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Charlotte Amalie
Thursday, August 18, 2022
HomeNewsArchivesLIBURD: PUT FREQUENT FLYER MILES TO GOOD USE

LIBURD: PUT FREQUENT FLYER MILES TO GOOD USE

One senator has a unique idea for helping young people to travel for academic and athletic competitions. Sen. Almando "Rocky" Liburd, at-large senator, has suggested using the frequent flyer miles accumulated by government workers who travel at government expense.
"We have our students all over the place begging and we're supposed to be helping these kids. Every time they want to go someplace, they have to go out hustling to do it," Liburd told the V.I. Independent.
Liburd has drafted legislation and will soon circulate it to his colleagues for co-sponsorship.
Liburd told the Independent he expects criticism from government employees who are used to having the miles for their personal travel.
Liburd told St. Thomas Source he doesn't expect to get much support from other senators either, though he didn't say why. It could be because they too use the frequent flier miles they accumulate on taxpayer-financed travel.
Liburd defended his proposal by saying, "We are in a tight economic situation. This is a painless way to alleviate some of the financial burden on the government. We spend between $75,000 and $85,000 a year just on inter-island travel."
Liburd said the details had not been worked out with the airlines yet, but he had staff working on it.
"It can't be that difficult," he said. "We'll find a way to make it work. I really think we can."
He said Finance would monitor the program. "They write the check, so they are the logical ones to track the miles."
Brenda Boone, general manager for American Airlines in St. Thomas, has been off-island all week and could not be reached for comment.

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One senator has a unique idea for helping young people to travel for academic and athletic competitions. Sen. Almando "Rocky" Liburd, at-large senator, has suggested using the frequent flyer miles accumulated by government workers who travel at government expense.
"We have our students all over the place begging and we're supposed to be helping these kids. Every time they want to go someplace, they have to go out hustling to do it," Liburd told the V.I. Independent.
Liburd has drafted legislation and will soon circulate it to his colleagues for co-sponsorship.
Liburd told the Independent he expects criticism from government employees who are used to having the miles for their personal travel.
Liburd told St. Thomas Source he doesn't expect to get much support from other senators either, though he didn't say why. It could be because they too use the frequent flier miles they accumulate on taxpayer-financed travel.
Liburd defended his proposal by saying, "We are in a tight economic situation. This is a painless way to alleviate some of the financial burden on the government. We spend between $75,000 and $85,000 a year just on inter-island travel."
Liburd said the details had not been worked out with the airlines yet, but he had staff working on it.
"It can't be that difficult," he said. "We'll find a way to make it work. I really think we can."
He said Finance would monitor the program. "They write the check, so they are the logical ones to track the miles."
Brenda Boone, general manager for American Airlines in St. Thomas, has been off-island all week and could not be reached for comment.