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MANAGING YOUR GRANT AND CONTRACT FUNDS. Instruction & Curriculum Leadership PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR’S Handbook August 2009. Life cycle of a grant. Proposal Award Opening a Banner Fund Spending appropriately Covering overages Fiscal reporting Closing the account .

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managing your grant and contract funds


Instruction & Curriculum Leadership




life cycle of a grant
Life cycle of a grant
  • Proposal
  • Award
  • Opening a Banner Fund
  • Spending appropriately
  • Covering overages
  • Fiscal reporting
  • Closing the account
roles and responsibilities
Roles and Responsibilities

Ultimate Responsibility for the Sponsored Project in an Academic Environment lies with the Principal Investigator (PI)


Manage Project Correctly - Know Sponsor Requirements

  • Personnel for daily operations
  • Budget
  • Appropriate charges
  • Stop expenditures
  • Monitor timelines
  • Provide programmatic information
  • Certify and Approve Effort
  • Follow university policies and sponsor guidelines
  • Possible Over-Expenditures
roles and responsibilities1
Roles and Responsibilities


Support to assist project with:

  • Training personnel
  • Purchasing processes
  • HR action support
  • WTE oversight
  • Budget oversight
  • U of M Policies and procedures
  • Effort Certification process
  • Possible over expenditures

Research Support Services Pre Award assistance:

    • Proposal
    • Budget Development
    • Advance Account requests
    • Award
    • Sub Contracts

Grants Accounting Office

Post Award Assistance:

  • Explain Requirements
  • Set up index, budget, positions, HR salary splits/reallocations, cost share
  • Budget Revision Restrictions
  • Monitor budget and timelines
  • Invoice (bill) sponsor
  • Review & approve certain charges
  • Respond to PI’s questions and need for assistance and support
  • Interact with sponsor for billing issues, financial reports, and clarifications
pre award who handles what
Pre-Award - Who handles what

Research Support Services

Cathy Awsumb Federal grants proposal submissions

Mable Dixon State of Tennessee proposal submissions, contracts, agreements, and subcontracts to the university

Angela Fair Sponsored internships and subcontracts from the University

Judy Faris Proposals involving pre K-12 school systems, identification of sources and proposal development

Susie Hayes Budget Development

Deborah Hernandez Corporate and foundation proposals, infrastructure and multidisciplinary grants

Jacqueline Reid Contract Review, export controls compliance

David Whipple Research incentive pay, indirect cost returns

Phyllis Wright Proposal, advance, and award status; distribution of funding award

post award who handles what
Post Award – Who handles what

Grants and Contracts Accounting

Kendra Tillis – Grant Accountant assigned to ICL to assist the PI and dept in achieving the statement of work of the sponsored project, while maintaining sufficient fiscal controls to ensure compliance with 1) terms and conditions of the award, as well as state, local, and federal regulations; 2) generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP); 3) university business policies and procedures

Kendra can be reached at ext 3265 or via email at

After your award has been approved and processed in RSS, or an advance account approved, you will receive email notification from Phyllis Wright in RSS with award status information. The grant accountant will receive email notification also. This action will move your award from Pre Award to Post Award status. The grant accountant will review award specifications, set up the budget in Banner and assign you an index. It is highly recommended that you meet with your grant accountant at this time to discuss university and sponsor requirements, verify positions needed, etc.

Linda Heide - Manager, Grants and Contracts Accounting

creating a new position pooled positions
Creating a New Position(Pooled Positions)
  • Check Banner for available salary funds
  • Submit pool position setup form to Grant Accountant – Form FP-02 New Position Detail
  • Grant Accountant will setup and email new position # to PI for use on hiring documents
  • Pooled positions consist of:

- Graduate Assistants (account 61257 or 61657)

- Student Workers (account 61410)

- Temporary Employees (account 61375, 61675)

creating a new position single permanent positions
Creating a New Position (Single - Permanent Positions)
  • Check Banner for available salary funds
  • PI/Dept initiates new single position in workForum: (form FP-02 attached in the workforum system)
  • Grants Accounting – Budget Approval thru workForum , setup and enter new position #
  • PI/Dept will continue with HR process in workforum after receive approval and position #
  • Single Positions typically hired on ICL grants: Project Coor, Project Asst, Office Coordinator….
faculty salary on sponsored project
Faculty Salary on Sponsored Project

Faculty salary - summer only

  • Verify the amount of summer salary allowed and if it is budgeted (account code – 61254, 61255)
  • Currently faculty can earn up to 33 1/3% of their salary during the summer
  • Use Faculty Summer Compensation Authorization & Payment Request form for summer pay

Research Incentive Pay (

Faculty may recoup up to 50% of salary recovered to the department as incentive pay

  • Must obtain Chair/Dean approval
  • Must consider department needs first
  • Use Research Incentive Payment Request form
allowable costs
Allowable costs
  • Allowed by the sponsor
  • Allocable to the project
  • Reasonable and prudent costs
  • Consistent costs
  • University policies and regulations
  • Sponsor guidelines and restrictions
  • OMB Circular A-21

Travel must adhere to University policy, including international travel

  • If travel is involved (allowed) in the project

- Make sure funds are budgeted in the travel pool 73000

food and beverages
Food and Beverages
  • Generally not allowed, however some sponsors allow - depends on the purpose of award
  • Entertainment specifically not allowed
  • Alcohol not allowed
  • Justify, justify, gain approval
supplies and equipment must be allowable expenses
Supplies and Equipment(must be allowable expenses)
  • All purchases regardless of the dollar amount must be submitted online through Tigerbuy
    • Items $5,000 or over, sole source justification or bid process
    • Please check budget on Banner before keying in requisition. Also verify account code when keying in requisition account information
    • Approval for payment is handled electronically by entering a receipt in Tigerbuy
    • To gain access to Tigerbuy, PI must attend Tigerbuy Approval Training
    • Purchase equipment items during the project year and not at the end of the project year. Remember: supplies/equipment items are to support your operations during the year.
    • Equipment purchased using university funds including grant project funds is not the personal property of the PI. When a PI leaves the University, all equipment including laptops should be returned to the department or the sponsor.
contract services
Contract Services

Hiring consultants or individuals to work on your project

  • Contract services or agreements between the University and any external party:
    • Where the fee is less than $2,000, utilize the Request for Payment to Individual or Contractor form and forward to the Accounting Office

(An individual currently employed or have been employed within the last six months cannot have a payment processed via this method)

    • Where the fee is $2,000 or more, utilize Procurement Services forms

For guidelines and Procurement Services forms:

review monthly expenditures
Review Monthly Expenditures
  • Review monthly university expenditures in Banner INB for accuracy (FRIGITD, FRIGTRD)
  • Process timely corrections when errors found in salary and non-salary expenses
  • Monitor subcontracts and submit invoices for payment in a timely manner
  • Monitor tuition charges, contact Bursar’s asap if incorrect charges are identified and notify Grant Accountant
  • PI is responsible for over spending
cost share
Cost Share
  • Grant Accountant will provide cost share index and set up salary portion only
  • PI/Dept will set up budget for cost share thru Financial Planning
  • Charge appropriate expenditures to cost share index
  • Monitor cost share account
budget revisions
Budget Revisions

Budget Revisions are needed when changes in research occur

  • Budget revisions may be limited to a percentage change, dollar value, or line item without sponsor approval. Grant Accountant will determine authority to make change – sponsor or U of M
  • If sponsor approval is required, PI must email request to the sponsor noting: How much, from what line(s) to what line(s), for what purpose, index and account codes (Reminder: cc Grant Accountant and Business Officer on email request)
  • Upon receiving sponsor approval, PI can process the BR in Banner, Grants Accounting will approve
effort certification
Effort Certification

Certification of effort is required for those paid on a sponsored program or University cost share

  • Employees required to certify receive email notification with instructions to certify effort electronically through the portal
  • PI’s must certify and approve their own effort
  • Employees should certify their own effort
  • PI ‘s must approve certifications

If employee is unavailable to certify: PI (as the responsible person with knowledge of the employees work) can certify and approve the employees effort

  • Changes are noted through comments
  • Dept chairs have access to review but do not need to approve effort
  • Certification occurs 3 times a year, in Jan ( for July – Dec ), May ( for Jan-April ), and July (for May and June – 12 month employees)

For assistance, contact your department Business Officer, Ora Taylor-Strowder

Effort Certification policy information located at:


It is extremely important to monitor your budget often to ensure you do not overspend

  • If after careful review, and thorough investigation from the Grants Accounting office, it is determined you have overspent:
  • The Grant Accountant will notify the Business Officer requesting an index to cover the over expenditures
  • The Business Officer will immediately notify the Chair and PI of the over expended balance
  • Over expenditures will first be charged to the PI individual indirect cost recovery (IDCR) account. If there is no PI, IDCR account available, or if the PI’s IDCR is insufficient to cover the charges, the department and/or college must assume financial responsibility. (Reductions in anticipated research incentive pay to PI’s may be considered as a means to recoup losses to department resulting from overspending )
renew your grant project

Four to six months prior to project year end date, begin the proposal submission process to renew your project

  • Meet with Chair to discuss proposal, course buy out, incentive payment requests, etc.
  • Meet with Susie Hayes in RSS for budget development
  • Complete and submit Proposal Summary Form with proposal/ budget to Chair, Dean’s office for approval. Forward to RSS
  • Submit appropriate documents to Sponsor as requested
  • Submit Request for Advance Account form to RSS if project award has not been finalized prior to project begin date. Note: PI must request a formal Letter of Intent to Award from the Sponsoring agency. Attach letter of intent to the Request for Advance Account form for approval
project renewal assigned a new index who to contact
Project Renewal – Assigned A New Index (who to contact)
  • Many of our projects are continued/renewed yearly and a new index # is assigned each year. Upon receiving new index # from the Grant Accountant, immediately contact the following offices to cancel your old index and provide them with the new index #:
    • Telecommunications –
    • Mail Services –
    • Copier Vending –
    • COE Dean’s Office/Copy Codes –
    • Procurement Services website – P Card Users

Additional Items to Remember

    • When you receive a new index , you must also request new position numbers for temp positions including graduate assistants and student workers – Complete and submit form FP-02 to Grant Accountant
    • Cell Phone Users: Those with sponsor approval for cell phone expenses, please complete the Cell Phone Allowance Request/Change form located on the Human Resources (HR) website.
grant closeout procedure
Grant Closeout Procedure
  • Submit final programmatic reports
  • Cancel P-cards, copy codes, mail services, telephone services, copier vending; STOP SPENDING BY END DATE
  • Monitor salary obligations, ensure grant employees have exhausted annual leave balances prior to grant expiring
  • Process Separation and Clearance (online and hard copy) for departing employees to terminate positions, or makes plans for those who will be moved to a new project
  • Ensure all travel has been completed and reimbursed
  • Standing PO’s - liquidate (travel and purchasing)
  • End sub contracts – process final invoices
  • Determine if equipment will be returned to sponsor, or maintained with the university
  • Notify Grant Accountant if there will be obligations that may be outstanding and due to come thru shortly after project termination date
important tips
Important Tips

Teamwork makes it all possible

  • Establishpositive communication and working relationships with your team of experts in Grants Accounting, Research Support, your Business Officer and Department Staff
  • Build and foster positive relationships with contacts in Human Resources, Accounting, Purchasing, etc.
    • There’s a lot to remember and no one can know it all
    • Ask, and don’t assume
    • Use the resources available
    • Acknowledge mistakes, assume responsibility, and seek resolution


important federal documents
Important Federal Documents
  • OMB Circular A-21 (established the principles for determining costs applicable to grants, contracts and other agreements with colleges and universities. These principles are to be used as a guide in the pricing of fixed price agreements and apply to direct costs and indirect costs)
  • OMB Circular A-110 (provide a public declaration of the standards to be used by federal agencies and colleges and universities in the administration of grants and other agreements. This does not include contracts that are administered under procurement laws and regulations)
  • OMB Circular A-133 (state audit requirements and provides policy guidance to federal agencies and colleges and universities regarding the institutions’ financial records, internal control structure, and compliance with applicable laws and regulations)
omb circular a 21
OMB Circular A-21

Allowable and Consistent Costs

  • A cost is allowable if
  • It conforms to any limitations or exclusions set forth in these principles or in the sponsored agreement as to types or amounts of cost items (OMB Circular A-21, Section C.)
  • A cost is consistent if

- The costs incurred for the same purpose, in like

circumstances, are either direct costs only or F & A costs only with respect to final cost objectives (OMB Circular A-21, Section C.11.)

omb circular a 211
OMB Circular A-21

Allocable Costs

  • A cost is allocable if

-The goods or services involved are chargeable or assignable to such cost objectives in accordance with relative benefits received or other equitable relationship (OMB Circular A-21, Section C.4.)

  • Considerations in determining if the cost is allocable

- It is incurred solely to advance the work under the

sponsored agreement

- It benefits both the sponsored agreement and other work of the institution

- It is necessary to the overall operation of the institution and is deemed to be assignable in part to sponsored projects

omb circular a 212
OMB Circular A-21

Reasonable Costs

  • A cost is reasonable if
    • The nature of the goods or services acquired or applied, and the amount involved therefore, reflect the action that a prudent person would have taken under the circumstances prevailing at the time the decision to incur the cost was made (OMB Circular A-21, Section C.3.

Considerations in determining reasonableness

    • Cost is necessary for the operation of the institution of performance of an award
    • Cost is consistent with institutional polices
omb a 21 unallowable costs
OMB A-21 Unallowable Costs

Unallowable Costs (Section J)

  • Unallowable costs-specific costs not allowable for reimbursement under the cost principles:
    • Alcoholic beverages
    • Bad debts
    • Contingency reserves
    • Entertainment
    • Fines and penalties
    • Operating interest, fund raising, investment management
    • Some advertising and public relations
    • Alumni activities
    • Commencement and convocation
    • Automobiles furnished for personal use
    • Lobbying activities
    • Losses on other sponsored grants and contracts
    • Memberships in civic, community, country club or social or dining club or organization