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Motor Vehicle Use Guidelines for Executive Branch Nominees or Appointees

The General Services Administration (GSA) is responsible for developing the policies and procedures contributing to improved management and enhanced performance of motor vehicle fleets operated by federal agencies. The management and use of motor vehicles owned and leased by the Federal government are regulated by the Federal Management Regulation (FMR) Part 102-34, entitled "Motor Vehicle Management" and FMR Part 102-5, entitled "Home-to-Work Transportation." Each agency has a Fleet Manager responsible for your agency’s motor vehicle fleet policy.  A list of agency Fleet Managers is located on GSA’s website.

The following is a list of frequently asked questions regarding Government motor vehicles.

1] May I use a Government motor vehicle?

  • A Government vehicle may be used for official purposes to perform your agency’s mission, as authorized by your agency (FMR § 102-34.220). 
  • You may not use a Government vehicle for transportation between your residence and place of employment unless that transportation has been approved in writing by your agency head (FMR § 102-34.225).  The agency head may not delegate this authority (FMR § 102-5.40).
  • Your agency is responsible for making the determination to authorize non-Federal individuals to accompany you in a Government vehicle.
  • If an employee willfully uses, or authorizes the use of, a motor vehicle for other than official purposes, the employee is subject to suspension of at least one month or, up to and including, removal by the head of the agency (FMR § 102-34.240).

2] How do I obtain a motor vehicle?

  • You must limit the motor vehicle body size, engine size, and optional equipment to what is essential to meet your agency’s mission.  In general, with the exception of motor vehicles used by the President and Vice President and motor vehicles for security and highly essential needs, you must purchase or lease midsize (class III) or smaller sedans (FMR § 102-34.45).
  • Your agency's Fleet Manager is responsible for determining how your agency acquires vehicles.  Motor vehicles may be:  1) purchased from a commercial source through GSA; 2) leased by contract or other arrangement from a commercial source for 120 continuous days or more; 3) rented by contract or other arrangement from a commercial source for less than 120 continuous days; 4) leased from GSA's Fleet; or 5) transferred as agency excess with or without cost (see FMR § 102-34.25).
  • Federal agencies are mandated by the Energy Policy Act, Executive Order 13423, and the Energy Independence and Security Act to purchase alternative fuel vehicles (AFV), to increase consumption of alternative fuels, and to reduce petroleum consumption.  Information on Federal fleet requirements are found on the Department of Energy's website (https://federalfleets.energy.gov/).  Information on leasing or purchasing AFV’s from GSA can be found at www.gsa.gov/afv.
  • GSA Fleet also has a program for short term vehicle rentals.  More information about the program can be found in the "GSA Fleet Solutions" section of GSA's site.  GSA Schedule 48 also provides short term rentals, including Zipcar.  More information on this program can be found at www.gsa.gov/rsvp. Both of these programs are for non-temporary duty (TDY) assignments.  For information on rental vehicles for TDY, you may contact the Defense Travel Management Office (DTMO) who maintains the rental car contracts for the Federal government.  The DTMO website is www.defensetravel.dod.mil.

3] What are my responsibilities when I use a Government motor vehicle?

  • You must obey all motor vehicle traffic laws of the state and local jurisdiction, except when the duties of your position require otherwise. You are personally responsible if you violate state or local traffic laws. If you are fined or otherwise penalized for an offense you commit while performing your official duties, but which was not required as part of your official duties, payment is your personal responsibility (FMR § 102-34.250).
  • You must pay parking fees while operating a motor vehicle owned or leased by the Government. However, you can expect to be reimbursed for parking fees incurred while performing official duties (FMR §102-34.255).
  • If you are fined for a parking violation while operating a motor vehicle owned or leased by the Government, you are responsible for paying the fine and will not be reimbursed (FMR § 102-34.256).
  • You are required to obtain the grade (octane rating) of fuel recommended by the motor vehicle manufacturer when fueling motor vehicles owned or leased by the Government (FMR § 102-34.335). Most agencies issue refueling cards with each vehicle, including vehicles leased from GSA Fleet, that are widely accepted at commercial refueling stations throughout the United States.   If you have an AFV, you should make every effort to use the alternative fuel if it is available in your local area.  A list of alternative fuel stations can be found at http://www.eere.energy.gov/afdc/stations/find_station.php.
  • If you are involved in an accident or vehicle incident, you must contact GSA Fleet at (866) 400-0411 if you are operating a GSA Fleet leased vehicle.  If you are operating an agency owned vehicle, you must contact your agency's Fleet Manager.
  • For a GSA Fleet leased vehicle (meaning that it has a Government license plate beginning with the letter "G"), vehicle repairs, service totaling over $100 or any tire and battery replacement, regardless of cost, will be authorized by GSA's Maintenance Control Center at (866) 400-0411.  If you are operating an agency-owned vehicle, please contact your agency's Fleet Manager for guidance and information in this regard.

4] What do I do if I witness a vehicle misuse or reckless driving?

To report the misuse or reckless driving of a government vehicle, please email howsmydriving@gsa.gov and provide the following information:

  • Date of the incident
  • Time of the incident
  • Location of alleged misuse
  • Activity that is the cause of your concern
  • License Plate (EX: GXX-XXXXX for GSA owned vehicles)
    • GSA leased vehicles all have license plates that have the following structure (GXX-XXXXX).  If the license plate does not begin with a G, then it is not owned by GSA; however, if the license plate follows the approved license plate codes for Executive Branch agencies and other federal entities we can forward the report to the owning agency on your behalf.
  • Other helpful information includes:
    • Description of vehicle (color, vehicle type, make/model, etc)
    • Description of driver and passengers
    • Any pictures or video of the incident

For more information visit:   www.gsa.gov/gsafleet and www.gsa.gov/vehiclepolicy.  

 

Federal Government Motor Vehicle Resources

Use of Federal Government Motor Vehicles