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The Official Use of Government Vehicles

Purpose and Presence

When people see a car used for government purposes, particularly when labeled with a government logo, they expect that the vehicle's use contributes to a bona fide government activity. While people accept that government officials travel to perform their business, abusive use of government vehicles for personal benefit is unacceptable to both public and private review.

Official Marking

To warn both employees and give notice to the public, government cars are frequently labeled with documentation stating the vehicle can only be used for "official government business." Additionally, agencies that own the cars promulgate rules specifying car use, fueling, documentation of use, and subjectivity to audits to confirm proper use.

Violations and Discipline

While the mass majority of government employees follow their agency rules regarding government vehicle use, just like in private employment there tends to be a 1 percent that try to break the rules. When caught, usually by comparing mileage, fuel, and log records and finding discrepancies, apprehended employees suffer employment discipline or even termination.
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