Policy Steward: 
Manager of Analytical Ops
Format Updated: 
University Policy & Standards Converted: 
Draft or Revision in Progress
Revision Date: 
Wednesday, April 4, 2018

* This information replaces FIS 410-04 Flower Purchases & FIS 410-20 Payment of Fines & FIS 410-23 Testing Incentives & FIS 410-28 Greeting Cards & FIS 410-31 Utilities for Short Term Field Crew Housing


Flower Purchases

Effective: 01/01/2003
Revised: 04/04/2018

Only some flower purchases are considered acceptable expenses with OSU Funds.  Flowers may be purchased to:

  • Use in classes such as botany or biology
  • Use at commencements (University or college-level)
  • Present as a prize for competition; however, account code 2016x Awards should be used for the purchase
  • Use by UHDS Catering for event banquets or receptions
  • Use in a Student Activities sponsored function, such as a drama production (cost is charged to a student activity fund). 
  • Use for landscaping beautification projects on University property by an authorized central or auxiliary shop  

Any other purchase of flowers for other occasions should be submitted to OSU Foundation (OSUF) for payment.


Payment of Fines

Effective: 01/01/2003
Revised: 12/30/2014

Departments in the University sometimes receive fines for such things as safety violations.  These are paid on a regular invoice using account code 28910 Fines and Penalties - Costs resulting from violations of – or failure to comply with – federal, state, local or foreign laws and regulations.

Parking fines and book fines may not be paid from institutional funds.  This includes parking fines assigned to state vehicles.  Parking fines are the responsibility of the person renting the vehicle.  If the University owns the vehicle and the person does not pay the fine, OSU could pay the fine (to an outside entity only) and charge the individual.  The payment of the fine would be put on FIS as an A3140 receivable account code, with Transportation Service’s 9xxxxx fund.  Personal fines are not an expense of the University.


Testing Incentives

Effective: 01/01/2003
Revised: 12/01/2010

Units who perform testing of products often advertise that they will give anyone who takes the test an incentive, for example $5.00.  The unit will pay out the testing incentives and document how much was given, and to whom.  A Departmental Advance is required to receive the funds to distribute.  The advance will be “cleared” by the appropriate Business Center through the process identified in FIS 407-07 Departmental Advances (Non-Travel).

Account codes to be used –

  • 20190 Testing Group Incentives - Expenditures for items to be given as incentives for volunteers who serve on a test panel or survey group. Includes gift certificates and other non-cash items.
  • 25140 Research Subjects - This code concerns payment to persons who contribute to research projects, but are not required to perform personal services. This includes: (1) those who contribute blood or other human specimens, (2) those who contribute time to be a subject of research projects and (3) the costs of gift certificates.

If you are unsure whether an Institutional Review Board (IRB) application is necessary for your research project, please check with the Office of Research Integrity within the Research Office.


Greeting Cards

Effective: 01/01/2003
Revised: 12/02/2008

Payment of holiday cards is allowed with University funds ONLY if account code 28613, Public Relations is used.  This assumes that holiday cards are sent to donors and alumni.  Do not use the 246xx printing account codes.  The preference is to use "M2" gift indexes or "FS" OSU Foundation indexes.  If a general fund index is used, use an index with development" in the title.

Respect the diversity of the University, and when processing the payment, do not refer to these cards as Christmas cards in the Banner Description.

It is not appropriate to pay for any other greeting cards with University funds.


Utilities for Short Term Field Crew Housing

Effective: 01/01/2003
Revised: 12/02/2008

There are times when housing is rented for students or faculty to enable projects to be conducted away from OSU-owned facilities.  This housing may be a travel trailer, mobile home, cabin, bunkhouse, tent, or other facility.  When utilities are paid separately from the rent, it is important to distinguish these utility costs from those connected with university-owned property.  Use Account Code 23099 “Miscellaneous Utilities” for this purpose.  Costs could include electricity, water/sewer, natural gas, propane, garbage.  Do not use any other 23xxx account codes for this purpose.

Continue to use Account Code 24151 “Building Rental” for the housing rental itself.