TRAVEL PROCEDURES

General 

In-State Travel

Out-of-State Travel 

State Travel Center 

Airline Travel 

KCI Parking 

State Vehicles 

Accident Reporting Requirements 

15-Passenger Van Policy 

Rental Car and Other Travel Services 

Conference Registration 

Hotel/Motel Reservations  

Meals/Per Diem 

Travel Reimbursement

University Policy Manual

 

3H. TRAVEL

The University may reimburse employees, within prescribed limitations, for all necessary and actual travel expenses incurred during travel on official state business. Travel may be to fulfill official duties or other professional or educational activities benefiting the University. If questions arise regarding travel, contact Accounts Payable at x 5209.

The attendance by state employees at funerals is not authorized as official state business and a state vehicle may not be used to attend a funeral. Employees will not receive reimbursement for use of a private vehicle.

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3H.01 IN-STATE TRAVEL

In-state travel can be approved verbally by the employee's supervisor or the head of the budgetary unit. Reimbursement will be in accordance with the policies and rates established by the Kansas Department of Administration Division of Accounts and Reports in the booklet on travel polices titled Employee Travel Expense Reimbursement Handbook (http://www2.da.ks.gov/ar/employee/travel/travbkSMART13.htm). Meals will not be reimbursed without an overnight stay. No reimbursement will be made if lodging and/or meal expenses are incurred within 30 miles of home or Emporia State University.

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3H.02 OUT-OF-STATE TRAVEL                                       

Employees desiring reimbursement for official out-of-state travel should submit an Out-of-State Travel Expense Request/Authorization form via the Infopath form "Digital Travel Request". Prior to the beginning of the trip, a signed copy approving the travel will be returned to the department funding the trip. Travel will be reimbursed according to guidelines established by the State and Emporia State University as to the amount limited by the department. Airline, hotel reservations, and car rental may be made through the State Travel Center by calling 1-800-255-3507.

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3H.0201 STATE TRAVEL CENTER

Using the State Travel Center is optional. The State of Kansas has contracted with Shorts Travel Management to operate the State Travel Center: 

State Travel Center -- 785-272-7511 or toll-free 1-800-255-3507

(After hours emergency numbers and access codes are listed at the bottom of the itinerary.)

If the State Travel Center is used, ticket transaction fees will be assessed.

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3H.03 AIRLINE TRAVEL

To make domestic airline reservations, the traveler may contact the State Travel Center or may book reservations through any other source using a personal credit card or by calling the ESU Controller’s Office and using the University’s Business Travel Account (BTA) card.  Using the BTA will reduce University liability if tickets are cancelled due to bankruptcy or if the airline ceases operation.  Visa provides $500,000 travel accident insurance coverage when used for the purchase of air or rail tickets.

For airfare charged to personal credit cards, travelers will not be reimbursed prior to the completion of the related travel. In addition, the travel expense request must be submitted and approved prior to travel for the traveler to be reimbursed.   When charging airfare to a personal credit card, the expense will be charged to the same fiscal year as all other expenses related to the trip. The only way a department may have an airline ticket paid out of the fiscal year prior to the trip is by using the University’s BTA card.

Travelers should allow a two-hour time window on either side of their requested departure and return time whenever possible in order to allow flexibility in searching for the lowest available fare.  Acceptance of a layover or Saturday night stay will usually save a substantial amount of money.  The decision will be made by the traveler and department head, as governed by the Division of Accounts and Reports, as the savings must be compared with other cost considerations such as meal and lodging expenses.

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3H.0301 MCI & ICT PARKING

When flying from MCI & ICT, travelers must use economy parking. If a more expensive parking lot is used, the traveler can claim only the cost of economy parking, currently set at $7/day for MCI and $6/day at ICT.

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3H.04 STATE VEHICLES

The University maintains a fleet of vehicles for use by University personnel as needed. The University maintains liability insurance only. No medical insurance is carried on the driver or passengers. Departments are billed for the usage of these vehicles on a per mile basis plus any turnpike tolls charged on the K-Tag assigned to each vehicle.

Employees are expected to use the state motor pool vehicles for official state business. The motor pool consists of the following vehicles and rates, effective July 1, 2011:

16 Automobiles (5 & 6 passenger cars) – 57.5 cents per mile

4 Minivan (6 & 7 passenger) – 61 cents per mile

2 Vans (12 passenger capacity) – 70 cents per mile

In an effort to avoid reservations being made and not utilized, there is a “no cancellation fee”.  If a reservation is not canceled prior to four hours after the beginning time of the reservation a "no cancellation fee" will be added to the monthly bill in most circumstances.  The fees are $10 for autos and $20 for both minivans and 12-passenger vans.  Once the four hour window has passed and the vehicle reservation has not been canceled or picked up by the driver, the reservation will automatically be deleted.  At that point the vehicle will be available for another reservation.

State policy allows an employee to use a state-owned vehicle for commuting between the employee’s residence and the employee’s official work station only on the evening of the work day immediately preceding the date of travel or on the evening of the work day in which travel is completed.  Driving the vehicle home may not increase the total one-way trip mileage between the official work station and the destination by more than 10 miles. 

An employee’s commuting use of a state-owned vehicle is a taxable fringe benefit.  The taxable fringe benefit income is $1.50 per one-way trip and must be reported on a W-2.  To report the commuting use of a state-owned vehicle, complete the Statement of Personal Usage form and send to the Controller’s Office.  It is University policy to discourage the keeping of a University vehicle overnight at an individual’s place of residence.  Vehicles may be picked up and returned to the motor pool 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Only the driver in whose name the vehicle is reserved will be allowed to pick up a vehicle. All state vehicles are picked up at the east door of the Power Plant. The Power Plant personnel will require the driver to sign a reservation form. Vehicles should be returned to the Power Plant and parked in the spaces reserved for state vehicles on the east side of the Power Plant. Return the keys, credit card, any turnpike or gasoline receipts, and the ending mileage to a Power Plant employee. Each car is issued a credit card that is to be used only for expenses related to the state car to which it is assigned.  Under no circumstances is it to be used to purchase gasoline or other products for a private vehicle.  The date and time the vehicle was returned and the ending mileage should be recorded by the Power Plant employee. If the driver uses any personal funds to pay for gasoline, oil, or other expenses related to the state vehicle, contact the Physical Plant to obtain a Vehicle Reimbursement Claim form. The form should be completed and submitted with the receipts.

Every individual driving a state vehicle must be a state employee and must have a valid driver’s license. Only the driver(s) listed on the reservation may operate the vehicle. No one is allowed in a state vehicle unless on official state business.

K.S.A. 8-301 states that all state-owned and leased vehicles are for official business only and may not be used for private use or private business or pleasure. If the vehicle is leased in the state’s name, all rules apply as with a state-owned vehicle. If the vehicle is leased in the employee’s name, the employee will be reimbursed at the private car mileage rate.

Employees should always be aware that they are accountable for the state vehicle they are assigned, how it is driven, where it is driven, and where it is parked. The driver will be personally responsible for any and all traffic or parking citations, tickets or fines received while operating the state vehicle.

Employees are responsible for operating state-owned vehicles and potentially hazardous equipment in a safe and prudent manner, and therefore, employees should refrain from using any cellular phones or electronic devices while operating such vehicles and equipment.

State law requires drivers and passengers in passenger vehicles to wear seat belts.

Employees may park their personal vehicles in the University parking lots east of the Stormont Maintenance Center. A temporary parking permit is available from Power Plant personnel and will allow for free parking while the individual is driving a state vehicle.

Reservations for a state vehicle must be made by a department and a departmental account number must be used for the reservation. An organization may only use a state vehicle for academic purposes and it must be reserved with a departmental account number.

When reserving a vehicle allow sufficient time for pickup and return.  However, to provide for maximum usage of vehicles, do not reserve a vehicle for too long creating slack time.  Vehicles should not be picked up prior to the reserved time.

Instructions for making a Vehicle Reservation

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3H.0401 ACCIDENT REPORTING REQUIREMENTS

If an accident occurs involving a privately owned or state-owned or leased motor vehicle being used for official state business, the following action should be taken:

1. The vehicle operator or some other reliable person should immediately report the accident tothe highway patrol or other law enforcement agency.

2. Immediately notify the employee's supervisor of the accident. If the employee is unable to do so, then the first employee having knowledge of the accident should make the notification.

3. The supervisor will notify the vice president of the affected area and ESU Police and Safety.

4. Statements should not be made to anyone except law enforcement officers, Power Plant personnel, or University administration.

5. Identifying information of other parties involved in the accident should be obtained.

6. The employee involved in the accident is responsible for protecting state property from theft or further damage. If the employee is not able to do so, then the employee's immediate supervisor or first employee having knowledge of the accident should do so.

7. Damaged vehicles shall be towed to state property to avoid storage charges.

8. Notify the Director of Administration and Facility Maintenance in University Facilities (x 5331) for liability insurance purposes if damage to other property was involved.

9. All copies of information should be forwarded to the Controller’s Office. The Controller’s Office will report to the State Department of Administration as appropriate.

A copy of the accident reporting requirements will be kept in each vehicle with the vehicle registration and proof of insurance.

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3H.0402 12-PASSENGER VAN POLICY (Approved by President 6/22/01; revised 7/19/02)

It is recognized that a 12-passenger van (hereinafter "Van" or "Vans") will often be the most effective means of transportation for certain activities and events involving University employees and/or students. This policy statement is intended to implement uniform standards of usage in an effort to maximize the safety of those utilizing the Van.

1. All van usage must be in compliance with applicable municipal, state and federal requirements.

2. Van drivers must be full-time or part-time employees of the University or have an appointment as a graduate assistant. Undergraduate students may not be van drivers.  An exception is granted for on-campus use and trips less than 5 miles from the University main campus.  An exception is also granted for undergraduate drivers provided: a staff/faculty member who isalso an approved trained driver is present in the van; and the undergraduate driver is at least 21 years of age.

3. Prior to driving a van, drivers must complete a National Safety Council class on van driving and safety.

4. No driver shall operate a van more than 10 hours in any 24 hour period. The van driver  must take a mandatory 30 minute rest break every 4 hours.

5. The van driver will be personally responsible for any and all traffic or parking citations, tickets or fines received while operating a van.

6. All occupants of the van must use a seat belt at all times of operation.

7. No van will be used to transport or carry more than 12 passengers (including the driver) at any one time.

8. No luggage may be stored on top of a van.

9. This policy is applicable to the usage of all vans, whether owned, rented or leased by the University.

This policy shall be included in the ESU Policies and Procedures Manual and shared with appropriate constituencies of the University.

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3H.05 RENTAL CAR AND OTHER TRAVEL SERVICES

A rental car obtained out of state may be reserved through the State Travel Center for a fee or by the individual. Upgrades are not allowed.  Inquire with the Controller’s Office for further information.

If a rental is made out of state in the name of the University by the employee (not by State Travel), the renter needs to purchase collision and comprehensive insurance but not liability.  Everyone in a vehicle rented in the University’s name must be on official state business. 

If a rental is made out of state in the employee's name, the employee will be reimbursed for the cost of the most economical rental available and applicable taxes and surcharges. Ant insurance options and charges are the employee's resposibility and will not be reimbursed. 

If a rental spans over personal time and business use time, reimbursement of the rental will be prorated for the official business use time. 

If the employee rents a vehicle in state, the state rental contract must be used and rental must be charged through the BTA card.  This results in all insurance being covered.

Aircraft and bus charter reservations are not required to be made through the State Travel Center. The traveler must contact the Controller’s Office well in advance of travel to make arrangements because restrictions apply.

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3H.06 CONFERENCE REGISTRATION

Conference registration fees are included in the total cost for travel. The conference fee may be paid in advance.  Regardless of payment method, allow two weeks prior to deadline for processing.

If a department wishes to prepay a conference or seminar registration fee with a credit card, the Registration Purchase Order should be completed, approved and submitted to the Controller’s Office. If it is to be paid as a money with order, submit to Accounts Payable on a manual registration purchase order.  

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3H.07 HOTEL/MOTEL RESERVATIONS

Out-of-state hotel/motel reservations may be booked through the State Travel Center for a fee or by the individual. State reimbursement rates apply.

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3H.08 MEALS/PER DIEM

Meals will be reimbursed at a per diem rate only with an overnight stay. Receipts are not necessary.  Per diem is divided into four quarters: 12:01 a.m. - 6:00 a.m.; 6:01 a.m. - 12 noon; 12:01 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.; 6:01 p.m. - 12 midnight. One may be reimbursed for the quarter during which one leaves but not for the returning quarter. When a meal is included in the event attended or the hotel where the traveler stayed, reimbursement will be decreased by the meal allotment as dictated by the current policy regardless of whether or not the meal is consumed.

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3H.10 TRAVEL REIMBURSEMENT

After the traveler returns, a Manual Travel Voucher form must be completed, signed by the traveler, and have the proper department approval signature. Attach all original receipts and forward to Accounts Payable within 30 days.

Travel using a personal car must be by the usually traveled, most direct route and will be reimbursed at the University current automobile mileage rate.  If a rental car is used, the traveler must attach a memo stating the reason. The rental car receipt must be itemized.

Meal and lodging allowances will be reimbursed as stated Employee Travel Expense Reimbursement Handbook (http://www2.da.ks.gov/ar/employee/travel/travbkSMART13.htm). List any meals included in the registration fees. Make sure room rate and taxes are listed separately on receipts. Please submit receipts for taxi, shuttle, turnpike tolls, airport parking, and tips anthough they are no longer required.

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Created: November 2000
Updated: December 15, 2014
For additional or more current information,
contact Controller's Office, 105 Plumb Hall, 341-5413.