Telephone Costs

Basic Telephone Services

Basic telephone services include telephone installation, instrument purchase or rental, and line costs.

On Campus

Per GIM 23 "Sponsored Program Costing Policy", basic telephone services are an Indirect (F&A) cost.

These costs can be directly charged to a sponsored Award if unique circumstances exist, such as if an Award requires:

  • More than the normal level of services or items;
  • Unique or special equipment;
  • Separate telephone lines for data transmission, phone surveys; and/or
  • Technical expertise or items not otherwise needed by the department.

The following are required to direct charge basic telephone services to a sponsored award:

  • Costs can be specifically identified so they can be allocated directly to the Award; and
  • Written sponsor approval has been received via either:
    • Pre-Award: Inclusion of the itemized costs and justification in a fully-funded proposal; or
    • Post-Award: Specific written authorization from the Sponsor’s authorized official.

Costs directly charged to an Award are subject to the applicable F&A rate.

On-campus Awards with a reduced F&A rate (e.g., Training Grants with an 8% F&A Rate) are not considered to be an exception and used as justification for direct billing of basic telephone services to an Award.

Off Campus

As identified in GIM 23 "Sponsored Program Costing Policy", Basic Telephone Services are not included in the Off-Campus F&A rate. Thus, Basic Telephone Services can be directly charged to a Sponsored Award.

If more than one Award or department activity is befitting from the service, then costs must be allocated on a reasonable basis. The allocation methodology must be documented and followed consistently, and must take into account usage for Sponsored Awards and other department activities.

Applied Physics Lab (APL) and Regional Primate Center

Per GIM 23 "Sponsored Program Costing Policy", APL's and the Regional Primate Center's basic telephone services can be direct charged to sponsored Awards. Such costs do not require sponsor approval or other documentation to incur as direct costs.

Multiple Locations

If a single Award is conducted at both an on-campus location and an off-campus location, basic telephone services must be budgeted for each location in accordance with anticipated use per location. 

Long Distance or Per Usage Charges

Individual long distance or other per usage costs, if incurred, may be directly charged to an Award, as allocable, if the unique costs can be identified.  

Post Award Fiscal Compliance email:

For questions and issues relating to Effort Reporting, email:

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