- Preparing a Budget
- Budget Justification
- Indirect Costs Waivers
- Budget Guidance by Sponsor
Preparing a Budget
1. Read the RFP Budgeting Section
- Check the total budget request allowed, look for any unallowable costs, cost share requirements or limitations on indirect costs.
- All costs must be reasonable, allowable, and allocable to the project proposed.
- Review SRS budget tips found here.
- Click here to download the SRS budget template.
- If you are uncertain how an expense should be classified, use the object lookup codes found here.
- AgriLife Research/Extension approval is required for Senior Personnel requesting time greater than 25% effort. This is total effort including effort applied as cost share.
- Minimum Graduate student salary rates are set by each department and can be different for Masters and Ph.D. level students. Check with SRS or your department for applicable rates.
3. Fringe benefits
- Fringe rates are posted for each fiscal year and can be seen here.
- The fringe calculation is a percentage of salary plus a monthly insurance premium, prorated according to effort on the project. Faculty and staff insurance and fringe rates are different than student rates. Wage or undergraduate student workers do not receive budgeted insurance benefits.
- Domestic travel should be separated from foreign travel. Read RFP to be sure foreign travel is allowed.
- Mileage costs are reimbursed for personal vehicle use and should be listed in travel.
- Use federal per diem rates for estimating travel costs for meals, lodging, and incidental expenses. Federal rates can be seen here.
- AgriLife fleet vehicle use is listed under Other Direct Costs.
5. Materials and Supplies
- General lab and chemical supplies.
- Fuel and other farm inputs.
- Computers or laptops.
6. Other Direct Costs
- Conference registration fees should be separated from travel and included in other direct costs.
- Tuition is required in proportion to the effort of budgeted graduate students if allowed by the sponsor.
- Services that will be paid to a third party should be included here, including facilities within A&M that bill for their services (examples: sequencing, greenhouse fees, growth chamber use fees, land rental).
- Consultants must provide a signed letter detailing their role, daily rate, and any other budget requests. Fill out this checklist to help.
- AgriLife vehicle fleet usage fees.
7. Participant Support
- Participant support costs are direct costs for items such as stipends or subsistence allowances, travel allowances, and registration fees paid to or on behalf of participants or trainees (but not employees) in connection with conferences, or training projects.
- Value of more than $5,000 and useful life of more than one year.
9. Indirect Costs
- On-campus indirect costs should be applied
- See Texas A&M Rate Agreement here.
- NOTE: This also applies to AgriLife Research and Extension Centers outside of College Station.
- A narrative budget justification is required by most sponsors. This is a chance to explain the budget request and reasoning in detail.
- Follow the sponsor format and organize the justification in the same order as the sponsor budget to make it easier for reviewers to read.
- Check the RFA for any page or font limits, or specific information that must be included.
- Do not make unnecessary cost share commitments.
- See resources page for budget justification samples.
- If any other institution will receive funds, they will be a subcontract on the budget. This includes other members of the TAMUS system that you may work with, in addition to other universities, government entities (like USDA or National Labs) or private entities.
- Additional information is needed to verify the costs for each subcontract.
- Subrecipient Commitment Form can be found here.
- Budget spreadsheet in required sponsor format
Indirect Costs Waivers
- In general, indirect cost waivers will not be approved.
- In the event you would like to submit an IDC Waiver, you will need to contact your SRS proposal administrator and provide a justification that includes necessity and benefit to the Texas A&M University System Member and the State of Texas.