Question: I know that federal regulations stipulate that for federally funded locally administered projects, there has to be someone in “responsible charge.” Our municipality has consultants serve our township planning and engineering departments … can they serve in that role?
Lloyd Jacobs: Thanks for your question; as per federal requirements, the person who serves in “responsible charge” must be a full-time employee of the LPA. This requirement applies even if consultants are serving township functions. For some towns that have very small staff, even mayors and business administrators can serve in this role, as long as they are a full-time township employee.
Question: We’re interested in applying for federal funding but want to determine which of project costs will be reimbursable. Are there any general guidelines we can use to determine what’s allowable?
Lloyd Jacobs: Projects are comprised of direct and indirect costs, all of which must be necessary, reasonable, and allocable for the project. Direct costs are things like project supplies and materials bought specifically for the project. Indirect costs are things that benefit more than one project or purpose, like those for accounting systems or general office equipment. In order to receive reimbursements of costs, LPAs must provide invoices of direct costs. To get indirect costs reimbursed, you must develop an approved Indirect Cost Allocation Plan, or ICAP, delineating how the costs are being disseminated. Federal funding is an excellent opportunity for local agencies to get funding for important projects, so don’t let questions of reimbursement prevent you from applying. The rules are written to protect the interest of the public, so make sure you keep your source documentation and provide evidence of your costs relating to the project.
Do you have a question for Lloyd? Email newjerseyLTAP@gmail.com for answers!
This newsletter is published biannually by the New Jersey Local Technical Assistance Program, Center for Advanced Infrastructure and Transportation, Rutgers University, using funds from the Federal Highway Administration and the New Jersey Department of Transportation. The opinions, findings, or recommendations expressed in this newsletter are those of the New Jersey Local Technical Assistance Program and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Federal Highway Administration nor the New Jersey Department of Transportation nor Rutgers University. Any product mentioned in this newsletter is for information purposes only and should not be considered a product endorsement.