Federal Grant Reform and GPC
GPC isn’t just for Grant Professional Certification, post-nominal letters I am proud to display. GPC is also the acronym for the Grants Policy Committee.
Grant Policy Committee
This GPC, a committee of the U.S. Chief Financial Officers Council, has responsibility for coordinating government-wide streamlining and simplification activities for federal grants and cooperative agreements. This GPC recommends financial assistance policies and practices to the Office of Management and Budget and coordinates related interagency activities. This GPC is moving us forward with federal grant reform.
The GPC’s improvement efforts gained significant momentum when the committee assumed responsibility for coordinating government-wide implementation of the Federal Financial Management Assistance Act. On November 20, 1999, the President signed Public Law 106-107 , to improve the effectiveness and performance of Federal grant programs, simplify grant application and reporting requirements, improve the delivery of services to the public, and facilitate greater coordination among those responsible for delivering such services.
On May 18, 2001, 26 Federal grantmaking agencies presented a plan to Congress to simplify the application and reporting procedures used in their grant programs. The plan cut across agencies, and is designed to reduce the differences that exist between programs of similar purpose. Each year the agencies report to OMB and the Congress on progress made to implement this plan. The agencies have worked together to provide a common electronic portal at Grants.gov for organizations to find and apply for grant programs.
The GPC continues its interagency coordination and its recommendations to OMB, serving the public interest in collaboration with other Federal-wide grants initiatives.
Their work hard work is going to keep Grant Professionals busy too.
New Guidance Published
On December 19, 2013 the Office of Management and Budget published new guidance that significantly reforms and strives to strengthen Federal grant-making to improve outcomes for citizens while reducing bureaucratic red-tape. The new guide streamlines eight Federal regulations into a single policy guide to:
- Eliminate duplicative and (often) conflicting guidance;
- Focus on performance over compliance for accountability;
- Encourage efficient use of IT and shared services;
- Provide consistent and transparent treatment of costs;
- Limits allowable costs to make the best use of resources;
- Sets standards for business processes using data definitions;
- Encourages non-Federal entities to have family-friendly policies;
- Strengthen oversight; and
- Targets audit requirements on risk of wast, fraud, and abuse.
The cross-agency Council on Financial Assistance Reform (COFAR) will spur the new guidance through work with stakeholders to facilitate implementation, evaluate effectiveness, and move grant reform forward. You can find the Uniform Guidance webinars from COFAR here and here and more here.
Do you think federal grants reform will impact Grant Professionals in 2014? How is your organization addressing grants reform?