[Claim for Training Expenses Including Thesis Preparation Costs]

B-212362: Jun 28, 1984

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The Defense Logistics Agency (DLA) requested an advance decision as to whether an employee could be reimbursed for the full cost of thesis preparation incident to long-term training. GAO stated that the head of each agency has the discretion to pay all or part of the necessary expenses of training, including related expenses. Therefore, GAO held that there was no legal objection to the payment of expenses related to the thesis preparation. Under the guidance of the Federal Personnel Manual, which encourages agencies to establish just and equitable financial assistance policies, DLA limits reimbursement for typing and copying expenses for a thesis to $200 unless travel orders state otherwise. DLA applied the established limit in this case. Although GAO would not overrule the agency's denial of reimbursement of thesis preparation expenses, GAO stated that DLA has the authority to pay such expenses and it would not object if DLA chose to do so.