February 29, 2008

Campus Training Resources: Workshop DVD Library

The Research Administration and Compliance Office has DVDs of the following NCURA workshops and other training material available for campus departments to borrow. To borrow a DVD, contact Alaisha Hellman (3-2836, amhellman@berkeley.edu). RAC is ordering the 2008 NCURA TV DVDs; they will be listed here when available.

NCURA TV Satellite Broadcast Recordings
  • Conflict of Interest: How to Spot and Manage It (June 2007)
  • Effort Reporting (March 2007)
  • Sponsored Program Essentials (January 2007)
  • Post-award Issues for the Pre-award and Departmental Administrator (January 2006)
  • Best Practices in Research Compliance: Update on Policies and Regulations and Implementation at Institutions (September 2005)
  • Principles of Federal Research and Development Contracting (June 2005)
Other DVDs
  • What Are We Signing Anyway (NCURA Course, December 2005)
  • Export Control Session (UC IP Managers/C&G Officers Meeting, November 2005)

February 28, 2008

Limited Submissions Announcements Moving to CALmessages

The Vice Chancellor for Research Office will be using the improved features of the recently upgraded CALmessages system to provide the campus with a better method for announcing limited submission funding programs. Using CALmessages, the VCRO will now send limited submission announcements to faculty within targeted departments and/or units based on the focus of the agency funding program or, when the program is more general, to faculty campus-wide. For example, a program funding public health research would be directed only to faculty within the School of Public Health.

Research administrators and other staff who also wish to be notified of upcoming limited submission deadlines must sign up for the Limited Submission CALmessages list at https://calmessages.berkeley.edu/subscribe (CalNet authorization required). Faculty members do not need to sign up for this list; they will receive messages automatically. Staff who sign up for the list will receive all messages, not just those specific to their department.

Limited submission programs with campus deadlines will continue to be listed at http://www.spo.berkeley.edu/Fund/limited.html. Messages will also be archived in CALmessages. For more information on CALmessages, see https://calmessages.berkeley.edu/.

FY 2008 DoD Indirect Cost Policy

The fiscal year 2008 Department of Defense (DoD) appropriation includes a one-year limit, or cap, of 35 percent on indirect costs (i.e., facilities and administrative or F&A) of DoD-sponsored basic research. This bill capped the amount of indirect costs the prime contractor can receive under certain DoD contracts, grants, and cooperative agreements to 35 percent of Total Cost (TC). The limitation applies to an award at the prime level only and does not flow down to subcontractors.

UC Berkeley investigators and staff preparing DoD proposal budgets should continue to use the negotiated campus Facilities and Administrative (Indirect Cost) Rates of 53.5 percent for on-campus sponsored research and 26 percent for off-campus sponsored research.

Upon award, the DoD awarding agency will be responsible for any adjustments to the budget proposal. In those situations where the budget proposal included F&A costs that exceeded the cap, the agency may adjust the award. However, a university that has a negotiated F&A rate of 53.8 percent or less should not incur a loss of indirect cost recovery.

The Council on Governmental Relations provides an explanation of the math involved in determining if an institution is affected by the 35-percent limit:
Institutions that have a negotiated F&A rate of 53.8 percent, or less, will be financially unaffected (i.e., F&A can not exceed 35 cents for every $1 expended; therefore a ratio of 35 cents of F&A to 65 cents of direct costs is the conversion ratio to the “standard” F&A rate based on modified total direct costs. In situations where all direct costs on an award are F&A eligible, 53.8 percent is effectively the F&A rate cap).

Example one:
  • On a $100,000 award, $35,000 in indirect costs is the maximum allowed ($100,000 x 35%)
  • If $35,000 is the indirect cost, $65,000 is the direct cost ($100,000 - $35,000 = $65,000)
  • So, $35,000/ $65,000 = 53.846%
  • Thus, 35% Total Cost = 53.846% of Direct Costs
Example two:
  • $100,000 MTDC x 53% IDC = $53,000
  • $153,000 Total Costs
  • $153,000 x 35% = $53,550
  • $53,000 < $53,550 so full indirect cost rate can be applied
University of California Office of the President Research Administration Office guidance is available at http://www.ucop.edu/raohome/cgmemos/08-03.pdf.

DoD guidance on the limit is available at http://www.dod.mil/ddre/doc/LABS_Memo_indirect_cost_limitation.pdf.