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Reimbursement Policy

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University-Issued Credit Cards and Employee Reimbursement Policies

Effective Date
July 1, 2009

Purpose
To adequately document the business purpose for expenses charged on university-issued credit cards and for other employee reimbursed expenses, and to comply with IRS regulations regarding the adequate accounting for employee reimbursed expenses.

Applicable To
All full and part-time employees of the university.

Policy
All expenses charged by employees on university-issued credit cards and all expenses for which employees wish to receive reimbursement must be documented on an Employee Expense Reimbursement form.

Records Required to Support Expenses

Travel, Meals and Lodging

  • Cost of each separate expense for travel, lodging and meals. Incidental expenses may be totaled in reasonable categories such as taxis, fees and tips, etc. Receipts are required to support all expenses, except for reasonable cash tips. (See additional exception below). The receipt provided should include an itemization of what was purchased. It is not sufficient to only provide the credit card receipt.
  • Dates you left and returned for each trip and the number of days spent on business
  • Destination or area of your travel (name of city, town, or other designation)
  • Business purpose for the expense or the business benefit gained or expected to be gained
  • Employees will only receive per diem meal rates for travel on university business. Actual meal expenses for employee travel will no longer be accepted. The amount of the per diem rate will vary based on the size of the city where the employee resides while traveling. For cities with populations fewer than 3.5 million the rates will be $8 for breakfast, $10 for lunch, $20 for dinner and $2 for incidentals. For cities with populations greater than 3.5 million the rates will be $12 for breakfast, $15 for lunch, $28 for dinner and $5 for incidentals. Employees will not have to submit receipts for the cost of meals (see exception in next bullet). The per diem meal rates will be adjusted on a periodic basis.
  • It is understood employees attending an event/conference will on occasion be asked to attend a dinner that exceeds the per diem rates listed above. In these instances, the employee will be allowed to charge their actual expense. In this instance this expense will require the approval of the employee's dean/department head and the Vice President for Finance. This will only be allowed once per trip and on rare occasions. 
  • Employees attending conferences will only be allowed to claim meals not included as a part of the conference. As an example, if a conference provides breakfast and lunch, an employee will be allowed to claim dinner and incidentals only. All employees attending a conference will be required to submit a copy of the registration form that shows what is included at the conference if they wish to receive reimbursement for their meals.

Meals will only be reimbursed for those taking place during the actual trip. As an example, an employee leaves the Quad Cities at 4 p.m. for a business trip. The employee would be reimbursed for dinner but not breakfast and lunch for the day they leave on the trip. In addition, if an employee's return flight arrives in the Quad Cities at 4 p.m., they would be reimbursed for breakfast and lunch on the day of arrival, but not dinner.

Entertainment 

  • Cost of each separate expense. Incidental expenses such as fees and tips, etc., may be totaled on a daily basis. Receipts are required for all entertainment expenses claimed, except reasonable cash tips. The receipt provided should include an itemization of what was purchased. It is not sufficient to only provide the credit card receipt.
  • Date of entertainment
  • Name or location of place of entertainment. Type of entertainment if not otherwise apparent.
  • Business purpose for the expense or the business benefit gained or expected to be gained. The identities of the persons who took part in both the business discussion and the entertainment activity. This would include the occupations or other information about the recipients that shows their business relationship to the university.

Gifts (including flowers)

  • Cost of the gift along with a receipt for the cost of the gift. The receipt provided should include an itemization of what was purchased. It is not sufficient to only provide the credit card receipt.
  • Date of the gift
  • Description of the gift
  • Business purpose for the expense or the business benefit gained or expected to be gained. The identities of the persons who received the gift should also be provided. This would include the occupations or other information about the recipients that shows their business relationship to the university. It is not allowable to provide gifts to graduating students or Christmas or other holiday gifts.

Transportation

  • Receipts (for expenses related to university owned vehicles) and miles driven for employees who travel on university business. Mileage will be reimbursed at the IRS maximum rate per mile driven. This rate will be adjusted as necessary. Receipt provided should include an itemization of what was purchased. It is not sufficient to only provide the credit card receipt
  • Reimbursement for miles driven will be measured from the university to the final destination. It does not start at the employee's home
  • Date of the expense
  • Your business destination
  • Business purpose for the expense

Rental cars

Rental cars will only be reimbursed for trips that require an employee to travel extensively after they reach their destination. Rental cars will not be reimbursed for local travel unless the employee can show that the cost of the rental car plus the cost of gas is less than the cost of being reimbursed for the miles driven. If an employee wishes to use a rental car that does not meet these requirements, they will only be reimbursed for the value of the miles driven.