Chapter 3.26


3.26.010  Intent.

3.26.020  Use.

3.26.030  Number.

3.26.040  Authorization for use.

3.26.050   Security.

3.26.060  Credit limits.

3.26.070  Spending approval.

3.26.080  Loss of card.

3.26.090  Protection against unauthorized use.

3.26.100  Documentation for payment.

3.26.110  Approved and prohibited uses.

3.26.120  Review of credit card expenditures.

3.26.130  Violation – Penalty.

3.26.010 Intent.

The intent of this chapter is to regulate the use for city business of credit cards issued to the city by elected officials or employees of the city for use for city business. (Ord. 03-08 § 1, 2004)

3.26.020 Use.

Credit cards as specified in HMC 3.26.010 are to be used for city business only. (Ord. 03-08 § 1, 2004)

3.26.030 Number.

The city manager is authorized to obtain retail credit cards, or charge cards, for individual retail stores, fueling stations or similar outlets, but the obtaining of any such card shall first be approved by the city council. At the effective date of the ordinance codified in this chapter, retail cards, or charge cards, held by the city, are the following: Home Depot, Staples, Office Depot, Office Max, Dickey Petroleum Gas, and Chevron Gas. These are deemed authorized by the city council. There shall be no more than two retail, or charge, cards for any individual retail store, fueling station, or similar outlet. The city manager is authorized to obtain a general bank credit card (such as Visa, Mastercharge, or similar bank credit card useable at numerous outlets). There shall be no more than one such general bank credit card. (Ord. 03-08 § 1, 2004)

3.26.040 Authorization for use.

Retail credit, or charge, cards shall be issued in the name of the city of Hughson, and the city manager shall establish, in writing, a policy specifying who may use such cards on behalf of the city. The general bank card shall be issued in the name of the city of Hughson, and, if required by the issuing bank, jointly in the name of the city manager, and may be used only by the city manager, in the manner and for the purposes specified in this chapter. (Ord. 03-08 § 1, 2004)

3.26.050 Security.

Retail credit, or charge, cards shall be kept in the safe in City Hall, and checked out for use in accordance with the policy established by the city manager. The general bank card shall be kept in the safe in City Hall, and shall be used only by the city manager. (Ord. 03-08 § 1, 2004)

3.26.060 Credit limits.

Retail credit, or charge, cards shall have a credit limit of no more than $1,000. The general bank card shall have a credit limit of no more than $5,000. No credit limit shall be increased without approval of the city council. (Ord. 03-08 § 1, 2004)

3.26.070 Spending approval.

The city manager may authorize expenditures to be paid by charge or credit card, subject to the requirements of Chapter 3.24 HMC, for up to $500.00. Any expenditure to be paid by charge or credit card which exceeds $500.00 must first be approved by the city manager and two councilmembers; provided, that if the expenditure is on behalf of a councilmember (as, for example, a hotel reservation for the councilmember for a trip on city business), that councilmember shall not be one of the two approving the expenditure. (Ord. 03-08 § 1, 2004)

3.26.080 Loss of card.

If the city credit card is lost or stolen, the city official/employee to whom it was issued for use is responsible for reporting the card’s loss. The city official/employee must report the loss to the city manager, or his or her designee, the day the loss occurs or the first business day after it occurs if the loss occurs on a nonbusiness day. The report to the city manager, or his or her designee, shall be made in writing, include the name of the city official/employee to whom the card was issued for use, the date and time of loss, and efforts to recover the card. Failure to report the loss in this manner may result in city official/employee being personally responsible for unauthorized charges. (Ord. 03-08 § 1, 2004)

3.26.090 Protection against unauthorized use.

City officials/employees in possession of a city credit card shall use all reasonable diligence to protect the city’s cards from unauthorized use and inappropriate disclosure of account information which might allow misuse of city’s credit line (e.g., issuing the number for an unsecured Internet purchase). (Ord. 03-08 § 1, 2004)

3.26.100 Documentation for payment.

City officials/employees using credit cards are responsible for ensuring the statement and supporting receipts, applicable bid documents, travel reimbursement form and similar documents, reconciled to the statement, are submitted to the city finance department for payment in a timely manner which ensures penalties are not imposed. To avoid penalties and the possible loss of the credit card privilege, it is recommended credit card statements be processed for reimbursement immediately upon receipt. If an employee disputes the validity of any charges on a credit card statement, he/she shall immediately notify the city finance department, in writing, when submitting the reconciled statement for payment. The bill must still be paid in a timely manner. Business meal expenses will be documented by writing the name of those in attendance and the general purpose of the meeting on the back of the receipt or other attached document. (Ord. 03-08 § 1, 2004)

3.26.110 Approved and prohibited uses.

A. Approved Uses.

1. Approved travel expenses;

2. Hotel expenses for approved travel;

3. Meals for approved travel;

4. Automobile rental for approved travel;

5. Conference and seminar registration;

6. Local meeting expenses;

7. Business lunches;

8. Fuel for city vehicles for out of area travel;

9. Maintenance and repairs performed at vendor’s site;

10. Office supplies, computer equipment, accessories and software purchases;

11. Publications.

B. Prohibited Uses.

1. Personal expenses;

2. Purchases not in compliance with city purchasing rules and regulations;

3. Cash advances;

4. Personal meals;

5. Professional memberships;

6. Consultant fees;

7. Contract payments;

8. Expenses for events sponsored by political organizations, candidates, office holders or other political purposes. (Ord. 03-08 § 1, 2004)

3.26.120 Review of credit card expenditures.

The city manager will review all monthly credit card statements to determine validity of charges. Any charges that cannot be determined to be in compliance with the guidelines set forth in this policy will be referred to the city council at the next regularly scheduled council meeting. Monthly credit card statements will be submitted to the city council along with the warrants. (Ord. 03-08 § 1, 2004)

3.26.130 Violation – Penalty.

Any person who violates any of the provisions of this chapter is guilty of a misdemeanor. (Ord. 03-08 § 1, 2004)