SGA talks money management
Published: Monday, October 8, 2012
Updated: Monday, October 8, 2012 18:10
A new university-wide purchasing policy was recently put into effect; however, many new problems have surfaced when it comes to the purchase order process and miscommunication between departments.
Brett Stachler, chair of the Student Activities Fee Allocation Committee, brought his personal concerns to the students at last Tuesday’s SGA meeting.
“I am here as an individual to kind of bring light to a new policy that has been enacted throughout the university this year. I’m also going to speak a little bit upon feedback that we have heard when it comes to purchase order processing,” Stachler said.
According to Stachler, any purchase made by the university or a student organization that is less than $500 is processed with a university check or credit card. The policy on credit cards has changed.
“In the past this card has been in the university’s name. Right now the policy is that the card is in individual’s name, and there are lots of practical reasons as to why this is a bit of an unwise decision,” said Stachler.
With the credit cards in an individual’s name, it can affect personal credit scores if payments are not made on time.
Any purchase made that is above $500 must be processed through a purchase order and sent to the business office. The money is then transferred to whoever is receiving the payment.
Stachler cited issues with communication between the business office and other departments, some that have had very significant consequences. Stachler said that there was even an instance last spring when a performer came to campus, and it wasn’t until the summer before it was discovered the performer was never paid.
“Obviously we want to have efficiency when it comes to our student organizations because they are the ones that are really putting on creative events when it comes to social justice oriented things,” Stachler said.
Stachler wanted to bring this issue to the attention of the SGA to garner feedback and opinions, but ultimately find solutions.
This conflict not only impacts SGA and student organizations but also the university’s activities board, Students Programming for Enrichment, Enlightenment and Development.
Cherise Johnson, SGA vice president and former SPEED board member, said that when she worked with the activities board, she recalled performers not getting paid for months after they had visited the campus.
SGA will be looking for ways to improve accountability when it comes to purchase orders and the business office and their direct effect on student organizations.
“So one thing that we can do is have a talk with other organizations and get their feedback on this very idea to get exactly how this affects them and what they feel should be the next step for all students to do,” SGA President Channing Redditt said.
Has your student organization been affected by changes to purchase orders? Tweet us @RUTORCH