Year-End Deficits and Division Carry Forwards

Type of Policy: 
Administrative
Last Revised: 
April 2015
Review Date: 
April 2018
Policy Owner: 
Institute Budget, Planning and Administration
Contact Name: 
Lisa Godfrey
Contact Title: 
Dir-Institute & Capital Plan Budget Mgt
Contact Email: 
lisa.godfrey@business.gatech.edu
Reason for Policy: 

This policy establishes procedures for handling year-end deficits or surpluses incurred by Georgia Tech divisions.  The policy pertains to Resident Instruction General Operations funds budgeted in the following fund numbers: 10010 (State Appropriations), 10015 (Indirect Cost Recovery), 10500 (Tuition), and 10600 (Other General).

Policy Statement: 

General Operations Funds
At the beginning of each fiscal year, an expense budget is established for General Operations funded projects. These budgets are funded by the following revenue streams: State Appropriations, Indirect Cost Recoveries, Tuition, and Other General. During the year the Institute may allocate additional budget authority to units, depending on need and funding availability. At year end budgets should equal expenditures plus encumbrances (total expenses). When a college or other division’s spending exceeds or is less than the final amended budget, either an adjustment must be made to balance the total Institute budget or a documented carry forward plan must be in place.

Departmental Sales Funds
Please refer to the DSS policy for DSS carry forward requirements and request forms;
http://www.policylibrary.gatech.edu/business-finance/departmental-sales-and-services-dss

Operating Deficits
Audit guidelines state that Institutions shall not overspend their Board of Regents approved budget authority, nor will expenses exceed revenues. When budgets are overspent or expenses exceed revenues, an operating deficit is created. Before the fiscal year can be closed, the operating deficits must be corrected. To help facilitate more effective management of the Institute’s budget as a whole, divisions will be responsible for any year end deficits that are not previously approved by the administration.

Surplus
A division may request the return of a surplus funds at year-end for use in the next fiscal year, often referred to as a “carry forward of funds.” To meet the needs of the division, the Office of Institute Budget Planning and Administration (“Budget Office”) must manage the carry forward in the year of close and in the following year as well. Because of the restrictive state rules governing carrying forward funds and year-end closing, surplus/carry forward arrangements must be documented and reviewed to ensure proper accounting and budgeting methods have been followed. This policy establishes carry forward guidelines to ensure that all requirements are met.

Procedures: 

Rules and Guidelines
Division Deficits
If, during the fiscal year, a division becomes aware of a deficit situation, the Budget Office should be notified by the division head or chief division budget director as soon as possible. The Executive Director, Institute Budget Planning and Administration will inform the administration of the situation. In some cases, operating deficits may be allowed by the administration due to special circumstances. After the fiscal year closes, the Budget Office will conduct an analysis of budget to actual total expenses. If any division has an unapproved net operating deficit, the division’s current fiscal year budget will be reduced on a one-time basis by the year-end deficit amount in the first budget amendment or an approved re-payment plan will be established.

Division Carry Forwards
If a surplus or excess budget is anticipated for year end, and the college or other division would like those funds returned in the next fiscal year, complete the online request form (http://forms.budgets.gatech.edu/view.php?id=14652) before April 15. These will be reviewed by the Executive Director, Institute Budget Planning and Administration, and where appropriate, by executive staff, with a final decision to be communicated to the division by May 15. Requests submitted by individual departments, programs, centers, or schools will not be accepted except for tuition differential or studies abroad 60/40 split of summer semester revenues. In the request, the division should explain:

  • the explanation of the source of funding
  • the projected amount to be carried forward
  • an explanation of why the funds will be available, and
  • the purpose for which those funds will be used in the next fiscal year.

If, prior to June 1st, the division’s estimate of the year-end surplus changes, the Budget Office should be notified. The division should keep in mind that expenses funded from carry forward funds are subject to audit. Documentation should be kept to verify that purchases were in accordance with the purpose originally stated.

Approval is subject to the Institute’s generation of an overall surplus of at least the approved amount. These are one-time funds that will not be built into the unit’s permanent base budget. If the unit’s net year-end balance for General Operations is less than the amount requested, only the year end-balance may be budgeted in the upcoming fiscal year. If the net year-end balance exceeds the amount requested, the maximum amount approved per the request may be budgeted in the upcoming fiscal year. The Budget Office will verify final carry-forward amounts with the units in the first budget amendment of the new fiscal year.

Policy History: 
Revision DateAuthorDescription
April 2015Budget OfficeClarification of language/added link to online form
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