||This bulletin describes the Quick Pay Refund process and explains related procedures and internal control requirements. Agencies interested in using the Quick Pay Refund process should complete the attached application and return it to:
Bureau of State Expenditures
NYS Comptroller's Office
Albany, NY 12236
FAX (518) 473-3380
This process is designed to increase efficiency in processing refunds which do not exceed agency dollar limits, to be established by OSC, while maintaining an effective OSC pre-audit of these payments.
Agencies will use the Quick Pay Entry and Correct conversations found on Menu 27 to enter refund data in the Central Accounting System (CAS). Agencies will also use the Quick Pay Certification conversation provided for online certification of Quick Pay batches by finance officers/designees. The Quick Pay conversations for refunds have nine refund related data fields not included on other vouchers. The data to be entered into these fields will be defined by Agency Audit team and provided to agencies accepted for participation. With this additional refund data on the CAS, OSC will pre-audit the 'electronic refund request' and issue a check as early as two days after certification. Batches of paper vouchers and documentation should not be submitted to OSC. Agencies will reduce mail costs; OSC will reduce handling and storage costs.
OSC will conduct post audits of the Quick Pay Refund process to ensure agency compliance with internal control and record retention requirements.
Agencies are required to submit an application to be eligible to use the Quick Pay Refund process. Refund types noted by the agency on the application will be reviewed by the OSC Risk Assessment Team. Upon completion of the review, a dollar limit and specific procedures will be established for the approved refund types. The OSC Audit Unit will work with the agency contact person to develop and implement the procedures necessary to utilize the Quick Pay system for refunds.
||The Quick Pay Refund process requires an online certification by a finance officer, or designee, for each batch of vouchers, including those which are bulkloaded to the CAS. The certification is performed using the Quick Pay Certification conversation found on Menu 28. The finance officer, or designee, is assigned a Certification Operator ID to access this conversation. These certifiers must be authorized to sign vouchers, in accordance with Section 110 of the State Finance Law, and must be on file with OSC Knowledge Management Team. Any person who has a Certification Operator ID cannot also perform Quick Pay entry. Agencies are responsible for requesting Operator ID's which ensure this separation of duties.
Note: The online certification is the legal equivalent of a written certification and the identifying information for the certifier of each batch will be retained in OSC automated files for historical reference.
The certifier can review online any or all documents in a batch and can reject vouchers when necessary. The certifier cannot change any information on the vouchers. The reject and resubmittal process available for other Quick Pay batches is also available for Quick Pay Refund batches. This process has been changed to allow a batch to be resubmitted only once. If a certifier attempts to resubmit the same batch more than once, error message 043-INV BTCH NO FOR RESUBMIT will be issued and the voucher will need to be rejected and re-entered in a new batch. This change affects all Quick Pay batches.
OSC Audit Team may have only one day to audit Quick Pay Refunds before the scheduled payment date. Therefore, it is imperative that when an auditor calls to request information on a Quick Pay Refund, agencies must respond that same day. Otherwise, the auditors will be forced to reject the document containing the refund request, requiring the agency to re-enter the document.
Using statistical sampling techniques, OSC auditors will periodically require agencies to submit supporting documentation for selected Quick Pay Refunds as an indication of adequate internal controls and document retention. Agencies must provide original documentation on request. Documentation will be returned to agencies for retention. Any indication of lack of proper internal controls will result in the agency's exclusion from the Quick Pay Refund process.
||Section 3.0250 of the Controls and Special Procedures Manual explains internal controls required for processing payments. Review these controls and take steps to ensure they apply to payments made under the Quick Pay Refund process, as well as the regular refund process.
Since the Quick Pay Refund process requires no paper to be sent to OSC, the following internal control points deserve special attention from agencies.
- Review the daily Payee List (VOU065) to verify that only authorized payments have been processed.
- Develop effective audit trails to source documents for Quick Pay Refunds. Questions from OSC pre-auditors will require same-day responses from agencies. Source documents will be required by OSC for post-audit. (Agencies should retain records relating to Quick Pay Refunds in accordance with record retention schedules approved by the State Archives and Records Administration.)
- Retain Certification BCLs for a minimum of 3 years. These provide a hard-copy record of the name and operator ID of the agency certifier. This information will be retained on magnetic media by OSC.
- Adhere to all controls for terminal and password security, as explained in "Policies and Procedures for Remote Agencies" (Security Series Number 6). This Series is mailed to Agency Security Coordinators. Agency finance officers are responsible for ensuring that no employee can perform both entry/correct and certification of Quick Pay Refunds.
||Direct questions on this bulletin to OSC's State Expenditures Help Desk (518) 474-4868.