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Hospitality Services Policy


West Virginia University Policy
Division of Administration and Finance


The purpose of the policy is to outline the proper use of West Virginia University (WVU) State or West Virginia University Research Corporation (WVURC) funds for Hospitality Expenses.


This policy applies to all WVU and WVURC employees, including those on the regional campuses.


Hospitality service is defined as:

"Food, Non-Alcoholic Beverages and related expenses for the reception of guests by a spending agency for a specific event or function related to conducting University business."

In the conduct of day-to-day business, it is anticipated that the University may incur meal or other hospitality expenses for its employees, students, or guests. In some circumstances, using prudent judgment, the University may incur appropriate hospitality expenses.

Allowable Expenses:

  1. University meeting with external parties (i.e. vendors, guests, consultants) for specific business purposes on a non-routine basis.
  2. University meeting with a candidate or potential candidate for an open position.
  3. Expenses related to student recruitment and student activities (activities specifically for students). 
  4. A non-routine event hosted by a department and specifically planned for participants of a conference, recognized university standing committee, seminar, workshop, or similar event. University employees may attend as registered attendees, host, or as assigned supporting staff. If the event includes only employees, an agenda must be prepared and approval must be given by the applicable Dean or AVP.
  5. Emergency situations where the operational requirements require working through a meal period and the food is brought into the work area. Please note: ‘Emergency’ shall not be used for hardship resulting from neglect, poor planning or lack of organization by the spending unit (i.e. any meal with the sole justification of “it is the only time we could meet”).
  6. Formally organized Division or College business meetings involving multiple departments. To qualify, an agenda must be prepared and approval must be given by the applicable Dean or AVP.

Unallowable Expenses:

The following are examples of expenses that are not permissible:

Any hospitality expenses paid using grant funds (unless specifically allowed in writing by the agency and approved in writing by the Sponsored Research Accounting Office).

  1. Employee only meetings within the same department.
  2. Meal expenses not permitted by the WVU/WVURC Travel Manual.
  3. Meals with new employees or employees leaving the University (i.e. new hires/exit interviews).
  4. Employee only social gatherings, such as:
    • Anniversaries
    • Birthday Parties
    • Holiday Parties
    • Promotion Parties

    For guidance on employee recognition and retirement events/gifts, please refer to the WV Ethics Commission:

    Please note: the examples listed above are not an all-inclusive list. If you have any questions regarding whether an event or item(s) are allowable, please contact Procurement, Contracting and Payment Services (PCPS) prior to the event at:   

    Hospitality While on Travel:

    Hospitality expenses while on travel are permitted, but shall be limited to the following:

    i. Fundraising/promotional/development meetings or events on behalf of WVU/WVURC as required as part of the employee’s job duties.

    Meals involving only WVU/WVURC employees are not permissible.  Meals with colleagues are not considered hospitality while on travel even if general business was discussed and are not permissible.  Allowable hospitality while on travel is limited to activities required as part of the employee’s job duties as outlined above.

    Any hospitality meal provided while in travel status must be deducted from the amount allotted for that particular meal per diem requests (using the GSA meals and incidentals breakdown) and must include required documentation.  Excess per diem allowances received is considered taxable income to the employee and possibly a violation of the WV State Ethics Act.

    Documentation Required:

    Hospitality expenses must include the following supporting information through the available notes fields in Mountaineer Marketplace or MyExpenses:

    i. Business purpose for the event. For internal business meetings, a copy of the meeting agenda must be included.

    ii.Original itemized invoice or receipt.

    iii. List of attendees and their relationship to WVU/WVURC if the event had less than 20 attendees. If the group was larger than 20 people, the group’s relationship to WVU/WVURC must be included in the business purpose.  Note: a sign in sheet is requested for tax reporting purposes on hospitality events with 20 or more individuals when attendees include guests of WVU employees.

    Hospitality expenses paid via PCard prior to the implementation of MyExpenses require the following:

    i. Completed WVU Hospitality/Event Form or other PCPS approved form, which must include the business purpose for the event and a list of attendees.

    ii. Signed approval from the Dean, Director, or Designee.

    iii. Signed approval from a Departmental Budget Officer.

    iv. Original itemized receipt.


    Procedure development rests with WVU Procurement, Contracting and Payment Services.


    All employees are charged with providing full support to this policy. It is the responsibility of the AVP/Dean or designee to implement this policy within their Division/College. Procurement, Contracting and Payment Services is available to answer questions or provide additional information regarding this policy. Please contact with questions.


    The responsibility for interpretation of this policy rests with Procurement, Contracting & Payment Services.

    Any exception to this policy must be obtained by the AVP of Procurement, Contracting & Payment Services or his/her designee before the expense is incurred.

    Effective Date: November 1, 2017


    David Beaver  
    AVP for Procurement, Contracting & Payment Services