Reimbursement Request Documentation

Every reimbursement request must include: 1) an itemized receipt that clearly describes what was purchased and 2) proof of payment that clearly demonstrates the employee incurred the expense. Encumbered tuition reimbursement funds will not be paid out until the employee provides clear documentation.

Purchases made via gift card, gift certificate, rewards, and/or frequent flier miles are UNACCEPTABLE methods of payment.

Acceptable proof of payment:

  • An uncropped cancelled check (front and back of check); or
  • Front of check and bank statement with employee name showing the check cleared; or
  • Redacted credit card statement with employee name, date, and line item expense.

Click HERE for proof of payment examples.

If a different name besides the employee’s name is listed on the proof of payment, the employee must provide an explanation. For example, "The cardholder is my parent, spouse, etc."

If another employee's name is listed on the proof of payment, the requester must provide the employee's proof of payment and demonstrate he/she repaid the employee who incurred the expense.

Travel Expenses

Please refer to your employee organization's Memoranda of Understanding to determine whether travel expenses are a reimbursable expense. If travel expenses are an eligible expense, employees are expected to obtain the lowest published routine fare for travel by the most efficient, direct and economical mode of transportation. Click HERE to view the Controller's Office Accounting Policies & Procedures (starting at page 179).

Air Travel

  • Air ticket must be purchased in advance to take advantage of the most economical fares available. Same day or near travel day ticket purchases are not reimbursable.
  • The comparative air fare quote must include round trip fares from the San Francisco Bay Area direct to/from the conference/training location. A quote from a City travel agent qualifies as a comparative air quote.
  • Airfare should be booked for economy/coach class only. Business or First class is not reimbursable. Upgrades are not reimbursable.
  • Air travel itinerary must be submitted with the reimbursement request.
  • If airline charges for checked luggage, only the cost of first checked bag will be reimbursed.


  • The employee will provide the conference brochure with lodging rates with the pre-approval request.
  • If the training does not provide official lodging sites, or the employee chooses non-conference lodging, the employee will be reimbursed up to the Federal per-diem rates listed in the Controller's Office Travel Reimbursement Guidelines. If conference-lodging rates exceed the Federal rate, actual expenses will be reimbursed when documentation of the conference lodging rate and a receipt are provided.


In situations where employees would normally travel by air, but an employee chooses to drive instead, reimbursement will be the lower of the two options, driving or flying. Maximum reimbursement will be up to the quoted cost of the air ticket.

Example: If an employee drives to Los Angeles instead of flying, the employee will be reimbursed mileage, up to the cost of an air ticket quote.

  • Please refer to the Controller's Office Business Travel Reimbursement Guidelines for the current mileage rate.
  • Employees must provide an online map and provide odometer readings for mileage reimbursement.

Transportation between worksite/home and airport within nine Bay Area Counties

  • Recommended options are public transportation or shuttle.
  • If using a taxi, maximum reimbursement is $50 each way, including tip, up to $100 total for the related travel.
  • If using a personal car, mileage is reimbursed up to $15 each way, maximum $30 for the related travel. Parking is limited to long-term parking only, maximum of $25 per day and up to $120 total for the travel. Employee discount tickets that allow you to park in the short term garages for $13 per day are available at City Hall or at the Airport.

Transportation between airport and hotel/conference site

  • Recommended options are public transportation, shuttle or taxi.