# 2015-141 - Pay and Benefits, Transportation Expenses

Pay and Benefits, Transportation Expenses

Case Summary

F&R Date: 2015–09–11

The grievor required ongoing weekly medical appointments as a result of military service. The nearest hospital with proper facilities was an approximate two-hour car drive from where the grievor resided. He began driving his private motor vehicle (PMV) to his medical appointments, and submitted claims for PMV travel without having sought prior authorization. He included a cost comparison worksheet with each claim, wherein he included the cost of travel by train and PMV (the train being the most cost efficient). Since he considered the train as the most economical means of travel, he requested that he be reimbursed that cost. However, the grievor's unit conducted a cost comparison and determined that a car rental would have been the most economical means for the grievor's travel and reimbursed him the cost of a daily car rental, including gas and taxes.

The grievor argued that he could not consider a car rental as a viable option because he did not have an active credit card at the time, which in his view was required to rent a car. The grievor requested that his disputed claims be finalized in accordance with his entitlements under relevant policy.

The Initial Authority (IA) denied the grievance, essentially stating that the amount the grievor sought based on the cost of travel by train was not consistent with standing duty travel policy. He stated that since the grievor did not obtain the necessary authorization to use his PMV, he considered the grievor's decision a personal choice. The IA pointed out that in accordance with the Canadian Forces Temporary Duty Travel Instructions (CFTDTI), a member who uses a PMV is paid the lesser of either: the kilometric rate or the cost of a more economical and practical mode of transportation (MOT). He also noted that car rental vendors will accept cash deposits for the rental of a vehicle, which would not require the member to be out of pocket, given that the unit could provide a cash advance prior to travel.

Committee staff contacted a large car rental company in the city where the grievor lived and worked and confirmed that, absent a credit card, a $250 deposit was required to rent a standard size vehicle, which could have been advanced by the CAF as pointed out by the IA. The Committee found, based on the cost comparison worksheets in the file that a car rental would have been the most economical and practical MOT for the grievor's duty travel and the cost would have been lesser than paying the kilometric rate.

The Committee further found that the CAF's cost comparison was incomplete. The Committee noted that when renting a vehicle the cost is limited to the daily rental rate only when using a government issued credit card given that the Crown self-insures. However, the Committee pointed out that when not using a government issued credit card, the CFTDTI requires that a member buy collision damage waiver (CDW) coverage, which was the grievor's situation. This additional cost was not captured nor compensated by the CAF authorities. In fairness to the grievor and to comply with policy, the Committee recommended that an additional daily amount to compensate for CDW, as quoted by the large car rental company, be reimbursed to the grievor for his disputed claims.

CDS Decision Summary

CDS Decision Date: 2015–12–09

The FA agreed with the Committee's findings and recommendation. The FA added that using PMV was a personal choice on the grievor's part and that he was not entitled to any reimbursement whatsoever. However, since his unit made the decision to provide him some leeway in this matter, combined with the fact that they did not address the issue firmly after the

first trip, the FA decided not to overturn their decision.

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