As you may be aware, every county was awarded HAVA funding for professional training under the County Education Fund. That funding can be used to come to Austin to be trained on the TEAM system. However, before a county can draw down the funding, the County Judge, as chief executive officer for the county, must submit a budget via the Texas HAVA online grant system and be approved by our office. Accordingly, you’ll need to work with your County Judge’s office to submit the budget via the online grant system.
If the county has already submitted a budget for the County Education Fund, a grant adjustment can be processed to amend the budget. The only information that needs to be inputted into the online grant system is as follows:
|Select “Travel” from the dropdown menu.|
|Type “Name of Seminar - Austin Texas - MM/DD/06 to MM/DD/06" (enter actual dates of travel).|
|Enter total expense amount needed for travel, i.e. rental car, airfare, hotel and meals.|
The county should already be familiar with the online grant system because of the voting system acquisition process in response to HAVA. For further information on completing and submitting the budgets as well as illustrations of budget examples, refer to the “Guide to the Texas HAVA Grant Process and the Online Grant System,” located on the Texas Secretary of State's website in both (Word, 420kb) and (PDF, 120kb).
Once the budget is submitted via the online grant system and approved by the SOS, the Financial Officer for the county (auditor or treasurer, depending on the county) has access to request reimbursement. Counties are asked to limit small cash draws as it is not cost-effective for the state to process. For example, collect all of the expenditures (receipts, etc.) for a trip and request one reimbursement as opposed to multiple requests.
Below are the guidelines that are included in the grant award agreement with the county:
- The county must use the state lodging, mileage, and per diem rates or the county rates, whichever is less.
- All reimbursements are limited to the actual cost of meals.
- Claims may not include: alcoholic beverages, tips, room service, or expenses for any person other than the traveling employee.
- Claims may only be made for travel outside of the employee’s headquartering city.
The following are the current applicable state rates for travel:
- Lodging: Up to $85.00 per day.
- Meals: Overnight Travel - up to $36.00 per day; Non-overnight Travel - $0.
- Mileage: 50 cents per mile (as of Jan. 1, 2010).
The following receipts must be retained for audit purposes but do not need to be submitted for reimbursement:
- Lodging - check-out document reflecting zero balance due (itemized charges).
- Parking fees incurred for personal vehicle or car rental.
- Taxi fares - date, destination, and amount (purpose of trip).
- Gasoline purchased for rental car.
- Auto rental contract and receipt.
- Air fare receipt.