Rockdale BOC mulls travel policy change

CONYERS — An amendment to the county travel policy proposed by Rockdale Commissioner JaNice Van Ness would require employees and elected officials to pay for their own travel fare upgrades.

Van Ness said the policy currently requires employees and elected officials to travel in the most economical means possible. The amendment clarifies that this would require individuals to pay for their own upgrades.

Van Ness said the policy change was proposed in response to fare upgrades funded by the county on two trips taken by Chairman Richard Oden. The county paid $539 for an upgrade to Oden’s round-trip flight to Taiwan in August on an economic development trip and additional funds for another upgraded flight to Washington, D.C. According to the county, the flight upgrade to Taiwan was purchased in order for the chairman to be as comfortable as possible for the 15-plus-hour flights due to the chairman’s past injuries.

Oden was absent from the meeting Tuesday.

Van Ness also said the policy amendment would require tickets to be purchased in a reasonable timeframe in order to get the best possible rates.

Commissioners only discussed the policy amendment Tuesday. A final version will be on the agenda for a first reading at the county’s next regular meeting.