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5.2 Glossary of Terms

A

Accrual Basis is the method of recording revenues in the period in which they are earned, regardless of when cash is received, and reporting expenses in the period when the charges are incurred, regardless of when payment is made.

Addendum Record is what the bank receives that explains what a payment is for and gives the detail necessary for accurate posting into the correct account.

Administrative Requirements are set forth at 2 C.F.R. Part 200.

Amusement/social event is an informal gathering which is not mandatory for all participants to attain the necessary information. An indicator of a social/amusement event is a cash bar.

Awarding agency is typically (depending on context) the Federal Government or the next highest authority, that is, the State agency administering the formula award or the Federal agency administering the discretionary award.

Awards typically mean grants or cooperative agreements for financial assistance that a non-Federal entity receives directly from a Federal agency, or indirectly via a pass-through entity.

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B

Blanket Request is a series of the same or similar pre-arranged events containing multiple delivery dates scheduled to take place within the same fiscal year.

Block/formula awards are awarded to the States to provide assistance to State and local units of government for programs in accordance with legislative requirements.

Break foods consist of cookies, sodas, and fruits or other snack items, and may be served at a training program, a meeting, or a conference.

Breaks are short pauses in an ongoing informational program at trainings, meetings, conferences, or retreats. Typically, an all-day event may include one break during a morning session and one break during an afternoon session.

Budget Period is the period for which a budget is approved for an award. The budget period may be equal to or shorter than the project period for an award, but cannot be longer than the project period.

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C

Cash Basis is the method of reporting revenues and expenses when cash is actually received or paid out.

Closeout is a process in which the awarding agency determines that all applicable administrative actions and all required work of the award have been completed by the recipient and the awarding agency.

Cognizant Federal Agency is generally the Federal agency that provides the most Federal financial assistance to the non-Federal entity. Cognizance for audits is assigned by OMB, and a list of agencies is available at the FAC website. See 2 C.F.R. § 200.18. Cognizant agency for audit is not always the same as the cognizant agency for indirect costs. For assignments of cognizant agencies for indirect cost see 2 C.F.R. § 200.19, which refers to the appropriate Appendices.

Conference is defined broadly, and includes meetings, retreats, seminars, symposia, or training activities. See 41 C.F.R. § 300-3.1; 2 C.F.R. § 200.432.

Consultant is an individual who provides professional advice or services.

Continental breakfast means a light breakfast that may include a selection of coffees, teas, juices, fruits, and assorted pastries, and is allowable provided several hours of substantive material directly follows the continental breakfast. Grant recipients are reminded that the least expensive of the available selections should be chosen.

Contract means a legal instrument by which a non- Federal entity purchases property or services needed to carry out the project or program under a Federal award. The term does not include a legal instrument, even if the non-Federal entity considers it a contract, when the substance of the transaction meets the definition of a Federal award or subaward. See 2 C.F.R. § 200.22.

Cooperative agreements are utilized when substantial involvement is anticipated between the awarding agency and the recipient during performance of the contemplated activity. See 2 C.F.R. § 200.24

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D

Direct Recipient is an individual and/or organization that receives Federal financial assistance directly from a Federal agency.

Discretionary awards are made to States, units of local government, or private organizations at the discretion of the awarding agency. Most discretionary awards are competitive in nature in that there are limited funds available and a large number of potential recipients.

Domestic travel includes travel within and between Canada and the United States and its territories and possessions.

Draw or Drawing Down refers to the payments made by the Federal Government to the grantee which deplete the total grant award amount. DOJ grantees draw down or receive payments of their grant funding through the active grant period.

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E

Equipment is tangible, nonexpendable personal property having a useful life of more than 1 year and an acquisition cost of $5,000 or more per unit. A recipient/subrecipient may use its own definition of equipment provided that such definition would at least include all equipment defined above.

Expenditure a charge made to a project or program for which a Federal award was received.

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F

Federal contractor is a person or entity that contracts with the Federal Government to provide supplies, services, or experimental, developmental, or research work. Entities may include commercial organizations, educational institutions, construction and architect-engineer companies, State and local governments, and nonprofit organizations. See Title 48 CFR § 31.103-105, § 31.107-108.

Federal employees are those persons employed in or under an agency of the United States Federal Government or the District of Columbia. See 5 U.S.C. 4101 (1994) [PDF – 35.9 Kb].

Federal grantee means a non-Federal entity that receives a Federal award directly from a Federal awarding agency to carry out an activity under a Federal program. The term recipient does not include subrecipients. See also 2 C.F.R. § 200.69 (Non-Federal entity). Typically, this is the component of a State, local, or Federally recognized Indian tribal government, educational institution, hospital, or a for-profit or nonprofit organization which is responsible for the performance or administration of all or some part of a Federal award.

Fixed Rate with Carry Forward Provision is similar to a predetermined rate in that a permanent rate is established for a specific future period (usually one fiscal year) based on an estimate of the costs for that period. However, fixed rates also require an adjustment to actual costs once actual costs have been determined. The difference between the estimated costs used to establish the fixed rate and the actual costs of the fiscal year covered by the rate is "carry forward" as an adjustment to the next rate negotiation.

Focus group means a gathering of Federal Government employees to discuss results and improvements of programs in the field. The focus group should follow a prepared agenda, be led by an expert in the subject matter, and serve to educate the Federal employees.

Food and/or beverages retain their common meanings. Food or beverages are considered in the context of formal meals and in the context of refreshments served at short, intermittent breaks during an activity. Beverages do not include alcoholic drinks.

Foreign travel includes any travel outside of Canada and the United States and its territories and possessions. For an organization located in a foreign country, this means travel outside that country.

Formal agenda provides a list of all activities that shall occur during the event, using an hour-by-hour timeline. It must specifically include the times during the event when food and beverages will be provided.

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G

Grants are a legal instrument of financial assistance used to transfer anything of value from the Federal awarding agency or pass through entity to the non-Federal entity to carry out a public purpose. See 2 C.F.R. § 200.51.

Grants Management System (GMS) is a web-based, data-driven computer application that provides support for the application, award, and management of grants at OJP. It consists of the following modules: Applications; Award Processing; Peer Review; Grant Adjustment Notice; Financial Reporting; Progress Reporting, Monitoring, and Closeouts.

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H

High risk is a determination made by the awarding agency of a recipient’s ability to administer Federal project funds based on issues such as a history of unsatisfactory performance; financial instability; inadequate financial management system; non-conformance to terms and conditions of previous awards; or is otherwise not responsible. Additional reporting requirements are imposed on high-risk recipients.

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I

Imprest Funds are fixed- or petty-cash funds in the form of currency or coin that have been advanced as funds held outside of the usual secure account. Agencies typically use imprest funds to reimburse employees for expenses, to make small purchases, to make emergency beneficiary payments, and to pay informants, among other uses.

Incidental means (in the conference context) relating to a formal event where full participation by participants mandates the provision of food and beverages.

Interagency agreements and purchase of service arrangements are usually entered into by two governmental units or agencies. Such funding arrangements are negotiated by the entities involved.

Internal Controls means a process, implemented by a non-Federal entity, designed to provide reasonable assurance regarding the achievement of objectives in the following categories:

  1. (a) Effectiveness and efficiency of operations;
  2. (b) Reliability of reporting for internal and external use; and
  3. (c) Compliance with applicable laws and regulations.

See 2 C.F.R. § 200.61.

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L

Liquidation period provides awardees time to receive ordered goods or services, and make final payments on trailing costs. It is usually a 90 day period after award end date.

Lobbying is generally considered to be the act of trying to influence legislation. An organization will be regarded as attempting to influence legislation if it contacts, or urges the public to contact, members or employees of a legislative body for the purpose of proposing, supporting, or opposing legislation, or if the organization advocates the adoption or rejection of legislation. See 2 C.F.R. § 200.61.

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M

Match is the recipient share of the project costs. Match may either be “in-kind” or “cash.” In-kind match includes the value of donated services. Cash match includes actual cash spent by the recipient and must have a cost relationship to the Federal award that is being matched. (Example: Match on administrative costs should be other administrative costs, not other matching on program costs).

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N

Nonexpendable personal property (i.e., equipment) includes tangible personal property (including information technology systems) having a useful life of more than 1 year and an acquisition cost of $5,000 or more per unit. A recipient may use its own definition of nonexpendable personal property provided that the definition would at least include all tangible personal property as defined below. See 2 C.F.R. § 200.33.

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O

Obligation means orders placed for property and services, contracts and subawards made, and similar transactions during a given period that require payment by the non-Federal entity during the same or a future period (i.e., a legal liability to pay under a grant, subgrant, and/or contract determinable sums for services or goods incurred during the grant period). See 2 C.F.R. § 200.71.

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P

Pass-through Entity means a non-Federal entity that provides a subaward to a subrecipient to carry out part of a Federal program.

Personal property means property of any kind except real property. It may be tangible (having physical existence) or intangible (having no physical existence, such as patents, inventions, and copyrights). See 2 C.F.R § 200.71

Preagreement costs are defined as those costs which are considered necessary to the project but occur prior to the starting date of the award period.

Prior approval means written approval by the authorized official (the next highest authority except for sole source evidencing consent prior to a budgetary or programmatic change in the award).

Program income is gross income earned by the non- Federal entity that is directly generated by a supported activity or earned as a result of the Federal award during the period of performance. See 2 C.F.R. § 200.80. Program income includes but is not limited to income from fees for services performed, the use or rental or real or personal property acquired under Federal awards, the sale of commodities or items fabricated under a Federal award, license fees and royalties on patents and copyrights, and principal and interest on loans made with Federal award funds. Interest earned on advances of Federal funds is not program income. Except as otherwise provided in Federal statutes, regulations, or the terms and conditions of the Federal award, program income does not include rebates, credits, discounts, and interest earned on any of them .

Project Period is the period for which implementation of a project is authorized. The project period may be equal to or longer than the budget period for an award, but cannot be shorter than the budget period.

Purchase of evidence (P/E) is the purchase of evidence and/or contraband, such as narcotics and dangerous drugs, firearms, stolen property, counterfeit tax stamps, and so forth, required to determine the existence of a crime or to establish the identity of a participant in a crime.

Purchase of services (P/S) includes travel or transportation of a non-Federal officer or an informant; the lease of an apartment, business front, luxury-type automobiles, aircraft or boat, or similar effects to create or establish the appearance of affluence; and/or meals, beverages, entertainment, and similar expenses (including buy money and flash rolls, etc.) for undercover purposes, within reasonable limits.

Purchase of specific information (P/I) includes the payment of monies to an informant for specific information. All other informant expenses would be classified under P/S and charged accordingly.

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R

Real property means land, land improvements, structures, and appurtenances thereto, excluding movable machinery and equipment.

Reasonable means those costs that a prudent person would have incurred under the circumstances prevailing at the time the decision to incur the cost was made.

Reception means an informal gathering which is not mandatory for all event participants to obtain necessary information. Indicators of a reception include a cash bar, inadequate seating for the entire group, food items from a reception menu (such as finger foods), and a longer break (than utilized throughout the day) between the substantive meetings and the reception. Receptions are expressly prohibited and are considered to be an unallowable cost with Federal funds.

Recipient means the recipient of federal funding from DOJ, unless context indicates otherwise.

Regional Information Sharing Systems (RISS) is a national program of regionally oriented services designed to facilitate the coordination and communication capabilities of local, state, federal, and tribal criminal justice agencies.

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S

Separation of Duties is a key internal control concept that establishes procedures for certain types of financial transactions where no one person is able to execute the entire procedure alone. The most commonly used example concerns initiating a payment (writing the check) and authorizing a payment (signing the check).

Social event is any event with alcoholic beverages served, available, or present.

Special Conditions are contractual terms and conditions that are included with the award. Examples of special conditions include additional reports, audits, conferences, and disposition of program income.

Stipend is an allowance to defray expenses. Examples of these expenses include, but are not limited to, rent, utilities, travel, incidentals, etc.

Subaward means an award provided by a pass- through entity to a subrecipient for the subrecipient to carry out part of a Federal award received by the pass-through entity. It does not include payments to a contractor or payments to an individual that is a beneficiary of a Federal program. A subaward may be provided through any form of legal agreement, including an agreement that the pass-through entity considers a contract.

Subrecipient means a non-Federal entity that receives a subaward from a pass-through entity to carry out part of a Federal program; but does not include an individual that is a beneficiary of such program. A subrecipient may also be a recipient of other Federal awards directly from a Federal awarding agency.

Supplanting is to deliberately reduce State or local funds because of the existence of Federal funds. For example, when State funds are appropriated for a stated purpose and Federal funds are awarded for that same purpose, the State replaces its State funds with Federal funds, thereby reducing the total amount available for the stated purpose.

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U

Unallowable costs are costs the government is unwilling to pay as a direct charge or through an indirect cost pool applied to the federal grant or contract. An organization is not prohibited from incurring unallowable costs but they cannot be recovered either directly or indirectly under federal grants or contracts.

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W

Working dinner means a formal and mandatory dinner necessary for all participants to have full participation in the conference or event. A working dinner must include a formal agenda including a program or speakers that will impart necessary information important for full understanding of the subject matter of the conference. There should be several hours of informative sessions providing substantive information scheduled both before and after a working dinner. Indicators of a working dinner include seating for all participants. A cash bar is expressly prohibited.

Working lunch is a formal and mandatory lunch necessary for all participants to have full participation in the conference or event. A working lunch must include a formal agenda including a program or speakers that will impart necessary information important for full understanding of the subject matter of the conference. There should be several hours of informative sessions providing substantive information scheduled both before and after a working lunch (exhibits are not included). Indicators of a working lunch include seating for all participants. A cash bar is expressly prohibited.

Work-related event is a conference or meeting involving a topical matter of interest within the purview of the agency’s mission and function.

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