Staff Spending Guidelines

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These guidelines are designed to empower staff members to spend money when needed and provide oversight of expenditures. Currently tracking budgets by program or work area is technically difficult, so these guideline will hopefully encourage people to spend on legitimate goods and services without an unduly bureaucratic burden being placed on anyone.

  • If the expense is covered by another policy that is in effect, please refer to that policy. This is designed to cover holes in the existing policies and procedures, rather than to replace them.
  • If the expense is a recurring event that support our general operation (for example a utility bill or rent) then the ongoing expense should be discussed up front, and is not covered by this.
  • This does cover expenses that are not referred to above, regardless of the payment method. That is it covers expenses that are made by credit or debit card, paypal account, direct transfer from bank, cash borrowed from a till, personal payments expected to be reimbursed or any other payment method.
  • All transactions should be documented and should be legitimate business expenses furthering the mission and goals or allowing the operation of Free Geek.

All that said, in general:

  1. If the expenditure is less that $100 use your judgment in making the purchase.
  2. If the expenditure is at least $100 but less that $500, get approval from the appropriate Department Point Person.
  3. If the expenditure is at least $500 get approval from the staff collective, ideally by bringing it to a staff collective meeting.
  4. If the expenditure is at least $1,000 the staff collective should get approval from the board of directors, unless the board mandates a different level.

Emergencies and time-sensitive purchases may be made on case-by-case basis, following the spirit of these guidelines as closely as applicable.

Please provide as much lead time as you can by emailing the department point person and/or staff collective.

If you are expecting a repeat a purchase for a related set of items or services the amount should be aggregated and treated as the sum of all the amounts. Example: the store is buying 8 new shelves, but getting them individually at about $100/ea. This should be anticipated and treated as a $500-$1K expense.

Staff are expected to go through the required channels before taking expenditure to check-signers.

The beancounters group will review all expenditures and regularly publish a report to all staff.

The staff collective will revisit these guideline in a few months.

RfS 19:22, 22 July 2011 (UTC)