The General Services Administration (GSA) announced that daily Per Diem rates in Standard areas for lodging ($77) and meals and incidental expenses (M&IE—$46) will remain unchanged for FY 2012. The Standard area rate covers most of the 2,600 continental US (CONUS) counties.
However, the daily lodging rates for many of the almost 400 Non-Standard areas (NSAs), for which rates are set individually, will show some increase. A few NSAs will experience small decreases in the lodging rate. GSA notes that while the lodging rate increase in many NSAs indicates some recovery in the lodging industry, rates have not returned their highs of 2008. M&IE rates for all NSAs remain unchanged from FY2011, ranging between $46 and $71.
GSA also changed the Standard and NSA designations for some areas for FY2012. One area (Alexandria/Leesville/Natchitoches, LA) will become a new NSA. Five areas that had been NSAs will be moved to Standard rates: Stockton, CA; Lake Charles, LA; Robinsonville, MS; Tulsa, OK; and Bremerton, WA.
Eight areas currently with Standard rates will return to NSA rates: Montgomery, AL; Ocala, FL; Michigan City, IN; Benton Harbor, MI; Mackinac Island, MI; Mount Pleasant, MI; Jefferson City, MO; and Sheboygan, WI.
GSA sets for locations in CONUS. These rates are the maximum amounts a federal employee can receive as reimbursement for allowable expenses while on official duty travel. A table on the GSA website shows the Standard lodging and M&IE rates and all Individual NSA rates for FY2012.