Approval to Exceed GSA Lodging for AGU 2021
This letter from SARA is to issue a waiver for NASA grantees attending the 2021 AGU meeting in New Orleans, allowing them to be reimbursed out of their grants for their actual lodging, although it's expected to be above the approved GSA amount. Note, I have specified grants (including cooperative agreements). This may also apply to those traveling on NASA contracts, but they should communicate with their contracting officers.
The hotel list for the AGU 2021 may be found at https://www.agu.org/Fall-Meeting/Pages/Register-Housing/Housing. The average nightly rate for a single is slightly over $190, significantly more than the GSA-allowed daily lodging expense for December 2021 for New Orleans of $136 per night.
Grantee travelers may need a waiver to cover lodging in excess of the GSA value, depending on the travel policy of your organization. This waiver does not supersede the travel policy of your institution if it is more restrictive.
By the power invested in me by the NSSC to issue approval of the actual lodging costs for a conference in "bulk" instead of individual approvals, I hereby affirm that, for the December 2021 AGU meeting, NASA SMD grants may be charged up to $190/night plus tax, consistent with the average actual average costs of participating hotels, even though this exceeds the $136 allotted for lodging by GSA for New Orleans in December 2021.