Finance and Administration
Guided by tight accounting and administration processes
The Connected Health and Wellness Project was supported by a five person team lead by Project Manager, Antoinette Wells. Although the Office ran mostly as a matrix model, in general, finance and administration (procurement, payroll, HR and IT) was the responsibility of Finance Manager, Colin Deschamps, supported by Khaing Khaing Lin, Project Coordinator and Administrative Assistants, Bann Al Soutani, followed by Nicole Pinto. Reporting to the Project Manager were the Finance staff as well as Communications Coordinator, Zemina Megjhi and Health Coach Training Coordinator, Gisele Bourgeois.
By design, the CHWP Project Manager had a dual reporting relationship to Dr. Will Gage, Associate Dean of Research and Innovation, Faculty of Health and Dr. Harvey Skinner, Dean of the Faculty of Health and Principal Investigator, CHWP.
Largest Single Research project ever funded at York
Complex projects like CHWP require very tight oversight and administration. Not only was York, as Project Recipient, responsible for ensuring rigorous compliance and accountability from its multiple partners, it was also required to adhere to its own corporate policies and procedures.
Despite these challenges, CHWP was well served by York`s corporate infrastructure: Legal, Research Accounting, Procurement, IT and the Office of the Vice-President, Research and Innovation. These services back-stopped project oversight and this lead to a virtually seamless system where few if any financial claims or other asks` of the Agency were denied.
Budget included in-kind contributions
The CHWP budget proposal was developed and submitted to FedDev in the Fall of 2011 with a value of $15.5 million. The proposal included projects from 6 not for profit (NFP) partners including York and McMaster Universities, Centennial, Seneca and George Brown Community Colleges, and the University Health Network (UHN).
A condition of the proposal required private partner ‘In Kind’ contributions at least equal to the value of the proposal. In addition there would be some limited In Kind contributions from the NFP’s. The final approved budget included the $15.5 million federal grant, plus private partner In Kind in excess of $19 million, and NFP In Kind of $4.5 million.
Included in the $15.5 million was a Contingency of $900,000 to be allocated to the NFP’s as needs arose. Over the course of the project, the full amount was reallocated in addition to underspending of some original budgets totalling $250,000. This $1,150,000 was distributed for 3 new but related initiatives at the Community Colleges and UHN, as well as funding Black Creek Community Health Centre as a new partner.