Okay, now that the FIRE Act is in it's third year, I feel this would be a good time to ask this question...How many of you (that read this forum/post anyway) have been audited after fully administering your FIRE act grant? What has been involved in the process? If you prefere to answer off-forum, feel free to Email me. I am just curious about this aspect of the grant. I am doing a pretty good job (at least i think so) of keeping all neccesary documentation and correspondeance, but don't know if an audit is automatic or just random. Thanks all and good luck!
We have not yet been audited, however we did recieve a call from the local FEMA represenative and said he would be visiting us in person to review and audit the grant(s) we have recieved. That phone call was around 6 months ago and haven't heard a thing yet.
There's two stages to this, maybe more. All we have had to do so far was enter a 6 month progress report (basically consisted of "truck ordered"). They also require a 12 month report ("truck delivered"). In addition, all awards over $300K require an on site audit by FEMA as required by another law in the Federal Register. They were supposed to come visit us in March along with Houston ($750K) and Beaumont ($500K+) but because of the war (I assume) they cancelled and haven't mentioned coming back yet.
A couple of weeks ago, I received a call from a FEMA representative. This person wanted to meet with me the next morning at a nearby fire department to review our grant paperwork. She said that she was in the area and was trying to review several local department's grant information.
She requested to review: copy of the bid package received from FEMA, price quotes from vendors, purchase orders, written by-laws of the department pertaining to purchases, and any methods we used to calculate how we paid our matching share.
Unfortunately, we weren't able to arrange for a member to attend her meeting with the other grant awardees. She said that it wasn't crucial for us to attend the meeting since it was such short notice, but that she would try to get back with us at a later date.
Now I'm thinking, we should be OK with most of what she requested to see. I have kept all the paperwork concerning the grant, (i.e. purchase orders, price quotes, e-mails from and to FEMA, etc.) but we did not pay our matching portion at each time a payment was made to a vendor.
I assumed, maybe incorrectly, that we would have to show that we ultimately paid our matching share when all is said and done by the end of the grant period. Which as it stands now, we must purchase about $8k in additional equipment in the next two weeks. This is due to the fact that we really worked the vendors over, and got a lot better deal when placing the equipment orders, than the deal they offered on their quotes. By the way, this additional equipment will continue with the original theme of the grant, ppe, RIT and water supply (i.e. fire hose, and related items).
Yes, I got the six month progress report filled out and the twelve month will be filled out in December (although I guess I nothing stops me from doing it by the end of the summer, when I will have administered all of the grant).