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Department Responsibilities

Administrative Responsibilities 

The Principal Investigator (PI) is responsible for the technical direction of the sponsored project and for the authorization of all expenditures to be charged to that project. The Principal Investigator is responsible for expending funds in compliance with agency, state and University regulations, and for ensuring that project-specific costs are reasonable, allocable and allowable on that project.

To aid the Principal Investigator in meeting this responsibility, the Department Administrator ensures that applicable restrictions are clearly defined in the award notification for the sponsored award. The Department and College Business Administrators, with the support of the OSRP staff, serve in a stewardship capacity over sponsored research projects by monitoring expenditures for compliance with regulations.

The Office of Sponsored Research and Programs (OSRP) is responsible for providing training and information to the Department / College Business Administrators to enable them to review expenditure requests for compliance with agency and University restrictions. There are some specific expenditure documents that still must pass through the OSRP approval. These documents will be identified in the award notification, and include but are not limited to documents for the following purposes:

  • Purchase Requisition for Equipment within the last six months of the project
  • Purchase Requisition for Service using the Sponsored Project Contractual Agreement
  • All expenditure reallocation and correction/cost transfers involving grant cost center
  • Payroll reallocation  
  • Journal reallocation  
  • Vouchers uses for reallocating from state to grant or from grant to state cost centers

Project Accounting

Principal investigators are responsible for assigning costs to the appropriate sponsored project cost center at the time the expenses are incurred. The charges must be allocated to the cost center(s) based on the project(s) receiving the benefit from the item or service. The PI's signature on expenditure documents certifies that the charge is reasonable, allocable, and allowable on the sponsored project that is paying the charge. The Uniform Guidance 2 CFR 200 requires that the PI or their designee sign all expenditure documents on the management of grant funds. 

Project expenses are posted to the PeopleSoft accounting system. Each department has access to run its own project accounting reports and is responsible for the timely reconciliation of its project accounts and providing information to the Principal Investigator(s) regarding the financial condition of their projects. Information on reconciling accounts can be found in the UHD policy statements. Department Business Administrators should request assistance from their College Business Administrator if they have any questions about how to reconcile their accounts. The Principal Investigator(s) may request a copy of the report for his/her award from his/her college/department business manager. Questions regarding any problem on the monthly accounting reports should be directed to the originating department (e.g., Payroll, Accounts Payable, General Accounting).

Peoplesoft Updates Related to Federal Grants

A new warning message has been created in the Finance System to alert users when a document may contain an unallowed expense account on a federal cost center.

Accounts Normally Not Allowed on Federal Funds

When users enter a federal fund code on a voucher, requisition, PO, or journal line, the Finance System will give a warning message when the document is saved if the same line contains an account that is normally not allowed on federal funds.  The warning message will indicate the voucher, requisition, PO, or journal line number and the distribution (cost center) line number that contains the federal fund code and unallowed account. The message will appear when the document is saved.  If more than one line has a federal fund code and unallowed account, the message will repeat for each line with this combination.  Unless the account or cost center is changed, the message will continue to appear each time the document is saved and will appear each time the document is opened by a workflow approver.  It is only a warning message, so it will not stop the user from processing the document.

UH System is in the process of implementing PeopleSoft Grants Module. Updates regarding the same will be  poseted once it is available.

Project Closeout

To ensure timely and accurate award closeout and project cost center inactivation while maintaining compliance with applicable laws and guidelines from the sponsoring agency and the University policy as a whole.The terms and conditions contained and referenced in the sponsor's Notice of Award (NOA) must be reviewed to ensure accuracy and compliance in managing awards. The award project cost centers must be reviewed monthly by the responsible Department Business Administrator (DBA) and the Principal Investigator (PI) to ensure that all expenses are allowed.

At closeout, the department will have a period of time (usually 30 days) following the award expiration date to finalize all expenditures, release all encumbrances and resolve all outstanding budget and compliance issues on the award. The Office of Sponsored Research will submit all invoices and final reports in accordance to agency guidelines. Late reporting should have the prior approval of the sponsor.

After all final financial reports are submitted to the sponsor, OSRP will begin the process of inactivating the cost center in the financial system by first clearing all encumbrances and zeroing out the budget, liabilities and equity. This is in accordance to University policy. 


90 days prior to the expiration date of the award, the department business administrator (DBA) and principal investigator (PI) should review the project status including the financial reports

At expiration, OSRP and /or the DBA should notify the principal investigator (PI) regarding the award expiration and the requirements due (technical reports, pending charges etc).  At this point, the department has additional time (usually 30 days) to get all final expenses incurred during the period of performance posted.

30 days after expiration, all expenses should be posted to the cost center with the exception of sub-recipient final invoices. The DBA will notify the OSRP regarding any pending invoices and/ or to initiate a closeout of the project.