BPFP Accounting Practices (11/08)


Receipts, Invoices, Signatures
A) Requests for reimbursement (after someone pays for supplies or materials on behalf of the affiliate) are to be submitted to the affiliate’s treasurer accompanied by original receipts, along with a description of the nature or purpose of the expenditure signed by the submitter. Rare exceptions to the receipt rule for minor amounts will be tolerated; frequent or large exceptions will result in no reimbursement for the receipt-less items. One routine exception is snacks for work parties if the requested amount is less than $20. These require only the number of people and date of the work party.

B) Requests for payment to a third party are to be submitted to the affiliate’s treasurer and must be accompanied by an invoice or bill from the third party signed by someone who has knowledge of the expense. That signature, attesting to the reason and amount, must appear on the documents submitted to the treasurer.

In both cases, the affiliate’s treasurer will submit the receipts, invoices or bills to BPFP along with a Check Request form. The treasurer’s signature on the Check Request form always indicates that the submitted documents are reasonable, appropriate and not double billing; the person with direct knowledge of the specific purchase must sign the backup material.
Example of payment to a third party: An affiliate orders plants from a nursery where they have an account. Someone picks up the plants and an invoice verifying the pickup. That person submits the invoice, along with an indication of where the plants will be used, to the group’s treasurer. The treasurer verifies that the expense is legitimate and submits the invoice to BPFP along with a Check Request form. BPFP issues a check to the nursery.

==>No one can approve reimbursement to him- or herself. (This includes the group’s treasurer, who must have the Check Request approved by another member of the group.)

BPFP Accounting Practices
There shall be no changes made to a month’s transactions after the close of the month. Necessary corrections must be made as journal entries in the current month. Requests and reasons for corrections should be sent to the BPFP bookkeeper. The treasurer will review and approve them before they are made. The bookkeeper will attach a printout of the journal entry to the approved request and keep it in the file of journal entries.

Affiliate Financial Services
Generally BPFP does the banking for our affiliates; however, there may be good reason for an affiliate to do part or all of its own banking. If the BPFP treasurer agrees to the need for a separate account or debit/credit card, BPFP will be a signatory on that account and have electronic access to it. Rules for receipts are the same as when BPFP handles the banking. The BPFP treasurer is authorized to review the original receipts for expenses paid via an affiliate’s separate accounts or cards.

Financial Reporting to Affiliates
At their request, affiliates can routinely receive a monthly report detailing all transactions in the month and giving the end-of-month cash balance. Affiliates may also choose to receive a quarterly Profit & Loss statement for year-to-date. If you don’t understand a report or think there is a mistake contact the BPFP bookkeeper. Within a week (allowing for vacations) you should get a satisfactory resolution or be referred to the BPFP treasurer. If the treasurer does not resolve it within a week, you should be referred to another BPFP officer.

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