St. Cloud State University Foundation

Discretionary Spending Policy

3.1.2019

I. Purpose and Scope

The policy provides authorized signers with guidelines on the eligibility of expenses associated with fund which are considered "discretionary" in that they are not governed by a fund agreement which strictly defines what may be paid by that fund.

The Foundation's Board of Trustees retains ultimate authority over all expenditures from Foundation funds. From time to time and for certain funds, the Foundation's Board of Trustees may look to advisors to make suggestions regarding expenditures from funds. Only Unit/Department Heads, or the Unit/Department Head's designees so provided in written documentation to the Executive Director of the SCSU Foundation, are authorized to make requests for expenditures from their department's Program Fund(s). Any request for expenditure may be accepted or rejected, in whole or in part, by the SCSU Foundation Board of Trustees, in its sole and absolute discretion.

The Foundation will not reimburse a University employee for any type of expense eligible for reimbursement under the employee's personnel plan or bargaining agreement. University employees shall not be paid or reimbursed by the Foundation for any expense or receive other benefits from the Foundation that would constitute taxable income to the employee under IRS regulations or additional compensation under state law. University employees may not receive reimbursement or other benefit that create a conflict of interest or compensation from an outside source prohibited by Minnesota Statutes 43A.38 or other law, rule or policy.

Note: If Business Office column states yes, then payment must go through the Business Office first. In certain instances the Foundation may transfer funds to
to cover the expense.

 

II. Policy

The detailed policy requirements for various expenditure categories may be reviewed below.

Type of Transaction State Funds SCSU Foundation Funds State Comments Foundation Comments
Alcoholic Beverages/on-campus & off-campus No Yes Cannot be paid from University. On campus service of alcohol is subject to University policy with prior approval required. Reasonable expenses are eligible for reimbursement when hosting and entertaining official University guests such as alumni, donors, external peers, university partners and corporate guests only. Employees not entertaining external constituents will not be reimbursed for alcohol purchases.
Apparel/Employees No Yes Cannot be paid from University. Foundation funds may only be used if the apparel is required by all employees at a special event, e.g., admissions/recruiting, job fair, etc. for marketing purposes only. Foundation funds may not be used for daily wear. Any purchases exceeding $50 per person requires prior approval.
Apparel/Students Yes Yes University funds can be used to purchase uniforms for student employees, always requires a special expense form. Foundation funds may only be used if the apparel is required by all employees at a special event, e.g., admissions/recruiting, job fair, etc. for marketing purposes only. Foundation funds may not be used for daily wear. Any purchases exceeding $50 per person requires prior approval. Business Office, see Student Apparel Policy.
Cards
Holiday/Greeting Cards and Postage
No Yes Cannot be paid from University. External constituents only
Candy Yes Yes Requires special expense form and only for cases as part of instruction. Foundation Funds may be used for campus events such as Student Life events and activities, recruitment, orientation, etc. Foundation funds may not be used for filling office candy dishes or in-classroom student/employee appreciation.
Contributions      
To political parties or politicians No No Cannot be paid from University. Political contributions are prohibited by the IRS.
Memorial contributions No No Cannot be paid from University. No contributions in lieu of flowers.
Non-profit organizations No No Cannot be paid from University.  
Dues      
Institutional Yes Yes If University funds are insufficient, funds may be transferred from the SCSU Foundation to cover the expense
Individual Professional Membership Yes Yes If University funds are insufficient, funds may be transferred from the SCSU Foundation to cover the expense.
Civic, Service No Yes Pursuant to official SCSU business only.
Private Clubs No Yes SCSU President.
Professional Licenses Yes Yes Job dependent Must be required or expected as a condition of position.
Employee Awards & Research Rewards
Employee Award/Incentive Programs Yes Yes University incentives only through Human Resources Awards require special expense forms Non-cash awards such as plaques & trophies and nominal recognition. Business Office requires a Special Expense Form.
Gift Cards/Gift Certificates No No  
Entertainment/Performance      
Employees Prior Approval Required Yes Approval provided by Special Expense form process. Allowable when in official university capacity such as donor cultivation or community or industry partnership. Entertaining at a personal residence is allowed as long as President's approval has been obtained and that commercially prepared food is served. No alcohol is allowed.
Non-Employees Prior Approval Required Yes Approval provided by Special Expense form process. Allowable when in official university capacity such as donor cultivation or community or industry partnership. The Business Office requires a Special Expense form.
Entrance Fees-Students & Employees Prior Approval Required Yes Approval provided by Special Expense form process. Foundation funds may be used for entrance fees to charitable events such as golf scrambles, fishing tournaments, trivia nights, Boy Scout tournaments, Lawn Socials, etc., only when acting in an official SCSU capacity. The Business Office requires a Special Expense form. State funds are limited to educational purposes and when on official SCSU business.
Equipment      
Capital equipment (including computer equipment) Yes Yes Foundation will not directly pay, however we will transfer approved capital purchases to Business Services.
Furniture Yes Yes Foundation will not directly pay, however we will transfer approved capital purchases to Business Services.
Flowers      
Congratulatory No No Cannot be paid from University.  
Employee Recognition Days (Secretary's Day, etc.) No No Cannot be paid from University.    
Event decorations Yes Yes The Business Office requires a Special Expense form. Must be University sanctioned events. Receipt is required including title and purpose of the event.
Funeral/Illness No Yes Cannot be paid from University. Limited to employee, immediate family members and students as defined by employee sick leave guidelines, and board/advisory council members and university partners. A $100 limit per occasion (receipt required including name of deceased and relationship to SCSU.)
Gratuity Yes Yes Reimbursement is limited to a maximum of 20%. Reimbursement is limited to a maximum of 20%. Business Office union contract daily meal allowance.
Gifts      
Employee Retirement No Yes Cannot be paid from University. Gifts are permitted for up to a $100 limit. No gift cards.
Gift Cards No No Cannot be paid from University. No gift cards may be given to students, student employees or university employees. Considered taxable income by the IRS.
Non-Cash/Non-Employee No No Non-cash gifts and gift cards are not allowable except under circumstances described under "Donors Official Guests" section.
Donors & Official Guests      
Appreciation Yes Yes University special expense required Token of appreciation given in recognition at a special occasions such as a guest speaker/lecturer, etc. Limit $25. No gift cards.
Special Occasions Yes Yes University special expense required Token of appreciation given in recognition at a special event such as an Advisory Council meeting, donor or corporate partner visit or action. Limit $25. No gift cards. The Business Office requires a Special Expense form.
Athletic/Special Event Tickets No Yes Token of appreciation given in recognition at a special occasions such as a guest speaker/lecturer, etc. Limit $25. No gift cards.
Honoraria Yes Yes University requires contracts with vendor. Foundation requires the business purpose or agenda and a list of meeting participants. Funds can be transferred to the Business Office.
Meals      
For all food purchases a special expense form is required by Business Services. Per IRS requirements, the Foundation requires the business purpose or agenda and who was at the meeting. All open invitations must include a copy of the invitation.
Appreciation & “Just Because” for Faculty/Staff & Students No No Includes classroom participation.
Candidate interviews Yes Yes Special expense form required. Commercially prepared food only.
Community Engagement Events Yes Yes Special expense form required. Commercially prepared food only.
Employee entertaining employee No No Excludes Office of the President.
Entertaining at employee's home No Yes President only conducting official SCSU business. Commercially prepared food only.
Formally organized events Yes Yes Special expense form required only for University-wide events. Convocation commencement reception, faculty/staff welcome gathering, ice cream socials, retirement functions, non-regularly scheduled retreats and workshops. Commercially prepared food only.
Regularly recurring departmental/employee meetings No No Includes team meetings.
Mileage/Travel Reimbursement - MUST GO THROUGH BUSINESS SERVICES
Employee Travel Yes No
Education related - Student travel Yes Yes Education related travel expenses and conference registrations fees are allowable expenses.
Professional Association & Student Conference Registration Fee Yes Yes Education related travel expenses and conference registrations fees are allowable expenses.
Miscellaneous      
SCSU Parking Permits or Citation No No    
Cellphones Yes No Only when paid directly by University
Home Internet Access Yes No From PDF only
Non-Employee Awards      
Awards No Yes Any award must have a completed W-9 before award can be given to winner
Inducement to participate in faculty research study Yes Yes With a special expense form and only as part of an approved grant agreement The use of a nominal level gift card as an inducement/enticement to participate in a faculty research study is allowable
Office Expenses      
Appliances No Yes Purchase of small appliances is allowed for department or school/college/unit use. Not for individual use. All capital purchases become the property of SCSU and items must be tagged by Inventory Control.
Common Area Pictures, Artwork, Decorations Yes Yes University special expense required
Computers and Instruments Yes No
Course related materials and books Yes No    
Event Decorations Yes Yes Special expense form required only for University-wide events.
Holiday Decorations No No    
Individual office decorations No No    
Supplies Yes Yes Transfer to Business Services. If purchased by employee must be reimbursed through business services.
Student Payments, Employment, Assistantships & Scholarships
Scholarships and Fees Yes Yes Payments to a student goes through Financial Aid as a scholarship award or through the Business Office. The Foundation will transfer the money to business services.
Employment Yes No Student Payroll only If donor funded, Foundation will transfer to Business Services.
Graduate Assistantships Yes No Student Payroll only If donor funded, Foundation will transfer to Business Services.
Transfers      
Business Services to Foundation No N/A
Foundation to Business Services N/A Yes Expense must be allowable per the Fund agreement & include documentation and explanation as to why this transfer is needed. Business Services cost center must be provided.
Foundation to Foundation N/A Yes Expense must be allowable per the Fund agreement & include documentation and explanation as to why this transfer is needed.