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Procurement Card Policy

Effective Date: March 1, 2016
Last Revision: July 1, 2016
Responsible Officer: Associate Vice President of Procurement Services


  1. The purpose of this Procurement Card Policy (this "Policy") is to provide structure, limits and accountability in the use of a Procurement Card.
  2. It is a privilege to have a Procurement Card (P-Card), and possession comes with specific requirements and responsibilities. This privilege will be revoked if these requirements and responsibilities are not satisfied. This Policy provides substantial consequences for violating Policy requirements.
  3. Procurement Cards provide a convenient, efficient and managed approach for appropriate small dollar purchasing transactions. A Procurement Card is offered to the Cardholder to ease their administrative burdens related to Allowable Purchases.
  4. This Policy lays out allowable uses of a Procurement Card and articulates responsibilities of Cardholders, Approvers and Budget Owners.
  5. This Policy also provides structure around routine audits that will be conducted to ensure proper oversight to the program.


For the purpose of this Policy, "University" refers to Drexel University and its colleges, schools, divisions, subsidiaries and affiliates. All University trustees, officers, faculty, staff, students and consultants are subject to this Policy.


  1. Allowable Purchases: Those purchases listed in Section (A) (1) below.
  2. Approver: An employee designated by a Budget Owner who is responsible for approval of transactions and statements on a particular P-Card(s). The Approver is responsible for ensuring the Cardholders they approve are complying with P-Card Policy.
  3. Audit: The review of a Cardholder's monthly statement by the P-Card Office to ensure compliance with this Policy.
  4. Budget Owner: A dean, department head, director or vice president who is directly responsible for a University budget.
  5. Cardholder: A University employee whose name appears on a Procurement Card and who is responsible/accountable for all charges made with that specific P-Card.
  6. Consequence: Specific penalties or actions that may be taken by Procurement Services as outlined in Section N to increase assurance of compliance to this Policy.
  7. Guidelines: P-Card Guidelines.
  8. Monthly Cycle: A designated period of time in which a P-Card is utilized for making Allowable Purchases.
  9. Monthly Reconciliation: The process for reviewing each Transaction within the Monthly Cycle, by assigning appropriate fund, organization, account code and providing clear detailed notes.
  10. Procurement Card (P-Card): A purchasing tool issued by University Procurement Services exclusive for authorized business expenditures.
  11. P-Card Limits: The specific dollar amounts allowed for an individual card Transaction as well as the monthly total allowed during a Monthly Cycle.
  12. Stringing/Splitting: Where a single purchase is broken into multiple transactions to intentionally circumvent individual P-Card transaction limits.
  13. Transaction: A single purchase or a credit.


  1. Allowable Purchases
    1. The P-Card is to only be used when the good or service needed is not available through the Smart Source Marketplace, is for a legitimate business need, falls under the P-Card Limits and is not otherwise restricted by existing policies ("Allowable Purchases"). The following list represents items that are Allowable Purchases for P-Cards. The list is not exhaustive but provides commonly purchased items that are Allowable Purchases.
      1. Conference and Seminar Registrations;
      2. Non-capital equipment (but excluding computers);
      3. Dues, memberships, licenses, application fees;
      4. Airline, hotel, bus, rail, rental car and meals for University related business travel;
      5. Books, publications, periodicals, subscriptions, newsletters, videos;
      6. Interlibrary loans to external libraries; and
      7. Meals and entertainment for business purposes, including incidental purchases of alcohol in connection therewith.
  2. Prohibited Purchases
    1. Use of a P-Card for non-Allowable Purchases is prohibited. The following list provides guidance in determining what types of purchases are prohibited from Procurement Card. It is the responsibility of the Cardholder and Approver to assure that all purchases made with the Procurement Card are Allowable Purchases.
      1. Any product that is available through the Smart Source marketplace;
      2. Gift Cards;
      3. Personal charges of any kind;
      4. Hotel incidentals;
      5. Gasoline for personal vehicles;
      6. Furniture;
      7. Computers;
      8. Cash advances or cash withdrawals;
      9. Faculty clubs;
      10. Cell phones;
      11. Any purchase that requires a separately signed contract or agreement unless specifically authorized by Procurement Services;
      12. Sponsorships and Donations: See Drexel's Policy Regarding Sponsorship of External Non-Profit Organizations;
      13. Any purchase that has to be installed, hard-wired, plumbed or assembled;
      14. Purchases with a potential risk or exposure to liability for the University such as items that present special health, safety, occupational or environmental risks (e.g., radioactive material, animals, controlled substance, ammunition, etc.); and
      15. Stringing/Splitting.
  3. Card Limits
    1. The Associate Vice President of Procurement Services sets P-Card Limits. These limits include single Transaction, Transactions per Monthly Cycle and total spend per Monthly Cycle. Current P-Card Limits can be found in the Guidelines.
    2. Regardless of the maximum limits allowed, specific limits will be established by the Budget Owner for each Cardholder based on reasonable and normal requirements and should be set at the lowest level possible that will satisfy those needs. It is the responsibility of the Budget Owner and Approver to recommend adjustments to the allowed limits for those Cardholders under their hierarchy.
    3. Actual usage will be periodically reviewed by the P-Card office and may be adjusted at any time based on actual need.
  4. For staff business lunches, hosting retreats and/or other similar events, the senior-most level Cardholder must utilize their P-Card for expenses in order to appropriately track these business expenses. Splitting these bills among multiple Cardholders is not allowed and would constitute Stringing/Splitting.

  5. If the Cardholder is on extended leave (Sabbatical, FMLA or personal leave) it is the responsibility of the Approver to notify the P-Card Office immediately, and the P-Card will be placed on temporary suspension until Cardholder returns to work.

  6. Termination: Upon a Cardholder's termination of employment or transfer to another position in the University, the P-Card must be cancelled within 48 hours. It is the responsibility of the Approver to notify the P-Card Office. If a transfer occurs within the University and a P-Card is still needed, a new application must be completed.

  7. Responsibilities of Cardholders:
    1. Ensure purchases are made only for University-related business;
    2. Abide by this Policy and Guidelines;
    3. Successfully complete required training and re-training;
    4. Provide the proper account information and business purpose for each Transaction;
    5. Maintain the security of the Procurement Card at all times and immediately report a lost, stolen or compromised card to JP Morgan Customer Service, 800.270.7760, the Approver, and P-Card Office (;
    6. Obtain and keep original receipts for each Transaction valued at $75 or greater. If an original detailed receipt is lost, then the Cardholder must reach out to the merchant to obtain a duplicate detailed receipt. If the Cardholder is not successful with obtaining a duplicate receipt they are to complete the Missing Receipt Form. This form also requires a signature from a Budget Owner;
    7. Ensure that sales tax is not charged in states where the University is exempt;
    8. Prepare the monthly Transaction Allocation Report and supporting documentation for each Transaction, submit Transaction Allocation Report to Approver for review and signature, and forward completed and approved Transaction Allocation Report to by the deadline.
  8. Responsibilities of Approvers:
    1. Abide by this Policy and the Guidelines;
    2. Successfully complete training and retraining requirements as outlined in the Guidelines;
    3. Review in detail the Transactions of Cardholders assigned to them and make adjustments to accounting codes and transaction notes when needed;
    4. Assure that each Transaction meets the requirements of this Policy and any other applicable policy;
    5. Affirm each month that all statements and details are complete, compliant and on time;
    6. Ensure that sales tax is not charged to the Cardholder in states where the University is exempt;
    7. Assure that P-Cards are collected from employees that are terminating for any reason or transferring to another department in accordance with Section (J) below and ensure that all reconciliation and Transaction Allocation Reports have been completed as part of the employee exit interview;
    8. Approve and Sign the Cardholder's Transaction Allocation Report; and
    9. Immediately report abuse or misuse to
  9. Responsibilities of Budget Owner:
    1. Approve the P-Card Application Form;
    2. Set appropriate transaction limits;
    3. Ensure that Cardholders and Approvers are aware of all P-Card policies, guidelines, and timetables;
    4. Provide sufficient oversight and review to assure compliance of all Cardholders and Approvers.
  10. Approving P-Card applications and roles within the College or Department:
    1. All applications for a P-Card must be approved by the Budget Owner of the College or Department.
    2. Assignment of roles within the P-Card program are made by the Budget Owner of the College or Department.
  11. Exceptions to P-Card Limits:
    1. When it is determined that the University interest would be best served, an exception to P-Card Limits may be granted by the Associate Vice President of Procurement Services or his/her designee.
    2. Such exception must be properly documented including the business need satisfied through the exception.
  12. Sales Tax Exemption - The University is tax exempt and should not pay sales tax in Pennsylvania and select other states. For a complete listing of state, please review the Sales Tax information on the Procurement Services website. Tax exemption may only be used with the use of a P-Card. The tax-exempt number and certificates may not be used for personal purchase at any time, even if the purchase may be reimbursable by the University.
    1. The University's PA tax-exempt number is on the front of each P-Card. The Cardholder is responsible for ensuring that sales tax is not charged at the time of purchase.
    2. If sales tax is charged by mistake, the Cardholder is responsible for taking reasonable measures to have the tax credited.
    3. This tax exemption does not apply in all states, but it is the responsibility of the Cardholder to take the exemption whenever allowed.
    4. Additional information on sales tax exemption can be obtained by contacting the Tax Office at
  13. Audits
    1. The P-Card Office will conduct regular, random Audits of Cardholders.
    2. If findings result from these Audits, the following will apply:
      1. A response will be required from the Cardholder addressing each finding including steps to be taken to assure future compliance; and
      2. A follow-up Audit will be conducted within 6 months to assure that corrective measures have been put in place.
    3. Failure to comply with Audits in any way will result in the immediate suspension of all affected P-Cards until compliance is achieved.
  14. Consequences
    1. Having a P-Card requires strict adherence to this Policy and Guidelines.
    2. When violations of the Policy and Guidelines are identified, Consequences will occur.
    3. These Consequences are created with the intention of encouraging compliance to the Policy, and may include suspension and eventual cancellation of P-Card privileges and other disciplinary action.
    4. Specific Consequences for P-Card misuse or non-compliance are found in the Guidelines.
    5. It is the responsibility of the Cardholder, Approver and Budget Owner to understand and properly use and administer this program.