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Capital Expenditure Authorization (CEA) Process

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 that have extended useful lives. For example, a classroom will be utilized for many years, whereas office supplies will not.

When to Use a CEA

For Equipment

A Capital Equipment Acquisition in the amount of $50,000 OR MORE MUST BE PROCESSED via the CEA Workflow Approval System. The CEA system must also be used even if the amount is under $50,000 if:

  • Funding Sources are anything other than departmental budgets or grants
  • Acquisition of Vehicles
  • Capital Acquisition by Lease

For Construction/Renovation Projects

A construction/renovation project of $25,000 OR MORE MUST BE PROCESSED via CEA Workflow Approval System The CEA system must also be used even if the amount is under $25,000 if:

  • Funding includes any source other than a Dept ID.

CEA 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).
  2. 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.
  3. Department or school representative must contact the Budget Center contact of their school, prompting the need for processing a CEA request.
  4. CEA request should include 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 Budget Center contact 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 CEA System.
  • Once recorded into the 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 obtained, 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 CEA System

The 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 Center contact for approval of its use.
  • If access is approved, the school Budget Center contact will contact Tufts Technology Services (TTS) via email for guidance on identifying the type of access and forms required.

CEA System Documentation

CEA Resources