Tagged tuna graphic by Nancy Hulbirt, SOEST Illustration.

“The PI Corner:” Processes and Proposals

Funding process and Requests for Proposals (RFPs)

The PFRP receives its funding annually through federal congressional appropriation. The annual PFRP appropriation, less ongoing funding obligations, will determine whether there are sufficient funds to warrant posting a Request for Proposals (RFP).

  1. RFP is posted. Letters of Intent (LOI) to submit proposal are due to PFRP.
  2. PFRP Steering Committee reviews LOI and determines which LOI to request a full proposal.
  3. PFRP notifies all submittals of Steering Committee decision. Authors of selected LOI have approximately 4-6 weeks to submit full proposals.
  4. External reviews are conducted of full proposals. A separate review panel is convened to review all the external reviews. The review panel's report is submitted to the PFRP Steering Committee.
  5. PFRP Steering Committee makes final determination on which proposals to fund.
  6. Accepted proposals are revised and "fine-tuned"; then submitted through the UH system and regional NOAA offices for review and final approval.
  7. Project funds are awarded by NOAA and inputted into the UH accounting system. Project accounts are set up and project numbers assigned.
  8. Sub-contracts are required for funds awarded to non-UH/NMFS-HL recipients.

The entire process - from RFP announcement to funding of projects - takes approximately 6-8 months to complete. Subsequent funding for approved multi-year projects will be reviewed annually by the PFRP Steering Committee.

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Budget preparation for proposals

The following budget categories should be used for JIMAR-PFRP projects. Requirements are subject to change. Please contact PFRP when finalizing proposal budgets.

  1. Personnel: salaries and fringe benefits. Salary rates should be stated as monthly or annual, full or part-time (FTE or PT), in USD. The fringe benefit rate will vary depending on type of position, institution rates, and benefits selection. Salaries for U.S. federal employees are unallowable.
  2. Equipment: for equipment costing $5000 per unit. Price estimates and quotes should be submitted at this time.
  3. Travel: airfare (coach/economy rate only, most direct route), per diem and ground transportation. Travel costs cannot exceed the per diem Federal Allowable Rates (FAR) for each destination. A brief description of purpose of travel for each trip must also be included. Travel costs for U.S. federal employees are unallowable.
  4. Other costs: supplies, equipment costing less than $5000 per unit, publication costs, consultant services, research materials, computer software and components, etc. Please check with PFRP regarding unallowable costs (e.g., food, liquor, entertainment, lobbying expenses) and on the number of publication reprints PFRP needs for its mailing list.
  5. Indirect Cost Rate (ICR) is assessed of the Total Direct Costs (TDC) less equipment. While all PFRP projects are assessed an administrative ICR, the ICR varies depending on whether the applicants are based on campus and whether funding is awarded as a sub-contract. The ICR for UH applicants (on-campus) is 25% of TDC less equipment; the ICR for off-campus applicants (PIFSC, SWFSC) is 20.6% of TDC less equipment. For non-UH applicants, in addition to the ICR of your institution, the UH ICR should be calculated in at the end, as 20.6% of the first 25k of your proposal cost (i.e. $5150). All of the abovementioned ICRs are determined by the University of Hawaii and JIMAR is required to use these rates. Please contact Dodie Lau if you have further questions before final submission, lau@hawaii.edu

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Progress reports, presentations and publications

Annual progress reports are required by JIMAR and PFRP by July 1st (subject to change). A progress report template will be posted for PIs to follow. Progress reports should not be more than 3-6 pages in length. Projects with multi-year funding must submit the next year's budget with the progress report. All progress reports are posted as PDFs on project web pages.

PFRP has two annual PI meetings; one held at the University of Hawaii and a smaller meeting at the Lake Arrowhead Tuna Conference, California. Principal investigators are required to make project presentations at either of these venues.

For articles published in refereed journals PIs should ensure that enough reprints are printed for the PFRP mailing list. All publications should include the following acknowledgment:

“This project was funded [or partly funded] by Cooperative Agreement NA09OAR4320075 between the Joint Institute for Marine and Atmospheric Research (JIMAR) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). The views expressed herein are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of NOAA or any of its subdivisions.”


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