Office of Financial Affairs

Petty Cash


Utica University provides petty cash funds to expedite emergency or small non-routine purchases such as postage, office supplies, or other small items that cannot be purchased through standard purchasing procedures (see Purchasing and Accounts Payable policy). Petty cash may not be used to pay for wages, cash advances, loans, or cashing personal checks. University funds may not be used to make purchases for personal or private use.


This policy and the procedures associated with it apply to all Utica University employees, including student employees and contract employees using petty cash funds.


This policy is designed to ensure:
  • Appropriate stewardship of University assets

  • Integrity when acquiring goods and services

  • Accountability to funding sources

  • Fulfillment of University community needs in a timely, efficient, and properly controlled manner

  • Adherence to ethical business practices

  • Compliance with applicable laws


1. Establishment of Petty Cash Funds

To establish a petty cash fund a supervisor must make a written request to the Office of Purchasing and Accounts Payable specifying whether the request is for ongoing or temporary purposes, such as an event. The supervisor should also explain:
  • The purpose for which the petty cash fund is to be used

  • Why standard purchasing procedures are inadequate for that use

  • How the petty cash fund is going to be safeguarded

  • The amount being requested
Petty cash funds are to be kept in a locked petty cash box and placed in a safe location. Petty cash boxes are to be purchased through the department’s office supply account.

The petty cash fund will be removed from the office or department if the need for the fund ceases to exist or if the fund is handled improperly.

2. Method of Use
  • Each office or department must assign one authorized person to be responsible for handling the petty cash fund

  • The responsible person must pre-authorize any purchases using the petty cash fund. The individual making the purchase must provide a receipt, which must be initialed by the responsible person

  • At all times the cash on hand and the totals of the paid receipts must add up to the original amount of the fund

  • Petty cash funds are subject to unannounced audit at any time by a representative of the Division of Financial Affairs and Treasurer

  • If the petty cash fund is depleted, the person responsible for handling the petty cash fund must reconcile the receipts with the cash remaining before the fund can be replenished (see Petty Cash Reconciliation and Replenishment, below)

  • Petty cash funds must be reconciled at the end of each fiscal year (May 31) using the Petty Cash Reconciliation and Replenishment Form, which must be submitted to the Office of Purchasing and Accounts Payable no later than June 10
3. Petty Cash Reconciliation and Replenishment
  1. To reconcile and replenish the petty cash fund, complete the Petty Cash Reconciliation and Replenishment Form.

  2. Using Banner, submit a requisition for the amount to be replenished. An electronic version of the purchase order receiving copy will be forwarded to the requesting office or department for verification.

  3. Submit a copy of the Petty Cash Reconciliation and Replenishment Form with the signed receiving copy to the Office of Purchasing and Accounts Payable. Retain all receipts and the original Petty Cash and Petty Cash and Replenishment Form for the files.

  4. Once the request is processed, a check will be issued payable to the person for handling the petty cash fund.

It is the responsibility of all employees of Utica University to ensure appropriate stewardship of Utica University assets, to maintain integrity when acquiring goods and services, and to ensure accountability to funding sources.


Enforcement of Utica University policies is the responsibility of the office or offices listed in the “Resources/Questions” section of each policy. The responsible office will contact the appropriate authority regarding faculty or staff members, students, vendors, or visitors who violate policies.

Utica University acknowledges that University policies may not anticipate every possible issue that may arise. The University therefore reserves the right to make reasonable and relevant decisions regarding the enforcement of this policy. All such decisions must be approved by an officer of the University (i.e. president, vice president for academic affairs, or vice president for financial affairs).


For any questions or additional information, please contact the Office of Purchasing and Accounts Payable.

Please note that other Utica University policies may apply or be related to this policy. To search for related policies, use the Keyword Search function of the online policy manual.
Effective Date: 07/25/2007
Promulgation Date: 09/13/2007

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