Frequently Asked Questions
What is ARRA?
In February 2009, President Obama signed into law the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA). The act has three main goals; to create and save jobs, to stimulate immediate economic activity and spur long-term growth; and to foster unprecedented levels of accountability and transparency related to the expenditure of government funds.
In addition to tax cuts, tax incentives, expanded unemployment benefits, federal agencies are utilizing Recovery funds to award grants, contracts, and loans.
What is different about reporting with ARRA Funds?
Ten days following the close of each calendar quarter, awardees are required to file a report of expenditures, jobs created or retained, and program progress with the Federal Government. The report is submitted online to a web page established for this purpose; Federalreporting.gov. Ultimately the reports will become publicly accessible via the internet site; www.recovery.gov.
Who does the reporting?
Sponsored Funds Financial Management staff will be responsible for both the quarterly reporting to the Federal Government as well as any financial reports required by the sponsor. Technical reports should be completed by Project Staff and submitted as usual.
Is the reporting to the Federal Government in lieu of standard sponsor reporting?
No. The quarterly reports grantees are required to submit are separate and in addition to any financial or technical reports required due to the sponsor in accordance to the terms and conditions of the sponsored award.
What about technical reports?
The technical reports are not submitted to the Federal government, but should still be completed and submitted to the sponsor in accordance with the award requirements.
What information will the PI or Project Staff need to submit for the quarterly reports, and how will it be submitted?
Sponsored Funds Financial Management staff will reach out via email to the PI and/or Project staff on a quarterly basis to inquire about the over all progress of the project. The PI or Project staff simply needs to reply to the email. All other data required to be submitted will be accommodated by data gathered within the Oracle business system.
Does the PI or project staff need to register for Federalreporting.gov?
No. Sponsored Funds Financial Management staff have registered in order to complete this task.
What are the regulations related to recruitment of staff?
There are requirements regarding the posting of positions for any state funded ARRA awards. There are also time frames for hiring staff with supplemental funds. Please refer to the specific award notice as additional regulations may exist.
Can I utilize ARRA funds for administrative support and expenses?
No. ARRA regulations preclude any direct charges to awards for expenditures which would be accommodated for in the Facilities and Administrative (F&A) costs.
Do I have flexibility in terms of how I spend my award?
Budget flexibility will depend on the terms and conditions of the specific award. However, guidance indicates that caution should be used in deviating from proposed budgets as Stimulus Funds are also being provided to ensure the transparency and accountability goals of the legislation.
Will no cost extension or carry forwards be approved?
Ultimately the decision will depend upon the sponsor. However, guidance indicates that such requests are unlikely given the intent of the Stimulus funds.
What can I do?
Ensure that requests for expenditures are placed against Stimulus funds in an accurate and timely fashion. This includes both Personnel and Non-Personnel Services. Additionally, accounts should be monitored on a monthly basis to ensure accuracy.
What are the potential consequences of non-compliance?
As always, non-compliance with regulations places the campus at risk for an audit finding or disallowance of expenditure. The sponsor may elect to immediately terminate funding of the specific award in question. Non-compliance may also negatively impact future funding possibilities for the PI or the University as a whole. Additionally, given the transparency and accountability goals of ARRA, non compliance will be visible to the public at large, and could therefore yield additional scrutiny, commentary, and impact.
Should you have any questions concerning the requirements of your award, we encourage you to work with your Research Administrator in the Office for Sponsored Programs and include any post-award office as appropriate.
Should you have any questions, concerns, or would like additional information related to ARRA reporting, please do not hesitate to contact us.
You may also find additional information concerning ARRA regulations and reporting requirements on the following web pages: