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Policy No: 2085
Responsible Office: Business Office
Last Review Date: 02/21/2022
Next Required Review: 02/21/2027

Cash Collection of University Funds

1. Purpose

The collection and control of University cash and cash equivalents at the University of South Alabama are very important functions. As the University’s primary cash handling agents, the University Business Office and the University Office of Student Accounting provide guidance to the University campus community who need to engage in cash collection, e-commerce or stand-alone merchant terminal card processing. The responsibilities for cash collection, engaging in e-commerce and/or stand-alone merchant terminal card activities are explained in this policy.

Realizing the collection of cash is decentralized at the University of South Alabama, the purpose of this policy is to provide guidelines and specific controls to the University community with respect to the handling, receiving, and depositing of University campus funds.

Acceptable forms of payment are as follows:

• Schools/Colleges/Division Deposits – Currency, checks, money orders; MasterCard, VISA, Discover and AMEX; Wire Transfers; ACH; 
• E-Market Sites – MasterCard, VISA, Discover and AMEX; ACH;
• Merchant Accounts (Stand-alone Merchant Terminals) – MasterCard, VISA, Discover and AMEX;
• Student Payments – Currency, checks, money orders; MasterCard, VISA, Discover and AMEX; Wire Transfers, ACH.

2. Applicability

This policy applies to any member of the University community and/or University affiliate who has a fiduciary responsibility for any part of the collection and handling of the University’s cash assets, which includes but is not limited to organizations or affiliates that are raising or collecting moneys for or under the name of the University. Any moneys collected or received by the University community and/or University affiliates must comply with this policy.

3. Definitions


4. Policy Guidelines

Standard Cash and Cash Equivalents Controls: 

As the University of South Alabama has decentralized cash collections, individual responsibility and accountability should always exist in handling University cash and cash equivalents. Specific person(s) should be delegated the authority to receive cash by their supervisor and/or department heads. Cash and cash equivalents should be deposited into University established accounts in a timely manner through the Office of Student Accounting and an accounting record should be established in the general ledger within a business day of the cash being deposited. Departmental deposit forms can be found on the Office of Student Accounting website at:

4.1  Deposits should be made daily to maximize cash flow and safeguard assets unless prior approval has been granted to the department by the Business Office or the Office of Student Accounting.

4.2  All collections should be deposited intact. No expenditures should ever be made from a collection. Never net or adjust a cash amount collected.

4.3  All cash transactions must be established through proper documentation. All cash should be recorded and documented immediately upon receipt. Checks should be made payable to the University of South Alabama.

4.4  Cash funds must be properly balanced and reconciled. Cash handling units must maintain written cash balancing procedures. Each cashier or cash handler should balance their business at the end of their shift and prepare the appropriate deposit form and deliver to the Office of Student Accounting, if applicable.

4.5  Cash handlers must operate in a secure environment at all times. Access to cash should be restricted at all times to the person accountable for the funds. Any loss or misappropriation of University funds are subject to personal reimbursement including and up to termination and criminal prosecution.

4.6  Any cash handling area requesting to accept, process, transmit, store, dispose, or have access to cardholder data (i.e. take payment by credit cards) must be certified as a PCI compliant merchant by the Office of the University Treasurer and the method of processing credit transactions. This certification will include, but is not limited to, the merchant location becoming PCI compliant and adhering to the requirements of the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard as described in USA’s PCI Policy which can be found in the University of South Alabama Policy Library at: Payment Card Industry (PCI) General Merchant.  In addition, the secure handling of charge card numbers, data collection, system security, physical security, disaster recovery, reporting, reconciliation, privacy policies and continuing audit results is required.

4.7  To accommodate University customers, the Office of Student Accounting may authorize and delegate petty cash collection and distribution to University departments. The oversight of the petty cash process is maintained and handled by the Office of Student Accounting. A specific Petty Cash policy is maintained by the Office of Student Accounting and can be found in the University Policy Library at: Petty Cash

4.8  Depositing University cash and cash equivalents into unauthorized accounts is strictly prohibited. The Vice President for Finance & Administration and the University Treasurer are the only University officials who can authorize opening University accounts. No member of the University community or member of any University affiliate should ever deposit any University funds through non-University accounts. The deposit of any University funds into personal accounts is expressly prohibited.

4.9  Registered Student Organizations should follow this policy along with all policies and procedures that are set forth in the student handbook, The Lowdown – University of South Alabama.

4.10  The use of electronic payment platforms (i.e. - Paypal, Venmo, Cash App, etc.) is not authorized by the University. If electronic collection options are needed, please contact the Office of Student Accounting for e-commerce site options or for the use of portable merchant terminals.

5. Procedures


6. Enforcement

Historical practices shall not constitute justification for deviation from these guidelines. The material contained in this document supersedes any previous policies and procedures followed within the University and/or within Schools/Colleges/Divisions regarding the handling of University campus funds. The University Associate Vice President, Finance & Administration, Controller and/or the University Treasurer reserves the right to make interpretations and exceptions to the policies contained in this document.

7. Related Documents

7.1  Departmental Deposit Forms

7.2  Payment Card Industry (PCI) General Merchant (policies)

7.3  Cardholder Data Environment (policy)

7.4  Petty Cash Policy