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On July 16, 2020, the Agency briefed NATCA regarding requirements for domestic travel during the phased return to the workplace due to COVID-19.  Under the phased return to the workplace, the Agency will approve overnight domestic travel only if it is mission essential, as determined by the Line of Business (LOB) or Staff Office (SO).  The FAA Administrator has delegated approval authority for domestic travel to the heads of the LOBs/SOs, who in turn may delegate approval authority to the Director Level.  Front-line supervisors are not currently approving domestic travel.

The LOB/SO must submit a request for review of the mission-essential domestic travel to the FAA Incident Management Team (IMT).  The IMT reviews local conditions in the destination area (e.g., local quarantine orders, hotel and restaurant availability, county infection level) and submits a recommendation to the approving official.  The approving official may use the IMT recommendation to approve or deny the travel.  NATCA asked if an employee’s desire to minimize potential exposure to COVID-19 is sufficient to justify travel via personally owned vehicle (at a higher cost to the government) instead of via commercial air. 

NATCA has submitted proposals regarding this issue.

POCs: Region X RVP Brad Davidson, Chief of Staff Dean Iacopelli, Director of Safety and Technology Tom Adcock, Deputy Director of Safety and Technology Mark McKelligan, Director of Labor Relations Nicole Vitale, and Labor Relations Attorney Grant Mulkey

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