Entitlement to Official Travel Orders While on Leave of Absence

Gao ID: B-192561 June 13, 1979

An advance decision was requested by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) as to whether the agency may properly issue official travel orders covering a trip by a Navy employee who went to search for government employment in another State. Upon his acceptance of employment with HUD, the employee submitted a request that official travel orders be issued authorizing travel and relocation allowances for a permanent change of station move. HUD authorities disapproved the employee's request after making a preliminary determination that his move from Washington to California was primarily a matter of personal convenience. The employee contended that the transaction should be regarded as an interagency transfer performed for the convenience and best interest of the government. There was no indication, however, that HUD and Navy authorities acted jointly in advance to approve an interagency transfer of the employee in the interest of the government. GAO held, therefore, that HUD officials were correct in making a determination that the travel was primarily a matter of personal convenience for the employee.

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