Waiting To See Results of OMB, COFAR’s Grant Guidance Plans

August 26, 2014 | By Jerry Ashworth | Post a Comment

flying-shoes-1154952-mHave you ever experienced first-hand that old expression of “waiting for the other shoe to drop?” That’s essentially what the grants community is feeling right now. We’ve been told what to expect as far as the uniform grant guidance is concerned and what events will happen leading to its Dec. 26 effective date (which was the first shoe), now we’re waiting for some end results (i.e., the second shoe).

For example, we know that federal agencies have submitted their draft plans to OMB for implementing the uniform guidance into their regulations. Now were just waiting to actually see these final regulations are and how they may differ from the guidance. OMB is reviewing them now, assessing any potential agency deviations from the uniform guidance, and will release all agency regulations in a document as of the Dec. 26 implementation date.

OMB also has said it is working on the 2015 Compliance Supplement, realizing that it will have to contain compliance language for auditees and auditors following the OMB circulars and for those following the uniform guidance. It also is still evaluating procedures to streamline the 14 single audit compliance requirements. OMB plans to seek comments from audit organizations as it prepares to incorporate these streamlining procedures in the 2015 Compliance Supplement.

In other items of interest, OMB also is developing a second set of frequently asked questions on implementing the uniform grant guidance in response to stakeholder questions the Council on Financial Assistance Reform has received over the last several months. OMB and COFAR issued the first FAQ on the uniform guidance on the COFAR website in February. In addition, OMB and COFAR are planning another webcast this fall to address uniform guidance implementation issues, although a date has not been officially scheduled. Further, OMB is developing metrics to help determine the effectiveness of the uniform guidance, which it plans to unveil by the end of the year.

So as you can see, there’s a plan in place. Now we wait to see the some results, or to put it another way, for all these shoes that are up in the air to drop. I often go to the OMB and COFAR websites and hit the “refresh” button hoping to get some new information to pass on to subscribers. All I can say right now is “stay tuned.” OMB’s Gil Tran and Victoria Collin are scheduled to speak next week at the Federal Demonstration Partnership’s meeting here in Washington, D.C. We’re planning to attend, so we’ll let you know what they say.

What information would you like to know specifically about the uniform grant guidance? Let us know.



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