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Special General Memorandum 02-02

SGM No. 02-02
JUN 18, 2002
TO: Area Directors

FROM: Director

SUBJECT: Reimbursable Headquarters Sponsored, Administered, or Directed Activities, Initiatives, Workgroups, Councils, etc.

The purpose of this memorandum is to clarify the circumstances when the Indian Health Service (IHS) will reimburse Areas/Headquarters offices for expenses related to activities, initiatives, workgroups, councils, etc., that are sponsored, administered, or directed by Headquarters.

The IHS has a history of using national groups composed of persons who can best contribute to a desired outcome and/or to provide a representative perspective on a variety of program and administrative matters.  Over the past 10 years, the IHS has used the workgroup as a method to address specific program and administrative issues.

Some of these workgroups have received budgeted amounts to support expenses incurred in carrying out the workgroup charge, including the reimbursement of travel costs incurred by its members.  Other charges to work and task groups have not included a provision for cost reimbursement, leaving the workgroup members to obtain support from their respective organizational components, including the IHS, Tribal organization, or Urban Indian Health Program.  In other cases, special arrangements have been made where Headquarters reimbursed an Area(s) to provide representatives, facilitators, lead negotiators, etc., on a "case-by-case" basis.

In fiscal year (FY) 2003, all Headquarters offices - the Office of the Director, the Office of Management Support (OMS), and the Office of Public Health (OPH) will budget for the reimbursement of costs incurred by the Area offices in support of Headquarters activities and functions.  The procedures for reimbursement are as follows:

  1. Before costs are incurred by an Area office(s), a formal agreement, i.e., an Intra-Agency Agreement, letter agreement, or e-mail exchange, etc., must be in place, and signed by either the Director of Headquarters Operations, or the Director, OMS, or the Director, OPH, and the respective Area Director(s).
  2. Areas offices must request reimbursement from the appropriate Headquarters office that has agreed to reimburse costs incurred on behalf of Headquarters.
  3. Headquarters will reimburse for actual costs incurred. Requests for reimbursement must be supported by detailed cost reports or other documentation (travel orders, vouchers, etc.) required by the reimbursing office.
  4. The responsible Headquarters office must request an "e;Advice of Allowance" from the Division of Financial Management to be issued to the Area.  The request must include the amount to reimburse, the purpose, and the source of funding.
  5. When an individual Area office requests on-site assistance from Headquarters, a request for reimbursement should be made to the Area office by Headquarters.

If you have any questions about the implementation of this SGM, please contact the Director, Division of Financial Management, at (301) 443-1270.

/Michael H. Trujillo, M.D./
Michael H. Trujillo, M.D., M.P.H, M.S.
Assistant Surgeon General

Refer to:  OMS/MPSS