Monitoring Project Budgets

It is not uncommon for a PI to determine that he/she must rebudget funds in order to complete his or her research.

  • For research grants incorporating standard federal Research Terms and Conditions, many federal agencies have delegated authority to the Institute. An outline of the requirements for rebudgeting and other prior approvals for these federal sponsors can be found in this Research Terms and Conditions Prior Approvals Matrix (PDF). For awards that fall under OMB’s Uniform Guidance, this Prior Approvals Matrix will be replaced by a revised matrix of standard federal Research Terms and Conditions.
  • Funds provided for NSF participant support costs may not be used for other categories of expense without the specific prior written approval of the cognizant NSF Program Officer. Awardee organizations must account for participant support costs separately, therefore, OSP recommends that a separate lower level WBS be established to manage these costs in accordance with NSF requirements.
  • Federal cooperative agreements and contracts may contain terms requiring prior approval for rebudgeting. Individual awards should be reviewed for unusual terms.
  • Industry, foundation and other non-federal sponsors have various policies for rebudgeting. Refer to the sponsor’s award for specific guidance. When the agreement is silent, PIs should use their best judgement in rebudgeting funds as necessary to meet the requirements of the project.

Depending on the terms of the award the PI may be required to submit a revised budget to the sponsor, explaining the need for rebudgeting project costs. The DLC should first check the sponsor’s award document to see if the sponsor has specific guidelines for when a revised budget is required.

If a budget is required, it should be submitted to the DLC’s OSP representative for review. The OSP representative will then work with the DLC on the revision and submission of the new budget to the sponsor. In some cases, a budget will not be required for submission to the sponsor; however, it is a good idea to build a projection based on the new budget so that the DLC can maintain an accurate profile for the project.