Research Policy Analysis and Coordination
6-700 Financial Reporting Requirements
The Accounting Manual, Chapter A-000-4, "University Accounting Program", Section II, provides a brief statement of the goals and objectives of the financial accounting and reporting program, as follows:
The University, as a public institution, has a special stewardship obligation to process properly and accurately all receipts and disbursements of funds; to account for all financial resources received and used; to ensure that all financial transactions conform to legal requirements and administrative policies, and are recorded in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles for colleges and universities; and to provide reports which present to University administrators and the public a complete picture of the University's funds and their use.
The University accounting program records all financial transactions by account and fund numbers in order to control expenditures against established budgets and to prepare management reports. Among other duties, the campus Accounting Officers prepare "Departmental
information to assist managers in administering their funds by presenting budgets, expenditures, liens, and remaining balances." (See Accounting Manual, Chapter A-000-4, Section IV.C.)
Further policy regarding submission of financial reports to extramural sponsors who have provided advance payments is outlined in the Accounting Manual, Chapter C-557-21, "Contracts and Grants: Cash Advance Programs", Section VI. A., "Reporting Requirements," which states:
To avoid possible suspension of funding under an advance payment program, the requisite reports should be filed within the time frame specified by the granting agency.
This Accounting Manual Chapter also provides additional policy guidance concerning reporting requirements, such as recording expenses in the appropriate account in the month the expense is incurred, thereby allowing for accurate, current, and complete disclosure of financial results; substantiating cost transfers in a well-documented and timely manner; and conforming with internal control standards and adequate supporting documentation requirements.
The University must prepare various financial reports on contract and grant expenditures for internal management purposes and to meet external reporting requirements.
Sponsors have different budgeting and financial reporting requirements. Contracts and Grants Officers must coordinate with the appropriate campus Accounting Office officials whenever a sponsor requests financial data or documentation which is not routinely provided by the accounting system. The Accounting Manual, Chapter A-115-2, "Accounting Codes: General Ledger," outlines the account code structure and the cost categories which are routinely provided by the accounting system. Acceptance of funding agency restrictions or practices which are unreasonable or otherwise are deemed arbitrary which would result in paperwork burden or hardships for the University should be avoided.
The federal government has adopted certain standard financial reporting formats for use with federal grants under 2 CFR 215 (OMB Circular No. A-110), Section 215.52, "Financial Reporting." (See 6-F05.) Contracts and Grants Officers should insure that budgeting and reporting requirements accepted in federal agreements are consistent with these federal government-wide reporting requirements. See 17-400 and 17-410 for University policy on negotiating and responding to external reporting requirements and other paperwork requirements.