UCR Policies and Procedures

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Policy Title:                      Procurement Card Program


Policy Number:                750-70


Responsible Officer:

Associate Vice Chancellor of Business and Financial Services and Controller

Responsible Office:

Business and Financial Services-Procurement Services

Origination Date:


Date of Revision:


Date of Last Review:



Guidance Concerning Procurement Card Program


1.    Introduction

This section outlines policy and procedures governing use of Procurement Cards as an alternate method of procurement/payment for authorized low value purchases for the University of California, Riverside (UCR). The Procurement Card provides benefit to UCR through an efficient, cost-effective method of purchasing and paying small dollar value transactions within established procurement limits. The Procurement Card program is designed to supplement other purchasing options and reduce the need for incidental/petty cash transactions. Additional benefits include: 1) prompt payment to suppliers, thereby reducing supplier inquiries to the Accounting and Procurement Services offices; 2) elimination of purchase orders and invoices; 3) reduction of personal out-of-pocket expenses, thereby reducing reimbursement requests; 4) built-in controls to restrict many inappropriate purchases and; 5) universal acceptance by suppliers.

The Procurement Card is a "Visa" purchasing card issued through US Bank, to designated University employees for the purpose of low dollar value purchases in accordance with University policies and procedures (see Section 750 of UCR's Policy and Procedures Manual). Although the card resembles and essentially functions like a personal credit card, there are significant differences. Full liability for payment of all transaction to the bank rests with the University.  The card is generated by the bank to a specified University career employee, but is issued in the name of and on behalf of the University.
The card is NOT intended:

o    To bypass procurement or accounting policies (Sections 750 & 200 of UCR Policy and Procedures Manual)

o    For entertainment purchases

o    For travel/travel related expenses

o    For personal use

The Procurement Card Program Administrator is responsible for administering the UCR program, is located in the Campus Procurement Services Department and may be reached at 951-827-3008.

2.    Cardholder Privilege

Issuance of a Procurement Card indicates an employee has been given the privilege to use the Card to conduct University financial business. This privilege is requested through the Departmental Financial Officer. Each Cardholder will be required to sign an Employee Agreement Form with New Card pick-up which indicates their agreement to use the Procurement Card in accordance with the Purchasing and Procurement Card Policies and Procedures. This privilege is conditioned upon the employee's agreement to first obtain Procurement and Procurement Card specific trainings.

A Cardholder's ability to utilize the Procurement Card in accordance with Campus policies and procedures will be routinely monitored. In order to minimize the risk or threat to the University's financial resources, it may be necessary to immediately suspend a Cardholder's Procurement Card privileges if irregularities are detected. Procurement Services Card Program Administrator, in consultation with other appropriate parties, may temporarily suspend a Cardholder's privileges based upon these irregularities and reinstate them following reasonable explanation. Cardholder privileges can be denied, suspended, or permanently revoked if it is determined that an employee is incapable of complying with, disregards, or intentionally circumvents campus policies and procedures. Any violation of local, state, or federal laws may carry the additional consequence of prosecution under the law where judicial action may result in one or more of the following: specific fines, imprisonment, litigation costs, and payment of damages.

3.    Requirements For Becoming A Cardholder

a.    Selection
Selection of Cardholders will be done at the departmental level, in consultation with Procurement Services, and must follow Low Value Purchase Authority Policies and Procedures (UC Riverside Policies and Procedures,
Section 750-39). The Cardholder must be a current UC career employee and have been delegated purchasing authority.

b.    Training
Cardholders must successfully complete required online Procurement Card Program (and Procurement Services) Training, and Assessments with a passing score of 80% or higher, available in
UC Learning Center (LMS).  Furthermore, all Cardholders must successfully complete online refresher training annually, and will receive a refresher review with Renewal card pick-up. Failure to complete refresher training will be cause for suspension or termination of card privileges.

c.    Application
Intended Cardholders must complete and submit a
Cardholder Application form

1.    Applications are processed in the order received (generally twice monthly.  Existing Cardholder and Pcard matters (Renewal and Replacement cards take precedence).  Applications are processed only after all required trainings are successfully completed.

2.    Cardholders will receive email notification for card pick-up availability and scheduling.


4.    Departmental Responsibilities


Business/Financial Manager's Responsibilities

 i.        Monitor Selection

1.    Ensure the selection of Cardholders follows Low Value Purchasing Authority delegation (UC Riverside Policies and Procedures 750-39).

2.    Selection of Cardholders must be approved by the department Business/Financial Manager.

ii.        Monitor Use

1.    Monitor card activity to ensure the Procurement Card is only being used for allowable purchases as outlined in Low Value Purchase Authority policies and procedures (UC Riverside Policies and Procedures, 750-39).

2.    Maintain a list of all Cardholders within the department.

iii.        Training

1.    Ensure that authorized Cardholders, Departmental Administrators are trained in the proper use of the card and have attended the Procurement Card Training and Refresher Training classes.

2.    The Business/Financial Manager must successfully complete required Procurement and Procurement Card Trainings and Assessments.

iv.        Cardholder Application/Employee Agreement Form

1.    Ensure that all appropriate signatures and accounting (default FAU) information are secured before submission to Procurement Services.

2.    Ensure assigned dollar limits do not exceed the designated LVPA limits.

v.         Separation of Duties

1.    Ensure that no employees, including the manager, is in a position to request or take an unauthorized action (or make an error) and permanently conceal it. Duties must be separated and transactions must be independently reviewed and reconciled by someone other than the person conducting the purchase. The Reviewer cannot be subordinate to the Cardholder.  The DCA cannot review his or her own redistributed PCT transactions.

vi.        Departmental Card Administrator

1.    Appoint a department or organization employee whose responsibility is to manage at the department level the Procurement Card program within the department.

Departmental Card Administrator (DCA) Responsibilities

i.        Training

1.    Ensure that Cardholder and the Financial Manager (designated roles) have successfully completed specific required trainings, understand established Procurement Card Program Policy and Procedures, and are current with having successfully completed Annual/Refresher Training online courses

ii.        Reconciliation

1.    Make certain that required supporting documents are on file (preferably as an eBuy electronic document) in department for five years.

2.    Ensure accurate review and reconciliation of Cardholder’ support documentation of bank charges appearing on the Procurement Card Aging Report with the Financial Transaction Detail Report.  Must be completed within thirty days after the final Transaction Detail Report.

3.    Ensure that Cardholders submit required documentation within ten (10) days of the transaction purchase date.

4.    Ensure that all items paid on the card are received and are inspected within ten (10) days of receiving.

iii.        Purchasing Policy

1.    Ensure compliance with Low Value Purchase Authority Policy and Procedures (UC Riverside Policies and Procedures, 750-39).

iv.        Accounting Issues

1.    After receipt of PAN notification ensure redistributions of card transactions from the ProCard Aging Report to the appropriate FAU are made within sixty days of posting.  All transactions must be cleared from the Procard Aging Report by the end of the fiscal year. 

2.    Ensure use of the card and redistribution of card transactions follows all current Accounting Policies and Procedures.

v.        Separation of Duties

1.    Ensure that all Procurement Card transactions are independently reviewed by someone other than the Cardholder.  Internal use of a ProCard Transaction Log

a.    If the departmental unit is too small to provide an independent confirmation of receipt other than the Cardholder, an authorized individual within the organization or from an outside unit may perform this task.

b.    The Reviewer cannot be subordinate to the Cardholder. The DCA cannot review his or her own redistributed PCT transactions.  The Cardholder cannot be the Reviewer and/or the Financial Officer for their own card.

vii.        Transaction Log

1.    Completion of a P-Card Transaction Log can be used in place of a document for a transaction where one is not provided by the supplier, provided all the details of the purchase are included.  Departments should use the eBuy ProCard selection to record Pcard transactions which allows the department to export to a Microsoft Excel file format for reporting purposes.

2.    Internal procedures can be used to establish departmental Sub-Requestor and Requestor roles, and internal approval processes.

viii.        Credit Log

1.    Department is to maintain a credit log for Cardholder’s to track, monitor and follow up with requests for credit to a satisfactory completion. All requests for credit must be resolved within sixty days of posting of the transaction. Credits must be monitored until received.

2.    Credits do not automatically clear the ProCard Aging Report (default FAU).  Both the debit and credit transactions must be moved via PCT to an FAU that the department selects in order to zero out the transaction.

ix.        Termination, Changes, Deletions and Additions

1.    Notify the Procurement Card Program Administrator immediately, in writing, of any changes, deletions or additions to the Procurement Card including changes to the default FAU, transaction limits or information displayed on the Procurement Card.

5.    Guidelines For Cardholder's Use

 .     Compliance with Existing Policy

 .        Adherence to UC Riverside Procurement policies and procedures, as well as federal and state regulations must be observed for all transactions.

1.    UCR Policy & Procedure Manual, Section 750

2.    UC Policy & Procedure Manual, Business 43

a.    Restrictions

  .        Procurement Cards may not be used for the following:

1.    Travel-related expenses

2.    Entertainment

3.    Personal Use

4.    Inventorial Equipment

5.    Cash Advances

6.    Goods in excess of departmental Low Value Purchase Authority (LVPA) limits or $2,500, whichever is less.

7.    Policy 750-39: General Restrictions and Prohibited Purchases

8.    Policy 750-63: Things Purchasing does not buy

              i.        Each Procurement Card has preset default spending limits, as determined by the campuses established Low Value Purchase Authority and as allowable by the Office of the President.  The Financial Officer responsible for the individual Cardholder’s limits and can establish limits lower, but no higher, than campus established default limits. Pre-set limits are a maximum dollar amount Per Transaction, Number of Transactions Per Day, and total maximum spend Per Billing Cycle (30 days).

1.    The pre-determined Merchant Category Codes (MCC) suppliers from which Cardholders may purchase must be consistent with Item 5.a above (Restrictions) or the Procurement Card will be declined at the point of sale.

b.    Ownership of the Procurement Card

  .        Following current Low Value Purchasing Authority, the Cardholder whose name appears on the card may make allowable/non-restricted purchases for their department. The Cardholder must identify and use the authorized method of procurement.

              i.        The Procurement Card may not be transferred to, assigned to, or used by anyone other than the Cardholder to whom it was issued.

            ii.        During the absence of a Cardholder, the department may request to coordinate the purchase with an existing organization Cardholder, request assistance from Logistic Services (formerly, Campus Store House) to purchase or requisition items using other authorized procurement methods.

c.    Delegation of Authority

  .        The Director of Procurement or the Card Program Administrator delegates limited authority to departments to permit utilization of authorized procurement methods according to UC Riverside Purchasing Policies and Procedures Section 750-63.

              i.        US Bank, the University's P-Card partner, or UCR may suspend or cancel Cardholder privileges. The Director of Procurement or Procurement Card Program Administrator may terminate Procurement Card delegation for violation of any applicable Purchasing Policies and Procedures using the Procurement Card.  The Director of Procurement may terminate Procurement privileges for violation of any applicable Purchasing Policies and Procedures.

d.    Unauthorized Use

  .        Misuse of the Procurement Card is to be reported in accordance with University policy. See Whistleblower and Whistleblower Protection Policies at websites referenced at the end of this policy.

              i.        Use of the Procurement Card or Procurement Card account number, after notice of cancellation will result in revocation of low-value delegation authority and may result in disciplinary action (see 5.d.ii 1-4 below)

            ii.        Violations of policy will be investigated and may result in the following actions:

1.    Email warning reminder /Verbal reprimand

2.    Written reprimand to Cardholder, Department Card Administrator,  and Departmental Financial Manager/Business Officer

3.    Suspension or Termination of Procurement Card privileges

4.    Termination or Criminal Prosecution

e.    Security & Protection

  .        Each department and Cardholder must ensure Procurement Cards are kept secure. In some areas it may be appropriate for the Cardholder to carry the card. If not, the cards must be stored in a secure place, such as a locked cabinet.

1.    The employee whose name appears on the Procurement Card is responsible for protecting the account number.

2.    Account numbers provided to suppliers for use on a standing or blanket basis are approved case-by-case and will be at the department’s discretion. Cards are typically used for single transactions only.

f.     Lost or Stolen Cards

  .        If a Procurement Card is lost or stolen, a Cardholder or DCA must notify US Bank immediately. US Bank's 24-hour phone number is (800) 344-5696. Notification must also be made to their department head (or designee) and to the Procurement Card Program Administrator.

g.    Disputed Transactions, Returns and Credits

  .        It is the Procurement Cardholder's/DCA's responsibility to follow up on any erroneous charges, returns, or adjustments and to ensure proper credit is given.

              i.        Disputed Transactions: US Bank must be notified within 60 days of the last day of the billing-cycle during which a transaction is charged if that transaction is or will be disputed. A Dispute Form may be downloaded from Purchasing's website. The last day of the billing-cycle for UCR is the 25th of each month.

            ii.        Returns and Credits: If a resolution cannot be reached between the supplier and Cardholder, contact US Bank Customer Service at (800) 344-5696 or the Procurement Card Program Administrator at (951) 827-3008. Disputes are to be resolved completely within sixty days of the transaction posting.

6.    Source Documentation

 .     Source documentation (receipts) from the supplier must provide sufficient information to permit validation by an individual other than the Cardholder. This documentation can be itemized receipts or itemized packing slips.

a.    Cardholders must submit documents to their respective DCA as soon as possible following purchase.

b.    Documentation/Receipts must be reviewed by each department to verify that all transactions follow low value purchasing authority and Procurement Card policy and procedures. Persons performing the department's reconciliation function have specific review responsibilities including: reviewing and verifying receipts, invoices, or packing slips against financial journal entries.

Purchases Made in Person - To document purchases made in person, a credit card slip (customer copy) or a cash register tape, signed by the Cardholder normally is acceptable. If the merchandise purchased is not itemized on the signed document, the purchaser must request and obtain a cash register tape or a manual itemized receipt from the supplier. This must be done at the time of purchase. Additional documentation must be provided if the cash register tape or other receipt provided by the supplier does not provide sufficient detail to permit verification by a person other than the Cardholder of the items purchased.

 .        Mail, Telephone or Internet Orders - To document purchases made via mail, telephone or Internet, departments must obtain a copy of the suppliers’ order confirmation/acknowledgement, packing slip or supplier invoice. These documents must contain sufficient information to permit proper reconciliation of charges.

When using the Procurement Card for Internet purchases, Cardholders must be sure a secure site is used.

7.    Auditing

 .     Purchasing shall conduct random audits to ensure appropriate policies and procedures are being followed, including: appropriateness of purchase, separation of duties, and source documentation records.

a.    It is the responsibility of Audit and Advisory Services to perform sample audits of departmental records to ensure that appropriate policies and procedures are being followed.

8.    Use and Sales Tax Guidelines

 .     Use Tax

Use tax on Procurement Card transactions from out-of-state suppliers will be automatically calculated and added to the amount of the sale via UCRFS. Some out-of-state suppliers will collect such tax. DCA's must ensure that they notify Accounts Payable (ucrAP@ucr.edu) of all out-of-state suppliers who have already collected tax on a receipt. When notified, the appropriate Procurement Services buyer will add these suppliers to a table, which will override the use tax accrual in the future.

Ensure all copies of out-of-state receipts, where sales tax has been collected, are sent to Accounting in order to correct the duplicate tax.

Sales Tax

Is due and payable at time of purchase of tangible goods. The State of California requires payment of state sales tax on all purchases, except those which are tax-exempt. The following types of services are generally not taxable: Labor, advertisements, online downloads, and freight.

At times, a transaction may require a combination of goods and services that are both taxable and nontaxable. In such cases, obtain a specific breakdown of the supplier’s charges in each category and the appropriate tax.

9.    Contacts

 .     For further information, contact the U.C. Riverside Procurement Card Program Administrator at (951) 827-3008.

10. References and Related Policy

·         UCR Procurement Card Guidebook  or email Dana Allen or Gae Purvis.

·         UCR Policy and Procedure Manual, Section 750, Purchasing & Management of Supplies and Equipment

·         UC Business & Finance Bulletin Bus-43, Business and Finance, Procurement Services.

·         UCR Policy and Procedure Manual, Section 200 - Business and Financial Services, Accounting & Financial Management

·         UC Policy and Procedure Manual, Whistleblower Policy

·         UC Policy and Procedure Manual, Whistleblower Protection Policy

·         UCR Learning System – On line training