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:: Health and Fitness Reimbursement

USITC: FY-04-05
DATE: 03/19/04

Administrative Announcement

Subject: Procedures to Apply for Reimbursement for Health and Fitness Programs

1. Procedures to Apply for Reimbursement for Health and Fitness Programs

The Chairman has authorized the use of appropriated funds (5 U.S.C. 7901, Health Service Programs) to reimburse permanent employees of the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) a portion of the cost of health and fitness programs. Reimbursement is dependant upon the availability of funds. This Administrative Announcement provides information on how to apply to participate and receive reimbursement.

2. Policy on reimbursement of health fitness program fees.

In an effort to promote and maintain the physical and mental fitness of ITC employees, the ITC will reimburse health and fitness program costs up to 50 percent or a maximum of $270.00 a year.

3. Eligibility.

To be eligible for reimbursement of these costs, you must regularly participate in activities during the period for which you request reimbursement. Reimbursement will be for individual membership costs, tuition, and class fees incurred in the previous 12-month period. If you have a family membership, you must provide documentation of the cost for an individual membership and your 50 percent reimbursement will be based on that amount.

4. Covered programs.

Any formal class or instruction designed to improve health and/or fitness is covered. This includes, but is not limited to, commercial fitness centers, fitness classes (e.g., yoga, aerobics, spinning, body toning), and formal programs designed for weight loss and weight management. Items not covered include: initiation fees, books, video tapes, food, equipment, clothing, etc.

5. Program participation.

To participate you must complete a "Health Fitness Program Reimbursement Application" form and submit it to the Office of Administration (room 316). If you are uncertain as to what is and what is not covered, please contact Connie Speight at 205-3131 or your Human Resources representative before you submit your application.

For budgeting purposes, you are encouraged to submit the application form at the beginning of the fiscal year; however, it can be submitted at any time during the 12-month period. The application must be submitted each year. It is recommended that employees receive a medical examination prior to engaging in a fitness program. You are financially responsible for the medical examination. Official time to participate in fitness activities is not authorized. Employees may use fitness centers during their own time, such as lunch breaks or before/after work.

6. Reimbursement.

The ITC will reimburse membership fees (up to 50 percent or $270.00, whichever is less) with reimbursement in September for costs incurred in the previous 12 months. To obtain reimbursement you must provide the following documents to the Office of Administration by September 1:

a. Complete form "Health and Fitness Program Self Certification of Usage and Reimbursement Claim;" and

b. Your paid invoice(s) or other proof of payment for individual membership fees (such as bank statements).

Payment will be made through the Federal Personnel and Payroll System. The amount reimbursed to you is a taxable benefit (associated Federal, FICA, Medicare, State, and local taxes will be computed and assessed).

Falsification of information will result in immediate termination of your participation in the program without reimbursement for any expenses you have already incurred. In addition, you could be subject to appropriate disciplinary action.

7. Terminating Participation.

You may terminate your participation at any time by informing the Office of Administration in writing. You may still submit the above documentation for a prorated reimbursement for the period you participated.

The forms mentioned in this Administrative Announcement are available on the ITC Intranet. If you have any questions, please contact the Office of Administration on 205-3131.

___________________________

Stephen A. McLaughlin

Director

Office of Administration