Assignment and Use of Motor Vehicles for Official FSIS Business - Revision 6
This directive sets out the procedures regarding the assignment and use of motor vehicles for official business. FSIS is reissuing this directive to replace the use of FSIS Form 2450-8 with Form AD-728 when employees request to store a vehicle at or near his or her home (see Chapter IV paragraph IV).
- Procedures for operating a GOV
- Policy and procedures for storing a GOV at an employee's residence
- Procedures for leasing General Services Administration (GSA) motor vehicles
FSIS Directive 2450.1 Revision 5, Assignment and Use of Motor Vehicles for Official FSIS Business, 1/16/14
When FSIS personnel travel on official business, they are to use public transportation when available and practical. FSIS personnel may use GOVs when required on a continuing basis for extensive travel. FSIS employees may also use a privately-owned vehicle (POVs) when authorized or approved for official business at the rates and conditions specified in FSIS Directive 3800.2, Reimbursement for Use of Privately Owned Vehicles or in the most current, applicable FSIS notice.
THE ANNUAL HIGH-MILEAGE AMOUNT
- Drivers who want to use a GOV instead of his or her POV need to meet the high-mileage amount that is announced annually in an FSIS notice.
- The high-mileage figure is based solely on a comparison, using the mileage figure, between the costs for operating a GOV and the costs for reimbursable POV mileage. The GOV cost can be obtained by calculating the GSA lease vehicle monthly rate plus the current mileage rate for a GSA compact sedan. When it becomes more expensive to drive the POV than the GOV, the corresponding mileage figure, rounded to the nearest hundred, becomes the high-mileage figure for that fiscal year.
- An employee on official travel who is expected to drive the monthly mileage indicated in the annual high-mileage notice is to annually state in writing whether or not he or she will drive a GOV or POV. Supervisory personnel determine the following:
- The mileage driven during the past fiscal year. This amount determines the prime factor in making this forecast, unless circumstances change.
- The number of miles the employee is expected to drive for the coming fiscal year. This amount determines whether an employee is a high-mileage driver.
- Applicable miles driven include:
- Official work assignment mileage;
- Reimbursable home-to-home mileage;
- Union officials’ representational activities mileage; and
- Attendance at work unit or district meetings and relief assignments mileage.
B. By May 15 of each year, appropriate supervisory officials are to identify expected high-mileage drivers under their supervision and to obtain written commitments from them for the coming fiscal year. The supervisor is to approve the commitment before the last five working days of the month. If the supervisory approval takes longer than five working days the maximum reimbursement will begin on the first day of the month following the date of the driver’s submission and continue until a vehicle is provided to the employee. Low-mileage drivers are not required to file commitments. Supervisors are to complete FSIS Form 3800-2, Annual Notice to High-Mileage Drivers, and maintain the completed form in a case file for individual travelers.
C. The commitment is the basis for reimbursement to the employee for the entire fiscal year. If an employee makes a commitment to drive his or her POV and does not drive the mileage required to be considered a high-mileage driver, the mileage rate established under the commitment still stands as the rate for the commitment period.
D. An employee can change the annual commitment, or initiate a new one, when a permanent assignment change is expected to increase or decrease the employee’s driving mileage. A permanent change can result from:
- Reassignment to a different duty station; and
- Circumstances that were not contemplated at the time the original commitment was made, including reassignment to a different position at the same duty station and an increase or decrease in the number of establishments covered or a change in the frequency of coverage.
E. An employee driving a POV can request relief from his or her commitment when the price of gasoline rises to be 20 percent more than the prevailing market price at the time the employee made the commitment, or when the mileage rate decreases by more than 20 percent from the rate at the time of the employee’s original commitment. An employee requesting a change under this provision will be provided a GOV as soon as one is available. An employee is to keep the GOV for 12 months from the time received, even if the 12 month period extends into the next fiscal year. Once approved, the employee can claim the current mileage reimbursement rate beginning the first day of the next month and continue until they are provided with a GOV.
F. If an employee’s assignment is considered high-mileage both before and after any of the above changes, the original commitment continues to apply. An employee previously committed to using his or her POV can recommit to use a GOV for a new assignment. An employee using a GOV is to continue using it at the new official duty station, provided the GOV can be relocated without incurring unreasonable expense.
G. If a change in assignment moves the employee into the high-mileage category, the employee is to submit a commitment with an effective date on the first day of the next month. A new commitment is the basis for reimbursement for the remainder of the fiscal year. Such commitments made after March 31 are binding for the next fiscal year as well.
H. If the change in assignment moves the employee out of the high-mileage category, the employee can be released from the initial commitment as of the first of the next month.
I. If for any reason the authorization to operate a GOV is revoked, and the employee is still considered a high-mileage driver, the employee is to fill out a new FSIS Form 3800-2 indicating that he or she will be operating his or her POV at the established POV rate for the remainder of the fiscal year or until the supervisor determines that the employee is no longer prohibited from operating a GOV.
J. The mileage rates are authorized by 41 CFR 301-10.310 and are subject to change each January when the Internal Revenue Service sets the mileage rate for the current tax year, and GSA sets the POV rate. In the event of a mileage rate change after the commitment was submitted, the employee can resubmit a new commitment within 60 days of the notice of the implemented change.
K. If a GOV is requested and becomes available and then refused by the employee, the employee will be responsible to fill out a new high-mileage commitment form stating that he or she will drive his or her POV. The employee will be reimbursed at the current high-mileage POV rate. He or she will not be allowed to request a GOV for a period of 12 months after the refusal of a GOV.
VI. CONDITIONS NECESSARY TO USE GOV
A. The use of a GOV is for official business when determined to be in the Government’s best interest. Official business does not include use for private business, personal errands, or recreation. An employee assigned a motor vehicle on a continuous basis for transportation between several places, required for the performance of his or her duties, is authorized to stop for food at suitable eating places and locations necessary to perform Government business following the Federal Travel Regulation and FSIS Directive 3800.2.
B. No employee is to operate a GOV on a continuous basis unless he or she possesses a valid state driver's license and an operator's authorization. An occasional operator who possesses a valid state, District of Columbia, or Commonwealth operator's license can operate an official vehicle without an operator's authorization.
C. An employee is to obey all motor vehicle traffic laws of the state and local jurisdiction that he or she is assigned. FSIS will hold an employee responsible for any violations of state or local traffic laws. If an employee is fined or penalized for committing an offense while performing his or her official duties, payment is his or her responsibility.
D. An employee is to obey all state and local traffic laws while operating GOVs, including wireless telephone use. A driver is to know the states and local jurisdictions that ban using handheld wireless phones while driving.
E. FSIS strongly discourages using hand-held wireless phones, even with hands-free equipment, while operating a GOV. A driver is to pull safely to the side of the road or a parking area to make or receive a call.
F. Executive Order 13513, Federal Liability – Action Taken Within the Scope of Employment, states that a Federal employee is to not engage in text messaging when driving GOVs or POVs while on official Government business, or to use electronic equipment for text messaging supplied by the Federal Government while driving. Text messaging means reading from or entering data into any handheld or other electronic device, including for the purpose of SMS texting, emailing, instant messaging, obtaining navigational information, or engaging in any other form of electronic data retrieval or electronic data communication.
G. An employee is responsible for daily commuting expenses between home and work.
H. Commuting expenses are paid by the Agency if an employee is engaged in field work, and if paying is approved by the Property Management Branch (PMB). The Agency will also pay commuting expenses when employees are to perform call-back overtime at an official duty station. When an employee has approved home-to-work authorizations on file, he or she is to use his or her POV when working at his or her HQ establishment or official duty station only (see DR 5400- 005, Use of Government Vehicle for Home to Work).
I. An employee can transport other Government employees while on official business. Vehicles can be shared or pooled with other Federal, state, or local Government agencies if:
- Use of the vehicle is more efficient;
- Use of the vehicle is for official purposes only;
- Sharing or pooling does not hamper the performance of assigned official duties;
- Transporting these individuals is definitely and directly related to the operator’s official duties. Transporting private individuals for personal matters is prohibited; and
- The vehicle is equipped with seat belts. Operators and passengers are to wear seat belts while traveling on official business.
J. Each GOV or POV used for official business is to have a Form AD-651, Motor Vehicle Accident Kit- Envelop (Agency owned GOV) or GSA Form 1627, Motor Vehicle Accident Reporting Kit, (GSA leased), a Form SF-91, Motor Vehicle Accident Report, and a Form SF-94, Statement of Witness, in the glove compartment. GSA Form 1627 is proof of insurance for Government-leased vehicles. The AD-651 form is the accident report kit envelope. The SF-91 form is used for accident reporting. The SF-94 form is used to obtain a witness statement.
K. Sharing vehicles within the Agency or with other Federal or state agencies is permitted to consolidate needs and maximize use.
L. Smoking is prohibited in USDA-owned or -leased vehicles per FSIS Directive 2500.2, Smoking Policy. This prohibition applies to all tobacco products.
M. GOVs that come equipped with special features (such as Onstar, XM Onstar, XM radio, or Sirius radio) in the vehicle may require a subscription service once the free trial period ends. FSIS personnel operating these vehicles are prohibited from subscribing to the service using program or personal funds. Utilization of this type of equipment and options is considered personal use of Government equipment.
VII. OBTAINING APPROVAL TO OPERATE A GOV
A. Employees expected to drive the number of miles or more identified as high-mileage for that fiscal year per month are to make a written commitment to drive either a GOV or his or her POV. Commitments for the following fiscal year are due on May 15th of each year. A notice reminding drivers to make their commitments is issued in March each year. “Applicable miles driven” includes “reimbursable home-to-home mileage, mileage for representational activities by union officials, and mileage for attendance at work unit or district meetings and relief assignments” according to FSIS Directive 3800.2. (see Chapter 3 for more details).
B. An employee can request to operate a GOV by completing FSIS Form 2450-5, Request for Authorization to Operate a Government-Owned or -Leased Vehicle, and by submitting the form to his or her supervisor.
C. An employee making such request is to have a valid state driver's license, have a satisfactory driving record, and have identification (e.g., card, badge, or other document) that identifies the driver as either an FSIS employee or an employee working under a cooperative agreement with FSIS.
D. The employee’s supervisor reviews the employee's statements on FSIS Form 2450-5, verifies that the employee possesses a valid state driver's license, and signs FSIS Form 2450-5 if he or she approves. The supervisor is to forward the FSIS Form 2450-5 to the certifying Office of Administrative Services , Property Management Brach (PMB) fleet manager, and retain a copy during the approval process.
E. The PMB fleet manager reviews FSIS Form 2450-5 for completeness and proper signatures and the statements on FSIS Form 2450-5 and determines whether to grant authorization for the employee to operate a GOV. If approved, the PMB fleet manager signs FSIS Form 2450-5, retains the original on file, and returns a copy to the operator.
VIII. VALID PERIOD
A. A general operator's authorization is valid for the time period the operator possesses a valid state driver's license.
B. The employee is responsible for renewing the operator’s authorization ten work days before or after the current valid state driver's license expires, or when he or she has an accident or moving violation after submission of form but before driver’s license expires. The employee is to notify his or her supervisor that he or she possesses a new valid state driver's and is to complete a new FSIS Form 2450-5.
C. A supervisor may grant a temporary operator's authorization for not more than 30 days if the employee is only required to operate a vehicle for 30 days or less, is unexpectedly called upon to operate a vehicle, and has a valid state driver's license. In this instance, FSIS Form 2450-5 is not required.
IX. TRANSFERS OR SEPARATIONS
A. If an employee is transferring to another state, and he or she obtains a valid driver's license for that state, the employee is to forward the new state driver's license number and expiration date, through the supervisor, to the appropriate PMB fleet manager. The PMB fleet manager records the facts pertaining to the operator's authorization held by the employee.
B. If an employee is transferring from one program area to another, he or she is to reapply for authorization.
X. SUPERVISORS’ RESPONSIBILITIES
A. Supervisors of FSIS employees applying for the use of a GOV are to:
- Inform employees about this directive;
- Evaluate requests to store GOVs at the employee's residence. An evaluation is based only on what is beneficial to the Government;
- Report motor vehicle accidents and property damage incidents involving motor vehicles as prescribed in this directive and FSIS Directive 4791.13, Workplace Inspections, and Injury, Illness and Motor Vehicle Incident Reporting;
- Direct employees to have the vehicle serviced at regular intervals in accordance with in this directive;
- Prohibit the use of unsafe or defective vehicles;
- Prohibit the use of vehicles for other than official purposes; and
- Establish prior approval procedures for use of vehicles during irregular hours, weekends, and circumstances where use can create an unfavorable public reaction;
B. Each District Office (DO) or program office is to assign an employee to assist the headquarters fleet manager with the control and management of the vehicles assigned to his or her area.
CHAPTER II - USE OF AGENCY-OWNED OR -LEASED VEHICLES
I. LICENSE PLATES
A. The PMB or the servicing fleet center provides Government license plates for FSIS- owned or - leased vehicles. Mount Government license plates on the front and rear of the vehicle, even if the state where the vehicle is driven requires only one plate.
B. Tags assigned to Agency-owned vehicles are to remain with the vehicle until the vehicle is removed from USDA service. The driver removes the Government license plates and sends them with a completed Form AD-112, Report of Unserviceable, Lost, or Damaged Property, to PMB. PMB returns the tags to UNICOR for destruction.
C. Government license plates assigned to Agency-leased vehicles are to remain with the vehicle to which they are assigned.
D. Unmarked vehicles used for investigative purposes are normally registered in the state where delivery is made.
E. At the time of initial delivery, the dealer or fleet servicing representative can provide temporary state registration and plates. The employee is to take the manufacturer's statement of origin or the vehicle title, and any other documents required for state registration, to the appropriate state motor vehicle department and register the vehicle free of liens.
F. License plates assigned to unmarked vehicles are to comply with the state laws where the vehicle is registered. In many states, the same license plates can be transferred to new vehicles. However, new vehicles have to be re-registered or re-titled.
G. If the license plates are stolen, the employee is to report the loss to the immediate supervisor, and state and local police. Complete Form AD-112, documenting the incident, and forward it to PMB for Agency-owned vehicles. Report all losses of plates on leased vehicles to the assigned FMC.
A. FSIS Directive 3720.1, Federal Tort Claims and FSIS Directive 4900.1, Employee Liability – Action Taken Within the Scope of Employment address instances where an employee performing authorized official business may be found to be acting outside the scope of his or her employment. State law determines what is within the scope of employment, such as the example of an employee commuting between his or her residence and the actual duty point in a GOV. In such cases, an employee could be personally liable for damages resulting from an accident.
B. For complete protection, government, commercial, or POV, an employee using vehicles should assess his or her insurance coverage; decide whether or not they need extra coverage (such as a new use policy or a rider to an existing policy). An employee is not required to purchase additional insurance. FSIS is not authorized to reimburse an employee for the cost of optional insurance.
C. The Government will not pay or reimburse an employee for collision damage waivers or collision damage insurance available in commercial rental contracts for an extra fee. The Agency can receive and settle any claims against an employee for acts occurring within the scope of his or her office or employment. See FSIS Directive 4791.13 and FSIS Directive 4900.1. Collision and comprehensive coverage is included under the Government contract for travel within the United States.
D. The employee can choose to buy full insurance coverage for an extra charge. The employee is not required to purchase additional insurance. The charge for additional insurance is not reimbursable by FSIS. However, the Government will pay for collision insurance when vehicles are rented or leased for official travel in foreign countries.
III. EMPLOYEE DAY-TO-DAY RESPONSIBILITIES
A. An employee using GOVs is to:
- Use GOVs for official purposes only;
- Operate the motor vehicle in a safe manner;
- Possess and carry a valid state driver's license and obtain authorization;
- Protect the vehicle, key, and credit cards against theft and misuse;
- Park or store the vehicle in a manner that reasonably protects it from theft or damage;
- Lock the unattended motor vehicle, except when fire regulations or other directives prohibit locking vehicles in closed buildings or enclosures;
- Remove the ignition key and credit card from the vehicle when the vehicle is left unattended; and
- Remove the credit card from the vehicle when the vehicle is left for repairs or service.
B. Read the instructions printed on Form AD-651 or GSA Form 1627 on motor vehicle accident reporting. An employee is to report motor vehicle accidents and property damage incidents involving motor vehicles to his or her supervisor following the instructions in Part Three, subparagraph VII. and FSIS Directive 4791.13.
D. An employee is not to use or appear to use assigned vehicles for unofficial purposes.
IV. PURCHASING GAS
A. An employee is to purchase gasoline for official GOVs from the oil companies listed in the GSA Driver’s Guide or at http://www.wrightexpress.com/accepting-locations?id=search&kw=locations. A copy of this guide is included in the operator’s packet, furnished with each vehicle, and can be obtained from the GSA servicing representative from the servicing fleet center.
B. An employees is to use ethanol-blended fuels (E-85) in Agency-owned or -leased bi-fuel vehicles when available for purchase in the state where the vehicle is located. Check (E-85) fuel availability by contacting the GSA servicing representative from the servicing fleet center, or at: http://www.afdc.energy.gov/locator/stations/ or http://www.e85fuel.com.
C. An employee is to use self-service pumps for refueling GOVs, unlesss:
- No self-service pumps are available at a service station;
- The employee operating the vehicle has physical limitations; or
- There are severe weather conditions.
V. REPORTING MONTHLY MILEAGE
A. Reporting mileage is mandatory and essential to having an effective billing process for GSAleased vehicles. All personnel driving GOVs are to report his or her monthly mileage to GSA by the 20th day of the month using the Get Odometer Reading for the Pump (GORP).
B. GORP is a program that GSA has in place in specific Fleet Management Centers (FMCs) across the United States. On the 20th day of each month, GSA collects mileage from the latest odometer reading entered at the pump when fuel was purchased. The employee is to enter the correct odometer reading when fuel is purchased for this program to work properly.
C. If the employee operating the vehicle receives a GORP exception report, he or she will need to report his or her mileage using Mileage Express. Use the following Web site to sign on: http://drivethru.fas.gsa.gov/drivethru/drivethru. Select Mileage Express from the application menu. Provide the customer number and the four-digit access number. The access number consists of one alpha and three numeric digits. If the customer number or access code is not known, contact the servicing GSA FMC and they will provide the employee with this information. Enter the current mileage and click update to complete the reporting of mileage.
VI. SAFETY INSPECTIONS, MAINTENANCE AND SERVICING
A. An employee is to have an Agency-owned vehicle inspected every 12,000 miles or once per calendar year, whichever comes first, and is to ensure that the vehicle receives state safety inspections. An employee is to claim fees for state inspections on a travel expense voucher.
B. An employee is to have all covered services, maintenance, and repairs performed under the manufacturer's warranty. For warranty questions, check with the Maintenance Control Center (MCC) by calling 866-400-0411 before obtaining repairs. An employee is to keep the warranty booklet in the glove compartment.
C. An employee is to ensure preventive maintenance (scheduled or annual servicing) is performed and is to keep the vehicle in safe operating condition at all times. An employee is to service the motor vehicle under the GSA fleet maintenance program. The service vendor should check oil, tires, battery, and radiator. An employee is to have all service performed while he or she is in a paid status;
D. An employee is to promptly replace or repair parts needed for safe operation. When possible, an employee is to have preventive maintenance and inspection performed at the same time to save money. An employee is to check tire pressure, maintaining the pressure shown on the tire sidewall.
E. An employee is to have preventive maintenance and repairs not covered under warranty completed at commercial establishments. An employee is not to make repairs and perform any maintenance.
F. For Agency-leased vehicles, if the cost of repairs or maintenance is expected to exceed $100, an employee is to obtain prior approval from the MCC by calling 866-400-0411. G. For emergency after-hours repairs over $100, an employee is to follow the directions on the reverse side of the national fleet credit card and call 866-939-4472. To avoid charges to the Agency, an employee is to notify the MCC the next day of emergency repairs.
H. An employee is to arrange for storage of Agency-owned or -leased vehicles to protect the vehicles from theft, pilferage, or bad weather. When an employee parks on the street, he or she is to follow local parking ordinances. An employee is to keep the vehicle locked at all times.
VII. USE OF GOVERNMENT CREDIT CARD
A. An employee is to be provided with a national fleet credit card to pay for certain services.
B. When buying gas, an employee is to verify the gas pump reading and note the odometer reading on the credit card ticket. Drivers of Agency-leased vehicles (not GSA-leased) can pay cash for gasoline. An employee is to obtain a receipt showing the price per gallon, gallons purchased, date, license number, and odometer reading. An employee can claim the amount spent as a travel expense. Attach a copy of the receipt to the AD-616, Travel Voucher.
C. An employee can also use the card to pay for:
- Lubricating services;
- Oil and air filter service;
- Battery charging;
- Tire repair;
- Washing and cleaning; and
- Emergency replacement of plugs, fans, belts, wipers, lamps, and other minor emergency repairs.
D. An employee is to safeguard and control his or her fleet credit card at all times. The employee is to never leave the card in an unlocked vehicle. If the credit card is lost or stolen, he or she is to notify his or her immediate supervisor. The employee also is to notify the GSA fleet service representative if it is a GSA-leased vehicle, or PMB if it is an Agency-owned or commercially leased vehicle so that the account can be closed.
E. The DO or program office will review driver copies of gasoline station sales receipts against credit card verification reports for Agency-owned and commercially leased vehicles. This review ensures that the credit card was used only for the assigned vehicle and that all charges are authorized and reasonable. The DO or program office is to create a file for each Agency-owned or commercially leased vehicle. Place credit card receipts and motor vehicle use reports (Form AD-187, Operation and Utilization Record) in the file. Retain this information for 3 years after disposal of Agency-owned vehicles or the return of commercially leased vehicles.
F. An employee using a GOV (not GSA-leased) is to record usage data on Form AD-187, or another appropriate form supplied by the DO or program office, and forward it along with all receipts to the DO or program office.
VIII. REPORTING ACCIDENTS, THEFT, OR DAMAGE
A. An employee driving a leased GSA fleet or Agency-owned vehicle is to be careful to prevent accidents. Driver awareness and caution while driving the Government vehicle could help prevent many accidents. Government employees acting within the scope of their employment are protected against third party claims by Public Law 87-258, Federal Tort Claims Act. USDA pays for any repairs needed as a result of an accident or theft. USDA reimburses the contractor if a leased vehicle is totaled in an accident or unrecovered within 30 days after being stolen. Liability for lease payments ceases on the date of the accident or theft, with payment for the final month prorated.
B. In case of a vehicle accident, the driver is required to follow the following procedures:
- Regardless of how minor the damage or who is at fault, attempt to get a police officer to investigate the accident. A police report is the single most important document in an accident case file;
- Do not admit fault to anyone, not even the investigating officer. An admission of fault can reduce or eliminate any chance GSA has of recovering the cost of repairing the GOV;
- Obtain names, addresses, phone numbers, and insurance data from all parties involved and record the information on the SF-91;
- Get witness statements if available;
- Obtain a copy of the police report;
- Notify the Accident Management Center of the accident and condition of the GOV within 48 hours. The phone number is 866–400–0411;
- Notify the supervisor within 48 hours; and
- Complete an SF-91 and forward a copy to the servicing FMC and the original copy to:
- USDA FSIS OAS PMB 5601 SUNNYSIDE AVE MAILDROP 5230 BELTSVILLE MD 20705-5230
C. The driver is to list PMB as the point of contact for submitting claims and provide the SF-95 to the third party, if requested. The driver can provide the phone number 301-504-4220 to the claimant for information on how to file a claim.
D. When the driver’s supervisor is notified of theft or an accident, he or she is to conduct an initial inquiry and complete the required forms. See FSIS Directive 4791.1 and FSIS Directive 4791.13 for additional information. The supervisor is to arrange for an investigation by the Labor and Employee Relations Division if the accident involved death or possible misconduct, or there could be claims for or against the Government.
IX. REASSIGNMENT OF VEHICLES
A. An Employee driving a GOV who has a change of duty status and no longer requires a vehicle is to notify PMB. PMB will make every effort to reassign the motor vehicle to another high-mileage driver in the same area. FMC authorizes the transfer of a motor vehicle from one GSA region to another.
B. The DO and program offices will review mileage figures on a regular basis to identify high and low-mileage drivers. Supervisors can ask to reassign vehicles, to the extent feasible, to equalize mileage on cars. The DO or program office is not to replace GSA motor vehicles with new lease vehicles. Use GSA motor vehicles before ordering commercial-lease vehicles.
CHAPTER III - LONG-TERM VEHICLE RENTALS (GSA)
An employee, who has made an annual commitment as a high-mileage driver and has completed FSIS Form 3800-2, has the option to request a GOV for his or her official use. Once the Property Management Branch (PMB) receives the completed form signed by the supervisor, PMB will request a long-term rental from GSA.
II. SUBMITTING A REQUEST
A. When a long-term rental is required, PMB will write to the appropriate GSA FMC when a vehicle is needed for more than 60 days on an assigned basis by providing the following data:
- Type of vehicle needed;
- Brief description of proposed usage and reason for need;
- Statement that the program has budgeted monies for this type of cost, and that those monies were authorized by the Office of Management and Budget;
- Billing office address code number;
- Program office fund code;
- Estimated annual mileage and duration of need;
- Driver’s name and address; and
- Location where vehicle will be stored.
B. As indicated in the annual high-mileage notice, an employee is to collect the higher mileage rate for all reimbursable mileage until a vehicle becomes available. The GSA FMC will provide a letter to the Agency authorizing the Agency to use a commercial vendor.
C. The GSA FMC prepares GSA Form 1152 for signature by the requesting Agency’s authorized employee driving a GOV or supervisor. A copy of GSA Form 1152, Monthly Vehicle Assignment Record, and a vehicle operator's packet is furnished upon delivery of an assigned vehicle.
III. BILLING AND PAYMENT PROCEDURES
A. GSA will send bills directly to the National Finance Center (NFC) for payment.
B. An employee is to support credit card purchases with a copy of the sales receipt. If for some reason a service station does not accept the national fleet credit card, pay cash and secure a receipt signed by the vendor, noting why the credit card was unacceptable. If the service station refuses to furnish a receipt, the driver is to submit an SF-1164, Claim for Reimbursement for Expenditures on Official Business, for reimbursement to the DO or program office indicating that the vendor did not furnish a receipt.
C. An employee is to prepare an SF-1164 to claim reimbursement of Government vehicle out-ofpocket expenses. He or she is to sign and submit the reimbursement to the District Manager (DM) or program manager. After approval by the District Office/Progarm Office, the District/Program Office is to submit the claim form to PMB for reimbursement processing. Ensure that the Government tag number is on the SF-1164. Sign in section 8 and forward the SF-1164 and original receipts to PMB.
D. The PMB reviews the request, provides accounting information, and forwards it to the Financial Processing Center (FPC) for processing. FPC reviews the SF-1164 and transmits it to NFC for payment. NFC processes payment to the claimant’s salary account. No written notification from NFC is provided when a payment is made to the employee.
CHAPTER IV - STORAGE AT OR NEAR EMPLOYEE'S RESIDENCE
A. An employee is to be aware of the unfavorable impression, even when unfounded, that storing a GOV at or near his or her homes can create. Therefore, the storage of an official vehicle at or near an FSIS employee’s home is authorized only when all of the following criteria are met:
- An eligible employee is engaged in field work. Eligible employees include the following:
- Veterinary Medical Officer – 0701;
- Food Technologist – 1382;
- Food Inspector – 1863;
- Consumer Safety Inspector – 1862;
- Import Inspector – 1863;
- Investigator – 1801;
- Program Investigator – 1801;
- Consumer Safety Officer – 0696; and
- General Investigation – 1810.
2. The designation of a worksite as a field office does not, by itself, permit the use of a GOV for home-to-work transportation. Field work is defined as official work performed by an employee whose job requires the employee's presence at various locations that are:
a. At a significant distance from the employee's place of employment (itinerant-type travel involving multiple stops within the accepted local commuting area or use outside that area); or
b. At a remote location that is accessible only by Government-provided transportation.
3. It is proven that such storage is required to properly perform official duties.
4. The details of the storage arrangement are fully documented.
5. An employee is to certify that he or she is aware of the penalties for using the vehicle for unofficial purposes. Except as provided below, an employee cannot keep or store GOVs at or near his or her residence unless the employee receives approval from PMB.
B. EIAOs are to park at the worksite whenever possible. If he or she is determined to be on call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week by the DO, then a home-to-work authorization will be considered.
III. BASIS FOR AUTHORIZATION FOR STORAGE AT OR NEAR EMPLOYEE' S RESIDENCE
A. FSIS will review requests for storage and consider the following:
1. The employee is allowed to use Government-provided vehicles for transportation to and from work only when that use is consistent with DR 5400-005;
2. The employee is stationed at a field point where they have no office and commute directly from his or her residence to varying points for duty;
3. The employee is stationed at a field location where there is a local office but normally reports directly to varying points of duty. The fact that the employee can travel to a field point is not sufficient. Travel plans are to be definite before storage can be approved;
4. The employee needs to depart on, and return from, field trips at unusually early and late hours that cannot be avoided without serious handicap to the Government's work;
5. Calls for service are made at unusual hours, and the need for prompt action does not permit the delay; and
6. Distance guidelines for mileage from an employee’s residence to his or her duty station or Headquarter (HQ) plant are as follows:
a. If the distance from the residence to the duty station or HQ plant is 100 miles or more driving one way, the authorization request is denied;
b. If the distance from the residence to the duty station or HQ plant is 80 - 99 miles, the request is sent back to the DO or program office to determine whether the mileage and patrol is in the Government’s best interest. If the DO or program office does not approve the request, HQ will concur and disapprove the home-to-work request; or
c. If the distance from the residence to the duty station or HQ plant is 79 miles or less, HQ will approve the request unless the DO or program office provides supplemental information as to why it is not in the Government’s best interest.
B. The following circumstances do not establish a basis for authorizing home-to-work transportation for field work:
1. When an employee assigned to field work is not actually performing field work; and
2. When an employee normally commutes to a fixed location, however far-removed from his or her official duty station.
C. For instances where an employee is authorized home-to-work transportation under the field work provision but performs field work only on an intermittent basis, the Agency is to establish procedures to ensure that a Government vehicle is used only when field work is actually being performed. When
an employee has an approved home-to-work on file, and he or she reports directly to his or her HQ plant or duty station, he or she is to use his or her POV that day.
D. Although some employees’ daily workstations are not located in a Government office, these employees are not performing field work as defined in DR 5400-005. All Government employees working in a “field office” are responsible for their own commuting costs.
E. Code 17 simplifies claiming commuting fringe benefits. The Tax Reform Act of 1984 required that certain employer-provided fringe benefits be considered as income for Federal tax purposes. The Internal Revenue Service determined that employer-provided transportation, such as General Services Administration (GSA) leased vehicles, between home and the point of duty is such a fringe benefit. The IRS determined that for each one-way commute, the sum of $1.50 should be reported as taxable income. Transaction Code 17 was developed to capture these fringe benefit trips on the time and attendance (T&A) form. DR 2600-1, Taxation of Fringe Benefits, issued on 2/21/90, clarified which trips are considered fringe benefits that require using Code 17. For clarification of when to use this code, please contact the Fiscal Services Branch, Budget Division (FSB, BD).
IV. SUBMISSION OF REQUEST
A. To make a request to store a vehicle at or near his or her home, an employee completes items 1 through 11 on Form AD-728, Request and Authorization For Home to Work Transportation, to request authorization for home-to-work transportation. The employee is to provide a simple sketch, list, or description showing the travel pattern for a typical month in item 8 or on the reverse side of the form to assist the approving officials in making an impartial determination.
B. The employee is to sign and deliver the Form AD-728 to his or her supervisor or designee for evaluation.
C. The supervisor is to evaluate the requests based only on what is beneficial to the Government following DR 5400-005. If the supervisor approves the request, he or she is to sign in item 12. If he or she disapproves the request, the supervisor is to explain the reason for the disapproval in item 13 and return to employee. The supervisor is to forward approved requests to PMB for final action.
D. PMB is to ensure all requests are properly justified, and that Form AD-728 is complete. PMB will only authorize home-to-work transportation when such use substantially increases the efficiency and economy of the Government and follows DR 5400-005. The employee’s comfort and convenience are not justifications.
E. PMB is to ensure that Form AD-728 for approved home-to-work authorizations is filed and maintained to document the need for an employee to use home-to-work transportation. PMB is to ensure that all home-to-work transportation approvals are recertified every 2 years. PMB is to distribute a copy of the approved Form AD-728 to the employee and retain the original.
F. PMB coordinates the approval of Form AD-728 for any driver not on the designated list of employees performing field work.
G. The authorization will be issued in the employee's name and is not transferable. An employee is to submit a new application whenever circumstances change, or whenever an address or duty assignment changes. There can be only one authorization in effect at a time. All previous authorizations are discontinued with the issuance of the current authorization. An employee cannot have authorizations at more than one residence.
V. PRIOR APPROVAL REQUIRED FOR TEMPORARY HOME- TO- WORK AUTHORIZATIONS
A. PMB authorization is required when circumstances require that a GOV assigned to a field or program office is utilized to perform field work on an intermittent basis, and home-to-work authorization is requested. Such exception may be necessary when brief storage of several days is in the Government’s best interest and promotes the efficient performance of FSIS field work. In writing and under the criteria in DR 5400-005, PMB may pre-approve some temporary storage for 2 or 3 days.
B. To obtain approval, an employee is to complete Form AD-728 and have it signed by his or supervisor and fax it to 301–504–4231. The employee is to include a justification as to why temporarily storing the GOV at the residence will promote the efficient performance of FSIS field work. The employee is to include a fax number for returning the Form AD-728. PMB will review the request, make a determination, and fax it back to the number provided.
C. This exception is intended to apply only when there is an infrequent need for storage at the employee's residence. The program office is required to keep a memorandum record citing the circumstances that make such storage necessary, including dates, itinerary, and hours of use and departure.
VI. REVIEW AND RECERTIFICATION
A. FSIS is to recertify home-to-work authorizations every 2 years as directed by DR 5400-005. A 9- month cycle (see below) is set up to approve home-to-work authorizations every odd year (examples: 2013, 2015, 2017). PMB is to contact each program area 60 days before home-to-work authorizations expire, explaining the recertification process and requesting that the program provide PMB with its program area’s home-to-work recertification for any employee driving a GOV for approval or disapproval.
9- MONTH CYCLE FOR RECERTIFYING HOME- TO- WORK AUTHORIZATIONS
April OFO- Atlanta, OIEA SW
May OFO-Alameda, OIEA NE
July OFO- Des Moines, OIEA WEST
August OFO-,Jackson, Raleigh
September OFO-Dallas, Springdale
November OFO-Denver, OIEA SE
December OFO- OFO - IID
B. All home-to-work authorization requests received after the scheduled recertification process will carry an authorization period from the time of approval until the next scheduled review of that particular program area
CHAPTER V – PROCESS FOR REQUESTING USE OF ALL-WHEEL DRIVE OR 4-WHEEL DRIVE VECHICLES USED DURING SEVERE WEATHER OR ON ROUGH TERRAIN
FSIS accommodates GOV drivers by approving non-standard GOV equipment for use in geographic locations that are subject to long periods of severe weather, or where the terrain is rough. The criteria for requesting snow tires or all-wheel or 4-wheel drive vehicles are on the reverse side of FSIS Form 2450-10, Severe Weather and/or Terrain Non-Standard GOV Equipment Request. FSIS will ensure that the approved equipment is cost effective for the Agency.
II. EMPLOYEE RESPONSIBILITIES
A. An employee operating a GOV is to complete a FSIS Form 2450-10 to request snow tires, studded snow tires, or all wheel or 4-wheel drive vehicles for use in severe weather or rough terrain.
B. The employee also is to submit a justification with the form request and forward both to his or her immediate supervisor. The justification is to meet the criteria provided on the reverse side of FSIS Form 2450-10.
III. SUPERVISOR RESPONSIBILITES
A. The supervisor is to sign the FSIS Form 2450-10 and provide a recommendation to concur or not concur within 5 business days after receiving the form.
B. The supervisor is to explain any nonconcurrence with the request on the form in the explanation and comments section.
C. The supervisor is to forward the request to the District Manager (DM) or the Regional Manager (RM) in the program office.
IV. DO OR PROGRAM OFFICE RESPONSIBILITIES
A. The DM or RM program office is to review the form and approves or disapproves the request.
B. If the DO or program office approves the request, the DO or program office employee is to work with the headquarters fleet manager and the local General Services Administration (GSA) representative to acquire the approved item.
C. If the DO or program office denies the request, the DM or program manager is to inform the employee in writing. The employee may submit an appeal the denial to the headquarters fleet manager.
V. FLEET MANAGER RESPONSIBILITES
The fleet manager and the Property Management Branch (PMB) Chief in OM are to consult with the Employee Safety, Health and Wellness Staff and with GSA to review the appeal and make a final decision on the request.
VI. PURCHASING SNOW TIRES
A. PMB is to contact the GSA fleet service representative for employees and inform the representative that it approves the snow tire purchase.
B. The employee is to contact the GSA Maintenance Control Center (MCC) at 866-400-0411 to find a tire vendor in the area and have MCC approve the purchase. MCC will bill the Agency for the expense.
C. The employee is to notify the DO by e-mail when the snow tires are mounted on the vehicle and removed from the vehicle each season.
VII. STORAGE OF ALL SEASON TIRES
A. An employee is to provide inside storage for the all season tires at his or her expense.
B. An employee is to have the all season tires re-mounted on the vehicle after the snow tires are no longer needed for the season. The employee is to provide inside storage of the snow tires at his or her expense.
C. An employee is to contact a certified tire vendor to re-mount the tires. An employee is not to re- mount the tires.
D. The employee can submit an SF-1164, Claim for Reimbursement for Expenditures on Official Business, for reimbursement only for re-mounting the tires.
VIII. DISPOSAL OF SNOW TIRES.
A. When an employee returns a vehicle to GSA, the vehicle is to have all season tires mounted.
B. If GSA provides an employee with a vehicle for which the snow tires the employee has do not fit, the employee is to contact the DO/RO before disposing of the snow tires.
C. Any expenses associated with the disposal of the snow tires will be at the DO’s/RO expense. The employee can be reimbursed for the expense of the disposed after submitting an SF-1164 for the cost of disposal.
CHAPTER VI – TERMINATING AUTHORIZATION TO USE A GOV
I. REVOCATION OF AUTHORIZATION TO USE A GOV
A. An employee using or allowing someone else to use a GOV for other than official purposes is subject to suspension without pay for not less than 1 month or removal from office, if the facts warrant such action.
B. An employee’s authorization will be revoked for sufficient cause. Some examples of situations serious enough to merit such action are if the employee:
1. Misrepresents material facts related to his or her identity, driving record, and physical or mental condition;
2. Has a state license that is revoked or suspended;
3. Operates a motor vehicle on official business without a valid state driver’s license;
4. Is convicted (or forfeits collateral) in connection with a serious traffic violation, such as reckless driving, manslaughter, or speeding more than 20 miles per hour over the speed limit;
5. Is convicted in traffic court of operating a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol, narcotics, or pathogenic (disease-producing) drugs;
6. Is removed for more than 60 days by adverse action from a position that requires operating a motor vehicle;
7. Is convicted of leaving the scene of an accident without providing proper identification;
8. Has three or more preventable (at fault) motor vehicle accidents within a period of 3 years or less; or
9. Fails to respond to prescribed medical treatment causing the inability to operate a motor vehicle in a safe manner, including failure to take medication as prescribed.
C. An employee who holds an authorization is to notify his or her supervisor if any of the situations listed in B. above occur. Failure to make a timely report (within 30 calendar days) can result in disciplinary action against the offending employee. Disciplinary action can result in relieving the offending employee from duties that require operating a motor vehicle.
D. An employee is to pay the cost of repair or replacement of property damages, is disciplined, or both, if the Agency determines that an accident involving a GOV was caused by the employee’s intemperate habits, negligence, or the violation of laws or regulations. See FSIS Directive 3720.1.
E. The supervisor is to make appropriate recommendations for granting authorized use, or revoking driving privileges. The supervisor is to prohibit an employee from driving a GOV on official business if the employee:
1. Is found intoxicated;
2. Has endangered public safety;
3. Has engaged in unsafe driving practices; or
4. For any reason, cannot drive safely.
F. The supervisor determines when an employee is no longer prohibited from driving a GOV on official business.
II. SEPERATION FROM THE AGENCY
An employee leaving FSIS who has an authorization relinquishes the authorization effective on the date of separation from FSIS.
Refer questions regarding this directive to the PMB at 301-504-4220.
See full PDF for additional information.