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ALBE* accounts have been frozen from the end of September 2021 accounting period.  This reflects the University’s view that the threat of emergency Covid-19 restrictions has passed and any new expenditure incurred to adapt to emerging ways of working is likely to be viewed as new normal running costs.  Please contact your School Finance Manager if you become aware of any new expenditure which may still be eligible.  While ALBE accounts are frozen, amounts charged there will remain in place until the University is in position to assess the overall financial impact of the pandemic. Specific requests for funding for material Covid-19 initiatives (eg. testing facilities) may still be brought forward for approval by the Planning and Resources Committee (PRC).

Source of Funds (SoF) ALBE
SoF ALBE has been set up to allow departments and the University to track previously unforeseen costs resulting from the Covid-19 pandemic, funding for which has not been otherwise approved.  Costs incurred are expected to be necessary, reasonable and proportionate to the circumstances that gave rise to them and should only be recorded in ALBE to the extent that they:
  • exceed any departmental savings arising as a result of the pandemic/over the period since March 2020; or
  • are not recoverable from other sources.  
ALBE is primarily a holding account: charging costs to ALBE does not guarantee that the Central University will cover them. Once there is greater visibility on the path of the pandemic and the aggregate financial impact on the University, the question as to how these costs should be shared between additional allocations from the Chest or from departmental reserves shall be considered.  The Central University’s ability to cover Covid-19 costs, will depend on amounts charged to ALBE, as well as wider impacts of Covid-19 on the University’s finances (e.g. impact on student fee income, Cambridge Assessment and CUP, etc.).  The lower the amount charged to ALBE overall, the greater the proportion that the University will be able to cover, in due course. 
It is important that departments and institutions take a consistent approach to using ALBE in line with this guidance. School and Non-School Finance Managers will monitor expenditure charged to ALBE and other specific Covid-19 SoF in support of these objectives and to highlight any emerging disparities.  Emerging questions on specific matters which require interpretation of this guidance, should be referred to Finance Managers in the first instance.
Page last updated 16-Dec-20

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