Pursuant to 80.45A, beginning Jan. 1, 2022, all in-state lodging providers must complete the Department of Public Safety’s Human Trafficking Prevention Training certification to receive public funds for University of Iowa employee lodging, conferences, meetings, banquets, or any state-funded event. All of the lodging provider’s employees must complete the training to be certified.

If a lodging provider is not certified, state funds cannot be used for travel reimbursement or any other expense. Purchasing has reached out to all the local contracted hotels to encourage their compliance.

This means beginning January 1, 2022, University of Iowa employees must confirm a lodging provider has received the Human Trafficking Prevention Training certification at https://stophtiowa.org/certified-locations prior to expending or committing public funds for in-state travel lodging, conferences, meetings, banquets, or any state-funded event. Employees who stay at non-certified facilities will not be reimbursed.

Frequently asked questions

This law applies only to public employees – UI employees, state agency employees, other board of regent employees, etc.  If a visitor, speaker, vendor, etc is a public employee and UI is paying for lodging expenses, this law applies to those expenses.

Student org travel should not be impacted. If a student is also an employee, it depends on the capacity they are traveling in. If traveling as an employee, it applies.  If traveling as a student, it does not.

All funding sources managed through university accounts. 

The law prohibits the expenditure of "public funds" as that term is defined in Iowa Code 12C.1.  12C.1 defines public funds as, in pertinent part:   (1) The moneys of the state or a political subdivision or instrumentality of the state including a county, school corporation, special district, drainage district, unincorporated town or township, municipality, or municipal corporation or any agency, board, or commission of the state or a political subdivision. Moneys of the state include moneys which are transmitted to a depositary for purposes of completing an electronic financial transaction pursuant to section 159.35.


If the hotel is certified, the traveler does not need to provide documentation. The traveler does need to document why they were unable to stay at a certified hotel when one is available within a reasonable distance (15-20 miles) of their destination.

The state law does not apply to federal grants/contracts.

If lodging is not being paid for by university funding, the law does not apply.

Per Iowa Code, lodging is defined as rooms, apartments, or sleeping quarters in a hotel, motel, inn, public lodging house, rooming house, cabin, apartment, residential property, or manufactured or mobile home which is tangible personal property, or in a tourist court, or in any place where sleeping accommodations are furnished to transient guests for rent, whether with or without meals. Lodging does not include conference, meeting, or banquet rooms that are not used for or offered as part of sleeping accommodations.

Purely academic fellowships are not an employment relationship, and therefore the law does not apply to these individuals. In a purely academic fellowship, little service is provided by the fellow to the university. A medical fellowship in healthcare has employment characteristics. Individuals at the university for a medical fellowship are in scope of the law.

Tribal hotels are not subject to Iowa hotel motel tax, so they would not have to be certified.