Board of Governors Policy 14
SECTION 1. GENERAL
1.1 Scope: This policy governs instate, out-of-state and international travel hereinafter referred to as "travel", for all individuals traveling on behalf of or at the request of Shepherd College including faculty, staff, students and those interviewing for positions with the College if travel is being reimbursed. Travel expenses for contractors or consultants are governed by this policy if the contract calls for reimbursement in accordance with College travel regulations.
1.2 Authority: WV Code §12-3-11
1.3 Effective Date: January 16, 2003
1.4 Definitions: All references herein to "The Board" shall mean the Shepherd College Board of Governors. References herein to the "Chief Procurement Officer" shall refer to such person as may be so designated, from time to time, by the President.
SECTION 2. PROVISIONS APPLICABLE ONLY TO THE BOARD
2.1 The Board may authorize payment for traveling expenses incurred by any person, and her or his spouse when appropriate, who is invited to visit the campus or any other facility under the control of the Board, to be interviewed concerning his or her possible employment by the Board or agent thereof. Authorization for such payment shall be given by the Board or the President.
2.2 Payment may be authorized for: (1) all or part of the reasonable expenses incurred by a person newly employed by the Board in moving such employee's household furniture, effects, and immediate family to the employee's place of employment; and (2) all or part of the reasonable expenses incurred by an employee in moving his or her household furniture, effects and immediate family as the result of reassignment of the employee which is considered desirable, advantageous to and in the best interest of the Board; provided, that no part of the moving expenses of an employee shall be paid more frequently than once in twelve months. Authorization for such payment shall be given by the Board or the President.
SECTION 3. DELEGATION OF AUTHORITY AND RESPONSIBILITIES
3.1 Authority to manage, approve or disapprove travel and travel related expenses is delegated by the Board to the President and to the President's designee, the Chief Procurement Officer. The Chief Procurement Officer may delegate authority to others within the Office of Procurement Services to act as his or her designee(s) for authorizing and approving travel and travel related expenses.
3.2 Travel may be authorized only for official business and only if the academic or administrative unit has the financial resources to reimburse the traveler for travel expenses.
3.3 The responsibility to audit a traveler's expense account settlement lies with the Office of Procurement Services. Approval of a traveler's expense account settlement by the Office of Procurement Services means that the expense account settlement meets all criteria established by this policy for reimbursement.
3.4 The Traveler is responsible for submitting a travel expense settlement form to the Department of Procurement Services, with all required attachments within two months of the last day of approved travel, in order to qualify for reimbursement of expenses, unless a longer period of time is expressly approved in advance by the Chief Procurement Officer.
SECTION 4. REGULATION APPLICABLE TO ALL EMPLOYEES, BOARD MEMBERS, AND NON-EMPLOYEES
4.1.1 Written approval to travel must be secured in advance by the employee for all travel. Under no circumstances should an employee travel without proper approval.
4.1.2 Each employee is responsible for submitting for reimbursement a travel expense settlement form, with all required attachments, to his or her department-designated individual promptly after the last day of approved travel. The last date of approved travel is identified as the last date listed on the approved travel authorization. Those who travel extensively and find it more convenient to submit monthly or academic term expense reports for all travel within that period may continue to do so provided that expenses are submitted promptly after the last date of the month or academic term. However, authorization to submit term expense reports must be granted expressly by the Chief Procurement Officer in advance.
4.1.3 Reimbursement of travel expenses paid from federal, state and private grants shall be governed by the terms and conditions of the grant if they differ from those contained in this policy; otherwise, this policy shall govern such reimbursement. The traveler will need to make special notation on the travel authorization and expense settlement form that grant travel regulations are being followed. The traveler will also need to provide to the Office of Procurement Services a copy of the grant travel regulations so that compliance can be assured.
4.2 Board Members
This policy shall govern reimbursement of travel expenses to Board members. Advance authorization from the Board Chair is required for Board member travel expenses.
4.3 Consultants or Other Contractors
Those individuals or companies hired by the College to provide services should include all travel related expenses in the fees charged rather than seeking separate travel reimbursement. Contracted individuals or companies wishing to receive separate reimbursement for travel expenses must have this requirement stated in the signed contract and this policy shall govern any such reimbursement unless otherwise designated in the signed contract.
Travel by students shall be governed by this policy.
4.5 Interviewees/Candidates for Employment
Interviewees/Candidates for employment who will be reimbursed for travel expenses shall be governed by this policy.
SECTION 5: TRANSPORTATION
5.1 Commercial Airlines
5.1.1 Allowable reimbursement for commercial airline travel shall include the actual expense or cost for the least expensive logical fare via the most direct route, or a reasonable alternative route if it results in lower fare. Travelers may not specify a particular airline to accumulate mileage or promotional plans, such as frequent flyer programs, if it results in a higher airfare. See Section 12.
5.1.2 Travelers are encouraged to make advance bookings through one of the contracted agencies; however, non-contracted agencies may be used when a less expensive airfare can be obtained.
5.1.3 If a change in the cost of airfare is incurred, the charge is reimbursable if the traveler is directed by an institutional representative to change his or her travel plan, or if extenuating circumstances arise and are approved by the Chief Procurement Officer or designee. Changes in cost of airfare incurred due to the traveler's negligence shall be considered a personal expense and shall not be reimbursed.
5.1.4 Deliberately causing increased cost or delays to obtain personal gratuities, such as denied boarding compensation, frequent flier points or mileage is prohibited. Conversion of airline tickets for personal benefit, such as downgrading tickets, returning unused tickets for cash or credit is also prohibited. Any and all credits, rebates or refunds resulting from these actions are the sole property of Shepherd College.
5.1.5 Reimbursement can be made to the traveler in advance for airfare between 45 and 180 days prior to the trip. In order to receive reimbursement, the traveler must submit an approved receipt.
5.2 Commercial Rental Vehicles
5.2.1 Commercial rental vehicles may be used when traveling on College business. Reimbursement will be made at actual cost for daily rental fee for a mid-size or smaller vehicle, plus mileage fees and fuel costs. For travel of more than a few days in duration, weekly rental rates may be reimbursed if they will result in a lower total cost than the daily rate. Reimbursement may be made for full size vehicles if more than three (3) people are traveling together, and for larger vehicles if a group of five (5) or more is traveling together.
5.2.2 Insurance: Collision damage insurance for automobile rentals is not reimbursable. A rental made using the corporate travel card automatically has collision insurance at no cost for rentals up to 60 days. The State of West Virginia insurance program automatically covers collision insurance for vehicle rentals more than seven (7) days. No other insurance or insurance-like product is reimbursable for rentals used in the United States, unless required by law. Full coverage insurance is a reimbursable expense for any approved rental vehicle used outside the United States.
5.2.3 In cases where a traveler chooses to drive rather than fly, reimbursement will be based on actual in-transit expenses (mileage, hotel, meals, etc.), not to exceed the lowest available commercial airfare plus local transportation, and parking (where applicable) to and from the airport.
5.3 Privately Owned vehicles
5.3.1 Privately owned vehicles may be used when traveling on College business. Reimbursement for use of a privately owned vehicle will be made at the current Internal Revenue Service Limits (as listed in the Internal Revenuešs Publication 463.)
5.3.2 In cases where a traveler chooses to drive rather than fly, reimbursement will be based on actual in-transit expenses (mileage, hotel, meals, etc.), not to exceed the lowest available commercial airfare plus local transportation, and parking (where applicable) to and from the airport.
5.3.3 Roadside assistance services, if needed, shall be reimbursed at actual cost.
5.4 Rail Service
5.4.1 Travelers are encouraged to make advance bookings through one of the contracted agencies; however, non-contracted agencies may be used when a less expensive fare can be obtained.
5.5 Miscellaneous Ground Transportation
5.5.1 Travelers are encouraged to use courtesy transportation when provided by a hotel, motel, or other service facility.
5.5.2 Taxi, bus and other forms of public transportation are reimbursable expenses.
5.6.1 Commercial Airlines
Original or certified copy of "passenger receipt" portion from commercial airline ticket or original or certified copy of "travel agency invoice" is required for reimbursement. Refundable or unused airline tickets shall be returned immediately to the ticket issuer for proper credit/refund.
5.6.2 Commercial Rental Vehicles
Original or certified copy of invoice/receipts is required for reimbursement. Reimbursement will be made for actual fuel cost and receipts should be attached if available. Travelers are encouraged to return rental cars with a full tank of fuel to avoid high refueling cost charged by rental agencies.
Original or certified copy of invoice/receipts is required for reimbursement.
5.6.4 Miscellaneous Ground Transportation
Receipts are not required for miscellaneous ground transportation.
5.6.5 Direct Billed Payments
Copies of direct-billed receipts MUST be attached with the final expense account. Providing this information/documentation is the responsibility of the traveler. Example: Hotel/Airfare billed to corporate travel card, Registration billed to the Purchasing Card or Purchase Order must be referenced in the direct-billed section and a copy of the receipt included with final travel settlement. Providing copies of this documentation is the responsibility of the traveler.
SECTION 6: LODGING
6.1.1 Allowable reimbursement for lodging shall include the actual expenses for overnight accommodations and all applicable taxes and surcharges.
6.1.2 Lodging shall be reimbursed at the least expensive single room rate. If accommodations are shared with other travelers their name(s) must be noted on the travel settlement.
6.2.1 Original or certified copy of itemized receipts (folio) is required for lodging reimbursement. The hotel receipt/folio is required to show a zero balance.
6.3 Direct Billing
6.3.1 Individual employees are expected to pay lodging expenses with their corporate travel card and seek reimbursement. Exceptions to this policy may be granted with written justification and request for exception to the Chief Procurement Officer or their designee.
6.3.2 Groups of employees or students where lodging and meals are a package price and other expenses are not being individually reimbursed may direct bill for lodging expenses. If other expenses are to be reimbursed it is expected that the individual will pay for lodging and seek reimbursement. Exceptions to this policy may be granted with written justification and request for exception to the Chief Procurement Officer or their designee.
SECTION 7: MEALS
7.1.1 Meal expense reimbursement is limited to actual expenses for food, service and gratuities up the $35.00 for in-state travel and $50.00 for out-of-state travel, specifically excluding alcoholic beverages and entertainment expenses. If traveling to an area where exceptionally high meal expenses occur a traveler may submit a request for an exception for a meal allowances not to exceed the Internal Revenue Service limits for in-state and out-of-state travel. Receipts should be submitted with request for exemption.
126.96.36.199 To be eligible for breakfast, the traveler must begin the trip at least two (2) hours before her or his normal workday or be in overnight status.
188.8.131.52 To be eligible for dinner, the traveler must end the trip at least two (2) hours after her or his normal workday ends or be in overnight status.
184.108.40.206 Travelers will not receive an allowance or reimbursement for meals that are included in registration fees.
220.127.116.11 Whenever an audit shows that the traveler is consistently taking the full rate or is in some other way using a regular flat rate, Shepherd College will require meal receipts.
18.104.22.168 The following schedule is used to determine the amount(s) allowable for an individual meal reimbursement:
Breakfast 20% of the maximum daily rate
Lunch 20% of the maximum daily rate
Dinner 60% of the maximum daily rate
7.1.2 Guardian Travel (where a traveler is paying expenses for others and seeking reimbursement): Travelers transporting or accompanying students or others entrusted to a spending unit for their care, education or placement, shall be reimbursed the actual cost of meals up to the maximum daily rate for each person. Time frames described in Section 7.1.1 receipts are required or in lieu of receipts for students, a student signature form may be provided if a per diem was given to the students.
7.1.3 Meal reimbursement is not allowed on one-day travel. The traveler must be in overnight status, except as expressly authorized in advance by the Office of Procurement Services.
7.1.4 Meal reimbursement is allowable when lodging is listed as "gratis" or "no charge."
7.2.1 Receipts are not required for meal reimbursement except for Guardian Travel (Section 7.1.2).
7.2.2 Guardian Travel (where a traveler is paying expenses for others and seeking reimbursement) will require meal receipts or a student signature form may be provided if a per diem was given to the students.
7.2.3 Travelers who continually request the maximum daily rate for reimbursement may be required on future travel to provide receipts for meal expenses.
7.3 Direct Billing
7.3.1 Individuals are expected to pay meal expenses and seek reimbursement.
7.3.2 Groups of employees or students, where lodging and meals are a package price and other expenses are not being individually reimbursed, may direct bill for combined lodging and meal expenses. If other expenses are to be reimbursed it is expected that the individual will pay for meals and seek reimbursement. Exceptions to this policy may be granted with written justification and request for exception to the Chief Procurement Officer or her or his designee.
SECTION 8: REGISTRATION FEES
8.1.1 Fees or charges for attendance at conferences, meetings, seminars, and/or workshops, as well as event-related materials, are reimbursable expenses.
8.1.2 Registration fees should be charged to the traveler's corporate travel card or the State of West Virginia Purchasing Card whenever possible. Registrations made with the State Purchasing Card require that a copy of the receipt be attached to the expense settlement and also be listed in the direct billed section of the settlement.
8.1.3 If a cancellation charge is incurred, the charge is reimbursable if the traveler is directed by an institutional representative to change his or her travel plan, or if extenuating circumstances arise and are approved by the Chief Procurement Officer or her or his designee.
8.2.1 Original or certified copy of itemized invoice/receipt is required for registration reimbursement.
8.3 Direct Billing
8.3.1 Registration fees can be direct billed to the College, if the sponsor does not accept the traveler's corporate travel card by 1) West Virginia State Purchasing Card or 2) College purchase order. A copy of the registration receipt or copy of invoice must be attached to the traveler's final expense settlement.
8.3.2 Registration fees requiring payment in advance (only if sponsor does not accept the 1) traveler's corporate travel card, 2) West Virginia State Purchasing Card, or 3) College purchase order with invoicing to be paid after the conference) can be made providing an exception is granted by the Chief Procurement Officer or his or her designee.
SECTION 9: OTHER EXPENSES
9.1.1 Travelers may be reimbursed for other business related expenses they incur if appropriate. Receipts are not required unless reimbursement is greater than the Internal Revenue Service limits. The Chief Procurement Officer or his or her designee shall determine whether or not expenses other than those listed below are to be reimbursed. Reimbursements may include, but are not limited to:
a) Tolls, garage and parking fees
b) Currency conversion
c) Local telephone calls which may include a surcharge
d) Long distance calls which may include toll charges and surcharges and must be made using the corporate communications card or from traveler's hotel/motel
f) Telegrams or cablegrams, which may include toll charges, surcharges, or delivery charges
g) Guides or interpreters
h) For trips involving multiple days of travel or single day travel where the traveler is unexpectedly delayed for business reasons, the traveler may be reimbursed for up to $3.00 per day for a personal telephone call home.
9.1.2 Non-reimbursable travel related expenses include interest on late payment of individually held travel cards, laundry fees, and personal flight or baggage insurance.
9.1.3 Persons traveling in foreign countries should report their expenditures in United States dollars. The total expenditure in foreign currency must be converted into United States dollars at the rate or rates at which the foreign money was obtained. The rates of conversion and commissions charges must be shown. Travelers are encouraged to use the corporate travel card to receive the best conversion rates and avoid high currency conversion fees. Conversion rates are to be obtained in writing from a travel service or currency exchange service and submitted with the expense account settlement form.
Receipts are required for an individual expense which exceeds the Internal Revenue Service limits.
9.3 Direct Billing
Direct bill for other expenses is not an option.
SECTION 10: FORM OF PAYMENT FOR BUSINESS TRAVEL
10.1 Corporate Travel Card
10.1.1 Travelers should use the corporate travel card for business related travel expense whenever possible and practical. No personal purchases are permitted on the corporate travel card.
10.1.2 Cash advances from an Automatic Teller Machine (ATM) using the corporate travel card should be obtained as needed for business related expenses.
10.1.2.1 A cash advance for either in-state or out-of-state travel is permissible when an employee travels a minimum of two (2) consecutive days with an overnight stay on official business.
10.1.2.2 A cash advance is for business purposes only.
10.1.2.3 No cash advance for personal purposes is permitted.
10.1.2.4 Cash advances using the corporate travel card are limited to a minimum of $100 and a maximum of $500, not to exceed $1000 during any rolling seven day period.
10.1.2.5 Cash advances should only be obtained for those expenses which cannot be charged to the traveler's corporate travel card with an estimate that incidental expenses should not normally exceed $30 per day.
10.1.2.6 Traveler's may be reimbursed for up to five (5) ATM cash advance transaction fees, and associated fees, per trip or rolling seven day period, whichever is shorter.
10.1.2.7 ATM receipt ticket is required for reimbursement of ATM transaction fee.
10.2 Cash Advances from the State Auditor's Office
10.2.1 Cash advances for travel expenses of band, athletic teams and organized student groups may be made in the exact amount estimated for the designated trip or time frame. Such cash advances may be issued for: 1) the total estimated amount of travel expenses, including the expenses of appropriate representatives, staff and/or employees accompanying the band, team or student group; and 2) the total amount of event related expenses as determined by the band or athletic director of the faculty/staff advisor or sponsor of the student group.
10.2.2 In order to ensure that the Office of Procurement Services has adequate time to obtain a cash advance, the request for travel must be received in the Office of Procurement Services at least fifteen (15) business days in advance of the first date of travel. Otherwise, a cash advance may not be honored by the State.
10.3. Settlement of Cash Advances
10.3.1 Cash advances must be settled by the institution within the time frame prescribed by the State Auditor's Offices; therefore, settlements must be submitted by the student group advisor/sponsor, band or athletic department or responsible representative within two (2) weeks of last date of approved travel.
10.3.2 Failure to settle a cash advance within the time frame prescribed by the State Auditor's Office can result in suspension of the institution's cash advance privileges; therefore, failure to settle cash advance within the above mentioned time-frame shall result in suspension of cash advance privileges for the student group, band or athletic department until such settlement is made.
SECTION 11: OTHER PROVISIONS
11.1 As stated by the West Virginia Ethics Commission, frequent flyer miles, hotel bonus points or other incentives resulting from official business travel may be used only for future official business travel.