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Medical travel reimbursement

ballz

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The policy allows for substracting mileage, depending on how it is applied.

I wish I had such magick superpowers that I could just ignore all written policy presented to me, type something out completely opposite and it be true.

You just can't accept you're in the wrong even when it's given to you in black and white. This isn't a critical studies class where you can reinvent the meaning of words.

Most people are expected to be working from the office (again, outside Ottawa). The only fair way to apply the policy is to reimburse mileage from the “permanent workplace” to the appointment.

Go write the TB about it getting the policy changed then because that is certainly not what it says.

FWIW, when I was working from home, in the letter allowing me to work from home, it was specific that I was not to be reimbursed anything above and beyond what I would normally be allowed to claim if I was working from the office, including any extra TD costs.

People write letters and make-up policies they don't have the authority to write or make-up all the time. That's not a good thing so stop following in their footsteps.

"You need to write a memo to have a beard in this unit."
"You need a weekend leave pass to travel outside the geographical area in this unit."
"You can't wear your toque if you aren't wearing gloves in this unit."
"You can't wear your toque and gloves with a rain jacket in this unit."
"You can't wear your fleece as an outside layer in this unit."

If you can’t see that the OP is already afforded a significant financial advantage over their colleagues, by not having to drive to work every day probably, $100 a week, and you think that only paying mileage from base to appointment the odd time is unfair, not sure what else to say.

Like I said, I'm being objective, I'm not here to judge the OP just speak to the policy. I must have missed the part in the CFTDTIs where it says you can reduce someone's entitlement because they're on MELs and you think they've got it too good. Perhaps you can reference it for me.

How do you even know the appointment is even in the same direction of the base? For all you know he's in between the two locations and they're subtracting the mileage anyway. They quoted CBI's for a TD trip for Christ's sake, shows how competent they are.

Also, how do you know he didn't pick a house directly by an LRT that goes near base and paid $70/month for it, but the appointment is nowhere near the LRT station so driving makes infinitely more sense? I have a vehicle and I bought a house right next to the LRT so I can use it to zip downtown for $70/month instead of commuting.

CFTDTIs make all this easy since they use the "direct route" it covers everyone in any circumstance - except the circumstance where someone goes on a power trip and decides "the shortest, practical road distance between two points" includes a 20km detour to Base so you can screw them around. And don't tell me if you have an appointment or flight at 0800 they are making you drive to base and leave from base for the appointment.

You're blinded by your biases and "the way it's always been," incapable of reading the policy for what it says.
 

SupersonicMax

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I wish I had such magick superpowers that I could just ignore all written policy presented to me, type something out completely opposite and it be true.

You just can't accept you're in the wrong even when it's given to you in black and white. This isn't a critical studies class where you can reinvent the meaning of words.
So, a CO is not allowed to order a member working remotely, on base before their duty travel starts?
 

Jarnhamar

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Not if there MEL says ‘no military environment’
The base hospital/dental unit, gym, and JPSU are not considered military environments when it comes to MELs stating no military environment.
 

Jarnhamar

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I did not know that
Some doctors don't either :)

Our MEL system needs a big revamp, or at least how it's applied.

For that MEL in particular if it meant no coming on base (which people often think it does and sometimes applied as such by medical) then someone would be violating their MEL's if they went to their unit to drop off a claim or went to sick parade.
 

kev994

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That's literally the policy that's been quoted in here numerous times, with links, and it does not, in any way, say what you are saying it says.
You make some good points. My base uses it to say ‘we’re just going to not pay you’. But the more I think about it, it’s quite absurd that we can order someone on TD and just not pay them. I’ll have to dig that up again, it probably says the authority to order them on TD, not the authority to just not pay their TD.
 

ballz

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So, a CO is not allowed to order a member working remotely, on base before their duty travel starts?

You're just taking us full circle back to "Yes, unfortunately it's difficult to protect the CAF's members from leaders that lack integrity and character, hence all the scandals in the news and public and membership's loss of confidence in the CAF's leadership."

I've addressed this already, if the only reason you're doing something like this is to win "the game" - which is clearly your only motivation for in this case, despite anything else you might say to try to backtrack out of it and/or muddy the waters - then that goes right back to integrity and character.

And since you're now just taking us in circles because you won't just admit being wrong, I'm well past done with wasting my time on this.
 

SupersonicMax

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You're just taking us full circle back to "Yes, unfortunately it's difficult to protect the CAF's members from leaders that lack integrity and character, hence all the scandals in the news and public and membership's loss of confidence in the CAF's leadership."

I've addressed this already, if the only reason you're doing something like this is to win "the game" - which is clearly your only motivation for in this case, despite anything else you might say to try to backtrack out of it and/or muddy the waters - then that goes right back to integrity and character.

And since you're now just taking us in circles because you won't just admit being wrong, I'm well past done with wasting my time on this.
It is not to win a game but the fair application of the CFTDTIs. My “game” comment came after dapaterson’s comment:
Alternative method to piss everyone off: State that you will not use your own vehicle, but want a DND/CAF vehicle instead: drive to base, drop off your car, pick up the DND/CAF vehicle, go to appointment, back to base, drop off DND/CAF vehicle, pick up your car, go home.
Not sure how having the member pick up their claim before going on duty travel lacks integrity and character. Perhaps you can expand on that because it is not dishonest or immoral. I’d say picking up your claim before travel is probably par for course. Integrity and character is also about not caving to every gripe and consider all factors, and apply policies in a fair and defensible way. It is not always about an individual member but it is about members (plural). If doing something benefits one person but pisses off the rest of the crew, unless there are compelling reasons (such as major physical/mental injuries, death or mission failure), I am likely not doing it. It would be dishonest and unfair to others. And yes, small things like that often end up having a disproportionate effect on morale. Having said this, if there is little consequence to the morale of others, I’ll likely entertain the idea.
 
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ballz

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It is not to win a game but the fair application of the CFTDTIs. My “game” comment came after dapaterson’s comment:

I cannot believe the lengths you will go to... anyone can read the posts and see you are clearly trying to talk out of both sides of your mouth. You were responding to me, quoting my post, and the idea that if the member wants to quote policy and ask that it be applied correctly, you'll find a way to subvert it by making him come to base first so that he doesn't get his way.

Putting your response in the context of responding to DAP doesn't even make any sense. DAP's advice was, "don't accept taking your PMV, request a staff car / ride from the base." And your response was, "If the OP wants to play that game, I'll... I'll... I'll... do exactly that." And you expect me to believe this is what you meant?

The real crux of what's driving your motivations was clearly stated, "They are getting financial relief that many (outside Ottawa) aren’t getting, by not having to drive into work." And so you wanted to find a way to ensure the KM were taken off their mileage even though it's not within the CFTDTIs to do so.

You've now given two different versions of "the game" you were referring to - two posts ago "the game" was something completely different -both of which are demonstrably not true. Just stop.

Not sure how having the member pick up their claim before going on duty travel lacks integrity and character. Perhaps you can expand on that because it is not dishonest or immoral. I’d say picking up your claim before travel is probably par for course.

Why waste my time talking about integrity with someone who's just going to try and rewrite the story. Perhaps you're going to tell me how claims processing works too, I wouldn't know anything about that of course, I was just a Financial Policy & Procedures Officer and a Comptroller for 4.5 years.
 

SupersonicMax

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The real crux of what's driving your motivations was clearly stated, "They are getting financial relief that many (outside Ottawa) aren’t getting, by not having to drive into work." And so you wanted to find a way to ensure the KM were taken off their mileage even though it's not within the CFTDTIs to do so.
Precisely. OP stated went to base to complete admin. That mileage is NOT covered per the CFTDTIs. The mileage is covered from the base to the appointment. I would be completely okay with starting the travel from their home (doing the admin remotely and in the process, saving some of their time), as long as only the mileage from base to appointment was covered. When someone complains about being “fucked over” (their word), this is when I would start applying the full intent.

There are some nuances in the policies for COs to allow some discretion, to account for factors that processes and policies cannot didn’t take into consideration. Those policies were written before WFH was even a thing. Someone that works from home, is required to go to a medical appointment once in a while, is reimbursed a good chunk of change and saving a lot (compared to others) is hardly getting “fucked over.” Before COVID, we needed ink signatures on claims. That on itself, in the context of when the policy was written, is a good reason for the member to be ordered to work before their travel start.

This isn’t being petty. This is being fair to everyone else.
 

ballz

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OP stated went to base to complete admin. That mileage is NOT covered per the CFTDTIs.

Didn't state that he went there the same day. I doubt he went to see the clerks at 0500 before his 0630 surgery.

What is this, your 3rd or 4th version of what's going on here? I can't keep track. This latest interpretation seems to directly conflict with the one below, you sure didn't seem to think he was driving to base prior to the appointment a few posts ago:

“Playing the game” was meant as removing the convenience of starting the trip from home and start it from base, and get the same reimbursement. Allowing the OP to start directly from home while getting the mikeage from base to appointment is just a way to use common sense while applying some fiscal responsibility. If the OP wants more financial compensation because they are allowed to start traveling from home, then ordering them to work for their admin before proceeding on their local trip is entirely within the scope of what can be done to avoid this issue.

I am sure you will come back and explain that you weren't talking about going directly from home to the medical appointment, but it is very clear to anyone literate that that's exactly what you were talking about, so please don't bother, the reliability of your word has been aptly demonstrated.

There are some nuances in the policies for COs to allow some discretion, to account for factors that processes and policies cannot didn’t take into consideration. Those policies were written before WFH was even a thing. Someone that works from home, is required to go to a medical appointment once in a while, is reimbursed a good chunk of change and saving a lot (compared to others) is hardly getting “fucked over.”

It is not common practice (or common sense) to make someone drive to base to before departing on their TD depending on the time and location of the TD, length of the TD, plus a million other factors. If you have an early morning appointment somewhere, or an early morning flight, you don't drive to Base beforehand just because, or drive to the base because you're "supposed to start from there" which is not even hinted at anywhere in any policy.

Before COVID, we needed ink signatures on claims. That on itself, in the context of when the policy was written, is a good reason for the member to be ordered to work before their travel start.

I would laugh at this if it weren't so sad that you're actually trying to be serious. Like I said, you'll say anything, it's absolutely shameless.

Good thing we had mail back in 2009 so I didn't have to drive 6.5 hours to my OR when I was posted to Corner Brook and it was in St. John's. My Lord, your problem solving skills are pretty sharp too obviously.

This isn’t being petty. This is being fair to everyone else.

Like I said, depending on appointment timings (and evidently whether or not they've got a POS in charge of them), there's a real good chance everyone is just leaving from their house. And just like the CFTDTIs state, they get paid for the direct road distance they're travelling.

Not that I actually believe you think you're being "fair," because it was made clear your motivations for your proposed COA are driven purely out of vindictiveness and ego-tripping, but you also don't realize how many people you would be screwing over in the process when your new bright idea becomes "the way we've always done it" and the CFTDTIs are being applied even more incorrectly then they currently are, and people are getting royally f'd by it because some wingnut who should stick to flying planes started abusing their rank to enforce his idea about policies he's too lazy to read and too biased to comprehend objectively and coerced his clerks into doing it that way. I can think of a handful of scenarios (which are far more common than the OPs) where your new interpretation just leads to the bystanders of your vindictiveness getting screwed..... but then again, I'm actually experienced and knowledgeable about claims administration.
 

SupersonicMax

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That’s also what other senior admin officers (including within CMP, you know, those that write the CFTDTIs) think is fair and how it is applied at every base I have been posted to. But keep thinking that people “lack character and integrity” because they are “screwing people over,” without being remotely capable of seeing the forest from the tree. If only you had stayed in and challenged those issues you see, by asking the intent of those that wrote the policies and proposing changes, you’d have a bit more credibility. I can tell you with fairly good certainty the intent of the policy is as I told you. Before saying it’s impossible to have policies changed, it is entirely possible, even as a junior officer.

I am done in this topic. It stole enough of my time. Refer to your base administrative policy. If you don’t agree, ask the base admin officer to explain to you how the policy is applied and why. Good luck.
 
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ballz

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Lot's of hearsay and lots of appeals to authority in there, but nothing of any value - well, the idea that being in the CAF is in anyway correlated with credibility has some comedic value I guess.
 

PuckChaser

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Lot's of hearsay and lots of appeals to authority in there, but nothing of any value - well, the idea that being in the CAF is in anyway correlated with credibility has some comedic value I guess.
Are you done on the soap box trying to troll people into another argument or cool with just agreeing to disagree?
 

FormerHorseGuard

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I am former pay clerk use to do travel claims are the main part of my job. Claims distance was usually measured from place of work, because Transport Assistance claim only kicked in after you drove the first 32km to and from work so before you could claim any mileage you have to drive 56km a day total before any mileage would be be paid beyond that. So if you live 32 km from base and the CO approved you for transport assistance you would be able to claim 4km a day. Because the appointment is part of your duty, it would start from your place of normal duty not from home. So using that line of thinking, if you have to drive to medical appointment, the first 64 Km is on you as it would the same as if you were driving to to work each day. So if you are not getting the full mileage to an medical appointment, they are using the same standards used way back when. Just be glad they are covering some of your travel costs because the rest of the people in Canada have to wait to claim that travel distance on their taxes. So you could claim the difference on your income tax at the end of the year. As a medical expense if you live in a Province where travel can be claimed. But I know some of the rules have changed over the years but the system still works the same way. ( edit because old age and I had my numbers wrong been a long time since I did Commuters Assistance Claims, like 27 years but still worked the same way back then )
 

Blackadder1916

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. . . Just be glad they are covering some of your travel costs because the rest of the people in Canada have to wait to claim that travel distance on their taxes. So you could claim the difference on your income tax at the end of the year. As a medical expense if you live in a Province where travel can be claimed. . . .

For some clarity on claiming medical travel expenses . . .

Travel expenses (less than 40 km) – travel expenses cannot be claimed as a medical expense if you traveled less than 40 kilometres (one way) from your home to get medical services.

Travel expenses (at least 40 km) – the cost of the public transportation expenses (for example, taxis, bus, or train) when a person needs to travel at least 40 kilometres (one way), but less than 80 km, from their home to get medical services.

To claim transportation and travel expenses, all of the following conditions must be met:
  • Substantially equivalent medical services were not available near your home.
  • You took a reasonably direct travelling route.
  • It is reasonable, under the circumstances, for you to have travelled to that place to get those medical services.
. . .
Travel expenses (at least 80 km) – the cost of the travel expenses, including accommodations, meals, and parking, when a person needs to travel at least 80 kilometres (one way) from their home to get medical services.
 

dapaterson

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Travelling on duty to a medical appointment is not transportation assistance or any similar benefit.

It is duty travel. Governed by the CFTDTI. Not subject to the whims of local changes.
 
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