Monday, 30 October 2017

Personnel costs eligible despite unreliable timesheets

The EC has agreed to a recommendation from the European Ombudsman to accept personnel costs despite the absence of reliable time records for an FP7 project. External auditors pronounced that the Belgian organisation’s time recording system was entirely unreliable. Despite this, in the case of one deliverable, the alternative evidence of the drafting and multiple redrafts and occasional emails was judged by the auditors sufficient to justify the personnel time claimed. For a second deliverable, the description of dissemination activities carried out by the organisation was considered sufficient by the auditors to justify the hours claimed. The costs of a further six deliverables were considered inadequately justified.

The EC decided to disallow all personnel costs. The Ombudsman considered this disproportionate, suggesting that the EC should reimburse the costs related to the two deliverables where the alternative evidence for the number of hours had been accepted by the auditors. On 6th October, the Ombudsman reported that the EC has accepted this recommendation.

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