Sponsored project budgets are often authorized one year at a time. When there exists an unexpended balance, Principal Investigators (PIs) and Departmental Administrators (DAs) generally wish to utilize the balance within the next year or budget period via the carryover mechanism.
Carryover allowances and policies differ from sponsor to sponsor and project to project and must be addressed on a case-by-case basis.
If a carryover is desired and the overarching award is continuing, and the terms and conditions of the award allow for unspent balances to be carried forward into subsequent budget periods, the PI and DA should contact their SPA Project Officer to ensure the appropriate amount is requested as a carryover and directed to the associated budget period or activity. The PI and DA should also communicate the carryover amount to their SPF Finance and Compliance Manager. Carryover may be automatically granted per the terms and conditions of the award, or may require prior approval from the sponsor. If the award requires prior approval, the SPA Project Officer will make the request on behalf of the University to the sponsor and inform the PI and DA of the outcome of the request.
For federal grants, since Columbia is a member of the Federal Demonstration Partnership (FDP), many projects are issued under the Streamlined Noncompeting Award Procedures (SNAP), which allow for automatic carryover on most types of grants. Note that certain types of awards (e.g., NIH center grants, cooperative agreements and training grants), and even some awards under SNAP, may have the automatic carryover privilege revoked, and still require prior approval.