Wisconsin Humanities CARES
Guidelines for
Grant Administration

These guidelines provide information for project directors and fiscal agents administering Wisconsin Humanities Council CARES Act Relief Grants. Although sponsoring organizations will generally use their own established fiscal policies and procedures, all funds awarded by the WHC must be administered in keeping with these guidelines.

Project Budget

WHC funds may ordinarily be used to pay only such costs as are incurred or legally obligated during the grant project period. The project period begins with the award of the grant and ends on the date specified in the application. Grantees may submit a written request to extend the project period.

Matching Funds Not applicable to CARES GRANTS
WHC grants typically require matching funds that are equal to or greater than the amount requested. Matching funds may be cash or in-kind. They may include any known sources of grants or gifts, any in-kind contributions, and any sources of revenue such as admission fees. Examples of in-kind match include the dollar value of facilities, services, talents and time contributed to projects. However, CARES Grants do NOT have any match requirement.

To be eligible for WHC funding, expenses must be directly attributable to the implementation of the project and must be incurred within the project period of the grant.

CARES GRANT Eligible Expenses. The WHC will fund reasonable project-related expenses such as:

  • Staff salaries
    • As defined by the WHC, staff salaries are the usual and customary payment to an individual for work performed for the organization.
    • Episodic payments to employees for work provided to the organization on an irregular basis
  • Ongoing Operating expenses
    • Space lease or rental
    • Utilities for space leased or owned by organization
    • etc.
  • Supplies and Services
    • Office supplies
    • Accounting Services
    • Janitorial Services
    • etc.
  • Other Costs
    • Not applicable to categories listed above

CARES GRANT Ineligible Expenses. The WHC will not fund:

  • Equipment purchases over $4,999
  • Expenses related to fundraising
  • Expenses related to advocacy or lobbying members of Congress
  • Purchase of land or facilities, construction or renovation (this includes mortgage and interest payments on land or facilities)
  • Re-granting of WHC funds
  • Previously incurred debts or deficits before the official project period begins (including interest payments)
  • Endowments or capital projects
  • Project/programming expenses (Organizations interested in support for humanities projects, as opposed to operating expenses, must apply for a mini or major grant.)
  • Indirect charges as percentage of grant funds received from the WHC
Financial Payments, Requests, Reports, and Audits

Schedule of Payments and Reports
With the exception of state agencies, grantees are paid on an advance basis. The WHC may advance the lessor of $7,500 or three months anticipated cash expenditures. Further requests for payment may be submitted as often as needed. CARES Act Relief Grant awardees will be paid on an advance basis, and will not need to submit payment request forms or other documentation in order to receive awarded grant funds.

A grant award notice and materials will be sent to all successful applicants within ten business days of initial notification of grant award. A check, issued by UW-System Adminstration-which acts as the fiscal-administrative agent for the WHC, will be sent to grant recipients (other than state agencies) whose project period is three months or less. Grant recipients whose project period is more than three months will need to file a payment request form. (Only under special circumstances would a CARES Act Relief Grant awardee have a project period longer than three months.)

Final financial reports/payment requests must be submitted no more than 90 days after the end of the project period and must indicate the total WHC costs of the project. Any WHC funds which were released but not expended during the project period must be returned to the WHC with the final financial report.

Budget and Program Changes
All changes in the scope or the objectives of a grant project, the project director, or the duration of a project, as well as any addition of budget categories, must be requested and approved in writing by the WHC. Grant recipients do not need WHC permission to transfer funds among budget categories so long as the scope or objective of the grant project is not affected.

Records and Accounting
For ease of audit, all financial records related to your WHC grant project should be segregated from other projects and kept in a separate ledger account used exclusively for your WHC grant project. Grantees must keep accounting records and supporting documentation relating to grant project expenditures for a minimum of three years following the submission of the final financial report.

Suspension and Termination
The WHC may, at its discretion and at any time, terminate a grant with written notice after consultation with the organization awarded funding. Within 90 days of the date of the termination notice, the grantee must submit a financial report itemizing expenditures and obligations incurred prior to the date of termination, and remitting any WHC funds that were released to the grantee but not obligated or expended. No costs incurred after the date of termination will be allowed, unless specified in the letter of termination.

Other Terms and Conditions

OMB Uniform Guidance Compliance
Many WHC grants are awarded federal funds under a program that is identified as 45.129 in the Catalogue of Federal Domestic Assistance. Grantee organizations that receive federal funds must, therefore, certify that: (1) they have expended less than $750,000 in total federal funds during the fiscal year; or (2) they have expended $750,000 or more in federal funds and are in compliance with OMB Uniform Guidance 2 CFR Part 200 – Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards. Grantees will receive a compliance form from the WHC office at the close of each fiscal year.

DUNS Number
As WHC grant awards use federal funds from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), a Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number is required for all sponsoring organizations applying for funding from the WHC. The number is free and can be obtained by calling the DUNS Number toll-free request line at (866) 705-5711. You may also acquire a DUNS number from the DUNS Request Service website (http://fedgov.dnb.com/webform). Please note the online process may take approximately one business day. For a full explanation and instructions on acquiring a DUNS number, consult Obtaining a DUNS Number: A Guide for Federal Grant and Cooperative Agreement Applicants (https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-utl/duns_num_guide.pdf).

SAM.gov (System for Award Management)
SAM.gov registration is NOT mandatory for organizations that apply for WHC CARES grant funding. However, SAM.gov registration is encouraged.

For registration and information, please go to System for Award Management (www.sam.gov). You may also consult Quick Start Guide for New Grantee Registration (https://www.sam.gov/sam/transcript/Quick_Guide_for_Grants_Registrations.pdf). Please note that you will need your DUNS number and Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN) issued by the IRS in order to register with SAM.gov.

There is no charge for SAM.gov (or DUNS number) registration. Several third-party vendors, however, offer to register organizations for a fee, which can be relatively substantial. The WHC does not endorse these vendors or the use of their services for SAM.gov registration.

Please allow up to 12-15 business days after SAM.gov registration is completed before the registration is activated.

Ensuring appropriate use of WHC funds (Debared and Excluded Entities)
The applicant organization will ensure that any funds granted as a result of this proposal will not be expended on entities or persons who have been debared or otherwise excluded from receiving federal funds. (Please see the electronic Code of Federal Regulations Title 2 Part 200.331 at 2 CFR 200.331 for more information. Also, please see the U.S. GSA website at https://www.sam.gov/SAM/pages/public/index.jsf and search on exclusion records as necessary.)

Labor Standards for Professional Performers
WHC grantees are required to inform the WHC whenever professional and related or supporting professional personnel will be hired in conjunction with a WHC grant. WHC staff will then provide grantees with a form that they must file with the WHC to assure compliance with Labor Standards under Section 5(I) and Section 7(g) of the National Foundation on the Arts and the Humanities Act of 1965, as amended.

These requirements deal with the enforcement of minimum compensation standards for professional performers and related or supporting professionals and the assurance of enforced safety and health standards prescribed by the Department of Labor. Consult a WHC staff member if you have questions about these requirements.

No part of the money appropriated by any enactment of Congress shall, in the absence of express authorization by Congress, be used directly or indirectly to pay for any personal service, advertisement, telegram, telephone, letter, printed or written matter, or other device, intended or designated to influence in any manner a Member of Congress, to favor or oppose, by vote or otherwise, any legislation or appropriation; but this shall not prevent officers or employees of the United States or its departments or agencies from communicating to Members of Congress on the request of any Member or to Congress, through the proper official channels, requests for legislation or appropriations which they deem necessary for the efficient conduct of the public business (text of 18 U.S.C. 1913).

Project Income and Interest
Any grant project related income derived from any WHC funded project, will be used to cover other allowable costs of the project or will be used to support other projects in the humanities. Unless the WHC specifies in the grant award how income earned after the grant period and income earned from license fees and royalties from copyrights is to be used, the grantee organization may dispose of that income in any way it chooses.

Grantees may keep up to $500 of the interest earned per fiscal year on all advances of federal grant funds. Bank charges related to maintaining interest-bearing accounts may be paid from interest earned on those accounts. Interest in excess of these bank charges and the $500 retained by the grantee shall be reported on the financial report forms and remitted at least quarterly by check made payable to the WHC.

Rights to Data, Copyrights, and Patents
The federal government shall have unlimited rights to data first produced under a grant, as specified in the terms of the grant award agreement. A grantee may copyright any work that is subject to copyright and was developed or for which ownership was purchased under a grant contract. The WHC and NEH, however, reserve royalty-free, nonexclusive, and irrevocable license to: (a) reproduce, publish, or otherwise use the work; and (b) authorize others to reproduce, publish, or otherwise use the work. Grantees are subject to any applicable regulations governing patents and inventions.

No subcontract of agreement with another agency for the purpose of providing a portion or all of the project activity can be supported unless it has been clearly identified in the proposal budget or has been approved in writing by the WHC.

Tax ID Number
(This is often the Employer Identification Number or EIN). This number should be the Tax ID Number for the applicant organization that will be receiving any awarded WHC grant funds.

Unemployment Compensation
Grantees should check to determine whether or not they must comply with Unemployment Compensation Insurance requirements for persons receiving monetary compensation from a WHC grant. In most cases, resource people will be treated as independent contractors. Administrative personnel may, however, be considered employees of the grantees. See Wisconsin Statutes (1977-79 text) Section 108.02(3)(b) or write to Unemployment Compensation, 201 East Washington Avenue, Madison, Wisconsin 53702. See also State of Wisconsin Unemployment Insurance (http://dwd.wisconsin.gov/ui/).