Budget Adjustments

State Budgets

Account Managers can submit requests by email to Kathy Adams (CC: Erin Messer and Meliscia Gilbert) to move budget allocation between the Wages and the Operations lines. Professional and Classified Salaries and related fringes are managed at the Division Level, so any reallocations to or from those lines must be routed through the Provost for the academic departments or the Division Budget Officer for other Cabinet areas. 

Please note the State Board policy states the deadline to move expenses onto State accounts is April 30th of each year. Anything after would require approval by the President with appropriate supporting justification and would need to be reported in an annual summary to the Board of Regents. (Handbook - Title 4, Chapter 9, Section 2. Financial Policies)

Graduate Salaries

State Graduate Salaries are administered through the Graduate College account titled Graduate Assistants; also the UNLV Financial Aid Office records some graduate assistant stipend expenses to the state scholarship accounts. Requests to use departmental state funds to cover graduate assistant stipends should be coordinated through the Graduate College.

Travel

Out-of-State Travel with State Funds:

  • Departments may now use state funds for out of state travel. Foreign travel reimbursements will be reviewed on a case by case basis at this time. Please refer to Controller's Office website for a more complete guide on travel policies.
  • Unallowable State Activity

  • Hosting
  • Some operations expenses are also unallowable:
    • There is no single exhaustive list of acceptable uses of state funds, the state administrative manual gives some general guidelines, but judgment is required.
    • Bottled water, meals, prizes & awards, and new employee moving stipends (FIE) are the more common transactions that should not be charged to state funds.
    • Account managers are responsible for appropriate use of university funds, all of which are public funds whether they are state appropriated or not.

Unallowable State Activity

  • Hosting: Object Code 25
  • Some operations expenses are also unallowable:
    • There is no single exhaustive list of acceptable uses of state funds, the state administrative manual gives some general guidelines, but judgment is required.
    • Bottled water, hosting, prizes & awards, and new employee moving stipends (FIE) are the more common transactions that should not be charged to state funds.
    • Account managers are responsible for appropriate use of university funds, all of which are public funds whether they are state appropriated or not.

Self Supporting Budgets

After the annual budget has been approved, it may be necessary to make changes to the Expense Budget. When this involves an exchange from one expense ledger to another, without increasing the total budget amount, a Budget Adjustment / Budget Amendment can be submitted to reallocate Uncommitted Balances.

Budget Adjustment / Budget Amendment should not be submitted for the Revenue Budget. The Revenue Budget is changed only if the total revenue projections for the account have increased and if the additional revenue will be spent in the current fiscal year. In this situation, the total budget will need to be increased through a Budget Revision.

Account Management and Budget Adjustments

  • Account Managers have a responsibility to monitor their accounts on an ongoing basis during the year to ensure that the account maintains a positive cash balance.
  • Account Managers should also track commitments made against accounts to ensure that the uncommitted balance is sufficient to cover pending transactions, including PCard purchases, and journals, etc.
  • Accounts cannot operate on a negative cash basis. The budget is established based on a projected revenue amount but if the expected revenue is not collected during the year then the planned expenditures must be adjusted in line with the actual revenue available.
  • Budgeted Accounts will allow expenditures to post up to the amount of the budget for each line but cash balances must also be taken into account, because if there is insufficient cash to cover the budget amounts then the account could become cash negative, which would require immediate corrective action.
  • If the revenue projection is significantly reduced, the expense budget lines can be reduced to avoid over commitment by moving allocation to the Reserves line through a budget adjustment.
  • If an override causes a negative budget line, a budget adjustment should be requested to restore a positive balance on the budget line.
  • Before sending a Voluntary Transfer Out to the Controller’s Office, check the account to determine if there are sufficient funds available in the VT Out line to allow the transaction to post.
  • Unbudgeted accounts operate on a Cash Basis, not a Budgeted Basis. If an override occurs, such as for wages or Pcard, allowing expenditures in excess of the available cash to post to the account, this must be corrected immediately, either by transferring additional funds to the account or by reassigning expenses from the account. Transfers In are unallowable on restricted accounts and for certain programs so a reassignment of expenses may be the only option in some cases.

How to Submit a Budget Adjustment Request

  1. Line out the reallocations by ledger and amount, which must balance to zero.
  2. Include an explanation of why uncommitted balances are available and what they will be used for when reallocated.
  3. When reallocating to a salary line, related fringe must also be reallocated.
  4. If moving funds from reserves, verify that there will be sufficient revenue to cover the expenses.
  5. Email the adjustment request to the Budget Analyst for your Department, and CC the Worktag Owner.
  6. As another option, take the Budget Amendment training provided by Financial Planning, Budget & Analysis and learn how to enter your own Budget Amendments!

Ledger Restrictions and Guidelines for Budget Adjustments

  • VT-Out Decrease: When the VT Out budget is established, the transfer out amount is part of the revenue budget for the receiving accounts. Reducing the VT Out budget reduces the revenue for the receiving accounts so the Account Manager for the receiving account must confirm that their account will have sufficient revenue to cover expenses without the transfer.
  • VT-Out Increase Include the account number of the receiving account and details of what activity the transfer will fund.
  • Salary or Hourly Pay Increase or Decrease: Calculate the related fringe using the current rates, available in the New Budget Form, and include Fringe amounts with the salary adjustment.
  • Professional or Classified Salary Decrease: The budget for Professional and Classified budgets are tied to position numbers. Identify why there is funding available to reallocate and whether it is one time, such as due to vacancies, or permanent, such as position elimination or base salary reduction.
  • Professional or Classified Salary Increase: Identify the position number and reason for increase; higher base salary for search, special pay or stipend, etc. If a new position is to be created refer to the New Position Request procedure.

Account, Revenue, or Expense Restrictions and Budget Adjustments

Restricted Accounts

​Cash transfers into or from gift and endowment accounts are not prohibited, but generally should be avoided. There may be unique situations where a cash transfer is needed, and those can be evaluated on a case by case basis.

Unbudgeted Accounts and Payroll Lines

Payroll activity for FTE'ed employees must be processed through budgeted accounts for accountability. Professional Salaries (non-LOA) and Classified Salaries cannot be set up on unbudgeted accounts. If payroll activity needs to be funded from unbudgeted funds, a budgeted account should be identified for the expense and revenue can be moved from the unbudgeted account to cover the payroll. Wages lines may be set up on unbudgeted accounts if there are no budgeted accounts available.

Student Fee Revenue

Student Fees should only be used to support the instructional program as outlined in the proposal to the Board of Regents for approval of the fee. Programmatic hosting that is integral to the student program is allowable, such as student orientation or graduation events but general departmental hosting is unallowable.

Special Course Fees

These fees can only be used for the designated purpose identified in the proposal to the Board of Regents for approval of the fees. Only the ledgers for the costs specified can be established on these accounts. Any residual on these accounts cannot be used for any other purpose so a VT Out line cannot be budget. If the residual balance is significant, the fee should be reviewed to determine if the amount should be reduced or eliminated.

Scholarship Activity

All Scholarship activity must adhere to financial aid guidelines and must be administered through the department of Student Financial Services. Scholarships budgets can only be set up on accounts managed by the department of Student Financial Services, under Function FN80.

Athletic Scholarship activity is administered by the Athletics department.

Recharge Accounts

Recharge accounts are funded by charging other University accounts for the service provided. The rate charged is subject to review and oversight through the Controller’s Office to ensure that the departments only pay for the costs related to providing the service and not for additional department costs unrelated to the recharge service. Recharge accounts should not have Transfers Out to fund unrelated activity and cannot use recharge funds to pay for hosting.

Agency Accounts

Fund FD901 – these accounts are set up to accommodate non-UNLV entities that need to use UNLV services for their activities, such as professional associations or student societies that need to pay for in house mail costs or telephone lines. These accounts must be standalone and UNLV funds cannot be transferred into them and they cannot be used to pay for UNLV payroll. Typically they only have Operations and Other Revenue.