FAQ

Budgets

Faculty may cost share a portion of their effort if they are not 100% committed to teaching and other academic duties. In addition, third parties can provide cost sharing. The researchers should obtain a letter from the third party on letterhead from an authorized official that indicates that party will provide cost sharing in the amount that is required. The PI can also request cost sharing from the department or college.

Cost sharing is the provision of internal university funds or third party funds in support of a project funded by a sponsor. Most sponsors do not require cost sharing; if it is not required, you should not provide cost sharing as part of your budget.

If the sponsor requires cost sharing, you can cost share in two ways - cash or in-kind. A cash match is a match of dollars. An in-kind match is a match of services. Typically, faculty will provide in-kind cost sharing through donation of their effort.

Faculty must be cautious not to over-commit effort. Faculty are not permitted to work more than 100% of their time (except in limited circumstances). All cost-shared effort donated to sponsored activity must fit into the 100% available. Generally, faculty cannot commit more than 25%.

A faculty buyout occurs when effort is conducted during the academic term and charged to a research grant or contract. Consequently academic term salaries shall not be augmented either in rate or in total amount for research performed during the academic term. When part of a faculty member’s services are to be charged as project costs, it is expected that the faculty member will be relieved of an equal part or all of his or her regular teaching or other obligations.
Summer salary is compensation paid to academic appointed faculty that perform research on a grant or contract during the summer months of May, June, July, and August. For grant and contract funded research, Summer Salary is limited to 3 months (SBU’s academic year is generally 9 months). To calculate summer salary simply divide your academic year salary by 9 and then multiply it by 3 (or the portion of the summer available to you after teaching, other duties, and/or vacation time have been accounted for). Please note that certain external sponsors may have their own policies regarding summer salary payments to faculty and/or principal investigators.
Principal Investigators should include salary and fringe benefits in the proposal for effort that they will apply to the project unless it is prohibited by the sponsor. The salary can be paid by the sponsor or can be donated by the university (cost-sharing). PIs typically must obtain Chair and Dean approval for cost shared salary. SOM personnel can only cost share 5% of their time at any given time.

To develop your own budget, you should consider including the following line items which are included in most budgets:

  • Salaries and Wages
  • Fringe Benefits
  • Materials and Supplies
  • Equipment
  • Travel
  • Other Direct Costs (includes subrecipient and services agreements)
  • Facilities and Administrative Costs

For the development of most sponsor budgets, you can use one of the templates on OSP's website to assist in developing the budget. See this link for budget forms. OSP will review your budget prior to submission to the sponsor to ensure compliance with sponsor, university, and RFSUNY’s requirements. Some departments are staffed with a research coordinator or Departmental Administrator who can provide support in proposal preparation.

Sponsored research projects are considered “on campus” if they reside in any building or on any property owned by the university and the majority of project effort is expended at that site, no matter the location. Such projects must apply the “on campus” F&A rate to their budget and expenditures.
Yes, generally F&A should be applied to all sponsored projects. Nevertheless, there are a couple of exceptions to this rule. If the sponsor has a written policy that restricts the rate to a lower percentage than the university's negotiated rate, please notify OSP. OSP will review the sponsor's policy and will make a determination on the use of the sponsor's rate.

The RFSUNY/SBU negotiates a Facilities and Administration rate agreement that provides the rate to be charged depending on the type of sponsored project. RFSUNY/SBU’s Cognizant Office is DHHS.

F&A stands for Facilities & Administrative costs (sometimes called IDC, Indirect Costs). These are actual costs incurred by the university in support of sponsored activities that cannot be identified readily and specifically to a project. The rate used by RFSUNY/SBU is negotiated with the federal government. Among other expenses, it includes the cost of departmental and central administrative support, building and equipment use, and library services.

Fringe benefits are retirement and health insurance benefits associated with salaries. Medicaid and workers compensation are also included in fringe benefits. For current rates visit this page.

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