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Posted by on Jan 7, 2014

This Week in Grants News: Meet OMB’s Supercircular

OMB“This Week in Grants News” is a resource Management Concepts provides to keep you informed of important federal grants-related news from the week.

  • OMB Releases the Supercircular On December 26th, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) published the final rule for the Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards, known affectionately in the grants community as the “Supercircular.” The Supercircular will consolidate eight grants-related circulars into one uniform set of regulations for all grant recipient entities. OMB designed the Supercircular to reduce the administrative burden on recipients, improve transparency of the federal awards process, and protect federal funds from waste, fraud, and abuse.

The Supercircular contains more than 60 policy changes for grant recipients, awarding agencies, and auditors. These changes include:

  • Raising the Single Audit threshold to $750,000;
  • Standardizing the simple acquisition threshold to $150,000;
  • Requiring recipients to notify awarding agencies of potential conflict of interest in the administration of grant awards;
  • Revising , adding, and eliminating  selected  items of cost;
  • Providing new recipients the opportunity to indefinitely elect a de minimis indirect cost rate of 10%  of Modified Total Direct Costs; and
  • Allowing recipients to apply for a one-time extension of a negotiated indirect cost rate for up to four years.

In February 2013, OMB released a draft guidance of the Supercircular that contained a substantial change to audit requirements. OMB had proposed to streamline the Single Audit process by eliminating seven compliance requirements from the A-133 Compliance Supplement. The final Supercircular, however, retains all fourteen compliance requirements.

The Supercircular provisions will become applicable to federal awards on December 26, 2014. The audit requirements will apply to all audits of fiscal years beginning on or after December 26, 2014.

The full text of the Supercircular can be found here.

Management Concepts grant training courses will provide you with the latest information on the Supercircular to help your entity prepare for the upcoming changes. Additionally, our Federal Grants Update 2014 course will focus primarily on how the Supercircular will affect the grants community. More information about the Federal Grants Update 2014 course can be found here.

  • 2013 Single Audit Deadline Extended (Again) OMB has extended the 2013 Single Audit submission deadline to February 28, 2014. The deadline extension is due to the prolonged approval process for the SF-SAC 2013 Data Collection Form. For more information, visit the Federal Audit Clearinghouse.
  • Lawmakers Put Finishing Touches on Spending Bill Last month, Congress approved a two-year budget agreement. Since then, members of the House and Senate Appropriations Committees have been negotiating on how to allocate more than $1 trillion to specific government agencies and programs. Leading members of the Appropriations Committees expect to release a final bill by the end of this week, with Congressional approval anticipated before January 15th. Federal News Radio provides additional information about the appropriations process. National Journal also provides a “Budgeting 101” resource that explains the federal budgeting process.
  • Social Security Death Data: Additional Action Needed to Address Data Errors and Federal Agency Access The GAO released a report that examined the accuracy of the Social Security Death File and the accessibility of this file for other agencies. The Death File is an important tool used by the federal government to reduce improper payments. Legislation has been introduced in both chambers of Congress to expand access to the Death File. Read the GAO report here.

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