The Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP) negotiates and approves grant and contract awards, authorizes setting up of university restricted fund numbers, negotiates and issues subawards to other institutions and organizations, assists with award management actions including prior approvals required by the sponsor, and assists PIs with final closeout of their awards. Any document requiring an official signature related to sponsored programs must be signed by an authorized representative in OSP. For financial reports (federal form SF425) and invoices the authorized representative signatures would be in the Accounting Office.
The Award Negotiation and Acceptance stage involves the activities that take place after a proposal is submitted, up until the signed award has been received and passed to the Accounting Office for fund number set-up. In most cases awards are emailed directly to OSP by the sponsor, however in some cases they may be sent directly to the Principal Investigator (PI). If you receive an award directly, please forward to the OSP office promptly through the email@example.com email.
UVI can receive many types of agreements which may have different characteristics. The main award types are grants, cooperative agreements, contracts, and other transaction agreements. OSP will compare the award to the original proposal, and reviews the terms and conditions of the award notice. OSP will discuss with the Principal Investigators (PIs) to notify them of any terms they need to be aware of to successfully manage the project including but not limited to:
- period of performance
- funds awarded
- report schedule and procedures
- publication & acknowledgement procedures
- prior approval requirements and procedures
- cost share commitments
- compliance requirements (i.e. IRB, IACUC, RCR, etc)
Once OSP has reviewed and confirmed the terms are acceptable they will accept or execute the agreement if a signature is required. In many cases a signature is required by both parties. In this case the award is not considered active until both parties have signed the agreement.
After an award has been accepted or signed, OSP will send the information with any official proposal and award documents to the Accounting Office who will assign a Fund Number in the Banner system. OSP will copy the PI and the department administrator, if applicable, on the correspondence to the Accounting Office. The Accounting Office will not set-up a fund number for sponsored program projects unless they receive the official notification from OSP.
A subaward (or subcontract or subagreement) is when funds from a sponsor are passed-through to a lower-tier entity. OSP would issue a subaward when UVI receives an award and another entity will be completing a specific component or share responsibilities for the project’s design, conduct, and/or reporting. Typically, OSP requires the below documents to be submitted at the proposal stage. OSP will use these and the UVI award documents to draft the subaward agreement to the subawardee. If the subward was not included in the proposal or not all of the below documents were received, they will be required before a subaward agreement can be issued. OSP is responsible for completing a risk assessment as required by federal regulations. OSP will discuss the assessment with the PI if additional monitoring may be needed.
- Subaward Commitment Form/Financial Questionnaire as needed)
- Scope of Work
- Budget/Budget Justification
Once the subaward agreement has been signed, OSP will send to the Accounting Office copying the PI and the department administrator, if applicable. OSP will conduct the annual risk assessments as required by federal regulations and notify the PI if any changes in monitoring may be needed. Any changes to the subaward agreement must be issued through an official modification/amendment and signed by the authorized official in OSP.
OSP staff assists PIs with the non-financial management of their awards, including submission of sponsor prior approval request, submission of technical performance reports requiring an authorized official signature, answering award related questions, and assisting with maintaining compliance with the award terms and conditions.
For questions on project start-up, day-to-day award management, and non-financial award close-out, please contact OSP at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For questions on the day-to-day financial management of your awards (e.g., incurring expenses, balances, cost-transfers, financial reports, invoices) please contact your assigned Grant Accountant or Mr. Oliver Elcock at email@example.com in the Accounting Office if you are unsure who your assigned accountant is.
After an award is made, changes resulting from circumstances not anticipated in the planning stages of the project are sometimes necessary. These changes can be programmatic or financial in nature. Some changes require the sponsor’s prior written approval. Prior approval requirements vary by agency. It is recommended to contact the OSP for specific questions about prior approvals and for submission of the requests. See below for examples.
- Changes in the scope of work (SOW) or project objectives
- Change in the Principal Investigator or a significant reduction of effort
- No cost extension of the budget or project period
- Changes or additions to collaborating institutions/subawardees
- Carry forward funds from one budget year into the next
- Technical/Performance Report: This report would describe the progress of the project, completed activities and outcomes, identify significant changes, and plans for the remaining time on the project/budget years. OSP is the office responsible for submission of technical/progress reports that require an authorized official’s signature.
- Financial Report: This report would include the financial information on the project for the reporting period. For federal projects this is also called the SF425. For financial reports or financial information required to be included in your technical report please work with your assigned Grant Accountant in the Accounting Office. The Accounting Office is the only unit authorized to sign SF425 forms.
- Invention Report: This report would describe any technical discoveries, improvements, innovations or inventions that were developed under the awarded project. OSP can assist with completing and signing the required report forms.
- Property Report – This report would describe any federally owned or federally acquired property including any excess supplies left on hand at the end of the awarded project. OSP, in collaboration with the Accounting Office, can assist PIs with completing and signing the required report forms.
The PI is responsible for ensuring that all costs charged to a sponsored project meet the definitions of allowable, allocable, and reasonable. This determination is based on federal regulations and on the sponsor agency specific guidelines/terms. For questions on allowable and unallowable costs PIs can contact OSP or the Accounting Office.
Allowable Cost Principles:
- Allowable: The costs is allowable as defined by the Uniform Guidance (UG)and/ or by the terms of the particular award.
- Allocable: The cost must have a demonstrable and specific benefit to the sponsored project. For additional information, see 2 CFR 200.405.
- Reasonable: The nature and the amount of the cost does not exceed what would be incurred by a prudent person under similar circumstances. For additional information, see 2 CFR 200.404.
- The treatment of the cost must also be consistent across the university.
An unallowable cost is a cost that cannot be paid by your award. Such costs may be prohibited by the Uniform Guidance, sponsor specific terms and conditions, or university policy. Costs that are typically unallowable may only be charged to your fund account when specifically approved by the sponsor in the award budget or correspondence from the grants officer. Uniform Guidance provides details of the types of costs that cannot be charged to federal awards, either as direct or indirect costs.