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On October 15, 2003, the Board adopted a new Trustee Travel Policy (attached) that incorporates guidelines for all travel expenditures. The new policy ensures that the amount spent on travel and related expenses is reasonable, while also recognizing the on-going need for Board members to continue their hard work to be well educated in financial, benefit and health care matters-a duty that is both mandated by the OP&F Board Governance Policy, as well as expected by the membership.
The following are incorporated into this new policy:
The new policy also incorporates guidelines regarding allowable reimbursable expenses. Any travel incident that falls outside of these guidelines must be brought to the Board's Administration Committee to be considered for reimbursement.
In addition, the new policy requires that OP&F's Internal Auditor conduct a semi-annual audit of Board and staff travel. OP&F staff has a similar travel policy that has been in place for several years.
The Board of Trustees recognize that they are being afforded educational
opportunities through attendance at various seminars or conferences, in order to
improve their effectiveness as named fiduciaries of the OP&F. The goal of these
forums is to improve the operation and administration of the plan solely for the
best interests of its members and beneficiaries. To that end, the trustees will
make all efforts to utilize these opportunities to the fullest while minimizing
Ohio Revised Code chapter 742.08 states, "the members of the Board of Trustees
of the Ohio Police and Fire Pension Fund shall serve without compensation but
shall be reimbursed for their necessary expenses incurred in the performance of
their official duties."
Travel expenses are further discussed under Ohio Administrative Rule 742-16-01.
This rule states, "Board Members may receive reimbursement from the fund for
all proper reasonable and necessary expenses actually incurred in the
performance of their official duties. Eligible reimbursable expenses include
but are not limited to reasonable charges for meals, beverages, tips, lodging,
airfare, ground transportation, telephone calls and registration fees." In
order to obtain reimbursement of expenses staff recommends that the following
process be followed.
The following changes are incorporated into the travel policy unless pre-approved by the Board of Trustees:
"Proper, reasonable and necessary expenses" means that the particular service or
accommodation was in fact used by, or provided to, the trustee, and was
appropriate under the circumstances and within the bounds of prudent judgment
for their attendance in official duties at Board and committee meetings,
financial/ investment due diligence trips, approved educational meetings, and
any other additional duties pre-approved by the Board of Trustees
Board of Trustee out of state travel expenses are limited to those incurred not
more than one day before, during the event, and one day after unless a longer
stay before or after the event results in lower airfare and the additional hotel
and meal expenses do not exceed the savings differential. OP&F purchasing
section will document the savings calculation.
Any travel incident or event that falls outside these guidelines must be brought
to the Administration Committee to be considered for reimbursement.
Telephone calls or other electronic transmissions for OP&F business and
incidental personal use will be reimbursed to the Trustee.
The Board has analyzed their policy and made these adjustments in establishing
guidelines and controls over the travel process. This ties in with the controls
already established under the approval and reimbursement process.
Allowable class of service:
Non-refundable electronic tickets will be purchased by OP&F for travelers. Any
changes to airline reservation may result in change fees and difference in
airfare. These fees vary depending on the individual carrier. If a change
results from a work related incident, the Fund will pay the associated fees. If
the change results from non-work related incident the traveler is responsible
for the charges incurred. All changes must be documented on the travel change
request form submitted to purchasing.
All travelers will receive a pre-paid calling card with 120 minutes to conduct
business/personal calls while traveling. For trips in excess of three days, the
traveler will receive two (2) pre-paid calling cards. These phone cards are to
be used in place of calling directly from hotel, etc. You may use them at pay
phones as well. The Fund is aware that certain hotels will still charge the
surcharge for use of room phone. Due to the nominal dollar amount, calling
cards may be kept and do not have to be returned to Purchasing upon return.
Board and Staff travel had been part of the internal audit four-year plan for
review. With the changes made above and the events that have occurred, an
internal audit review of Board and Staff travel will be conducted semi-annually
as part of the audit schedule.