The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com
Wenesday, March 28, 2007 - 7A
From page IA
the processes for issuing and moni-
toring the cards is manual and time
But since December the Univer-
sity has been using data mining
software to monitor the 6,000 pur-
chasing cards in circulation. The
software makes it easier to review
purchases and to ensure that
they comply with University poli-
cies, said Carol Senneff, executive
director of the Office of University
The new review system makes it
easier to view trends in charges and
to identify unusual charges, Sen-
The audit also criticized the way
that purchasing cards are issued.
The audit said the people who are
responsible for granting purchasing
cards to employees - often depart-
ment supervisors - are the greatest
weakness in the system.
In the future, cardholders who
violate University guidelines, along
with the supervisor who approved
their account, will be held respon-
sible. Both will be required to
complete an online course and test
about the card guidelines, and if
the violations persist, the supervi-
sor could have their ability to issue
The University will also conduct
complete audits of new cardhold-
ers' accounts to make sure the card-
holder is abiding by the guidelines
for the card's use.
The audit also raised questions
about the inconsistency of monthly
credit limits for individual cards.
Every purchasing card is automati-
cally given an adjustable $10,000
credit limit, but more than100cards
have limits of $50,000 to $250,000.
Another 100 cards haven't been
used in over a year.
Auditors recommended that the
dormant cards and those with high
credit limits be reviewed and that
the standard limit on cards should
be lowered to about the $1,000
charged on the average card each
The University doesn't place
limits on the number of purchas-
ing cards given out or criteria for
what type of employee is eligible to
receive one, and the audit doesn't
propose that it adopt any.
The audit urges that depart-
ments move to limit the pur-
chasing cards they issue to those
employees with significant pur-
chasing responsibilities. The vast
majority of cardholders use them
sparingly. About 5,000 of the
6,000 cardholders only account-
ed for 1/3 of the total purchasing
card purchases in 2006, while
the remaining 1,000 cardhold-
ers accounted for the remainder
- suggesting that many employ-
ees have cards unnecessarily. The
audit says having unnecessary
cards in the system increases the
risk of overlooking abuse of the
program by individuals.
Last year, another audit and
investigation of one department
found an employee had used her
purchasing card to embezzled
$86,70 from the University in 2004
and 2005, The Ann Arbor News
reported on Saturday.
Another investigation of embez-
zlement began Thursday after
the Department of Public Safe-
ty received a report that a male
employee in Wyly Hall charged
$4,000 of personal purchases to his
Senneff said the audit was done
in order to look for ways to improve
an inefficient system, not to uncov-
er cases of fraud.
The changes made to the pur-
chasing card reviewsystem and the
University community's increased
awareness of the program's policies
has led to several cards being deac-
tivated or having their maximum
limits lowered, said Peggy Norgren,
the University's associate vice pres-
ident for finance.
the michigan daily
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For Wednesday, March 28, 2007
(March 21to April 19)
You're wondering what it is you
should be doing. If you're under 80,
you're wondering what you should be
when you grow up.
(April 20to May 20)
This is definitely the time to secure a
solid home base for yourself. You need
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(May 21to June 20)
You have to go with the flow now.
Life is ina state of flux. Job changes and
residential moves make everything
(June 21to July 22)
It's fitting that at a time when you
have opportunities to improve your job,
you're giving such serious thought to
how you want to earn a living.
(July 23 to Aug. 22)
You are actually at the beginning of a
major 30-year learning cycle. In the next
seven years, you're going to reinvent
(Aug. 23 to Sept. 22)
Before you bring home a new sofa,
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Clear the decks to make room for some-
(Sept. 23 to Oct. 22)
You're often busy trying to please oth-
ers. Now your challenge is to learn how
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(Oct. 23 to Nov. 21)
You have a lot of responsibilities right
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This is a time of preparation. Get your
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You've had to get along with less sup-
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(Jan. 20 to Feb. 18)
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(Feb. 19to March 20)
You're doing a lot behind the scenes
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'2007 King Features Syndicate, Inc.