Employees are classified as intra-state travelers when they travel within the State of Alabama but outside their base area on authorized UAB business. For employees based at the main Birmingham campus, the base area is defined as the corporate city limits of the City of Birmingham, Alabama.
State law specifies that an employee in intra-State travel status shall be paid a travel allowance to cover all meals and lodging costs. The travel allowance rates for full per diems and for meal allowances are fixed by the Governor of the State. State regulations specify that no travel allowance shall be paid for a trip of less than six hours. If the employee's travel is interrupted for personal convenience or through the taking of official leave, the travel allowance may not exceed the costs which would have been incurred for authorized uninterrupted travel.
Per Diem-Overnight Stay Required: For intra-state employee travel where an overnight stay is required, a per diem allowance for each full day or fraction thereof shall be paid for meals and lodging. The per diem allowance is currently $75.00 per day where an overnight stay is required. When an employee is stationed at the same place in the State for a period in excess of two consecutive months, after two consecutive months, the per diem daily rate is reduced to $56.25. State regulations specify that individuals whose work hours are overnight (between sunset & sunrise) are considered to be in normal work status and therefore are not entitled to an overnight per diem.
Per Diem-Meal Allowances: For intra-state employee travel, current State regulations specify that individuals will be paid $11.25 for a trip greater than or equal to six hours but less than twelve hours and $30.00 for a trip of greater than or equal to 12 hours (without an overnight stay).
If the intra-state traveler takes a non-UAB person to meal for a legitimate business purpose, the non-UAB person's meal should be processed as entertainment (8351020) from a GL account. An itemized receipt is required to document the cost of the non-UAB person's meal. The UAB traveler is only entitled to applicable per diem amounts.
When an overnight stay is not required, IRS regulations require that these meal allowances are subject to federal tax, and therefore such meal allowances must be included in the traveler's taxable income and will appear on the employee's UAB Form W-2 Wage and Tax Statement.
Per Diem-Tips: The State Examiners consider the per diem allowance to include tips directly associated with meals and lodging (including tips paid to doormen, bellhops, waiters/waitresses, etc.). However, tips paid to persons other than hotel or restaurant employees (such as cab drivers, airport personnel, etc.) may be reimbursed in addition to the per diem allowance.