All expenditures must be routed to the Post-Award Grants Financial Management office for approval. The completed form should be signed by the Department head and Project Director before forwarding to Post-Award. Post-Award will provide the second signature and forward the paperwork to the appropriate Financial Services department.
Towson University is exempt from sales tax on items purchased in the state. Please present the tax exempt certificate when making purchases. In most cases Financial Services will not reimburse for sales tax.
Faculty members on a 10-month academic year appointment may earn up to 33% additional compensation from all sources on an annual, fiscal year basis during the Summer and Winter/minimester combined. Summer salary on sponsored projects is limited to 2 months. Compensation for Summer sponsored research activities must be consistent with the level of effort provided during the Summer and not the academic year.
Please refer to the Faculty Handbook Chapter 9, part II, section VII.
To pay a contingent staff member (New Hire [short-term]
or current contingent TU employee) from a grant:
If employee is of non-exempt status: Employee cannot
be a full time non-exempt employee. Employee CAN NOT
exceed working 100% of their time. If this is a short-term
New Hire, a TU application must be completed:
Payment may be hourly or flat rate depending
on the employment status.
Contingent I - appointed to a
position for six (6) months or less, a position that
is intermittent or seasonal in nature, or has a written
agreement as flat-rate exempt, not eligible for university
Contingent II – hired through
competitive recruitment to a position for more than
six (6) months, but no more than twelve (12) consecutive
months, eligible for university benefits
Exempt employee – Flat
Rate form (e.g. Faculty, Deans)
Non-Exempt employee – Timesheet/hourly
(e.g. Research Associates, Admin. Assistants)
Principal Investigators must file an "Employment Separation Form" with the Office of Human Resources for all regular and contingent employees who are separating employment. The form must be completed and returned to OHR at least two weeks before the employee's last day of work. Non-exempt employees should give at least two weeks written notice. Exempt employees should give at least 30-calendar days written notice.
When a student terminates his or her position with
your grant, you must terminate the student using
the Quick Change Form. This form can also be used
for changing the student's hourly rate and supervisor
change within the same department. If you are changing
the funding source of this position, you must terminate
this job and complete a new 311T for the new funding
Student Clearance Process
(To Put Student Employees on the Payroll)
1. If you are hiring a new
As the Hiring Department, you
must send the new employee to the
Office of Human Resources (OHR)
to complete the Federal Government's
Immigration & Naturalization Services
Each new employee must provide
proof of eligibility and identity
to work in the U.S.
Each new employee must complete
this process with OHR prior to
start of employment. This is a
Complete the 311T form, (Special
Payments Payroll Authorization)
for Payroll Office
2. OHR: Verification
of Employment & Eligibility- I-9
o Instructions for the I-9 Process
and a list of acceptable identification
documents can be found at http://www.uscis.gov/i-9 or
obtain this information from OHR.
o Report to OHR during scheduled
hours with original documents (copies
are not acceptable). OHR will establish
eligibility and instruct you further
on the employment process. Any
change in immigration status or
work authorization must be communicated
to OHR prior to the expiration
date of the document(s).
OHR will process I-9 forms
OHR is located on the first
floor of the Administration Building.
Bring the completed 311T Form
and Tax Residency Status Form (received
from OHR) to the Payroll Office
on the 4th floor of the Administration
Miscellaneous expense voucher should read "Stipend for attendance for (name of program) on (dates of program)."
Research stipend payments to Faculty and Employees – must follow the same paperwork as salary payments.
TU Students being paid a Research Grant Stipend
If a TU student is participating in a research grant or project, then the stipend will be paid via student payroll. That means the student must be on TU Payroll. If the student is already on TU Payroll, the PI/Department must complete the Grant Student Stipend Form. Then that form goes to OSPR Finance Office and they will complete the 311T. Both forms will then be sent to the Payroll Office for processing.
If the student is NOT on TU Payroll, then the PI/Department must complete the Grant Student Stipend Form and also give the student the Grant Student Stipend Checklist. Specific directions are written for the student of the process on the checklist. The 311T will still come from the OSPR Finance Office, but there are details of where the student needs to go next – i.e. OHR, then Payroll.
Please note that the 311T will bear the account code 502501 – Research Grant Stipend. The associated SS and Unemployment accounts, if applicable will be: 502502 Social Security Grant Research and 502503 Unemployment Comp Grant Research.
Participant Support Costs (travel, supplies, etc.) are to be reimbursed as described in the normal policies and procedures of the University for reimbursement and travel. Original receipts are required.
Stipends and participant support costs must be budgeted in the grant and supporting documentation will be requested.
For non-TU affiliated individuals, please use the Miscellaneous Expense Voucher and use the appropriate account code.
Note: Stipend payments are not for work related activity or for an hourly rate; no services are required to be performed by the stipend recipients. It is a set amount of money to be paid directly to the participant as an incentive for recruitment and participation in a specific project. Since the grant student stipend payment is being processed through the Payroll Office, a W2 will be mailed out to the student at the end of the calendar year. Depending on the student's tax status - the stipend payment may be taxable.
Please find attached the two forms: Graduate Research Stipend Form and the Grant Research Stipend Checklist
Contact Procurement Office before entering into an agreement with the consultant.
Request for Independent Contractor Services Over $500 Form
Invoice from consultant (can be multiple invoices)
** HONORARIUM: (Account #502123)
An honorarium is a small payment to a guest speaker, visiting scholars or other individual invited to provide a unique service to the University.
Letter of Invitation
Honorarium Request Application
Miscellaneous Expense Voucher
Payments can be made at time of event if stated in written agreement and Account Payable office receives request 20 days prior to event
** NOTE ** - All travel expenses must be included in the payment to the consultant/honoraria. Towson CANNOT make payments for travel on behalf of individual, they must be reimbursed. The only exception is for the Burkshire because it is located on TU property.
If your grant has scholarships budgeted, please contact email@example.com to make an appointment to discuss what process must be taken.
Office supplies, postage, local telephone costs, and memberships are unallowable as direct cost on most sponsored projects. Except if costs incurred are for the sole benefit of the sponsored project and are specifically budgeted and approved by the sponsor.
Travel Authorization Form – required for overnight stays.
A Travel Authorization form must be completed at least 20 days prior to travel. When completing the form, be liberal in the amounts requested to cover all estimated expenses. An addendum must be submitted if actual expenditures are more than the authorized amount.
If foreign travel is not included in budget at time of award, please review award terms to determine if sponsor requires prior approval.
Fly America Act
In accordance with the Fly America Act (49 U.S.C.
40118), international travel that is federally funded,
must be performed by a U.S. flag air carrier or under
a code-sharing arrangement with a U.S. flag air carrier
even if the cost of using a U.S. flag air carrier
is more expensive than using a foreign flag air carrier.
Code-sharing is an industry practice whereby an
airline puts its code on the flight of another airline
in order to coordinate services and to market the
flight as if it was their own. This practice complies
with the Fly American Act as long as the boarding
pass or ticket identifies the U.S. air carrier’s
designator code and flight number.
For example, if a Japanese airline carrier has
a code-sharing agreement with American Airlines,
the flight should be coded as AA#### for American
Airlines and the flight #### even though the flight
is on a foreign air carrier.
Exceptions to the Fly America Act:
Airline Open Skies Agreements – A
foreign flag air carrier may be used if the transportation
provided is under a bilateral or multilateral air
transportation agreement between the United States
and a foreign government, and which the Department
of Transportation has determined meets the requirements
of the Fly America Act. More information can be
found at the following link http://www.gsa.gov/portal/content/103191
Please note : Open Skies Agreements do not apply
to travel funded by the Department of Defense (DoD).
A matter of necessity- U.S flag
air carrier cannot provide the air transportation
needed, medical reasons, to avoid an unreasonable
risk to a traveler’s safety, traveler cannot
purchase a ticket in an authorized class of service
on a U.S. flag air carrier, but the authorized
class of service is available on a foreign air
No U.S. air carrier provides service
on a particular leg of your route - A
foreign air carrier can be used only to or from
the nearest interchange point to connect with
a U.S. flag air carrier.
Involuntary Rerouting – if
a U.S. flag air carrier involuntarily reroutes
the traveler via a foreign air carrier.
Shorten travel time – if
service on a foreign air carrier is three hours
or less and the use of a U.S flag air carrier doubles
en route travel time. If a foreign air carrier
would eliminate two or more aircraft changes en
route. If use of a U.S. flag air carrier on a nonstop
flight extends travel time by 24 hours or more.
Procurement cards cannot be assigned to a grant number, but it can be linked to your department number. If you purchase an item through your Department's Procurement Card, the charge can be reallocated to the grant before it is charged to your department number. Please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org stating the Cardholder's Name, Department Number and Account (Procard is linked to), the name of the vendor, the amount, the transaction date, and the grant number and account that the expense should be charged too. On the email cc: the PI/Cardholder (if not one in the same) and email@example.com.
An activity log must be maintained as each purchase
is made. Using the Pro-card Web for reconciliation
is the easiest way for cardholders to maintain their
The completed activity log and original
receipts should be kept on file for auditing purposes.
In the event of an audit, auditors may visit the
department to review original receipts. The department
may also send copies to Post-Award.
If the Pro-card is used to purchase computers, technological devices, or participant support costs, departments are required to send a copy of the receipt to Post-Award.
Gift Card Purchases
MUST HAVE PRIOR APPROVAL BY SUE BRODIE, Associate Director of Financial Services. Please follow this process:
"For approval of the purchase of gift cards, an email or memo must be sent to Sue Brodie firstname.lastname@example.org with the following information:
Who will purchase the gift cards.
The value of the gift card (and what store the gift card is to, if known).
Who will be receiving the gift card and why. Please note: Gift cards should NOT be given to any faculty or staff or student employee of Towson University. If a gift card is given to a TU student it should not be related to employment activity, but rather, (in our case -for research purposes) an incentive for attendance to a workshop or participation in a research study/event/survey. If the study doesn't ask for anonymity or confidentiality, a form can be included as back up that X person received the gift card. This documentation can either be included in the reimbursement request or supplied upon request (in the event that the gift cards are not distributed soon after purchase). In order to be reimbursed for this purchase, you must submit a Miscellaneous Expense Voucher with the original receipts.
Once that is sent to Ms. Brodie, she will review and either approve or deny the request. Failure to comply with this procedure will result in non-reimbursement of these gift card purchases."
GIFTCARDS MAY NOT BE PURCHASED WITH A PROCUREMENT CARD.
Invoices must be approved and signed by the Principal Investigator. If an invoice is mailed directly to the academic department, affix a Code Block Label to the invoice, sign, and forward to Post-Award for second signature.
When submitting an invoice for a catered affair (e.g. The Burkshire) a memo of explanation must be included along with a list of attendees and their affiliation. If a list is not attainable, please state this in your memo. If the event is a conference, attach the conference brochure.
Invoices should be returned to Accounts Payable within 5 days of receipt. This is a very short turn around period so please return signed invoices immediately. If there is a delay in returning the invoice in a timely manner, please note the reason for the delay on the invoice.
For purposes of this section, equipment is defined as tangible nonexpendable property having a useful life of more than one year and an acquisition cost of $5000 or more per unit.
Any equipment that is to be purchased, which has not been specifically included in the proposal budget, must have prior written approval from the sponsor. Requests for such equipment should be submitted to OSPR for negotiation with the funding agency.
Facilities & Administration Costs
Facilities and administration (F&A) costs also known as indirect costs are costs that are incurred for common or joint objectives and, therefore, cannot be identified readily and specifically with a particular sponsored project, an instructional activity, or any other institutional activity.
OMB Circular A-21 Definition of Facilities and Administration:
"Facilities" is defined as depreciation and use allowances, interest on debt associated with certain buildings, equipment and capital improvements, operation and maintenance expenses, and library expenses.
"Administration" is defined as general administration and general expenses, departmental administration, sponsored projects administration, and student administration and services.
An F&A rate is formally negotiated with the federal government for use on grants and contracts and other agreements with the Federal Government. Towson University's current F&A rate is 45% of modified total direct costs for on-campus projects and 25% of modified total direct costs for off-campus projects. Off-campus projects are defined as those to which rent is charged as a direct expense. The modified total direct cost base includes all direct costs other than equipment (single item of $5,000 or more with a useful life of more than one year) and subcontracts. These rates are valid through June 30, 2014 (at which time we will continue using the current rates until a new agreement is negotiated).
F&A cost recovery is distributed monthly as follows: