Federal Library and Information Center Committee Library of Congress Washington DC 20540-4930
2. Account Management Responsibilities
3. Invoice Payment Process
4. Statements of Account
5. Monitoring Your Accounts
6. Electronic Fiscal Reporting
LC/FEDLINK conducts its accounting services for transfer pay members and its interagency agreement (IAG) funds transfers in accordance with federal financial policies and procedures such as those described in the GAO Principles of Federal Appropriations Law (the GAO Redbook), accounting practices and standards in the GAO Policy and Procedure Manual for Federal Agencies, applicable statutes such as the Economy Act and the Anti-Deficiency Act, and LC Financial Management Regulations.
This part of the FEDLINK Member Handbook describes the LC Financial Services Directorate (LC/FSD) and FEDLINK Fiscal Operations (FFO) policies and procedures for handling the budget authority you transfer to LC on your interagency agreement and the service dollars you transfer into your LC/FEDLINK service accounts. This part of the Handbook also describes your continuing responsibility for managing your money by monitoring your statements and invoices, and ensuring that your funds are used for the purposes for which they were appropriated.
On the signature page of your IAG your funds certification officer provides a funds citation for the funds obligated to LC under the agreement for FEDLINK fees and transfer pay services and identifies the period of availability of those funds. Federal appropriated funds are usually limited to one year of availability, but may have been appropriated by Congress with a multi-year or no-year availability. You must inform LC/FEDLINK of the character of your appropriated funds in order to ensure that no-year funds and multi-year funds can be moved forward into the current year when appropriate.
For the new fiscal year, beginning on October 1, the only funds available for new orders will be newly-appropriated funds that you transfer to LC/FEDLINK or funds you previously transferred that your agency specifically identified to LC as no-year funds or multi-year funds with availability for the new year.
The LC/FEDLINK program works in an annual framework: its interagency agreements, fee and budget structure, basic ordering agreements, delivery orders, and member accounts are all annual in character. Special provisions are made to ensure that your unobligated no-year or multi-year funds are available for use as appropriated. These processes are described below.
Planning and budgeting for information services is challenging, to say the least: you want to ensure continuity of critical information services between fiscal years, to have predictable online usage charges, to handle multi-year subscriptions, and to address other issues that arise with publications and electronic information retrieval services. In addition, matching your agency's accounting practices to LC/FEDLINK's can be confusing. If you need assistance, please feel free to call FEDLINK or LC/FSD.
In accordance with federal financial regulations and guidance from GAO, your appropriated one-year funds may only be used for obligations made during that year. You may not carry over one-year funds into the next year in any FEDLINK account. You may not place new orders against your prior year funds. Any orders you place during the current year will be billed to your current account, even if the vendor product is delivered and invoiced after September 30 of that year. This practicebilling to the year in which funds were obligatedis standard for the federal government, but may differ from the way some libraries outside the government handle their funds.
Federal no-year funds are appropriated to be available for obligation in succeeding fiscal years, until amounts are exhausted. When you establish a transfer pay account with no-year funds or when you add no-year funds to an account, it is essential that you correctly identify the appropriation number and amount of the no-year funds on the signature page of your IAG. FEDLINK will ensure that no-year funds you have identified remain available to you.
Federal multi-year funds are available for use until the appropriation expires. Your IAG must indicate the expiration year of your multi-year funds so that LC/FEDLINK can ensure that they remain available until that year. Otherwise, LC/FEDLINK must handle your multi-year funds as one-year funds.
Because LC/FEDLINK handles no-year funds and multi-year funds with availability in the current year in the same way, this Handbook will use the generic term "x-year" for these types of money.
(a) A Current IAG Is Always Necessary
Even if you operate with x-year funds, you must register and sign an IAG with LC in each year you use FEDLINK services. If your services for the upcoming year will be funded solely with the remaining balance of x-year funds in your existing accounts, you will not need to provide a new funds citation on your annual IAG, but you will still need to sign it. This reaffirms the mutual obligations your agency and LC have under the IAG. If you are a direct pay user and your agency has obligated x-year funds on a purchase order under an LC/FEDLINK BOA, you must sign an IAG and be authorized to use the LC/FEDLINK BOA in each year of your funds' availability.
(b) Renewing Service Using a Prior Balance
If you have no new current year funds and must renew service for the upcoming year solely with the remaining x-year balance from your existing accounts, you must indicate this on your annual registration form. Mark a "P" in the funds type column on your registration. If you know the exact x-year balance that is free to move forward, indicate that amount on your registration. If you do not know the exact amount available (because all of the invoices for your current year orders have not been paid), you may wish to identify a token amount to move forward in October and then move the rest when you do know the full amount available. Based on your registration, LC/FEDLINK will issue your IAG for the coming year and, once that IAG is signed, LC/FEDLINK will issue delivery orders to start your service.
(c) Renewing Service Using Both Old and New Funds
If you are transferring new funds to LC/FEDLINK and also expect the balance of your prior year funds to be moved forward, show only your new money on your registration form. Identify the funds type of your new service dollars in the appropriate column on the form. Your prior year balances for information retrieval services will be moved forward later automatically, and your prior year publications balances will be moved forward later upon request.
Because your new funds require a new funds citation from your agency and your prior funds do not, they may not be combined on the same IAG transaction.
(d) Moving Your Balance Forward
If you register with new current year funds, your annual IAG will only show those new funds. FEDLINK will ensure that any unexpended x-year funds balances you have are made available for the current year by amending your IAG. FEDLINK generates a pair of IAG amendments for each member's x-year money move: one amendment reduces the prior year IAG amount and one increases the current year's IAG total.
Electronic Information Retrieval Services
For electronic information retrieval services, FEDLINK will calculate all members' available x-year balances and move the available funds at the beginning of the second quarter, after the final electronic information retrieval invoices for the previous year have cleared. If you do not want these x-year balances moved forward automatically, please contact FFO.
Publications Acquisitions Services
For publications accounts, FEDLINK will not automatically move your x-year balances forward. Because only you know the amount of your book orders still outstanding and can project an amount for serials supplemental and bill later charges, only you can calculate how much of your x-year balance is available to move. Therefore, you must specifically request that FEDLINK move your x-year publications funds and must tell FEDLINK how much to move.
You may either wait until all your current year invoices clear to identify your actual available balance, or you may figure a conservative estimate of the surplus in your current account and have FEDLINK move that amount forward. Either way, you must ensure that sufficient funds remain in your old account to cover all publications ordered during the current year. When you know the amount you want to move forward, submit a Transfer Pay Account Adjustment/IAG Amendment Request to FFO.
(e) Current Year Fee Is Charged
The FEDLINK transfer pay administrative fee will be charged when FEDLINK moves your remaining x-year balances to establish service for you in the new year. For example, if your remaining x-year balance is $1,000, FEDLINK will move $922 into new service dollar accounts, and charge $78 to fees.
FEDLINK understands that you paid a fee on your x-year funds when you originally transferred them to the program. The current year fee is necessary to cover FEDLINK's costs for making your x-year funds available and managing them in the current year: identifying actual balances available, processing IAG amendments, delivery orders, and de-obligations for the old year and the corresponding new IAG amendments, delivery orders, and obligations, processing the new year's invoices, and managing your account.
To make your x-year service dollars go as far as possible, each year you should only transfer to LC/FEDLINK the amounts that you will reasonably be able to spend during that year. This will reduce the "surplus" x-year balance you have in any particular annual period, and reduce the amount you pay in fees when FEDLINK moves your balance forward.
The FEDLINK vendor, FEDLINK, and you bear joint responsibility for managing transfer pay accounts. Checks and balances among all three parties are necessary to ensure that the government receives appropriate goods and services; that the vendor is paid promptly and accurately; and that government funds are obligated, liquidated, and tracked appropriately.
The ultimate responsibility for managing your account remains with you. You receive the goods and services ordered and your agency's appropriation provides the funding and is accountable for your expenditures. The services FEDLINK provides to help you manage your accounts, your responsibilities, those of the vendor, and those of FEDLINK are described in this part of the Handbook.
FEDLINK vendors are responsible for:
Additional vendor responsibilities, such as issuing user IDs and passwords and providing a toll-free member service number, are specified in the vendor's LC/FEDLINK BOA. The vendor cannot provide service in anticipation of your funding adjustments (additions of funds, money moves, or refunds): only service within the not-to-exceed amount of a valid delivery order is authorized.
FEDLINK Fiscal Operations (FFO), LC/C&L and LC/FSD are responsible for:
FEDLINK cannot anticipate what individual items you have on order, what service usage or what IAG amendments you have planned. It is only possible to pay your invoices when you have an IAG established, when valid delivery orders are in place, and when there are sufficient funds in your accounts.
FEDLINK does not handle invoices for direct pay members, but if you are a direct pay member and are having problems with vendors regarding their services or invoicing procedures (not your ability to pay), please contact a FEDLINK contracting officer at LC/C&L for assistance, (202) 707-0461.
You, or your agency's financial office, are responsible for:
FEDLINK vendors submit invoices for transfer pay usage to FFO. Typically, electronic information retrieval service vendors submit bills for the system usage that occurred during the previous month and publications vendors bill for items when they are shipped.
FFO date-stamps all incoming invoices and makes a preliminary examination of them for basic conformance to the LC/FEDLINK BOA. Unacceptable invoices are rejected and returned to the vendor. FFO Accounts Payable staff data-enter your invoices into FEDLINK's SYMIN fiscal system. Invoice processors examine your invoices for compliance with the BOA, striking out unpayable line items or rejecting invoices with unpayable charges. Invoices are posted against your accounts, and rejected or accepted according to your current account authorization status and funding levels. If you do not have a current IAG or current delivery order, FEDLINK will reject your invoices. Similarly, if your funding level is insufficient, FEDLINK will not be able to pay the invoice and will reject it.
The FEDLINK system transmits payment records for batches of invoices to the Library's central accounting system which makes an electronic funds transfer or issues a check to the vendor, as appropriate. FEDLINK sends the vendor a remittance advice that lists all the invoices in the batch payment. The vendor uses this remittance advice to reconcile its accounts receivable.
The actual payment due date for invoices is the 30th day after FEDLINK receives a proper invoice from the vendor. While FFO may process vendor invoices prior to the actual due date, FEDLINK payments to the vendor are not disbursed until due. Terms for interest penalty payments are included in the LC/FEDLINK BOAs, and are similar to the Prompt Payment Act. For late payments for which LC/FEDLINK is responsible, FEDLINK will pay any interest penalties from the FEDLINK budget.
Invoices for users with no current IAG, with no delivery order, or with service under the direct pay option are rejected and returned to the vendor outright. Invoices are also rejected when processing reveals that your account does not have sufficient funds to cover the invoice total. FEDLINK cannot make a partial payment on your invoice. If you have an insufficient funds invoice, FEDLINK will return it to the vendor, who will resubmit it after he has received a delivery order that increases your authorized funding.
You should never pay vendors directly for rejected invoices as this greatly increases the risk that the government will make a double payment. (The vendor may resubmit to FEDLINK the same invoice that you already paid directly.)
When one of your invoices is rejected for insufficient funds, FEDLINK sends you a copy of that invoice with an urgent notice informing you of the requirement to increase funds in your account. All of your invoices that were rejected during a particular statement period are listed in the detail section of your account statement for that period. The ALIX-FS online system (where you can log in to check your account, see below) identifies accounts that have had invoices rejected since the last statement period with an asterisk.
FEDLINK cannot pay invoices that would exceed the cumulative amount authorized on your delivery order; this would exceed your obligation and cause a deficit. If paying a particular invoice would send your account into a deficit, the invoice will be rejected and returned to the vendor. You will receive a copy of that invoice and a notice urging immediate action to move or transfer additional funds to cover the service. In the unusual circumstance that an account deficit occurs because of refunds, payments, account corrections, etc., you must take immediate action to move or transfer funds to cover your debt to LC/FEDLINK.
As an official OCLC network, the terms of the LC/FEDLINK BOA with OCLC require the FEDLINK program to pay OCLC's invoices and then collect reimbursement from members' OCLC accounts. If your actual OCLC usage exceeds your funding authorization, FEDLINK will notify you to move or add funds immediately to cover your usage. If you do not take action, FEDLINK will have to suspend your OCLC service.
When you receive a statement showing a deficit, you must act immediately to cover your outstanding debt. In accordance with the Debt Collection Improvement Act and LC regulations, delinquent debt over 180 days old will be transferred to the Department of the Treasury for collection.
FEDLINK produces regular statements for each of your transfer pay accounts. The statements show in summary and in detail all your delivery order activity (increases and decreases in authorization levels) and all invoice activity against the account since your last statement. Attached to your statements are copies of invoices paid from your account.
For the current fiscal year and the immediate past fiscal year, FFO issues statements every month. Statements for publication accounts are generated mid-month and statements for electronic information retreival and library support services are generated at the end of the month. For all prior year accounts (more than one fiscal year old), FFO issues statements on a quarterly basis. All publication accounts remain open for three fiscal years to accommodate vendor bills and supplemental invoices. If no account activity occurred in the previous quarter or if the account balance is zero, FFO will not generate a statement.
The statement schedule is strictly followed with the exception of final account close out and fiscal year reconciliation. To perform a final account reconciliation, FFO sends a "final invoice call" to vendors and sets a deadline for them to submit final invoices. During this final reconciliation no statements are issued while accounts payable staff review your accounts and make any necessary adjustments. After reconciliation, FEDLINK sends you a final, cumulative statement for each of your transfer pay accounts. During FY99, FEDLINK will be reconciling and closing out all FY94 accounts.
Statements show all the transactions posted since the last statementdelivery orders, invoices, invoices rejected for insufficient funds, and corrections. They do not show pending transactions or outstanding rejected invoices (ones that were rejected in an earlier statement period). The statement detail section is not cumulative for the whole fiscal year: only transactions processed since the last statement date are listed. Before mailing, FEDLINK accounts payable staff review your statements and attach copies of the paid invoices that are listed in the statement's detail section.
On all statements, only paid invoices, posted credits, signed delivery orders, and completed corrections are included in your account balance calculation. It is essential to recognize that account balances on FEDLINK statements only include delivery orders which have actually been issued and invoices which have actually been paid. IAG and delivery order transactions that are pending, invoices which have not been paid, and charges for items which are still on order cannot be shown because they are not yet part of your account.
The detail section of your regular statement lists rejected invoices. They appear as a pair of transactions handled on the same FFO processing date, with the same document descriptions, but with amounts that net to zero: a code 20 transaction when the invoice was charged to your account and a code 25 transaction unposting the invoice and reversing the invoice charge. Invoices rejected for insufficient funds are therefore not included in the total of your activity for the period. Nor are the "bounced" invoices attached to your regular statement; they are sent to you at the time of rejection with a request to take action to cover the invoice charge.
FEDLINK statements are laid out in three sections. The top portion identifies the fiscal year of the service account, your agency and the IAG contact, and the vendor service being reported. The middle portion of the statement is a table which provides summary information about your delivery order activity for the service, invoices paid, and balance remaining at three points in time: amount from the previous statement, amount for the current period, and cumulative amount year-to-date. The summary also shows the percent of funds remaining in your account. The last portion of the statement shows the individual transactions posted to your account during the statement period. Transactions are shown in FFO processing date order. The detail includes:
A sample FEDLINK statement and detailed descriptions of each statement section follow.
(a) Header Information
The top section of a transfer pay statement of account identifies the member, fiscal year, service, and processing period of the report. The phone number of the FEDLINK Fiscal Hotline, (202) 707-4900, is listed for you to call if you have any questions about your statement.
FFO issues monthly statements for current year accounts and quarterly statements for prior year accounts on a staggered schedule. The statement period reflects the dates when FFO processed transactions, not the dates of the vendor's invoices, nor the actual time of your usage. For example, your usage at the end of October is likely to appear on a vendor invoice submitted early in November. FFO will process the invoice soon after it is received, so that it will appear on your November statement. The invoice is due 30 days after receipt; so LC will pay it in December.
Statements are mailed to the IAG contact, your agency's official FEDLINK mailing address. If this individual is not familiar with your actual service usage and therefore cannot effectively review the statement and attached paid invoices, he or she should pass the statement on to a person who can.
This section shows the two-letter service ID for the service (AA), your four-letter FEDLINK ID (ABCD), and your complete IAG number (69-991234.00.ABCD).
(b) Account Summary
The table in the middle of your statement pulls together the totals of your delivery orders, invoices, and balance information for the account overall. The table begins with the bottom-line figures from your last statement, adds to that the total of all of this period's transactions (which are detailed in the lower part of the statement), and gives year-to-date totals. The year-to-date totals will be carried over as the beginning balance on your next statement. The columns in the statement are described below.
This column shows the total obligated to the vendor on delivery orders issued for you. On the sample, member ABCD had $2,500 authorized prior to this statement period, plus a $750 add funds delivery order issued this period, for a new total year-to-date authorized funding level of $3,250.
This column shows the total of invoices paid from your account and credits posted to your account. Rejected invoice amounts are not included in the invoice summary total. On the sample, $800 had been paid to the vendor prior to this statement period, and an additional $1,575 was paid this period, for a total year-to-date expenditure of $2,375.
This column shows your account balance. On the sample, the beginning balance in the member's account at the start of this processing period was $1,700, the amount carried over from the previous statement. (Note that, moving across the table, the beginning delivery order amount of $2,500 minus the invoice amount of $800 equals the balance of $1,700.) The net balance of transactions for this period alone was -$825. It is normal to have a net negative amount for the current period because, after the beginning of the year, in any given period more invoices are usually processed than delivery orders and invoices are negative amounts. Finally, the account's year-to-date ending balance as of the date of the statement is $875.
You can use these summary numbers to analyze your usage patterns. From the sample, member ABCD has spent $2,375 out of a total obligated amount of $3,250, that is, 73% of his total funds have been spent so far this year (invoice summary total divided by DO summary total). The statement shows that only 26.9% of ABCD's funds are left. This December statement shows payments for ABCD's November invoices; only two month's worth of ABCD's current year usage (October and November) has been billed so far. With less than 20% of the year gone by and 73% of his funds expended, it is likely that ABCD will need to add funds to this account soon if this level of usage continues.
(c) Detail this PeriodStatement Columns
The bottom of your statement lists all the transactions posted to your account during the statement period. It does not carry over rejected items from previous statements. Each line of the detail can be broken apart as described below:
The date is the date FFO processed the transaction. The detail section of your statement is sorted by this date. The code indicates the type of transaction; there is a key at the bottom of the statement.
This section shows the particulars about the invoice or delivery order that was processed. The data patterns differ based on whether the document is a delivery order or an invoice, and whether the invoice is for an information retrieval service or a publications service.
Delivery orders signed and issued to the vendors are reflected in this column.
Invoices, credits, rejections and corrections are reflected in this column.
This column shows the balance in your account at the end of each transaction.
This Period's Totals
This is the total of all items in the column. It matches the amount for "This period" in the summary table.
This is the final current balance in your account as of the statement date. It matches the amount in the summary table.
The items on the sample statement are described below. For convenience, the sample shows whole dollar amounts; actual statements reflect payments in dollars and cents.
(d) Detail this PeriodStatement Transaction Lines
Each transaction line on the sample statement line of the detail can be broken apart as described below:
FEDLINK statements are generated on a schedule designed to complement the vendor's invoicing patterns and to balance FEDLINK's system processing load. For the current fiscal year (FY99) and immediate past fiscal year (FY98), FFO issues statements monthly. Statements for publication accounts are generated mid-month and statements for electronic information retreival and library support services are generated the end of the month.
Because vendors must bill the government after they have rendered service, and because the government pays invoices on the 30th day after receipt of a valid invoice, the data on FEDLINK statements may appear not to be current. However, they are as current as they can be based on the vendor's submission of invoice data. FEDLINK has no control over when vendors submit their invoices for payment. FEDLINK encourages vendors to invoice promptly.
Walking through a typical billing cycle illustrates the inherent delay in the government's regular usage/payment/report cycle:
For all prior year accounts (i.e., FY97 - FY95), FFO issues statements in December, March, June and September. Publication accounts remain open for three fiscal years in order to accommodate late vendor bills and supplemental invoices. However, if there has been no new account activity since the last quarterly statement was generated for prior year accounts and if the account balance is zero, statements are not mailed to the IAG Official Contact.
To help minimize the gap between usage and reporting, FEDLINK initiated the ALIX-FS system to give you daily access to your account balances. In addition to this bottom-line information, FEDLINK has recently added electronic statements to the ALIX-FS section of the FLICC Web sitedata files that contain the detail transactions from your statements.
FEDLINK is also working with vendors to obtain electronic versions of the line-item detail from your invoices. FEDLINK already receives members' OCLC usage data in machine readable form and loads it onto the ALIX-FS system as soon as it arrives each month. Using the OCLC data files greatly reduces delays in getting the data you need to manage your OCLC funds wisely. (See Part II, section 3.2.) FEDLINK hopes to add similar files from other vendors to ALIX-FS. FEDLINK sends all members a letter with individualized instructions for accessing ALIX-FS at the beginning of the year; the instructions are reproduced in Section 6, below.
The FEDLINK accounting process is designed to streamline invoice processing and to save costs and improve efficiency but still safeguard the expenditure of government funds. FEDLINK reviews your invoices for compliance with the BOA and for funds sufficiency, but pays them without prior certification from you that you actually received the goods and services billed. FEDLINK relies on periodic sampling of paid invoices and on your exception reports to detect problem payments. You are the key to this process.
To be sure that FEDLINK payments are accurate and that the government actually received what has been paid for, you must review your statements and report any errors to FEDLINK. FEDLINK statements are not intended as a substitute for your own record of orders placed under the not-to-exceed (NTE) ceiling amount on the delivery order issued to the vendor. One of the primary purposes for the statement is to enable you to reconcile payments against your own records of orders placed or your online system usage.
If an invoice does not belong to your agency, should be posted to a different fiscal year, shows items/services that you did not receive, or shows any charge in dispute, you must notify FEDLINK immediately. FEDLINK will process a correction against your account or seek a credit from the vendor, as appropriate. FFO Accounts Payable staff will help you resolve account problems or discrepancies.
Send FFO a Problem Report Form with copies of the problem invoice or statement and a brief description of the issue. When the problem is resolved, the correction will appear as a code 40 transaction or a code 20 invoice credit on the your statement. The Problem Report Form is included in the Forms Section this Handbook.
The FEDLINK Services Directory, available on the FLICC/FEDLINK Web site contains descriptions of all FEDLINK vendor services and vendor contact information. The names, phone numbers, and brief descriptions of all current FEDLINK vendors are listed in Part II of this Handbook. Although the pricing pages or "Schedule Bs" from the vendors' BOAs are too lengthy to be included in the Directory, FEDLINK will send you copies for the services you use. FEDLINK also mails vendor pricing information to direct pay members.
Please keep the Schedule B pricing section with your file on your service account. You need to refer to it to check that the vendors have charged you correctly. You also will use the pricing information to project service usage and to plan new orders.
(a) Moving Money Between Accounts
If you have used vendor services and accrued rejected invoices or deficits, you must take action to increase the funding level in your account. If you anticipate that upcoming orders or your regular usage for the remainder of the fiscal year will take you over the current funding level in your account, you must also take action to increase your balance.
If you have a surplus in another transfer pay account of the same fiscal year, you may reallocate your funds by submitting a Transfer Pay Account Adjustment Form for an IAG amendment to move funds. The IAG team will execute the amendment and generate delivery orders for you. LC/C&L will issue delivery orders that reduce funds in the account(s) you specified and increase the funding level for the vendor account that had insufficient funds.
The vendor may then resubmit your rejected invoices.
(b) Decreasing Funds
When you decrease the funds in an account through a refund or a money move, you must be sure to leave enough funds behind to cover all your anticipated charges from that vendor. Because the vendor will bill for your online time and orders placed before the delivery order decreasing funds was issues, you must check with the vendor to be certain that the new, lower funding level will be sufficient to cover all outstanding charges. The request form for a refund or a money move requires that you certify that you have checked with the vendor and that remaining funds will be sufficient.
(c) Adding New Funds
If you do not have enough funds in another FEDLINK account of the same fiscal year to cover your rejected invoice (plus any other incoming invoices from the same vendor that are also likely to bounce), you must add new funds to you IAG. You must also add new funds if your usage projections or planned orders will take you above your current funding ceiling. Submit a New Service/New Funds form to add funds. The IAG amendment to add funds will require signature and a funds citation. When your add funds delivery order is issued, the vendor may resubmit rejected invoices for payment.
To help you manage your funds, FEDLINK provides three levels of electronic fiscal reporting on the ALIX-FS members-only section of the FLICC Web site: daily account balances, statement detail data, and usage data from participating vendors. Your ALIX-FS data is password protected so that you can only view information for your own accounts, and so that no other users can view your data. Your ALIX-FS user name and password and instructions for accessing the system will be mailed to you when your new accounts are established each year. You may release the password to staff in your agency who need to check balances and monitor service usage. Contact the FEDLINK Fiscal Hotline (202) 707-4900 with questions about ALIX-FS.
You can see a daily report of your accounts for FY92 forward. The report gives your account balances as of the previous statement, the sum of all transactions posted since the last statement, and the new current balances for your accounts. The report is summary information only. Your statement detail is included in the statement data file and copies of your paid invoices will continue to be attached to your statements. You may view the balance report on screen, print it, or save it to disk.
The account balances only include posted and paid delivery order and invoice transactions. Pending IAG transactions and delivery orders that have not yet been issued are not included. Invoices rejected for insufficient funds are not calculated into the balance or included in the figure for your usage since the last statement. If invoices have been rejected for insufficient funds since your last statement, your account is marked with an asterisk. The "*" is a reminder that you must take immediate steps to amend your IAG to cover your rejected invoices. It only appears if invoices have been rejected in the period since the last statement; there is no mark for invoices rejected earlier in the fiscal year.
FEDLINK is pleased to provide an electronic version of your statement data to help you manage your accounts and analyze your spending patterns. Your printed statements and copies of your paid invoices will still be mailed to you, of course, but now you can download a data file that has all of your delivery orders and invoice transactions for all of your services. With this data in machine-readable form you'll be able to manipulate it to monitor your available funds, to make budget projections, to charge back to users in your agency, and so forth.
(a) Downloading the File
Your statement detail file is cumulative for the current year plus the immediate prior fiscal years: records for all the statements FFO generates for you every month are added to the end of the file.
FEDLINK adds a sequence number to each record consecutively throughout the file. By noting the final sequence number in your last download, you can identify the records that have been added to the file when you download it the following month.
The data is in ASCII comma-quote-delimited format for you to load into a database or spreadsheet program. In this format, commas appear between the fields, text fields are surrounded by double quotes, date fields and dollar fields are not surrounded by quotes
Because it contains data for all your transactions and can grow quite large, FEDLINK compresses or "zips" the file. The files are named with your library's 4 letter FEDLINK ID, plus "stmt.exe" (eg: abcdstmt.exe).x
Below are instructions for downloading & un-archiving the statement archive files.
(b) Data Fields
The data file contains the same fields that are printed on your statement (which are explained in Section 4.1 of the Handbook) plus a sequence number to help you manipulate the records. From ALIX-FS you may print or download a file called "Data Description" (see Fig. 17) that gives the exact structure of the statement data file (field names, lengths, types). Your statement data fields are:
(c) Manipulating the Data
Sorting the Records
You can sort your data by service, fiscal year, user ID, transaction type, or any other field, and then re-sort the file back into its original order using the sequence number field.
Separating Fiscal Years and Services
You may wish to divide the records into separate databases for different fiscal years and services. This will make it easier to calculate the running balance in an account, to identify usage associated with particular user IDs, to analyze monthly spending patterns, etc.
Identifying Outstanding Rejected Invoices
Your rejected invoices all have a transaction code 25. After you load your data into a database or a spreadsheet, you could extract the rejects and identify their invoice numbers. You can then search the file to determine whether invoices with those numbers were subsequently paid.
Rejected invoices that do not have a code 20 transaction with a posted date later than the reject date are still outstanding. With this information, you can take action to amend your IAG to cover the outstanding amounts so the vendor can resubmit the invoices and be paid.
Updates to the Detail File
The statement detail files are updated after each FEDLINK statement cycle. FEDLINK recommends you download the file and check for updates on or about the 3rd of each month.
An electronic version of the line item detail from the vendor's invoices makes it practical to perform other analysies that help you improve your library operations and quantify the benefits of information services to your agency. For example, you could track individual orders for book and serial titles, or identify which particular databases from an online system are most important to your agency.
Member-specific OCLC usage data in ASCII comma-quote-delimited format has been available on ALIX-FS since 1994 (see Section 3.1 (d) in Part 2 of this Handbook). FEDLINK is working to get service usage data from additional vendors, and will make special announcements as the invoice detail for other services becomes available through ALIX-FS.
Members may access the ALIX-FS system through the FLICC/FEDLINK Web site. To access the system: