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Project Budget

This KnowledgeBase archive includes content and external links that were accurate and relevant as of September 30, 2019.

The project budget clearly delineates cost to be met by the funding source and those provided by other parties. It is a reflection of the essential components in the project narrative. The budget is used to support project activities with costs which are reasonable in relation to the project objectives. It also serves as an effective management plan to ensure proper and efficient project administration. Additionally, it provides evidence that administrative costs constitute a minimum proportion of the total project costs. The budget is an estimate.

Within a budget there are two types of costs - direct and indirect.
    •    Direct costs are those costs directly associated with the project.
    •    Indirect costs are overhead costs, such as general administration, accounting, payroll, administrative offices, research, plant operations etc.

The budget presents a picture about the project to others. Essential elements of a budget:
    •    It is consistent with the proposal narrative.
    •    Is detailed in all aspects.
    •    Projects costs that will be incurred at the time of project, if different from the time of proposal writing.
    •    Includes all items asked of the funding sources.
    •    Includes all items paid for by other sources.
    •    Details fringe benefit separate from salaries.
    •    Includes the cost for all consultants.
    •    Separately details all non-personnel costs.
    •    Includes indirect costs where appropriate.
    •    Is sufficient to perform the tasks described in the proposal narrative.

Each project proposal should include a budget narrative that explains the numbers included in the budget. Click on Sample Budget Narrative for an example.

The following is a list of suggest budget line items consistent with federal grants. They should be specifically be used when applying for a federal grant.
    1.    Personnel
    2.    Fringe benefits
    3.    Travel
    4.    Equipment
    5.    Supplies
    6.    Contractual
    7.    Construction
    8.    Other
    9.    Total Direct Charges (Sum of a-h)
    10.    Indirect Charges
    11.    Totals (sum of i-j)


Belinda Biscoe, Ph.D., College of Continuing Education, University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK and Dr. Wanda Reitz, Director Grant Writing Resource Department, Indianapolis Public Schools, Indianapolis, IN

The contents of this website were developed under a grant from the U.S. Department of Education and are intended for general reference purposes only. However, those contents do not necessarily represent the policy of the U.S. Department of Education or the Center, and you should not assume endorsement by the Federal Government. Some resources on this site require Adobe Acrobat Reader. This website archive includes content and external links that were accurate and relevant as of September 30, 2019.