Employee Handbook - Single Item

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Overhead Return Policy (Distribution of Indirect Cost Return)

Facilities and Administrative costs (F&A) are collected from funding agencies on allowable expenses on grants/contracts through the Office of Sponsored Programs Post-Award Administration. The billing schedule for each grant/contract is been pre-determined by the award documentation. Based on the billing schedule, there can be several months' delay between when the expenses were incurred and when the billing occurs. This will then have a direct correlation when the indirect reimbursement is received. The allocation is made based on F&A received and posted to the cost object during the previous fiscal year (July 1 through June 30.)

After the close of the state's fiscal year, the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research (VCR) provides detailed data regarding F&A collected on each grant/contract. F&A may be moved from one college to another based on either (1) the "% F&A" column of the NUGrant proposal routing form or (2) any agreement on file in the VCR's office (agreements overwrite routing forms).

More information can be found at: http://research.unl.edu/sp1/policies.shtml

Of the total F&A funds collected, UNL retains $700,000 for the university's general operating budget. Of the remaining, 20.5% is held for Library Support, Research & Infrastructure Fund. Of the remaining, the VCR's office retains one-third to reimburse the university's costs associated with research, one-third is held by the chancellor and the vice chancellor for research and economic development for each of their strategic initiatives; and one-third to each College/Division.

Of the one-third that is returned to IANR, one-third is held at the applicable division level and the remaining two-thirds is returned to each department. Each College/Division has their own philosophy for how overhead is returned. SNR returns 60% to faculty and retains 40% for the unit. Under special circumstances different splits can be established.

Example: Professor X is the only PI on a $100,000 grant earning full ARD F&A (45.5%). If the grant funding was total expended during the fiscal year and all F&A was collected during the fiscal year, the grant would have generated $45,500 in F&A. A portion of that will be retained for the $700,000. However, for sake of this calculation, it will be assumed that we have $45,500 to work with. Of that amount, 20.5% ($9,225) is retained for infrastructure. Of the remaining $35,755, 1/3 ($11,925) will be held by the VCR; 1/3 ($11,925) will be held for strategic initiatives; 1/3 ($11,925) will be returned to the college/IANR. IANR then withholds 1/3 ($3.975) and returns 2/3 to the department/unit ($7,950). Of that, 60% ($4,770) is returned to the PI(s) and 40% ($3,180) is held by SNR.

Related websites:
     Rates charged on grants: http://research.unl.edu/sp1/farates.shtml
     Overhead return distribution: http://research.unl.edu/sp1/policies.shtml