Changes made to cell phone stipends

April 27, 2017 | UToday
By Christine Wasserman

To reduce costs and align the University with best practices, all current cell phone stipends will end effective Friday, June 30.

The University of Toledo has developed a new program for monthly cell phone stipends to employees whose duties and responsibilities require substantial business use of a cellular telephone.

The following criteria will be applied in awarding stipends:

• Job requirement as a first responder on call before and/or after assigned work hours;

• Substantial job duties conducted away from campus;

• Safety requirements making cellular phone service an integral part of performing job duties; or

• Critical decision-maker.

Stipend amounts will include $25 per month for moderate use and $40 per month for heavier use.

To obtain a new stipend, employees must complete an authorization form that will be reviewed and recommended by the director or dean of an employee’s area, with approval sought from the area vice president.

Reviews and approvals may be for a single month or for multiple months, up to the number of months remaining in the current fiscal year. The reviews and approvals are to be conducted annually and in place before May 31 of each year. This allows the stipend to apply in the first pay period of the new fiscal year.

Employees are encouraged to work through Rocket Wireless to obtain equipment and their service plans, which can provide convenience and save money. Employees who receive stipends are responsible for selecting a carrier, equipment and service plan, paying their bills, and maintaining their availability via their cell phone.

The stipend is taxable income and will be included on W-2 wages, subject to income tax reporting.

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