Grant deadlines can be tricky.
You will find that you will read the guidelines for a grant several times, if not more! Keep an eye on the deadline date. This can be tricky. Check for the following:
a. The grant RFP says that the grant must be received by a particular time and date. Remember - all your work will be for nothing if it is not received on time. If 5:00 p.m. is the cutoff, then 5:01 p.m. is too late.
Don’t assume because you sent it via the post office that the funding agency will still accept it if it shows up a day late. Many agencies will tell you that if you send it via the postal service, you’ll have to have a postmark on your package that must be 5 working days (not including weekends) in advance of the deadline. Keep a receipt for your package that you can use to argue your case in the event the parcel does arrive late. You’ll need it.
The State does have a free courier service that runs between state agencies. Unfortunately, it can’t guarantee that a package will get into Columbia on time. In that situation, a date stamp doesn’t do a thing for you according to one of the state agencies with whom we dealt. Get behind on your project or run into last minute difficulties and you’ll find yourself dashing to Columbia with the package in hand. Don’t worry - you won’t be the first person to do it and you won’t be the last.
The University does have a regular commercial courier pickup on campus. Call the Warehouse to arrange a time early in the day. Normally, someone will be around to pick up your package by 2:00 p.m. in the afternoon. If you’re not going to be ready until later in the day, get your label with the proper account number on it and then drop it off yourself in town at the correct courier depot on your way home. Talk to your department to get one of the labels filled out and ready to go.
B. The grant RFP says the grant must be sent by a particular time and date. In this scenario, you feel like you’ve got a little bit more breathing room. In reality, you don’t. A lot of federal agencies seem to be encouraging people to use commercial courier services over the post office because of the security issues in place for handling postal packages. There can be significant delays for items travelling through the regular mail service due to the security precautions at the other end.