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Q. I have been invited to participate on a fact-finding trip paid for by a private source. Does the trip have to be reviewed by the Committee on Ethics? If so, how do I get the trip approved?
A. Pursuant to the House Rules, House Members and employees must obtain written Committee approval of privately sponsored travel PRIOR to traveling. To obtain approval for trips beginning on or after April 1, 2013, the traveler must submit to the Committee, more than 30 days in advance of travel, a complete Traveler Form and a Private Sponsor Travel Certification Form filled out by the private sponsor. For complete information, see Travel Regulations.
Q. I have been invited to travel overseas by a foreign government under the Mutual Educational and Cultural Exchange Act (MECEA). Do I have to obtain approval by the Committee on Ethics in order to participate? Do I have to file a post-travel disclosure form?
A. House Members and employees may accept travel paid for by a foreign government under MECEA without Committee review. While a post-travel form need not be filed, Members and senior staff must disclose MECEA travel on their annual Financial Disclosure Statement. For complete information, see House Ethics Manual, pp. 110-111.