4.42 Cellular Phone or Other Mobile Communication Devices
(Adopted 4-7-2003; Revised 8-25-2008, 2-2-2015, 12-5-2022)
College employees may be paid a non-taxable stipend for use of a personal cellular phone or other mobile communication device if the employee’s job requires them to work regularly in the field and they need to be immediately accessible, if the employee’s job requires them to be immediately accessible outside of normal work hours, if the employee is responsible for critical infrastructure or emergency response and needs to be immediately accessible at all times, if the employee travels often and needs to be accessible while traveling, or if the device is deemed essential to the performance of the employee’s duties
Procedures (Revised 2-2-15, 12-5-2022)
4.42.1 Stipend for Cellular Phone or Other Mobile Communication Devices
Full-time administrative and professional staff may receive a non-taxable stipend for use of a personal cellular phone or other mobile communication device when it is deemed a business necessity to the performance of the employee’s duties and as approved by the President.
- The dollar amount of the stipend should approximate the employee’s anticipated business-related expenses.
- The stipend is intended to reimburse the employee for business use of the phone, not to pay the entire phone bill, under the assumption that most employees also use their cell phone for personal calls.
- The stipend amount will not exceed the employee’s monthly phone bill.
- The stipend payment rate will be reviewed annually and is subject to change.
- The stipend is not an entitlement, and the amount can be changed or withdrawn as deemed necessary.
4.42.2 Approval of Stipend Payment for Positions
The appropriate Vice President may request approval for a stipend for a cellular phone or other mobile communication device for staff who require a device for College business. The stipend will be charged to the department budget.
The President or designee will approve/disapprove requests for a cellular phone or other mobile communication device stipend based on the Vice President’s recommendation, business necessity of the position, and budget. The College will use a tiered allowance structure based on the job function of the employee as outlined below.
- Tier 1 – $30 per month
The employee’s job function requires them to be accessible on a limited basis outside of scheduled or normal working hours to perform work-related duties and/or the employee spends a large portion of their normal working hours outside their office; the expectation is light usage of the phone for business purposes.
- Tier 2 – $50 per month
The employee’s job function requires them to be accessible a considerable amount of time outside of scheduled or normal working hours and it is important to the College that the employee be accessible during those times to perform business-related duties. Types of positions funded under this tier include but are not limited to Satellite Directors.
- Tier 3 – $75 per month
The employee’s job function requires them to be accessible and on call to handle College needs as the situation dictates and routinely perform work-related duties outside of scheduled or normal working hours that cannot wait until the next business day. Types of positions funded under this tier include but are not limited to Vice Presidents, Director of Public Relations, Director of Facilities and Grounds, and Director of Information Technology.
- The phone allowance for the College President is determined by the Board of Trustees.
4.42.3 Stipend Payment for Use of Personal Cellular Phone or Mobile Device for Necessary College Business
Employees who are eligible for the phone stipend must complete the Cell Phone Allowance Request Form. The request must be approved by the appropriate Vice President and the College President.
The intention of the stipend is to reimburse employees for the incremental cost of business use of a personal mobile phone or other mobile device and thus represents non-taxable compensation. The stipend is paid monthly, does not increase the employee’s base salary, and will not be included in the calculation of any College benefits.
The stipend will be effective from the hire date to the end of the fiscal year and again at the beginning of each fiscal year.
The stipend will stop under the following conditions:
- Employee accepts a position that is not eligible
- Termination of employment
- Misuse of phone – usage that is inconsistent with College Policy or with local, state, or federal law
- Changes deemed by the administration make the employee’s position ineligible for the allowance
4.42.4 Responsibility of Users
The cell phone service is personally owned by the employee. An employee with a cell phone stipend must maintain an active cell phone contract for the life of the stipend.
If the employee’s job requires the use of a cell phone or other mobile device, appropriate safety precautions must be taken when operating the phone or device while conducting College business in a vehicle.
Acceptance of the stipend will constitute the employee’s permission to allow the College to distribute the phone number as appropriate to conduct official College business, as defined in the approval process.
The College does not accept any liability for claims, charges, or disputes between the service provider and the employee.
If the employee terminates the wireless contract at any point, they must notify their supervisor within five (5) business days to terminate the stipend.
Employees are expected to delete and/or provide to the College as appropriate all College data from the device when their employment with the College is severed, except when required to maintain that data in compliance with a litigation hold notice.
Any employee who receives a stipend is required to register their number with the College’s emergency notification system.
Employees are expected to comply with applicable state laws regarding the use of cellular telephones.
Employees must assist the College in providing access to information about or contained on the mobile device covered by this Policy in response to requests for such data or information by third parties as required by federal and/or state law.
4.42.5 College-Issued Cellular Phone or Other Mobile Communication Devices Guidelines
College departments may be issued a cellular phone or other mobile communication device when it is deemed a business necessity to the performance of the department duties.
- Business Use
A College issued cellular phone shall be used for appropriate business purposes. Such use is defined as appropriate when an employee: a) must: make a call related to furthering College operations or b) does not have access to a regular College telephone and the call cannot or should not wait until returning to the office.
- Responsibility of Users
Acceptance of a College cellular phone or mobile communication device constitutes an agreement on behalf of the user to abide by all federal and state laws and regulations and College policies.
- Misuse and Consequences
Any intentional misuse of a College issued cellular phone or mobile communication device will be subject to the College’s Code of Conduct and may result in the loss of the cellular or mobile communication device and/or other disciplinary action.
4.42.6 College-Provided Cellular Phone or Mobile Communication Device Service Selection
The Purchasing Manager will facilitate the purchase of all cell/mobile communication equipment in accordance with applicable state statutes and College Policy. Upon the recommendation of the Purchasing Manager, the Chief Financial Officer will select the rate plan which best meets the needs and budget of the College.
Detailed billing delineating all calls placed and received is required for all College-provided cell/mobile telephone and/or communication devices. This detail will show the date and time of the call, an identification of the call (either the number dialed or incoming call designation), call length, and the cost of the call.
- Annual Review
The Purchasing Manager will complete an annual review for the Chief Financial Officer of all cellular phones or mobile communication devices and services to evaluate whether phones are being used appropriately and frequently enough to justify continued use and that the rate plan(s) assigned is appropriate for the type of use required.
4.42.7 Cellular Phone or Mobile Communication Device Control
- Termination of Service
All equipment purchased by the College remains property of the College. When employment is terminated for any reason or an employee is separating from the College, all equipment must be returned to the College.
If it is determined that a current employee no longer needs a cellular phone, the supervisor should notify the Purchasing Agent so that this service may be discontinued. The President or designee and the Chief Financial Officer shall retain the right to suspend or discontinue the use of any or all cellular phones or mobile communication devices if this is determined to be in the best interest of the College.