Article VI - Expenditures - Procedures
All authorized expenditures must be made by check or electronic funds transfer. See Section 9 of this article for further information regarding electronic transfers. Except for the limited exceptions set forth in Article II, Section 4, no cash payments shall be expended for any purpose under any circumstances. Cash withdrawals from affiliate bank accounts are strictly prohibited.
All checks drawn on any of the union’s accounts must be signed by two officers (usually the President and Secretary-Treasurer), as authorized by the constitution of the affiliate. The use of a substitute officer is permissible when one of the primary signatory officers is temporarily unavailable, providing the designation of the substitute officer has been approved in advance by the officer and by the Executive Board of the affiliate, documented in the minutes, and provided the constitution of the affiliate permits such substitute signatures.
Under no circumstances may any officer or authorized substitute sign any check before the date, the name of the payee, and the amount have been entered on the check. No check may be pre-signed.
Rubber stamps shall not be used for check-signing purposes.
Use of a check-signing machine and electronic signature is permitted (for large affiliates only), provided the signature plates are adequately secured and the electronic signatures are protected by password or manual key access. Signatories should review all checks and supporting documentation for checks signed in such a manner.
At the time a check is issued, the date, amount, payee, and purpose of the check must be entered on the check stub and in the check register. The same information must be entered in the Cash Book or automated accounting system. Before signing checks, officers should verify that adequate documentation exists and that the expenditure has proper authorization and a proper union purpose.
Checks may not be made out to “cash.” Checks must be made payable to either an individual, who is responsible for providing a complete and proper accounting as to how those funds were spent, or to a vendor, who must submit receipts, invoices or other appropriate documentation. Checks used to replenish any petty cash fund must be made payable to the individual who is the custodian of petty cash, not to “cash.”
Payments shall be made from original documents rather than a copy or facsimile. In paying any bill, the check number, the date, and the amount of the check should be written on the face of the bill, which shall then be filed and retained in the affiliate’s records. This will safeguard against double payments.
Electronic transactions (e.g., payroll transfers, Electronic Funds Transfers (EFTs), IRS wire transfers), pensions and 401K wire transfers, even routine transfers within the same institution, must be authorized by a document signed by the authorized signatories of the accounts involved. Additionally, all electronic transactions must be properly recorded in the appropriate journals.
Bank Debit Cards, Check Cards and/or Automated Teller Machine (ATM) Cards may not be used for expenditures or withdrawals under any circumstance. Any such cards issued by a bank must be returned to the bank, with notice that no such cards are to be issued in the future. Use of these cards for expenditures or withdrawals is prohibited because they circumvent the requirement that two officers sign all disbursement checks, and because these cards do not provide a verifiable audit trail.
AFSCME strongly recommends against the use of union-owed credit cards as they circumvent the requirement that two officers sign all disbursement checks.