SCORE Association (“SCORE”) has adopted this Field Travel Expense Policy (the “Policy”) to ensure that all SCORE program related travel is reasonable and in compliance with SCORE funding restrictions including its Federal award Terms & Conditions and the 2CFR §200.475 Travel costs. This policy shall be consistent with and supplementary to the expense allowability rules outlined in Page 35 of the CAPP: Travel Expenses and the Form 14 Expense Instructions. Compliance with this Policy is mandatory.
Travel Expenses Overview
SCORE reimburses its staff and volunteers for legitimate SCORE travel expenses including personal vehicle mileage, parking, taxis, per diem, airfare, hotel expenses, etc. To be reimbursed with any federal award (restricted) funds, expenses must comply with the policies below and be properly documented and submitted via the Form 14.
SCORE chapters are permitted to institute local policies limiting reimbursable expenses with the approval of the District Director. Reimbursements are at the discretion of the chapter pending the availability of funds. A chapter policy may not supersede this policy.
SCORE Program Related Travel: Any SCORE-related-business travel that requires the SCORE travelers to travel from their home base-of-operations for 12 hours or more and/or travel a distance greater than 50 miles. For this policy, a home base-of-operations may be a local SCORE office or a personal home address. Program related travel activities may include but are not necessarily limited to travel to mentor a client; travel to district, regional or national event; travel for monitoring operational performance; etc.
Least Cost Principle: All SCORE travelers are expected to use SCORE funds responsibly. Whenever possible, expenses should be made at the lowest cost possible within reason. For example, if it is reasonable, and it costs less than airfare to rent a car to drive to a district meeting, the traveler should request reimbursement for only the amount equivalent to the cost of renting the car. SCORE Travelers should keep this reimbursement principle in mind and minimize costs whenever possible for their chapter. See Page 37 of the CAPP for additional details.
General Travel Expenses Rules:
All expenses must follow the Least Cost Principle. Specific restrictions on the allowability of travel costs (i.e. flight upgrades) and required documentation are included in the Form 14 Expense Instructions. In general, SCORE will not reimburse for airfare upgrades, reimbursements for damaged or lost personal property during travel, social events, insurance on rental car nor for the surcharge to pre-fuel the vehicle from restricted funds. Please consult the Form 14 instructions for the complete list of requirements.
Receipts are required for any line item expense over $25; the receipt must be itemized and meet all additional documentation requirements listed in the Form 14 Expense Instructions. Any expenses where additional documentation is required, but only a receipt is provided will automatically be paid from chapter local unrestricted funds (if it is a reimbursable cost). SCORE will not reimburse any expense over $25 without a receipt.
All reimbursement requests must be submitted no later than 90 days of the transaction date to be honored. SCORE volunteers and staff are expected to request reimbursements for amounts over $25 within 30 days of the transaction date.
SCORE will reimburse expenses for travel accommodations that would otherwise be unallowable if the SCORE traveler has documented medical condition. For example, an individual may be required to rent a car rather than fly, or an individual may need “extra leg” space on a flight because of a diagnosed condition. In such cases, individuals must be prepared to share the documentation with SCORE HQ staff on request. Any documentation received in this way will be treated in accordance with SCORE’s privacy policies and the law.
Personal Vehicle Policy
SCORE will reimburse SCORE travelers for the use of their personal vehicle for SCORE program related travel. SCORE will only reimburse personal vehicle use based on the GSA privately owned vehicle mileage rate. The rate is inclusive of fuel and vehicle maintenance costs. SCORE will not reimburse any itemized costs (e.g., fuel receipts or vehicle repairs) associated with personal vehicle use.
Personal vehicle mileage will be reimbursed at the effective GSA privately-owned vehicle rate that was in effect on the day the approved travel expense was incurred unless the chapter has a written policy to disallow mileage expenses. SCORE requires that all mileage reimbursement requests that total over $25 include documentation of distance travelled, such as a pdf or printed map showing the distance travelled.
SCORE volunteers are eligible to be reimbursed personal vehicle mileage for local trips for SCORE business (within 12 hours and/or 50 miles of a home base-of-operations). SCORE employees are ineligible to receive personal vehicle reimbursement for commuting between home and regular place of work.
The IRS considers any mileage reimbursements over the charitable mileage reimbursement rate of $0.14 per mile as income and requires it to be reported as such on the individual's tax return. SCORE will issue an annual 1099-NEC Tax Form for each volunteer whose reimbursement in excess of the IRS charitable rate is $600 or more. SCORE volunteers have the option to deduct non-reimbursed miles driven for SCORE at the IRS charitable mileage on their tax returns instead of requesting reimbursement
SCORE will reimburse SCORE travelers for their hotel/lodging expenses up to the allowed posted General Services Administration (GSA) nightly rate plus 10% (before taxes are applied) with federal (restricted) funds. The GSA posted lodging rates are at https://www.gsa.gov/travel/plan-book/per-diem-rates/. Any lodging rates exceeding the GSA rate plus 10% will only be paid using local unrestricted funds
For example, if the traveler books a hotel at $120/night (before taxes) and the posted GSA rate for the zip code and month of travel is $100/night, then the traveler may be reimbursed up to $110/night plus taxes (rate+10%) with federal restricted funds. The difference ($10) will be paid using local unrestricted funds
Per Diem Policy
SCORE will reimburse SCORE travelers for daily meal and incidental expenses while on SCORE program related travel. SCORE will reimburse up to the posted GSA Per Diem rate for the date(s) and location of the travel (https://www.gsa.gov/travel/plan-book/per-diem-rates/). SCORE will not require receipts for per diem expenses. In accordance with the GSA rates, the per diem rate for the first and last travel days will be limited to 75% of daily rate.
In some cases, a chapter’s policy may further restrict the per diem travel expenses for its volunteers to at cost reimbursement. In those cases, the traveler must submit their receipts for reimbursement, and they will be reimbursed accordingly. Any SCORE travelers may opt for this method of per diem reimbursement. SCORE will never reimburse per diem expenses in excess of the posted GSA per diem rate.
Please note that any meeting meals or other shared meals provided during travel must be deducted from per diem rate for that day.
If travel must be suspended or cancelled for any reason, the traveler must notify their immediate field leader (Chapter Chair, District Director, Regional Vice President) or supervisor as soon as possible. SCORE will reimburse for cancelled travel expenses incurred by the SCORE traveler. However, the SCORE traveler should make an effort to recoup travel expenses (e.g. requesting a refund from a travel booking site or agency) prior to requesting reimbursement from SCORE.
*Field Leader may be aChapter Chair or designee, District Director or designee, Regional Vice President, Vice President of Finance, or Vice President of Field Operations.
**VP of Field operations approves all regional expenses, and VP of Finance approves all district and regional expenses.