WESTERN NEW MEXICO UNIVERSITY

Silver City, New Mexico

TRAVEL POLICY


TABLE OF CONTENTS

SECTION 1.  AUTHORITY - SCOPE OF POLICY

1

Authority 

1

Scope of Policy

1

SECTION 2.  DEFINITIONS 

1

SECTION 3.  TRAVEL REQUEST - APPROVAL PROCESS

3

Travel Request Form Required

3

Processing Time 

3

Final Approval  

4

Distribution   

4

Cancellations  

4

SECTION 4.  PER DIEM RATES - PRORATION

4

Applicability 

4

Per Diem Rate Computation

4

Reimbursement from Federal Funds

6

Rate Reduction

6

Board, Commission and Committee Members 

6

Temporary Assignment 

7

Per Diem in Conjunction with Other Leave 

7

Illness or Emergency 

8

SECTION 5.  REIMBURSEMENT OF ACTUAL EXPENSES IN LIEU OF PER DIEM RATES

8

Applicability

8

Overnight Travel 

8

SECTION 6.  MILEAGE - PRIVATE CONVEYANCE

8

Applicability

8

Rate

9

Privately Owned Automobile

9

Automobile Insurance

9

Privately Owned Airplane

9

Reimbursement Limit for Out of State Travel

10

Additional Mileage

10

SECTION 7.  USE OF PUBLIC CONVEYANCE FOR OFFICIAL BUSINESS

10

Use of WNMU Vehicles

10

Vehicle Requisition Required

10

Use of State Aircraft

11

Unspecified Conveyance

11

SECTION 8.  REIMBURSEMENT FOR OTHER EXPENSES

11

Receipts Not Required

11

Receipts Required 

12

SECTION 9.  TRAVEL VOUCHERS

12

Applicability

12

Approval Process

12

Filing Deadline

12

Information Required

13

Signatures Required

13

SECTION 10.  TRAVEL BEYOND UNITED STATES BOUNDARIES

13

SECTION 11.  EFFECTIVE DATE 

13


TRAVEL POLICY

SECTION 1.  AUTHORITY - SCOPE OF POLICY.

A.                Authority.  The Per Diem and Mileage Act, Sections 10-8-1 to 10-8-8 NMSA 1978 (Repl. Pamp. 1995  as amended by House Bill 220, governs the reimbursement of travel expenses for public officers and employees of public post-secondary educational institutions, including Western New Mexico University ("WNMU").  WNMU's Travel Policy is promulgated pursuant to the authority granted in Section 10-8-5 (A) NMSA 1978.

B.                 Scope of Policy.  WNMU's Travel Policy governs the payment of per diem rates and mileage and the reimbursement of travel expenses for all salaried and nonsalaried public officers and employees of WNMU, its branch campuses and off-campus centers.

SECTION 2. DEFINITIONS .

As used in this policy, the following definitions apply:

A.                "board or committee meeting" means the formal convening of public officers who comprise a board, advisory board, commission or committee even if no further business can take place because of the lack of a quorum.

B.                 "designee" means the [President, Vice President, department head, account manager].

C.                "employee" means any person who is in the employ of WNMU and whose salary is paid either completely or partially from public money.  This excludes work-study students and graduate assistants.

D.                "governing board" means the Board of Regents of WNMU.

E.                 "home" means

1.      for per diem purposes the area within a 30 mile radius of the place of legal residence as defined in Section 1-1-7 NMSA 1978 (Repl. Pamp. 1995).

2.      for mileage purposes, the place of legal residence as defined in Section 1-1-7 NMSA 1978 (Repl. Pamp. 1995).  See Appendix A for a copy of Section 1-1-7.

F.                 "nonsalaried public officer" means a public officer serving as a member of the governing board, an advisory board, a committee or a commission appointed by the executive, judicial or legislative branch of state government or the governing board of WNMU and not entitled to compensation, but entitled to payment of per diem and mileage.

G.                "out of state" means beyond the exterior boundaries of the State of New Mexico.

H.                "per diem" means a daily allowance for meals, overnight lodging and certain other incidental expenses.

I.                   "public officer" means every elected or appointed officer of WNMU including, but not limited to:

1.          all WNMU board, advisory board, committee and commission members elected or appointed to a board, advisory board, committee or commission specifically authorized by law or validly existing as an advisory committee pursuant to Section 9-1-9 NMSA 1978; and

2.          all members of WNMU advisory boards, committees or commissions lawfully appointed by the judicial or legislative branch of state government or by the governing board of WNMU.

J.                   "public post secondary educational institution" designated in Chapter 12, Articles 13, 14, 16 and 17 NMSA 1978.

K.                "supervisor" means the account manager or department head to whom a WNMU public officer or employee reports.

L.                 "travel" means for per diem reimbursement purposes, being on official business away from home as defined in Paragraph G above and at least 30 miles from the WNMU campus or location to which the public officer or employee is assigned.  However, nonsalaried public officers are eligible for per diem for attending meetings in accordance with Section 4(E);

M.               "travel voucher" means a payment voucher submitted for the purpose of claiming reimbursement for travel expenditures.

N.                "Western New Mexico University (WNMU)" means the main campus, branch campuses and off-campus centers of WNMU.

SECTION 3. TRAVEL REQUEST - APPROVAL PROCESS.

A.                Travel Request Form Required.  A public officer or employee of WNMU must request permission prior to travel by submitting a completed travel request form to his or her supervisor prior to each trip.  If more than one trip is anticipated within a week's time to the same destination, they may be combined on one request.  The travel request form must bear the account name and number and must be signed by the department supervisor.  The supervisor and Vice President's signature on the travel request form indicates his or her approval of the requested travel.  Departments that report to the VPAA only require approval from the department supervisor before being submitted to the Business Office, unless the account charged belongs to the VPAA.  All associated purchase requisitions for travel must be attached to the travel request for approval.  Travel expenses that will be paid with a procurement card must be indicated on the Travel Request.  Incomplete travel request forms and purchase requisitions will be returned and may not receive final approval from the Office of Business Affairs.  See Appendix B for a sample travel request form.

B.                 Processing Time.  Approved travel request forms must be submitted to the Office of Business Affairs for processing and verification of funds preferably seven working days, but not less than four, working days prior to the anticipated date of travel.

1.                  Conference or registration fees should be processed with a purchase requisition or procurement card with appropriate receipts turned in to Accounts Payable.  In cases where a purchase order or payment by procurement card is not feasible, fees may be reimbursed to the individual by requesting it on the Travel Request.  These fees will be charged against the department's registration fees budget line item.   See Appendix C for a sample purchase requisition.

2.                  Airfare may be processed with a purchase requisition or procurement card with appropriate receipts turned in to Accounts Payable.  If airfare is paid by the traveler, a ticket stub and/or invoice for the purchase of the tickets is required to accompany the voucher for reimbursement.  

3.                  Hotel expenses may be processed with a purchase requisition or procurement card.  Actual reimbursement will be limited to the maximum allowance stated in Section 5.  All appropriate receipts must be turned in to Accounts Payable.

4.                  Meals may not be processed with a purchase order or paid with a procurement card.

5.                  Late travel request forms will be returned and may not be approved by the Office of Business Affairs.  However, upon written request of a public officer or employee of WNMU and for good cause, the governing board or its designee may grant an exception to the four working day deadline. 

C.                Final Approval.  Following the verification of funds and calculation of estimated cost, the travel request form will receive final approval from the Office of Business Affairs.

D.                Distribution.  Upon final approval, a copy of the complete travel request form and purchase order will be distributed to the department that approved the requested travel.

E.                 Cancellations.  A department may cancel travel requests by submitting a copy of the purchase order with a written request to cancel to the Office of Business Affairs.

SECTION 4.  PER DIEM RATES - PRORATION.

A.                Applicability.  Per diem rates shall be paid to public officers and employees of WNMU only in accordance with the provisions of this Section.  Per diem rates shall be paid without regard to whether expenses are actually incurred.  Where lodging and/or meals are provided or paid for by WNMU, or another entity, the public officer or employee is entitled to reimbursement only for actual expenses in accordance with Section  5.

B.                 Per Diem Rate Computation.  Except as provided in Subsections C through H of this Section, per diem rates for travel by public officers and employees of WNMU shall be computed as follows:

1.                  Partial Day Per Diem Rate.  Public officers or employees of WNMU who occasionally and irregularly travel shall be reimbursed for travel which does not require overnight lodging, but extends beyond a normal workday as follows:

a.                   for less than 2 hours of travel beyond the normal work day, none;

b.                  for 2 hours, but less than 6 hours beyond the normal work day, $10.00;

c.                   for 6 hours, but less than 12 hours beyond the normal work day, $20.00;

d.                  for 12 hours or more beyond the normal work day, $30.00.

"Occasionally and irregularly" means not on a regular basis and infrequently as determined by WNMU.  For example, an employee is not entitled to per diem rates under this subsection if the employee either travels once a week or travels every fourth Thursday of the month.  However, the employee is entitled to per diem rates under this subsection if the employee either travels once a month with irregular destinations and at irregular times or travels four times in one month and then does not travel again in the next two months, as long as this is not a regular pattern.

"Normal work day" means the hours between 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, not to include holidays, for all public officers and employees of WNMU both salaried and nonsalaried regardless of the officers' or employees' regular work schedule.

2.                  Overnight Travel.  Regardless of the number of hours traveled, travel for public officers and employees of WNMU where overnight lodging is required shall be reimbursed as follows:

a. in state areas $ 85.00

b. in state special areas $ 115.00

c. out of state areas $ 115.00

d. out of state special areas $ 140.00

or actual lodging and meals expenses under Section 5.

3.                  Return from Overnight Travel.  On the last day of travel when overnight lodging is no longer required, partial day reimbursement shall be made.  To calculate the number of hours in the partial day, begin with the time the traveler initially departed.  Divide the number of hours traveled by 24.  The hours remaining constitute the partial day which shall be reimbursed as follows:

a.                   for less than 6 hours, $10.00;

b.                  for 6 hours, but less than 15 hours, $20.00;

c.                   for 15 hours or more, $30.00.

4.                  Special Area Designations.  For all officers and employees of WNMU, the in state special area shall be Santa Fe.  The out of state special areas shall be the areas of New York City, Washington D.C., Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Palm Springs, San Diego, Atlanta, Boston, Las Vegas, Atlantic City, Philadelphia and Dallas/Fort Worth designated as metropolitan by the most recent edition of the Rand McNally road atlas, and areas outside of the continental United States including Alaska and Hawaii.

5.                  The rate of per diem set forth in this section shall be reduced by the following amounts if food or lodging is provided to the traveler:

a.                   for meals provided, $10.00 per meal; and

b.                  for lodging provided the per diem shall be reduced to $30.00 for in state travel and $45.00 for out of state travel0 to cover only meals for that 24 hour period.

C.                Reimbursement from Federal Funds.  WNMU's governing board or its designee may authorize per diem for a public officer or employee who is reimbursed solely from federal funds in accordance with the rate allowed by the federal government for travel to that locality.

D.                Rate Reduction.  WNMU's governing board or its designee may initiate or approve a reduction in the rates of per diem and mileage set forth in this policy.

E.                 Board, Commission and Committee Members.  Nonsalaried public officers may receive per diem as follows:

1.                  Official Board, Commission and Committee Meetings.  Nonsalaried public officers of WNMU may elect to receive either:

a.                   $95.00 per meeting day for attending each board or committee meeting; or

b.                  per diem rates in accordance with Subsection B of this Section.

2.                  Other Official Meetings.  Nonsalaried public officers may receive per diem rates for travel on official business that does not constitute a board, advisory board, committee or commission meeting only in accordance with Subsection B of this Section.

3.                  Dual Capacities.  Nonsalaried public officers who also serve as public officers or employees of WNMU, state agencies or local public bodies may receive mileage or per diem rates from only one public entity for any travel or meeting attended.  Furthermore, nonsalaried public officers who are also public officers or employees may not receive per diem rates for attending meetings held in the place of their home or at their designated posts of duty unless they are on leave from their positions as public officers or employees.

F.         Temporary Assignment.  Public officers and employees of WNMU may be reassigned temporarily to another duty station.

1.                  Routine Reassignment.  Public officers and employees subject to periodic reassignment of duty stations as a normal requirement of their employment will not be eligible for per diem rates after the time of arrival at the new duty station.

2.                  Nonroutine Reassignment.  Public officers or employees not normally subject to periodic reassignment who are temporarily assigned to another WNMU location away from home will receive per diem for the first 30 calendar days of their assignment only, unless approval of the governing board or its designee is given to extend per diem payments upon a showing that the assignment is necessary and temporary.  Except in such extraordinary circumstances, after 30 calendar days, the place where the employee or officer is  assigned will be regarded as the designated post of duty.]

G.                 Per Diem in Conjunction with Other Leave.  While traveling, if a public officer or employee of WNMU takes sick, annual or authorized leave without pay for more than four hours of the normal work day, per diem shall not be allowed for that day unless authorized in writing by the governing board or its designee.

H.                Illness or Emergency.  The governing board or its designee may grant permission, in writing, to pay per diem rates and travel reimbursement to an employee or public officer who becomes ill or is notified of a family emergency while traveling on official business and must either remain away from home or discontinue the official business to return home.

SECTION 5.  REIMBURSEMENT OF ACTUAL EXPENSES.N LIEU OF PER DIEM RATES.

A.                Applicability.  Upon submission of appropriate receipts with an approved Travel Voucher, a public officer or employee of WNMU will be reimbursed actual expenses in lieu of the per diem rate.

B.                 Overnight Travel.  For overnight travel by a WNMU officer or employee where overnight  lodging is required, the public officer or employee will be reimbursed as follows:

1.                  Actual Reimbursement for Lodging.  A public officer or an employee of WNMU may elect to be reimbursed actual expenses for lodging not exceeding the single occupancy room charge (including tax) in lieu of the per diem rate set forth in this Section.  In cases where two or more employees traveling together share a room, each employee will be reimbursed for the proportionate actual cost.  Whenever possible, public officers and employees of WNMU should stay in hotels that offer government rates.  

2.                  Actual Reimbursement for Meals.  Actual expenses for meals are limited by Section 10-8-4(L)(2) NMSA 1978 (Repl. Pamp. 2003) to a maximum of $30.00 per day for in-state travel and $45.00 per day for out-of-state travel.

SECTION 6. MILEAGE - PRIVATE CONVEYANCE.

A.                Applicability.  Mileage accrued in the use of a private conveyance shall be paid only in accordance with the provisions of this Section.  Only one public officer or employee of WMNU shall receive mileage for each mile traveled in single privately owned vehicle or airplane when two or more public officers and/or employees travel in the same privately owned vehicle or airplane.

B.                 Rate.  Public officers and employees of WNMU shall be reimbursed for mileage accrued in the use of a private automobile or aircraft in the discharge of official duties as follows:

1.                  privately owned automobile, 32 cents per mile, unless a lesser amount is requested either by receipt or lesser rate;

2.                  privately owned airplane, 40 cents per nautical mile or the current New Mexico state rate, whichever is greater.

C.                Privately Owned Automobile.  For conveyance in the discharge of official duties by privately owned automobile outside of the campus of WNMU, mileage accrued shall be reimbursed for miles driven at the rate set forth in this Section as follows:

1.                  pursuant to the mileage chart of the most recent edition of the Rand McNally road atlas for distances within and outside of New Mexico; or

2.                  pursuant to actual mileage if the beginning and ending odometer readings are certified as true and correct by the traveler; and

a.                   the destination is not included on the Rand McNally atlas, or

b.                  at the destination(s) of the public officer or employee of WNMU, the public officer or employee of WNMU was required to use the private conveyance in performance of official duties.

D.                Automobile Insurance.  Public officers and employees of WNMU who use a privately owned automobile for conveyance in the discharge of official duties must sign a certification of personal insurance prior to travel. 

E.                 Privately Owned Airplane.  Mileage accrued in the use of a privately owned airplane shall be reimbursed at the rate set forth in this Section as follows:

1.                  pursuant of the New Mexico Aeronautical Chart published by the State Highway and Transportation Department, Aviation Division, for distances in New Mexico and other states' air maps for distances outside or New Mexico; or

2.                  pursuant to actual air mileage if certification is provided by the pilot, or a beginning and ending reading of actual mileage if the reading is certified as true and correct by the traveler, and the destination is not included on an air map.

F.                 Reimbursement Limit for Out of State Travel.  Total mileage reimbursement for out of state travel by privately owned automobile or privately owned airplane shall not exceed the total coach class commercial airfare plus ground transportation fees that would have been reimbursed those traveling had they traveled by common carrier.

G.                Additional Mileage.  Mileage shall be reimbursed for travel on official business only.  The governing board or its designee may authorize in writing reimbursement for mileage from a point of origin farther from the designated post of duty in appropriate circumstances.  The written authorization must accompany the travel voucher.  If official business is transacted while commuting from home to post of duty to home, mileage shall not be paid for the number of miles between post of duty and home.  Odometer readings showing additional miles accrued for official business must be provided to WNMU prior to payment.

SECTION 7.  USE OF PUBLIC CONVEYANCE FOR OFFICIAL BUSINESS.

A.                Use of WNMU Vehicles.  The governing board or its designee may authorize a public officer or employee of WNMU to use a WNMU vehicle for official WNMU business if the officer or employee has a current, valid license to operate a motor vehicle in this state and meets the criteria set forth in WNMU's Motor Vehicle Use Policy.  Departments will be charged 32 cents a mile for use of a WNMU car, 36 cents a mile for use of a WNMU mini-van, full size van or sports utility vehicle, and 75 cents a mile for use of a bus.

B.                 Vehicle Requisition Required.  For use of a WNMU vehicle as a means of conveyance outside of a 30 mile radius from the campus of WNMU, a completed Vehicle Request form (Exhibit C) and student authorization form (Exhibit E) if applicable must accompany the travel request.  Within the 30 mile radius from the campus of WNMU, the traveler only needs to check out the vehicle from the Motor Pool or, in cases where a department vehicle is used, the traveler only needs to log the trip on the department’s mileage log.

1.                  The vehicle request form must refer to the travel request number.  See Appendix D for a sample vehicle request form.

2.                  Under circumstances where a public officer or employee cannot operate a university vehicle, a student who meets the criteria set forth in WNMU's Motor Vehicle Use Policy may drive the vehicle as long the public officer or employee accompanies the student in the vehicle at all times.  A student authorization form (Exhibit E) must be completed in this instance and must be approved by the supervisor of the public officer or employee who will accompany the student as well as the governing board or its designee.  See Appendix E for a sample student authorization form.

C.                Use of State Aircraft.  A member of the governing board may travel by state-owned aircraft to board or committee meetings.  Passengers on such aircraft will be limited to members of the Board of Regents, WNMU employees, or those persons performing direct contractual services on behalf of WNMU.  Family members of the governing board are not allowed to travel on state-owned aircraft.  Use of state-owned aircraft will not be allowed where the meeting is held less than 150 miles from the members home or place of business or employment.

D.                Unspecified Conveyance.  When a public officer or employee of WNMU does not specify a means of conveyance, the Office Of Business Affairs will assume that the public officer or employee will use his or her personal vehicle.

SECTION 8.  REIMBURSEMENT FOR EXPENSES.

            Public officers and employees of WNMU may be reimbursed for certain actual expenses in addition to lodging, meals or mileage rates.

A.                Receipts Not Required.  Public officers and employees of WNMU may be reimbursed without receipts for the following expenses:

1.      gratuities as allowed by the governing board or its designee;

2.      parking fees; and

3.      taxi or other transportation fares at the destination of the traveler

in an amount of $6.00 per day not to exceed a total of $30.00 per trip.  If more than $6.00 per day or $30.00 per trip is claimed, the entire amount of the reimbursement claim must be accompanied by receipts.

B.                 Receipts Required.  Public officers and employees may be reimbursed for the following expenses provided that receipts for all such expenses are attached to the reimbursement voucher:

1.                  actual costs for travel by common carrier, provided such travel is accomplished in the most economical manner possible;

2.                  rental cars or charter aircraft, provided less expensive public transportation is not available or appropriate;

3.                  professional fees or dues that are beneficial to WNMU's operations or mission;

4.                  game admission fees and programs (athletic recruiters only);

5.                  business telephone calls and/or faxes; and

6.                  photocopying charges.

Under circumstances where the loss of receipts would deny reimbursement and create a hardship, an affidavit from the officer or employee attesting to the expenses may be substituted for actual receipts.  The affidavit must accompany the travel voucher and include the signature of the chairperson of the governing board or his or her designee.

SECTION 9.  TRAVEL VOUCHERS.

A.                Applicability.  Every claim for reimbursement, mileage and other reimbursable travel expenses associated with in state or out of state travel shall be made on a travel voucher.  Only one voucher will be allowed for each travel request submitted.  All required receipts must be affixed to an 8 ˝” x 11” sheet of paper and stapled to the back of the voucher.  See Appendix F for a copy of a travel voucher.

B.                 Approval Process.  Public officers or employees of WNMU must submit travel vouchers to their department supervisor for approval then forward to their corresponding Vice President for further approval.  Departments that report to the VPAA only require approval from the department supervisor before being submitted to the Business Office, unless the account charged belongs to the VPAA.  Approved travel vouchers must be submitted to the Office of Business Affairs for final approval and processing.

C.                Filing Deadline.  Travel vouchers, supporting schedules and documents shall be filed within 15 working days after the trip is complete. Outstanding travel purchase orders may be cancelled after filing deadline has lapsed.  Completed and approved travel vouchers must be submitted to the Office of Business Affairs no later than Friday at 4:30 p.m. in order to receive reimbursement the following Friday at 1:00 p.m.

D.                Information Required.  Every travel voucher shall contain the travel destination(s), the purpose served by the travel, the dates and hours of departure and return, attached receipts, if required, account number and any other pertinent information regarding the trip.

E.                 Signatures Required.  No per diem, mileage or other expenses shall be reimbursed to any public officer or employee unless:

1.      The public officer or employee requesting reimbursement for lodging, meals, per diem, mileage or other expenses signs the voucher certifying that it is true and correct;

2.      The department supervisor and Vice President of the public officer or employee of WNMU signs the voucher approving it for payment.  Departments that report to the VPAA only require approval from the department supervisor before being submitted to the Business Office, unless the account charged belongs to the VPAA.

SECTION 10.  TRAVEL BEYOND THE UNITED STATES BOUNDARIES BY UNIVERSITY VEHICLE.

For complete instructions and proper procedures, please contact the Business Office at least one week in advance of anticipated trip.

SECTION 11.  EFFECTIVE DATE.

A.                The Travel Policy shall become effective July 1, 2004.

Approved by:  Policy Committee

               December 13, 2004