May 2015

Table of Contents

Controller’s Office

Grants & Contracts Accounting/Effort Report Updates

FYI and further distribution:

VCU Fiscal Year End - Remember that sponsored project expenditure and deposit transactions in Banner must adhere to the VCU Controller’s Office Year End Schedule 2015 in order to be included in June financial reporting/invoicing, and fiscal year financial data. The Year End Schedule may be found at: http://www.controller.vcu.edu/finreporting/yrendschedule.pdf. Encumbrances on terminated awards in Banner should be cancelled, or a change order done in eVA prior to June 25, unless the award/index is pending an official sponsor approved extension or continuation.

2015 Grants and Contracts Customer Service Survey - Recently Grant and Research Administrators were requested to participate in a G&C Customer Service Survey. The purpose of this survey is to collect information about the interactions you, as member of the research community, have had with Grants and Contracts Accounting (GCA). Additionally, this survey is intended to provide comparative results for review with the same survey conducted 3 years earlier.

Please be assured that your responses will be kept completely confidential and that your e-mail address will not be associated with your response. VCU’s Survey and Evaluation Research Laboratory is conducting this survey on behalf of the office of Grants and Contracts Accounting, and they will not provide any information that will identify individual responses. Survey results will only be reported in aggregate form. Your participation by 5/8/15 is greatly appreciated.

Final Expenditure Reports (FER) – Your assistance is needed. FERs issued by G&C Accountants and forwarded to Principal Investigators or Administrators for certification satisfy the required review of the final financial activity of the budget year or project year. This certification is required on all federal projects, and is consistently applied to all sponsored projects as verification that all expenditures charged to the sponsored project are for the purpose of the award, and in accordance with the agreement. The FER used by G&C Accountants has been recently revised to identify carry-forward (if applicable) to be requested by the P.I. on budget year awards where not already specifically allowed by sponsor award type. Non-compliance risks, inaccurate data in Banner, as well as the potential for unreimbursed or unreported costs on sponsored projects having to be recovered by departments, are greatly increased when an FER is not returned to the Accountant when requested.

Reminder: Until all Industry clinical trial billing is processed via the Oncore system, copies should continue to be provided by the Trial Coordinator or appropriate P.I. administrator to the gcacash@vcu.edu email address. This minimizes the risks of payments not being able to be associated with amounts billed.


Effort Reporting and ECRT Updates

***FAX Number change – Please use 804-828-8644 effective immediately

Thank you to administrators that recently attended the webinar on 4/23/2015 hosted by G&C entitled “Time & Effort Reporting on Your Federal Grants: The Way Forward”. Please email any questions to effortreport@vcu.edu.

Your assistance is needed with the upcoming and past due effort reporting deadlines:

Semester certifications period 12-25-14 to 05-09-15 are due by 08-14-15

Quarterly certifications period 12-10-14 to 03-09-14 are due by 06-14-15

Quarterly certifications period 09-10-14 to 12-09-14 were due by 03-14-15

Semester certifications period 08-10-14 to 12-24-14 were due by 03-21-15

***Mandatory compliance training will be coordinated for currently reported repeat overdue certifiers in the following category (to include clinical only certifiers):

Semi-Annual certifications period 06/10/14 to 12/09/14 were due by 04-21-15

Semi-Annual certifications period 12/10/13 to 06/09/14 were due by 10-21-14


Other Effort Links:

ECRT URL: https://ecrtprod.asauxweb.vcu.edu/ecrt
Effort Reporting's website: http://www.controller.vcu.edu/grants/effort.htm
Helpful Tools: http://www.controller.vcu.edu/grants/ECRThelpfultools.html
FAQs: http://www.controller.vcu.edu/grants/ECRTfaq.html

Grants and Contracts Accounting/Effort Reporting extends our gratitude to you for all that you do to assist our office and to minimize non-compliance risks on sponsored programs at VCU. Please don’t hesitate to contact a G&C/Effort Reporting staff member if at any time you have questions that cannot be answered by content on the Controller/G&C website.


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Procurement Services

Fiscal Year-End-Close Activities Calendar

Please access the below link for a list of Fiscal Year End transaction cutoffs pertaining to Procurement Services, including invoices, POs, requisitions, receiving, travel and personal expenses. Please make best attempts to process your transactions before the stated deadlines otherwise they may not be processed on time.

2015YearEndActivities_ProcurementSvcs.pdf


Annual Training for P-Cardholders and Reviewers

To ensure that cardholders and reviewers understand the University’s P-card policies and procedures, each person must successfully complete an Annual On-line Knowledge Test. You will be allowed three (3) attempts to achieve 90 points or higher test score.

The Blackboard training will give users the option to view a PowerPoint training and take the test or watch a video training that will ask test questions as you progress through the course. Cardholders must complete the P-Card training. Reviewers must complete the P-Card training and the reviewer training.

Training will be available in Blackboard Monday, May 11. An email will be sent to all cardholders and reviewers once the new training is available. This annual requirement must be completed by June 11, 2015 or your charge card privileges may be revoked. Anyone who has successfully completed training since March 1, 2015 has met the training requirement.

If you have questions about the upcoming training, please contact Corporate Card at Corpcard@vcu.edu.


Encumbering Chrome River Pre-Approvals in Banner

Travel Services has worked with VCU Technology Services over the past year to develop an automated feed to encumber pre-approvals in Banner. This new process eliminates the need for “shadow systems” and manual tracking of these allocated expenses.

Starting Monday May 4, 2015 all newly created and fully approved Chrome River pre-approvals will create budget encumbrances in Banner the following business day. This encumbrance will be liquidated in full when the expense report is fully approved and has attached the original pre-approval. It is important to note if the pre-approval is not attached to the expense report, the liquidation will not occur, and will require a manual liquidation of the encumbrance in Banner by the fiscal administrator.

For more information, please visit our website: https://procurement.vcu.edu/i-want-to/travel/chrome-river-enhancements-and-new-features/#encumbering.

If you have any questions, please contact Ashley Eline at elineae@vcu.edu.


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