Grant Proposal Budget Resources

The main purpose of creating a grant proposal is finding financial support. Therefore, it’s important to have a solid budget established while crafting your proposal. 

Budget Building Blocks

While building your budget, you’ll want to consider the following expenses:

  • Personnel: salary for current faculty or staff time as well as for new positions. Review the Grants Handbook (PDF) for guidance on salary, wages, and fringe benefits. 
  • Fringe benefits: an institution’s contribution to employees’ benefit packages
  • Travel: required travel for project
  • Equipment: details and justification for major purchases
  • Materials or supplies: consumable materials or office supplies
  • Consultants or contractual agreements: payments to individuals who are not WSU employees
  • Facilities and administrative costs: intangible expenses associated with administering a project, which follow the Colleges & Universities Rate Agreement (PDF)
  • Other: miscellaneous costs such as postage, phone, or copying costs

To read more about these expenses, check out Budget Building Blocks (PDF) and refer to the Grants Handbook for a table of allowable costs for federally funded projects.

Facilities & Administrative Costs

Facilities and Administration Costs (“indirect costs” or “overhead costs”) are costs acquired for common or joint objectives and are therefore not easily attributable to a single project, such as utilities, building maintenance, human resources, and library costs. 

WSU distributes the indirect costs received to:

  • 15% – Department of the Principal Investigator or Project Director
  • 10% – College of the Principal Investigator or Project Director
  • 15% – Library
  • 25% – Administration (Business Office)
  • 35% – Grants and Sponsored Projects

Indirect Cost Rates

The U.S. Office of Management and Budget has established procedures to determine indirect costs for institutions of higher education, known as the “federally negotiated rate.”

WSU’s federally negotiated rate applies when calculating budgets on proposals submitted to federal agencies when permitted by the agency as well as on proposals to non-federal agencies, if permitted.

On proposals to state, local, corporate, or private sponsors when the federal rate is not permitted or in effect, apply a rate of 10% of modified total direct costs such as: 

  • salaries, wages, and fringes
  • materials and supplies
  • services
  • travel
  • publication costs
  • the first $25,000 of each sub-award to other organizations

When the sponsor does not permit indirect costs or allows less than the designated rates, the Principal Investigator is responsible for providing documentation that states the policy with the Transmittal Process Form. Grants and Sponsored Projects must approve the non-standard rate on the Transmittal Process Form.

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