Travel & Conferences

ALLOWABLE CONFERENCE EXPENSES - TABLE

 

What Is the Difference Between Travel Reimbursement and Conference Reimbursement?

Travel reimbursement is for personal automobile travel that may only include mileage, bridge tolls, and parking.

Conference reimbursement is for preapproved business-related travel, e.g. symposium, workshop, meeting, conference, that may include registration fees, lodging, transportation, meals, and incidentals.

Authorization to Travel

Conferences must be approved in advance, using the Conference Leave: Request form.  This form is used to ensure that you have proper authorization to travel on district business.  Your immediate supervisor must sign the form.  Foreign travel requires approval by the Board of Trustees.

Travel within the district does not require completion of a Conference Leave: Request form.

Advances

An advance of funds may be requested when substantial funds are required to pay registration fees, to reserve facilities, or to cover other costs associated with approved conference or meeting travel. Arrangements for such advances should be made with Business Services at least two (2) weeks prior to the conference to allow for processing time.  Use the Disbursement Request form to request a travel advance.

District Business Services will track all travel advances made to employees by recording them as a receivable, i.e. money owed to the District by the employee.  District Business Services will carefully review the outstanding receivable to ensure that the receipts are turned in substantiating expenditure of the funds (or funds are paid back to the district) in a timely manner.

If actual expenses are less than the advance, the difference must be remitted upon filing the Conference Leave: Expense Claim form.

Filing Travel and Conference Expense Forms

For travel within the district, the Travel Expense Claim form may be used.  This form may be submitted on a monthly basis for local travel.  Local travel does not require approval in advance. Incidental expenses associated with local travel may also be claimed on this form.  This includes parking and tolls.

Conference expense reports must be filed on the Conference Leave: Expense Claim form within ten (10) days after completing travel.  If an advance is received and actual expenses are less than the advance, the difference must be remitted upon filing the Conference Leave: Expense Claim form.

Reimbursement of travel expenses is based on ordinary and necessary business expenses.  CLPCCD does not reimburse on a per diem basis (only on actual expenses).

How Do I Claim Mileage Reimbursement?

If you are driving your own car for CLPCCD business, you may request mileage reimbursement.  (Travel to and from work and home is not reimbursable.)  Complete the Travel Expense Claim form, have your supervisor sign the form, and then forward the form to Accounts Payable.  Use this form as a log and include date, location of origin, location of destination, purpose of travel, number of miles traveled, and other charges, including parking and tolls.  Submit this form on a monthly basis.  Forward the form to Accounts Payable.

What Is the Mileage Reimbursement Rate?

The mileage reimbursement rates for the current calendar year and the prior calendar year can be found in the General Information section.

Reimbursement for Actual Expenses

Lodging

Travelers attending a conference should make the reservation early enough to take advantage of group rates.  Travelers are expected to use lodging that is necessary and reasonable, selecting the lowest standard room rates available.  An itemized hotel bill for lodging, which includes the employee's name on the hotel bill, must be submitted with the expense claim form.

Meals

Per diem allowances are reimbursable for in-state overnight travel that is 45 miles or more from the traveler's home or primary worksite.  Per diem allowances are applicable for all out-of-state travel that is 45 miles or more from the traveler's home or primary worksite.  Per diem rates are based on the U.S. General Services Administration Guidelines, which vary by city location.  A searchable database of per diem rates can be found at the following link and are annually updated effective October 1. 

Per Diem Rates | GSA

If claiming per diem rates, a copy of the location rates should be attached to the expense claim form.  Per diem reimbusements are based on departure and return times over the entire 24-hour day and are prorated accordingly.  If a free meal is served on the plane, included in a conference registration fee, built in to the standard, single hotel room rate or replaced by a legitimate business meal, the per diem allowance for that meal may not be claimed.  A copy of the conference agenda or program should be included with the expense claim form.  Exceptions for dietary restrictions on meals already included while in travel status can be made.  Receipts are not required for per diem allowances.  Per diem allowances are reimbursed after the trip is completed. 

Air Travel

Travelers should book lowest available airfare in coach class.  The District does not pay for business or first class airfare.  Provide a receipt for travel to and from your destination.  This will normally be an itinerary receipt for airfare, showing proof of payment from a travel agency, airline, or online booking tool.  If flying on open seating airlines, the District will reimburse for automatic check-in.

Car Rental

A receipt showing total charges paid must be submitted with the Conference Leave: Expense Claim form. When executing the rental agreement, the Collision Damage Waiver (CDW) should be accepted and the premium fee paid. Personal Accident Insurance is to be declined because the District provides this coverage to all staff members traveling on official business.

Proof of insurance is provided by CLPCCD's joint powers authority, SWACC. Click here to access the Request a Certificate of Insurance form.

Registration Fees

Proof of payment is required for registration fees. A typical invoice will include the employee's name, the cost, the dates of the event, and the location of the event. A copy of the conference agenda or program should be included with proof of payment.

Incidental Expenses

Other incidental, ordinary and necessary expenses do not require receipts. Such expenses include telephone charges, Internet charges, taxi, parking, etc. However, any expense over $25 requires an original receipt. Expenses for valet service, i.e. dry cleaning or laundry, are not allowed.

Use of Personal Auto

Mileage will be reimbursed based on the current IRS mileage rate. Print a route from an online tool, such as Google Maps™, which shows the total miles driven. Mileage other than to and from the conference destination may be included as long as it is for business purposes. For purposes of this mileage reimbursement, the origination point is your place of work. Driving in lieu of flying cannot exceed the cost of airfare plus ground transportation. CLPCCD may, at its discretion, provide a vehicle in certain instances.

For local travel, keep a log with date, location of origin (generally your place of work), location of destination, purpose of travel, number of miles traveled, and other charges, such as parking and tolls. The current IRS mileage rate will be used. Use the Travel Expense Claim form for this purpose. This form may be submitted to Accounts Payable on a monthly basis.

Approvals

The immediate supervisor of the traveler must sign any form associated with travel. Employees cannot authorize/approve travel or expenses for themselves. In the case of the Chancellor, the Board Chair or the Vice Chancellor, Business Services may approve, and in the case of Board Chair or Board members, the Chancellor or Vice Chancellor, Business Services may approve.

Other

The district does not reimburse expenses for spouses or companion travelers.

All costs associated with the conference should be included in the expense claim, even if paid from another source. For example, if conference registration is paid with a Procurement card (P-card), the conference expense must be included as an expense on the form and then the same amount is included as a deduction on the "Less P-card" line of the claim form.

Any exceptions to this procedure must be approved by the Chancellor or Vice Chancellor, Business Services.

Use the Missing Receipt Statement for any receipt that is missing. This form must be signed by the Chancellor or Vice Chancellor, Business Services.

Original, itemized receipts must be submitted. A credit card statement is proof of payment but does not qualify as an itemized receipt.

All expenses must be for business purposes. No reimbursement will be made for personal travel.

Foreign travel requires board approval.

Federal travel regulations and/or Internal Revenue Service regulations will be used to resolve any issue not specifically addressed in this procedure.

Contact Information

Please contact Vice Chancellor, Business Services, Jonah Nicholas if you have questions regarding Travel and Conferences. He can be reached at (925) 485-5253.