Frequent flier bill flies out of House committee

The House Government Reform Committee Wednesday approved by voice vote legislation that would allow federal employees to keep frequent flier miles earned on official travel for personal use.

Reps. Dan Burton, R-Ind., and Connie Morella, R-Md., introduced H.R. 2456 on July 11, in the hopes that the measure could be used as a retention tool in federal agencies.

In most cases, federal employees are not allowed to keep for personal use any frequent flier miles earned during trips taken for official government business. However, momentum for repealing that rule has grown in the past few months. In May, the General Accounting Office put its weight behind overturning the ban, saying that enabling employees to keep their miles would help agencies compete with the private sector for talent.

Under the new legislation, federal workers could keep their miles as long as the frequent flier programs used were obtained under the same terms as provided to the general public and cost the government no extra money. Other frequent traveler benefit programs, such as hotel point programs and car rental point programs would also be covered under the bill. The bill would be retroactive, allowing federal employees to keep and use miles earned prior to the bill's enactment.

"In the private sector, businesses let their employees keep frequent flier miles," said Burton, the committee's chairman. "It's good employee relations. A lot of the time, employees have to travel on their own time. It also helps companies hold on to their good employees. That's the approach the federal government ought to take."

The Bush administration added language in its proposed fiscal 2002 defense authorization bill that repeals restrictions on the personal use of frequent flier miles for both military and civilian employees.

Stay up-to-date with federal news alerts and analysis — Sign up for GovExec's email newsletters.
Close [ x ] More from GovExec

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Forecasting Cloud's Future

    Conversations with Federal, State, and Local Technology Leaders on Cloud-Driven Digital Transformation

  • The Big Data Campaign Trail

    With everyone so focused on security following recent breaches at federal, state and local government and education institutions, there has been little emphasis on the need for better operations. This report breaks down some of the biggest operational challenges in IT management and provides insight into how agencies and leaders can successfully solve some of the biggest lingering government IT issues.

  • Communicating Innovation in Federal Government

    Federal Government spending on ‘obsolete technology’ continues to increase. Supporting the twin pillars of improved digital service delivery for citizens on the one hand, and the increasingly optimized and flexible working practices for federal employees on the other, are neither easy nor inexpensive tasks. This whitepaper explores how federal agencies can leverage the value of existing agency technology assets while offering IT leaders the ability to implement the kind of employee productivity, citizen service improvements and security demanded by federal oversight.

  • IT Transformation Trends: Flash Storage as a Strategic IT Asset

    MIT Technology Review: Flash Storage As a Strategic IT Asset For the first time in decades, IT leaders now consider all-flash storage as a strategic IT asset. IT has become a new operating model that enables self-service with high performance, density and resiliency. It also offers the self-service agility of the public cloud combined with the security, performance, and cost-effectiveness of a private cloud. Download this MIT Technology Review paper to learn more about how all-flash storage is transforming the data center.

  • Ongoing Efforts in Veterans Health Care Modernization

    This report discusses the current state of veterans health care


When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.