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DepEd Releases 2019 Guidelines on Official Local Travels

September 2, 2019

DepEd Order No. 22, s. 2019

GUIDELINES ON OFFICIAL LOCAL TRAVELS IN THE DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION

To:

Undersecretaries
Assistant Secretaries
Bureau and Service Directors
Regional Directors
Schools Division Superintendents
Public Elementary and Secondary School Heads
All Others Concerned

  1. Pursuant to Section 21 of Executive Order No. 77, s. 2019 dated March 15, 2019 entitled Prescribing Rules and Regulations and Rates of Expenses and Allowances for Official Local and Foreign Travels of Government Personnel, this DepEd Order is hereby issued to adopt and conform to its provisions and to reiterate and/or amend existing policies, guidelines and procedures on official local travels of its officials and employees. The guidelines on foreign travels shall be issued separately.
  2. For more information, please contact the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Finance through email address [email protected] or through telephone nos. at (02) 637-4611 and (02) 633-8925.
  3. Immediate dissemination of and strict compliance with this Order is directed.

LEONOR MAGTOLIS BRIONES
Secretary

2019 DEPED GUIDELINES ON OFFICIAL LOCAL TRAVELS

I. RATIONALE

Executive Order No. (EO) 77, s. 2019 dated 15 March 2019 entitled “Prescribing Rules and Regulations and Rates of Expenses and Allowances for Official Local and Foreign Travels of Government Personnel” directs all agencies to issue its own set of internal guidelines that would “(i.a) provide additional safeguards as are best suited to agency conditions, (i.b) address agency peculiarities, and (i.c) ensure the judicious use of public funds”.

II. SCOPE OF THE POLICY

This DepEd Order provides updates on existing rules and regulations on official local travels of DepEd officials and employees of the Central Office (CO), Regional Offices (ROs), Schools Division Offices (SDOs) and schools. It contains travel authorization and travel expense payment procedures, computations of the allowable Transportation Expenses and Miscellaneous Expenses, Daily Travel Expenses, the approving authorities at all governance levels, the process flow, standard forms, and other documents consistent with the requirements under EO 77, s. 2019.

III. POLICY STATEMENT

This Order will serve as guide for approval of DepEd officials and employees on their local travels including the payment of their allowable travel expense claims. This shall also help streamline the procedures and provide relevant control measures to ensure efficiency, effectiveness and economy in the utilization of funds alloted for travel expenses. This policy applies to official local travels of officials and employees of the CO, ROs, SDOs and schools.

IV. DEFINITION OF TERMS

For the purpose of this Order, the following terms are defined as follows:

(a) Daily Travel Expenses (DTE) – the amounts authorized to cover expenses for local travel, which consist of (i) costs for hotel accommodation or lodging, including the prescribed taxes and services charges, (ii) meals, and (iii) incidental expenses, including cost for local or inland transportation and reasonable miscellaneous expenses at the place of assignment.

(b) Official Business – refers to official travel wherein the Transportation Expenses and Miscellaneous Expenses, and Daily Travel Expenses incurred, including salaries and other benefits, while on travel, shall be funded by DepEd or by any other government entities.

(c) Official Time – refers to official travel wherein no government expenses shall be incurred/spent, except for the payment of salaries and other benefits of the official or employee who is on travel.

(d) Permanent Official Station – the place where the office or regular place of business/work of an official employee is expected to stay most of the time as required by the nature and the duties and responsibilities of the position of such official or employee.

(e) Transportation Expenses – the actual fares of the authorized modes of transportation (e.g., land, sea and air) for local travels from the permanent official station to the destination or place of assignment and back.

V. GUIDELINES AND PROCEDURES

A. Official Local Travel

1. Official local travels under this Order shall cover only those which meet the following criteria:

a. It is essential to the effective performance of an official or employee’s mandates or functions;

b. It is required to meet the needs of the Department or there is substantial benefit to be derived by the Department;

c. The presence of the official or employee is critical to the outcome of the meeting, conference, seminar, consultation or any official activity to be attended; and

d. The projected expenses are not excessive or involve minimum expenditure.

2. All officials authorized to approve local travels shall ensure that the travel shall entail minimum travel cost/expenses. Hence, all forms of communications, such as, but not limited to telephone calls, electronic mails, social media, teleconferencing and videoconferencing or submission of briefs and position papers, as alternative to travels, must be explored, provided, these do not compromise national security and confidentiality of official communications.

B. Signing Authorities on Official Local Travels

1. The official local travels of the Secretary, as head of the agency, need not be approved by higher authorities, pursuant to Section 4 (a) of EO 77, s. 2019.

2. Using the Authority to Travel form (see Annex A), the official local travel of shall be approved by the following:

3. Travel authority is hereby granted to all Regional Directors, Assistant Regional Directors and Schools Division Superintendents, including officers-in-charge of said positions, upon invitation of the secretariat concerned, to attend National Management Committee Meetings and Regional Coordination Meetings. Hence, the issuance of individual travel authorities shall not be required.

Said travels are considered absolutely necessary in the performance of their assignments, thus, claims for reimbursement of actual accommodation expenses are authorized, subject to the other conditions and requirements specified herein.

C. Procedures and Supporting Documents for Securing Travel Authority, Cash Advance and Payment of Claims for Official Local Travels

1. The official or employee concerned shall accomplish and submit an Authority to Travel form not later than three (3) working days prior to the event together with the following supporting documents to the office of the signing/approving authority/ies for consideration and approval:

a. Signed Memorandum/Letter/Order/Invitation or other communication relevant to the DepEd or non-DepEd activity/event for the purpose of being a participant/guest/resource person/lecturer/visitor;

b. Approved AR/ATC, or Proof of Source of Funds to signify that funds are earmarked for the travel expenses to be incurred; and

c. Itinerary of Travel.

Should the request be submitted or received beyond the prescribed period, a written justification must be appended.

2. Cash advance for travel may be granted to the official or employee upon request, and upon submission to the Budget Division/Section/Unit for obligation and then to the Accounting Division/Section/Unit of the approved documentary requirements enumerated under Sec. C.l.a to C.l.c. However, no new or additional Cash Advance for travel expenses shall be granted unless the previous cash advance has been liquidated.

3. Claims for payment or reimbursement of allowable expenses for local travel (on official business) shall be forwarded to the Budget Division/Section/Unit for obligation and then to the Accounting Division/Section/Unit for preaudit. The travel expense claim must be submitted together with the approved documentary requirements enumerated under Sec. C.l.a to C.l.c, and the following:

a. Certificate of Travel Completed;

b. Certificate of Appearance;

c. Corresponding Hotel Bill or Invoice/Receipt (if claiming for actual accommodation expenses); Transportation Ticket (plane, bus, ship, etc.) or any equivalent document; Reimbursement Expense Receipt; and

d. Payment of travel claims shall be obligated through issuance of Obligation Request and Status (ORS) by the Budget Division/Section/Unit and paid by the Cashier Section/Unit through the issuance of Check or LDDAP-ADA. Signing authorities on the ORS and LDDAP-ADA shall be in accordance with existing policies on signing authorities.

4. For activities/events/errands that would require leaving from or going out of the permanent station or workplace during office hours within the day, a Locator Slip (Annex B) duly approved by the Head of Office or his/her Authorized Representative, and countersigned by the authorized personnel of the office visited, shall be used. A Certificate of Appearance from the office visited may be secured in case such portion was left unsigned by the person visited.

The accomplished and signed Locator Slip shall serve as the authority to travel and may be used for reimbursement of actual transportation expenses only. In no case shall this be used for personal business.

D. Travelling Expenses

1. Official local travel to destinations beyond the 50-kilometer radius from the permanent official station shall be allowed the following expenses:

a. Transportation Expenses and Miscellaneous Expenses. The allowable transportation expenses and reasonable miscellaneous expenses (e.g., terminal fees, parking fees, road tolls, etc.) from the permanent official station to the destination or place of assignment shall cover the following areas:

i. From the office or residence to the point of embarkation, and vice versa;

ii. From the point of embarkation to the point of disembarkation in the place of destination, and vice versa; and

iii. From the point of disembarkation to the office of destination or place of assignment in the field, and vice versa.

The transportation expenses and reasonable miscellaneous expenses shall be in addition to the daily travel expenses under Section D.l.b of this Order.

Personnel concerned shall not be entitled to transportation expenses for the entire trip or portion of such trip where government vehicle was used.

If a private vehicle is used, no reimbursement of the cost of gasoline and fuel shall be allowed. The official or employee concerned, however, is entitled to the equivalent cost of the customary mode of transportation.

b. Daily Travel Expenses (DTE).

b. 1 The maximum allowable DTE of DepEd personnel, regardless of rank and position, shall be the following rates:

b.2 Claims for payment of DTE as provided under Section D.l.b hereof shall not be required to present bills and receipts.

DESTINATION MAXIMUM DTE
Cluster IRegions I, II, III, V, VIII, IX,
XII, XIII, BARMM
P1,500
Cluster IIRegions VI, VII, X, XI, CARP1,800
Cluster IIIRegions IV-A, IV-B, NCRP2,200

c. Apportioned Travel Expenses. The allowable DTE for travel beyond 50-kilometer radius from the permanent official station shall be based on the following apportionment:

PARTICULARSPERCENTAGETO COVER
Day of arrival at point of destination (regardless of time) and succeeding day/s thereof on official business100%50% – hotel/lodging
30% – meals
20% – incidental expenses
Day of departure for permanent official station (regardless of time) if other than date of arrival50%30% – meals
20% – incidental expenses

d. Travel Expenses in Excess of Authorized Travel Rates. Claims for reimbursement of actual accommodation expenses (excluding expenses for valets, room attendants, laundry, pressing, haircuts, and similar services furnished by hotels) in excess of the accommodation component of the DTE may be allowed, but in no case shall the difference exceed one hundred percent (100%) of such component of the prescribed DTE rate, and only upon:

i. Submission of certification by the Approving Authority under B.2 of this guideline as absolutely necessary in the performance of an assignment; and

ii. Presentation of bills and receipts. A Certification or Affidavit of Loss shall not be considered as appropriate replacement for loss bills and receipts.

e. Precluding Double Payment of Travel Expenses. To preclude double payment, the corresponding portion of the DTE shall not be allowed when the fare paid for transportation includes meals and/or quarters en route, or where meals and/or lodging are paid for or furnished by the DepEd or other parties.

e.1 However, the traveler may claim meal reimbursement upon submission of a written justification and documentary support if:

i. The traveler is unable to consume the meal provided because of medical requirements or religious beliefs.

ii. The traveler purchased substitute meal(s) in order to satisfy medical requirements or religious beliefs.

iii. The traveler was unable to take part in the provided meal due to the conflict of official business.

iv. Other analogous circumstances.

Complimentary meals included in the accommodation does not affect the maximum meal expenses.

e.2 In case of invited DepEd resource speakers, advisers or Secretariat to national conferences, conventions, symposia, fora seminars, meetings and other similar events managed by private organizations, associations or unions, the travel expenses shall be shouldered by the inviting agency or organization, unless otherwise authorized by the DepEd Secretary.

2. For official travel destinations within 50-kilometer radius from the permanent official station, the following expenses shall be allowed:

a. Actual transportation expenses not exceeding the rates provided under D.l.a, as well as the DTE under D.l.b may be authorized. Provided, that the personnel concerned shall stay in the place of assignment and does not commute daily from the place of assignment to the place of residence or permanent official station and back. The claim for hotel/lodging expense shall be substantiated by a hotel bill or invoice to prove that the official or employee stayed in the place of assignment for the whole duration of the official travel.

b. Personnel on official travel who commute daily from the place of assignment to the place of residence or permanent official station shall be allowed of the following expenses:

i. Actual fare at the prevailing rates of authorized modes of transportation from the permanent official station to the place of assignment and back;

ii. Meals in an amount not exceeding the thirty percent (30%) of the authorized meal component of the DTE as indicated in Section D. l.c hereof.

Presentation of transportation ticket or any equivalent document shall be required as proof of actual travel undertaken.

c. An employee receiving Transportation Allowance (TA) either on commutable or reimbursable form, shall not be entitled to reimbursement of transportation expenses.

3. Mode of Transportation and Type of Accommodation.

a. The Approving Official on the Authority to Travel under Section B.2 hereof shall determine the mode of transportation and type of hotel/lodging to be availed, which in all cases shall be the most economical and efficientr

b. As a general rule, only the ordinary public conveyance or customary modes of transportation shall be used. The use of chartered trips, special hires of public utilities, garage cars, water vessels, and other extraordinary means of transportation shall not be allowed unless justified by the prevailing circumstances, such as but not limited to, carrying large amount of cash, bulky equipment and important documents, inclement weather, accompanying dignitaries or high level government officials, or when time is of the essence.

4. Accommodations. To ensure adequate but reasonably-priced services and amenities, the workshops, seminars, trainings, conferences, and other official activities organized and conducted by the Department shall use DepEd training venues such as the office conference rooms, Regional Education Learning Centers (RELCs), Applied Nutrition Center, ECOTECH Center, National Educators Academy of the Philippines (NEAP), and Baguio Teachers Camp (BTC). It is also encouraged to patronize DOT-accredited accommodations.

If the above facilities are not available on the basis of certification of the authorized official from these venues, the selection of other venues and facilities shall adhere to existing policies and guidelines on procurement.

5. Prohibition against Junkets of DepEd Officials and Employees. All forms of travel junkets shall be strictly prohibited, as per Section 19 of the E.O. No. 77, s. 2019. The taking of a personal leave immediately before or after the official activity is highly discouraged. If travel circumstances, such as the nature of activity, purpose and itinerary, indicate that the trip is mainly intended for personal purposes, no part shall be considered as official.

6. The Head of Office shall ensure that a skeletal workforce is maintained at all times for travels which entail the absence of majority of employees.

7. Travel in Connection with Official Duties Paid for by a Private Source. Official trips partially or fully sponsored or funded by private corporations or private individuals shall be fully disclosed. No official or personal travel of DepEd officials and employees shall be funded directly or indirectly, fully or partially, by private individuals, including suppliers and contractors, with pending request/s or application/s or future dealings with any schools, SDOs, ROs, Bureaus/Services or office of the Department of Education.

This prohibition applies to invitations to travel purportedly to undertake study or assessment of the proponents’ capabilities as such contractors or suppliers.

8. Since the FY 2019 appropriations of DepEd does not include the funding requirement to cover the increase in travel expenses as a result of the implementation of EO 77, s. 2019, heads of offices/units of different governance levels are advised to effect the corresponding adjustment in their FY 2019 Work and Financial Plans (WFP). For FY 2020 and succeeding years, DepEd offices must ensure that the allowable Transportation Expenses, Miscellaneous Expenses and Daily Travel Expenses will be reflected in their Budget Proposals and Work and Financial Plans.

VI. MONITORING AND EVALUATION

a. All offices and accountable officials and personnel thereof shall comply with existing financial reporting guidelines on the use of funds for this purpose.

b. The Budget and Accounting Divisions of the DepEd Central Office, Bureau of Human Resource and Organizational Development, Regional Finance Division and Finance Units of SDOs shall monitor compliance to this Order, conduct review of these guidelines and recommend changes to further improve the implementation of E.O. No. 77, s. 2019.

c. Local travel matters/queries/clarifications not covered by this Order shall be referred to the DepEd Secretary for resolution.

VII. REPEALING CLAUSE AND EFFECTIVITY

All existing Orders and Memoranda inconsistent with this Order are hereby rescinded. The guidelines stated herein shall remain in effect, unless later repealed, amended, or rescinded.

This Order shall take efffect immediately. However, the increased rates of travel expenses and allowances shall take effect upon the effectivity of EO 77, s. 2019, subject to the conditions for the grant thereof.

LEONOR MAGTOLIS BRIONES
Secretary

Download DO No. 22, s. 2019

2019 DepEd Authority to Travel Form

2019 DepEd Authority to Travel Form

DepEd Locator Slip Form

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