PURCHASING CARD (P-CARD) PROCEDURES
The Purchasing Card (P-Card) system provides a convenient way to purchase University business-related items, while containing costs associated with the procurement of these items.
Most P-Card approvals and control features occur after the purchase has taken place. Examples of after-the-purchase controls include:
- Support Documents for each P-Card transaction. Transactions reported on monthly statements provide very little information about purchases. The name of the vendor is listed, but what was purchased is not. Support documents such as itemized receipts, however, provide detailed information about the purchase, including what was bought, how many items were purchased, and the total amount charged.
- Reconciling P-Card Statements. Reconciling itemized receipts to transactions reported on monthly statements allows the Cardholder to make sure that all purchases have been reported, that any credits have been received, and provides the opportunity to resolve any discrepancies.
- Administrative Review. Supervisors indicate approval of purchases by reviewing and then signing and dating reconciled Cardholder statements. It is the supervisor’s responsibility to address Cardholders about questionable transactions.
- US Bank Controls. Certain merchant codes are blocked so that P-Card transactions are automatically declined. US Bank provides access to all transaction data generated by Cardholders to the P-Card Program Administrators. Administrators review declined transaction reports for review on a weekly basis. Administrators also review transactions on a regular basis for unusual or irregular transactions.
Purchasing Card (P-Card): A Visa credit card issued to a Cardholder for the purpose of making authorized purchases on the University’s behalf. P-Cards have a set three year life, but they can be renewed (reissued). The University pays the monthly US Bank statement and charges the assigned index number for P-card purchases.
Cardholder: The individual whose name appears on the P-Card and who is responsible for all charges made with the card. Cardholders are required to complete P-Card training when applying for their first P-Card and every three years after. P-Card training is available online.
Cardholders must review the online training Purchasing Card (P-Card) Training for Cardholders power point presentation and turn in a P-Card Cardholder Training and Agreement Form (available at the completion of the online training) to the P-Card Administrators as proof of training.
Delegated Card User: This is a person who has been selected by a Cardholder to use the Cardholder’s P-Card. Cardholders are responsible and accountable for all charges whether made by themselves or by their delegated users. A completed Delegated Card User Form must be on file in the department listing each delegated card user by P-Card.
Delegated Users can view the online training or the previously trained Cardholder/Department may provide the training to the Delegated User.
P-Card Transaction Statements: Transactions occur when Cardholders use their P-Card to make authorized purchases. Transactions are also known as “credit card charges” or “charges.” They are reported on a monthly basis to the Cardholder in two separate statements.
- Off-Campus Transactions: Reported monthly on the US Bank Statement.
US Bank Statement: A statement sent directly to the Cardholder by US Bank listing all off-campus transactions charged to the Cardholder’s P-Card through the end of a monthly billing cycle. This statement will only be sent if off-campus purchases have occurred during the previous month.
- On-Campus Transactions: Reported monthly on the OCC Monthly Statement.
OCC Monthly Statement: A statement sent directly by e-mail to the designated Card Manager listing all on-campus transactions. Features of the monthly statement include the OCC number, the index number, the Cardholder name, the amount of each transaction, and the date, time and location where the card was used. This statement will only be sent if on-campus purchases have occurred during the previous month.
On Campus Charges: Each P-Card is issued with a unique on campus charge (OCC) number. This number allows Cardholders to use their P-Cards to make purchases from on campus vendors, such as the Bookstore, without the University incurring transaction fees from US Bank. On campus vendors are required to view the P-Card when purchases are being made in person, so be sure to take your card with you. (Note: There may be USU departments that do not use OCC numbers, but they do accept P-Cards for purchases. Transactions involving these departments will be reported on the US Bank statement rather than the OCC Monthly Statement.)
Reconciliation may be delegated (see P-Card Reconciler), but the Cardholder acknowledges responsibility for all transactions by reviewing, signing, and dating the monthly statements.
b) Investigate and resolve any discrepancies, you only have 60 days from the transaction date to dispute a charge with US Bank,
c) Attach the Support Documents to the statements,
d) Sign and Date the statements; signing indicates charges are correct, authorized by the cardholder, compliant with University Policies, and consistent with departmental budget and grant guidelines,
e) Have the reconciled statements reviewed by their Supervisor, and
f) See Record Retention Period for how long statements and support documents have to be kept.
Support Documents: These are documents that “support” and provide information about P-Card transactions. Since monthly statements provide very little information about purchases, support documentation is required. Examples of support documents include itemized receipts, itemized invoices, packing slips, and the use of the Additional Information Form.
All transactions are required to have support documentation that provides the following information about the purchase:
a) Description of what was purchased,
b) Price per item and quantities of items purchased,
c) The total amount charged,
d) The date,
e) The name of the company.
f) Additional support documentation could be a Meals and Entertainment Form, or a Memberships and Dues.
Record Retention Period: Record Retention for P-Card statements and related support documents depends on the funding source for the P-Card's index. If your P-Card is paid by an index that is funded by an awarded contract or grant (sponsored program), please contact your Sponsored Program Accountant in the Controller’s Office to find out how long you have to retain your P-Card statements and related support documents. For all other indexes, P-Card statements and related support documents should be retained for a minimum of 5 years from the statement date. Statements and support documents should be shredded for disposal.
Missing Receipt Form: If support documentation is not available, the Missing Receipt Form may be used in substitution. (Note: Use of the form more than twice will be noted on the cardholder's review report. This will require a discussion during the closing conference.)
Administrative Reviewer: This is the Cardholder’s supervisor. Your supervisor may delegate the review to a delegated administrative reviewer. That person would then complete the administrative review of the Cardholder’s statements. It is the responsibility of the supervisor to address Cardholders about questionable transactions. After the review is completed and any questions have been answered, your supervisor is required to sign and date the statements indicating approval of the reported transactions.
Delegated Administrative Reviewer: A Cardholder’s supervisor may delegate the process of administrative review to another person who does not report directly to the card holder. That person cannot report directly to the Cardholder. It is the responsibility of the delegated reviewer to report any concerns about transactions to the Cardholder’s supervisor.
Administrative Review: The Cardholder’ supervisor or designee reviews the reconciled statements and support documents. Only the supervisor may contact a cardholder about questionable transactions, and sign and date the reviewed statements indicating approval of all reported transactions.
Card Manager: Departments may choose an employee to act as Card Manager. Often times this employee is the business manager. If departments do not select a Card Manager, then the Cardholder assumes Card Manager Responsibilities.
- Card Managers are responsible to make sure that P-card transactions have been charged to the assigned default index number and are posted to the correct expense categories in Banner.
- These employee(s) are responsible to relay information back and forth between departments and P-Card Program Administrators. For example, Card Managers notify P-Card Program Administrators of any assigned index number changes or closures for P-Cards.
- Department Card Managers must notify P-Card Program Administrators if an employee has transferred to another department or has ended employment with the University.
P-Card Program Administrators: The Accounts Payable employee who administer the P-Card program for the University and acts as the main contact between the University and US Bank. P-Card Program Administrators are authorized to sample, test, and question P-Card transactions to verify that they are appropriate and have support documents.
Cardholder Training Session:Cardholders are required to complete P-Card training when applying for their first P-Card and every three years after. P-Card training is available online.
Cardholders must review the online training Purchasing Card (P-Card) Training for Cardholders and Delegated Users and turn in a P-Card Cardholder and Delegated User Training and Agreement Form (available at the completion of the online training) to the P-Card Administrators as proof of training.
Individual Transactions: The highest dollar amount allowed per single off campus P-Card transaction is $5,000. There is no limit on campus P-card Transactions. Departments may establish lower limits for a given P-Card. (Note: Splitting orders to remain under the single transaction limit is not allowed.)
Monthly Transactions: The highest dollar amount for all transactions made during a monthly billing cycle per P-Card cannot exceed $15,000. Upon special request the limit can be increased to $20,000. Departments may set lower limits.
Assigned Default Index Number: The index number assigned to a P-Card by the department’s Card Manager or Cardholder. Only one index can be assigned to a P-Card. All charges made by that P-Card are then posted to the assigned index by “default.” However, charges can be reallocated from the default index to other indexes within Banner. If the "default" index needs to be changed please contact the P-card Program Administrator for USU at 797-1037 or email: email@example.com; for USU Eastern at 613-5373 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Reallocation Period: Each week, 4 working days are available when P-Card charges can be reallocated from the assigned default index to other indexes within Banner. P-Card charges are initially loaded to a temporary holding file where they reside until they are posted into Banner Finance. When charges are in the temporary file, they can be reallocated to other indexes. It is also possible to change account codes during the reallocation period. In particular, it’s important to make sure that capital equipment that is purchased using a P-Card have the correct equipment account codes before they are entered into Banner. Equipment Account codes can be viewed at http://www.usu.edu/controller/equipinv/equippcard.cfm If this period of time is missed, reallocation can be done via journal entry. Training for the reallocation process is available online at http://www.usu.edu/controller/finsyst/reallocation.cfm
Sales Tax Exemption: Most purchases made within the State of Utah are tax-exempt., lodging is an example of a purchase that currently is not exempt unless the amount is for a $1,000 or more or a contract has been negotiated with the vendor. The University’s Sales Tax Exemption number is imprinted on each P-Card. Every Cardholder and Delegated User has a fiduciary responsibility to not pay State of Utah Sales Tax for an item when it isn't necessary. Please let vendors know that your card is tax-exempt. Although there are no penalties assessed for having Utah sales tax charged to your purchase, if the amount is material to your department you may want to pursue a sales tax credit from the vendor.
P-Card Transaction Review: Card usage is reviewed by US Bank, Internal Audit Services, and P-Card Program Administrators. Any misuse of the card may result in card cancellation, disciplinary action, termination of employment and legal action by the University.
University Business-Related Expenses: These are expenditures (purchases) made that support the mission of the University. All P-Card transactions must qualify as University business-related expenses. If a P-Card transaction could be viewed as a personal purchase to someone not directly involved, a brief explanation should be written on the itemized receipt or the Additional Information Form should be completed and attached to the P-Card statement.
P-Card Renewals: P-cards automatically renew every three years as long as training is current.
2.0 P-Card Procedures
- Training must be completed to obtain a P-card. Review the online training Purchasing Card (P-Card) Training for Cardholders and Delegated Users. Additional cards for other accounts/indexes may be issued if training is current (within the past three years).
- Complete and submit a P-Card Application Form to P-Card Administrator UMC 2400. (Plan on 10 business days after you submit your application before your card is available.)
- You will be notified by the P-Card Administrators if you need to complete training.
- If you need training, you will review the online training Purchasing Card (P-Card) Training for Cardholders and Delegated Users and turn in a P-Card Cardholder and Delegated User Training and Agreement Form (available at the completion of the online training) to the P-Card Administrators as proof of training.
- Be familiar with allowable transactions;
- Understand what you CAN and CANNOT buy with your P-Card.
- Understand how University Policies impact your P-Card use.
- Understand that all card use is subject to review and audit.
- Retain itemized receipts/invoices for EVERY purchase.
- Ensure that Utah Sales Tax is not charged on purchases made within the State of Utah.
- Reconcile, sign and date your statements monthly (P-Card Statement Reconciliation).
- Have an Administrative Review completed of your monthly reconciled statements.
- Understand the requirements for Delegated Users if you choose to have them.
- Accept responsibility for monitoring the proper use of the P-card by any Delegated Users.
- Agree to notify P-Card Administrators if you change departments or end employment with the University.
If you need to report a change on an existing P-Card, please e-mail the P-Card Program Administrators to inform them of the change(s). Please include ONLY the last 4 digits of the card’s account number. Changes can include:
- New Index
- Address Change
- Name Change
- Single Transaction Limit
- Monthly Spending Limit
- Card Closure
Copies of the e-mail must be cc’d to the Department Head, the Card Manager and the Card Holder to indicate authorization before changes will be made by the Program Administrators.
P-Card Program Administrator e-mail addresses:
All P-Cards are the property of Utah State University. If a card is lost or stolen, please do the following:
US Bank will block additional use of a lost/stolen card upon telephone notification. Prompt action in these circumstances can reduce the University’s liability for fraudulent charges.
- Office and lab supplies
- Office, Lab & Classroom Supplies
- Conference Registrations (i.e., Seminars & Workshops)
- Publications and Periodicals (University business related)
- University Inn
- University related Meals and Entertainment (in accordance with Policy 516)
- Employee Gifts and Awards (in accordance with Policy 505)
- Tools and Equipment
- A purchase where a vendor requests you to fill out a form which is kept on file (i.e. Amazon.com)
- Printing – both on campus and off campus
- Off campus – if your print job contains a University logo, please contact Public Relations @7-1351 for approval - Licensing Policy
- Monthly recurring charges for non-contractual obligations are only authorized if the corresponding receipts/invoices are included in the documentation.
- Gift Cards (follow the Gift Card/Certificate Procedures), USU Dining Cards (requires a Meals and Entertainment form)
- NO Personal Purchases
- NO Employee Travel Expenses (exception – Conference Registrations)
- NO Alcohol (refer to Policy 516)
- NO Personal Cell Phones or personal cell phone services
- NO Gasoline and Diesel Fuel
- NO paying someone for their personal services including independent contractors, performers, honorariums, doctors, attorneys, accountants, etc.
- NO Construction and Remodeling
- NO Contractual Obligations, this includes lease purchases
- NO Research Animals
- NO Radioactive Chemicals or Isotopes
- Splitting orders to remain under the single transaction limit is not allowed
If you have a question regarding whether a P-Card can be used for a type of purchase, please contact a P-Card Program Administrator for assistance 797-1037 (USU) or (435) 613-5373 (USU Eastern).
. Violation Types
- Personal Purchase
- Splitting of Transaction
- Purchase of Prohibited Items
- Biweekly statement not reconciled and submitted by Cardholder
- Biweekly statement not reviewed and submitted by Approver
- No Itemized Receipt or Missing Receipt Form
- 3rd or more use of Missing Receipt Form*
- Policy or Procedure Violation
The P-card Program is administered in accordance with policies and procedures established by the Controller's Office and Purchasing Services. The Controller's Office and Purchasing Services are authorized to suspend or cancel P-card privileges for cardholders considered to be in violation of university and P-card policies and procedures.
*A Missing Receipt Form may be used twice during a fiscal year. Use of the form three or more times will result in a discussion during the closing conference.
2.8 Review Process
All P-card transactions are subject to a formal review process. The review will be conducted by Internal Audit Services. The review process will generally follow the outline scheduled below.
- An opening conference is set up with the Dean/VP
- Establish the review and what to expect
- Cardholders/Business Managers are contacted to schedule appointments to review statements and receipts
- After the review is completed, reports regarding the findings are generated for each individual
- Distributed to Cardholders and Department Heads
- A consolidated report of all individual reports is generated
- Reviewed with Dean/VP
- Distributed to the President, Board of Trustees' Audit Committee, and the Dean/VP
- Closing Conference is scheduled
- P-cardholders must attend to review findings and recommendations
- In those instances where the reviewer considers the findings egregious, an individual conference will be scheduled with the p-cardholder, Department Head, and the Controller
- If the cardholder does not attend the card will be suspended for use
3.0 Additional P-Card Information
3.1 Shipping and Receiving
Cardholders are encouraged to receive their own shipments. Regardless of who receives the shipment, the Cardholder remains responsible for obtaining all documentation (packing slips, mail order form copies, etc.) related to the purchase and verifying that the documentation complies with the requirements for support documents.
Address for Central Receiving:
|Utah State University
1295 East 700 North
9200 Old Main Hill
Logan, Utah 84322-9200
|Utah State University
530 North 300 East
Price, UT 84501
|Utah State University
San Juan Campus
639 West 100 South
Blanding, UT 84511
3.2 Merchandise Returns and Exchanges
The Cardholder is responsible for contacting the vendor when merchandise is not acceptable (incorrect, damaged, defective, etc.). Be aware that some vendors may assess a restocking fee.
- Merchandise Returned for Credit: If merchandise is returned for credit, the Cardholder is responsible to obtain a credit receipt from the vendor and keep it as support documentation for that purchase. Receiving cash or checks to resolve a credit is prohibited.
- Merchandise Exchanged: If merchandise is exchanged, the Cardholder will return the merchandise to the vendor and keep documentation supporting the transaction
If the Cardholder disputes a charge, document the dispute and the final resolution so that it can be retained with the Statement on which the disputed charge appears.
- Vendor Resolution: Whenever possible, the Cardholder should try to resolve disputed charges directly with the vendor. Most vendors prefer to resolve the dispute themselves and are willing to provide help. If the vendor agrees that an error has been made, the vendor will process a credit to the P-Card account. Make sure that credits due are posted to the P-Card account.
- US Bank Resolution: If the dispute cannot be resolved with the vendor, the Cardholder should contact US Bank at 1-800-344-5696 to complete and turn in a Cardholder Dispute Form. You only have 60 days from the transaction date to dispute a charge with US Bank. The next statement will be reduced by the amount of the disputed item until the transaction in question is resolved.
4.0 P-Card Forms
P-Card Application Form (pdf)
A completed P-Card Application Form is required when requesting a new P-Card.
Cardholder and Delegated User Training and Agreement Form (pdf)
The completed Cardholder and Delegated User Training and Agreement Form is required for every card issued. The form can be printed at the end of the online pcard training. It must be turned into the Controllers Office as soon after the card has been picked up.
Delegated Card User Form (pdf)
This form is required if a Cardholder delegates the use of his/her card to someone else. This form is to be kept on file in the department.
Missing Receipt Form (pdf)
The Missing Receipt Form is to be used only in exceptional circumstances when the Cardholder cannot obtain a replacement receipt from the vendor. Using the form more than twice in any fiscal year may result in violation points.
Meals and Entertainment Form (pdf)
A required form when a P-Card is used to purchase meals and entertainment related to the conduct of University business. Please refer to Policy 516 “Meals and Entertainment” for additional information.
Memberships and Dues Form(pdf)
Complete and retain on file the required membership and dues form when a P-card is used to pay for memberships or dues. Please refer to Policy 522- Memberships and Dues for additional information
P-Card Transaction Form (pdf)
The use of the Transaction Form is optional. It can assist Cardholders and Card Managers track P-Card transactions and assist in reconciling both the US Bank and University monthly statements.
Capital Equipment Record(pdf)
The use of the Pcard Purchase/On Campus Expenditure form is required any time equipment or computers are purchased. Please refer to Capital Equipment Record for additional information.
Additional Information Form (pdf)
The Additional Information Form is not required, but it may be used as support documentation for P-Card transactions that could be viewed as personal purchases, but were made for official University business purposes. (This form may not be used for Meals or Entertainment – see Policy 516.)
5.0 Related University Policies
Review these policies to ensure compliance when using P-Cards to pay for employee gifts and awards (including flowers and plants), and meals and entertainment.
- ANNUAL REPORTS
- BOND DISCLOSURE
- PURCHASING CARD TRAVEL CARD
- POLICIES & PROCEDURES
- ACCOUNTING & FINANCIAL REPORTING
- ACCOUNTS PAYABLE / TRAVEL
- CASHIERS/TREASURY SERVICES
- EQUIPMENT MANAGEMENT
- FINANCE SYSTEMS
- SPONSORED PROGRAMS ACCOUNTING