To improve its internal controls, better control costs, and prevent abuse from occurring, the city should revise its travel and expense reimbursement policy to be clear about the expenditure limits for meals, and add a limit for lodging accommodations.
The City has updated its Expense Reimbursement Policy twice, once in October 2013 and again in December 2013. Section XII of the current policy, adopted December 17, 2013 via Resolution No. 2013-100, sets forth the expenditure limits for meals based on the lowest IRS standard rate. Section XIII sets forth the expenditure limits for lodging based on the maximum group rate (if for a conference), the government rate, or the IRS rate for the given area.
By the August 20, 2013 City Council meeting, the Finance Director will prepare and present for City Council adoption, an amendment to the City of Vernon Travel and Expense Reimbursement Policy (Resolution No. 2011-187), to provide greater clarity and enhance provisions regarding meal and hotel costs, and ensure that the City's guidelines are consistent with those of the Federal Government.
The city indicates that by July 2013, the finance director will prepare and present for city council adoption, an amendment to the city's travel and expense reimbursement policy to provide greater clarity and enhance provisions regarding meal and hotel costs, and ensure the city's guidelines are consistent with those of the federal government.
The city did not address this recommendation in its August 2012 response. (See 2013-406, p. 194)
†Response Type refers to the interval in which the auditee is providing the State Auditor with their status in implementing recommendations made in an audit report. Auditees must submit a response regarding their progress in implementing recommendations from our reports at three intervals from the release of the report: 60 days, six months, and one year or subsequent to one year.
*Agency responses received after June 2013 are posted verbatim.