This section is included to call your attention to certain policies and procedures that need to be considered prior to or during proposal preparation.
Human Subjects - All proposed research involving human subjects conducted under the auspices of a department, school, or research unit within the university requires completion of the Request for Review of Research Involving Human Subjects and the Research Protocol forms and submission to the OSRP well in advance of the proposal deadline. Research involving human subjects is required by federal regulation [45 CFR 46.102] to be reviewed and approved or declared exempt by the NCCU Institutional Review Board for the Protection of Human Research Subjects (IRB) prior to submitting a proposal for extramural funding to support such research. (See Appendix B)
The IRB meets monthly. All protocol and other documentation needed for the review must be submitted to the IRB by the first working day of the month in which the review results are needed. (See IRB Manual for detailed procedures.)
In order to gain approval for submission of a research proposal to an off-campus agency:
Notification of The Award - After favorable action on the application, a "Grant Award" or similar document is ordinarily issued by the sponsor. Upon receipt of such documents, the OSRP will complete a Notification of Award form, which summarizes the terms and conditions of the award, codes the budgets and authorizes the establishment of an account in the Office of Contracts & Grants. A copy of the award notification is forwarded to the Principal Investigator and Grants Officer(Comptroller).
When notification of the award is completed and the budget is cast, the Principal Investigator is responsible for the transmittal of all payroll forms on employees who will be paid on the grantor contract. The University Personnel Policy should be followed when hiring new employees. The following post-award procedures should be followed when a proposal is funded:
The completed Award Notification and Object Code Budget are sent to Grants and Contracts to assign the FRS account number and set-up the grant account.
Note: Package of personnel forms and procedures for implementing project related staffing can be obtained from the NCCU Human Resources Department and the Provost Office.
If the Proposal Is Not Funded - If the proposal is not recommended for support, you are entitled to know why funding was denied. Some agencies include reviewers' comments with the declination notice and others will provide them when requested by the Principal Investigator. Most agencies permit resubmissions and some even encourage them with proposals having a basically sound idea but a design that may require some revision.
The Office of Contracts and Grants - The Office of Contracts and Grants (C&G) is responsible to the university and to the funding agencies for the financial administration of all contracts and grants awarded to the university. This responsibility includes the following duties:
Establishing Account - When the Office of Sponsored Research (OSRP) receives and accepts a formal notice of award from the granting agency, a copy of the award, extramural funding notification and object code budget are sent to C&G. The Grants Office proceeds to process this information according to the following steps:
Expenditure of Grant Funds - The Contracts and Grants Office will review all requests for payroll authorization, purchase requisitions and travel requests for compliance with specific grant terms and conditions and for compliance with university, state and federal regulations.
Purchase Requisition - All purchase requisitions for grant accounts, except Title III accounts, must be submitted to the Grants Office for processing before going to the Purchasing Office. Title III requisitions are first submitted to the Title III Office for endorsement.
Requisitions will be reviewed for signature of principal investigator, grant termination date, account number, object code, availability of funds and allowability of costs under the grant.
Travel Requests - All travel requests must be submitted to the travel office for approval. The request is forwarded to the Grants Office for review of signature, account number, availability of funds and to determine if travel is allowed under the grant.
Payroll Authorizations - Personnel commitments are handled in accordance with established university salary and wage policies. Requests for employment are submitted to the appropriate offices for approval, (i.e., the Provost Office, the Title III Office) before submission to the Grants Office. The Grants Office reviews the request for appropriate signatures, account number and object code, type of employment, distribution of time, the availability of funds and allowability of costs under the grant.
Time and Effort Reports - Office of Management and Budget Circular A-21 requires effort certification for payroll distribution purposes for all payroll charges to federal contracts and grants. These Time and Effort reports account for 100% of each individual's effort even if he/she is part-time.
OMB Circular A-21 requires that the payroll distribution system (time and effort reporting) will be (1) incorporated into the official records of the University, (2) reasonably reflect the activity for which the employee is compensated by the University, and (3) encompass both sponsored and all other activities on an integrated basis. The Office of Contracts and Grants is responsible for collecting, reviewing, and maintaining the official file of time and effort reports. The department head or dean must certify the effort of the principal investigator. Certification of the effort requires that the person signing the time and effort report have first-hand knowledge of all the employee's activities during the reporting period. The completed forms (see Forms, Appendix B) should be forwarded to the Grants Office by the 5th working day of each month in which salary or wages are charged to the grant account.
Cost Sharing, In-Kind and Matching - The Principal Investigator must report to the Grants Office, with accompanying documentation all cost sharing or in-kind expenditures obligated to the grant. These records must show how the value placed on the contribution was calculated. The contribution must be verifiable and documented in the university accounting records. A copy of a receipt or letter in verification of matching funds should be submitted to the Grants Office.
Budget Revisions and Transfers - Requests for budget transfers and revisions must be submitted to the OSRP for approval. Upon approval the request is forwarded to the Grants Office where the revision is entered into the university accounting system.
Closing Grant Account - Prior to the termination of a grant the principal investigator should review the grant for available funds, deficit balances, accuracy of the account and outstanding encumbrances. All requisitions must be submitted to the Grants Office before or by the termination date. If an extension of the grant beyond the ending date is needed, a written request should be submitted to the funding agency through the OSRP prior to the termination date.
Internal Prior Approval System Procedures - All requests for modifications to grants, contracts, or agreements are processed through the Office of Sponsored Research (OSRP).
The extent of budget reallocations permissible varies widely from sponsor to sponsor and program to program. Certain budgeted transfers may be accomplished using the established University prior approval system, whereas other budget transfers will involve agency approval.
Note: In all cases, authorization to deviate from the award budget must be approved prior to the expenditure, not after the fact. Consult OSRP on specific issues.
Changes in Human Subjects Protocol - Changes in Human Subject Protocol must be approved by the Institutional Review Board for the Protection of Human Subjects from Research Risks (IRB).
Human Resources - Contact the Human Resources Department for established University procedures which must be used in hiring all persons to be supported with grant or contract funds.
Remember: Principal Investigators/Project Directors should have all payroll authorizations approved before an employee starts to work. Questions regarding position classifications and salary and wage policies should be discussed with the Human Resources Department.
Cost Sharing, In-Kind and Matching - All cost sharing that is required or reported to an agency must be documented. Salaries and wages must be certified via the time and effort reporting system. Supplies, materials and equipment must be supported by invoices or other documents verifying the expenditure.
The project director/principal investigator must report all cost sharing expenditures to the Contracts and Grants Office at the end of the project with supporting documentation. The Contracts and Grants Office will report expenditures to the agencies.
Reporting - Practically all sponsors require a final, comprehensive report on completion of a project. The one exception is when a project is continued, in which case an interim report may also be required. There is ordinarily a firm due date for final reports, and sponsors properly expect to receive the report on or before that date.
Note: If, for reasons beyond the Project Director's control, the report will be delayed, a letter should be transmitted from the OSRP to the sponsor explaining the reasons for delay and requesting a time extension.
In many cases, as with the National Institutes of Health (NIH), no costs can be charged to the project after the expiration date even though the report may not have been delivered. Consequently, if the report is not completed on or before the expiration date, there may be difficulty in paying such costs as typing, art work, duplication, etc.
Note: The University cannot receive its final payment under a contract or grant until the sponsor's final reporting requirements are met. Therefore, undue delay in submission of the final report may work a financial hardship on the University. There is also a very real probability that both the Principal Investigator's and the University's image with the sponsor may be damaged.
Program Income - For grants with program income please consult the university's Program Income Policy.
Note: See the Roles and Responsibilities Matrix for additional grants management guidance.
North Carolina Central University
1801 Fayetteville St.
Durham, NC 27707