Contract Management & Compliance

Public Law 93-638 Contract and Self-Governance Compact Development

Assisting tribal nations assume direct operation and control of federal programs through Self-Determination Contracts and Self-Governance Compacts under Public Law 93-638, Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act.  Services include program development, staffing plans, budget development, preparing contract and compact applications, and Annual Funding Agreements (AFAs); assistance in contract and compact negotiations; and program implementation.  Assistance includes training for tribal staff on the fundamentals of Self-Determination Contracts and Self-Governance Compacts to educate them on the sovereign rights acknowledged by the Indian Self-Determination Act.  KIVA provides services related to the Indian Self-Determination Act as follows:

Ensuring Full Indirect Cost Funding

Assisting tribes evaluate tribal cost allocation plans, indirect cost rate agreements, and assessing the tribe’s recovery of contract support costs to determine and identify funding shortfalls; and reporting such shortfalls to the Bureau of Indian Affairs and Indian Health Service.  This service also involves assisting the tribes prepare and negotiate Indirect Cost Rate Proposals.  Services include a review of contract budgets and Annual Funding Agreements to ensure tribes are receiving full funding of direct funds, contract support costs, start-up funds, and direct contract support costs, as required under the Indian Self-Determination Act; and in light of the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Ramah v. Salazar.

Assisting Sanctioned and “High Risk” Tribes

Tribes often experience difficulties in completing annual audits, negotiating annual indirect cost rate agreements, or other contract/grant compliance requirements. Continued non-compliance usually results in tribes being designated as “High Risk” by federal awarding agencies.  KIVA provides services to these tribes to help resolve delinquent annual audits, addressing audit findings and disallowed costs; improving internal management and program management capacity; and helping to prepare and negotiate indirect cost rate agreements.  Assistance includes addressing tribal management systems, accounting systems and meeting reporting requirements.  Services are provided with the goal of removing “High Risk” designations and sanctions imposed by federal funding agencies; and building tribal capacity by instituting long term administrative and contract compliance reforms.

Self-Determination Contract and Compact Declination Issues

KIVA provides mediation services in addressing contract and compact declination issues, including serving as the Secretary’s Designated Representative at Informal Conferences. Services include conducting required research and analysis; and issuing the Recommended Decision within the prescribed regulatory time frames.  KIVA also serves as a tribe’s Third Party Technical Assistance Provider providing assisting tribes assert their rights, including serving as the tribe’s representative during declination hearings.  Assistance includes assisting tribes and federal funding agencies address declination issues and making improvements to overcome the declination issues; and helping build tribal capacity by instituting long term administrative and contract compliance reforms.

Alternative Dispute Resolution

Assisting tribal nations and federal agencies resolve contract disputes including, but not limited to, resolving disallowed costs. The Indian Self-Determination Act provides for Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) processes but tribal nations rarely use this entitlement in settling contract disputes.  KIVA, with its special expertise in the Indian Self-Determination Act, successfully assisted tribes and tribal organizations resolve millions of disallowed costs to the satisfaction of both parties; and realizing considerable cost savings to tribal nations and federal funding agencies. This process includes detailed analyses of program expenditures and determining the proper or improper expenditure of funds, and making recommendations for resolution and agreement.  An end result is often removal of sanctions and “high risk” designation and reinstatement or reduction in the amount of disallowed costs.

Audit Preparation and Follow Up; and Indirect Cost Rate Proposals

Some tribal nations have difficulty in completing annual audits and indirect cost rate proposals causing contract and grant compliance issues; and which may result in sanctions imposed by federal funding agencies. Services include helping prepare for annual audits, including preparation of closing entries and drafting financial statements.  KIVA can address audit findings and disallowed costs and assist with implementation of corrective action pans. A second component involves compiling financial data needed to prepare and negotiate indirect cost rate proposals while teaching the fundamentals of how to book indirect expenses and recover administrative overhead costs.  KIVA, with its expertise, teaches and assists tribes take full advantage of BIA’s and IHS’ contract support cost policies including Direct Contract Support Costs.

Strengthening and Improving Tribal Management Systems

Assisting tribal nations and organizations to strength and improve management systems and policies including financial management, property management, procurement management, personnel management, and record keeping systems.  A prerequisite to receiving federal funding is for tribal nations and tribal organizations to have in place the required management systems that comply with appropriate Office of Management and Budget (OMB) circulars.  Services include reviewing existing management policies and procedures and providing updates to strengthen and improve systems; and to provide training on such systems and policies to ensure tribal officials, managers and employees understand the systems and policies.

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