Stipend and Overall Budget
Responsible committees will recommend no more than the published maximum allowed for each grant or component of a grant. This amount may include equipment, travel, assistant salaries, and other requested items. If a summer stipend is allowed and requested, the gross amount of the stipend will be treated as salary subject to state and federal income tax, as well as social security tax and retirement deductions. Investigators need not request a stipend or may request less than the maximum amount of $3,850 per faculty member.
If stipends are included for two or more faculty members in a single proposal, it must be made clear how the expertise of each is essential to the completion of the project. A faculty member may participate in only one proposal for each of the SoTL and Faculty Research grant programs.
Stipend requests are also subject to UNC Charlotte Policy 101.15 and and UNC System Classification and Compensation policies and guidelines. If you have questions about your stipend limitations and policies, please speak with your department chair, departmental budget manager, or Human Resources.
Budget Documentation and Modification
Precise budget documentation should be included, especially for travel and equipment, such as actual quotes from specific vendors. If faculty from more than one department are involved, specify which department is the home department for budget purposes. In order to accommodate the budgetary fiscal year at UNC Charlotte, the budget cycle will be from January 15 to May 30.
The committee reserves the right to modify any budgetary requests that it considers unreasonable or unexplained and may reduce allocations to all funded proposals to accommodate the funding of a greater number of projects.
External consultant fees may be part of the budget, if justified. However, the committee will not recommend fees for external consulting expertise if that expertise is available at UNC Charlotte. Fees for normal peer consultations will not be paid to UNC Charlotte faculty.
Budgets may include resources allocated to UNC Charlotte faculty other than the proposers, but such allocations must be specifically justified and are subject to special scrutiny by the committee. Such allocations must be justified in terms of "specialized expertise." In each case, the UNC Charlotte faculty members who will provide the service must be identified and a statement of their ability and agreement to provide the service must be attached to the proposal, along with documentation of how the service will be provided and how it differs from the normal scope of peer consultation.
Student Help and Wages
The proposal may include requests for student help at a rate of pay appropriate for the field or discipline. Human Resources can provide guidance on current rates of pay for students. These rates may change from year to year. An investigator who proposes to pay a higher wage rate should justify this, as well as the amount of student time required, in the budget. Applicants are encouraged to provide an exact hourly rate for all student help.
When an investigator employs someone who is not currently enrolled at UNC Charlotte, including a recent graduate, that employment assignment is subject to policies relating to non-student temporary wage employment (PIM-8). Hourly pay rates are determined by the nature of the work performed and the experience of the candidate, based on the current North Carolina state grade and salary schedule. Non-student temporary wage employees are typically paid at the minimum of the grade level considered by Human Resources to best match the level of the duties performed. A rate above the minimum of the salary grade level may be approved providing the rate is justified, does not create salary inequity with other current employees doing similar work, and the candidate qualifies for the rate requested. Investigators needing assistance on estimating hourly rates for temporary employees should contact the Staff Employment Manager in the Human Resources Department.
Travel will be funded only when the successful completion of a project requires visits to libraries, archives, museums, laboratories, computer facilities, natural settings, government agencies, corporations, etc. The applicant must fully justify the necessity for travel and explain what materials or facilities will be used. Travel expenditures should be documented as completely as possible with price quotations from specific vendors. Airfares must be tourist class and every effort should be made to obtain the most economical rates. Mileage and subsistence expenses will normally be allowed up to the state guidelines for in-state and out-of-state travel. Requests for subsistence expenses in excess of these limits must be fully documented.
The committee will consider proposals which have been partially funded or have funding pending from other sources. However, the proposer must inform the committee of all awarded or pending funding.
The committee may approve the purchase of a piece of computer equipment if it is unavailable and the proposer adequately justifies its need. Any proposal to develop a computer software package must document that similar software is not already available in the public domain. For more information, contact Information and Technology Services at extension 75500. Proposals that offer matching funds for computer equipment from the applicant's home unit will be viewed more favorably than those without such offers.
If a summer stipend is requested, the researcher should state in the proposal that they will "teach not more than one term during the summer" or "have no more than two UNC Charlotte faculty development grants," but not both of the above, if their proposal is funded. In general, the proposer should ensure that enough time is set aside so that the proposed work may be completed. Following these stipulations encourages the most equitable distribution of limited funds.