EFFECTIVE DATE: November 11, 2020
ISSUE #: 4
PRESIDENT: Dr. Antonio D. Tillis (Interim)
This policy statement prescribes the guidelines to be followed by University of Houston-Downtown (UHD) employees regarding business entertainment to ensure prudent control of
2.1 Entertainment expenses: Expenditures for food, beverages and tickets for shows or
athletic events which involve one or more University employees and/or one or more
guests and services provided for entertainment purposes (e.g., musicians).
3.1 UHD recognizes that business entertainment can be essential to the operation of the
University. This policy specifies the conditions under which business entertainment is
appropriate. These guidelines shall apply to all University funds, except those funds
appropriated by the State of Texas, which cannot be expended for business
entertainment under any circumstances. Please refer to Food and Entertainment
Expense Account/Fund Restrictions for details.
3.2 The purpose of the entertainment must be related to UHD business.
3.3 Entertainment expenditures must be documented to show the following:
3.3.1 Identification of the persons or group being entertained. If a small group is
being entertained (ten or fewer), the names of all attendees should be provided;
for large groups (greater than 10), only the name of the guest(s) of honor should
be provided along with the number of attendees.
3.3.2 A statement indicating the reason for such entertainment. The statement must
reflect how the entertainment will benefit UHD and how the attendees will
contribute towards the programs or activities being targeted (In the case of those
funded from sponsored project funds, the benefit to the specified sponsored
3.3.3 The place of entertainment.
3.3.5 The date of the entertainment. If alcoholic beverages were served, the time that
alcohol was served is also required.
3.3.6 Approval from the responsible vice president if business meal total, including
tax and gratuity (not to exceed 20%), is over $100 per person. The only
exception to the $100 person limit is business meals involving the President,
since it is sometimes necessary to exceed that amount when the President meets
with distinguished guests. Business meals involving the President will be paid
or reimbursed based on actual expenses, including gratuity, that are supported
3.4 Receipts for entertainment expenses are required for reimbursement to faculty or staff
members. If payment is to be made to a vendor, the original invoice or statement of cost
3.5 Payment for entertainment expenditures will not be made unless the documentation is
complete. A request for required documentation will be forwarded to the appropriate
authority when additional information or paperwork is necessary. If appropriate action
is not taken to properly document the expenditure, the individual staff or faculty
member must bear the cost of the entertainment.
3.6 Entertainment expenditures are not reimbursable through the petty cash fund, as
denoted in PS 05.A.04.
3.7 Approval must be given by the employee’s supervisor or higher authority, as described
in PS 05.A.02, for all payments. Expense reimbursements for the President will be
approved by the Chancellor.
3.8 Entertainment expenses cannot be charged to UHD contracts or grants unless such
entertainment is specifically authorized by the terms of the contract or grant.
3.8.1 Travel funded by Fund 5 cost centers must be approved by the Associate Vice
President, Faculty, Research and Sponsored Programs or his/her designee.
3.9 The following are the categories of entertainment recognized by UHD.
3.9.1 Prospective Faculty and Staff. UHD recruits faculty and staff in a highly
competitive market. It is the University’s policy to invite prospective faculty
and staff, and on occasion, both candidate and spouse, to visit the University.
Travel and other reasonable expenses for such activities are reimbursable under
3.9.2 Official Guests of the University. UHD is not normally expected to reimburse
official guests for travel and related expenses, except when the guests travel to
the University on specific invitation. Examples of official guests are as follows:
visitors from other countries, representatives of research organizations, visitors
from other universities, guests invited to assist in the development of new
programs (both paid and non-paid consultants), and business and community
leaders from Houston, the Gulf Coast region, and the State at large. The
relationship between the visitor and UHD faculty and staff attending the
function must be clearly indicated, particularly for those visitors who are on
specific business on behalf of UHD.
3.9.3 Conference, workshops, meetings and seminars. Entertainment expenses
incurred while hosting these functions are reimbursable, provided appropriate
documentation is presented, as indicated above. In the event the activity is
supported by income from registration fees, all expenses, including
entertainment, must be covered by the revenue produced by the event.
3.9.4 Receptions. Receptions held by the President and other designated campus
officials shall be reimbursed as entertainment.
3.9.5 Club Memberships and the University of Houston Hilton Hotel. Certain
officers, as part of the employment contract to carry out designated official
responsibilities, have club dues paid in part by UHD. Should there be charges of
a personal nature, then the employee shall deduct that amount from the bill and
remit that portion directly to the club. Entertainment of a personal nature will
not be charged to University accounts at the University of Houston Hilton
3.9.6 Spousal Travel and Entertainment. UHD recognizes the vital role a President’s
spouse can play in representing the University, and guidelines for
appropriateness, approval and reimbursement of travel and entertainment
expenditures are discussed in UHS Administrative Memorandum 03.A.21.
There are no procedures associated with this policy.
Responsible Party (Reviewer): Vice President for Administration and Finance
Review: Every three years on or before April 1st
Signed original on file in Employment Services and Operations.
Issue #1: 03/23/94
Issue #2: 10/13/99
Issue #3: 03/25/15
SAM 03.A.21, Employee’s Family Travel Expenses
PS 05.A.02, Signature Authority of University Funds
PS 05.A.04, Petty Cash Policy
Food and Entertainment Expense Account/Fund Restrictions