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Rules for Changing Salary Charges or Effort Commitments

The federal government defines a significant change in work activity as:

  • A 25 percent (or greater) reduction in the level of committed effort, or
  • An absence from the project of three months or more, or
  • A withdrawal from the project

The rules for changing salary charges and effort commitments depend on your project role and the nature and magnitude of the change.

For an investigator or key person:

If you want to: Then you must:
Reduce the salary charges without changing the effort commitment Document as cost sharing the effort for which the sponsor will not provide salary support
Reduce both the salary charges and the effort commitment by less than 25% of the original commitment level Document the change to the commitment level
Reduce both the salary charges and the effort commitment for a key person as listed in the NOGA by 25% or more of the original commitment level Obtain approval from the sponsor prior to the change and in writing, and document the change to the commitment level when approved
Reduce both the salary charges and the effort commitment for a key person listed in the proposal but not in the NOGA by 25% or more of the original commitment level Document the change to the commitment level

For a project staff member who is not an investigator or key person:

If you want to: Then you must:
Reduce the salary charges without changing the effort Document as cost sharing the effort for which the sponsor will not provide salary support
Reduce the salary charges and the effort by commensurate amounts No documentation, notification, or approval is required

In the tables above, "NOGA" stands for Notice of Grant Award.

For a significant change in work activity, documenting the change means communicating it to RSP after getting the sponsor's approval. For all other changes, documenting means maintaining a written or emailed record at the department level.