Award Finances

Initiate Spending

For new awards, the PI and RA will receive an email once the fund has been activated.

To initiate spending:

  • Transfer personnel costs by updating the earnings distribution chartstrings for payroll or the percentage of salaries
  • Update the BearBuy Profile Management so that the PI, RA, and designated others can purchase using the award fund
  • Process 7xx transfers and earning distribution chartstrings to correctly track cost sharing expenses to the Cost Share CF1 value as these costs are incurred

Monitor Spending

Direct expenses, overhead (F&A), and revenue are calculated daily and posted to the General Ledger. Payroll costs (salary, benefits, etc.) are updated monthly and typically post to the GL by mid-month. Regular/monthly review of these and all expenses charged to sponsored research awards is required to ensure:

  • The information transmitted to, contained in, and reported from the University's financial systems is accurate, complete, and recorded in a timely manner
  • The information can be relied upon for making financial and administrative decisions
  • Fraud, theft, compliance violations and other irregularities are quickly detected and reported to the appropriate authorities

The following reports can be used to perform the monthly review of sponsored research awards:

  • PI Portfolio provides a layman’s view of award financials, with spent-to-date totals for each fund current as or the prior business day (or mid-month for payroll)
  • Cal Answers reporting provides financial data through a variety of reports, as well as specific information for sponsored awards

If excessive spending results in an overdraft on a cost reimbursable award, CGA places sponsor billing on hold until the department clears the overdraft. Please refer to the Revenue and Accounts Receivable Collections page for more information. Occasionally an audit of award spending may be requested. Please refer to the Managing an Audit page for more information, as well as the Oversight, Administration, and Communication throughout the Post-Award Lifecycle section of the Post-Award Management Roles and Responsibilities page.

Program Income

Please notify CGA when it is determined that award activities generate income. CGA will then set up a new Program Income CF1 value to use to track these expenses and income transactions. Please refer to the Program Income page for more information.

Membership Programs

When a new sponsor is added to an existing Membership Award or Project, SPO will notify CGA and an additional contract will be created and added to the existing master Membership. Please refer to the Membership Programs page for more information.

Fabricating Equipment

UC Property Management has special Government Contract and Grant Equipment Requirements. Please refer to the Accounting for Fabricated Equipment page for more information.

Budget Revisions and Updating Award Chartstrings

Occasionally it is desirable to revise budget allocations to track expenses differently (for example, when a new Co-PI joins the project, or travel is required). Whenever a new chartstring is needed and/or created for use with a C&G fund value or a cost sharing CF1 value, CGA must update BFS and the interface mapping table in order for the new chartstring to function properly. Unmapped chartstrings will return errors for BFS journal transfer and/or in interfacing systems. Please refer to the Spending Award Funds page for more information.

Submit a Budget Template when Reallocating Award Funds to a New Chartstring

To reallocate funds to a new chartstring (i.e., not just redistributing funding between existing chartstrings) submit a new budget template to CGA showing the chartstring the funds are moving from (and the amount as a negative), and the new chartstring the funds are moving to (with the same amount as a positive). Like all budgets, the balance of the amounts must be zero to upload correctly.

Unless the sponsor’s requirements differ, it is not necessary to revise the budget for modular awards, so long as the total award amount does not change.

Submit a Budget Template when New Funds are Authorized or the Award is Modified

Submit a new budget template to CGA when a new funding period or amount is authorized by the sponsor, or the award agreement has been modified by SPO (such as when a new subaward is authorized). Submit a budget revision using the same form and following the same process used to create and upload an initial award budget (i.e., begin with an Unallocated Funds line and allocate to expense lines). The accounting date for the new budget submission should be the date the additional authority to spend is received.

Please note: Effective July 1, 2017, the method of uploading a budget changed. When a revised budget is received, CGA will update BFS and the interface mapping table within two business days (provided the information CGA receives is complete and accurate). When the revision or update is complete, CGA will notify the PI and RA that spending against the new budget and chartstrings may begin.

Accounts Receivable and Revenue Recognition

Each month CGA prepares and issues invoices to award sponsor in accordance with the terms and conditions of each award. Revenue is recognized as the expenditures incurred for both cost reimbursable and payment schedule awards. For fixed price contracts, revenue is recognized based on milestones. Please refer to the Revenue and Accounts Receivable Collections page for more information.

Cost Principles for Sponsored Awards

Only allowable, allocable, and reasonable technical and administrative costs may be charged directly to sponsored agreements. The Cost Principles for Sponsored Agreements policy outlines how all funds must be spent in accordance with university policy, applicable state and federal law, and sponsor terms and conditions.

Please note: Major Projects allow administrative costs to be charged to the award under specific circumstances. Please refer to the Guide to Major Projects and Charging Administrative Costs to Sponsored Projects page for more information.

Spending in Interfacing Systems

There are several mapping tables in BFS that interface data entered into BearBuy, Payroll, Travel and other feeder systems with the expanded C&G chartstrings in BFS.

Please refer to Processing Transactions in Interfacing Systems if you may be getting error messages in interfacing systems.

Maintaining Contacts

We are asking for your help in ensuring that information is delivered to the correct people by keeping CGA informed when staff and assignments change.

Research Assistants

When assignments change, please notify the CGA analyst assigned to your service area to update award information with the correct RA contact. To identify your CGA contact:

  • Log in to BFS
  • Select the RA Grants Workcenter
  • Select the Award Profile (under Award Information)
  • Enter the UC Berkeley Award/Contract Number in the Award ID field, or the Fund number in the Fund Code field

CSS-RA Managers and Supervisors, CAOs, Chairs, Deans, Effort Reporting Coordinators

The BFS RA Grants WorkCenter allows you to update your contact information directly. Please refer to the CGA Department Contact Maintenance (PDF) job aid for more information.

Principal Investigators

Please contact SPO for PI Changes in Affiliation and Absences from a Sponsored Project.