Business Manual logo


Accounting Services Section (ACT)


Effective Date: 01/01/1999

Last Modified Date: 06/21/1999


FRS identifies an account by a sequence of numbers called an account number. The account number in FRS is a 10-digit number (x-xxxxx-xxxx). The first digit (X-xxxxx-xxxx) refers to the ledger code to which an account belongs. The next five digits, together with the first digit (X-XXXXX-xxxx), identify a unique account. The final four digits (x-xxxxx-XXXX) identify a specific account control or object code.

The central University offices and a number of campus schools and/or departments have a need to know the budget, purpose, and department codes displayed on forms authorizing payroll payments for routing, approval, and electronic data processing editing purposes. The following format has been developed to meet that need.

Ten-Digit Account Number Attribute Information
Ledger Acct ID Object Budget Purpose Dept

Any department-designed forms that incorporate University account numbers should be designed in accordance with the above format.

Pieces of the Puzzle


The first digit in the account number refers to the ledger to which an account belongs. The following is a list of values and descriptive titles:

General Ledger Description
0 General Ledger
Subsidiary Ledger Description
1 Current Unrestricted State Funds (revenues)
2 Current Unrestricted State Funds (expenditures)
3 Auxiliary Enterprises and Totally Receipt Supported Activities
4 and 5 Sponsored Research
6 Other Current Restricted and Unrestricted
8 Plant Funds
9 Agency Funds

Account Identifier

The account identifier is an assigned value that, along with the first digit (ledger), indicates a unique account.

Object Codes and Account Controls

Object codes are used to record expense/revenue in the Subsidiary Ledger and are referred to as subcodes. A listing of expenditure subcodes can be found in ACT Appendix 2. Account controls are used to record activity in the General Ledger. A listing of account controls can be found in ACT Appendix 4.

Expenditure Object Codes. The expenditure object code (subcode) hierarchy of classification is as follows:

V000 Class Object
VV00 Major Object
VVV0 Minor Object
VVVV UNC-Chapel Hill Object

The broadest classification of expenditures is by class object. Only the UNC-Chapel Hill object level (4th digit) is available for assignment by the UNC-Chapel Hill Business Office. The higher level objects are standardized and controlled by the UNC General Administration. Although budgets may be established at higher object levels, all expense transactions must be coded at the UNC-Chapel Hill object level. Refer to ACT Appendix 2, Expenditure Subcode (Object) Listing, and ACT Appendix 3, Expenditure Subcode (Object) Definitions.

Revenue Object Codes. Revenue object codes (subcodes) are assigned by the University Controller, and are not selected for use by University departments.

Account Controls. An account control is a four-digit number used to record activity in the General Ledger. Account control ranges are defined as follows:

See also ACT Appendix 4, General Ledger Account Control Listing.

Budget Code

The single-digit attribute "University budget code" is representative of a five-digit code assigned by the Office of State Budget to identify various State funds. In the FRS system, this information is known as an attribute (see ACT Policy 4) in the account number sequence. The University budget codes and corresponding State budget codes are as follows:

University Budget Code Description State Budget Code
1 Academic Affairs 16020
2 Health Affairs 16021
8 Area Health Education Centers Program 16022
0 Institutional Trust Funds, Special Funds, Endowment Funds, and Other Funds  


The purpose code attribute identifies the broad institutional purpose to which a transaction relates. Purpose codes are designated by the Office of State Budget and/or the University, and apply uniformly to State, trust, and contract and grant funds. A detailed listing and general definition of purpose code numbers is presented in ACT Appendix 1, General Purpose Code Definitions. In the FRS system this information is used as an attribute of the subsidiary ledger account number.


This attribute segment of the account number identifies the activity or departmental cost center. A department number is used for State, trust, and contract and grant funds in the FRS system.

The FRS system provides unlimited attributes for all accounts. All attributes may be viewed by University departments online using the selection key to view the translation values.

Return to Accounting Services Section Contents

Return to Business Manual Table of Contents