Cell Phone and Data Plan Procedures
I. Frequent Use of Cell Phones for Business Purposes
A. Establishment and Payment of Allowance
If a University employee's job duties include the frequent need for a cell phone or Internet access off campus, then the employee is eligible for an allowance to cover cell phone/data plan expenses. An allowance may be requested using the Allowance Request Form. The request may be made any time during the fiscal year.
This allowance does not constitute an increase to base pay, and will not be included in the calculation of percentage increases to base pay due to annual raises, job upgrades, etc.
B. Determination of Dollar Amount of Allowance
The dollar amount of the cell phone/data plan allowance should cover the employee's projected business-related expenses. These expenses are the cost of basic equipment and the cost of the employee's monthly cell phone/data plan. The plan chosen should be the least expensive that provides adequate business-related services. Upgrades to basic equipment (special cosmetic or technical features, etc.) or expected cell phone/data plan use unrelated to business cannot be considered. Determination of the dollar amount of the allowance is made at the department level, but must be within the guidelines and dollar limits established under the Cell Phone/Data Plan Allowance policy.
C. Use of Phone
The employee must retain an active cell phone/data plan contract as long as an allowance is in place. Because the cell phone equipment is owned personally by the employee, and the allowance provided is taxable income, the employee may use the phone/data plan for both business and personal purposes, as needed. The employee may, at his or her own expense, add extra services or equipment features, as desired.
Use of the phone/data plan in any manner contrary to local, state, or federal laws will constitute misuse and will result in immediate termination of the cell phone/data plan allowance.
D. Documentation and Review Requirements
The Allowance Request Form and a copy of the employee's most recent cell phone/data plan invoice must be submitted to Purchasing Services to initiate an allowance.
The Dean or Division Director is responsible for an annual review of employee business-related cell-phone/data plan use to determine if an existing allowance should be continued, changed, or discontinued. The Allowance Change Request Formshould be used to make the annual review. Accounts Payable should be notified immediately when an employee with an allowance leaves the University.
E. Fees for Contract Changes or CancellationsEmployees are responsible for any and all fees associated with a change or cancellation of their cell phone/data plan contract.
II. Infrequent Use of Cell Phones for Business Purposes
If a University employee's job duties do not include the frequent need for a cell phone, the employee is not eligible for an allowance. Such employees may request reimbursement for the actual extra expenses of business cell phone calls (but reimbursement for per-minute "air time" charges is limited to the total overage charge shown on the invoice, i.e., expenses for minutes included in the plan will not be reimbursed). The individual should make personal payment to the provider, and then should submit a request for reimbursement.