[FTR Per Diem Bulletin 03-3]

            Federal Travel Regulation; Maximum Per Diem Rates for Colorado, New York, Texas, and Utah

AGENCY:  Office of Governmentwide Policy, General Services Administration (GSA).

ACTION:  Notice of revised continental United States (CONUS) per diem rates.

SUMMARY:  To improve the ability of the per diem rates to meet the lodging demands of Federal travelers to high cost travel locations, the General Services Administration (GSA) has integrated the contracting mechanism of the new Federal Premier Lodging Program (FPLP) into the per diem rate-setting process.  An analysis of FPLP contracting actions and the lodging rate survey data reveals that the maximum per diem rate for the State of Colorado, city of Colorado Springs, including El Paso County; State of New York, borough of Brooklyn; State of Texas, city of Austin, including Travis County, and city of Houston, including Harris County; and State of Utah, city of Salt Lake City, including Salt Lake County, should be adjusted to provide for the reimbursement of Federal employees’ lodging expenses covered by the per diem.  This bulletin amends the final rule published in the Federal Register on August 30, 2002 and amended on November 18, 2002, May 9, 2003, and May 28, 2003, by adjusting the maximum lodging amounts in the prescribed areas.  This bulletin also eliminates seasonal rates for the State of Colorado, City of Colorado Springs, Colorado.

DATES:        This bulletin is effective August 19, 2003, and applies to travel performed 15 days after this date.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For clarification of content, contact Joddy P. Garner, Office of Governmentwide Policy, Travel Management Policy, at (202) 501-4857.  Please cite FTR Per Diem Bulletin 03-3.


A.  Background

    In the past, properties in high cost travel areas have been under no obligation to provide lodging to Federal travelers at the prescribed per diem rate. Thus, GSA established the FPLP to contract directly with properties in high cost travel markets to make available a set number of rooms to Federal travelers at contract rates.  FPLP contract results along with the lodging survey data are integrated together to determine reasonable per diem rates that more


accurately reflect lodging costs in these areas. In


addition, the FPLP will enhance the Government’s ability to


better meet its overall room night demand, and allow


travelers to find lodging close to where they need to


conduct business.  After an analysis of this additional


data, the maximum lodging amounts published in the Federal


Register at 67 FR 56160, August 30, 2002 and amended at 67


FR 69634, November 18, 2002, 68 FR 25034, May 9, 2003, and


68 FR 31706, May 28, 2003, are being changed in those areas


listed in the Summary, above.  This bulletin also eliminates


seasonal rates for the State of Colorado, city of Colorado


Springs, including El Paso County, and also gives the State


of New York, borough of Brooklyn, a separate per diem rate. 


Previously, the per diem rate for Brooklyn was included in


the per diem rate for Bronx and Queens.

B.  Change in standard procedure

    Per diem rates change more frequently than other information contained in the FTR.  Effective April 28, 2003, GSA changed the travel procedure to allow the Office of Governmentwide Policy (OGP), GSA, to issue/publish Appendix A per diem rates on the GSA website.  FTR Per Diem Bulletins supersede Appendix A to Chapter 301 (41 CFR Chapter 301). This will ensure timely notification of any increase or decrease in per diem rates established by GSA for Federal employees on official travel within the continental United States (CONUS).  Per diem rates will be published on the internet at as an FTR Per Diem Bulletin and published in the Federal Register on a periodic basis.  This bulletin gives notice of a revision in per diem rates prescribed by OGP for CONUS. Per Diem Bulletins published periodically in the Federal Register now constitute the only notification of revisions in CONUS per diem rates to agencies.  The text of the Bulletin follows:


Maximum per diem rates for official travel in the continental United States (CONUS) by Federal Government employees as prescribed in FTR Per Diem Bulletin 03-2:



                            Lodging  M&IE    Per Diem

Locality                    Amount   Rate    Rate

(A)         +  (B)  =  (C)




(Remove the seasonal entries)


Colorado Springs (El Paso County)    $79     +    $42  =  $121




(Remove "Brooklyn" from the entry that includes Bronx and Queens and add the following separate entry for Brooklyn.)



                                        $198     +  $46  =  $244



Austin (Travis County)             $83     +  $42   =  $125


Houston (Harris County)             $87     +  $46   =  $133




Salt Lake City (Salt Lake County)      $80     +  $38  =  $118









G. Martin Wagner

Associate Administrator