Making it official
Congratulations! Your proposal has been deemed eligible for award. There may be additional considerations to address before the Authorized Official may accept the award.
DHHS: National Institutes of Health "Just in Time"
The National Institutes of Health have a special pre-award phase called "Just in Time" to gather final documents prior to releasing an award notice and funding authorization. Specific items will be requested, namely:
- CITI Certification if dealing with research subjects
- Responsible Conduct in Research (RCR Verification)
- IACUC/IBC/PHSC/IRSC proof of protocol submission
To submit a protocol, login to the Protocol and Compliance Management database. We have a training presentation (ppt) on the protocol submission and review process if you need help.
Negotiating the Scope and Terms of Award
While most federal assistance comes with standard award terms and conditions, federal flow-through agreements where the College is a sub-recipient, federal contracts (acquisition), Interagency Personnel Agreements and non-federal agreements may contain terms that need to be adjusted in order to accept the award. Even in the case of federal assistance agreements there may be items that require additional attention, especially in the case of significant budget reduction. Some agencies require a budget impact statement to address the reduction in funds.
Note: If a budget has been reduced, the PI must work with the Sponsored Programs Administrator to submit a revised budget. If sub-recipients are involved, their budgets and scopes of work will need to be revisited as well. In the case of significant reduction (more than 10%), the PI should also consider how much of the proposed scope remains feasible given the limited financial support.
Signing the Agreement
Many federal assistance awards are issued unilaterally, meaning the agency releases the funds under the assumption that by spending the funds, the recipient accepts the terms and conditions provided. Federal contracts may also be issued unilaterally. This underscores the importance of putting together a sound proposal- there may be no opportunity to negotiate after the fact.
Who signs an agreement? Both the Director of Sponsored Programs and the Associate Director of Sponsored Programs are authorized to bind the College to sponsored programs. In some cases, such as Jeffress Memorial Trust awards, the PI must also sign the agreement to convey acceptance of the scientific scope. Either the Director or Associate Director of Sponsored Programs must sign any lower-tier agreements, i.e. subcontracts or sub-awards.
Need to record expenditures during the negotiation period? For most federal awards, universities may incur pre-award costs up to 90 days before the start date of the award. Be forewarned - costs are incurred at the PI Department's own risk. If you need an advance account established, please work with your Sponsored Programs Administrator to set up the account for you. Establishing an advance account can pre-empt the headache of salary redistributions and Journal Vouchers when hiring help or acquiring goods needed to begin work on a project.
Issuing a Sub-award
Once the College has received and executed its award, the Sponsored Programs Administrator will work with the PI to issue any lower-tier awards. All subagreements (any lower-tier contract, grant, or cooperative agreement) must be signed by an Authorized Official of the College. PIs do not have signature authority on behalf of the institution. If the intended sub-recipient has never worked with the College before, a W-9 and Vendor Registration Form will be needed to set up the recipient institution in Banner.
Did you receive a check from the agency? Use this Check Deposit Form (doc) to have the funds credited to your grant account.