Domicile to Duty comes with regulations
November 8, 2010
Domicile to Duty
What is it'
Domicile to Duty is using government-owned, commercially leased or U.S. General Services Administration-leased vehicles to transport individuals from domiciles to work. Normally, DTD is authorized only when there is a clear and present danger to an individual and only used within the commuting area of employment.
In the Army, only the secretary of the Army and the chief of staff are authorized DTD under 31 U.S.C. 1344 and do not require recurring validation and approval. DTD for these individuals is considered an employer-provided fringe benefit and taxable income under current law (26 U.S.C. 61 and 132).
Only the secretary of the Army can authorize DTD to Army personnel; this authority cannot be delegated. However, for overseas contingency operations only, a combatant commander, in accordance with 10 U.S.C. 2637, can provide government transportation for specific members when it is determined that public or private transportation is unsafe or unavailable. A person who is "acting" in a position of an official entitled to DTD is not entitled to DTD unless the vacancy is due to resignation, death or removal. DTD is not justifiable strictly due to official travel requirements.
The initial duration of a DTD determination will not exceed 15 consecutive days. Should circumstances continue, the secretary of the Army may approve a subsequent determination of not more than 90 additional consecutive days. If at the end of the subsequent determination, circumstances still exist, the secretary may authorize an additional 90 consecutive days.
Initial DTD determinations must be reported to congress no later than 60 days after approval. Subsequent determinations may be consolidated and reported to congress quarterly.
The secretary of the Army may also authorize DTD for performance of intelligence, counterintelligence, protective services or criminal law enforcement duties. Justification must be considered essential for safe and efficient conduct of such missions. All DTD determinations made under this authority will be updated and approved annually.
For DTD transportation involving "field work," the secretary of the Army may approve in writing those positions (medical officers, military recruiters, quality assurance representatives, auditors, subsistence procurement agents and some inspectors) authorized fieldwork. These authorizations may cover up to two years from date of approval. When authorized, transportation should be provided only on days of fieldwork.
There is no requirement to report DTD transportation for fieldwork, intelligence, protective services or law enforcement to congress. In these situations, DTD is not considered a fringe benefit and is not taxable to the recipient.
What has the Army done'
The Army compiles requested DTD determinations quarterly. The Army secretary reviews and approves such determinations. If a DTD determination is for 90 days or less, a memorandum is sent to the chair, Committee on Homeland Security & Government Affairs and the chair, Committee on Government Reform, to inform congress.
Reports of vehicle misuse will be investigated; if substantiated, disciplinary action as prescribed by regulations can be taken.
What continued efforts does the Army have planned for the future'
Use of government vehicles are closely monitored, ensuring only those individuals who are authorized DTD transportation are using government vehicles for domicile to duty and return.
The Army investigates any reports of government vehicle misuse, including unauthorized DTD use.
Why is this important to the Army'
As budget dollars shrink, it is ever more important for the Army to demonstrate fiscal prudence by using government vehicles for their authorized intent in ways that can withstand public scrutiny.