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2201 - Travel and Relocation Policy (Historical View)

** Effective: 7/9/2018 10:24:26 AM - 7/10/2018 1:58:24 PM **

Status: Active

Change Notes

Authority updated: Updated identifiers.

Category

Travel/Relocation

Audience List

Synopsis

This policy:

Introduction

State employees may be eligible for the reimbursement of authorized out-of-pocket expenses that are reasonably, actually, and necessarily incurred as a result of conducting state business, or, in the event of an authorized employee move or relocation to another headquarters location, the reimbursement of certain out-of-pocket moving costs.

Statement

Accountable Plan

Reimbursements for actual business expenses are made in accordance with Internal Revenue Service (IRS) requirements.  The rules for an "Accountable Plan” limit reimbursement to business-related expenses substantiated by receipts or other verification.  Any excess reimbursements made to the employee must be returned to the employer in a timely manner.

Method of Travel

Short-Term Lodging

Short-Term Lodging Reimbursement Rates

Maximum Lodging Reimbursement Rates for All Represented Employees and All Excluded Employees

The Short-Term Lodging Reimbursement Rates page lists the current state rates for all excluded and represented employees.

Excess Lodging Rate Requests

If the base (nightly) room rate exceeds the current state rate, then an Excess Lodging Rate Approval Request (STD 255C) must be submitted by the employee and approved by the employee’s department and, if required, by the California Department of Human Resources (CalHR), before the trip takes place.

The state determines the necessity for and the mode of travel for employees traveling on official state business. In order to secure lodging that is in the best interest of the state, employees should submit their Excess Lodging Rate Requests for the least expensive moderately priced lodging which is within a reasonable distance of their state business.

As noted on the STD 255C, Excess Lodging Rate Requests must include three “good faith” quotes (such as Concur printouts) and justification for the lodging rate requested. If an employee submits an Excess Lodging Rate Request for a hotel other than the least expensive moderately priced hotel, he/she will need to include justification for why a more expensive hotel is in the best interest of the state.

Please note that departments should have documentation on file for employees whose justifications for their Excess Lodging Rate Requests cite reasonable accommodations. For additional information regarding reasonable accommodations, please contact your department’s Reasonable Accommodation Coordinator and/or review CalHR’s Disability Services page and/or HR Manual section 1001 - Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) Officer Role.

Delegation of Authority to Departments to Approve Certain Excess Lodging Rate Requests

State employees who are required to travel for official state business must submit Excess Lodging Rate Requests for advance approval of lodging rates that exceed the state’s maximum lodging reimbursement rates. On December 19, 2013, PML 2013-044 delegated authority to departments to make determinations regarding Excess Lodging Rate Requests up to $150 per night. All Excess Lodging Rate Requests for amounts above the delegated amount of $150 per night required advance approval from CalHR.

Effective March 7, 2018, CalHR delegates authority to departments to make determinations regarding Excess Lodging Rate Requests up to $250 per night.

Excess Lodging Rate Requests are required if the requested lodging rate is more than the state rate. As noted above, CalHR’s Short-Term Lodging Reimbursement Rates page lists the current state rates for all excluded and all represented employees.  All Excess Lodging Rate Requests for amounts above the delegated amount of $250 per night will continue to require CalHR approval in advance. Departments should continue to follow their current processes for completing and submitting Excess Lodging Rate Requests to CalHR.

Annual Submission of Excess Lodging Rate Reports from Departments to CalHR

Departments shall continue to submit annual reports to CalHR documenting the Excess Lodging Rate Requests approved pursuant to this delegation.

Out-of-State Travel

Any limitations on lodging are placed by the appointing authority when approving travel.  Lodging and meals may otherwise be claimed as follows:

Out-of-Country Travel

Any limitations on lodging are placed by the appointing authority when approving travel. Lodging and meals may otherwise be claimed as follows (applies to all state employees): 

Application

Eligibility Criteria

All employees (Represented and Excluded) may be eligible for reimbursement of authorized out-of-pocket business expenses and/or authorized out-of-pocket relocation expenses.

Always verify reimbursement information/rates and effective dates by reviewing the appropriate employee Memorandum of Understanding and/or the applicable CalHR Travel/Relocation Rules.

Please note that travel and relocation provisions and rates may vary amongst Represented employees and Excluded employees.  This variation is due to Memoranda of Understanding, CalHR Rules, and/or policy.

Authorities

Resources

Forms

PML

Related Policies

Web Pages

Contact Person

Theresa Reid
Benefits Program Analyst , Travel/Relocation
Phone: 916-324-0526
Fax: 916-324-3213
Email: travel.manager@calhr.ca.gov

Authorized By

Machelle Martin
Chief, Benefits Division