Travelers are expected to use prudent judgment in the selection of lodging while traveling on official university business. Travel must be overnight and more than 50 miles away from the traveler’s headquarters to claim lodging. Reimbursement is limited to single occupancy rates, unless rental accommodations are shared by more than one authorized traveler. Due to changes detailed in Section 120 of HB 5003 implementing the 2016-2017 General Appropriations Act, and renewed in 2017 via SB 2502 — Implementing the 2017-2018 General Appropriations Act, lodging for State Sponsored events may not exceed $150 per night, see the frequently asked questions below for details. Travelers or their representatives should maintain documentation sufficient to support the business purpose of any and all travel for official university business, and generally be prepared to justify single room rates that exceed $150 per night regardless of funding source.
An itemized hotel bill showing the actual amount paid, or $0 balance due, and method of payment must accompany the Traveler’s expense report. The Traveler should ensure that the bill excludes taxes for lodging in the State of Florida. A hotel may require a copy of the University's Sales Tax Exemption Certificate. Personal expenses, such as guest accommodations, room service, entertainment, and other non-business charges, are the responsibility of the traveler.
The University’s Travel Card is the preferred method of payment.
If you have any questions or concerns, please email Travel@fsu.edu
This rule was enacted by the Florida Legislature by way of the 2016 Florida House Appropriations Bill (HB 5003), not by Florida State University, and renewed in 2017.
HB 5003, Section 120 states: In order to implement appropriations in the 2016-2017 General Appropriations Act for state employee travel and notwithstanding s.112.061, Florida Statutes, costs for lodging associated with a meeting, conference, or convention organized or sponsored in whole or in part by a state agency or the judicial branch may not exceed $150 per day. An employee may expend his or her own funds for lodging expenses in excess of $150 per day. This section expires July 1, 2017.
The intent is to prevent misuse of State of Florida funds by agencies hosting events at expensive lodging facilities, thereby abusing the “conference hotel” justification.
This rule is in effect from July 1, 2016 and has been renewed for the 2017-2018 fiscal year.
All Educational and General (E&G) and Carry Forward (CF) funds 1xx, 2xx.
Contracts and Grants (C&G) funds 520, 521, 523, 524, 530, 531, 540, 546, 552.
Florida State University School (Florida High) fund 510.
No. The $150 limit applies to the room rate only.
Seek lodging facilities with a lower room rate.
Pay the difference (including any tax) from funds not affected by this rule (Auxiliary, Foundation, etc.).
Travelers can pay the difference (including any tax) from their personal funds. Note: If the traveler opts to pay the difference, travel card must not be used.
All lodging rates are based on single occupancy.
Yes, if both are on University business and the per-person rate is less than $150 a night, ($300 total) exclusive of taxess.
A Lodging 150 Tax Calculation Worksheet is available. Enter amounts and Excel will calculate the amount due from another source/ fund.
Ask the conference provider.
Look for phrases such as "Sponsored by", "Hosted by", or "Presented by" on the registration form, website or agenda followed by the name or logo of a State of Florida agency, university, or the Florida Judicial Branch.
Document Expense Report (ER) in the “notes” section that event “was” or “was not” sponsored in part or in whole by a State of Florida agency, State of Florida University (including FSU) or the Judicial Branch of Florida.
If ER is not documented, it will be placed on “HOLD” by pre-pay travel auditor until department confirms how event was organized/hosted.
No. Small-group meeting with colleagues are not the type of meetings this rule was intended to address.
Not as a general rule. The event must be a “meeting, conference, or convention organized or sponsored in whole or in part by a state agency”. in order for the rule to apply to State/University employee(s) attending.
A faculty or staff member assisting with a session that is part of a national meeting organized by a third party would not subject that traveler to the $150 rule.
Trips completed prior to July 1, 2016 are not affected.
Travel booked, but not completed prior to FY 16-17 are affected. Look for other funds to pay the difference.
Note: All trips booked after July 1, 2016 shall follow the updated lodging rules when the event is organized in whole or in part by a state of Florida agency, State of Florida University (including FSU), or the State of Florida judicial branch.
No action is needed at present.
(Please refer to the University Travel Policies, and Travel Card Resources for more details)