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Project Management

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General Project Management

In general, externally funded projects must be carried out according to the award instrument, consistent with the submitted proposal, and in accordance with all applicable rules and regulations. It is the responsibility of the project director to ensure that projects are managed appropriately.

 

Period of Performance

Each externally funded project will have a start date and an end date. This is known as the Period of Performance.

  • Funds may not be obligated prior to the start of the period of performance without prior written approval from the funder.
  • Funds may only be used for activities that occur within the Period of Performance without prior written approval from the funder.

 

Project Scope

Each externally funded project will contain a Scope of Work (SOW), either explicitly in the award document or by incorporation of the submitted proposal. Funds may only be spent on activities that fall under the approved Scope of Work.

 

Budget

Each externally funded project will contain an approved budget, either explicitly in the award document or by incorporation of the submitted proposal. Funds must be spent in accordance to the approved budget. Expenditures that do not fall within the approved budget cannot be charged against the project budget.

 

Spending Funds

Project Directors must follow applicable FSU policies and procedures for spending funds. Below are links to FSU’s policies and procedures related to common items of expense:

For additional guidance, please contact the Restricted Funds Accountant or the Office of Sponsored Programs.

 

Modifications

 Changes to a sponsored project may require FSU to provide the sponsor with a written request, or notification, and to receive written approval from the sponsor for the changes. Project Directors should contact the Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP@frostburg.edu) before implementing any changes. The OSP will determine whether your requested changes can be approved internally or if the sponsor’s approval is required.

 

Budget Modifications

 An approved budget may be modified to meet unanticipated needs or to make other types of post-award changes. If the requested modification is allocable and reasonable and within the sponsor’s specifications, it may be approved internally by the Restricted Funds Accountant. In other cases, budget modifications require prior written approval by the sponsor. Project Directors should contact the Office of Sponsored Programs regarding budget modifications to determine the appropriate approval path.

 

Other Project Changes

Prior written approval from the sponsor is required for the following project changes:
  • Change in project scope or objectives
  • Change of key personnel
  • Absence of Project Director for more than 3 months
  • Significant reduction in level of effort of key personnel
  • Transfer of project to another institution (to or from FSU)
  • Transfer of Equipment

“Prior Written Approval” means sponsor approval must be obtained in writing before undertaking any such actions.

Some external sponsors allow for a great deal of flexibility in the management of the sponsored project to the university. This is call “expanded authority.” Projects that include expanded authority permit the University (that is, the Office of Sponsored Programs or the Restricted Funds Accountant) to approve changes to the budget or to certain administrative processes without seeking prior approval from the sponsor. Project Directors should work with the Office of Sponsored Programs to determine whether or not a proposed change falls under the university’s expanded authority.

 

No-Cost Extensions

Project Directors may request a no-cost extension of the period of performance when more time is required to assure adequate completion of the original project scope. No-cost extensions do not provide additional funds for completing the project. Requirements to apply for a no-cost extension vary by sponsor. Project Directors should be prepared to provide a written technical justification for an extension. (Note that having funds remaining is not sufficient justification for an extension.) In all cases, no-cost extensions must be requested well in advance of the project expiration date. Project directors should contact the Office of Sponsored Programs as soon as it is determined that an extension is needed. The OSP will coordinate the submission of the no-cost extension to the project sponsor.

 

Policies & Guidelines