Entitlement to Subsistence Expenses While Occupying TQSE

B-194536: Jan 9, 1980

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An advance decision was requested concerning the entitlement of an employee of the Defense Mapping Agency to subsistence allowances while occupying temporary quarters. The employee received permanent change-of-station orders from Bolivia to the Canal Zone since he was to receive long-term training in the United States and would not be returning to Bolivia. After the completion of the training assignment, the employee returned to the Canal Zone for 8 days even though he had already received orders permanently assigning him to a duty station in Columbia. He subsequently claimed temporary quarters allowances for the period in the Canal Zone after his training. It was held that the employee was not entitled to the allowances since the Canal Zone had not been established as a permanent duty station. There appeared to be no justification for the orders which transferred him there in the first place since it was not expected that he would remain there for an extended period of time. While the employee's claim was denied, it was suggested that the Defense Mapping Agency review its personnel assignment policies to insure that transfer orders are issued only where a permanent change of station is in fact intended.