Grant projects require reports describing how faithfully the proposal is being implemented (performance or programmatic reports) and how the funds are being expended (financial reports). The grant award documents usually include a schedule for any reports that must be submitted. The funding agency establishes the timeline for all performance and fiscal reports. Grant programs often require reports quarterly, semiannually, annually, at closure, or upon request from the funding agency. The agency is entitled to change its reporting expectations and process at any time during the grant period or request additional information or updates. The Project Director must not modify report due dates. Reports must be submitted by the dates identified by the funding agency. Late reporting will jeopardize funding for
the grant in question and can also negatively impact future funding from the agency under all of its grant programs. Project Directors should immediately forward information regarding due date changes to the Sponsored Project Office, Office for Finance, and their department administrator.
During the Kick-Off meeting, the SPO reviews the required reports and due dates. If the funding agency does not provide a specific reporting format, the SPO can help create a template to report the project’s progress in meeting the measurable objectives as shown in the original grant proposal.
Performance reports are the responsibility of the Project Director and should reflect the progress made in accomplishing the project objectives. The report should identify the project’s strengths, in addition to strategies which will correct any weaknesses in the program. Project Directors should also be prepared to explain the connection between grant expenditures and specific objectives and outcomes, if requested by the funding agency. Project Directors must be aware of the format, content requirements, and submission method of reports as soon as the project begins so the information needed for the reports may be collected throughout the duration of the project, especially if the report requires collection of data. Throughout the report preparation process, the Sponsored Projects Office is available to provide guidance and assistance to the Project Director. Performance reports are then submitted to the Sponsored Projects Office for review and submission to the agency.
Performance reports must be processed through the appropriate approval channels and submitted by the Project Director to SPO at least 5 days prior to agency due date. All programmatic reports must be reviewed and approved by the Project Director’s direct supervisor prior to submission. Program reports are provided to the Sponsored Projects Office for review at least five days prior to agency due date. All reports are reviewed by the Sponsored Projects Office prior to submission. Additional reports may be reviewed by the SPO post-submission to ensure the fidelity of the implementation of the program and allow for agile modifications in the implementation plan. Upon completion of the review process, the SPO submits the programmatic report to the agency with a copy to the Project Director and other appropriate officials.
Financial reports for the project must be developed by the Project Director and approved by the Office for Finance prior to submission. This requires complete records of project expenditures and documentation of any cost share for the project. Project Directors must allow sufficient time, at least five working days, for review and reconciliation of data and information prior to submission to the funding agency.
According to 2 C.F.R. §200.415, in order to assure that expenditures are proper and in accordance with the terms and conditions of federal awards and approved project budgets, all annual and final fiscal reports or vouchers requesting payment for federal grants must include a certification, signed by the Authorized Organization Representative (AOR) that reads as follows: “By signing this report, I certify to the best of my knowledge and belief that the report is true, complete, and accurate, and the expenditures, disbursements and cash receipts are for the purposes and objectives set forth in the terms and conditions of the Federal award. I am aware that any false, fictitious, or fraudulent information, or the omission of any material fact, may subject me to criminal, civil or administrative penalties for fraud, false statements, false claims or otherwise. (U.S. Code Title 18, Section 1001 and Title 31, Sections 3729- 3730 and 3801-3812).”
In order to ensure the required certification is signed by the AOR, all financial reports, invoices, and vouchers requesting payment for federal grants must be submitted by the Sponsored Projects Office. All financial reports, invoices and vouchers requesting payment for federal grants must be approved by the Office for Finance, signed by the AOR, and submitted by the Sponsored Project Office or the Office for Finance.