13-2203. Additional expenditures; governing body; powers; procedures.

In addition to other expenditures authorized by law, each governing body may approve:

(1)(a) The expenditure of public funds for the payment or reimbursement of actual and necessary expenses incurred by elected and appointed officials, employees, or volunteers at educational workshops, conferences, training programs, official functions, hearings, or meetings, whether incurred within or outside the boundaries of the local government, if the governing body gave prior approval for participation or attendance at the event and for payment or reimbursement either by the formal adoption of a uniform policy or by a formal vote of the governing body. Authorized expenses may include:

(i) Registration costs, tuition costs, fees, or charges;

(ii) Mileage at the rate allowed by section 81-1176 or actual travel expense if travel is authorized by commercial or charter means; and

(iii) Meals and lodging at a rate not exceeding the applicable federal rate unless a fully itemized claim is submitted substantiating the costs actually incurred in excess of such rate and such additional expenses are expressly approved by the governing body; and

(b) Authorized expenditures shall not include expenditures for meals of paid members of a governing body provided while such members are attending a public meeting of the governing body unless such meeting is a joint public meeting with one or more other governing bodies;

(2) The expenditure of public funds for:

(a) Nonalcoholic beverages provided to individuals attending public meetings of the governing body; and

(b) Nonalcoholic beverages and meals:

(i) Provided for any individuals while performing or immediately after performing relief, assistance, or support activities in emergency situations, including, but not limited to, tornado, severe storm, fire, or accident;

(ii) Provided for any volunteers during or immediately following their participation in any activity approved by the governing body, including, but not limited to, mowing parks, picking up litter, removing graffiti, or snow removal; or

(iii) Provided at one recognition dinner each year held for elected and appointed officials, employees, or volunteers of the local government. The maximum cost per person for such dinner shall be established by formal action of the governing body, but shall not exceed twenty-five dollars. An annual recognition dinner may be held separately for employees of each department or separately for volunteers, or any of them in combination, if authorized by the governing body; and

(3) The expenditure of public funds for plaques, certificates of achievement, or items of value awarded to elected or appointed officials, employees, or volunteers, including persons serving on local government boards or commissions. Before making any such expenditure, the governing body shall, by official action after a public hearing, establish a uniform policy which sets a dollar limit on the value of any plaque, certificate of achievement, or item of value to be awarded. Such policy, following its initial adoption, shall not be amended or altered more than once in any twelve-month period.

Source:Laws 1993, LB 734, ยง 11.