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Notice of a Grant Award

A notice of grant award (also referred to as notice, NOGA, NGA, sponsor notice, or award letter) is a notification from a sponsor indicating that a proposal has been funded. Notice of grant awards are typically received by Sponsored Programs, although on occasion a Principal Investigator (PI) may be notified directly. Notices should be forwarded to Sponsored Programs for review and processing.

Account Set-up

Upon receiving a sponsor award notice or update to an award, a Grants and Compliance Specialist in Sponsored Programs initiates the account set-up/modification process. Once the account(s) and award information has been completed a member of Sponsored Programs will contact the PI to review terms and conditions of the award. 

Award Management

Managing the regulatory and fiduciary responsibilities of sponsored research funds is a highly regulated and complex undertaking. There are multiple parties involved and many phases within the life cycle of an award.

Proper stewardship of sponsored research funds is a responsibility that is shared among many individuals and entities within the University. Cooperation results in the effective management of public funds to maximize research outcomes and higher standards of research integrity. Managing these funds properly will also decrease serious cases of fraud, institutional mismanagement, and poor management of federal funds.

Responsibilities of Sponsored Programs include:

  • Approval of proposed budgets being submitted to external sponsors on behalf of CMU; 
  • Assisting investigators with understanding the compliance requirements and expectations defined in CMU policy; 
  • Notification and transmittal of awarded project budgets and approved re-budgeting requests to the Business Office; 
  • Monitoring projects for compliance with the CMU policy and sponsor terms and conditions; 
  • Review of direct costs identified in proposals for compliance with CMU policy
  • Recording re-budgeting requests in the financial system; 
  • Approve and process cost transfers, when required;
  • Contacting Project Directors or Principal Investigators (PI's) if concerns are identified; 
  • Ensuring compliance with sponsor cost-related prior approval requirements; 
  • Ensure mandatory cost share commitments reflect allowable, reasonable, and necessary contributions, receive appropriate valuation;
  • Approval of re-budgeting requests; 
  • Submission of sponsor prior approval requests; 
  • Oversight of the effort reporting processes; 
  • Timely submission of invoices and financial reports; 
  • Reporting of cost share and program income; 
  • Timely award closeout; and
  • Record retention compliance for records maintained by Sponsored Programs.

 Responsibilities of the PI include: 

  • Maintain fiscal oversight of their awards; 
  • Review expenditures on a monthly basis and correct overruns or errors, if necessary; 
  • Ensure that all disbursements are allowable and are authorized based on terms and conditions of the award; 
  • Ensure mandatory cost share commitments are accumulated and supported by documentation; 
  • Charge expenses to the appropriate account; 
  • Expend funds according to their approved budgets, within the project period, and in accordance with CMU policy; 
  • Inspect items received and be sure they are in acceptable condition; if not, contact procurement. 
  • Forward invoices sent directly by the vendor to Sponsored Programs or Accounts Payable for processing; 
  • Approve and train any individuals who have delegated expenditure authority on the requirements of the policy; 
  • Proper authorization and documentation of expenditures; 
  • Submission of justified prior approval requests, re-budgeting requests and cost transfers; 
  • Monitor all aspects of their sub-awards, including sub-awardees performance and approval on invoices;
  • Notify Sponsored Programs immediately upon discovery of issues involving a sub-awardee's performance; 
  • At the time of proposal submission disclose the expectation of program income, or if program income was not anticipated at submission, but subsequently earned, it should be disclosed at the end of the generating activity; and 
  • Contact Sponsored Programs if there are any changes that may require prior approval for the sponsor. 

Award Closeout

Upon project termination, Sponsored Programs will review the account and work with the Principal Investigator (PI) to determine the final figure to be reported to the sponsor on the financial report or final invoice.

Sponsored Programs will be responsible for:

  • Submitting the final financial report/invoice to the sponsor.

The PI will be responsible for (if necessary):

  • Timely submission of final progress report. 

In most cases for federal awards, final financial reports must be submitted within 90 days from the award end date, and within 60 days for final invoices. Non-federal deadlines may vary by sponsor. To meet sponsor deadlines there needs to be clear and timely communication between PI and Sponsored Programs Grants and Compliance Specialists. Sponsored Programs will submit the final financial report/invoice to the sponsor upon agreement with the PI on the final figure to be reported.