Procedure 2-86-2

Meals, Lodging, Travel, Expenses and Other Fees for Travel for State Appropriated and Local Funds [8-13-2016]

Responsible Officer: Chief Financial Officer and Vice President

Sponsoring Department: Procurement Services

Revision Date: 06 July 2017

Errors or changes to: aim@uta.edu

Procedure Objective

Procedure 2-86-2 provides procedural guidelines for the allowances and expenses for meals, lodging, miscellaneous and incidental expenses when traveling on state appropriated or local funds. This procedure distinguishes the difference between state travel rules and local travel rules. This procedure does not apply to UTA employees or students traveling for personal reasons with personal funds.

Rationale

UTA does pay per diem for meals and incidental expenses and utilizes various federal per diem tables to establish daily limits. The chartfield funding source for travel determines whether the chartfield follows state appropriated travel rules or local travel rules. This determination is critical because the state and the local rules for travel allowances and expenditures differ. Moreover, rules for travel allowances and expenditures for domestic and international travel also differ. An employee may request an exception to some portion of the travel rules (this applies only to accounts following UT local rules). However, the request must be documented and have final approval by the Associate Vice President of Business Affairs and Controller. Any exception ultimately granted does not alter the existing travel rules and procedures. See Section II of this procedure for exception requests.

Scope

All UTA employees and students who are traveling for UTA business.

Website Address for This Procedure

RELATED STATUTES, POLICIES, REQUIREMENTS OR STANDARDS

Contacts

If you have any questions about this procedure, contact the following departments:

SubjectOffice NameTelephone NumberEmail/URL
All topics in procedureProcurement Services817-272-2194travelservices@uta.edu
http://www.uta.edu/policy/bac/travel
Website accessAdministrative Information Management817-272-0222aim@uta.edu
http://www.uta.edu/aim

DEFINITIONS

Actual Expenses: Expenses that are reasonable and appropriate to the circumstance. Personal expenses are not included.

Chartfields: Data fields used to segregate accounting information, i/e/ cost center, department, fund, account, business unit, project, activity, and funciton.

Commercial Lodging Establishment: A motel, hotel, inn, apartment, house or similar establishment that provides lodging to the public for pay

Designated Headquarters: The area within a 25-mile radius of the city in which a state employee's place of employment is located.

International Travel: Travel to, in, or from any country outside of the United States or U.S. Territories or Possessions.

Local Funds: All chartfields that are not State Appropriated Fund chartfields. Please check with the head of your department or the account administrator for specific travel or entertainment restrictions which may be placed on individual chartfields within the Local Funds chartfields.

Personal Expenses: Expenses that benefit the employee or spender only and do not benefit the University either directly or indirectly. Also includes inappropriate or excessive expenses that appear to be University related.

UTShare Expense Report: Used to reimburse business travel expenses, and to provide a detailed record of the travel expenses as well as identify the nature of the business conducted.

State Appropriated Funds: Chartfields that are funded by State general revenue. Most state appropriated funded chartfields have a fund of 21xx. State appropriated funded chartfields also appear in other numbered chartfield series.

RESPONSIBILITIES

The Traveler
  • Understands that State Appropriated Funds and Local Funds have different travel rules
  • Follows the appropriate set of travel rules (State or Local) when traveling for university business
  • Refrains from purchasing alcohol with funds generated from student tuition, fees or state appropriations
  • Reviews the correct rate schedules listed for state and local funds
  • Completes An Official Occasion form for all entertainment expenditures
  • Understands that any exceptions granted do not alter or change UT Arlington travel rules or procedures
Associate Vice President for Business Affairs and Controller (or designee)
  • Approves at their discretion requests for exceptions to the University's entertainment and travel rules
Account Administrator
  • Ensures that all travel and charges are appropriate and support the mission of the University.
  • Approves all electronic and paper payments that post to a cost center or project they administer.
Delegated Approval Authority
  • Is an Individual within the unit who has delegate authority from the account administrator

Procedures

 

Section I. Approval Process

Account administrators are responsible for approving all electronic and paper payments that post to a cost center or project they administer. If an account administrator is not available to process electronic or paper approvals, approval authority is assumed by an individual within the unit who has delegated approval authority from the account administrator. For example, in the case of a Director level position, the approval authority is delegated to an Assistant Director. If an account administrator wishes to delegate authority in a manner that is different from this, a request must be emailed to the Chief Financial Officer and Vice President for review.

Section II. Exceptions to any of the Travel and Entertainment Policies and Procedures

There may be occasions when employees want to request an exception to some portion of the travel rules (this applies only to chartfields following UT local rules). Exceptions to any of the travel and entertainment policies must be documented in writing and final approved by the Associate Vice President for Business Affairs and Controller. The request must be submitted using the BA Exceptions Tracker Request menu located in UTA FLOW. Each request should include detailed justification for the exception and the benefit to the University if the exception is granted. Documentation of the request and its disposition will be maintained in the Business Affairs online policy exceptions files. In every case the account administrator is responsible for ensuring that all travel and charges are appropriate and support the mission of the University.

NOTE: The circumstances of the request will be taken under consideration. Any exception ultimately granted does NOT alter the existing travel policy and should not be construed as precedent for allowing repeated exceptions to the existing policy.

Section III. State Appropriated Funds and Local Funds

When determining travel allowances and expenditures one must determine whether their travel will follow State Appropriated Travel Rules or University Travel Rules. This determination is critical because the rules for travel allowances and expenditures differ depending on the funding source. For more information regarding state appropriated funds and local funds please see Request for Travel Authorization and Obtain Permission to Travel (Procedure 2-80-2).

Section IV. Meals and Incidental Expenses Per Diem and Lodging (Contiguous United States) for Local Funds

For meals, incidental expenses, and lodging, all university travelers must use the federal per diem rates provided by the General Services Administration (GSA) for both in-state and out-of-state travel within the contiguous United States. The GSA per diem toolis searchable by city, state or zip code. Cities not appearing on the GSA table may be located within the county for which the rates are listed. If the city is not located within a listed county on the table, use the "Standard Rate" for that state. New rates are set October 1 each year.

Travelers may download the Per Diem app for iPhone, Blackberry and Android - http://www.gsa.gov/portal/content/302273

  1. Travel Meals and Incidental Expenses (M&IE):
    1. Meal Expenses
      1. The University allows per diem for meal expenses based on GSA rates. This must include tax and tip. Departments may invoke policies such as only claiming actuals, but the totals cannot exceed the GSA rate for the location. Itemized receipts are not required.
        Note: Each Expense Report must have attached a screenshot of the GSA Per Diem Rates page that applies to the travel location.
      2. The first and last dates of travel are calculated at 75% of the daily total. If the traveler is traveling for more than 10 hours on the first and/or last date of travel, the traveler can receive the full per diem.
      3. If meals are included with the registration of a conference, the per diem will be calculated as follows:
        • One (1) meal provided by conference: Per diem will be prorated to 75%
        • Two (2) meals provided by conference: Per diem will be prorated to 35%

        Note: Conference agenda must be attached to the expenses report.

    2. Incidental Expenses

      Incidental expenses are limited to $5 per DAY or less, and are for tips given to a baggage handler, valet, hotel staff, etc. Note: This is not for meals.

      Note: The M&IE GSA per diem rate for any location is inclusive of the $5 incidental rate. A traveler cannot claim total M&IE rate, and also claim an additional $5 incidental rate.

      Example: The M&IE rate for a location is $74. The meal rate for that location is $69 and the incidental is $5. The total amount that can be claimed for meals and incidentals is $74.These must be claimed separately on an expense report.

  2. Business/Entertainment Meals in travel status:

    Business/entertainment meal expenses are expenditures that are allowed in order to entertain and conduct business with a customer or client and the traveler. All business/entertainment meals must be reasonable and benefit the University. Reimbursement for meals paid with local funds include the following requirements:

    1. Business/entertainment meals are counted as part of the employee's meal total for the day. Therefore, the traveler can only claim per diem for 2 meals per day, or 75% of the daily total when a business meal will occur as the 3rd.
    2. Business/entertainment meals will only be reimbursed for actuals, and will require an itemized receipt as documentation, no matter the dollar amount. The meal receipt, along with an Official Occasion Expense Form(Form 2-98) must be attached to the employee's UTShare Expense Report, or submitted to Travel Services.
      1. Alcohol is only allowed when purchased and consumed as part of a business/entertainment meal, or if there is a business reason for the purchase.
      2. Alcohol cannot be paid with funds generated from student tuition, fees or state appropriations.
      3. Sales tax and a maximum tip of 20% can be added to the total of the business/entertainment meal.
  3. Lodging:
    1. All lodging is reimbursed for actuals, but cannot exceed the GSA federal per diem rate given for the location. Cities not appearing on the GSA per diem table may be located within a county for which a rate is listed. If the city or county is not listed on the per diem table,use the "Standard Rate" for the state. New rates are set October 1 each year. Additionally, an itemized receipt and a screenshot of the GSA Per Diem Rates page that applies to the travel location must be submitted with Expense Report.
      1. Applicable taxes and fees are in addition to the GSA rate. Reimbursement for taxes is limited to the reimbursable lodging costs.
      2. If the nightly lodging rates vary, the actual total of lodging costs cannot exceed the total of the per diem for the number of designated nights.
    2. Receipts for lodging booked online (Priceline, Orbitz, Travelocity, etc.) may only be used as proof of payment and not as proof of stay.Please note: Some hotels may not automatically provide an itemized receipt if the room was booked online. In this case it may be necessary for the traveler to ask for one, or an acknowledgement that the booked stay was completed.
    3. Lodging receipts must show: Commercial lodging establishment name, commercial lodging address, daily itemization of all charges, name of the employee/occupant, single room rate, and proof of payment.
    4. Texas state sales tax will not be reimbursed. Traveler must present to the commercial lodging establishment a Texas Hotel Occupancy Tax Exemption Certificate (Form 2-95).
    5. An employee may not be reimbursed for lodging expenses incurred within the employee's designated headquarters.
    6. A traveler may pay for, and be reimbursed for, another university employee's or student's lodging expense (unless the travel expense is charged to a state chartfield fund 21xx).
      1. The receipt must list the names of the university employees or students included on the receipt. Included in the expense report must be an attestation statement by the employee/student/traveler whose expenses were paid stating they will not submit a claim for travel expenses already reimbursed to the employee who paid the expense.
  4. Conference Lodging
    1. If a traveler must use the commercial lodging establishment of the conference, supporting documentation must be submitted with the Expense Report.
    2. Documentation can be in the form of a registration, advertisement, agenda, etc., but must reflect that the conference and hotel are affiliated.
Section V. Foreign Travel, including Alaska, Hawaii, and U.S. Possessions for Local Funds
  1. Employees are reimbursed for actual meal expenses for foreign travel. If meals and incidental expenses (M&IE) exceed the maximum rates based on federal travel regulations, receipts are required.

    Note: Incidentals on foreign travel is not the same as incidentals on contiguous United States travel. Foreign incidentals are the same as Miscellaneous Business Expenses and Fees on contiguous United States travel.

    The rate schedule for travel to, in or from Alaska, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, American Samoa, Guam, Midway, the Northern Marianas, U.S. Virgin Islands, Wake Island, and other U.S. territories and possessions outside the contiguous United States is the Defense Travel Management Office Per Diem Rates Query found at: http://www.defensetravel.dod.mil/site/perdiemCalc.cfm

    The rate schedule for travel to, in or from all foreign countries including Canada and the United Mexican States, outside the contiguous United States and those territories and possessions referenced above, may be found at: http://www.defensetravel.dod.mil/site/perdiemCalc.cfm

    If a business/entertainment meal is claimed for the traveler and other person(s), the itemized meal receipt must be attached to the UTShare Expense Report for the Traveler/Employee if claiming more than the daily maximum. The itemized meal receipt along with an Official Occasion Expense Form (Form 2-98) for persons other than traveler/employee is to be attached to the UTShare Expense Report, or provided in paper form to Travel Services, to reimburse the traveler/employee for the other person(s). All business/entertainment expenditures must be reasonable and benefit the University. Reimbursement for meals paid with local funds includes the following requirements:

    1. Alcohol is not allowable as part of regular travel meals.
    2. Business/Entertainment Meal Expenditures for Person(s) other than Traveler:

      Please visit http://www.defensetravel.dod.mil/Docs/perdiem/browse/Allowances/Per_Diem_Rates/Text_Only/OCONUS-Overseas/2016/ovs16-06.pdfto view by State/Country and Location the Proportional Meal Rate that will be reimbursed per person for business/entertainment meal expenditures for persons other than traveler. Sales tax will be reimbursed and a maximum tip of 20% can be added.

  2. All lodging expenses will be reimbursed for all travel outside the contiguous United States. Actual lodging expenses will require itemized receipts. Refer to International Travel (Procedure 2-83-2) for guidelines on currency conversion documentation required for international receipts.

Section VI. Miscellaneous Business Travel Fees and Incidental Expenses for Local Funds
  1. Miscellaneous Travel Fees:
    1. Registration Fees: Registration fees are reimbursable for attending official business conferences, seminars and other meetings. Receipts are to be obtained and attached to the Expense Report, or provided in paper form to Travel Services. The full name of the meeting should be typed on the Expense Report (please do not use abbreviations). The Expense Report must provide the date of the meeting, the sponsor, where it was held, and what benefits will inure to the University. The receipt shall include a photocopy of the agenda or program identifying all activities included in the registration fee. Entertainment, excursions or other personal expense items are not reimbursable. There must be a direct relationship between the duties performed by the employee and the type of conference attended.
    2. Cancellation Charges: Cancellation charges for "no shows" due to personal reasons are not reimbursable. When claiming reimbursement for cancellation charges for valid business reasons, receipts or invoices are required to document each cancellation charge submitted for reimbursement. Cancellation charges for airfare paid by the traveler will only be reimbursed if approved by the Associate Vice President for Business Affairs and Controller.
    3. Dues and Membership Fees: Dues or membership fees that are included in a registration fee can be reimbursed on an expense report.
    4. Allowable business travel expenses (Partial List) Receipts Required
      1. Rental car charge
      2. Gasoline for rental car or university-owned vehicle
      3. Parking Charge - hotel, airport, etc.
      4. Toll charge
      5. Transportation - bus, subway, taxi, shuttle, etc.
        Note: Gratuities cannot exceed 20%.
      6. Departure tax in foreign countries
      7. Visa for foreign travel
      8. Currency exchange
      9. Inoculations
      10. Passport
    5. Non-Allowable business related travel expenses include, but are not limited to:

      1. Gasoline and repair costs for privately-owned vehicles
      2. Excess baggage charges for personal belongings
      3. Any other personal expense items such as, cleaning or laundry, alcoholic beverages, tours, sporting events, kennel or boarding charges for a pet, babysitting or daycare charges for children.
      4. Any expense not required for official state business

  2. Incidental Expenses (Contiguous United States):

    Incidental expenses are limited to $5 per DAY or less, and are for tips given to a baggage handler, valet, hotel staff, etc. NOTE: This is not for meals.

Section VII. Using State Appropriated Funds for Travel
  1. State of Texas Travel Allowance Guide and Travel Management Program: Travel using State Appropriated Funds must follow the State of Texas Travel Allowance Guide which is available on the Internet at the following address:

    https://fmx.cpa.state.tx.us/fmx/travel/textravel/index.php

    The State Travel Management Program can be accessed at the following address:
    http://www.window.state.tx.us/procurement/prog/stmp/

  2. Out-of-State Travel (Contiguous United States): According to the General Appropriations Act (GAA) state employees are reimbursed for actual meal and lodging expenses for out-of-state travel up to the maximum rates based on federal travel regulations. The rate schedule for out-of-state locations within the contiguous United States may be found at: http://www.gsa.gov/portal/category/21287. The meal and lodging rates specified in the schedule listed above are not flat per diem rates. Employees may only be reimbursed for their actual meal and lodging expenses. Reimbursement for meals and Incidental Expenses (M&IE) up to listed maximums will require a description of the expense, but no receipts are required. Reimbursement for lodging expenses up to listed maximums will require itemized receipts.
  3. Travel to, in or from Alaska, Hawaii, and U.S. Territories and Possessions: Employees are reimbursed for actual meal expenses. If meals and incidental expenses (M&IE) exceed the maximum rates based on federal travel regulations, receipts are required. The rate schedule for travel to Alaska, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, American Samoa, Guam, Midway, the Northern Marianas, U.S. Virgin Islands, Wake Island, and other possessions outside the contiguous United States may be found at: http://www.defensetravel.dod.mil/site/perdiemCalc.cfm

    Travelers are entitled to be reimbursed for actual lodging expenses incurred while conducting university business. All lodging expenses will require itemized receipts

  4. International travel to, in or from Other Foreign countries: The rate schedule for travel to, in or from all foreign countries, including Canada and Mexico may be found at: http://www.defensetravel.dod.mil/site/perdiemCalc.cfm.

    A traveler is entitled to be reimbursed for actual lodging and meal expenses incurred while conducting university business in a foreign country. All lodging expenses will require itemized receipts. If actual expenses for meals and incidental expenses exceed the daily limits in the federal rate schedule, then receipts are required to obtain reimbursement above those limits. Refer to International Travel (Procedure 2-83-2) for guidelines on currency conversion documentation required for international receipts.

  5. Alcohol Prohibition: Alcohol is not allowable as part of travel meals.
  6. Tips or Gratuities on Meals are Not Reimbursable: Tips or gratuities paid in conjunction with meal expenses are not reimbursable.
  7. Travelers must ensure that each travel arrangement is the most cost effective considering all relevant circumstances. The traveler must complete and submit all documentation showing that a cost comparison analysis was done for personal vehicle mileage versus the cost of an airline ticket or rental car. Travel Services reserves the right to reimburse at the lower of the two rates.
  8. Mileage: For official point-to-point mileage, travelers may use odometer readings or the mapping service MapQuest. Mileage will be reimbursed in accordance with GSA Privately Owned Vehicle (POV) Mileage Reimbursement Rate, which is usually updated January 1 of each year. Archived mileage rates may be viewed at POV Mileage Rate Archived

Section VIII. Non-Overnight/Designated Headquarters Travel
  1. A travel authorization is not required for this type of travel.
  2. Qualifying Conditions for Non-Overnight/Designated Headquarters Travel: In order to qualify the following must apply:
    1. No overnight stay.
    2. No rental car or airline ticket expense or reimbursed.
    3. Parking fees, tolls, and other related expenses require a receipt. If a receipt is not available, please follow the lost receipt process outlined in Procedure 2-90-2, Section V.B..
    4. Registration fee is reimbursable on the same Expense Report as the related mileage. Receipt showing the traveler's name, name of the organization, date and payment received must be clearly stated on the receipt.
    5. Incidental expenses while away from the University may also be reimbursed on the same Expense Report. Example: battery for lap top that is needed for meeting, light bulb for overhead used in meeting etc. Original receipts are required. Texas State Sales Tax is not reimbursable. A Texas Sales and Use Tax Exemption Certification(Form 2-5) must be presented with each purchase.
  3. Day travel longer than 6 hours:

    If day travel is longer than 6 hours, all university travelers must use the federal rates provided by the General Services Administration (GSA). The GSA per diem tool is searchable by city, state or zip code. If the city is not available on the table, use the "Standard Rate" for Texas. New rates are set October 1 each year.

    Travelers may download the Per Diem app for iPhone, Blackberry and Android - http://www.gsa.gov/portal/content/302273

    1. The University allows per diem for meal expenses based on GSA rates. This must include tax and tip. Departments may invoke policies such as only claiming actuals, but the totals cannot exceed the GSA rate for the location. Itemized receipts are not required.

    2. The total must be calculated at 75% of the daily total.
    3. Alcohol is not allowed.
  4. Mileage:
    1. Mileage is reimbursable. This does include designated headquarters mileage. A detailed mileage report that supports the origination point (headquarters), destination (name of city) and total miles driven must be attached to the UTShare Expense Report. The calculation options given below are the only accepted methods.
    2. Calculation of official point-to-point mileage.
      1. Non-Overnight Mileage Detailed Report(Form 2-96):
        To be used when an employee uses their vehicle's odometer to calculate and report mileage. This referenced form must be attached to the UTShare Expense Report. If using this option, a print-out from an online mapping tool or MapQuest is not required.
      2. Online Mapping Tool for Point-to-Point Calculations
        If an employee is being reimbursed using state appropriated funds, the University's only allowable mapping service is MapQuest. If local funds are being used, mileage computed by any online mapping tool is allowed. A copy of the point-to-point calculation must be attached to the UTShare Expense Report. If using this option, Non-Overnight Mileage Detailed Report (Form 2-96) is not required.
      3. Mileage will be reimbursed in accordance with GSA Privately Owned Vehicle (POV) Mileage Reimbursement Rate, which is usually updated January 1 of each year. Archived mileage rates may be viewed at POV Mileage Rate Archived


    3. Monthly mileage reimbursements: It is preferred that the employee report multiple trips using the Non-Overnight Mileage Detailed Report (Form 2-96) and attach to the UTShare Expense Report
Section IX. Combining University and Personal Business - Local Funds
  1. If a traveler combines personal travel with official university business travel, the traveler is only allowed reimbursement for meals, lodging or car rental that occurred on official business days.
  2. Overnight meal and lodging expenses incurred while traveling to, and staying at, a duty location the day before official university business begins at the duty location may be reimbursed at the discretion of the traveler's supervisor, if he/she deems the extra day appropriate to serve a business need or to qualify for an airfare discount. Overnight meal and lodging expenses incurred while traveling to and staying at a duty location for more than one day before official university business begins at the duty location are not reimbursable unless the expenses are incurred to qualify for a discount airfare, or traveling to the duty location reasonably requires more than one day. Travel to a duty location more than one day before business begins will require justification and/or cost comparison in order for expenses to be reimbursed.
  3. Overnight meal and lodging expenses incurred while staying at and traveling from a duty location the day after official university business ends at the duty location may be reimbursed at the discretion of the traveler's supervisor, if he/she deems the extra day appropriate to serve a business need or to qualify for an airfare discount. Overnight meal and lodging expenses incurred while staying at and traveling from a duty location more than one day after official university business ends at the duty location are not reimbursable unless the expenses are incurred to qualify for a discount airfare, or traveling to the duty location reasonably requires more than one day. Travel from a duty location more than one day after business ends will require justification and/or cost comparison in order for the expenses to be reimbursed.
  4. An employee who uses a rented motor vehicle for both personal business and official university business may be reimbursed only for the portion of the rental charges that is attributable to official university business.

Forms and Tools/Online Processes

Texas Sales and Use Tax Exemption Certification(Form 2-5)

Texas Hotel Occupancy Tax Exemption Certificate(Form 2-95)

Non-Overnight Mileage Detailed Report (Form 2-96)

Travel Voucher Cover Sheet (Form 2-100)

Business Affairs Training UPK's

State of Texas Travel Allowance Guide

State Travel Management Program

Department of Defense Rate Schedule

Department of State Rate Schedule

Appendices

None