FAQ for Planners and Speakers

Promotion for Programs & Events

The Conference Committee has provided a Promo Kit to help guide you in your shameless self-promotion. We encourage you to promote your program sessions and events early and often -- through email, social media, and word of mouth!

Dollars & Cents

Do speakers and moderators have to register for the conference? If a speaker is not registered for the conference, they can only attend the program at which they are presenting and visit the exhibits. They may not attend any other programs, special events or meal functions. We ask that all NJ librarians who are also speakers at the conference to support the professional association by registering for conference and allowing themselves the opportunity to experience the other events throughout the day. New Jersey librarians that do not officially register for the conference will receive special badges, valid only for the session or sessions in which they are speaking.

One of my speakers is a NJ librarian. How can we pay/reimburse for the speaker’s time and other costs? NJLA relies on the support of NJ librarians and library workers through membership and conference registration. We are grateful to our librarians for sharing their expertise, but also recognize the mutual benefit of the opportunities NJLA offers for professional growth and development. NJ librarians are not awarded honorariums, speaking costs, or reimbursements for travel, meals or hotel costs. Requests for these costs will not be approved on the program proposal. In some circumstances, requests for reimbursement of necessary materials can be negotiated.

How do I determine how much to pay the speaker we want for our program? First, consult the speaker reimbursement policy to determine what can be offered to the speaker (http://bit.ly/1M0QCXb). Secondly, ask the speaker what their usual honorarium is, or what their initial request for an honorarium would be for a library association event. NJ librarians and vendors are not normally reimbursed for participating as panelists or speakers.

If you have questions about the amount, email the Conference Committee BEFORE you confirm. If the amount is higher than we would like, we will ask you to attempt to negotiate, or ask if the speaker would consider offering more than one presentation while at the conference. We have had speakers agree to reduce their price because they are pleased to be by the ocean or they have family on the East Coast. It never hurts to ask.

An honorarium has been approved for my speaker. How do I obtain that honorarium for him/her? Even if a cost has been approved, you must fill out the reimbursement form AFTER the conference, and the NJLA office will send payment directly to the speaker. Only pre-approved costs will be reimbursed.

Food, Lodging, & Travel

My speaker will be staying at the hotel. Who should reserve the room? If your speaker is approved for overnight accommodations, you will receive confirmation of that. The Conference Committee makes the room reservations for invited speakers; ensuring that the hotel bills NJLA, not the speaker. Once room reservations are confirmed, you will receive information to share with your speaker. Neither you nor your speaker should make a reservation at the hotel. Reimbursements will not be issued for hotel costs for arrangements made directly by your or the speaker.

How can I get luncheon tickets for my speaker? Luncheon tickets are only available for speakers who are entitled to some type of meal reimbursement. Include a request for a luncheon ticket on the proposal form; if the request arises after the proposal date, send an email to the Conference Committee for approval. Additional luncheon tickets can be purchased through the NJLA Conference registration form or by emailing njla_office@njlamembers.org.

How can flight reservations be made? If your speaker is approved for travel, you will receive confirmation of that with the program acceptance letter. Speakers must make their own reservations for travel. Security issues make it very difficult for airline reservations to be made by another organization. Reservations (Economy class only, unless otherwise approved) should be made at least 3 weeks in advance for the best rates, and itinerary should be shared with the Conference Committee. A reimbursement form should accompany any other receipts or itinerary, and be submitted to the NJLA Office after the Conference.

If my speaker is taking a train, how can those arrangements be made? Like air transportation, if speakers are approved for travel, they will arrange for their own transportation by train or bus. Estimated (or exact) costs should be submitted to the Conference Committee in advance, and if possible, itinerary should be shared. A reimbursement form should accompany any other receipts or itinerary, and be submitted to the NJLA Office after the Conference.

How is travel from the airport  or train station arranged? We encourage any speaker who is willing to rent a car; the car rental rate is much less than a car service. In some cases, using a service like Lyft or Uber is also less expensive. However, if travel is approved and pickup is required, you must notify the Conference Committee and someone will make necessary car service arrangements.

My speaker will be driving their own vehicle. How does reimbursement work? Speakers will be reimbursed according to the current IRS rate and for tolls & parking. Receipts need to be included with the reimbursement form, so please remind your speaker to save them. All reimbursements are issued after the conference.

Workshop/Session Details

My speaker needs a laptop and/or projector. How do I arrange for that? Surprise! This year the Conference Committee has worked especially hard to be able to provide projectors AND laptops for all breakout program rooms. We are asking all presenters to submit their presentation at least three weeks prior to the first day of Conference; the Conference Committee will upload the presentation in advance to the laptop that will be in their presentation room so that there is no need for troubleshooting in the moments just before their scheduled program session. There is a risk to using a projector and laptop that have never worked with each other before; if your speakers feel more comfortable with their own equipment, they are still able to do that on their own, but should make sure to always test their equipment and presentations before their session.

We need photocopies for the audience handouts. How do I accomplish that? If your organization can subsidize the photocopies, NJLA will be deeply grateful. Otherwise, either your speaker or you can have the copies made at Kinko’s or Staples and submit a form for reimbursement. The NJLA Office cannot make copies for any program. The Conference Committee will make any digital handouts available on the Conference website at the conclusion of the event.

How can we request that seats in the room to be arranged in a particular way? Except for pre-conference and meal functions, rooms are set up theater-style and must remain that way. The quick turnover of programs throughout the day does not make it possible to change the arrangements of rooms. If you prefer to rearrange existing chairs and tables yourself anyway, you must leave the room as it was found following your program. You cannot necessarily get into a program room early, or stay in the room past the time slot for your program, to accommodate this. Please be courteous to the others that will be using that room who are expecting a specific set up.

We would like to offer refreshments at our program. Is that possible? Our contract with the hotel specifies no outside food can be brought in. If a group (such as the State Library) has its own budget, food options with the hotel can be arranged, but must be coordinated with the Conference Committee and the hotel in advance.

My speaker has published several books. Can he/she sell them at the conference? There is a place on the proposal form for information about books that have been published. Book sales all must be arranged with a representative of the Conference Committee prior to the conference. No outside sales from presenters are accommodated.

How are book signings arranged? There is a place on the proposal form for information about author signings. If your speaker is a published author, you will be contacted by a member of the Conference Committee to set up a signing.

Caring for Your Speaker

Particularly if you are hosting a speaker who is not a librarian or familiar with the NJLA Conference and/or is from out of state, please treat them graciously. As a program planner and leader in the association, you are representing NJLA and NJ library workers.

  • Confirm all details with them when they accept an invitation to speak. Upon approval from the Conference Committee, review the costs that NJLA will be reimbursing and the manner in which they will receive payment. Verify possible travel arrangements, arrival time, presentation needs, etc. Confirm details with the Conference Committee, and as appropriate, assure your speaker that these details are set.
  • Keep in touch with your speaker periodically prior to the conference date to avoid confusion (or disaster). Confirm travel arrangements. Communicate confirmation of or changes to travel arrangements with the Conference Committee as soon as possible.
  • Follow up on and confirm any presentation needs, such as photocopies or equipment. Such requests are not the responsibility of the Conference Committee, but we will assist if we can when given notice.
  • Select a moderator for the program.
  • Identify who, from your section or committee, will tend to the care and feeding of your speaker. Be sure that there is someone available to care for your speaker from arrival to departure, as necessary. Who will meet the speaker when they arrive to greet them and direct them to the registration desk for their badge? Many speakers prefer to have a quick tour of the conference site, see the room where they will be presenting, obtain a conference schedule, etc. to orient themselves when they arrive.
  • Settle the details regarding meals for (and with) your speaker. Some professional speakers are self-sufficient. Some library colleagues prefer company when they dine.  Some of your colleagues want to have the opportunity to spend more time with the speaker. Meal reimbursement estimates must be approved in advance by the Conference Committee.
  • If your speaker is an author, be sure to coordinate with the Conference Committee to ensure all details of book signings. Assign an ‘author buddy’ during any signings. (Those hosting authors will receive more information about successful book sales and signings closer to the Conference date!)
  • Follow up with your speaker soon after the conference. They can either give you receipts at the conference for you to submit for reimbursement or mail (or scan/email) them to you. The sooner they are submitted through you to the NJLA Office, the sooner they receive the check. You can find the reimbursement form here: http://njla.org/content/reimbursement-request-and-invoice-services.
  • Send a handwritten thank-you note!
  • Enjoy the experience!

Speaker/Invited Guest Reimbursement Policy

Speakers will be reimbursed for the following with prior arrangement and approval:


  • Mileage at current IRS rate, plus tolls and parking with receipts; reimbursement issued by the NJLA office with receipts and reimbursement form
  • Airfare: Flight reservations must be booked for coach seats (economy class) at least three weeks prior to date of travel, and itinerary shared with Conference Committee
  • Train: Train reservations must be booked for economy class; itinerary should be shared with Conference Committee
  • Car Service: Arrange through Conference Committee
  • Car Rental: Arrange for reimbursement with Conference Committee

Incidental: Any unconfirmed expenses MUST be approved prior to the date of Conference.

Hotel: Conference hotel or equivalent. The need for a hotel room, with date(s), must be requested from Conference Committee, who will then reserve accommodation and arrange for billing to the NJLA master account. ​Neither you nor your speaker should make a reservation at the hotel. Reimbursements will NOT be issued for hotel costs for arrangements made directly by your or the speaker. When submitting for approval, simply include how many rooms/nights you expect should be covered.

Meals: Meals are not to exceed $65.00 per day; meals at conference events must be arranged in advance and will reduce the reimbursement amount. Receipts must be submitted with the reimbursement form after conference. Costs should be approved in advance by the Conference Committee. When submitting for approval, simply include how many meals/days you expect should be covered.

Requests for ALL expenses should be submitted with the program proposals. Confirmation of costs can be communicated by email with the Conference Committee. Travel arrangements should only be made after program approval is received from the Conference Chair. Reimbursement will be made after the Conference; reimbursement form must be submitted with original receipts to the NJLA office. Once expenses are reviewed, they are forwarded to the NJLA Treasurer and a check is issued to be sent directly to the speaker.

Special requests to provide advanced reimbursement of travel costs at the Conference may be considered; requests and receipts for TRAVEL must be sent with the reimbursement form to the Conference Chair at least three weeks prior to the Conference.

NJ librarians are not reimbursed for participating as panelists or speakers (including meals, travel and accommodations). Speakers who do not officially register for the conference will receive special badges, valid only for the session or sessions in which they are speaking. Vendors are not normally reimbursed for participating as panelists or speakers.

          Approved by the NJLA Executive Board, 2008