An undisclosed number of University of Miami employees have been terminated due to abusing their university “P-Cards” and may face criminal prosecution, according to an internal email obtained by The Miami Hurricane and email correspondence with the university’s chief financial officer (CFO).
Joe Natoli, UM’s CFO and vice president for business and finance, sent out the internal email. The message says that “several” employees faced punishment for P-Card, or Purchasing Card, “misuse and/or signatures forged on monthly statements.” It continues to say that the university has a zero-tolerance policy for misuse and that in some cases criminal charges will be pursued.
Natoli said that employee names, positions, and the number of employees dismissed have not been disclosed due to policy and the possibility of criminal prosecution,
P-Cards are issued by the University in order to “allow departments more control over routine, small-dollar purchases,” according to the online P-Card guide. This guide provides examples of appropriate P-Card purchases, including tools and hardware, books, computer software and hardware, meeting amenities, flowers and office equipment. P-Cards are issued to individuals as well as to departments. Individual P-Cards are limited to $2,000 per transaction and $10,000 for each billing cycle, while departmental cards are limited to $2,499 per transaction and $20,000 for each billing cycle.
Natoli said that a total 850 P-Cards have been issued to staff.
He also said that cardholders are obligated to attach itemized receipts to monthly statements as well as a business purpose explanation for each transaction. These statements must be submitted to the Purchasing Card office within 15 days, after which statements are filed.
The online P-Card guide may be found at miami.edu/P-Card.
Nate Harris may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.