Cost Share and Institutional Support
The implementation of 2 CFR 200, the Uniform Requirements, has necessitated some clarification of the two different types of financial support for sponsored projects provided by Georgia Tech. They are:
Cost Share: The Uniform Requirements dictate that unless cost share is mandatory, it may not be used as criteria by a federal agency for proposal review. In an effort to provide fair and equitable support to all units, the Office of the Executive Vice President for research will therefore only consider providing cost share when it is mandated by the sponsor as a required element of a proposal. In rare instances, federal agencies may publish proposals that “encourage” cost sharing although it is not mandatory. Should this scenario occur, colleges and schools may choose to fund cost share commitments as long as the terms are compliant with OMB requirements and approved by OSP. Cost share commitments are requested via the Cost Share Approval Form and awards that include cost share are tracked in the Grants and Contracts Accounting system and are reported to the sponsor.
Institutional Commitment: An institutional commitment consists of support that is provided by Georgia Tech to the PI. It may be used towards sponsored research activities; however, it is not documented in the proposal and is not reported to the sponsor. Institutional Commitments are requested via the EVPR Internal Institutional Support Form.
Young Investigator Support
Junior faculty who receive one or more young investigator awards such as NSF CAREER or DARPA YFA may request up to $20,000 from Georgia Tech in support of their research. This support falls into the category of an Institutional Commitment and is therefore not documented for the sponsor as cost share. The funds are exclusively for equipment and must be spent within two years of the award’s start date. $20,000 is the maximum for an individual investigator, regardless of the number of awards received.
Cost Sharing Approvals and Routing
Whenever cost sharing is proposed as part of a sponsored project, the source of funds must be identified and approval must be obtained from the person with authority to commit those funds. If the source is identified as "To Be Determined," the funds from the unit originating the proposal are obligated until an actual source is committed prior to the time of award. Funds to be provided by entities outside of Georgia Tech, typically referred to as third-party cost sharing, must be supported at the proposal stage by written documentation from the outside entity indicating the commitment to provide cost sharing. Cost sharing funds are actually made available to the project director/principal investigator (PD/PI) if/when the proposal results in a sponsored award. Cost sharing approvals are obtained by way of the Proposal Routing form and a Cost Sharing Approval form. The Office of Sponsored Programs furnishes a management report of all outstanding cost sharing commitments associated with pending sponsored proposals to the Office of the President on a monthly basis.
Project Accounts and Obligations
Upon receipt of a sponsored award, OSP obtains a project account number and a cost sharing account number from either Grants & Contracts Accounting or GTRI Accounting, as appropriate. This process opens chargeable accounts for the PD/PI and the responsible unit to use during the course of the project. The project and cost sharing account budgets, provided by OSP to the appropriate accounting office, will be valued at the funded amount of the sponsored award and at the associated amount of committed cost sharing, respectively. It is the responsibility of the PD/PI or the unit business officer to work with appropriate personnel in the Dean’s Office or President’s Office to make available committed cost sharing funds from that authority's sources. In the case of a President's Office obligation, the PD/PI must submit a written request for the necessary cost sharing funds, which are generally provided by way of GTRC matching grants.
It is important that the PD/PI and his/her unit business officer identify appropriate charges to be applied against cost sharing accounts throughout the life of a sponsored project but certainly before the end of the project period. All required cost sharing obligations must be met and properly documented in the Institute accounting system before the project accounts can be financially closed out.
Review Georgia Tech's policy on cost sharing.