FAQs for Coordinators

Pledging by Paper Form

Can employees give offline?
Yes, there is a paper pledge form located at www.doas.ga.gov/sccp under Employee Information or www.gasccp.org under Donors – Donor Materials.  Anyone is welcome to use the form to make a pledge.

Do I have to enter paper pledges into the website to get them to appear?
No, our processors will do that for you.  We have a paper pledge form for employees to fill out and you send them in to the address located on the cover form (Campaign Coordinator Report).  Our processors enter those in manually and it’ll appear on the website within 7-10 days.

Can part-time employees pledge?
If an employee is on the SWD plan and receives a paycheck twice a month, they’ll be processed just like a regular employee so there’s no issue with pledging.  For hourly employees, if they want to make a pledge we recommend directing them to make a one-time donation on the website for credit card/e-check or by paper pledge for check/cash.

Contractors

Can contractors contribute or participate?
The purpose of SCCP is to raise money but also to contribute to a sense of community, so if you have contractors working alongside regular employees, we do not have a policy that they must be excluded from participating in fundraising events (like, buying a hotdog).  If they want to contribute directly, they can do a one-time pledge by filling out the paper pledge form, write CONTRACTOR in the ID box, check the CHECK or CASH box with the total amount and write in the charity in the designation section.  We don’t have a problem with contractors making one time donations.  But if they’re federal employees, they may need to donate through the CFC campaign.  They can also make a pledge through the website and select one time donation of either credit card or e-check.

Events

Can I plan a charityfest?
Sure!  Give us a call if you want assistance in planning a charity fair.  We can provide you with help on inviting charities and promoting the event.  This year we will not be able to provide supplies (soda, popcorn, helium) but we do have a large supply of balloons if you would like some sent to you by mail.

Can I hold events after October 31?
Yes, you may.  We ask that fundraising money be sent in by December 31, but if it’s turned in by January 15 the funds can still be processed for the current campaign.  The most important thing is to send in all pledges, including paper ones, by the end of November.  We start processing payroll files in mid-December so it’s very important to receive those in a timely manner.

Please explain this statement:  “All charities are equal participants in the campaign and one must not be given preference or market exclusively.” 

This statement is meant to address an issue that happened in the prior campaign where groups were exclusively supporting a United Way so employees got the impression that United Way ran the campaign and were their only option for donating.  Designating some fundraising money to a specific charity was something that happened last year, but coordinators just wrote it in on the form by hand.  This year, we’ve added a section for that, but the option was always there.  If something was designated, it was honored.  Designating a charity does not override your ability to be fair to campaign charities.  Just make sure your population is aware that they have the entire listing to choose from and can find the list on the website in PDF form or via the search tool.  If you have a charityfest, invite a wide range of charities to participate.

Payroll Deductions

When do payroll deductions start?
January 2015

Can new employees pledge online?
Yes, there is no pre-assigned username (they will need their ID#), so employees can create an account and pledge regardless of how long they’ve been working.  Of course, they can also give by a paper form as well.

What happens if an employee leaves the agency before January when their payroll deduction would start?
There is no attempt to collect by the charity.  The payroll deduction is simply rendered invalid.  If the person switches agencies and they are on the same payroll (like between different PeopleSoft payroll state agencies) then the deduction will remain intact.  If they switch to a different entity, like to the University System, then it won’t carry over and that pledge will remain uncollected for the remainder of the year.

Can I customize how my payroll deduction happens?
No.  State agency employees in PeopleSoft agencies will have their payroll deduction monthly on the opposite check from their health insurance deduction.  This is to balance out the deductions, so the deduction is once monthly for 12 total deductions.  There is not a customized deduction option since this is a mass upload by shared services.  For the university system or state agencies, if they want to give in two payments, encourage them to just make a one-time donation in the form of an e-check, paper check or credit card online.  Georgia Tech or UGA may offer different options for their employees, but they manage their giving site separately from ours.

Do employees have to cancel their prior year pledges if they do not plan on pledging for the current campaign?
No, nothing needs to be done.  All pledges are wiped on January 1 for the prior year and we upload only the new pledges, so nothing is renewed or duplicated automatically.

Charities

I don’t see the charity I want to pledge to on the list.  How do I get it added?
Charities must apply during our application window from December-February for the next year’s campaign.  If a charity is not currently in the campaign, they would have to apply, be accepted and then could participate in the next campaign.  If a charity is interested in being on our contact list for when the application period opens, then email sccp@doas.ga.gov and we will add them.

Can fundraising money be designated to a charity or can it only be put in undesignated funds?
Yes, you may designate funds to a specific charity, but it is advised that you have transparent disclosure to where the proceeds will be going in your marketing material for the event.  On the Campaign Coordinator Report form, make sure you indicate the total fundraising money being submitted, and if you want to designate to a charity, list it in the Fundraising Money section. If you don’t designate, it goes into undesignated funds which are distributed to all charities with designations pro-rata.

When do payments start to my charity?
Payments happen quarterly starting in April.  Then July, October, and December/January 2016.  Payments happen after they are collected from the state agencies/colleges.

Can I call and check with the charity that they’ve received my pledge?
The charity should send an acknowledgement if the employee has asked for one.  If they call later to verify their pledge was received, the charity will most likely not be able to verify this due to all pledges being aggregated into one large payment per charity per quarter.  An employee’s name is not attached to those payments.  It comes from SCCP.  This is why saying YES to the acknowledgement is important.  We do research these questions when they come during the year and we do verify a payment has been made to the charity and it includes the sum in question, but the charity never sees a list of names when it is made.  It’s purely on our admin side.

If a charity is part of a federation, how much overhead does the federation take before sending the gift to the charity?
This can vary depending on the federation.  Most are extremely low or nonexistent, like Local Independent Charities of America ( 1%) or United Way of Metro Atlanta (0%).

Donations and Tax Exemption

Do you have a letter I can provide for local businesses to get items?
SCCP is not a tax-exempt entity, although it does benefit charities, therefore SCCP does not have any authority to provide any letters supporting the ability to write-off a donation for tax purposes.  Like the raffle question, the ability to accept/solicit donations is left to the agency’s discretion upon the advice of their counsel, but SCCP does not provide any solicitation letter.

Can I get a tax receipt from SCCP to show employees gave through purchasing fundraising items?
Like noted above, SCCP is not a tax exempt entity in and of itself, so it does not issue receipts for tax deductible donations for fundraising.

Fundraising

Is there a form employees need to fill out when they buy a ticket for a fundraiser, like Casual Days?  Or do they need a receipt for tax purposes?
There’s no need to get a pledge form for each dollar.  Most fundraisers go to the general SCCP undesignated pot.  When you fill out the coordinator report form, the fundraiser money section only has to be filled out with the total amount enclosed.  The designated section is optional and if nothing is written there it is assumed undesignated.  Because it isn’t designated to a specific charity, and SCCP itself is not a nonprofit charity entity but a public program, then we don’t have the authority to issue any kind of letter.

When is my fundraising money viewable in the Give at the Office site?
There is a 7-10 day delay in that appearing from the day it is sent.  This is due to it being processed by the bank then logged into our system.

Can I send in fundraising money as it comes in or do I have to wait until the end of the campaign?
You don’t have to stress over keeping a stash of money!  You can deposit that money as often as you want.  Just take it to a Suntrust, deposit it into our account number on the coordinator report form and mail in the deposit slip with the completed form.  Don’t mail cash or money/pledges directly to us – send it to the address on the coordinator report form according to its instructions.

Can I send in fundraising money after December 31?
Yes, but we ask that all paper pledges be submitted by November 30.  Fundraising money can continue to be submitted in December – January 15.  We finalize the campaign numbers in early spring, so we can still count that as part of your organization total. Just please let me know if you have money to submit in January so we can make sure it gets in.

My agency wants to have a raffle.  What is the SCCP policy on this?
Nothing in the SCCP statute or from SCCP guidelines offers guidance specifically on raffles, one way or another.  Our legal department prefers that each agency make that judgment for themselves based on advice from their own legal counsel.  SCCP’s statute deals with how charities are accepted into the program and how we handle payroll deduction.  Anything outside that, you’ll have to operate under the advisement of your local leadership/legal team.  An agency’s approval for an activity should come from their commissioner/director/president, not from DOAS.

Correcting Errors on Pledges

I have an employee that selected an option other than monthly for payroll deduction at a state agency.  What happens to this pledge?
This is what we consider user error, so this is part of the reason we do the email validations.  They ok an annual amount on the validations that go out.  That annual amount will end up being deducted according to their status and where they work based on that fixed schedule.  So, if someone picks 10 months or 26 paychecks, they’ll have it deducted over 12 monthly payments regardless to total the annual amount. We plan on sending out letters to everyone this impacts and explaining it to them at the end of the campaign, which will let them cancel if they want.

I have an employee that made a duplicate pledge.  What do I do?
Send an email to sccp@doas.ga.gov and we will have the duplicate pledge removed.  Even if an employee doesn’t notify us of a duplicate, we run reports to identify potential duplicates at the end of the campaign and reconcile those before anything is processed.