Host-related Expenditures

Revised Winter 2019


Host expenditures may be incurred by or on behalf of employees or guests of the institution in the conduct of necessary business activities. Hosting must provide a benefit to the institution through the establishment of goodwill, promotion of programs, or the creation of opportunities in which the mission of the institution may be advanced.

Host expenses are limited to:

  • Meals/Food
  • Beverages
  • Flowers
  • Small gifts

All expenditures that are essential and part of a program, such as faculty and student recruitment activities, marketing, employee professional development, participant-funded events, and food supplied for academic programs are normal operating expenses and not host expenditures.

Host Expenses and Restrictions

Exceptions to these restrictions must be approved in advance by the President in writing. All exceptions must still comply with NSHE and BOR policies.

  1. Administrative Division Retreats

    Food and beverage expenses incurred for a retreat which is defined as a special event where the only participants are institutional employees or board members in which the primary goal of the event is a planning and/or training session that may include consultants or outside facilitators as well as college community members are considered host expenses.

    1. No more than four retreats may be held in an Administrative Division per year.
  2. Institutional Event or Activity

    Food and beverage expenses incurred for regular, annual institutional events such as spring and fall kick-off, commencement, classified symposium, or employee recognition are considered host expenses. Incidental expenses such as food service items and table linens, unless included as part of a catered event, are not host expenses when purchased separately. Production costs for invitations and programs are not host expenses.

  3. Meetings: On-campus

    Meals/food purchased for extended meetings only attended by institution employees should be infrequent and will only be eligible for host support if scheduling during normal meal times is unavoidable. Extended meetings are meetings three or more hours in a single day and may cross over a normal meal time.

    1. Meals/food for advisory board/committee meetings are considered host expenses.
    2. Only one hosted meeting for staff per quarter (four per year) per Host Account Manager.
    3. Hosted staff meetings may only be held on campus.
    4. Meals/food purchased may not exceed the number of individuals expected to participate.
    5. Required documentation for hosted meetings: a published agenda, a list or roster of invitees, and an attendee sign-in sheet.
    6. Light refreshments only (coffee, water, pastries) can be served throughout the day.
    7. Breakfast meetings must begin no later than 8 a.m.
    8. Lunch meetings must be held between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. Exceptions must be approved by the Office of the President.
    9. Dinner meetings cannot begin earlier than 5 p.m.
  4. Meetings: Off-campus

    Meals at off-campus restaurants are appropriate host expenses if the purpose of the activity is business-related and intended to promote goodwill with external (non-employee) constituents.

    1. Meals at off-campus restaurants where the attendees are only internal institutional employees must be pre-approved by the Office of the President.
    2. While traveling on business, employees cannot claim a host expense for meals covered by per diem or the balance of a meal exceeding allowable per diem amount.
    3. Required documentation:
      1. Business purpose must include what was discussed at the meeting or an agenda, attendee name(s), and their relationship to the institution.
      2. A detailed purchasing/credit card receipt showing number of meals, total cost, alcohol (see section 2.8 below), and tax* must be uploaded.
      3. The purchasing/credit card receipt must show the amount of the tip which may not exceed 20%. Reimbursement to the college will be required for any amount exceeding 20%.

        *NSHE institutions are exempt from Nevada sales tax; individuals will be required to reimburse the college for any Nevada sales tax paid.

  5. Professional Networking Activity

    Tickets purchased for a business-related mealtime activity for professional networking or community advocacy events, such as WINN breakfast, Marketing Association luncheons, EDAWN Opportunity Zone Summit* are considered host expenses but do not count towards the $30,000 table limit set by NSHE.

    *This is not an exhaustive list of events; please consult with the Office of the President if inquiring about a specific event.

  6. Social Events

    Refreshments purchased for employee social events where the primary focus is on consumption of food, rather than conducting business or employee recognition, are limited and must be pre-approved by the Office of the President. A verified approval email from the Office of the President must be attached to the host submission.

  7. Snacks and Beverages

    Snacks and beverage items purchased for business meetings with official administrative functions such as advisory boards or institutional committees may be necessary and for these extended meetings are allowable hosting expenses.

    1. The purchase of snacks and beverages for personal consumption in staff offices or general reception areas (i.e. coffee, soft drinks, bottled water, disposable paper and plastic ware, water delivery or filtered water service, etc.), is strictly prohibited.
  8. Alcoholic Beverages

    Alcoholic consumption must comply with the policies outlined in the Board of Regents handbook Title 4, Chapter 1, Section 10. The purchase of alcohol with institutional funds, regardless of the type of funding, is subject to the following limitations:

    1. The purchase of alcoholic beverages is only appropriate for official institutional functions such as receptions and special events where the serving of alcohol is usual and customary and must be pre-approved by the Office of the President. A verified approval email from the Office of the President must be attached to the host submission.
    2. Reimbursement to an employee for personal consumption of alcohol while in travel status is prohibited.
  9. Flowers

    Flowers purchased for condolences or recognition such as retirement are considered host expenses. Flowers and other decorations purchased for official college events or functions such as pinning ceremonies or commencement are considered operating expenses.

  10. Host Expenditures that can only be made through the Office of the President

    1. Small Gifts: Small gifts purchased for specific individuals (i.e. students, faculty, staff, community members) as an expression of gratitude, appreciation, or recognition are permissible host expenses but can only be purchased after pre-approval from the Office of the President. This includes employee exemplary service recognition (such as a plaque, or personal item). A verified approval email from the Office of the President must be attached to the host submission.
      1. Small gifts in this context are $75.00 or less.
      2. The purchase of gift certificates or gift cards is strictly prohibited.
    2. Table Purchases: Table purchases are limited to $30,000 annually by NSHE policy. Any purchase of tables (including individual seats) or sponsorships at charity events, fundraisers, or award ceremonies are coordinated and pre-approved through the Office of the President who tracks the institution's annual limit on table purchases. Chapter 5, Section 1.7 of the NSHE Procedures and Guidelines Manual must be followed. A verified approval email from the Office of the President must be attached to the host submission.
      1. Purchases of four (4) or more tickets or seats is considered a table purchase and must be coordinated through the Office of the President.
      2. Purchases of up to three (3) tickets or seats are considered host but do not count towards the table limit.
      3. Tickets purchased for professional networking and community advocacy events (see section 2.5 above) are considered host expenses but do not count as a table purchase.

Program (Operating) Expenses

Food and beverages that are an essential part of a program may be considered normal operating expenses and not host expenses:

  • Faculty and Executive Search/Recruitment
  • Prospective Student Recruitment Activities
  • Employee Professional Development
  • Participant-funded Events
  • Food for Academic Programs
  • Marketing
  1. Faculty and Executive Search/Recruitment

    Meals served to candidates and search committee members as part of a search process for faculty (administrative or academic) or executive positions are considered program expenses. These expenditures are paid by the Human Resources Department.

  2. Prospective Student Recruitment Activities

    Food and beverage purchases for events held for the recruitment of prospective students are considered program expenses.

    • Individuals who have matriculated to TMCC are no longer considered prospective students.
    • Food and beverage purchases for events consisting of both prospective and current students do not qualify as a program expense.
  3. Employee Professional Development

    Food and beverages purchased for professional development training programs are considered program expenses and must have the following elements:

    1. Training is coordinated and scheduled through the Professional Development Office or facilitated by a subject matter expert approved by the Professional Development Office;
    2. Training must be clearly defined with a training outline with topics and objectives;
    3. There must be a participant assessment of the training;
    4. There must be a list of participants and a sign-in sheet;
    5. Description of training must state that refreshments will be served.

    To verify your training program meets these criteria, please submit this Professional Development Checklist Form.

    The following events are NOT considered professional development:

    • Retreats
    • Regularly scheduled meetings
    • Regularly scheduled events such as an annual orientation, day to compile assessment results, etc.
  4. Participant-funded Events

    TMCC-hosted events where participants pay admission that includes the cost of food and beverages served qualify as a program expense. Marketing and documentation for the event must clearly show that refreshments are included.

  5. Food for Academic Programs

    Food and beverages purchased for teaching an academic program such as Culinary Arts and the Child Care Center are considered program expenses, not host expenses.

  6. Marketing

    Food and beverages purchased for events and activities that promote the college and/or its programs to the external community are considered program expenses, not host expenses and must be coordinated through the Marketing and Communications Office. Examples could include groundbreaking ceremonies where community members and board members are present or a booth at a community event.

Prizes and Swag

Prizes and SWAG are not qualifying host expenses. All TMCC promotional items must be coordinated and purchased through the Marketing and Communications department.

  • Prizes

    Unlike small gifts, a prize is merchandise or other product that will be given as part of a contest or raffle drawing to an individual who is unknown at the time of purchase.

    Generally, prizes can only be purchased with non-state funds. Exceptions, however, are allowed for prizes purchased for Prospective Student Recruitment, Employee Professional Development, and Marketing. Resources for the purchase of prizes may be available through the TMCC Foundation and/or the Office of the President. Contact those offices for more information.

    Note: These items could be considered taxable income at fair market value and recipients may be required to provide a completed W-9 form to the institution that will be used for issuing a 1099 form for tax purposes.

  • Promotional Items (SWAG)

    Marketing merchandise or products promoting a specific College event, campaign, or other function that are distributed at no cost to participants are considered a program expense and may be purchased with state operating funds.

    A large selection of official TMCC merchandise is available at

    TMCC promotional items purchased from other vendors must be coordinated through the Marketing and Communications department. To ensure proper branding (colors, logos) and for assistance with approvals, please submit this Custom TMCC-Branded Products Request Form.

Prohibited Purchases

As general policy guidance, the following are not host or program expenditures and may not be purchased with any institutional funds. This is not an exhaustive list; if you have specific questions please contact the VPFA or Budget and Planning offices.

  1. Greeting cards and decorations for holidays or birthdays.
  2. Snacks and beverages for personal consumption (i.e. coffee, soft drinks, bottled water, disposable paper and plastic ware, water delivery or filtered water service, etc.).
  3. Supplies for personal consumption.
  4. Flowers/plants for office decorations.


Host expenditures may only be charged to a designated TMCC Host Account with the following appropriate Workday Codes:

Spend Category

  • SC0183 Food
  • SC0492 Catering/Banquet Services
  • SC0206 Flowers
  • SC0206 Small Gifts
  • SC0731 Meals: Non-travel

Detail Code

  • DC003 Accreditation/Program
  • DC004 Athletics Program
  • DC005 Community Goodwill
  • DC006 Employee Goodwill
  • DC007 Fundraising
  • DC008 Government Relations
  • DC009 Grant Funded Hosting
  • DC010 Department Meetings
  • DC015 Student Life and Government
  • Host Account Managers may designate up to two people in the unit as Host Account Assistants per host account.
  • Only the Host Account Manager and identified Host Account Assistants may complete the host expense submission form.
  • Host expense submissions will route to each Host Account Manager for review and approval, then to the Host Account Manager’s supervisor.

See Also: Host Expense Submission and Approval Workflow