PUBLIC SERVICES OMBUDSMAN FOR WALES TRAVEL AND SUBSISTENCE POLICY

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1 PUBLIC SERVICES OMBUDSMAN FOR WALES TRAVEL AND SUBSISTENCE POLICY This document sets out the arrangements for reimbursement of expenses incurred by office staff that travel on official business. Official travel does not include travel between one s home and place of work, except when asked to work late at night or in the weekends. Staff have a duty to organise their travel arrangements with due regard to economy, consistent with ensuring effectiveness for the benefit of the office. The general principle that applies to the claiming and payment of expenses is that where no expense is incurred, no reimbursement is due. Claiming monies to which you are not entitled may, depending on the circumstances, constitute grounds for disciplinary and/or criminal action. Where there is any doubt over entitlement, staff should refer the matter via the Corporate Services Manager, for a ruling. The purpose of subsistence payments is to reimburse staff for necessary additional expenditure incurred while away from the office. This could be accommodation and/or food, bridge tolls, parking fees, etc. In all cases reimbursement will need to be approved by the appropriate line manager who will assess it in accordance with the policy set out below. Employees may arrange their own travel plans or Corporate Services may assist them. For all reimbursements, staff are to complete a Travel and Subsistence Claim Form available on the Corporate Services Help Desk and attach the receipt(s). The line manager is to sign the form and give it to a Corporate Services Officer for payment. Subsistence Allowance- Day An employee may claim day subsistence allowance if absent from their normal place of duty for more than four hours and necessarily incurs expenditure on meals. Breakfast an absence of more than 4 hours before 11:00 am 6.00 Lunch an absence of more than 4 hours including 12 noon to 2:00 pm 7.00 Afternoon Tea an absence of more than 4 hours including 3:00 pm- 6:00 pm 3.00 Dinner an absence of more than 4 hours ending after 7:00 pm No reimbursements will be made for alcoholic beverages.

2 Overnight Accommodation An employee may claim overnight subsistence allowance if absent from their normal place of duty and necessarily incurs expenditure on accommodation and meals. Claims will be paid on the basis of actual and reasonable expenditure supported by receipts. When booking a hotel Corporate Services should be requested to make the booking, using where possible the negotiated government rate. If a valid receipt cannot be produced, the maximum amount that will be paid is the Subsistence Allowance rate as set out below: Limit per night In London Outside London If you stay privately with family, friends, etc, you may claim a 20 flat rate. These limits are intended to cover the cost of accommodation and meals during a 24 hour period. When you are staying overnight, you may also claim a personal incidental allowance of 5 per day to cover miscellaneous items such as a newspaper or telephone calls. No reimbursements will be made for alcoholic beverages. Expenditure above these limits will be reimbursed only in exceptional circumstances and must be referred to the Corporate Services Manager. Overseas Allowance Valid and reasonable travelling expenses and subsistence whilst abroad may be claimed at actual cost, supported by receipts, subject to currency conversion at date of reimbursement. Hire Vehicles PSOW do not own or lease any vehicles. Staff may use their own vehicles and seek reimbursement on the basis of car allowance mileage rates as set out in Appendix 1. Alternatively, cars may be hired through contract arrangements with vehicle hire companies. Before a staff member commences driving a hire car for the first time, they must provide Corporate Services with a photocopy of their full (paper) British licence. Subsequently if one of those staff members has any change to the validity of their driving licence, e.g. points, they must notify the Corporate Services Manager when next requesting a hire vehicle.

3 A car hire form is available on the Corporate Services Help Desk and this needs to be completed by the person requesting the car. The form is then authorised by the person s line manager and given to Corporate Services to process the request, preferably five working days before the vehicle is required to allow time for the reservation to be made. Enterprise will arrange to drop off and collect the car at the requested location. Once the booking is made, the staff member will be given a print out of the hire order. PSOW will be invoiced directly for the hire costs. Staff should ensure vehicles are returned in a satisfactory condition, reporting any loss or damage to the hire firm and Corporate Services. Any accidents or incidents which happen in any hire vehicle while on company business are to be reported immediately to the Corporate Services Manager. Reimbursement for fuel is provided for business trips if using a hire vehicle. An advance is not given, staff will need to buy the fuel and then seek reimbursement, with a receipt. Private Vehicles If you use your private vehicle (car, van, motorcycle or bicycle) for official travel, the expenses actually and necessarily incurred will be met by payment of a motor mileage allowance at the appropriate rate per mile (Appendix 1). Motor mileage allowances will not be paid for home to office travel or viceversa. Passengers PSOW will pay an additional sum for any employee carrying official passengers in their vehicle. 5p per mile can be claimed irrespective of the number of persons carried. Insurance Staff must ensure they have business cover on their own insurance if using their own vehicle. If using a hire vehicle the insurance is covered by the hire company and paid by PSOW. Public transport The office will reimburse the cost of rail, air, bus and coach fares incurred in travelling on official business, including the cost of seat reservations when they are necessary. The cost of any necessary supplements incurred will also be reimbursed, e.g. upgrading a Saver/Supersaver to a standard cheap day return. The public transport rate should be used when an official journey could have been undertaken as effectively by public transport but the officer has chosen to use their own vehicle instead. Exceptions would be if heavy or bulky

4 equipment needed to be transported, cost effectiveness as other official passengers also carried, or significant saving of official time, disability factor. Staff could still opt to use their own car for journeys in excess of 150 miles, but will have to claim the entire mileage at public transport rate. Standard class rail travel should be used where it is practicable to do so or no alternative exists. However you may claim First Class rail travel if you will be working on the train on official business or if you necessarily travel with someone who is travelling first class. If air travel is the most cost effective mode of transport this should be used. Economy class is to be used wherever possible. Specific approval in advance for overseas travel must be obtained from the Ombudsman and/or Director. Taxi fares Taxis can be used (and the fares reimbursed) for official travel where it is appropriate to do so, e.g. they should only be used when alternatives are not available or the following are applicable:- There is a significant saving in official time; When having to transport heavy luggage and/or equipment; Where members are travelling together and it is a cheaper option. A receipt must be presented which shows details of the journey and this should be attached to the claim form. Other Costs Parking fees and bridge tolls will be reimbursed with supporting receipts. Financial penalties for motoring offences, including parking tickets, will not be borne by the office.

5 Appendix A Mileage Allowances Reimbursement Mileage will be paid on the shorter of Office to destination Home to Destination Mileage rates Reimbursement will be dependent on contractual terms. Current rates a. Normal contract Inland Revenue rate applies for normal mileage. Current rates are 40 p for the first miles and 25p in excess of per tax year. If a private vehicle is used for a round trip in excess of 150 miles the rate will be the Inland Revenue rate less 15 pence per mile. Current rate is 25p b. Claw contracts The rate applicable depends on the cc of the vehicle. Current rates are Essential user cc cc cc Lump sum per annum ,023 per mile first 8, p 33.8p 42.4p per mile after 8, p 12.0p 14.3p Casual user per mile first 8, p 43.1p 54.4p per mile after 8, p 12.0p 14.3p

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