3-2 Fiscal Management
Policy Type: Local
Responsible Office: Chief of Police, Virginia Commonwealth University Police Department
Initial Policy Approved: 11/10/2013
Current Revision Approved: 12/1/2016
The purpose of this directive is to establish fiscal guidelines and procedures for budgeting, accounting, and maintenance of all funds or accounts where department personnel are permitted to receive, maintain or disburse cash. Department personnel are frequently in the position of receiving, handling, and disbursing funds. When any department employee participates in such activity as a part of their employment with the department, it is critical that accountability be maintained for the receipt, maintenance, and/or disbursement of cash.
All employees are expected to fully comply with the guidelines and timelines set forth in this written directive. Failure to comply will result in appropriate corrective action. Responsibility rests with the division commander to ensure that any violations of policy are investigated and appropriate training, counseling and/or disciplinary action is initiated.
The Chief of Police is responsible for the fiscal management of the department.
- Fiscal management for the department shall be conducted in compliance with procedure and regulations established by the University and the Commonwealth of Virginia.
- The Chief will be personally involved in departmental financial management.
- The Director of Administration and Business Operations maintains delegated fiscal management responsibilities including the daily financial operations of the department.
- The Director will assign specified responsibilities within the Administrative Division for accounting, purchasing, reporting, and management of the department's personnel records and leave.
- The annual budget for the department is established by the University's Budget Office and coordinated with the Director.
- Division Commanders will prepare periodic reports to submit to the Chief and the Director identifying specific divisional needs which may require budgetary adjustments.
- The Director will have the responsibility to review the department's annual budget with the University’s Budget Office and to negotiate any necessary changes.
- The Director will coordinate the department’s requests for unavoidable cost increases, carry forward funds, and current funding for initiatives.
- The Director is responsible for maintaining records of all department financial transactions in compliance with university policies and procedures as outlined in the financial policies and procedures found at https://www.policy.vcu.edu/policies/finance.
- Budget and expenditure reports received from the University’s Banner Finance System will be reviewed monthly and reconciled quarterly by the Director. The Chief will review and approve the reconciliations.
- The reconciliations will include the following information for each account under VCUPD’s control:
- Current allocated budget for major object code divisions
- Total expenditures for the current fiscal year
- Projections for year and (fiscal) expenditures
- Projected surplus or deficit
- Explanations of budget variances
- The Director may delegate certain authority for bookkeeping, payroll record keeping and day to day accounting within the administrative division.
- The Director or the Chief will approve all expenditures to ensure the accuracy of receipts and expenditures made against these accounts.
- Necessary journal entries will be created by the fiscal technician and approved by the Director. The Budget Office or Financial Reporting staff will approve any entries created by the Director.
- All cash handled within the department must be properly received, safeguarded and disbursed according to the provisions set forth by VCU Treasury Services found at https://policy.vcu.edu/doctract/documentportal/08DA32A63EDBC6E94FF5EE7EB59717C7.
- The business office’s Personnel/Payroll Manager will prepare deposits for funds received for fingerprinting and security services. They will also prepare the appropriate invoices for external organizations and journal entries for internal departments utilizing security and patrol services.
- Departmental petty cash funds will be authorized, as needed, by the Director
- Petty cash custodians will be responsible for collecting, verifying and submitting to VCU Treasury Services all records concerning their petty cash receipts, disbursement and reconciliation
- Each custodian will abide by the policies governing petty cash found at https://policy.vcu.edu/doctract/documentportal/08DA32A740D31159D5FA3D7DCE5D5EBD.
- Custodians will reconcile their fund on a monthly basis and submit an annual reconciliation to Treasury Services. The Director will review and approve the reconciliations.
- Whenever possible, requests for petty cash outlays shall be made in advance to one of the petty cash custodians.
- A cash receipt of expenditure signed by the person requesting reimbursement must accompany all requests for cash reimbursement. All cash receipts will be signed and dated by the purchaser and reviewed by the petty cash custodian prior to reimbursement.
- The Property Manager will be responsible for the proper handling of any cash received by the department as found/recovered property or taken as evidence.
- Found property is recorded and stored in the safe for 120 days. If the owner is known, an attempt to contact the owner is made. If the owner does not claim their property within 120 days or the owner is unknown, the funds are deposited to the Asset Forfeiture Escrow fund (8-84500) for escheatment.
- For evidence cash, see below (Asset Forfeiture).
- The Chief of Police may designate one or more persons to be responsible for special cash accounts (charity fund raising, departmental activities, etc.). Strict accountability for these funds must be maintained, and reports on account status must be made to the Director or the Chief on a monthly basis.
- All division commanders will be responsible for monitoring any fiscal activities under their control. This internal self-evaluation will provide a more efficient and effective fiscal process. Division Commanders should make any suggestions for improvement in writing to the Chief. The structure of fiscal management within the department contains built in controls on fiscal matters in that no one person has absolute control of, or total responsibility for, any specific function.
- The Department of Assurance Services or the State Auditor of Public Accounts may perform audits when either deems necessary. All department personnel will provide any necessary assistance to these auditors.
- Other internal VCU departments with fiscal responsibility may also perform audits respective to their department roles (example: Treasury Services, Human Resources, Procurement).
- All department purchases must be approved by the Chief or the Director and made by the business office fiscal technician or a designated purchasing officer in accordance with VCU Procurement Policies and Procedures found at https://procurement.vcu.edu/policy-library/.
- The Property Manager has approval to purchase items up to $200 for acquiring limited vehicle maintenance, community service, and law enforcement supplies.
- Requests for uniform purchases must be approved by the respective Captain and submitted to the Property Manager, on the Uniform and Supply Request Form. Requests for supplies can be submitted to the fiscal technician, via email, or on the Uniform and Supply Request Form.
- Prior approval is granted to any department member authorized to operate a department owned motor vehicle to purchase gasoline, oil, car washes, etc., and emergency service for department vehicles only. During normal working hours, members should use state operated facilities for normal refueling and maintenance.
- Procurements under $10,000 generally do not require formal involvement by VCU Procurement; however, where practical, the Director, or designee, shall seek multiple price quotes to obtain goods and services at the lowest possible cost.
- Requisitions totaling over $10,000 must be submitted to VCU Procurement for handling.
- The Chief must approve all requisitions over $2,000 before being submitted for ordering and/or payment.
- Prior to submission to a higher or coordinating authority, the Chief must approve procurements requiring approval by the President, the Vice President for Administration, or their designee, regardless of amount.
- It is recognized that as a 24-hour operation, a police department may, on occasion, have a need for emergency procurement of goods and/or services, and it may not be possible to follow the established procedures. In these cases, the Chief or the Director must give, at the least, verbal authorization for procurement to the division commander or acting division commander.
- Establishment of vendor contracts shall be conducted in accordance to University Procurement policies and procedures. VCU Police Department personnel are not authorized to sign vendor contracts or agreements. All vendor contracts/agreements will be coordinated through VCU Procurement’s Contract Administrator.
- The Director and Procurement’s Contract Administrator shall monitor all maintenance and service agreements.
- Departmental purchase cards (p-cards) shall be utilized to the extent possible.
- Cardholders shall abide by the p-card policy and procedures found at https://procurement.vcu.edu/i-want-to/use-a-p-card/.
- The Fiscal Technician will be the designated p-card holder for the department’s E&G and local funds.
- The Property Manager will also be a designated p-card holder on the department’s E&G fund specifically for acquiring limited vehicle maintenance, community service, and law enforcement supplies.
- All p-card transactions will be reconciled by the card holders on a monthly basis and reviewed and approved by the Director.
- Appropriate journal entries will be keyed by the Fiscal Technician and approved by the Director to clear the undistributed p-card accounts on a monthly basis.
- All purchases, including any non-over-the-counter transactions made by the Property Manager, will be entered into eVA by the Fiscal Technician and reviewed and approved by the Director.
Inventory Control and Fixed Assets
- The Property Manager is responsible for the inventory control of all department property, equipment and other assets and will adhere to the university’s fixed asset policy and procedures found at https://policy.vcu.edu/doctract/documentportal/08DA32A740D2FA3A1E0A22CA3E434DB2.
- An inventory of fixed assets, department property, and equipment will be conducted annually under the Support Service Captain’s review. The Property Manager and the Property Technician will conduct the respective sections of the inventories.
- An annual audit of property will be conducted by the Captain, Property Manager, and one other individual not routinely connected with property control.
- Quarterly inspections will be conducted by the Captain with the Property Manager. These inspections will include random samples of each primary type of evidence and will include samples of recovered property.
- At least two unannounced inspections will be conducted by the Captain each year.
- Whenever the primary property manager is assigned and/or transferred from the property and evidence control function, an inventory of property is conducted jointly by the new property manager and the Captain.
- Inventories will be updated, as appropriate, throughout the year.
- The Property Manager will coordinate the disposition of evidence and recovered property to ensure proper retention procedures are followed.
- All destruction of property records will be in accordance with the department’s record retention policy.
Special Budget Considerations
The Director will maintain a working liaison with the department's assigned budget analyst in the University’s Budget Office. Any necessary budget adjustments (transfers, variances, and reallocation) will be discussed with and approved by the Budget Office.
In accordance with the Code of Virginia, the VCU Police will have directives and procedures to govern the use of the Asset Forfeiture Program. The Director should establish a professional working relationship with agencies such as Richmond Commonwealth Attorney’s Office (CA), and Department of Criminal Justice Services (DCJS) to enhance a positive outcome during the compliance stages of the program.
- The Director will be the coordinator of the Asset Forfeiture Program. It will be their responsibility to provide procedure information to the officers, submit proper forms and payment as applicable, follow-up as appropriate with either the officers or the courts regarding the status of civil cases, deposit funds to the correct Banner fund, and return funds as appropriate. The Director will assist with the delegation of financial resources obtained by the agency, making recommendations for expending the funds as appropriate.
- Pursuant to §19.2-386.22 of the Code of Virginia, it is VCUPD’s policy to mandate that seizures of assets can be made only if:
- There is a criminal arrest for drug law violations outlined in §18.2-248 or §18.2-248.1 of the Code of Virginia, and substantial connection can be made between the asset and illegal manufacture, sale, or distribution of a controlled substance as defined in §18.2-248 and §18.2-248.1 or is traceable to such exchange, or
- There is not a criminal arrest made for drug law violations as outlined §18.2-248 or §18.2-248.1 of the Code of Virginia, but there exists probable cause of such violation that an asset has a substantial connection to the illegal manufacture, sale or distribution of a controlled substance or is traceable to such an exchange as determined by law.
- There is a $200.00 minimum for all cash seizures.
- 19.2-386.22 of the Code of Virginia provides for lawful seizures and forfeiture by law enforcement officers of property:
- Used in “substantial connection with the illegal manufacture, sale or distribution of a controlled substance” in violation of §18.2-248 or §18.2-248.1, and
- Things of value that are furnished or intended to be furnished in exchange, and interest or profits derived from the investment of such money or property.
- Pursuant to the Code of Virginia, VCUPD’s policy mandates that seizures of assets other than cash can be made only with consensus of the Chief or the Assistant Chief of Operations:
- Vehicles knowingly used for the transportation of “any stolen goods”, “chattels”, or, “other property”, when of value over $200 or more, or any stolen property obtained as the result of a “robbery”, without the regard to the value of the property, shall be forfeited to the Commonwealth.
- Any vehicles knowingly used by the owner thereof or used by another with their knowledge of and during the commission of, or in attempt to commit a second offense or subsequent offense of:
- 18.2-346 - Being a prostitute or prostitution,
- 18.2-347 - Keeping or residing in or frequenting a bawdy place,
- 18.2-348 - Aiding prostitution or illicit sexual acts,
- 18.2-349 - Using a vehicle to promote prostitution or sexual acts,
- 18.2-355 - Taking, detaining, etc., person for prostitution, or consenting thereto,
- 18.2-356 - Receiving money for procuring a person, or
- 18.2-357 - Receiving money from earnings of a male or female prostitute.
- Pursuant to §4.1-339, search and seizure of conveyances or vehicles used in the transportation of alcohol. (Contact local ABC Agent prior to seizing vehicle.)
- Pursuant §46.2-867; regarding Drag Racing.
- Pursuant to §18.2-246.1 Virginia Comprehensive Money Laundering Act (1999, c.348) §18.2-246.2 Definitions, §18.2-246.3 Penalties, used in connection with money laundering, §18.2-246.5 forfeiture of business license or registration upon conviction of sale or distribution of imitation controlled substance.
- The CA’s Office must file civil forfeitures under these code sections within 90 days from the date of seizure.
- Procedures and Responsibilities for Seizing Officers
- Submit an Asset Seizure Report (DCJS Form 998) to the Director within 3 business days of the seizure. All items seized must be documented within the report. A copy of the incident report should be attached.
- If an arrest is made and a criminal case is pending in court and asset forfeiture action is not being taken against the property or asset, then the property or asset should be introduced as evidence at the trial so that it may be retained either by the court or released to the owner.
- The officer will collect all evidence pertaining to the seizure case; complete identification of suspects and participants is essential. Any and all records regarding financial issues, basically any items, which will prove both the criminal and forfeiture case, should be seized.
- NOTE: Photographs of evidence should be utilized to the extent possible and attached to the incident report in MobLan/RMS.
- The officer will conduct interviews to obtain statements from all participants. If other persons not present are identified as owners of the seized property, the officer will locate the persons and identify if they are in fact the owners of the same. The officer will utilize their trained investigative skills while conducting interviews.
- The officer will properly package and record any and all evidence in accordance to VCUPD’s Written Directive 7-3 Collection and Preservation of Evidence. It is the responsibility of the officer, not the Director or the Property Manager, to properly count and identify any and all currency.
- NOTE: See alternate procedures pertaining to large (>$5,000) cash counts.
- The officer will provide the Stipulation and Agreement form (VCUPD form #78) to the Commonwealth Attorney, to be utilized in the event the felony charge is reduced to a misdemeanor, community service, or dismissed. The use of this form will ensure forfeiture of the funds regardless of the criminal charge outcome.
- Federal Public Law 21 USC 881 permits forfeiture of money or property when it is used to facilitate a drug violation, a conveyance of illegal drugs, or traceable to an exchange of illegal drugs.
- To proceed under federal Law, the appropriate federal agency (FBI, DEA, and ATF) will be contacted regarding the seizure of money or property.
- Responsibilities of the Director
- The Director will be responsible for ensuring complete files and providing information regarding all forfeitures to appropriate state and federal agencies. For state forfeitures, the Director will be responsible for filing DCJS Form 998 within 21 days of seizure, Form 999 upon receipt of the court order, along with the supporting documentation and payment via revenue refund voucher, and the subsequent deposit of forfeited funds received from DCJS. For federal forfeitures, the Director will be responsible for filing Form DAG-71.
- The Director will be responsible for the safekeeping of the seized funds, which will be handled as follows:
- Upon processing the evidence received from the officer, the Property Manager will email the Director with case information regarding the cash or provide a copy of the officer’s cash count form and property’s evidence form. The Property Manager will record the evidence and place the cash in Property’s evidence room safe.
- The Director will email the officer and query the intent regarding the cash (filing for asset forfeiture or hold for other reasons). If the officer or CA’s office determines the cash is required as prima facie evidence, then the cash will remain in the safe until the court date. All other cash, including cash intended for asset forfeiture, is then deposited in the Asset Forfeiture Escrow fund (8-84500).
- Large cash deposits (estimated amounts over $5,000) may be taken to the VCU Treasurer’s Office for an exact accounting of the funds, within 24 hours of seizure (https://treasury.vcu.edu/banking/cashiering/cash-receipting/). The Chief and Director will make the final decision regarding whether the cash count occurs within the department or with the Cashier’s Office. If the Cashier’s Office is to be utilized, the Director or Property Manager, along with the seizing officer, will accompany the uncounted funds to ensure the chain of custody. Funds will be deposited into the Asset Forfeiture Escrow fund (8-84500).
- The Assistant Chief of Operations and/or the Director will provide training and assistance to department personnel to ensure the integrity of the Asset Forfeiture Program. They will make themselves available as needed for advice concerning seizure issues.
- The Assistant Chief of Operations and Director will keep abreast of legislation and changes in state and federal laws and procedures concerning asset forfeiture.
- The Director and the Property Office will be involved with the management and disposal of seized vehicles and property in accordance with provisions of federal, state, and local laws and ordinances.
- Investigations, which may lead to some type of seizure issue, will be conducted in accordance to the laws of the Commonwealth of Virginia and the federal government. The officer/ investigator may confer with the Assistant Chief of Operations and/or Director and the Commonwealth Attorney or US Attorney prior to any seizure actions.
- VCUPD will provide resource material regarding Asset Forfeiture. The DCJS Asset Forfeiture Manual is available in Patrol Operations, Investigative Division, Director’s office, and the Chief’s office for guidance. The manual is also available online at https://www.dcjs.virginia.gov/sites/dcjs.virginia.gov/files/publications/dcjs/forfeited-asset-sharing-program-manual.pdf
- The Director will be responsible for reconciling the Asset Forfeiture Banner Finance funds (5-35502, 5-35559 and 8-84500), completing the state and the federal Annual Compliance Reports pertaining to asset forfeiture, obtaining the appropriate signatures of the Chief and the Vice President for Administration, and filing the reports by the stated deadline.
- Responsibilities of the Property Manager
- Ensure that evidence is labeled and logged in Tracker and RMS.
- Ensure that evidence is stored in the applicable evidence room based on the type of evidence (guns, drugs, cash, other).
This policy supersedes the following archived policies:
11/10/2013 - 3-2 Fiscal Management