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The Top Ten Things You Should Know Today about Effort on Sponsored Projects Office of Extramural Support University of Wisconsin-Extension October 2007.

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Presentation on theme: "The Top Ten Things You Should Know Today about Effort on Sponsored Projects Office of Extramural Support University of Wisconsin-Extension October 2007."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Top Ten Things You Should Know Today about Effort on Sponsored Projects Office of Extramural Support University of Wisconsin-Extension October 2007

2 A Warning The most important obstacles in effort reporting compliance are misunderstanding and denial, and sometimes one obstacle feeds on the other. Robert J. Kenney, Jr. Director, Grants and Contracts Practice Hogan and Hartson LLP, Washington, DC “Time and Effort Reporting: Overview and Risk Assessment” Report on Research Compliance, January 2006

3 Why are we talking about this? The federal government has made effort reporting a top target for audits. The federal government has made effort reporting a top target for audits. NSF’s Office of the Inspector General (OIG) is making the rounds of research universities. NSF’s Office of the Inspector General (OIG) is making the rounds of research universities. The Department of Justice is involved, filing charges under the False Claims Act. The Department of Justice is involved, filing charges under the False Claims Act. Many universities have had to pay millions of dollars in fines. Many universities have had to pay millions of dollars in fines.

4 1. Effort is your work on a project, whether the sponsor pays your salary or not. 2. When you write yourself into a grant proposal, you are committing your effort to the sponsor. Top 10 Concepts

5 3. If you reduce your effort, paid or unpaid, on a federal grant by 25%, you must have agency approval. If you reduce your paid effort, you may choose to document cost-sharing so that the total effort does not decrease. Top 10 Concepts

6 4. Many activities cannot be charged to a federally sponsored project. For example, the time you spend on these activities cannot be charged: Writing a proposal Writing a proposal Serving on an IRB, IACUC or other research committee Serving on an IRB, IACUC or other research committee Serving on a departmental or university service committee Serving on a departmental or university service committee Top 10 Concepts

7 5. If you work on a sponsored project, you must certify your effort. 6. Certifying effort is not the same as certifying payroll. Top 10 Concepts

8 7. Certification must reasonably reflect all the effort for all the activities that are covered by your UW compensation. 8. Effort is not based on a 40-hour work week. Top 10 Concepts

9 9. Effort must be certified by someone with a suitable means of verifying that the work was performed. 10. Auditors look for indications that certification was based on factors other than actual, justifiable effort. Top 10 Concepts

10 Where is this coming from? This is federal policy. This is federal policy. It’s not new; it may just sound unfamiliar. It’s not new; it may just sound unfamiliar. Recent aggressive federal audits have resulted in multi-million dollar fines at research universities. Recent aggressive federal audits have resulted in multi-million dollar fines at research universities.

11 There’s more to it than this, but… These ten concepts are the foundation for everything else. These ten concepts are the foundation for everything else. Effort must be certified using the Effort Certification and Reporting Technology (ECRT) System. Effort must be certified using the Effort Certification and Reporting Technology (ECRT) System.

12 Where to go for more info Watch the website services/extramural/effort. Documentation and training materials will be available Watch the website services/extramural/effort. Documentation and training materials will be availablewww.uwex.edu/business- services/extramural/effortwww.uwex.edu/business- services/extramural/effort Questions? Contact Questions? Contact


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