Mileage Rate and Meal Reimbursement Announcement
The purpose of this announcement is to inform the judicial branch of two changes to travel-related policies.
Effective January 1, 2014, the mileage reimbursement rate will decrease from $.565/mile to $.56/mile. The new rate of $.56/mile matches the announced rate from the Internal Revenue Service for 2014.
The Supreme Court recently approved an amendment to the Nebraska Supreme Court - Other Related Policies (Travel Policies section, Meals subsection), effective December 11, 2013. The amendment (below) removed language specifically listing the limit per meal for reimbursement within Nebraska.
Reimbursements for meals will not exceed the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) limit on meals. Meal allowances include tips. Guidelines for meal allowances can be found on the following Web site: www.gsa.gov. Employees or officers will not be reimbursed for any meal that was provided as part of an event or function should they choose to eat elsewhere absent good cause shown.
The change in the policy means that, from the effective date of the amendment, meal reimbursement will be capped based on the GSA rate for each day rather than for each meal. As you know, statute requires meal reimbursement be based on actual expenses. Documentation of actual expenses is provided through itemized receipts. The State of Nebraska does not reimburse based on a per diem. The Supreme Court has chosen to limit, or cap, the amount of actual expenses that can be reimbursed. That limit is the GSA meal rates for the location in which the meal is purchased.
1. As policy states, no meal expenses will be reimbursed if the meal has been provided except for good cause. That means, for example, if a lunch is provided, the GSA limit for the day will be reduced by the GSA lunch rate for that location.
2. Partial day travel. If, for example, you are eligible for lunch and dinner only, based on when your travel status started, meal reimbursement for that day will be capped at the GSA total for those two meals.