University policy has been changed to allow reimbursement for the use of wireless communication devices to conduct University business effective January 1, 2008. The attached Wireless Communication Devices Policy is provided for your information and reference. The policy provides a wireless communication supplement to eligible employees. Employees may use the service provider of their choice. However, they must agree to make the number available to the University and also pay the amount due to the service provider.

This policy provides a taxable supplement for expenses incurred while conducting University business, giving the employee flexibility to choose a communication device and service provider that best meets their needs. The University does not have a recommended vendor.

We surveyed many institutions to determine the best practices for wireless communication devices, and also carefully reviewed IRS regulations. About 2/3 of the institutions surveyed have a policy similar to the one we have developed, while others are considering switching to this type of plan. The other option considered was direct payment by the University for devices and phone bills. This option is not practical, because IRS regulations would require each department and employee to keep detailed logs of all calls and reimburse the University for personal calls. All calls, whether personal or business, would be subject to open records law. The supplement method that we selected eliminates the need to keep such records.

No additional funds will be added to your department's budget to cover this service. If you have any questions regarding this policy, please contact Kerry Goens at 256.824.2348 or

Wireless Communication Devices Policy