Correcting Budget Availability ("NSF") Conditions for Grant, Contract, and Donation Funds
RELATED POLICY STATEMENT(S):
July 1, 1993
Since the departments have primary responsibility for ensuring that sufficient budget exists to cover expenses, this procedure provides general guidance on resolving problems when insufficient budget exists to process an invoice, requisition, or journal voucher.
The lack of sufficient budgeted funds to cover an expense (invoice, journal entry or requisition) is typically referred to as a lack of "budget availability" or as an "NSF" (insufficient funds) condition. This situation should be detected by the department itself although it may be brought to the attention of the department by the Controller's Office when the transaction is being processed on the financial system. Checking for budget availability before submitting a pay request, purchase requisition or journal voucher can usually eliminate most of the situations where an NSF condition might subsequently arise. The Grants Financial Analyst will contact the department to discuss the situation and possible corrective actions.
As suggestions for resolving NSF conditions before contacting the Controller's Office, department personnel should consider taking the following steps:
- Review existing encumbrances to determine if all encumbered items are needed. If not, work with the Purchasing Department to liquidate or decrease outstanding encumbrances, thereby freeing up the budget to cover the current expense.
- Determine if an alternative fund and organization that has available budgeted funds can appropriately be charged for the expense.
If these alternative actions are not sufficient to clear the budget availability issue, the department should contact the Grants and Contracts Accountant in the Controller's Office to pursue other solutions.