B-234886, Dec 19, 1989

B-234886: Dec 19, 1989

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CIVILIAN PERSONNEL - Relocation - Temporary quarters - Actual subsistence expenses - Eligibility - Annual leave DIGEST: This summary letter decision addresses well established rules which have been discussed in previous Comptroller General decisions. Was transferred from Windsor. He was authorized temporary quarters subsistence expenses for 30 days from August 7 to September 5. We have held that an employee need not continually occupy temporary quarters in order to be reimbursed for such expenses. An employee is entitled to reimbursement even while on annual leave if the employee's annual leave and travel away from his new duty station did not cause an unwarranted extension of the period of temporary quarters or a delay in occupying permanent quarters.

B-234886, Dec 19, 1989

CIVILIAN PERSONNEL - Relocation - Temporary quarters - Actual subsistence expenses - Eligibility - Annual leave DIGEST: This summary letter decision addresses well established rules which have been discussed in previous Comptroller General decisions. To locate substantive decisions addressing this issue, refer to decisions indexed under the above listed index entry.

J. M. Shafer:

Mr. J. M. Shafer, an employee of the Department of Energy, was transferred from Windsor, Colorado, to Tulsa, Oklahoma. He was authorized temporary quarters subsistence expenses for 30 days from August 7 to September 5, 1988. During the period September 2 through 5, 1988, Mr. Shafer returned to his old duty station on annual leave to assist his family in relocating to Tulsa. The agency denied that portion of Mr. Schafer's voucher which represented lodging expenses for the 4-day annual leave period.

We have held that an employee need not continually occupy temporary quarters in order to be reimbursed for such expenses. An employee is entitled to reimbursement even while on annual leave if the employee's annual leave and travel away from his new duty station did not cause an unwarranted extension of the period of temporary quarters or a delay in occupying permanent quarters. Donald J. Douin, 68 Comp.Gen. 268 (1989); Jon C. Wade, 61 Comp.Gen. 46 (1981), and decisions cited therein.

The record before us indicates that Mr. Shafer took 4 days annual leave within the allowable 30-day period and, therefore, did not cause any extension of the period of temporary quarters. Furthermore, since his purpose for taking the leave was to assist his family in relocating to the new duty station, it appears that he was attempting to expedite the occupancy of permanent quarters. Clearly, the period of annual leave did not extend the period of temporary quarters or delay his entry into permanent quarters. Accordingly, Mr. Shafer may be reimbursed for the lodgings portion of temporary quarters subsistence expenses for the 4 days he was on leave.