Latest update includes:

FY2015-04: Late Penalty Interest Rate
CTR Memo FY2015-04 has been posted to the CTR Web Portal. This memo advises departments as to the late penalty interest rate for July 1, 2014 – December 31, 2014.

FY2014-30: Annual FY2014 Capital (Fixed) Asset Inventory Review
CTR Memo FY2014-30 has been posted to the CTR Web Portal. This memo serves as notice that the annual inventory of GAAP capital assets is underway.  To assist with this effort, several MMARS reports are available on DocDirect.  Every department must return a form confirming the review is complete.

GAAP, Statutory Receivables, and Higher Education Reporting Available on PartnerNet
PartnerNet is now available for departments to enter their GAAP Instructions, Statutory Receivables, and the Institutions of Higher Education reporting.    Please see CTR Memo FY2014-26 regarding the Instructions/GAAP Package that provides guidance to departments on reporting year-end activity and obligations to the Comptroller’s Office.   The due date for submitting the GAAP Package is Monday, August 4.

Please see CTR Memo FY2014-29 regarding the Statutory Accounts Receivable instructions to departments for reporting receivables due from a governmental body that are related to expenses incurred on or before June 30, and collected by the Comptroller’s Office between July 1 and August 31.  The preliminary estimate is due on August 1 and the final report is due on September 5.  

Please see CTR Memo FY2014-28 regarding accounting and financial reporting guidance for FY2014 for the Institutions of Higher Education. 

CTR Now Accepting PAC Requests
CTR has issued a new Prior Appropriation Continued (PAC) form for departments to request a legislatively-authorized balance forward of funds. The new form features a Budgeting Worksheet to assist departments in determining the PAC amount available.  Forms may not be accepted with incomplete information.  The Office of the Comptroller anticipates fulfilling PAC requests shortly after the GAA has been signed.

The new PAC form must be sent via email (instructions on form) from the Department Head or Authorized Signatory, hand written forms will not be accepted via fax or regular mail.  The email coming from the signer is sufficient for authorization; hand-written signatures are no longer required.

Split-Year Payroll
The pay period ending 7/12/2014 is the Split-Year Pay Period. The Split-Year Percentage will be 10% to FY2014 and 90% to FY2015 for most payroll charges. Departments should consult Comptroller Memo FY2014–27 for guidance.

Funds availability rules will be enforced for all FY2014 charges. Departments should NOT encumber funds for the Split-Year Pay Period.  Payroll Holds (PHs) are not liquidated until the Accounts Payable Payroll Periods (pay periods ending on 7/26, 8/9, and 8/23).

Departments should ensure that Position Authorized Accounting (POAA) rules are in place to authorize all payroll charges for both FY2014 and FY2015. During the annual Rules Roll at the end of May, POAA rules were assigned an end date of 6/30/2014.

Draft POAA documents for departmental rules for FY2015 are available in the LCM Document Catalog for departmental review and submittal. Departments can enter *C14* as the Document ID search criteria to find all draft POAA rules. In order for CTR to approve rolled rules, departments must provide the FY2015 justification in the Document Comments tab of the POAA transaction.

Statewide Contracts Updates
The new Statewide Contract for Audit, Accounting and Revenue Recovery Services is now active and replaces PRF08designatedOSC which terminated on June 30.  This new Statewide Contract provides a broad range of  accounting, audit and revenue recovery services, and is available for use by departments and other public entities.  All documents necessary to use the Statewide Contract are posted on www.commbuys.com under the Master Blanket Purchase order PO-15-1079-1079C-1079C-00000001566.

To locate Contract from www.commbuys.com, Select “Contract & Bid Search”, click “Contracts/Blankets”, and then type in “1566” under “Contract/Blanket #” and click “Find It”.  The PO can also be located by searching under “1079 Office of the Comptroller” under “Organization” and clicking “Find It”.

Departments are required to review the Contract User Guide for instructions on how to use this contract.  Under the Attachments section of the PO, download the zip file entitled, “MANDATORY CONTRACT USER GUIDE SOW FORMS VENDOR CONTACTS”.  To obtain competitive quotes, users are required to download the Statement of Work (SOW) issued for the type of services sought, populate the SOW with the engagement requirements, and send to multiple vendors approved under the service category sought,. 

Contract #: PRF56DesignatedOSC2

COMMBUYS Master Blanket Purchase Order: PO-15-1079-1079C-1079C-00000001566

MMARS MA #: MAOSDPRF56DesignatedOSC2 is active through 6/30/2017.

Direct link to PO on www.COMMBUYS.com.

Fringe Benefit, Payroll Tax, Indirect Cost Charges for Accounting Period 12
The fringe benefit, payroll tax and indirect cost chargebacks for Accounting Period 12 (June), FY2014, will be run this Saturday, July 12. All eligible expenditures processed during Accounting Period 12 will be subject to these assessments.

Departments should ensure that the budget structure tables for appropriated (payroll tax only), federal grants and other non-budgetary accounts are properly established so these charges post without rejecting under object codes D09 (fringe benefits and payroll taxes) and E16 (indirect costs).

Purge of Rejected Documents over 75 Days Old
Rejected documents in the system accumulate in the document catalog and are removed in a regularly scheduled monthly purge of documents over 75 days old. The next purge will occur on Tuesday, July 15, and will delete rejected documents entered before May 1. If you have documents entered before May 1 that you would like to save, please place them on "hold".

To place a document on "hold":

  • Locate the document in the Document Catalog.
  • Check the checkbox to the left of the document (in the Document Catalog).
  • Click "Action Menu", select "Scheduling Actions", select "Mark Document" and choose "Hold".    

MMARS Availability Wednesday and Saturday
Due to split-year payroll processing, MMARS may be unavailable on Wednesday, July 16. On-line access will be announced via listserv and MMARS news if work completes early.

MMARS and LCM will be unavailable Saturday, July 12 due to scheduled system processing.

Close/Open Key Dates July 12 – 19

July 14, Monday

  • Last day to enter split-year payroll.
  • GAAP Distribution #2.

July 16, Wednesday

  • MMARS Unavailable.

July 18, Friday

  • Balance Forward program to begin after nightly cycle.
  • Roll uncommitted balance for appropriation types 2CN, 3TN, 3TX, (excluding fed grants 4FN).
  • Final HMBEN008 Compensated Absences balance report as of 6/30/2014 (available on document direct) for audit.

Weekly Fraud Awareness and Prevention Fact - Improving Your Cyber Security: On the Web
Posting personal information to social networks such as Facebook or LinkedIn can provide another avenue for attackers to gather information on you. When using these sites, turn your security feature and privacy settings to their most strict level to prevent unauthorized people from viewing your personal information. Subsequently, you should think carefully before adding a new person to your "network."

Most social networks also have tools that will allow you to limit what content certain groupings of connections can see. With an ever increasing amount of commerce and general interaction with services transitioning to the web, it is also crucial to ensure that the websites you are using are secure. Whenever connecting to a website that collects personal information or facilitates payment or the transfer of funds, you should ensure that it is being done over an encrypted connection. Some signs that the website is secure are a web address beginning with "https" or the presence of a padlock when connected to the site.

Sending and receiving documents or information via email has become increasingly popular for its ease and speed, but you should take caution when transmitting information using this method. Try to utilize email providers that support both encrypted connections and encrypted sending/receiving of messages. Older and legacy email addresses (e.g. Hotmail) tend to be some of the least secure. Surprisingly, most email services provided by internet service providers (e.g. Comcast or Verizon) do NOT support encrypted transmission.

Even if you are taking precautions to secure your email, there is no guarantee that the person on the other end is. If they have a weak password or use an email service that does not use encrypted connection portals, any personal information that you send them is at risk, so use caution when sending sensitive information via email.

If you have any questions regarding this or previous Fraud Awareness and Prevention Facts, please contact the Comptroller Help Desk at 617-973-2468 or via email at Comptroller.Info@State.MA.US. To report Fraud, Waste, or Abuse contact one of the Commonwealth’s Whistleblower Hotlines.

Upcoming Training Sessions and Meetings

  • Federal Grant Activity Reconciliation – Tuesday, July 15, 9:00 A.M. – 1:00 P.M., One Ashburton Place Boston, 9th Floor Training Lab
  • Intro to HR/CMS Payroll Warehouse – Wednesday, July 16, 9:00 A.M. – 3:00 P.M., One Ashburton Place Boston, 9th Floor Training Lab
  • Fraud Awareness and Prevention – Thursday, July 17, 9:00 A.M. – 12:00 P.M., One Ashburton Place Boston, 9th Floor Executive Conference Room
  • Webcast How to Run a Warehouse Starter Query – Friday, July 18, 1:00 P.M. – 2:00 P.M., Online Training
  • Encumbrance Management – Tuesday, July 22, 9:00 A.M. – 12:00 P.M., One Ashburton Place Boston, 9th Floor Training Lab
  • Payment Management – Tuesday, July 22, 1:00 P.M. – 4:00 P.M., One Ashburton Place Boston, 9th Floor Training Lab
  • Intermediate MMARS Warehouse – Wednesday, July 23, 9:00 A.M. – 1:00 P.M., One Ashburton Place Boston, 9th Floor Training Lab
  • Vendor Management – Thursday, July 24, 9:00 A.M. – 12:00 P.M., One Ashburton Place Boston, 9th Floor Training Lab
  • CIW Report Building with MS Access – Tuesday, July 29, 9:00 A.M. – 12:00 P.M., One Ashburton Place Boston, 9th Floor Training Lab
  • LCM Management – Wednesday, July 23, 9:00 A.M. – 3:00 P.M., One Ashburton Place Boston, 9th Floor Training Lab
  • Accounts Receivable for Beginners – Thursday, July 31, 9:00 A.M. – 12:00 P.M., One Ashburton Place Boston, 9th Floor Training Lab

Register for these sessions via the Comptroller's Training and Meeting Schedule which lists classes scheduled through August and Payroll User Groups through 2014.

MMARS Hint of the Week – Create and Use Templates
To create templates in MMARS, access the document catalog and enter the relevant information: Document Code, Department Code, and Unit. Once this information is entered, select the Create Template checkbox at the bottom of the screen. To use the template once it has been created:

  1. Use the Document Catalog to search for the template. Use the Document Catalog to search for the template. (In the "Phase" column, it will indicate "Template".)
  2. Once you have located the template, click the link to open it.
  3. From the Action Menu, select Edit>Copy. The Copy Document page displays.
  4. In the Target Document section, type in the required information which includes Document Department and Unit Code. The Document Code field will default. To create the Document ID, you can either enter a unique ID manually or select the Auto Numbering checkbox.
  5. Once you have entered all the information, click Copy Document. The new document with the new ID displays and contains all of the information carried over from the template.