Research Incentive Petty Cash Funds should be used solely for the payment of incentives or reimbursement of costs to participants in sponsored research programs conducted under the direction of the Health Sciences Center. The procedures below provide a uniform and systematic method in the establishment and maintenance of Research Incentive Petty Cash Funds administered through the sponsored programs (SPNSR) fund.
Establishment of Research Incentive Petty Cash Funds
A written request from the Principal Investigator for the establishment of a Research Incentive Petty Cash Fund must be submitted for prior approval. The request for the fund must contain the following information:
- Justification or reason(s) for the fund.
- Name of the responsible party (custodian) of the fund.
- Sponsored research program (project number) to be used as the source of funding.
- Amount requested and the methodology used in determining the amount.
- Estimated time duration for the fund.
- A PeopleSoft voucher with GL code 113000 payable to the fund custodian.
- A signed Form 3 Claim made payable to the fund custodian.
- An IRB approved Patient Consent form.
- Copy of departmental policies and procedures outlining the controls over cash management, if not already on file with Internal Audit.
The referenced forms should be sent to Accounts Payable. All requests for establishment of Research Incentive Petty Cash Funds must be approved by Grants and Contracts Accounting and the Financial Reporting Manager prior to being established.
- Expenditures against Research Incentive Petty Cash Funds must not exceed the established authorized dollar limit.
- Research Incentive Petty Cash Funds will not exceed $1500. Short term exceptions (1-2 months) may be approved by the Controller on a case-by-case basis.
- Petty cash funds must be secured within the department or at the site research is being conducted. At no time is it permissible for funds to be maintained in an outside bank account.
- Disbursements against the Research Incentive Petty Cash Funds are restricted to the payment of incentives or reimbursement of costs to participants in the sponsored research program. Incentive payments must match the IRB approved protocol. No other disbursements should be made from the fund.
- Research Incentive Petty Cash Funds should not be co-mingled with other cash funds.
- Duties of Research Incentive Petty Cash Funds custodians should not include responsibilities of other cash receipting activities.
- The Principal Investigator or his/her designee is required to conduct independent, surprise cash counts on a non-routine basis of each fund and to maintain supporting documentation for each verification for audit purposes. The procedure for conducting a surprise petty cash fund count can be located at Cash Fund Counts.
- Research Incentive Petty Cash Funds are subject to periodic verifications conducted by Financial Services, Grants and Contracts Accounting and/or Internal Audit.
Maintenance of Petty Cash Funds
Initiation of fund maintenance will begin with the receipt of the Research Incentive Petty Cash Fund proceeds from Financial Services. Funds received should be kept in a secure location, i.e., safe, locked desk, etc. Evidence of disbursements should be retained (including a signature of the recipient of funds) and kept with the fund as expenditures are incurred for the approved purpose. The fund must be reconciled monthly to provide an accounting of the amount authorized versus the cash on hand and the amount outstanding not reimbursed to-date.
Reimbursement of expenditures of Research Incentive Petty Cash Funds should be made on a routine basis but no less frequently than monthly. All petty cash funds are required to be replenished prior to June 30th of each year to ensure that all payments are recorded in the correct fiscal year. Procedures to request reimbursement are as follows:
- A voucher payable to the fund custodian must be created in the accounting system and forwarded to the Accounts Payable Section for reimbursement of expenditures made since the prior reimbursement was processed.
- A signed Form 3 Claim payable to the fund custodian must be attached to the voucher including evidence of payment of research incentives and/or reimbursement of costs to participants in the research project (i.e. number of participants, dates, and amounts paid). The request for reimbursement should bring the Petty Cash Fund up to the authorized Petty Cash Fund limit.
Changing Custodians of Research Incentive Petty Cash Funds
When a change of custodian on a Research Incentive Petty Cash Fund is required, an email referencing the specific Research Incentive Petty Cash Fund should be sent to Holly Allen, stating the name, phone number, and departmental mailing address of the new custodian. At the time the responsibility is assumed, the new custodian should count the Research Incentive Petty Cash Fund in the presence of the previous fund custodian or other appropriate departmental staff to insure the fund is intact.
Closing Petty Cash Funds
To close a Research Incentive Petty Cash Fund, process a deposit for the exact cash amount of the fund (GL Code 490900 should be used on the deposit). A memorandum stating your intention to close the fund along with a copy of deposit documentation should be sent to the Financial Reporting Manager in Financial Services.
Participant Payment Policy
Payments to research participants are subject to tax reporting. Please refer to the Participant Payment Policy for details.