Research Administration Guidelines
RAG50 Documentation of Cost Sharing
Policy Steward:Vice President for Research and Corporate Controller>
Policy RA50 provides policy regarding cost sharing. This guideline provides detail on the accounting which must be followed to appropriately document cost sharing, both committed and uncommitted.
Grants and contracts that have any component of committed cost sharing – mandatory or voluntary – must so indicate on the AURA form (Cost Sharing Y or N field). All changes to committed cost sharing must be updated in IBIS through the UACT screen.
To ensure compliance with the documentation requirements for committed cost sharing, all committed cost sharing from general funds for a specific agreement should be accounted for through a general fund cost sharing account cost center, using the same budget function (function code) as the agreement (Instruction, Research, Continuing Education). Committed cost sharing from miscellaneous funds, such as gifts and endowments or MGR, must be accounted for through a miscellaneous fund cost sharing account, using cost centers to identify the match for each grant or contract. The name of the cost center must include the current fund number of the agreement for central reporting purposes.
Other cost sharing should be accounted for as follows:
- Fringe benefits: If the fringe rates are identical for the cost sharing account and the sponsored award, no additional documentation is required. If the rates differ, then the difference should be calculated manually and included in any reporting of itemized matching costs.
- Tuition: Tuition for graduate assistants paid from the grant-in-aid budget can be reallocated to the cost sharing cost center for the sponsored award – although temporary budget dollars from the general funds GIA account cannot be reallocated without advance approval from the Assistant Controller. Cost sharing can also be tracked within the GIA account through use of a cost center.
- F&A costs for cost sharing accounted for on general funds is to be calculated manually and separately in accordance with approved rates and included in any reporting of itemized matching costs.
- Third Party Contributions to Cost Sharing (e.g. an industrial grant)
- Managed by the University - If a portion of the grant is used as cost sharing, use a cost center to track the portion of that account used for cost sharing (The cost center name should include the fund number of the grant for which the match is being made).
- Incurred by Third Party – The third party should provide a written report documenting their contributions to the committed cost sharing for a particular grant or agreement. Sample Third Party Cost Share Commitment Letters and Confirmations can be found here. See RA50, Cost Sharing, for specific valuation guidance.
Uncommitted cost sharing is not and must not be identified specifically in the proposal budget or award or any modification, and must not be documented or accounted for as part of the award.
Additionally, uncommitted cost sharing, per clarification in Memorandum M-01-06, dated January 5, 2001, "must be treated differently from committed effort and should not be included in the organized research base for computing the F&A rate or reflected in any allocation of F&A costs." Given this requirement, uncommitted cost share has specific requirements for documentation:
- Must not be reported to the sponsor. Therefore, it is prohibited from being included with committed cost share in the same cost sharing accounts or cost centers.
- Must be tracked for internal reporting purposes to assure these costs are appropriately categorized for calculation of the F&A rate.
- Uncommitted cost sharing should be posted to an account which is NOT categorized as organized research. However, if it is accounted for in the organized research base (through posting to an account coded as organized research) for other purposes, uncommitted cost sharing must be segregated and reported centrally to assure these costs are reclassified for purposes of the F&A rate calculation performed by Cost Analysis.
- Must be specifically identified and charged to assure these costs are not inappropriately charged to another federal award. For example, if a PI spends 50% of their effort on an award, but only 40% of their effort may be charged to the award, then the additional 10% must be treated as uncommitted cost sharing. The 10% additional effort must be accounted for in a separate account to appropriately account for 100% of the PIs effort.
Please refer to Cost Sharing FAQs for more detail regarding cost sharing.
For questions, additional detail, or to request changes to this policy, please contact the Office of the Vice President for Research or the Office of the Corporate Controller.
Other Policies should also be referenced, especially the following:
RA10 - Costing Principles for Sponsored Awards
RA50 - Cost Sharing (Formerly RAG10)
Effective Date: February 26, 2016
Date Approved: February 22, 2016
Date Published: February 26, 2016
Most recent changes:
- April 16, 2018 - Links added to sample Third Party Cost Share Commitment Letters and Confirmations
Revision History (and effective dates):
- February 26, 2016 - This new guideline has been created as part of the policy reorganization brought about by implementation of the Uniform Guidance (2 CFR 200).