The Executive Committee of the National Joint Council (NJC) is pleased to announce that it recently accepted the report of the Government Travel Committee in regard to the cyclical review of the Directive.

This Travel Directive was developed in partnership by employer and bargaining agent representatives at the National Joint Council. Its provisions form part of the collective agreements of the participating parties under the By-Laws of the National Joint Council.

This Communiqué highlights the changes to the Travel Directive and provides a link to a "Points of Clarification on specific issues with respect to Intent" which will assist users in gaining a better understanding of the application of various new and existing provisions of the Travel Directive.

IMPLEMENTATION DATE

The revised Directive is effective on April 1, 2008.

HIGHLIGHTS OF CHANGES

Bottled Water

Where 3.1.3 and 3.2.3 previously indicated that bottled water provisions were not applicable and where 3.3.3. indicated it was part of incidental allowance, these sections now indicate:

The cost of reasonable amounts of bottled water shall be reimbursed based on receipts.

Transportation

Additional expenses associated with transportation will now be reimbursed with receipt or declaration.

Sections 3.2.11, 3.3.11 and 3.4.11 have been reworded to include these additional expenses.

Section 3.1.11 has been modified to reflect the wording of the other Modules as outlined above.

Gratuities

Section 3.1.11(a), 3.2.11(a), 3.3.11(a) and 3.4.11(a) have been modified to include the reimbursement of gratuities.

Additional Business Expenses

The following text was added to 3.1.2, 3.2.2., 3.3.2, 3.4.2, to clarify provisions:

Where required, the employer shall make the necessary arrangements for obtaining entry documents as determined by the department, and/or an appropriate passport and photos, and/or visa as determined by Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada and any required inoculations, vaccinations, X-rays and certificates of health, at no expense to the employee. Where possible, the services of Health Canada, Veterans Affairs Canada or National Defence shall be used for medical services. Any related expenses incurred by an employee shall be reimbursed.

Currency exchange

Provisions for currency exchange are now available in Module 1.

Dependant Care

Provisions for dependant care are now available in Module 1.

Incidental Expense Allowance

Provisions for Incidental Expense Allowance are now available in Module 1.

Blanket Travel Authority

In order to formalize and standardize the practice of granting blanket travel authorities, the following has been added to the Directive:

Authorization for travel which is continuous or repetitive in nature, with no variation in the specific terms and conditions of trips and where it is not practical or administratively efficient to obtain prior approval from the employer for each individual trip. Any exceptions to the BTA parameters shall require that the individual trip be specifically approved, prior to travel status, where possible. BTA does not apply to groups of employees. Employees may have more than one blanket travel authority simultaneously.

The new Appendix E features templates designed to assist users in capturing necessary information for the approval of Blanket Travel Authorities.

Incidental Expense Allowance

International Travel Outside Canada or the Continental United States of America (USA)

The above title was modified to clarify that travel to USA locations or protectorates outside the continental USA is covered by the provisions of Module 4 and Appendix D (International).

To ensure incidental expense allowances are available to travellers where no breakfast, lunch and dinner allowance is listed, the following two paragraphs were added:

International incidental expense allowances are based on a formula which takes into account the breakfast, lunch and/ or dinner allowance for the applicable country or location.

In situations where there are no meal allowances from which to compute the incidental allowance for a particular country or location, the traveller will be reimbursed the equivalent of the applicable incidental allowance published in Appendix C, in Canadian dollars.

These are now presented in Appendix D.

Public service – For the purposes of this directive "public service" shall include the same parties and persons outlined in Article 1 of the NJC By‑Laws.

Receipts

The definition has been clarified to indicate that all receipts must specify the currency in which the expenses were incurred (except Canadian dollars) and may be annotated by the traveller to do so.

Travel Status – occurs when an employee or traveller is on authorized government travel.

Responsibilities of the employer have been modified to ensure discussion prior to travel:

1.5  Responsibilities

1.5.1(c) ensure that the manager with delegated authority, in consultation with the employee and the employee's immediate supervisor.

New text was added in 1.6.3, whereby the section 1.6 regarding Suppliers, services and products now reads:

1.6.3  In consultation with the employee, the employer shall utilize the Designated Responsibility Centre Travel Card "departmental travel card" (DRCTC) to the extent possible to prepay travel arrangements.

Workplace Change (applies within the headquarters area only)

The title to the Workplace change section has been expanded to identify that it is to be used only within the headquarters area.

The following text was moved from 3.1.11 and added as 1.9.3, under the Workplace change section, further clarifying this concept.

1.9.3  When conditions under workplace change are not met, transportation shall be provided to the temporary workplace or the kilometric rate paid for the distance between the home and the temporary workplace, or between the permanent workplace and the temporary workplace, whichever is less.

The revised Travel Directive will be available as of February 1, 2008 at the following link: http://www.tbs-sct.gc.ca/pubs_pol/hrpubs/TBM_113/menu-travel-voyage_e.asp.

You are invited to consult the "Points of Clarification on specific issues with respect to Intent" which are posted in the "What's New" section of the NJC website: http://www.njc-cnm.gc.ca.

ENQUIRIES

Enquiries about this Directive should be referred to the respective Bargaining Agent, or Designated Departmental Travel Co‑ordinator(s).