Expense Accounts

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The county legislative body may (or may not) by resolution elect to pay the expenses of salaried officials, and may promulgate rules specifying how expenses will be reimbursed and what expenses are reimbursable.  In counties providing reimbursement, the county mayor prescribes forms, examines expense reports or vouchers to assure items are legally reimbursable and properly filed, and forwards proper expense reports to the disbursing officer (usually the trustee) for payment.  In counties with populations of one hundred thousand (100,000) or more, salaried county officials must be reimbursed for the actual expenses incurred as an incident to holding office, including but not limited to lodging while away on official business and travel on official business, both within and outside the county.  The county legislative body in these counties may, by resolution, determine what other expenses are reimbursable. T.C.A. § 8-26-112.

Before any expenses can be reimbursed, the official must submit accurate, itemized expense accounts, showing the date and amount of each item and the purpose for which the item was expended.  The official must also take an oath stating that the expense account is correct and that it was actually incurred in the performance of an official duty.  Receipts should be obtained and attached to the expense voucher whenever practical; vouchers are required to be numbered and referred to by number.  T.C.A. § 8-26-109.  Making a false oath on an expense account is perjury. T.C.A. § 8‑26‑111.

Automobiles.  Counties are authorized to provide automobiles or monthly car allowances to any salaried county official who is paid from county funds and who holds office by election of the people, by election of the county legislative body, or by election of any other county board or commission, and any clerk or master appointed by a chancellor.  T.C.A. § 8-26-113.