Financial Administration

Budget Transfers (F5)

Revised: December 12, 1996


  1. Background

    During the course of a fiscal year, institutions often find it necessary to adjust their Red Book Budget due to unanticipated savings or temporary shifting of institutional priorities. These adjustments may be to major classification of expenditures (salaries, supplies and expense, capital, etc.) or to functional activities (instruction, research, public service, etc.). Because of the temporary (i.e., current fiscal year) basis of these adjustments, budget transfers are processed to affect the change. It is expected that institutions will make all permanent budget adjustments through the Annual Budget process.

    In addition, funding for some programs is budgeted on a systemwide basis and allocated to the institutions during the fiscal year. Budget transfers are also prepared for supplemental funding and/or spending authority approved by the Department of Administration. This policy applies to any changes made to the Regent approved Red Book Budget.

  2. Policy

    Institutions will be responsible for monitoring their budgets. If, during the course of the year, an institution determines it may be in overdraft status at the end of the fiscal year in any appropriation or major class, that institution should initiate the appropriate budget adjustment action according to the procedures outlined below. There should be no overdrafts on final year-end reports.

    All intra-institutional transfers involving activity shifts must be entered by the institutions into the UW Processing Center (UWPC) General Ledger. Other intra-institutional transfers, between departments or accounts, need not be entered into the UWPC General Ledger unless desired by the institution to help with local budget control. Institutions are encouraged and expected to meet departmental needs for budget increases/decreases and major class shifts through use of campus-wide clearing accounts (such as division 98).

    If it is determined that net institutional appropriation totals and/or major class levels need to be adjusted, these can be entered by the institutions according to Appropriation Type (see Appropriations By Fund Type). Increases may be entered using Code 80 budget transfers for PR-CONTINUING, SEG-CONTINUING and PR FEDERAL-CONTINUING appropriations. Increases for all other appropriations must be approved and entered by System Administration. Major class shifts may be entered using Code 30 budget transfers for all appropriation types, except that transfers of GPR Salaries or Fringe Benefits are not allowed.

    Budget status and transfer activity will also be monitored by System Administration through the use of its Financial Management Information System (FMIS) and Info Access data warehouse. System Administration will reconcile monthly the appropriation/major class budgets contained in FMIS with those of the State of Wisconsin accounting system, WiSMART. Allotment transfer requests will be initiated on a periodic basis, according to the reconciliation and projected trends in expenditure patterns.

    While most budget transfers are no longer required to be submitted for prior approval, such movements will continue to be monitored through reviews performed for reporting to the Board of Regents at year-end. With this change in policy, institutions must review all shifts to ensure that resources budgeted and committed to instruction, e.g., are spent there, or be prepared to provide justification.

    Budget transfers which do require prior approval will be initiated by an e-mail or FAX request from the institution. Once approved, these transfers will be entered by System Administration staff. After the data have been entered to the UWPC General Ledger, a copy of the transfer document will be sent to the institution for use in entry on local systems.

  3. Procedures

    1. Frequency of Transfers

      Institutions are to monitor their ability to be in balance by the end of the fiscal year. Requests for budget transfers to System Administration should be made at the time an institution realizes it cannot achieve this objective.

    2. Reporting Level of Transfers

      The UWPC General Ledger will be built to accept UDDS level data. At its option, an institution may enter full UDDS data if that works efficiently for their systems. An institution may, however, enter all of its budget transfers under a single (clearing account) UDDS. No particular UDDS number is required although using something similar to Y-98-9999 might help set it apart as a special clearing account arrangement.

    3. Use of Reason Codes

      Reason Codes will be included on all budget transfers based on Attachment A. An institution may, at its option, expand the number of reason codes used by changing the rollup code of 10, 20, 30 or 80 to a two digit alpha-numeric code beginning with the appropriate number 1, 2, 3 or 8 (e.g., 11, 2g, 8H, etc.).

      Institutions may choose to simply set a default code of 10 (intra-unit transfer) so that a reason code only needs to be keyed for other, less frequent adjustments.

    4. Budget Supplements and Reductions

      The dollar amounts for type 50 and 90 budget transfers will be negotiated between the institutions and System Administration. Once determined, System Administration will enter into the UWPC General Ledger, using the institutionally-designated clearing UDDS at the appropriation, major class, activity level. The institution may then redistribute the amounts to its departmental UDDSs using budget transfers. In the case of some types of supplements, such as pay plan supplements, where a methodology for distribution can be agreed to by a number of institutions, the UW Processing Center may provide a method for institutions to automatically distribute these supplements to the departmental UDDSs. Institutions would then be able to readjust the UWPC actions, if necessary, via additional budget transfers.

    5. Method for Processing Transfers

      Transfer data may be entered into the UWPC General Ledger as follows: Code 10, 20, 30, 80 via on-line entry (EPBT); Code 10 and 20 via on-line entry (BUDT) or on batched FTP files. Transfers requiring System Administration approval will be submitted via an e-mail or FAX request and must include appropriate coding. These transfers will be entered into the UWPC General Ledger by System Administration staff.

    6. Numbering of Budget Transfers

      Only budget transfers which are entered into the UWPC General Ledger require transfer numbers. For those transfers which do require numbers, the only requirement is that a four-digit number be assigned. No specific scheme is required. System Administration will use these numbers, in conjunction with unit code, only for identification purposes (i.e., as a reference/document number should questions arise).

ATTACHMENT A
APPROPRIATIONS BY FUND TYPE