Travel and Allowances Policy

Policy Number
Board of Trustees
Date Approved
Effective Date
Responsible Division
Finance and Administrative Services
N.C. Gen. Stat. §138-6

Pursuant to N.C. Gen. Stat. § 138-6, College employees may be granted permission to travel for college-related purposes and be reimbursed for incurred cost of transportation, food, and lodging expense, subject to State of North Carolina regulations and limitations and the following guidelines:

  • The College operates under the travel guidelines published in Section II of the Accounting Procedures Manual of the North Carolina Community College System for all travel regardless of the source of funding.
  • State regulations require that all travel be reimbursed within 30 days of completion of the travel or June 30, whichever comes first. Failure to submit a timely request may result in non-reimbursement.
  • Standard reimbursements for expenses shall be based on the rates as then set by N.C. Gen. Stat. §138-6.
  • All travel must be approved in advance by completing a Travel Authorization Form and obtaining the required signatures.
  • Travel for students participating in student organization activities must be paid from non-state funds.  Students may only be paid from state funds if traveling on official college business.
  • Travel forms are found on the College’s SharePoint intranet. Current mileage rates and subsistence rates are contained within the Request for Travel Reimbursement form.
  • Mileage reimbursement will only be issued to employees for the use of their personal vehicle for travel if there was no college vehicle available for their use or the use of a personal vehicle was for the convenience of the college, not the employee. 

Exceptions to this policy would include such situations as employee driving limitations without specially equipped personal vehicles, travel which involves an extended period of time, etc.

Blanket Authorization for all others, excluding college President

A blanket authorization form may be completed and approval secured annually. The blanket travel authorization form must be approved prior to departure for all routine local travel. 

Travel Authorization 

A travel authorization form must be completed and approved for all travel not covered under a Blanket Authorization. The travel must involve a travel destination located at least 35 miles from the employee’s regularly assigned duty station or home, whichever is closest to the destination, to request reimbursement for lodging. The travel authorization form must secure approval by the College President or one of his designees (currently the Vice President of the employee’s division or Director of the Foundation for Foundation employees) for all trips prior to departure, regardless if traveling in a college owned or privately-owned vehicle. 

Travel Advances for Occasional Travel

At the discretion of the College President or his/her designee, an advance of funds which does not exceed the estimated travel expenses indicated on the approved travel authorization form may be issued (posted to the general ledger) to an employee no more than five working days prior to the date of departure. All advances must be deducted from the employee's next travel reimbursement (not to exceed 30 days after the travel period has ended, as reflected on the approved travel authorization) or no later than June 30, whichever comes first.   Reconciliation of all advances with actual expenses must be completed by June 30, by submitting a separate Request for Travel Reimbursement Form listing advances and actual expenses for each trip and attaching all required receipts. 

Definition of Terms: 

Blanket Authorization for all others, excluding college President – A travel approval form necessary to conduct College business on a local routine basis (i.e. clinicals, travel to local sites, etc.)

Travel Authorization - A travel approval form necessary to conduct college business that is not on a routine basis and/or outside of the local area.

Employee Responsibility - An employee traveling on official college business is expected to exercise the same care in incurring expenses that a prudent person would exercise if traveling on personal business and expending personal funds. Excess costs, circuitous routes, delays, or luxury accommodations and services unnecessary, unjustified, or for the convenience or personal preference of the employee in the performance of official college business are prohibited.


The College encourages professional development for all full-time employees. Travel incurred on direct behalf of the College is supported based on the travel policies of the State of North Carolina. 

Travel is classified into three categories: 

  • Local – in and around county 
  • In-State 
  • Out-of-State 

Local travel involves all travel within Carteret County. Mileage of this type is kept on a daily local travel log for purposes of reimbursement. Reimbursement for local travel is normally not made unless the individual is responsible for activities which are off campus on a regular basis and a college vehicle was not available for their use. 

In-state travel is that travel incurred within the confines of the State of North Carolina. Before one is authorized to travel and incur overnight lodging expenses within the State, a Travel Authorization Form must be completed. Travel expenses are submitted on a Request for Travel Reimbursement form.

Out-of-state travel is that travel incurred outside the borders of North Carolina. Prior approval by the President or his designee is required before the actual out-of-state travel is incurred. The special out-of-state approval is recorded on a Travel Authorization Form. Out-of-state travel expenses are reported on the same form as in-state travel. 

Travel Advance Requests

Requests for the college to pay vendors directly, for travel expenses associated with lodging, registration, airfare, rental car, etc. in advance of an employee’s trip, should be submitted at least 30 days prior to the date of departure to ensure that the Business Office is able to fulfill the request in a timely manner. 

Approval for Travel 

Prior proper approval of travel is required whether or not an employee intends to be reimbursed for expenses. Actual processing for advance or reimbursement purposes will not occur without a travel approval. The appropriate supervisor must sign the travel reimbursement form submitted to the Business Office.

Travel excess for lodging will not be approved unless:

  • Lodging is incurred at the actual meeting site and the site is selected by other than college officials; and
  • Alternative lodging is not available within the immediate area which is the current State rates for lodging

When excess lodging is requested, documentation must be provided to satisfy the requirements listed above. When registration is requested, registration materials must be attached to the travel request.

Travel and Subsistence 

The State mandated rules and regulations regarding travel, subsistence, and registration, change yearly. The regulations will be updated each year. 

College Vehicles 

College employees are expected to use college vehicles for automobile travel whenever one is available. Mileage will not be reimbursed for employees who choose to use personal vehicles when a college vehicle is available. The exceptions to this rule are (1) the employee has a specially adapted vehicle and is physically unable to use a college vehicle, and (2) when use of a personal vehicle is in the best interest of the college (e.g. the duration of the trip is such that taking a college vehicle out of circulation for that period of time would be a hardship on other departments), in which case the employee must have prior approval from the Vice President of Finance and Administrative Services. Employees using college vehicles must adhere to the following: 

  • When college vehicles are used, they should be returned to the parking spaces that are located on the south end of the Rhue Maintenance building by Shipping and Receiving. 
  • The laminated instruction sheet located in all of the college's vehicles SHOULD NOT be removed. If it is necessary to move the sheet to fill out the Travel log, it should be replaced on top of that sheet, and not placed inside the clipboard. These instructions are for everyone's reference, and it needs to be visible. Please check this before you exit the vehicle. 
  • Employees are asked to turn off the radio when turning in the vehicle after use. Please check this before exiting the vehicle. 
  • Gas receipts must be turned in to the Plant Operations Coordinator upon returning the vehicle.

Travel Requests 

It is the responsibility of each employee to correctly complete his/her own request for travel reimbursement. Such requests should be forwarded to the Executive Assistant to the Vice President of Finance and Administrative Services by the 10th of the month following the month in which the travel took place. (Example: Forward by September 10 reimbursement requests for travel which took place between August 1 and August 31, inclusive). Late travel requests will be processed the following month. It should be noted that filing for travel reimbursement for travel that took place in excess of two months prior to the filing day may result in non-payment.

Requests for travel reimbursement will only be processed when the following requirements have been met:

  • The computerized Request for Travel Reimbursement forms have been properly completed.
  • Such forms have been signed by the traveling employee and appropriate approval secured.
  • Computations have been checked and found accurate.
  • Required receipts have been stapled to each "Request for Travel Reimbursement" form.
  • Travel Authorization form has been attached.
  • Departure and arrival times have been noted on the request for Travel Reimbursement form.