Main Campus Policies
The following Main Campus policy is an addendum to University policies #FA112A-05 (which addresses reimbursements of business travel expenses ) and #FA112B-05 (which covers non-taxable reimbursements to University employees), both of which can be found in the Financial Affairs Manual. Please ensure that you are familiar with these policies. Please note that in some cases the policy listed below is more strict than University policy.
Reimbursement requests for the types of expenses listed below have come up frequently and the following is intended as clarification of what the Main Campus will and will not reimburse - regardless of funding source (gifts, grants, operating budgets, etc...) Please note that for expenses paid with foreign currencies, conversion rates based on the dates of the transactions are acceptable.
Departments must abide by these policies. However, they may enforce stricter guidelines if they so choose. Such stricter guidelines should be in writing.
Please note that Unit Heads as referenced below are the individuals listed under "Main Campus Schools and Offices", "Institutes, Centers and Programs" or "Office of the Provost" on the list of Deans and Directors found here.
Individuals with signature authority should consult the managerial checklist of what to look for when approving Employee Reimbursements.
Airphone: The expenses incurred while using a telephone on-board an airplane are not reimbursable on the Main Campus at this time. This policy may be subject to change in the future; however, the current cost of this service is prohibitive.
Child Care/Pet Sitting: The Main Campus does not allow for the reimbursement of baby or pet sitting expenses.
Cellular Phones: There are three levels of reimbursement for cellular phones.
- University-owned: University-owned cellular phones are devices where the service plan is in the University's name. These will be fully paid (cost of device and monthly service charges) by the department. However, these must be purchased in accordance with guidelines set up by UIS. Unit Heads may get University-owned cellular phones without further approval. All other employees must have prior written approval from the Unit Head or his/her designee.
- Employee-owned: If the service plan is in the employee's name, then the employee is responsible for the full cost of the device. A maximum of 50% of the monthly service charge will be reimbursed provided that the devices meet the guidelines set up by UIS. Prior written approval from the Unit Head or his/her designee is required.
- Calls made from personal cellular phones for business purposes are reimbursable. In this case the employee must submit his/her original cellular phone statement with the business-related calls highlighted. Personal cellular phone minutes used for business-related calls will be reimbursed as follows:
- Billable Minutes - Reimbursement based on the amounts charged on the statement.
- Monthly Allowance Minutes - Reimbursement is based on the employee's monthly cellular phone plan rate. For example, if the employee pays $39.99 per month for an allowance of 400 minutes, then the prorated reimbursement will be about $0.10 per minute. Reimbursements will not be allowed for minutes that are provided at no cost per the employee's cellular phone plan, such as for free, unlimited off-peak, night/weekend and/or network minutes.
- Monthly Surcharges and Taxes - If requested, reimbursement will be provided on prorated rates for applicable surcharges and/or taxes as itemized on the cellular phone statement. Any flat monthly charges, such as for the subscriber's phone line, will not be reimbursed.
- Early termination/cancellation of service: University funds may not be used to pay for early termination/cancellation of service, unless the employee leaves the University or the position changes so that the employee is no longer required to carry a cell phone for work related purposes.
Clothing/Business Attire: Appropriate business and/or evening attire is the responsibility of the individual and is not a reimbursable expense.
Computers/Software: Desktops and laptops are not reimbursable expenses. All computers for institutional use must be purchased in accordance with the guidelines set up by UIS. Additionally, all software must be purchased in accordance with the guidelines set up by UIS.
Data Plans/Line Connections (Internet Service): In accordance with the University Human Resources' teleworking policy, all expenses related to the internet service for the employee's home, even if used for business purposes, are not reimbursable.
Donations: Donations are not reimbursable expenses. Donations from University funds to charitable or other organizations outside the University must be approved by the area Dean, Vice President, or fiscal officer of the department making the donation. Written approval should be obtained prior to making the donation and should accompany the request for payment. The donation must be made in the name of the University on an Expense Voucher submitted to Accounts Payable using account code 74808 "Donations and Conributions." Donations to any political campaign are not permitted.
Dry Cleaning/Laundry: These expenses will only be reimbursed if an employee has been on University business travel for a continuous period of 7 days or longer. All other dry cleaning/laundry expenses, including those for academic garb, are not reimbursable.
First-Class Travel: University policy is very clear - this is not an allowable expense. Business-class travel is reimbursable only for flights off the continent.
Fitness Center: Fitness center fees for University employees will only be reimbursed if an employee has been on University business travel for a continuous period of 7 days or longer. All other fitness center fees while on business travel are not a reimbursable expense - either for University employees or guests of the University.
Gift Certificates: The purchase of gift certificates is strongly discouraged. They are readily convertible into cash and are therefore considered taxable. They are not to be purchased using an American Express Corporate Card or the Procurement Card and they should not be given in lieu of an honorarium.
- Airline Clubs: Reimbursement for airline clubs such as the Red Carpet Club are allowable only for those who travel a minimum of 20 trips per year and who have approval from the Unit Head or his/her designee. Any frequent flyer miles accumulated should be applied to the purchase of the membership first.
- Club Memberships: Reimbursement for other clubs such as Cosmos or The Georgetown Club are allowed for Unit Heads who do extensive fundraising. Where not prohibited, membership should be in the University's name.
- Roadside Assistance: Reimbursement for roadside assistance such as AAA is only reimbursable for those who travel frequently on University business by car or van such as Admissions or Athletics. Prior approval from Unit Head or his/her designee required.
- Discount Stores: Reimbursements for discount clubs such as Sam's Club, BJ's or Costco are only allowed if the membership is in the University's name and with prior approval from the Unit Head or his/her designee.
- It should be noted that University memberships in discount clubs are generally discouraged. Office supplies should be purchased from the University's preferred vendors. There needs to be a clear cost benefit to purchasing a discount store membership.
- NOTE: Consumable products purchased from discount stores and prepared by employees for consumption at University events are not covered by the University's umbrella insurance policy.
- Other Memberships: Reimbursement is only allowable with the prior approval of the Unit Head.
Movies: In-room movies while on business travel are not a reimbursable expense - either for University employees or guests of the University.
Parking for University Employees: Regular daily parking of personal vehicles by employees at their place of employment (either on- or off-campus) is considered by the IRS as a personal expense and not reimbursable. This does not include parking while traveling on University business.
Spa Fees: Reimbursement of spa fees are not allowed.
Spouse/Other Family Expenses: Reimbursement of expenses for spouses, other family members, or friends while accompanying an employee on University travel are not allowed. Any surcharges or additional fees or expenses as a result are the responsibility of the employee.
Theater Tickets: Georgetown employees may be reimbursed for theater tickets only when they are used for fundraising purposes and with prior approval of the Unit Head.
Traffic Tickets: Traffic tickets (moving violations and/or parking) are not reimbursable expenses.
Train Tickets: Main Campus allows booking of Acela business fares, also known as Premier Coach. Acela first class fares are still prohibited.
In general, computers and other computer equiment purchased with University funds, including grant funding, are considered University property. All computer equipment must be in compliance with current standards as set by University Information Services.
For questions regarding the Main Campus Computer Replacement Program, please click here.
The proper disposal of computer equipment is essential to maintaining data security. For this reason, computers must be wiped by University Information Services and then recyled through Facilities Management.
Facilities Management will also recycle used printers and digital cameras. You may either drop the equipment off or call Work Management at 202-687-3432 to arrange a pick up.