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Travel Reimbursements

General Information

For bargaining units with an existing Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), if the MOU contains travel language that is in conflict with this language, the MOU language shall be controlling.

Exempt, excluded, and represented state employees may be eligible for the reimbursement of authorized out-of-pocket expenses that are reasonably, actually, and necessarily incurred as a result of conducting state business. In accordance with current state policy, employees may be eligible to receive reimbursement for expenses such as:

  • Method of travel (transportation)
  • Meals and incidentals
  • Short-term lodging
  • Out-of-state travel
  • Out-of-country travel
  • Personal vehicle mileage 
  • Other actual and necessary business and/or travel costs incurred while conducting official state business

HR Manual sections 2201 – Travel and Relocation Policy, 2202 – Mileage Reimbursement, and 2203 – Allowances and Travel Reimbursements provide additional information about travel reimbursements, including links to authorities and resources

Meal and Incidental Rates

For bargaining units with an existing MOU, if the MOU contains travel language that is in conflict with this language, the MOU language shall be controlling.

The following reimbursement rates for meals and incidentals are maximums, not allowances.  In the event of an audit, employees must be able to produce receipts substantiating the amount claimed.

HR Manual section 2203 – Allowances and Travel Reimbursements provides additional information, including travel timeframes (fractional day of travel, trip of less than 24 hours, trip of more than 24 hours, etc.).

Meal and Incidental Rates
Expense Reimbursement for Actual Expense
Breakfast Up to $7.00
Lunch Up to $11.00
Dinner Up to $23.00
Incidentals Up to $5.00

Personal Vehicle Mileage Reimbursement Rates

For bargaining units with an existing MOU, if the MOU contains travel language that is in conflict with this language, the MOU language shall be controlling.

HR Manual section 2202 – Mileage Reimbursement provides additional information, including the following policies: personal vehicle mileage reimbursement, private aircraft mileage reimbursement, and receipts.

Employees must have advance approval to drive a personal vehicle on state business. 

  • Effective dates for represented employees may be found in the applicable  MOU

  • Claims for travel prior to a new rate's effective date shall receive the prior rate.

  • For historical mileage reimbursement rates, please review the State Controller's Office's Payroll Procedures Manual, Section N.

2019 Personal Vehicle Mileage Reimbursement Rates

2019 Personal Vehicle Mileage Reimbursement Rates
Type Reimbursement Rate per Mile
Personal Vehicle (approved business/travel expense) $0.58
Personal Vehicle (state-approved relocation) $0.20
Private Aircraft (per statute mile)* $1.26

*Unless otherwise stated in the applicable MOU, the personal aircraft mileage reimbursement rate is $1.26 per statute mile.

Mileage reimbursement covers:

  • Gasoline
  • The cost of maintenance (oil, lube, routine maintenance)
  • Insurance (liability, damage, comprehensive and collision coverage)
  • Licensing and registration
  • Depreciation and all other costs associated with operation of the vehicle

Short-Term Lodging Reimbursement Rates

For bargaining units with an existing MOU, if the MOU contains travel language that is in conflict with this language, the MOU language shall be controlling.

HR Manual sections 2201 – Travel and Relocation Policy and 2203 – Allowances and Travel Reimbursements provide additional travel policy information, including lodging reimbursement policy and the excess lodging request approval process.

  • Employees who incur approved overnight lodging expenses may be reimbursed.
  • Employees must stay at a commercial lodging establishment catering to short-term travelers, such as a hotel, motel, bed and breakfast, public campground, etc.
  • Employees must provide a receipt to claim reimbursement; no reimbursement will be paid without a receipt.  
  • Should the base room rate exceed the rates noted below, an  Excess Lodging Rate Approval Request (STD 255C) must be submitted and approved by your department and/or CalHR before the trip takes place.

Maximum Lodging Reimbursement Rates per Night

Maximum Lodging Reimbursement Rates per Night
CBID All counties except those listed Sacramento, Napa, Riverside Marin Los Angeles, Orange, Ventura & Edwards AFB, excluding the City of Santa Monica San Diego, Monterey Alameda, San Mateo, Santa Clara City of Santa Monica San Francisco
SEIU 
(BUs 1, 3, 4, 11, 14, 15, 17, 20, and 21)
$90 $95 $110 $120 $125 $140 $150 $250
CASE (BU 2) $90 $95 $110 $120 $125 $140 $150 $250
CAHP (BU 5) $90 $95 ​​ $110 $120 $125 ​​ $140 ​​ $150 $250
CCPOA (BU 6) ​​ $90 $95 ​​​ $110 ​​ $120 ​​ $125 $140 $150 ​​ $250
CSLEA (BU 7) ​​ $90 $95 ​​​ $110 ​​ $120 ​​ $125 $140 $150 ​​ $250
CalFIRE Local 2881 (BU 8) ​​ $90 $95 ​​​ $110 ​​ $120 ​​ $125 $140 $150 ​​ $250
PECG (BU 9) ​​ $90 $95 ​​​ $110 ​​ $120 ​​ $125 $140 $150 ​​ $250
CAPS (BU 10) ​​ $90 $95 ​​​ $110 ​​ $120 ​​ $125 $140 $150 ​​ $250
IUOE (BU 12 ​​ $90 $95 ​​​ $110 ​​ $120 ​​ $125 $140 $150 ​​ $250
IUOE (BU 13 ​​ $90 $95 ​​​ $110 ​​ $120 ​​ $125 $140 $150 ​​ $250
UAPD (BU 16) ​​ $90 $95 ​​ $110 ​​ $120 ​​ $125 $140 $150 ​​ $250
CAPT (BU 18) ​​ $90 $95 ​​​ $110 ​​ $120 ​​ $125 $140 $150 ​​ $250
AFSCME (BU 19) ​​ $90 $95 ​​​ $110 ​​ $120 ​​ $125 $140 $150 ​​ $250
Excluded ​​ $90 $95 ​​​ $110 ​​ $120 ​​ $125 $140 $150 ​​ $250

 

  Updated: 4/16/2019
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