Kansas Department of Administration

16-A-006 Travel Related Policy Changes (October 12, 2015)

Informational Circular No. 16-A-006
Date of this Informational Circular: October 12, 2015
Contact Name:
  1. Ginnie Schirmer
  2. Shelley Harvey
  3. Brad Elkins
  4. Brandy Wilson
  5. Chuck Wilson
  6. Janette Martin
Ph:
  1. (785) 296-7021
  2. (785) 296-2707
  3. (785) 296-3356
  4. (785) 296-6260
  5. (785) 296-6033
  6. (785) 296-2708
Email:
  1. ginnie.schirmer@da.ks.gov
  2. shelley.harvey@da.ks.gov
  3. brad.elkins@da.ks.gov
  4. brandy.wilson@da.ks.gov
  5. chuck.wilson@da.ks.gov
  6. janette.martin@da.ks.gov
 APPROVAL:  DeAnn Hill
(Original Signature on File)
Summary:
Travel Policies Effective with Implementation of Federal Standards for Per Diem Rates

 

As announced in Informational Circular 16-A-003 on September 4, 2015, the State of Kansas will adopt federal standards for per diem rates for travel and expense effective with all travel that occurs on and after January 1, 2016. The following policies are being implemented in conjunction with the adoption of these federal per diem rates and are effective for all travel occurring on and after January 1, 2016:

Subsistence Rates

  • Per Diem rates for the State of Kansas shall consist of the following:
    • Meals and Incidentals Expense (M&IE) rate -
      • Meals – the cost of meals, taxes and tips.
      • Incidentals Expense –all fees and tips to hotel porters, bellhops, doormen, and maids.
    • Lodging rate -
      • Employees may be reimbursed for actual lodging expense incurred, not to exceed this rate. 
      • No allowance for any tips is included with this rate. 
      • Taxes are paid in addition to this lodging rate, as current policy allows, except for foreign travel locations.
      • For foreign travel locations, lodging taxes are included with the lodging rate and are not an additional reimbursement.

Note: Following the federal guidelines with respect to M&IE will avoid any taxability issues.

  • Subsistence rates will consist of a standard per diem rate and non-standard area per diem rates. The standard rate is used except when the travel location is specified as a non-standard area, in which case, the per diem rate for that non-standard area is used.
  • Meal reimbursement will be based on quarter days with the daily reimbursement amount divided equally between quarters. Meal per diem will be provided for the quarters the traveler departs and returns.
  • International travel meal reimbursement will follow the U.S. Department of State M&IE rates, with no allowance for paying a higher amount for actual meal expenses.

Same Day Travel Meal Allowance

  • For employees that qualify for a same-day travel meal allowance, the agency will enter the appropriate amount to be reimbursed based on 15%, 35% or 50% (breakfast, lunch or dinner) of the daily M&IE rate.  The meal is to be determined by the agency.  A new expense type “Same Day Travel Meal” has been added to the Travel & Expense module for the meal associated with same day travel. See the Employee Travel Expense Reimbursement Handbook for the guidelines for receiving a meal with same day travel.

Reduced Meal Allowance for Meals Provided at No Cost to the Employee

  • If meals are provided during a given travel day, the agency will reduce the M&IE rate by the amount of the meal that was provided, based on 15%, 35% or 50% (breakfast, lunch or dinner) of the daily M&IE rate.  For partial days, the quarter amount is calculated first and then the meal deduction % is applied.
  • If all meals are provided for a day, the reduction to the M&IE rate will be 100% and there will be no allowance for incidentals expense reimbursed to the traveler.

Reduced Subsistence Allowance

  • Reduced subsistence allowance requires approval of the agency head or agency head’s designee, using the form DA-37 Reduced Subsistence Allowance.

Border City Travel – Discontinued

  • Border City Travel Rule and designated cities are discontinued. However, the Department of Administration will consider requests for blanket approval of specific out-of-state travel locations.  The requests will come from the agency head or designee and may be renewed annually.

Expense Reports

  • Expense Reports must be completed unless there are no reimbursable expenses to the traveler (such as mileage, meal per diem, etc.).
  • If travel related expenses include reimbursable expenses to the traveler, all prepaid expenses are required to be added to the expense report.  This includes but is not limited to lodging, transportation rental and fares, fuel charged to a state credit card or account, conference registration and lodging, etc.
  • Expense reports should include M&IE entered for one day at a time rather than for a range of days on one line.

Travel Expense Account Codes

  • The new series of travel account codes, 525510 thru 525590 will be used for all travel occurring on and after January 1, 2016.  Regent institutions will continue to use the existing travel account codes since they do not use the SMART Travel & Expense module.
  • The new account codes, 525510 thru 525590, will be used for all travel locations (in-state, out-of-state and international).  The location entered for an expense report will be used to determine the in-state, out-of-state and international designation which will be provided in SMART reports. The chart below provides the current and new account codes:

     

  SMART 9.0 SMART 9.2
Travel Related Account Code Descriptions In-State Out-of-State International All
Travel & Subsistence 52510 52520 52530 52550
Private Vehicle Miles 525110 525210 525310 525510
Hire of Cars Planes Buses 525120 525220 525320 525520
State Car Exp 525130 525230 525330 525530
Air Rail and Bus Fare 525170 525270 525370 525570
Meals and Lodging 525180 525280 525380 525580
Non-Subsistence 525190 525290 525390 525590

Travel Authorizations

  • Travel authorizations entered beginning November 13, 2015, for travel occurring on and after January 1, 2016, will use the new account codes and rates.

Moving of Employee Personal Effects Account Codes

  • New account code 521500 will be used for moving of employee personal effects for both in-state and out-of-state moves.  This account code will be used for all moves occurring on and after January 1, 2016.  Regent institutions will continue to use the existing account codes for this expense category. The chart below provides the current and new account codes:
  SMART 9.0 SMART 9.2
Moving Account Code Description In-State Out-of-State International All
Moving Employees' Personal Effects 521300 521400   521500

Updates for Subsistence Rates

  • State subsistence rates will be updated on April 1 and October 1 each year and will be effective until the next semi-annual update.  Historical rate information will be maintained in SMART

Rate File, Policy Documents, and Links

  • An electronic file with the CONUS standard rate and non-standard area rates (for the continental United States) will be available at the Office of the Chief Financial Officer, Travel Information for State Employees website at: Travel Information for State Employees.
  • The Employee Travel Expense Reimbursement Handbook is being updated to reflect these policy changes.  See the Employee Travel Expense Reimbursement Handbook for complete travel policy information available at the Office of the Chief Financial Officer, Travel Information for State Employees website at: Travel Information for State Employees
  • The Office of the Chief Financial Officer Policy Manuals are being updated to reflect these policy changes. Policy Manuals are available at the Office of the Chief Financial Officer website at: Policy Manual.
  • Agencies will be notified when the revised Employee Travel Expense Reimbursement Handbook and Policy Manuals, and the CONUS rate file are available on the Department of Administration website.

 DH:jm

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