SPECIAL REPORT

Political Grapevine: Regional VA director's shocking moving expenses

Now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine:

Moving Heaven and Earth

We all know moving is a hassle and expenses can add up fast, but one federal employee claims to have racked up a nearly $300,000 tab that you paid for. The money went toward her move when she was transferred from D.C. just 140 miles up the road to Philadelphia last year.

The Philadelphia Inquirer reports Diana Rubens became director of the embattled Philadelphia VA regional benefits office. The VA says there was nothing inappropriate about it, but could not supply the Inquirer with a breakdown of where all that money went.

Federal policy allows for moving-related expenses including house hunting, moving, terminating leases, and meals and temporary housing for employees' families.

Parking Lot Faux Pas

DC's delegate to Congress has come under fire this week for committing what might be one of the worst parking jobs of all time. Tonight, she pleads guilty as charged.

CQ Roll Call obtained video showing Eleanor Holmes Norton pulling into a diagonal parking space from the wrong direction Wednesday. Despite multiple attempts, she wasn't able to rectify the situation, before giving up and leaving those unfortunate enough to be parked on either side of her to exit at their own risk.

It didn't take long for the video to go viral. Norton confesses she could have done better. She says she's signed up for parking lessons and will look into getting a self-parking car.

Another Direction

In case you missed it, Zayn Malik -- a member of the popular British boy band One Direction -- announced this week that he's leaving the band. Some of his droves of adoring fans took the news hard. Really hard.

The Telegraph reports a UK law firm that provides legal advice on workplace rights has received hundreds of calls from companies asking what to do about employees asking for compassionate leave -- time off -- to grieve Malik's departure from the band. The firm says the calls come from people of all ages -- male and female. Their advice? Deny the request or make them use vacation days.