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Small Agency Services Bulletin - January 2016

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January 2016

Your feedback is important

Please send your feedback about the Department of Enterprise Services’ (DES) Small Agency Financial Services (SAFS). Your feedback helps us improve and better meet your needs. Finance welcomes your feedback at any time.

Important Dates

Jan. 29 –

  • Annual and quarterly Department of Revenue Use Tax Filing and payment is due. The majority of small agencies’ Department of Revenue Use Tax filings are annual filings.
  • IRS1099s are to be mailed to vendors with a postmark no later than Jan. 29.
  • IRS W-2s are to be mailed to employees with a postmark no later than Jan. 29.
  • Sick leave buyout options are due back to DES Payroll. If employees opt for sick leave buyout, it will be paid in the Feb.10 paychecks.
  • Performance measure actuals for the quarter ending Dec. 31, 2015, are due for agencies that report on a quarterly basis.
  • Updated compensation data for 2017-19 calculations for collective bargaining and budget development are due. Your DES Budget Analyst will be working with you soon to gather information. Please think about:
    • Best approximation of your budgeted full time employees (FTEs) and salaries for your projected operating budget maintenance level for 2017-19
    • Position reallocations
    • Adding or eliminating positions

Feb. 6 –

  • Employees will receive their W-2 forms in the mail by this date. Contact the DES Payroll Office to obtain a copy on their behalf if they do not receive their W-2 by this date.

Feb. 8 –

  • January invoices and travel reimbursement request are due to Accounts Payable in order for them to reflect in your agency’s January financial statements.

Feb. 23 –

  • Small Agency Liaison Meeting, 1500 Jefferson Street, Room 2332, from 10 a.m. to noon.

Feb. 26 -

  • Vendors requesting a correction to their 2015 Internal Revenue Service 1099 tax forms should contact DES Accounts Payable at (360) 407-8119 no later than noon on Feb. 26.

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Important Messages

DES working on budget projections

Budget analysts at DES have already completed projections for many of the small agencies. Now that we are in the final six months of the fiscal year, DES will be providing projections for the remainder of FY16 to all of our small agency customers. Please partner with your DES budget analyst to incorporate spending plans into the budget.

The following items should be included in budget projections:

  • Changes to revenue expectations
  • Staff hires, vacancies, retirement leave cash outs
  • Unexpected expenditures (e.g., unemployment, attorney general, auditor, repairs and maintenance)
  • Infrequent expenditures (e.g., annual subscription or insurance payments)
  • Additional travel or meetings
  • Moving expenses, rent increases
  • Future investments

See how we performed in October, November, and December

View the Finance Performance Measures and HR Performance Measures. Our rate and service commitment documents for HR and Finance identify target measures pertaining to the services we provide small agencies. Check out the performance measures under 'Related Links' on the right side of the web page to see how we are performing.

New calendar year 2016

Now that we’re in 2016, here are a few important reminders:

  • Update your W-4: If there are any changes in your dependent or marital status. Please note: You are not required to make updates if you have no changes. Find your current withholding status in the top right corner of each earnings statement
  • Update your address: Have you moved? Now is a good time to update your address. Update your address in Employee Self Service (ESS) or send an email to the HR office.
  • Review Beneficiary: Now is a good time to review your beneficiary information for your life insurance, retirement, deferred compensation program, and your Health Savings Account.
  • What is a W-2 Correction (W-2 C)?: If you are issued a W-2 correction after you file taxes, you will have to re-submit your 2014 taxes to the IRS.

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Small Agency Financial Services News

DES Accounts Payable statistics for December

  • A total of 1,543 payments were processed.
  • 1,374 non-travel invoices paid.
  • 169 travel reimbursements for employees and board members/commissioners paid.
  • 18 percent of the non-travel invoices were paid using delegated authority letters provided by agencies.
  • 75 percent of travel reimbursements were submitted and processed through the Travel and Expense Management System (TEMS).

Payroll statistics for December

  • 10 New Hires/Rehires
  • 12 Separations
  • 14 Transfers (in/out)
  • 1 Walk Thru
  • 1 Overpayment

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Travel Tips

Travel reimbursement is a complicated issue. The Small Agency Services Bulletin regularly highlights travel rules listed in the Office of Financial Management’s State Administrative and Accounting Manual.

Types of costs that are included with in meal allowances (per diem)

A traveler’s meal allowance can be used for more than just the expense of any particular meal.

Meal allowances cover the following costs:

  • The basic cost of a meal,
  • Any incidental expenses,
  • Any applicable sales tax, and
  • Any customary tip or gratuity.

SAAM 10.40.30 defines fees and tips given to porters, baggage carriers, hotel and restaurant staff, flight attendants and others for personal services performed as incidental expenses. Such expenses are not allowed to be reimbursed as miscellaneous expenses. An allowance for incidental expenses is included within the daily subsistence rates for the area of travel.

State mileage reimbursement rate for privately owned vehicles has changed

The state mileage reimbursement rate for privately owned vehicles has decreased from $0.575 to $0.54 effective Jan. 1, 2016.

This decrease reflects the rate set by the United States Treasury Department which, pursuant to RCW 43.03.060, is the maximum rate the state can pay. For agencies using the Travel and Expense Management System (TEMS) for travel reimbursements, the mileage rate will be automatically updated.

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Contact Us

If you have suggestions or feedback about the Small Agency Services Bulletin, please send your comments to SmallAgencyBulletin@des.wa.gov.

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