Oregon Will Not Pay Travel Reimbursement to Remote Workers

remote workers reimbursement
Photo by Alejandro Escamilla on Unsplash

Tim Knopp, an Oregon senator, submitted a measure with support from ALL 30 senators of Oregon. Senate Bill (SB) 853 forbids state workers who work remotely full-time and reside in another state from getting travel reimbursement.

“Last summer, I heard from taxpayers and state employees alike who were outraged at the practice of reimbursing travel for out-of-state, highly-paid government workers to be flown back to Oregon to do their job at taxpayer expense. It’s a fundamental equity issue. Most local state employees don’t get paid to commute to work. I’m thankful to have 29 Senate co-sponsors and impressive bipartisan support in the House. Now begins the work of advancing it through the process.” Tim Knopp, Senator

According to SB 853, state workers who reside full-time in another state would have to cover their own travel expenses when they return to Oregon on official business. The Oregon taxpayers shouldn’t be responsible for covering the cost when these workers must travel for meetings or other work-related activities.

The Oregon Department of Administrative Services (DAS) reported that the state of Oregon employs about 40,000 people. Of the 40,000 state employees, 7,691 work remotely full-time and almost 500 reside outside of the state while working remotely full-time.

The Oregon Lottery, the State Treasury, the Secretary of State’s Office, and the Department of Justice do not have any remote workers on the DAS list. These workers are categorized as “full-time remote,” which indicates that they have obtained authorization to live and work in another state and are now only required to spend a maximum of eight days a year in Oregon.

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