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U.S. Geological Survey Manual

U.S. Geological Survey Instructional Memorandum

No: IM OA 2014-09

Issuance Date:  July 16, 2014

Expiration Date:  Retain Until Suspended

Subject:  Instructional Memorandum Series for the Hurricane Sandy Supplemental and Department of the Interior and Bureau Governance and Reporting Policy and Guidelines, Additional Project Funding

1.  Purpose. This Instructional Memorandum (IA) is an extension of the IMs AEI 2013-05, AEI 2014-02, and OA 2014-07 and establishes the policies and procedures which must be followed when utilizing this additional Disaster Relief Appropriations Act funding.

2.  Background. Public Law 113-2, Disaster Relief Appropriations Act, 2013, signed into law by the President on January 29, 2013, appropriated to the Department of the Interior (DOI), Departmental Operations account, $360 million for activities to restore and rebuild national parks, national wildlife refuges, and other Federal public assets; and to increase the resiliency and capacity of coastal habitat and infrastructure to withstand storms and reduce the amount of damage caused by such storms.

3.  Department of the Interior Governance and Project Approval Process.  The DOI established a Hurricane Sandy Working Group to develop the plan for spending the $360 million provided for mitigation activities in the Disaster Relief Appropriations Act (DRA).  Bureaus proposed projects to the Working Group for consideration.  The Secretary of the Interior will approve all DOI bureau projects included in the plan, with the input of bureau directors.  The funds provided for mitigation are no-year, but the Department has indicated that they expect funding to be obligated within 2 years of the date of award, and projects should be completely expended within 3 years.

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) submitted project proposals to the Department in two categories.  The USGS received $18.8 million in May 2013 in the first category, termed “Immediate Need” projects.  The second category of projects is termed “Mitigation and Resiliency,” and the USGS was awarded an additional $22.4 million in DRA funds supporting nine projects in October 2013.  On May 23, 2014, the Department funded an additional USGS project for $2 million.  Due to Departmental reporting requirements, the USGS is required to track the funding and costs by each project.  This financial reporting transparency will drive the tracking of these costs as outlined below.

A more stringent timeline applies to funds applied toward contracts, grants, or cooperative agreements.  For these actions, the Department requires funding to be awarded (obligated) within 2 years of project funding and expended within 3 years of project funding.  Additional time can be granted via a waiver request submitted to the DOI Office of Acquisition and Property Management.

A.  Recording and Tracking Costs in FBMS and BASIS+.  Outlined below are details for tracking the DRA funds in FBMS and in BASIS+.  This structure has been established to ensure that the detailed reporting requirements outlined by the Department can be met.

(1)  FBMS Allocation Organization and Cost Centers.  Supplemental funding will be distributed via the weekly allocation matrix.  Included in the matrix will be the name and project number of the funds being allocated so that detailed tracking can take place to determine which cost centers received funds within each project (see the BASIS+ Projects section below).  Program Coordinators or those responsible for allocating these funds shall use the allocation form located in Chapter 3.4 of the Financial Operating Procedures Handbook.  A separate allocation form shall be used for each project so that the initial allocations and changes of allocation can be tracked more efficiently.

(a)  Treasury Account Fund Symbol (TAFS).  Hurricane Sandy Supplemental funds will be appropriated to the USGS through a transfer of DOI Operations funds.  The TAFS for the USGS will be linked to this fund.

(i)  Departmental Operations, Office of the Secretary, Interior: 014X0102 - Entered in FBMS as: 1414X0102.008.

(ii)  New FBMS Fund Code: 13XG010200.

(2)  BASIS+ Projects, Tasks and Subtasks.  The Secretary of the Interior has approved this project for the USGS.  Attachment A provides a breakdown of the project along with the appropriate tasks which have been created by the Office of Accounting and Financial Management (OAFM).  The cost centers most likely to receive supplemental funding are also identified along with the tasks specific to these cost centers.  As more cost centers are allocated funds, additional tasks may be created by OAFM.  If new tasks are necessary, please contact the OAFM Science Support and Bureau Financial Operations Branch.  A list of contacts is available internally at:

(a)  Access to the projects will be given to appropriate Theme Leads.  Theme Leads are responsible for adding the appropriate Associate Project Chiefs and Task Leaders once they have been identified.  If a member of the USGS project team requires access to the project/task and does not have a BASIS+ account, he or she may submit a BASIS+ request form to gain access. The form can be found internally at:

(b)  Project Budgets.  Detailed budgets will be entered by the assigned Project Chief and must equal the amounts allocated via the allocation matrix each week.  Narratives must include specific project milestones identified in the USGS DRA Program Plan.  The Geospatial location/footprint must be entered to track spending. Refer to Kevin T. Gallagher’s email dated February 26, 2009, Subject: Release of BASIS+ Footprinter, posted on the intranet at:

(c)  BASIS+ Project Structure.  The BASIS+ project structure is outlined in the following table (as well as in Attachment A to this IM).  Please note that the start date for all projects is September 30, 2013.  This allows the Tasks and WBS’ to be created in FY13 in BASIS+.

DOI Project Number

BASIS+ Project Name

BASIS+ Project Number


Functional Area

ABC Code


Mapping, measuring, and predicting vulnerability from contaminant hazards due to storms along the Northeast Coastal zone





(d)  Establishment of WBS Elements.  Cost centers that receive DRA funds shall create appropriate project and common services WBS elements as needed.  Project WBS elements will be linked to the BASIS+ projects/tasks, fund code, functional area, and ABC code as outlined above and Attachment A to this IM.  Cost centers need to fund all DRA accounts in line with the funding that has been provided to them via the weekly allocation matrix.

As with all no-year funds, the DRA supplemental is being tracked by the source year of the appropriation (FY 2013).  Due to this requirement, all WBS elements established in FY 2014 must be created in BASIS+ with a fiscal year of 2013 and an account number which starts with GX13 since digits 3 and 4 of the WBS element have to match positions 1 and 2 of the fund.

In order to track the overhead funding that is broken out into separate COM accounts by BASIS+ and FBMS when project WBS elements are funded, a unique common services parent WBS element will have to be created for each DOI project for which a cost center receives funds.  Cost centers will establish these common services WBS elements following the scheme outlined below:

DOI Project Number

Common Services WBS Element Scheme

BASIS+ Project Number


Functional Area



Use Center Support Project



Note: FFFF is the four-digit fund center code.

4. Projects - Direct Charging of Expenditures and Obligations.

A.  Expenditure Transactions.  Cost centers authorized to receive DRA funding will record payments (expenditures) against the specific account assigned to that project.  If cost centers are processing expenditure adjustments into or out of DRA WBS elements, these adjustments shall be done by the specific transaction being moved.  Do not “lump” or consolidate transactions into one large document.  This will aid in reporting with any potential audits related to these funds.

B.  Requisition Preparation.  Cost centers involved with DRA projects will prepare their requisitions for processing.  You must include the words “Disaster Recovery Act Funds” on the header of the requisition and “DRA” in the line item short text field in FBMS.

C.  New and Modified Obligations.  New and modified obligations can be direct charged to the assigned project account.  If obligations are established using both DRA and non-DRA funds, both lines of accounting must be referenced in the purchase request and the award, including modifications to existing contract awards.

D.  Documentation.  As expenditures and obligations are made against DRA funds, cost centers will need to keep detailed records of all transactions to support potential audits of these funds. Supporting documentation may include details about salary-related costs and what was done to support the project, travel vouchers, details about why certain administrative costs were charged directly to the DRA project, copies of contracts obligated under these funds, and details about expenditure movements made within the DRA WBS elements.

5.  Administrative and Support Activities.  Administrative and support activities are defined as temporary, discrete, unique, and severable costs associated with management, oversight, and execution of DRA projects.  Two percent will be held in a program level account to cover costs associated with the overall management of the DRA supplemental at the program level.  This will cover communication and outreach material that supports all DRA projects as well as the Sandy Coordination team activities and support.  Cost centers are authorized to charge a maximum of 20 percent common services rate to DRA funds.  If a center’s normal rate is below this threshold, the standard rate should be utilized.  If this is insufficient to cover indirect administrative costs associated with the funding received within a specific fund center, direct charging is authorized within the DRA project account.  Direct costs are defined as costs that are non-severable from the project activity and include administrative and cost center management support.

A.  Administrative support includes DRA contract management; DRA travel arrangements; DRA account management such as account creation, funding transfers, expenditure adjustments, reconciliation, and tracking; and DRA human resources-related activities.

B.  Cost center management support includes DRA project and task management and meeting with cooperators to discuss DRA project activities and products.

C.  As cost centers create their project WBS element(s) fund source records, they should choose the “Reduced Rate Yes” radio button and input a common services rate no greater than 20 percent.  Cost centers must also identify the common services WBS element created for the DRA overhead funds.  It is important that the common services WBS element scheme above is followed to allow the Department to track all funds related to a specific DOI project number.

6.  Milestone Tracking.  Progress toward project completion will be tracked using quarterly milestones.  It is important to enter detailed products, completion status, and outcomes in the BASIS+ project/task structure so that milestone reporting can be facilitated centrally as much as possible.  Periodic progress data calls may be required.  Science Theme Leads shall work with the Project and Task Leads as necessary to collect the requested information.

/s/ Paul M. McEnrue                                                                                      July 16, 2014
_________________________________________________                      __________________
Paul M. McEnrue                                                                                                       Date
Acting Associate Director for Administration and Human Capital

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