pay only those expenses  essential to the transaction of official business. Individuals must be in a travel status in order  to be entitled to allowances and expenses. March 01, 2009 11
  12. 12. Advance Authorization to Travel Travelers must have written or electronic authorization  in advance of incurring any travel expense. The exception is if it is not practicable or possible to obtain such authorization prior to travel. In that case, the travel may be approved after-the-fact. IMPORTANT NOTE Written or electronic advance authorization is required  for: ◦ Use of reduced fares for group or charter arrangements; ◦ Payment of a reduced per diem rate; ◦ Acceptance of payment from a non-Federal source for travel March 01, 2009 12
  13. 13. Specific Authorization or Prior Use of travel above coach-class;  Use of extra fare trains;  Actual expenses;  Exemption of a traveler from using a  Government contractor-issued travel charge card; Request for disability or special needs;  A rest stop en route or rest period at TDY  location before reporting for duty; March 01, 2009 13
  14. 14. Con’t Travel by ship;  Use of a Government aircraft;  Travel expenses related to emergency travel;  Travel expenses related to travel to a foreign  area; and Transportation expenses related to threatened  law enforcement/investigative employees and members of their families. March 01, 2009 14
  15. 15. Travel Status Travelers must be in a travel status more than  12 hours in order to be paid per diem. Travelers cannot circumvent this requirement by taking a longer route to an assignment, even if done inadvertently. For less than 12-hours, the traveler is entitled  to transportation costs to and from the TDY location. March 01, 2009 15
  16. 16. Travel more than 12-hours When travel is more than 12-hours but less than  24-hours, your allowance is 75% of the applicable M&IE rate. If overnight lodging is required, reimbursement will be for actual lodging costs not to exceed the maximum lodging rate for the TDY location. When travel is 24-hours or more, on the day of  departure you will receive 75% of the applicable M&IE rate; full days you will receive 100% of the applicable M&IE rate; and on the last day of travel, March 01, 2009 16
  17. 17. Transportation Overall, a traveler’s reimbursement will be limited to the cost of travel by a direct route or on an uninterrupted route. Additional costs incurred for traveling an indirect route such as an unofficial stop or a stopover for personal reasons that exceeds 4 hours or causes a through fare to become a point-to- point fare by delaying the stopover for personal reasons will be the responsibility of the traveler. March 01, 2009 17
  18. 18. Per Diem Expenses Lodging plus  ◦ Actual lodging costs not to exceed the maximum lodging rate Actual  ◦ Actual expense reimbursement Per diem  Reduced per diem or flat rate  March 01, 2009 18
  19. 19. ETS Travelers are required to use the agency’s ETS and its component units for all travel arrangements. Exceptions to this requirement are: ◦ Lodging reservations for conferences; ◦ OCONUS travel; ◦ Arrangements made by a non-Federal source, delegation or another agency; ◦ Agency head exempts certain types of travel arrangements; and March 01, 2009 19
  20. 20. Accommodated TMCs Agencies are not required to use the  authorized vendor’s embedded TMC. Travel Services Solutions Schedule is available  to agencies as a part of the ETS one stop shopping initiative and may be integrated with ETS. March 01, 2009 20
  21. 21. Travel Charge Card Travelers are required to use a Government  contractor-issued travel charge card for all travel related expenses unless they have an exemption. For IBAs, travelers must provide a tax exemption  certificate to lodging vendors to exclude state and local taxes from their hotel bills. Special cardholders whose account contains a “9”  in the account number’s sixth position, is actually using the agency’s CBA and must ensure the vendor does not charge state and local taxes March 01, 2009 21
  22. 22. Travel Charge Card con’t All cardholders and approving/certifying  officials must receive general and refresher training on the government charge card; Personal credit cards shall not be used to  purchase a transportation ticket for official Government travel; Split disbursement and salary offset are  mandatory IAW Appendix B; and Contractors are not authorized to use contract  March 01, 2009 22
  23. 23. Other Mandatory Travel City Pair Program  ◦ Mandatory users of GSA’s city pair contract must use the contract carrier unless the traveler has an approved exemption. Personal travel shall not be used for any leg of FedRooms  ◦ Travelers must give first consideration to the commercial lodging facilities contracted by GSA under the FedRooms lodging program that meet the fire safety requirements unless one or more conditions stated in 41 CFR 301-50.8 exists. Car Rental  ◦ When authorized to use a rental vehicle , travelers must rent a vehicle from a vendor that participates in the Surface Deployment and Distribution Command (SDDC) Government Car Rental Agreement unless the travel is OCONUS and no agreement is in March 01, 2009 23
  24. 24. Exceptions to Policy City Pair Program  Lodging  Credit card  March 01, 2009 24
  25. 25. Non-Contract Carrier Exception Space on a scheduled contract flight is not available in time to accomplish the purpose of  your travel, or use of contract service would require you to incur unnecessary overnight lodging costs which would increase the total cost of the trip; The contractor’s flight schedule is inconsistent with explicit policies of your Federal  department or agency with regard to scheduling travel during normal working hours; A non-contract carrier offers a lower fare to the general public that, if used, will result in  a lower total trip cost to the Government (the combined costs of transportation, lodging, meals, and related expenses considered). Note: This exception does not apply if the contract carrier offers the same or lower fare and has seats available at that fare, or if the fare offered by the non-contract carrier is restricted to Government and military travelers performing official business and may be purchased only with a contractor-issued charge card, centrally billed account (e.g., YDG, MDG, QDG, VDG, and similar fares) or GTR where the two previous options are not available; Cost effective rail service is available and is consistent with mission requirements; or  Smoking is permitted on the contract air carrier and the nonsmoking section of the  contract aircraft is not acceptable to you. 41 CFR 301-10.107 March 01, 2009 25
  26. 26. FedRooms Exception “(i) An FedRooms facility is not available at the location you need (e.g.,  there are no FedRooms facilities within a reasonable proximity of your temporary duty station, or there are no vacancies at the FedRooms facilities at that location). (Your agency’s TMS or E-Gov Travel Service (ETS) must provide you with a list of alternative facilities that meet the fire safety requirements of the Act). (ii) Your agency has other contractual arrangements with commercial  lodging facilities that meet the FEMA fire safety requirements at a lower cost than FedRooms properties. (iii) Your agency determines on an individual case-by-case basis that it is  not practical to use FedRooms facilities to meet mission requirements. (iv) You are attending a conference with prearranged lodging  accommodations and are required to book lodging directly with the lodging facility. (v) Your travel is OCONUS.”  41 CFR XXX March 01, 2009 26
  27. 27. Credit Card Exception Travelers are required to use a Government  contractor-issued travel charge card for all related expenses unless they have an exemption. Agency head may exempt a traveler from  using a Government contractor-issued travel charge card; however, the Administrator of General Services (GSA) must be notified of the reason for the exemption. March 01, 2009 27
  28. 28. Training & Communications Training and communicating with travelers is vital Develop a robust training program  ◦ Semi-formal ◦ Brown bag lunch sessions ◦ Refresher training Implement various media to communicate with travelers  and approving officials ◦ Newsletters ◦ Websites ◦ E-mail Provide incentives for attending training  March 01, 2009 28
  29. 29. Thinking about a question? Ask me now! March 01, 2009 29
  30. 30. Thank You! Queenie Cox  queenecox@aol.com  WO-MEN Travel Professionals  www.wo-men-travelprofessionals.org  March 01, 2009 30

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