NIH GUIDE, Volume 21, Number 43, November 27, 1992

P.T. 34


  Grants Administration/Policy+ 

National Institutes of Health

These core principles will serve to guide Institutes and Centers

(I/Cs) in their funding decisions on Research Project Grants (RPGs)

in FY 1993.  In general, these principles are similar to those

developed for FY 1992.

Non-Competing RPGs

1.  The award of non-competing grants at committed levels is the

cornerstone of the NIH Financial Management Plan and is the basis of

our credibility with the Congress and the scientific community.

2.  Non-competing grants, on the average, cannot exceed 4 percent

over the prior budget period, taking into account one-time, non-

recurring costs such as equipment.

3.  Every effort will be made to accommodate shifts in the NIH fiscal

situation.  If conditions are such that funding at the committed

levels is not possible, the I/Cs will consult with the Deputy

Director for Extramural Research, NIH, to determine an appropriate


Competing RPGs

1.  The average total cost of the cohort of competing grants in one

fiscal year will not increase by more than the Biomedical Research

and Development Price Index (BRDPI), 5.08 percent in FY 1993, over

the cohort of competing grants in the previous fiscal year (including

Small Business Innovation Research grants).  Given the appropriation

level for FY 1993, some I/Cs may not be able to provide an increase

consonant with the BRDPI.

2.  In making funding decisions, I/Cs should factor in the total

costs of a grant, especially at the margin.

3.  Budgetary reductions will be achieved through a combination of

initial review and Council/Board recommendations, program and staff

review for cost allowability and reasonableness, and programmatic

adjustments, where necessary, to arrive at an appropriate funding


4.  Adjustments made on the basis of initial review or Council/Board

recommendations, or determinations of the allowability/reasonableness

of costs, as well as programmatic adjustments to arrive at an award

level will be specifically documented.  These may include adjustments

of specific budget items, reductions in investigator effort, or

decreases in the number of specific aims.  The I/Cs plans, i.e.,

general rationale and methodology, for programmatic adjustments will

be based on considerations at the program level.

5.  Award reductions of 25 percent or more below the IRG recommended

level on a single grant application may require a revised statement

of specific aims and a revised budget from the principal

investigator, properly countersigned by the institution, which must

be reviewed and approved by program and grants management staff.

Program staff, in consultation with the principal investigator and

grants management staff, will decide if a new statement of specific

aims is required.

6.  For competing continuation grants, one factor in arriving at the

award amount will be the level of support in prior years and the

extent to which the I/C can permit growth within the existing

constraints on increases in average costs.

7.  The average length of research project grants will be four years

(excluding Small Business Innovation Research grants).


For further information, contact the grants manager or Health

Scientist Administrator responsible for your grant.


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