The Grants Administration (GRA) Office is responsible for the management and administration of grant programs awarded by STScI to the astronomical community in accordance with NASA, STScI, AURA, and federal requirements, policies, procedures and standard practices.
The STScI General Grant Provisions (GGP) provide the general rules and regulations applicable to all grants awarded by STScI.
All grant actions occur in STGMS, a web-based application that allows users direct access to grants information. These actions include, but are not limited to grant budget submissions and approvals; grant awards and amendments; no-cost extensions; financial and performance reports; transfer requests; etc.
STScI expects to electronically notify Program Admin PIs and their institutions of Cycle 25 program approved amounts during the week of October 30, 2017. Should the date change, we will post an updated message. In cases where program amounts are reduced, the Program Admin PI is responsible for notifying each Co-I of the amount to submit for their revised budget.
GO – Awards are issued within 30 days after the first successful observations.
AR – Awards are issued as quickly as possible (but not later than 30 days) after Admin PIs receive notification of the approved amount for their program.
All grants are awarded subject to the submission of any overdue reports and/or the submission of revised budgets as required.
In accordance with General Grant Provisions June 2016 Section 11, Pre-award costs are allowable. Please note that such costs are incurred at the grantee's own risk and STScI is under no obligation to reimburse such costs if for any reason the grantee does not receive an award, or an award is made for a lesser amount than the grantee anticipated.
HST is currently at peak scientific productivity and demand, and we expect this to continue until at least 2023, providing significant synergy with JWST. HST's $98.3M/year budget is roughly split into thirds: flight operations, science operations, and grants. Ongoing optimization of HST's flight and science operations have offset inflation in those areas, enabling a consistent level of funding for research grants at approximately $30M/year.
Of the grants awarded each HST cycle, the overall rate of expenditure is significantly slower than the scheduled release of funds allocated to those grants. The discrepancy between available funds and actual expenditures accounts for a large amount of unspent funds on the HST grants program.
To reduce the pool of unspent (but obligated) funds, future grant funding increments will become available based on invoicing instead of scheduling. The amount available upon award will be a percentage of the approved grant amount. When 90% of the current funding is invoiced and paid, the next incremental funding allotment will become automatically available. (View document for details).
The Space Telescope Grants Management System (STGMS) has been upgraded to release the allocations automatically so that there will be no disruption in STScI-funded research at grantee institutions. If needed, additional funding can be made available upon request, and generally within one business day.
These changes are necessary for the HST grants program to remain healthy and efficient. Thank you for your cooperation with this effort.