What's Negotiable when you're applying for US Government Assistance?

What's Negotiable when you're applying for US Government Assistance?:

Apr 25 2019 - 11:30am - Apr 25 2019 - 12:30pm


Language: English


Early - Mar 14 Regular - Apr 25
Non-Member $95 $95


In many NGO’s organizations that seek and obtain grants and cooperative agreements from the United States Government, the functions of applying for them and of managing them once they’re awarded are lodged in different organizational units. Simply put, the people who craft the project narratives or the implementation plans usually have a different skill set and knowledge base from those who handle the post-award financial administration and regulatory compliance. A frequent manifestation of that separation involves one-size-fits-all award agreements that reflect an awarding agency’s tendency to treat all applicants the same and that are not tailored to the needs and management capabilities of the recipient. These agreements may be readily accepted by those doing the applying who, after all, are engaged in trying to land the award. But they can generate burden and cost on the back end of the grants process for those involved in post-award administration.


Unfortunately, this all-to-frequent situation reflects the fact that an applicant may not know about or is reluctant to ask for the kinds of “differential accountability” mechanisms that are visible in the applicable federal rules to those who know where to look. But, by requesting negotiable terms and conditions that are permitted, an applicant demonstrates the kind of management savvy that can raise an awarding agency’s comfort level and trigger a rational up-front decision about which provisions are appropriate. And that can point the way to an award document that results in less labor intensive post-award grants administration for both grantee and grantor. This webinar will drill down on policies that apply to all USG awarding agencies and that can make that desirable outcome happen.


You’ll learn about:


  • Federal agency authority for “case-by-case” deviations;
  • Obtaining “advance understandings” for unique or special grant costs;
  • The concept of “expanded authorities”
  • Waivers of administrative and cost-related prior approvals;
  • Options for the nature and timing of matching and cost sharing;
  • Alternative methods for use of program income;
  • Understandings about federal “substantial involvement” in cooperative agreements;
  • Possible choices for disposition of grant-acquired property;
  • Adjustments of time for incurring costs, liquidating obligations and closing awards;
  • The regulatory citations and explanations needed to show that requested adjustments are permitted or even encouraged.
  • Practical tips about how to make the requests.

You may not get everything that you ask for but, if you don’t ask, you certainly won’t!



Robert M. LLoyd

Bob Lloyd has trained “a few thousand” NGO employees over more than 25 years of collaboration with Humentum and its predecessors. He is well-known to the community through the workshops and webinars that he has presented for the organization as well as through his technical support of our advocacy agenda and annual meetings. A respected authority on the policies and practices affecting award, administration and audit of federal grants and cooperative agreements, he has provided direct professional services to seventeen federal award making agencies including USAID and DHHS and to more than 75 individual member organizations.