You and your staffers have some new info to contend with — if your company relies on federal per-diem rates to reimburse employees for their business travel.
The U.S. General Services Administration just released the FY 2016 per-diems, which you can rely on as of Oct. 1, 2015.
Not only do you have some new rates, but several localities slip into the standard Continental U.S. (or CONUS) territory.
Here’s a rundown the changes.
Standard CONUS rate for FY2016
The majority of counties in the U.S. (2,600 of them) fall under the standard continental U.S. (CONUS) rate.
For FY 2016, the standard CONUS per-diem rate is $140, broken down as:
- $89 for lodging, and
- $51 for meals and incidental expenses (M&IE). Make sure employees understand: That includes taxes and tips.
That should make employees happy (or keep them from complaining quite as much) – those rates are up 7% and 11% respectively.
And in case anyone’s unclear, here’s what the feds consider incidental expenses: fees and tips given to porters, baggage carriers, hotel staff and staff on ships.
Let both A/P and road warriors know: You have some new places that fall into this category this go-around. More than a dozen new locations were moved to the standard CONUS list for FY2016. They are:
- Huntsville, AL
- Modesto, CA
- Driggs/Idaho Falls, ID
- Springfield, IL
- Covington/Slidell, LA
- Hattiesburg, MS
- Los Alamos, NM
- Stateline/Carson City, NV
- Oakridge, TN
- Greenville, TX
- Fredericksburg, VA
- Norfolk/Portsmouth, VA
- Prince William/Manassas, VA
- Anacortes/Coupeville, WA
- Shepherdstown, WV
Of course that doesn’t cover everywhere your business travelers may venture to. There are still about 400 areas that have rates higher than the standard CONUS rate.
This year, two new locations jumped from the standard CONUS list to the Non-Standard Area (NSA) list.
Be sure to make a note of these:
- Grand Lake, CO (Grand County), and
- Pecos, TX (Reeves County).
As for the other NSA rates? Your team and your travelers can look them up on the interactive map you’ll find on the GSA site: gsa.gov/portal/category/100120
That’s worth bookmarking on every A/P computer.
And remember, there’s now a per-diem mobile app to help both employees on the road and your finance staffers in the office. You can download it here: gsa.gov/portal/content/302273
That means there are no excuses for noncompliance!