PROCEDURE PC2009 USING THE PENN STATE PURCHASING CARD
Systems and Procedures
A Division of The Corporate Controller's Office
IN
Last Revision: 04/13/2015

Procedure PC2009 Use of the Penn State Purchasing Card

Process Owner: Office of Central Procurement

Policy Steward facilitating procedure: Chief Procurement Officer

Table of Contents:


GENERAL

The Office of Central Procurement has arranged with PNC Bank to provide pre-approved individual employees of the University with a Purchasing Card to be used to acquire goods & services and/or travel-related expenditures, including group meeting and meal expenses, necessary for the ongoing operation of the University.

The Purchasing Card will have two separate spending limits. One will be for Goods & Services and the other for Travel and Group Meals/Meetings. Cardholders may be authorized for either or both limits, depending on the needs of the business area.

The Purchasing Card, issued to approved employees, will be presented (with presented defined as: physically handing the vendor the purchasing card, or the providing of the purchasing card number for phone, fax, mail, on-line or other purchases) to the vendor providing the material or service. A daily electronic notice will be sent by the purchasing card-issuing bank to Penn State.

Transactions are transmitted and loaded into SAP Concur for settlement by the Cardholder or authorized delegate. The expense report in SAP Concur will follow an appropriate approval path, including the budget assistant for goods and services transactions and the budget administrator and FO for travel transactions to assure compliance with policy and procedure. If amounts are due to the cardholder, a direct deposit will be made to the cardholder's bank account. If a net amount is due for all travel settled in SAP Concur, the net amount will be deducted from the cardholder's paycheck at the end of the month.

Payments to the purchasing card issuing bank will be made weekly by Accounting Operations based upon the charges and credits transmitted during the payment period.

The Cardholder must personally verify that all charges presented on the settlement report are legitimate University expenses. The Cardholder must immediately notify the FO if there are any unauthorized charges. A Directory of Financial Officers is available on the Corporate Controller's website. Any charge made by the Cardholder (or someone authorized by the Cardholder) not supported by an acceptable receipt becomes the personal liability of the Cardholder.

Sanctions may be imposed for misuse of the purchasing card. See University Policy BS14 Penn State Purchasing Card.

This procedure outlines the steps required to issue a Purchasing Card, make purchases, process returns and credits, handle disputes, maintain control of the purchasing card, assure the validity of the purchases, and maintain receipts/records to meet audit requirements.

DEFINITIONS

PROCEDURE

APPLICATION FOR ISSUING A PURCHASING CARD

An employee must first successfully complete the Purchasing Card On-Line Tutorial and Cardholder Certification Quiz, which is accessible through the PSU Purchasing Card website. The Cardholder will have the option to review the tutorial and take the certification quiz for Goods & Services only, Travel and Group Meals/Meetings only, or both Goods & Services and Travel and Group Meals/Meetings. Upon successfully passing the Cardholder Certification Quiz, notification will be sent to the appropriate individuals that a prospective Cardholder has completed the required training for the specified limits.

The employee will also be required to electronically agree to the Purchasing Card Cardholder Agreement during the certification process, identifying that they agree to the terms and responsibilities of using the purchasing card, and the related sanctions that accompany misuse.

A Purchasing Card Services Request form is available on-line in SAP Concur for completion, approval, and submission to the budget administrator or budget executive and FO for approval. The Purchasing Card Services Request application will authorize an employee to obtain a Penn State Purchasing Card for making purchases for a business area account up to a specified limit per transaction. Other limitations on usage, such as types of purchases a Cardholder is authorized to make, may be imposed or revised as deemed necessary by the business area. The Purchasing Card Services form may not be submitted until the prospective Cardholder has completed the on-line training and has electronically signed the Purchasing Card Cardholder Agreement.

ISSUING THE PURCHASING CARD

Once a budget administrator or budget executive and FO approve the electronic application, it is forwarded to the Purchasing Card Coordinator, in the Office of Corporate Controller, who approves the form.

The issuing bank receives the required information electronically and issues a purchasing card to the employee. The issuing bank will mail the purchasing card to the Purchasing Card Coordinator who will then mail the purchasing card directly to the Cardholder. The Cardholder then must activate the purchasing card per the instructions provided.

CONTROLLING THE PURCHASING CARD

The Cardholder is responsible for the physical security of the purchasing card to prevent its misuse and the abuse of its privileges. The Cardholder, acknowledging the rights and responsibilities that accompany the Purchasing Card, has agreed to provide receipts (see Acceptable Receipts) for all acquisitions made with the purchasing card, as required. All purchases must be for official University uses and must comply with University Policy BS14 Penn State Purchasing Card and this procedure. All travel purchases must also comply with Policy TR02 Penn State Travel.

A Cardholder may allow another University employee to use their purchasing card, although this is discouraged. If the Cardholder does allow another person to use their purchasing card, the Cardholder is responsible for all the charges made by others whom the Cardholder has authorized to use the purchasing card. Transactions made by others will be posted to SAP Concur as belonging to the Cardholder, who will be required to settle the charges, even though for another employee. Any misuse of the purchasing card may result in sanctions being placed against the Cardholder and/or the user (Policy BS14 Penn State Purchasing Card.

Approvers are not permitted to make purchases with a Cardholder's purchasing card and then to approve the expense report, even with the Cardholder's review and authorization. These transactions must be approved by another authorized approver in the business area or the FO. In addition, approvers who are also cardholders or delegates are not permitted to approve their own expense reports.

MAKING PURCHASES

The Cardholder may use the purchasing card for legitimate University purchases from vendors in accordance with Policy BS09 Initiating Purchases from Vendors Outside the University and Purchasing Card Spending Limits. The Cardholder should inform the vendor that the purchase is for the University in case there are special discounts offered or arranged for University purchases. The Cardholder will present the purchasing card to the vendor for recording the appropriate and necessary information for the purchase. The catalog or order form must be retained by the Cardholder until the material is received to assure that ordered material is received at the business area.

The vendor should provide a receipt for the material (or a priced acknowledgment or priced packing list), along with the supplies or material.

If using the Purchasing Card for online purchases, assure that the online site is secure and encrypted. Typically, this can be confirmed by ensuring the browser shows a symbol of a locked padlock to the left of the website address or that the web address has "https" in the address instead of the unsecured "http". Unless there is a business requirement to do so, do not opt to store credit card data with the online site. The order confirmation or other online "receipt" should be printed to be used as a receipt if a priced packing slip is not received.

NOTES:

In instances where a signed agreement is required by the vendor, the agreement shall be reviewed and signed by the Office of Central Procurement prior to the transaction. Purchasing Card payment related contracts should be emailed to psucontracts@psu.edu with the subject line of "Contract/Agreement Review for Purchasing Card Transaction" for review and signature by Procurement Services. Agreements shall only be signed by those parties stated in FNG02 Limited Delegation of Contract Approvals, with authority to approve and sign contractual documents

SPECIFIC RESTRICTIONS

The Purchasing Card may be used to acquire goods & services and to pay for travel and group meals/meeting, based on limits approved by the business area in accordance with University policies and specifically the Payment Decision Matrix. Items specifically EXCLUDED from being obtained with the Purchasing Card are explained in detail in Policy BS14 Penn State Purchasing Card - Specific Restrictions of Goods and Services.

Before acquiring items with the Purchasing Card, it is recommended to check the availability of such items within the Shop OnLion system. If the item is available through Shop OnLion, the transaction should be completed within the Shop OnLion system.

Important Note: All University Policies apply to purchases obtained with the Purchasing Card.

PURCHASING CARD SPENDING LIMITS:

The following maximum limits have been set for the Purchasing Card. Business Areas should authorize specific limits based on the anticipated purchasing patterns of the Cardholder, the budgetary amount available for purchases, and the potential for losses due to misuse or unauthorized use by third parties. Cardholders who are not authorized to purchase goods & services should have those limits set to zero; those not authorized for travel and group meals/meetings should have those limits set to zero.

Goods & Services Spending Limits

Travel and Group Meals/Meetings Spending Limits

Please note that it is misuse of the Purchasing Card to split transactions to circumvent the limits.

Academic and Business Areas may set lower transaction, daily, and cycle limits. The budget administrator and FO will approve the limits for an individual's purchasing card. The FO can be contacted regarding the limits set on your purchasing card.

ACCEPTABLE RECEIPTS:

Goods & Services Acceptable Receipts

The cardholder must settle all goods and services as categorized by Merchant Category Code (MCC) expenditures in SAP Concur no later than 30 days after the transaction. Receipts are required for all goods and services transactions. Acceptable receipts include a detailed cash register receipt, a printed acknowledgment from a website (including email confirmation), a priced packing slip or other documentation which provides information about the item or service purchased, the vendor, date of transaction, and amount of the purchase. Detailed receipts must be obtained when possible. If detailed receipts cannot be obtained, the Cardholder must document the reason why they could not be obtained. Completely hand-written receipts are not acceptable. It is not necessary for cardholders to sign receipts related to purchasing card transactions processed through SAP Concur.

If the price is not indicated on the documentation, but is noted by the Cardholder, the documentation must be reviewed and approved by the FO prior to being submitted on an expense report in SAP Concur. The FO will indicate approval by signing the supporting documentation. Acceptance of supporting receipts and/or documentation is at the discretion of the FO.

Receipts for credits should be obtained; however, if the vendor did not or will not provide a credit receipt, the credit transaction (without receipt) should be referenced to the original charge and documentation and any differences in amount must be clearly explained.

Receipts must be uploaded into the SAP Concur system. Cardholders should retain original receipts until the related SAP Concur report has been approved and paid. Originals do not need to be retained after that point and should be shredded for privacy and confidentiality reasons.

If a receipt or other documentation is lost or unavailable, the Cardholder must document the charge on the Substantiation for Lost or Unobtainable Receipts Form indicating the details of the purchase, the business purpose and the amount of purchase. This support form must be approved as follows:

In cases of missing or lost receipts where the transaction will be charged to a federal grant or contract, the Principal Investigator (if other than the Cardholder) is also required to approve the Substantiation for Lost or Unobtainable Receipts Form.

Travel and Group Meals/Meetings Acceptable Receipts

The Cardholder must settle all travel as categorized by Merchant Category Code (MCC) expenditures (including those on the purchasing card) in SAP Concur no later than 60 days after the end of the trip (30 days if the travel is charged to a restricted fund and is completed in the last month of the sponsored agreement). Receipts are required for all purchasing card transactions, except individual meals charged to the purchasing card when per diem is being claimed. Receipts must be uploaded, along with any non-purchasing card receipts, as part of the SAP Concur settlement process. It is not necessary for cardholders to sign receipts related to purchasing card transactions processed through SAP Concur.

Group meals must be supported by itemized receipts. All group meals, whether conducted during travel or while on campus, must be entered into the SAP Concur system. The information required to support the group meal (location, attendees, business purpose) must be entered into SAP Concur for review and approved by the budget administrator and FO. The Group Meal and Meeting Support Form is available for use. The same holds true for group meeting expenditures.

The amount paid including occupancy taxes, fees, and gratuities must be included on the receipt, invoice, or other documentation.

For purchases made on-line, such as airline reservations, a confirmation, itinerary, or e-mail confirming the purchase, including pricing (cost) is acceptable to be uploaded.

Receipts are required to be reimbursed for actual costs for miscellaneous expenses, such as cab fare, parking fees, or subway tokens. If receipts are not obtained, these expenses will become part of the miscellaneous per diem available to the traveler. Note: the purchasing card can be used for these expenses, but in some cases, depending on the vendor used, the transactions may be categorized as goods & services.

Cardholders with Travel and Group Meal/Meeting spending limits should be familiar with the Policy TR02 Penn State Travel.

Receipts for credits should be obtained; however, if the vendor did not or will not provide a credit receipt, the credit transaction (without receipt) should be referenced to the original charge and documentation and any differences in amount must be clearly explained.

Receipts must be uploaded into the SAP Concur system. Cardholders should retain original receipts until the related SAP Concur report has been approved and paid. Originals do not need to be retained after that point and should be shredded for privacy and confidentiality reasons.

If a receipt or other documentation is lost or unavailable, the Cardholder must document the charge on the Substantiation for Lost or Unobtainable Receipts Form indicating the details of the purchase, the business purpose and the amount of purchase. This support form must be approved as follows:

In cases of missing or lost receipts where the transaction will be charged to a federal grant or contract, the Principal Investigator (if other than the Cardholder) is also required to approve the substantiation form.

Not providing substantiation (documentation such as a receipt or the Substantiation for Lost or Unobtainable Receipts Form) of a purchasing card transaction is a misuse of the purchasing card.

SALES TAX

All purchases for the University are exempt from the Pennsylvania State Sales Tax, as well as several other states. The Purchasing Card has notification of this fact printed on the purchasing card and the vendor should not charge PA sales taxes on purchases made with the purchasing card. The Cardholder must assure that PA sales tax is not charged to the University.

NOTE: The University is NOT exempt from local and hotel occupancy taxes which are generally charged for lodging.

Whenever possible, employees should identify and highlight the University's tax-exempt status when communicating with vendors to avoid being incorrectly charged taxes. The University's tax-exempt number is printed on the face of the Purchasing Card. Tax exempt certificates should be shared with vendors as needed.

REBATES AND INCENTIVES

Except for travel-related reward programs, rebates or purchase incentives that are obtained as a result of a purchase made with the Purchasing Card belong to the University. This also includes any tangible, non-cash items offered and received. Non-cash items with a value of $25 or more must be reported to the FO so proper recording of the item can be made. Rebates should be credited to the account to which the original transaction that generated the rebate was charged. Purchase incentives, coupons, or certificates for discounts on future purchases must be turned in to the business area for future use by the University.

If the full credit card number is printed on the receipt or other supporting documentation, either the Cardholder or delegate should conceal all but the last four digits of the card number to prevent potential compromise of the Purchasing Card. If Purchasing Card transactions are not settled in an appropriate time-frame, the Business Area Financial Officer will follow-up with the Cardholder to determine why charges are not settled. If appropriate, the Business Area Financial Officer may settle the charge as a non-reimbursable transaction, which would result in a deduction from the Cardholder's paycheck in the amount of the transaction. The Business Area Financial Officer may also proceed to take action based on misuse of the Purchasing Card per University Policy BS14 Penn State Purchasing Card.

RECONCILING PURCHASING CARD TRANSACTIONS

Cardholder or Cardholder's delegate must reconcile all Purchasing Card purchases in SAP Concur and then these reconciled purchases will follow the established approval workflow. For more information reference the following trainings:

If there is a discrepancy between the receipts and the transaction in SAP Concur, the Cardholder or a delegate must work out the solution. If the Cardholder and receipt and vendor agree with their figures, and the bank is different, the Cardholder, or a delegate, must contact the Purchasing Card Coordinator.

If the vendor and receipt are not in agreement, the Cardholder must contact the vendor to determine where the problem arose. If appropriate, the vendor should issue a credit receipt to correct it.

RETURNED GOODS & SERVICES (UNUSED AND/OR DAMAGED)

Arrangements for Purchasing Card purchases that must be returned to the vendor are the responsibility of the cardholder. Additional follow-up by the cardholder is required to verify that the vendor issues credit documentation and that it is properly processed through VISA. Merchandise may not be returned for a cash refund.

If the purchasing card was used for a personal purchase and the vendor is unable to issue a credit for the purchase, the FO must verify that repayment has been made and receive confirmation that a fully processed deposit has been completed and approved prior to approving the expense report.

MONTHLY STATEMENTS AND FOLLOW-UP

Monthly statements from the Issuing Bank will not be sent to the cardholder since the cardholder is required to review and verify transactions before submitting the expense report through SAP Concur. If the cardholder elects a delegate to submit the expense report on their behalf, the delegate will be required to attach a copy of the report with the standard certification signed by the report owner. Cardholders may also access transaction information for their purchasing card through the Centre Suite system provided by the Issuing Bank.

DISPUTES

If the Cardholder has returned merchandise (or requested credit for an authorized service) and has not received credit within 30 days, if there are charges that the Cardholder knows nothing about but the vendor determines are valid, or there are other disputes between the Cardholder and the vendor, the Cardholder must prepare a Billing Inquiry form, completing the requested information. The Cardholder must sign it, provide a copy to the FO, and forward it to the Issuing Bank via billinginquiries@pnc.com email or fax for processing and resolution.

Disputes must be filed as soon as possible, but no later than 60 days after the statement date on which the transaction appears. Cardholders will be responsible for any losses that are not disputed within the 60-day period.

Cardholders should note on the expense report for the original transaction that a dispute has been filed; including the date the form was emailed or faxed.

The charge can be settled before the dispute is resolved Cardholders should follow-up on any filed disputes for which credit has not been received or which have not already been resolved as valid charges.

UNAUTHORIZED TRANSACTIONS

At times, charges may appear on a Cardholder's account that were not authorized by the Cardholder and were placed by unknown third parties. In these situations, the Cardholder should immediately cancel the purchasing card with the Issuing Bank, notify FO, and the Purchasing Card Coordinator. The purchasing card must be canceled through a Purchasing Card Services Request form in SAP Concur, using the reason code "compromised" and a new purchasing card requested. A dispute form must be filed if the Issuing Bank requests such action. A checklist for handling unauthorized transactions is included on the Lost/Stolen or Compromised Card Checklist (Exhibit "D" Page 1 and Exhibit "D" Page 2).

The Cardholder, or authorized SAP Concur delegate, should review purchasing card transactions in SAP Concur on a regular basis and contact the FO immediately if charges are posted which were not authorized by the Cardholder. The FO will then determine how to settle the charges in SAP Concur in consultation with the SAP Concur Helpdesk.

The Purchasing Card Coordinator will monitor unauthorized purchasing card transactions and will notify the Assistant Controller/Director, University Financial Officers, and Internal Auditing if any patterns of unauthorized use become apparent. Cardholders are responsible for assuring that unauthorized charges, which were posted to Penn State accounts, are properly credited.

MAINTENANCE OF RECORDS

Goods & Services

Documentation that confirms the goods, materials, or authorized services were ordered and received, and the amount of the transaction must be obtained by the cardholder.

For Purchasing Card acquisition, the cardholder is responsible for the following:

The original purchase documentation is always to be given to the delegate if the cardholder does not prepare their own expense report.

Travel and Group Meals/Meetings

Refer to University Policy TR02 Penn State Travel for specific instructions involving travel.

MISSING OR STOLEN PURCHASING CARDS

If a Cardholder discovers their purchasing card is missing or stolen, they must notify the Issuing Bank immediately by calling 1-877-PSU-4PNC. Notification must also be made to the FO. In addition, a Purchasing Card Services Request form must be processed by the business area to complete the cancellation (check with the FO).

NOTE: Cardholders at the College of Medicine must also notify their Purchasing Card Coordinator.

Once the purchasing card has been reported missing or stolen to be canceled immediately and no further charges can be made using that purchasing card. The University liability ceases only upon notification of cancellation to the issuing bank unless fraud is detected and proven. If a purchasing card is not reported missing or stolen to the Issuing Bank for cancellation, fraudulent charges will accrue up until the time of cancellation by the Cardholder. These could become the responsibility of the Cardholder or business area to pay.

RETURN OF PURCHASING CARDS

If a purchasing card is returned to the business area or FO for any reason (misuse, retirement, termination, etc.), the business area or FO must use the Card Services Request form to cancel the purchasing card (form is approved by the budget administrator/budget executive and FO). If a purchasing card must be canceled immediately, the FO should contact the Purchasing Card Coordinator and request that the purchasing card be canceled immediately with the Issuing Bank. A Purchasing Card Services Request form must be processed to complete the cancellation. Information from the Card Services Request form is automatically transmitted to the Issuing Bank for their appropriate action. Once the purchasing card has been canceled, it must be shredded or destroyed so the purchasing card number is no longer readable and disposed of securely. The University liability ceases only upon notification of cancellation to the Issuing Bank unless fraud is detected and proven.

NOTE: If a Cardholder is transferring from one administrative area to another, a Purchasing Card Services Request form must be used to approve the transfer of the purchasing card to the new area.

ADJUSTMENTS TO THE PURCHASING CARD

There will be times that a purchasing card must be deactivated (suspended) or dollar limits revised for a brief period of time (during a leave of absence, nearing year-end, etc.). Other data concerning the purchasing card may also need revision, including name changes or change of address. The Purchasing Card Services Request form will be completed and approved by the budget executive or budget administrator AND the FO and submitted to the Purchasing Card Coordinator. If required, the Issuing Bank will be notified of the requested changes.

The Purchasing Card Services Request form would also be used to provide Goods & Services or Travel and Group Meal/Meeting spending limits to cardholders who have a purchasing card but were not previously authorized for one of these limits. The Cardholder must pass the appropriate cardholder certification quiz before limits can be updated.

In situations when a new purchasing card will be issued, the old purchasing card must be shredded or destroyed so the purchasing card number is no longer readable and disposed of securely.

ACCOUNTING OPERATIONS

Invoices

The Issuing Bank will submit to the University a weekly summary 'Invoice' which is the accumulation of the daily electronic notices that are distributed to the University for SAP Concur. The systems will provide a check figure of the amounts received each day during the billing cycle to compare to the electronic invoice. The contracted cut-off date/time must be taken into account for this comparison to be valid.

Payment

The summary invoice is paid within the contracted time frame by Accounting Operations. The payment may be delayed if there is a major difference between the daily electronic transmissions and the weekly electronic invoice. Generally, however, payments will be made regardless of any differences, to meet the contract terms. Adjustments will be made later by the Issuing Bank or vendor to settle differences.

Payments will be made from the 15010060 GL Fund 1100000001. Differences and disputes will be reconciled and confirmed by Accounting Operations, in consultation with Purchasing, for the next cycle of activity.

Discrepancies

Any differences occurring between SAP Concur, Accounting Operations, and the reconciled items will be reviewed and resolved by the Purchasing Card Coordinator, Reconciler, FO and Corporate Controller's Office.

EXCEPTIONS

Exceptions to this procedure must be approved by the Corporate Controller and the Chief Procurement Officer, as stated in University Policy BS14 Penn State Purchasing Card.

AUDIT COORDINATION - FINANCIAL AND PROCEDURAL

The Financial Officer is responsible for ensuring that procedures pertaining to the accountability and safeguarding of all cash receipts, cash funds, and other assets are established and followed in accordance with approved University policies and procedures. Regular audits relating to advances, cash, travel, equipment accountability, and other expenditures provide a means to protect University assets. The Financial Officer is responsible for working with Internal Audit when audits are being performed in the administrative area. Audits pertaining to sponsored activities or other audits performed by external auditors may also be performed. The Financial Officer is also responsible for working with the external auditor and/or a central university office related to these procedures.

UNIVERSITY RECORDS RETENTION AND DISPOSITION

University Records retention must be managed in accordance with Policy AD35 University Archives and Records Management, and retention schedules approved by the Records Management Advisory Committee, the Office of General Counsel, and Vice President for Administration. These records retention schedules are derived from - or based upon - federal, state, and local statute or regulations, University Policy, industry standards, and business needs. All University Records must be maintained in such a manner to provide ease of access, establish a suitable audit trail for all transactions, and to be reviewed prior to disposition.

Upon expiration of the retention period, University Records must be disposed of via secure destruction or transfer to University Archives, unless an exception to the disposition process set forth below applies. If the disposition method for University Records states "Review by Archives" on the records retention schedule, the employees responsible for those records should consult the University Archivist for a final determination of disposition. For University Records that must be securely destroyed, units may arrange for shredding services by either contacting the Blue/White Shredding Program or the Inactive Records Center.

Exceptions to the disposition process are as follows:

To safeguard the privacy of individual, records that contain Personally Identifiable Information (PII), as defined in University Policy AD53 Privacy Policy, or student records, as defined in University Policy AD11 Confidentiality of Student Records, must be destroyed beyond recover. For additional information regarding privacy and the protection of an individual's personal information, see Policy AD53 Privacy Policy.

Additional questions may be directed to the Office of Records Management.

EXHIBITS

CONTACT INFORMATION

For questions, additional detail, or to request changes to this procedure, please contact the e-Procurement, Purchasing Card & Travel Manager

CROSS REFERENCES


PROCEDURE STATUS

DATE APPROVED

05/06/2022

MOST RECENT CHANGES

REVISION HISTORY