NIH Grants Policy Statement
Part II: Terms and Conditions of NIH Grant Awards
The chapter uses the following definitions:
To provide support for these types of activities, an IC must have specific statutory authority allowing construction or modernization. Even if NIH has this authority, a grantee may not incur costs for any of these activities unless NIH specifically authorizes such costs.
NIH generally solicits applications, and makes awards, for construction or modernization under grants or cooperative agreements specifically for that purpose. The grantee retains the primary responsibility for the project as a whole, including all phases of design and construction. When needed, NIH staff provides technical assistance in designing, constructing, and commissioning the facility and coordinating collaboration with other IC-funded construction activities. Under cooperative agreements, there is substantial scientific/programmatic staff involvement during the performance of the activity.
In addition, an applicant/grantee may propose to undertake an A&R project(s) under a grant whose primary purpose is other than construction or modernization. NIH characterizes these A&R projects as "minor" or "major," depending on the type of activity proposed and the cost of the project. An A&R project under a grant whose purpose is other than construction or modernization that costs $500,000 or less in direct costs is generally treated as minor A&R. If a recipient believes a post-award change that would result in an A&R project of $500,000 or less in direct costs meets the definition of construction, it should notify the GMO in order for the IC to determine whether it is construction and whether the IC has the necessary statutory authority. The requirements that apply to minor A&R projects are addressed in IIA. Minor A&R projects are not required to satisfy all of the requirements of this chapter. Major A&R projects are subject to the requirements of this chapter as indicated.
Except where indicated, the requirements in this chapter apply to NIH grant-supported construction or modernization in lieu of the requirements in IIA. For major A&R projects, this chapter applies to the A&R activity only and IIA pertains to the other grant-supported activities under the same award, if any. However, there may be areas of overlap (e.g., a rebudgeting action that causes a minor A&R project to become a major A&R project). See Exhibit 11 for a summary of the requirements specified in this chapter and their potential applicability to construction, modernization, or major A&R.
This chapter addresses all aspects of grant-supported construction, modernization, and major A&R from application through closeout. Due to the size and complexity of these activities, this chapter describes in detail requirements and recipient responsibilities related to procurement of construction services (see Procurement Requirements for Construction Services below). Applicants and grantees also should refer to the construction grant program regulations (42 CFR 52b), which, by their terms, apply to construction and modernization grants as well as major A&R under a research grant mechanism; 45 CFR part 74 or 92; and program guidelines, as applicable. Questions concerning construction or modernization grants or major A&R requirements or policies should be directed to the GMO or other official designated in the NoA.
In addition to any program-specific eligibility criteria, only public or private non-profit entities located in the United States or in U.S. territories or possessions are eligible to apply for construction or modernization grants. For-profit organizations and foreign organizations are not eligible to receive NIH construction or modernization grants.
Construction grant applicants are required to apply in response to a specific FOA. RFAs generally are used to solicit construction or modernization grant applications. PAs also may be issued to solicit construction or modernization grant applications for ongoing programs for which applications may be submitted under multiple cycles or years.
In addition to the FOA, NIH awarding ICs also may develop program guidelines that include detailed policy and procedural information applicable to specific construction and modernization grant programs/activities. Any program-specific requirements will be included in or referenced in the FOA and NoA. Applicants should consult the FOA and program guidelines, if any, when applying for construction or modernization grants.
Construction and modernization grant applications and applications requesting funding for a major A&R project are subject to peer review. Specific review criteria are included in the FOA.
Construction and modernization grants usually involve a single award, covering more than one year, made on the basis of an application for the entire project. Incremental funding (budget periods) within a project period normally is not used for construction or modernization grants and funding may be limited by the requirements of Federal appropriations law (31 U.S.C. §1552(a)) which may limit NIH's ability to approve no-cost extensions. Grantees must consult with the GMO if it is expected that the construction or modernization activity is unlikely to be concluded within the project period specified in the NoA.
Unlike other grants awarded by NIH, under which a grantee's signature is not required to indicate acceptance of an award, under construction and modernization grants, the AOR must sign the NoA and return it to the GMO to indicate acceptance of the terms and conditions of award.
NIH expects that the applicant holds (or will hold) fee simple title (i.e., absolute ownership of real property or absolute title to land, free of any claims against the title) to the property or other estate or interest in the site (e.g., leasehold interest) on which the construction, modernization, or major A&R is performed. NIH will determine whether an applicant meets this requirement as part of the administrative review of an application.
The applicant must include with the application a legal opinion describing the interest the applicant has in the performance site. The legal opinion should describe any mortgages or other foreclosable liens on the property, including the principal amount of the mortgage (and rate of interest); the dates of the mortgage; the terms and conditions of repayment; the appraised value of the property; and any provisions designed to protect the Federal interest in the property.
The requirements for grantees to share in the cost of the project are set forth in 42 CFR 52.b.6, What is the rate of federal financial participation? Unless otherwise specified by statute, the rate of federal financial participation in a construction project cannot be more than 50 percent of allowable construction or modernization costs. The NIH can waive this requirement; however, it is not automatic and must be requested from the IC prior to application submission.
Matching may be in the form of allowable costs incurred by the grantee or a contractor under the grant. NIH generally does not allow grantees to use the value of third party in-kind contributions as a source to meet a matching requirement; however, the GMO may allow third party in-kind contributions included in the application budget on an exception basis. Third party in-kind contributions are the value of non-cash contributions provided by non-Federal third parties. Third party in-kind contributions may be in the form of real property, equipment, supplies and other expendable property and the value of goods and services directly benefiting and specifically identifiable to the project or program. To be allowable as matching, costs and in-kind contributions (if authorized) must meet the allowability and documentation requirements of 45 CFR part 74.23 or 92.24, as applicable. Costs and third party in-kind contributions claimed as matching also are subject to the requirements in IIA that apply to the expenditure of NIH funds.
The source and amount of funds proposed by an applicant to meet a matching requirement must be identified in the application. The applicant also will be required to demonstrate that the funds are committed or available at the time of, and for the duration of, the award. Exception to "cash on hand" will require negotiation with the NIH prior to award. This may take the form of an assurance, as specified by the NIH awarding IC. The amount of NIH (Federal) funds awarded, combined with the non-Federal share, will constitute the total approved budget as shown in the NoA. The prior approval and other dollar thresholds contained in this chapter are based on the total approved budget unless otherwise specified. Downward adjustments to the matching requirement after award are a prior approval action. If NIH approval is not received in advance it is considered a violation of the terms and conditions of the construction award and may warrant enforcement action.
In addition to sharing in the costs of a construction or modernization grant, the grantee must ensure the availability of sufficient funds for operation (or continued operation) of the facility when construction or modernization is completed to allow the effective use of the facility for the grant-supported purposes.
Construction, modernization, and major A&R activity usually is carried out through one or more contracts under the grant. Therefore, the circumstances of the procurement are critical to the successful completion of the grant-supported project. Grantee procurement must comply with the requirements specified in 45 CFR parts 74.40 through 74.48 or in part 92.36, as applicable. Grantees must use only those contracting methods that will:
Unless otherwise authorized by NIH, all work associated with NIH grant-supported construction, modernization, or major A&R must be procured by formal advertising, resulting in lump-sum, fixed-price contracts using the Design-Bid-Build model. NIH may authorize other procurement methods and other types of contracts when sealed bidding is impractical (see Construction-Alternate Contracting Methods). The grantee must obtain NIH approval of final construction documents both before bids or proposals are solicited and prior to the award of the contract. The grantee must ensure that the project is completed in accordance with the approved plans and specifications or secure NIH approval of any changes that materially alter the scope or costs of the project, use of space, or functional layout.
The two basic means of ensuring that a contract can be awarded at, or very near, the budgeted amount are accurate cost estimating and the use of bid alternates.
A precise description of the scope of work, specifications, materials, and construction techniques will facilitate accurate cost estimating by the grantee and, ultimately, the responsive bidders. The description of the scope of work is especially important when multiple contracts will be awarded in support of the same project, because each contractor must know exactly what is involved in the portions of the job being bid.
Where practical, the grantee may request in the invitation for bids, alternates to the base bid which are keyed to specified, and explicitly stated, changes in the project scope, materials, or construction techniques. The invitation may contain either additive alternates (adjustments increasing the amount of the base bid), or deductive alternates (adjustments reducing the amount of the base bid), or both. Additive alternates will make it possible to incorporate necessary features that otherwise would not have been included in the project as long as the features do not expand the scope of the peer reviewed and approved project. Alternates that are selected may be included in determining the low aggregate bid.
If, notwithstanding the use of deductive alternates, all bids exceed the funds available, the grantee may:
If the NIH-supported project is less than the entire facility or project, the grantee must obtain bids or proposals that provide the costs for that portion of the total job that will be paid by NIH funds and any required matching. This may be done in one of the following ways:
Invitations for bids must stipulate a time for completion of the project, expressed either in calendar days or as a fixed date, for each prime contract to be awarded under the project.
At the option of the grantee, a liquidated damages provision may be included in the contract, allowing for assessment of damages when the contractor has not completed the construction by the date specified in the contract. Liquidated damages must be realistic and justified and must be approved by NIH before solicitation. Where damages are assessed, any amounts paid belong to the grantee.
The traditional three-phase project delivery method in which the grantee contracts with separate entities for each the design and construction phase of a project. It begins with a project design phase, followed by the construction bid phase (including solicitation and selection of a construction contractor), and then the active construction phase.
The use of a contracting method other than Design-Bid-Build, including the use of construction management services or design-build services as described below, may be authorized by NIH when cost, time, and quality benefits will result. In making such determinations, NIH will consider the scope of the project, estimated cost, and other factors deemed relevant. NIH approval must be received before the grantee begins the process of using an alternate contracting method.
If a construction management firm is currently employed, the grantee may choose to authorize that firm to perform the construction work. Such authorization requires NIH prior approval and the price for the work involved must not exceed the GMP also approved by NIH.
Use of construction management services, under which the grantee contracts for technical consultation during the design stage of a project and for organization and general project oversight of construction activities during the construction phase, is considered professional services and, therefore, may be procured on a negotiated basis rather than by formal advertising. However, the services of CMs may be procured by formal advertising in those cases where State or local governments prohibit the award of construction management contracts on a negotiated basis. Where bids are invited, the bidders should be pre-qualified. Under this procedure, the CM, operating as a member of a grantee-architect-CM team, is responsible for cost estimates during the design and construction as well as cost control, review of design(s) with a view toward value engineering, consultation on construction techniques, construction coordination and scheduling, and oversight of all construction activities. The CM's fee is considered an eligible cost for the purpose of determining the total eligible cost of the project.
A CM-at-Risk is considered a sole proprietorship, partnership, corporation, or other legal entity that assumes the financial risk for construction, rehabilitation, alteration, or repair of a facility at a GMP GMP (see Construction-Alternate Contracting Methods-Guaranteed Maximum Price). The CM-at-Risk serves as a general contractor and provides consultation to the client during the design of the facility and through construction. The terms of the CM's employment must be such as to preclude any conflict of interest. The grantee may authorize the CM as Agent to become the CM-at-Risk to perform the construction services when authorized by NIH.
Under this procedure:
Design-build is a method of project delivery in which one entity works under a single contract with the project owner to provide design and construction services. In design-build contracting, construction firms respond to a request for proposals by submitting building designs that meet the grantee's performance requirements within a GMP (see Construction-Alternate Contracting Methods-Guaranteed Maximum Price) covering all architectural, engineering, and construction services required. The design-build firm must be selected in a manner that will allow maximum feasible competition. Because of the nature of design-build contracting, the following departures from formal advertising are authorized:
The selection of a design-build firm must be accomplished by a process that includes the following activities:
On all design-build projects, the grantee must:
Under this procedure:
Unless otherwise specified in the NoA, following award acceptance for construction or modernization grants or award of funds for a major A&R project, the grantee may begin the design phase of the award, which includes the review, and approval of the design documents with the IC program or other designated NIH staff. Funds for construction, modernization, or major A&R will not be released until the final architectural drawings, specifications, construction schedule, and updated cost estimates are reviewed and approved by the NIH IC unless otherwise indicated in the NoA. The release of funds is accomplished by a revised NoA. The purpose of the NIH design review is to ensure that applicable design standards, including, as applicable, the minimum requirements contained in 42 CFR 52b.12 (see Minimum Requirements for Construction, Modernization, and Major A&R below), have been incorporated into the working drawings and specifications to ensure that program requirements are met, and that the facility will suitably accommodate the activities for which it is planned to be used.
Advertisement for bids may be initiated only after approval of the final construction documents by the NIH awarding IC. The procurement methods to be employed, including any plans that involve a construction management contract with a GMP clause, must be reviewed and approved by the NIH awarding IC.
The minimum design requirements for NIH grant-supported construction or modernization are set forth in 42 CFR 52b.12. The NIH Design Requirements Manual incorporates the regulatory standards for construction or modernization grants and those for major A&R projects. The NIH Design Requirements Manual is available at http://orf.od.nih.gov/PoliciesAndGuidelines/BiomedicalandAnimalResearch FacilitiesDesignPoliciesandGuidelines/DesignRequirementsManualPDF.htm.
Specific requirements for construction grants are contained in Appendix A, "References, Design and Safety Guidelines, Health and Safety Regulations, Codes and Standards," of the NIH Design Requirements Manual. The grantee will be subject to the standards in effect at the time of design or construction (modernization or A&R), as appropriate. Working drawings and specifications submitted for NIH approval (see Design Documentation Requirements above) must conform to the minimum standards in the NIH Design Requirements Manual. The NIH Design Requirements Manual also include policies, design standards, and technical criteria for use in planning, designing, and constructing or altering/renovating buildings owned or leased for use by NIH. Grantees are not subject to the NIH site specific requirements contained in the NIH Design Requirements Manual but should meet the intended design objectives in such cases.
Grantees also must ensure that each project meets the requirements of the applicable State and local codes and ordinances. Where State or local codes are proposed as a basis for facility design in lieu of the NIH design requirements, a prior determination must be made by the NIH awarding IC that the specific State or local code is equivalent to, or exceeds, NIH requirements. If State and local codes or requirements exceed the design requirements set forth in NIH regulations, the NIH Design Requirements Manual or program guidelines, the more stringent requirements will apply.
In planning and designing construction or modernization projects, recipients must consider that the facility is generally subject to an extended usage requirement, e.g., 10 or 20 years, after the date of occupancy and it should be constructed accordingly.
NIH will monitor compliance with design requirements during the project's design and construction phase. Grantees (or applicants) with questions concerning the applicability of requirements contained in the NIH Design Requirements Manual should consult with the NIH PO.
Labor standards and equal employment opportunity requirements for federally assisted construction must be specified in the information provided to potential bidders/offerors on contracts for construction services under NIH construction and modernization grants and major A&R projects and must be included in the resulting contract documents (see 45 CFR 74, Appendix A, and 45 CFR 92.36(i)). NIH construction and modernization grants and major A&R projects (and contracts under them) are not subject to the requirements of the Davis-Bacon Act, unless the authorizing statute for the program/award specifically requires compliance.
Contracts (and subcontracts) for construction (including modernization or major A&R) are subject to the requirements of EO 11246 (September 24, 1965), as amended and implemented in 41CFR 60-1 by OFCCP, DoL. The grantee is required to include the "Equal Opportunity Clause" at 41 CFR 60-1.4(b) in any contract for construction services under the grant. The contractor must be directed to include this clause in any applicable subcontracts.
In addition, grantees and contractors providing construction services under NIH grants are required to comply with the solicitation and contract requirements for affirmative action specified in 41 CFR 60-4 for contracts in specified geographical areas that will exceed $10,000. These requirements are specified in the "Notice of Requirement for Affirmative Action to Ensure Equal Employment Opportunity" and the "Standard Federal Equal Employment Opportunity Construction Contract Specifications" subsections of 41 CFR 60-4.
The OFCCP regulations also require that the grantee notify the applicable OFCCP regional, area, or field office when it expects to award a contract for construction services that will exceed $10,000.
Further information about these requirements and the full text of these regulations are available at http://www.dol.gov/ofccp/.
Pursuant to 41 CFR 60-1.8, for any contract for construction services that will exceed $10,000, the grantee must require that each prospective contractor:
Contractors and subcontractors providing construction services under NIH construction or modernization grants or major A&R projects with contracts or subcontracts exceeding $100,000 are subject to the requirements of the Contract Work Hours and Safety Standards Act, 40 U.S.C. 3701, et seq., concerning the payment of overtime and the maintenance of healthful and safe working conditions.
Wages paid any laborer or mechanic employed by the contractor or subcontractor must be computed on the basis of a standard workweek of 40 hours. For all work in excess of the standard workweek, mechanics and laborers shall be compensated at a rate not less than one-and-a-half times the basic rate of pay. If this requirement is violated, the contractor or subcontractor is liable to the employee for the unpaid wages and may be liable to the Federal government for liquidated damages. NIH or the grantee may withhold otherwise payable funds to satisfy any such liability. The statute also specifies penalties for intentional violation of these requirements.
Further, pursuant to standards issued by the Secretary of Labor, no contractor or subcontractor under an NIH grant shall require any laborer or mechanic employed in the performance of the contract to work in surroundings or under working conditions that are unsanitary, hazardous, or dangerous to an individual's health or safety. Violation of these requirements may be cause for debarment from future Federal contracts or financial assistance.
During or after the period of performance of a contract for construction services under an NIH grant, if it is discovered that an employee is entitled to wages but cannot be located for the purposes of payment (or for some reason refuses to accept payment), the grantee may eventually have to repay the Federal government. Therefore, NIH suggests that the contractor be required to turn over any unclaimed wages to the grantee.
The grantee should notify the GMO that an escrow account has been established in the affected employee's name and should maintain the account for 2 years (or longer if required by State or local law) following the completion of the contract. Upon the expiration of this period, any amounts still unclaimed will be disbursed by refunding to NIH either the entire amount, if the construction, modernization, or major A&R project was 100 percent funded by NIH, or an amount representing the percentage of NIH participation in the project. If the project was funded by more than one NIH or HHS program at differing rates, the refund should be based on an average percentage calculated by weighting each program's rate of participation by the dollar amount of that program's contribution.
If the contractor has made a reasonable effort to locate the employee by having mail forwarded and contacting the employee's union, the grantee need not repeat such attempts. If there is reason to believe that the contractor's efforts to locate employees that are due wages were not thorough, the grantee should attempt to locate the employees. Doing so will reduce the likelihood of future claims against the grantee.
If any wages held in escrow are paid to an employee or an employee's legal representative while the account is maintained, a complete report must be made to the GMO when the account is closed.
Unless alternate requirements are specified in the governing statute:
Statutory provisions may specify alternate requirements for the length of the grantee's accountability obligations, the Federal right of recovery, or waivers. To the extent statutory provisions differ from the requirements of 42 CFR 52b and/or 45 CFR part 74 or 92, including those described in this subsection, the statutory provisions, as reflected in the terms and conditions of the award, apply.
Real property constructed, modernized, or otherwise altered as part of a major alteration with NIH grant support may not be conveyed, transferred, assigned, mortgaged, leased, or in any other manner encumbered by the grantee, except as expressly authorized in writing by NIH. If the grantee defaults in any way on a mortgage, the grantee shall immediately notify the GMO by telephone and in writing. If the mortgagor intends to foreclose, the grantee must notify the GMO in writing at least 30 days before the foreclosure action is initiated.
The mortgage agreement must specifically allow, in the case of default, that NIH or its designee may assume the role of mortgagor and continue to make payments. If NIH (or its designee) chooses not to assume the role of mortgagor, the mortgagee (grantee) must pay NIH an amount equal to the share of the sales proceeds otherwise due the recipient (mortgagor) times the Federal share in the property.
Any NIH assignment of the property and mortgage responsibilities to any party other than NIH shall be subject to prior approval of the mortgagor.
To protect the Federal interest in real property constructed, or where applicable, improved with NIH grant funds, grantees shall record a NFI in the appropriate official records of the jurisdiction in which the property is located as required by 45 CFR 74.37 and the NIHGPS. The NFI is required when use and disposition conditions apply to the property as stated in the NoA. The time of recordation shall be when construction begins. The grantee should consult with the GMO prior to recording the NFI, if necessary, to determine if the NFI is required under the award. Fees charged for recording the NFI may be charged to the grant (see Allowable and Unallowable Costs and Activities in this chapter). A copy of the recorded NFI must be provided to the GMO within 10 days following the date of recordation. To obtain a sample NFI, contact the GMO.
Builder's risk insurance is required at the time construction begins. The insurance must cover potential losses after initiation, but before completion, of the construction or modernization caused by theft, fire, vandalism, and other types of accidental loss or damage to the structure.
Immediately upon completion of construction, a nongovernmental grantee shall, at a minimum, provide the same type of insurance coverage as it maintains for other property it owns, consistent with the minimum coverage specified below. "Completion of construction" means either the point at which the builder turns a facility constructed with NIH grant support, or portion of a facility modernized or modified under a major A&R project, (that conforms to the design and specifications approved by the NIH and is available for occupancy) over to the grantee (i.e., the date of the final acceptance of the building or portion of a building) or the date of beneficial occupancy, whichever comes first.
If title to real property constructed, modernized, or altered under a major A&R project under an NIH grant vests (or will vest upon completion) in the grantee, the following minimum insurance coverage is required:
Governmental grantees may follow their own insurance requirements. Federally owned property provided to a grantee for use need not be insured by the grantee.
The NIH awarding IC may waive one or both of the requirements above if the grantee shows that it is effectively self-insured against the risks involved. The term "effectively self-insured" means that the grantee has sufficient funds to pay for any damage to the facility, including total replacement if necessary, or to satisfy any liens placed against the facility. If the grantee claims self-insurance, the grantee must provide to NIH assurance that it has sufficient funds available to replace or repair the facility or to satisfy all liens. This assurance should state the source of the funds, such as the organization's endowment or other special funds set aside specifically for this purpose.
NIH construction grants require that the facility be used for biomedical or behavioral research for as long as needed for that purpose for the period prescribed in the NoA. The date of beneficial occupancy is the date that a facility constructed or modernized with NIH grant support conforming to the design and specifications approved by the NIH are available for occupancy and fully operational to carry out all intended facility/research activities. During that time, the grantee must use the facility for the originally authorized purpose unless it obtains prior approval from the NIH awarding IC to use the facility for an alternate purpose. To ensure a grantee's compliance with the facility usage requirement, the IC GMO will periodically (e.g., at least every two years) survey the recipient throughout the usage period and request a self-certification concerning continued use. NIH may also obtain the names of the investigator(s) occupying the space and an indication of their research interests. Most of the monitoring will be accomplished in this manner. However, NIH staff may perform periodic site visits to observe the use of the grant-supported space throughout the usage period. After the required usage period, NIH will no longer directly monitor the use of the space.
When use and disposition conditions apply to real property supported under an NIH award, the grantee may not convey, transfer, assign, mortgage, lease, or in any other manner encumber such property without the prior written approval from the awarding office. If the grantee decides that the grant-support space is no longer needed before the expiration of the period of Federal interest, the grantee must request written disposition instruction from the awarding office. This action must be done prior to the grantee's making any irreversible commitment related to property disposition. In this case, NIH may consider an alternate use of the facility or provide disposition instructions.
In determining whether to approve an alternate use of the facility, NIH will take into consideration the extent to which the facility will be used for:
The usage obligation may also be transferred to another facility with the prior approval of NIH. If approved, the remaining usage obligation shall be released from the original facility constructed with grant funds and transferred to the new facility. The grantee remains subject to all other requirements imposed by the NoA or successor document (if the change occurs following the period of grant support).
For disposition of property acquired on an amortized acquisition basis, the computation of the Federal share of real property acquired with long-term debt financing will be computed for each year of grant support in which Federal funds are used to meet all or a portion of the down payment and/or principal on the mortgage.
If a real estate transaction funded in whole or in part by NIH requires the use of a real estate appraisal (including, but not limited, to appraisals to determine the Federal share of real property and appraisals to determine required insurance levels), the appraisal must be performed by appraisers certified or licensed by the applicable State in accordance with the requirements established by Title XI of the Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery, and Enforcement Act of 1989, as amended (Public Law 101-73).
The following lists indicate types of costs and activities generally allowable and unallowable under NIH construction or modernization grants and major A&R projects unless otherwise noted in the FOA. The lists are not all-inclusive. Program guidelines, the NoA, and other terms and conditions of the award should be consulted for the specific costs allowable under a particular program or grant.
Major A&R is unallowable under foreign grants and foreign components in domestic grants.
The allowability and unallowability of costs and activities applies to the use of Federal funds and funds expended by the grantee to satisfy a matching requirement (see Matching Requirement in this chapter).
Allowable costs and activities include the following:
Unallowable costs and activities include the following:
Grantees must obtain written prior approval from the GMO for the following types of recipient-initiated project or budget changes:
The request for approval must include sufficient information to allow NIH review of the circumstance(s) and need for the proposed change. For changes affecting construction contracts, if the grantee receives written prior approval from the GMO, the grantee may make or authorize the approved modifications to the construction contract. Minor modifications to construction contracts may be made without NIH awarding IC prior approval. However, copies of all change orders to construction contracts must be retained as grant-related records (see Administrative Requirements—Monitoring—Record Retention and Access in IIA).
Two copies of each of the following documents must be submitted with each request for approval of minor A&R costs greater than $300,000, but not more than $500,000 (whether proposed in the application or as a post-award rebudgeting request):
When the proposed alteration is to occur in a building that is under construction or in an incomplete structure, two copies of the following documentation also must be provided:
Applicants/grantees undertaking A&R projects that will require NIH funding of more than $500,000 are subject to the review, approval, and documentation requirements included or referenced in this chapter for construction grants.
Immediately upon completion of construction, modernization, or alteration under a major A&R project the grantee should contact the awarding IC GMO. Under construction grants, the grantee will generally be required to submit the following documents within 90 days following the completion of the project as part of the closeout process:
In addition to the public policy requirements and objectives specified in IIA, grants for construction, modernization or major A&R projects are subject to the public policy requirements in this section. These requirements may be specified by statute, regulation, executive order, or policy, and apply regardless of the type of grantee. Exhibit 11 may be used as guidance; however, some of the requirements for construction or modernization grants or major A&R activities may not be applicable to your project or program. Specific questions about whether a particular requirement applies should be directed to the GMO of the awarding IC. Recipients of construction or modernization grants and funding for major A&R projects also must require contractors and subcontractors providing construction services to comply with certain Federal labor standards. These labor standards are discussed in Equal Employment Opportunity and Labor Standards in this chapter. Following are highlights of public policy requirements:
Because projects for construction, modernization, or major A&R activities have the potential to affect the environment, NIH requires that applicants for this type of support provide information on anticipated environmental impact as part of their just-in-time submission. Applicants may use the Review of Environmental and Other Impacts document that is available at http://dpcpsi.nih.gov/orip/documents/environmental_analysis_form_3-2009.pdf to supply this information. An alternate format can be used as long as equivalent environmental and other impacts information is provided.
The NIH will review the Environmental and Other Impacts information contained in the application to assess the level of environmental impact of the proposed project. It is the responsibility of NIH to determine which of the following will apply to the proposed project:
If NIH determines that an EA or an EIS is required, the applicant (recipient) must conduct the appropriate environmental review and provide the necessary documentation to NIH for review, approval, and processing. NIH will provide advice and assistance to the applicant (recipient), as necessary, concerning review procedures; evaluate the results of the review; and make the final decision on environmental impact as required by NEPA.
Applicants also must (1) provide a current listing and copies, as applicable, of all relevant licenses, permits, and/or other approvals required including, but not limited to, the State and local air, water quality, and zoning board reports, and (2) indicate the State, local, and regional planning authorities contacted or consulted regarding the application and briefly discuss the proposed facility with respect to regional development plans.
Applicants are not required to incur costs for extensive consultant services at the application stage; therefore, hiring of consultants to develop detailed data and elaborate presentations is discouraged and such costs generally will not be allowable as pre-award costs.