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GSA SmartPay Training

Lesson 7 of 14

Making Purchases

What Can I Buy Using my GSA SmartPay Purchase Account?

It is important to understand the limits on purchase account use and to manage your purchases against those limits.

You are allowed to purchase any commercially available supply or service not prohibited by either Federal or agency-specific procurement regulations. To find out your agency specific procurement requirements regarding purchase amounts, receipt documentation and approvals contact your A/OPC or contracting officer. An approval may be required prior to purchase and may be needed in conjunction with a subsequent review of the purchase activity. If a purchase appears questionable, consult your A/OPC or contracting office.

There are a number of purchases that are STRICTLY PROHIBITED. The purchase account shall not be used for:

  • Long-term rental or lease of land or buildings
  • Travel or travel-related expenses (However, conference rooms, meeting spaces, local transportation services such as metro fare cards, subway tokens, and shuttle services can be properly acquired on a purchase account)
  • Cash advances (unless permitted by Agency/Organization)

Government-to-Government Transactions

Government-to-Government Transactions are payments between different agencies (inter-governmental) or within the same agency (intra-governmental). In most instances, these transactions are classified under Merchant Category Code 9399, Miscellaneous Government Services. See Treasury Financial Manual Announcement A-2014-04 , Limitations on Credit Card Collection Transactions and Policy for Splitting Transactions.

Effective June 1, 2015 the Treasury Department lowered the maximum dollar amount allowed for intergovernmental transactions to $24,999 per day (not per single transaction). This change does not impact agency purchases from commercial vendors, either via open market or through GSA Advantage. It does apply to purchases from GSA Global Supply or GSA's retail stores, as well as purchases from Personal Property or GSA Fleet. A few notes to keep in mind:

  • Customers cannot divide transactions into smaller pieces to evade this limit. For example, a buyer cannot make two purchases of $15,000 each, because that total on a given day would exceed the $24,999 limit.
  • Transactions that exceed the limit will be denied by Vantiv, the contractor Treasury uses to manage transactions.
  • Treasury retains the option to lower the limit further at a later date. One goal is to reduce the fees government pays when it accepts the purchase account for large transactions.

Additional Resources

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