Manual of Policies and Procedures

G/2.3 Staff gifts and benefits

Contact Officer

Executive Director, Finance Resource Management

Approval Date

29/08/2013

Approval Authority

Chief Financial Officer

Date of Next Review

01/09/2016

2.3.1 Policy
2.3.2 Nominal gifts or benefits
2.3.3 Internal gifts
2.3.4 Significant gifts or benefits
2.3.5 Reportable gifts or benefits
2.3.6 Intangible gifts or benefits
2.3.7 Register of Significant and Reportable Gifts
Modification History

2.3.1 Policy

The scope of this policy does not include provision of gifts from QUT to external parties.

A member of the University shall not

  • solicit for private purposes any benefit in connection with that person's official function and duties
  • accept any benefit for any official function or duties performed or not performed which could create a conflict of interest or be seen to create such conflict
  • accept any gift or money or benefit by way of loans and the like for any functions or duties performed or not performed.

A member of the University may accept a tangible (of lasting value) or intangible (of no lasting value) gift or benefit not referred to above provided that:

  • if the fair value of the gift or benefit is less than $50 (Nominal Gift) the person gives prior advice where practicable to their head of school or department of the circumstances around the gift or benefit;
  • if fair value of the gift or benefit is between $50 and $300 (Significant Gift), a significant gift declaration is submitted to Finance Resource Management by emailing giftregister@qut.edu.au, and the gift or benefit will be recorded in the Register of Significant and Reportable Gifts (G/2.3.7);
  • if amount of the gift or benefit exceeds $300 (Reportable Gift), a reportable gift declaration is submitted to Finance Resource Management by emailing giftregister@qut.edu.au , and the gift or benefit will be recorded in the Register of Significant and Reportable Gifts (G/2.3.7).

Members of the University should be aware of the provisions of the QUT Staff Code of Conduct, and that gifts and benefits may be subject to Fringe Benefits Tax legislation.

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2.3.2 Nominal gifts or benefits

Monetary nominal gifts should not be accepted under any circumstances.

Nominal gifts or benefits have a fair value less than $50. Examples include, but are not limited to, entertainment, hospitality, a bottle of wine, bunch of flowers, and box of chocolates.

Any gift accepted by a member of the University is the property of the University. At the discretion of the relevant head of school or department, the University may retain the gift or the member may retain the gift under the terms of this policy.

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2.3.3 Internal gifts

The relevant executive dean of faculty or head of division approval must be attained for any gifts proposed to be given by the University to a staff member. These gifts are to be recorded in the Register of Significant and Reportable Gifts (G/2.3.7) by emailing giftregister@qut.edu.au.

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2.3.4 Significant gifts or benefits

Monetary significant gifts should not be accepted under any circumstances.

Significant gifts or benefits are construed as a single gift of property (including ornate and precision display items, clocks, furniture, figurines, works of art, jewellery, computers, mobile devices (or similar), equipment, or any benefit having significant or lasting real value), travel, entertainment or hospitality of a fair value between $50 and $300.

Significant gifts or benefits, including intangible gifts, received are to be recorded in the Register of Significant and Reportable Gifts (G/2.3.7).

Any gift received by a member of the University is the property of the University. At the discretion of the relevant head of school or department, the University may retain the gift or the member may retain the gift under the terms of this policy. The treatment of this gift must be declared within 30 days to Finance Resource Management by emailing giftregister@qut.edu.au.

In respect to the provision of speaking services at a conference by a University member, it is possible that a significant gift may be received as a gesture of thanks or in lieu of speaker fees. Under such circumstances, GST obligations may arise and therefore specific advice should be obtained from the Tax Accountant, Finance Resource Management or by emailing tax@qut.edu.au.

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2.3.5 Reportable gifts or benefits

Monetary reportable gifts should not be accepted under any circumstances.

Reportable gifts or benefits are construed as a single gift of property (including ornate and precision display items, clocks, furniture, figurines, works of art, jewellery, computers, mobile devices (or similar), equipment, or any benefit having significant or lasting real value), travel, entertainment or hospitality of a fair value greater than $300.

However if a member of the University receives multiple gifts or benefits, from the same giver, within one year of the first gift, and the aggregate fair value of all gifts exceeds $300, then all are reportable gifts.

Reportable gifts or benefits, including intangible gifts or benefits received are to be recorded in the Register of Significant and Reportable Gifts (G/2.3.7).

A reportable gift or benefit given to a University member is the property of the University. However, at the discretion of the relevant executive dean of faculty or head of division, the University member may purchase the gift or benefit by paying to the University the difference between the fair value of the reportable gift or benefit and the reportable gift or benefit threshold (currently $300). The member of staff should consult the Tax Accountant, Finance Resource Management with regard to any potential FBT obligations associated with the purchase. Such payments are not required for intangible reportable gifts and benefits.

In respect to the provision of speaking services at a conference by a University member, it is possible that a reportable gift may be received as a gesture of thanks or in lieu of speaker fees. Under such circumstances, GST consequences may arise and therefore specific advice should be obtained from the Tax Accountant, Finance Resource Management.

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2.3.6 Intangible gifts or benefits

An intangible gift or benefit is one which has no lasting value and which cannot be dealt with as property of the University.

Examples of intangible gifts or benefits include but are not limited to:

  • entertainment and hospitality;
  • tickets to the theatre, cultural events, sporting and other events;
  • corporate offers of transportation, accommodation, tickets, meals, and functions;
  • conference transportation, accommodation and fees.

An intangible gift or benefit can be nominal, significant, or reportable and must be dealt with in the way that suits its classification, except that, if it is a reportable gift and is retained by the University member, there is no requirement to reimburse the University for the difference between its fair value and $300.

 

2.3.7 Register of Significant and Reportable Gifts

A Register of Significant and Reportable Gifts is maintained by the Director Finance Resource Management. Notifications of gifts must include the following minimum information and be sent via email to the Finance Resource Management managed email account giftregister@qut.edu.au.

  • details of the gift or benefit; (e.g: dollar value, description of the gift, reason why the gift was received)
  • the parties involved; and
  • in the case of significant and reportable gifts made, the approval given; and
  • in the case of significant and reportable gifts received, the present location of the gift or how the proceeds of the gift were applied.

The Register of Significant and Reportable Gifts will be reviewed periodically throughout the year by the Finance Resource Management Department to identify any trends or patterns that may cause concern and need corrective or preventative action.

The above provisions should not be construed as prohibiting the pursuit of financial assistance or benefit to the University.

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Modification History

Date

Sections

Source

Details

10.07.18 All Vice-Chancellor and President Revised policy to include department name change from Corporate Finance to Finance Resource Management
29.08.13 All Executive Director, Finance and Resource Planning Periodic review - policy revised to update reportable gift dollar limit to exceeding $300, include gift register email, and other minor rewording

19.06.08

All

Acting Executive Director, Finance and Resource Planning

Policy reviewed – no change required

06.09.05

All

Executive Director, Finance and Resource Planning

Policy reviewed (no change required) and renumbered to G/2.3 (formerly G/10.1)

10.12.03

All

Acting Director, Financial Services

Revised in accordance with the requirements of the new Gifts and Benefits Policy of the Queensland Government (No. 03/72036)

27.06.03

All

Secretariat Manager

Added reference to QUT Code of Conduct in accordance with Internal Audit Report on Potential Conflict of Interests - Report No 2002/40 (April 2003)

01.03.02

All

Director, Accounting Services

Updated value of reportable gift in accordance with Financial Management Standard (Amendment 1, 2001)

24.05.99

All

Finance Manager

Updated

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