Travel and Event and Membership Policy
The Board of Trustees may modify, amend or supplement this policy, as it deems necessary and appropriate.
TRUSTEE AND STAFF TRAVEL AND EVENT ATTENDANCE
All trustees and staff are encouraged to attend District related events (conferences, meetings, workshops, etc.) subject to budget constraints. Trustee attendance is subject to Board of Trustees approval and staff attendance is subject to approval by the Executive Director.
A trustee may have the opportunity to attend regional, statewide and national events for library purposes upon approval by the Board at a regularly scheduled meeting and are subject to the provisions outlined below. Staff may have the opportunity to attend regional, statewide and national events for library purposes upon approval by the Executive Director and are subject to the provisions outlined below.
All event attendance must follow appropriate District procedures. Financial and informational accounting is expected of each trustee and staff member for each event. This includes completion of all required forms for the event and turning in all available receipts. No reimbursement will be made without appropriate documentation. No entertainment expenses as defined by the Local Government Travel Expense Control Act shall be paid. “Entertainment” includes, but is not limited to, shows, amusements, theaters, circuses, sporting events, or any other place of public or private entertainment or amusement, unless ancillary to the purpose of the program or event.
Accompanying non-staff must pay additional expenses.
COMMITTEE AND OTHER APPOINTMENTS FOR TRUSTEES AND STAFF
All trustees who are asked to serve on a committee or other similar group must be authorized to do so by the Board prior to accepting appointment.
All staff who are asked to serve on a committee or other similar group must be authorized to do so by the Executive Director prior to accepting appointment. This is applicable to service which will require staff time and/or travel expenses.
TYPE OF TRAVEL AND EVENTS FOR TRUSTEES
There will be four types of authorized travel / event expense:
- Attendance at national library conferences, such as the ALA (American Library Association) and PLA (Public Library Association) annual meetings.
- Attendance at library conferences in Illinois, such as the ILA (Illinois Library Association) annual meeting and the annual trustee forum.
- Attendance at committee or leadership sessions of the ALA, ILA, or United for Libraries for officers and members of such committees.
- Attendance at regional/local training and other events sponsored by local libraries, regional library systems, the Illinois State Library, or other educational events.
Travel or event expense for other situations may be authorized by the Board when appropriate.
While travel to events is not mandatory for any trustee or for any specific event unless required by law, all trustees are encouraged to take advantage of appropriate opportunities to further their education as trustees.
FREQUENCY OF TRAVEL FOR TRUSTEES
Trustees are limited to the following events, unless authorization is granted by a majority vote of the Board:
- Attendance at one National Conference per year (ALA, PLA, or equivalent).
- Attendance at the ILA annual meeting and the ILA Annual Trustee Forum Workshop.
- Attendance at up to 5 regional/local training events for which a fee is charged, but which require no overnight stays. Attendance at free regional/local events is unlimited.
- Attendance at ALA Midwinter, ALA Leadership, United for Libraries leadership or other national committee meetings, or ILA state leadership or state committee meetings is limited to trustees who serve as elected officers, committee chairs or committee members as listed in the official rosters. The Board of Trustees must authorize those trustees to serve in those elected or appointed positions for travel expense to be approved.
FREQUENCY OF TRAVEL FOR STAFF
Staff attendance at events is subject to approval of the Executive Director.
Financial and informational accounting through the use of the appropriate form pages listed below is expected of each trustee and staff for each event. Each page of the form does not necessarily need to be completed for every event.
The parts are:
- Travel and Attendance Form Page A: Request for Conference/Continuing Education Opportunity Page. This page must be completed for approval by the Board of Trustees for trustee travel and it must be completed for approval by the Executive Director for staff travel.
- Travel and Attendance Form Page B: Airline/Hotel Reservation Page. This page must be completed if air travel and/or hotel reservations will be required.
- Travel and Attendance Form Page C: Request for Per Diem/Cash Advance. This page must be completed if a Per Diem/Cash Advance will be requested.
- Travel and Attendance Form Page D: The Travel Expense Report. This page must be turned in within 30 days of the completion of the event.
- Travel and Attendance Form Page E: Education Report. Trustees will use this page to report on what was learned at the event. Trustees are provided up to 30 days to prepare such report after the completion of the event. Trustee reports will be included in the Board Packet. Staff reports will be made using an online form. Use of the online form by staff will be dependent on the nature of the event. Agendas, if available, may be the appropriate submission in this area.
- Travel and Attendance Form Page F: Request for Mileage Reimbursement Local Travel Only. This page must be completed for requests for reimbursement for local trips.
Trustees and staff are responsible for their travel/event planning and expense planning and accounting.
- Reservations must be made through the District Administration office for registration, airfare and hotel expense unless prior arrangements are made with the District Administration office.
- Trustees and staff may use their personal frequent flyer or hotel preference account numbers when reservations are made. These should be given to the District Administration office at the time the reservation request is made.
- Payment for authorized registration, hotel and airfare for trustees and staff will be made by library credit card.
- Every effort should be made to take advantage of early registration specials.
Reimbursement for reasonable expenses will be paid by the District upon the completion of the appropriate pages of the form with appropriate receipts. This form will be due no later than 30 calendar days after returning from a travel or education event, except that local mileage expense can be accumulated quarterly if properly documented.
The District will cover the following expenses:
- Economy airfare to and from the out of state conference location with a not to exceed round trip amount of $1,000.
- Ground transportation expense (to and from airport; car for hire, cab or shuttle fare, etc.) with a not to exceed amount of $400.
- Per Diem rate for meals at the GSA approved rate for the city. The amount will be adjusted for meals covered in special events. Meals which qualify for reimbursement are only those which are necessary for attendance at the program. Breakfast and dinner would normally only be reimbursable when an overnight stay is involved. If an overnight stay is not involved, the per diem shall be applied proportionately at the rate of GSA daily meal breakdown for lunch and dinner applicable to the location of the event. The cost of any meal paid for with the conference or program registration shall be deducted from the total per diem payable based on the GSA breakdown for that meal type (e.g. breakfast, lunch, and dinner). Alcohol will not be paid for under any circumstances.
- Up to $75 per day to cover miscellaneous expenses such as tips, internet access, onsite transportation, etc. All expenses must be documented on the appropriate page of the form.
- Luggage fees for up to two checked bags per trustee or staff at the rate charged by the airline carrier used. Receipt of payment must be provided for record purposes.
- Conference/Event registration fees (including special program and/or meal events).
- Automobile mileage to and from local, regional, or state events at the IRS Standard Mileage Reimbursement Rate. National events held in-state are also eligible.
- Parking, including hotel parking when appropriate, and toll expenses.
- Hotel Room at conference rate for up to 5 nights per national or state conference. Longer stays by Trustees must be authorized by the Board in advance when considering approval of the Request for Conference/Continuing Education Opportunity Page. The actual cost of lodging per night is not to exceed the cost of a single room at a rate of one of the conference hotels. If additional requirements are needed for a special room, the extra cost will be paid by the traveler. The District does not cover the costs of other charges, such as additional guests, telephone calls, movies, etc. However, one brief five minute phone call home is permissible. Charges beyond this five minute limit are the responsibility of the traveler. Room service charges will be paid for up to the daily per diem allowance when a cash advance for per diem was not paid. If a cash per diem was paid in advance, the trustee and/or staff member must reimburse the library for all room service charges. The total reimbursement amount should be noted on the Travel Expense Report Page with an attached check payable to Fountaindale Public Library.
- Newly elected or appointed Trustees are not eligible to attend a National Conference during the first year of their term, but are encouraged to attend ILA and local/regional training events to gain a greater understanding of their role as trustee.
- For Trustees, attendance at National Conferences shall be limited to no more than 4 trustees at any given conference, except that ALA or United for Libraries or ILA elected officers, or appointed committee chairs or committee members with program responsibilities may attend in addition to the normal limit of 4. When ALA or ILA is held in the Chicago metro area, the limit of 4 trustees will be suspended due to lower expenses.
- When more than 4 trustees wish to attend a specific conference, the Board will consider rotating attendance among trustees and may allow a preference for Board officers when conflicting requests are considered.
- All pages of the form will be re-examined on an as-needed basis in order to provide for full accountability of trustee travel expenses.
- Out of State travel by the Executive Director must be approved by the Board of Trustees.
The District shall pay in full Trustee memberships to appropriate library organizations at the following levels subject to the availability of funds.
- American Library Association (ALA) Basic Membership
- United for Libraries (Association of Library Trustees, Advocates, Friends and Foundations) Basic Membership
- One ALA Roundtable
- Illinois Library Association Basic Membership
For staff members, individual memberships in these and other library-related organizations, professional organizations, and/or community organizations may be paid at the discretion of the Executive Director. All professional membership dues are paid dependent on budgetary considerations and may not be renewed as financial constraints of the District warrant.
To promote public relations and goodwill in the community, the District encourages participation by Trustees and staff in community events. Tickets will be purchased for trustees and staff to attend selected functions. Payment for a guest to such functions is the responsibility of the attendees. The District may pay in advance for tickets for guests of trustees and staff. Payment to the District for such tickets must be made within 30 days. If substitutes are found, no reimbursement is necessary. It is the responsibility of the ticket holder to locate a substitute attendee(s). In the event of an emergency, the requirement to reimburse the District will be waived.