Capital Expenditure Authorization (CEA) Process

Capital Expenditures

A Capital Expenditure is the amount used during a particular period to acquire or improve long-term assets such as property, plant or equipment.

A Capital Asset is a long-term asset that is not purchased or sold in the normal course of business. Generally, it includes fixed assets, e.g., land, buildings, furniture, equipment, fixtures and furniture. The university accounts for these expenses as assets rather than operating expenses, because they are resources which have extended, useful lives. For example, a classroom will be utilized for many years, whereas office supplies will not.

Capital Expenditure Authorization Process

The Capital Expenditure Authorization (CEA) Process begins when a department or school identifies the need for a specific project or capital equipment purchase. Capital Authorization Requests are requested, authorized and managed in an electronic web-based system.

  1. Department or school representative determines a need for a Capital Expenditure Authorization (CEA).
  • Department or school representative gathers information and documents specific, written details of what the expenditure will constitute, accompanied by a justification addressing the necessity of the expenditure.
  1. Department or school representative must contact the Budget and Fiscal Officer (BFO) of their respective school, prompting the need for processing a CEA request.
  2. In doing so, one must forward all related information as an attachment, including:
    • Name of Individual Requesting
    • Name of Individual Responsible (for managing project)
    • Associated department/school
    • Location of the project (campus)
    • Project Title
    • Cost/Expenditure breakout
    • Equipment Type (if applicable)
    • Justification of its need and all recommended funding sources (if known)
  • The BFO then performs a needs assessment of the request. If the request meets all associated requirements and is deemed fiscally prudent, he/she will move to designate the funding source(s) and record the request into the Tufts University CEA System.
  • Once recorded into the University CEA System, the request routes through a system generated approval workflow (which varies, depending upon CEA type, project location, funding sources and amounts)
  • Once all approvals have been gained, the request becomes a project and representatives within the General Accounting Office will systematically assign a Project/Grant number and authorize its budget within the PeopleSoft Financials system.
  • All capitalized expenses related to the CEA can then be charged to the Project/Grant number assigned and managed/tracked within PeopleSoft.

Access and Use of the Capital Expenditure Authorization System

The Tufts Capital Expenditure Authorization (CEA) System is an electronic web-based system, accessible via PeopleSoft. This system offers embedded on-line approvals and electronic routing, in accordance with local and university approval policies. Authorized users of the system are able to create, track and search upon capital expenditure requests. Supporting documentation can also easily be attached in electronic format.

Obtaining/Updating CEA System Access
  • Those who wish to request access to the CEA System are asked to contact their school’s Budget and Fiscal Officer (BFO) for approval of its use.
  • If access is approved, the school BFO is to contact Financial Information Systems via email , for guidance on identifying the type of access and forms required.
CEA System Documentation
CEA Resources

Capital Equipment Acquisition Procedures

A Capital Equipment Acquisition in the amount of $50,000 OR MORE MUST BE PROCESSED via the University Capital Expenditure Authorization Process (CEA Workflow Approval System).

Capital Equipment Acquisitions under the amount of $50,000 MUST BE PROCESSED via the University Capital Expenditure Authorization Process (CEA Workflow Approval System) WHEN:

  1. Funding Sources are anything other than departmental budgets or grants
  • Acquisition of Vehicles

Capital Construction and Renovation Acquisition Procedures

Construction, Renovation and Property Acquisition Projects of $25,000 OR MORE MUST BE PROCESSED via the University Capital Expenditure Authorization Process (CEA Workflow Approval System) if the project is for $25,000 or more.

  1. The CEA System MUST BE USED for projects under $25,000 when funding includes any source other than a Dept ID.
  2. The CEA System MUST BE USED when the process for capital construction and renovation is coordinated through the Operations Division.