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  • Question about the need for amendments to app.

    In looking at what we priced our AED when we submitted the app. we now find that we are going to be about $500-$800 short of what we were awarded. However we are looking to be much less on the price of our Turnout Gear.

    Do I need to request to move funds from the Turnout Gear to the AED or is it already allowed?

    Also, In talking to one of the salesmen we were told that we could spend up to 10% on things other than the Complete Sets of Turnout Gear we were awarded. ie. Flashlights, Spanners, Door Wedges, Gear bags. Is this true.

    My name is on this grant and I don't want any questions about defrauding the grant or spending money on things that are not approved.

    Looking for a little help from those who know. This is my first grant and I don't want to mess up.

  • #2
    Also, In talking to one of the salesmen we were told that we could spend up to 10% on things other than the Complete Sets of Turnout Gear we were awarded. ie. Flashlights, Spanners, Door Wedges, Gear bags. Is this true.
    No, not true. You can spend up to $5,000 of excess funds to further the project. Excess funds are what is left over when you buy what you applied for.

    Excess funds are calculated by finding the difference between what you proposed to spend against what you spent. It is easier to figure out what excess actually adds up to if you treat each line item as a separate 95/5 (or whatever your matching is).

    So for real numbers:

    You priced 40 sets of PPE at $2000/set ($80k). Your AED was $10,000, for a total project of $90k, $85,500k federal $4500 local.

    So for the above, you spent $68,400 federal and $3,600 local to buy the PPE. This leaves you with $17,100 in federal funds and $900 in local to spend on the project to remain within the proper percentages (95/5).

    The AED is $10,500. So since you have a leftover of $17,000 federal, you can spend up to $5K (still have to match 5% on what you spend). So you would be using $9,975 in fed funds (instead of the proposed $9,500) and $525 in local to meet the 95/5 matching. This leaves you with $7,125 in federal funds. But you can only spend $4,525 of that amount because you already spent $475 in 'excess funds' to add to the fed pot in buying the AED since you were originally approved to only spend $9,500 on the AED.

    So the remaining monies must go to FP or back to DC.

    - Brian
    Brian P. Vickers
    www.vickersconsultingservices.com
    Emergency Services Consulting
    Westlake VFD - Houston, TX
    Proud Member IACOJ - Redneck Division

    Comment


    • #3
      Oh, and if you didn't apply for flashlights, spanners or door wedges those would all count as purchases made with excess funds. So in the above you could only spend $4,525 buying that stuff despite having a total of $7,125 in fed funds left over. Anything over $4,525 would be out of pocket.
      Brian P. Vickers
      www.vickersconsultingservices.com
      Emergency Services Consulting
      Westlake VFD - Houston, TX
      Proud Member IACOJ - Redneck Division

      Comment


      • #4
        Brian,

        What you are stating is different from what I was told (it's in writing) in 2004. Basically, if you have items under budget and items over budget, you can make up the difference with extra funds before determining your excess funds.

        Ex. $82,000 grant (fed & local shares). PPE budgeted at $70,000 actual cost $72,000. SCBA cylinders budgeted $10,000 actual cost $4,000. This leaves funds of $6,000.

        According to AFG $2,000 could be used to make up for the overage on the PPE. Excess funds are now $4,000.

        Comment


        • #5
          I think they changed from then because that was the first year it was in place. Before that there was no limit. They could have changed it again, they never tell us, and I haven't had it come up yet this year.

          It's not detailed anywhere in the PG other than "$5000 in excess funds", but the way I went through it is the way I got it from a few FPSs in dealing with some better pricing with people over the past couple of years. If it's the way you say it then great, that's more money for the awardees to spend. Mine's the conservative version to avoid visits from dark suit and sunglass wearing folk.
          Brian P. Vickers
          www.vickersconsultingservices.com
          Emergency Services Consulting
          Westlake VFD - Houston, TX
          Proud Member IACOJ - Redneck Division

          Comment


          • #6
            I had originally sent an amendment to use excess funds (based on the PG) to make up the difference in turnout that came in over budget from the original quote. A phone call later (believe me I questioned him about a dozen times) that is how he told me to figure out excess funds. But as you say things do change.

            The goal is to CYA, so my suggestion is to send an amendment and see what they say.

            I guess I'll know at some point if right or wrong, still waiting for the final close out from AFG for 2004.

            Comment


            • #7
              I had an FPS tell it to me like onebugle described (for 2005 AFG funds) last Feb (2006) in the AFG road show. I asked her if we would be safer with an amendment, she said it wasn't necessary. So i asked her if i could e-mail the question to her and get the response so we had something for our files, to which she agreed. Good to err on the side of caution.

              earl

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              • #8
                Took the words out of my mouth Earl. Let the FPS (ie the person coming to do the audit) tell us how it is.

                I just do the conservative calcs to make sure we plan on erring on the safest side. Surprises are a bad thing.
                Brian P. Vickers
                www.vickersconsultingservices.com
                Emergency Services Consulting
                Westlake VFD - Houston, TX
                Proud Member IACOJ - Redneck Division

                Comment


                • #9
                  Well I think to stay safe I will just call FPS and ask what I want to know or shoot them an email. I don't want any visits either.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    For What Its Worth:

                    Our 2004 AFG grant specified several different pieces of PPE and other equipment. Some of the bids on the equipment came back lower than we budgeted for and others came back higher....in the end we ended up with excess federal funds.

                    I talked this situation over with our DHS-assigned AFG Grant Manager and his interpretation was exactly the same as BC79er's explanation: Any funding which is above and beyond the amount budgeted for in the grant that is used to pay for equipment specified in the grant must be subtracted from the $5K cap.

                    It is interesting to learn that others received a much different answer when inquiring about this issue. The moral of this post is that you are 100% right to ask your Grant Manager and be sure to get it in writing!

                    Comment

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