NIH Operating Under a Continuing Resolution through March 27, 2013


As you know, the new fiscal year for government spending (FY 2013) began on October 1. In order to continue operations in the absence of a FY 2013 budget appropriation, President Obama signed a continuing resolution (CR) on September 28, 2012 that applies the terms of the fiscal year 2012 budget appropriations through March 27, 2013. A CR is a type of legislation enacted by Congress as a temporary funding measure. Passed when the new fiscal year is about to begin (or has begun), a CR provides funding for existing federal programs to continue in operation until the regular FY appropriations are enacted.

I wanted to go through with you how NIH will operate its extramural programs under the CR. You can see today’s NIH guide notice for additional details (NOT-OD-13-002). Until a final FY 2013 appropriation is made into law, we will be issuing non-competing research grant awards at 90% of the previous committed level indicated on the most recent Notice of Award for your grant. This is consistent with our practice during most CRs of late. The NIH institutes and centers (ICs) where you are funded will consider upward adjustments after the final appropriation is made. During this time period, it is critical that institutions monitor their expenditures carefully. Also, all legislative mandates that were in effect for FY 2012 remain in effect. This means the salary limitations that were established last year are still in place (NOT-OD-12-035).

As I described in an earlier post that explored the meaning of IC paylines, operating under a CR means that the final funding levels for the entire fiscal year are unknown. Therefore, ICs won’t be able to offer many details about their expected paylines. See our fiscal operations page for more on this.

I’ll be sure to keep you updated on budget matters as the year progresses.


  1. I am just wondering if this is across the board for all NIH awards, including career (K) and fellowship (F) awards?

    Thank you so much!

  2. How do we know if or when to resubmit a grant that was recently reviewed if we don’t even know what the payline is? I have a grant that was reviewed in June and scored just under the 2012 payline. How long can I wait to resubmit and keep the good score? What happens if I resubmit and get a worse score? Doesn’t make sense to me to resubmit the grant if I don’t even know what I am aiming for. This was a competing continuation and all the money runs out in April. Even if I resubmit in March I will have to lay everyone off and rehire if or when the grant gets funded.

    1. I am in a similar situation as ‘struggling2’ in that I received what would be a fundable score in HL on an A1 submission of a competing renewal. However, the ‘first down’ markers were moved to 6’th percentile for funding. Obviously we must wait for a 2013 NIH budget, however, how does one manage a project that is in suspended animation? The Program Officer is no help whatsoever simply stating that must wait and see what happens. I feel there should be more pro-active use of funds to maintain programs that are competing and would be funded- and should be with the new continuing resolution that passed congress for additional 3 months of Gov’t funding.

  3. We are applying Dec 5th for an NIH SBIR Phase 2. How does that money work with the budget issues and what is a normal award date and funding date if things proceed with Congress?

    1. You should talk with your program official. The NIH Office of Extramural Research (OER) posts the normal timing for review and award cycles toward the bottom of our standard due date page for your convenience.

  4. Am I correct that there was just a new continuing resolution passed? If so, how will it affect paylines, if at all?

  5. Bob,

    After reading your comment, I got my hopes up, but I can’t seem to find anything in the news about a new CR being passed, other than one that looks like it’s for military funding. Do you remember where you heard about it?

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