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This resource is being maintained for historical purposes only and is not currently applicable.

Important Information for the end of the 1999-2000 year processing for the Federal Pell Program

PublicationDate: 9/26/2000
Summary: Important Information for the end of the 1999-2000 year processing for the Federal Pell Program
Author: General Manager: SFA Student Channel

Posted on September 26, 2000

TO: All Destination Points
FROM: Pell Grant Processing
RE: Important Information for the end of the 1999-2000 year
processing for the Federal Pell Program

THIS MESSAGE: Reminds you of the processing deadline for the
1999-2000 Award Year for the Federal Pell Grant Program

Gives you information on submitting end of the year data

Post-deadline Editing - NEW EDIT CODE - 399

Describes problems with the 1999-2000 Pell Electronic Statement of Account (ESOA)

Announces the schedule for reducing Pell authorization levels
to your school’s total accepted disbursement amount


This is a reminder that the deadline for transmitting electronically or mailing RDE tapes for the processing of the Federal Pell Grant 1999-2000 Award Year is October 2, 2000. (Please note the annual deadline for the submission of Federal Pell Grant disbursement records is normally September 30. However, because this date falls on a weekend, it has been extended to the next business day, Monday, October 2). This deadline was previously announced in the Federal Register Notice dated July 30, 1999.

Important: Your transmission must be completed by Midnight (local time at your destination point) on October 2, 2000 to meet the deadline. All RDE tapes must be postmarked no later than October 2, 2000. No requests for new or increased disbursements will be accepted after this deadline unless the requests meet the requirements for post deadline adjustments as set out in 34 CFR 690.83 or an administrative relief request has been approved by the Department.


A letter regarding post-deadline processing and information on requesting administrative relief for the 1999-2000 Award Year in order to submit upward adjustments to awards after the October 2 deadline will be available shortly on the IFAP web page under the heading Dear (Partner) Colleague. Click on 2000 for date of publication and then 'P' for Pell letters. Please be sure to read this letter carefully because post-deadline procedures have changed for 1999-2000. There will be no paper submissions of post-deadline records allowed. You should continue to submit the approved student data through your normal reporting media (electronic or tape). However, schools that have been granted administrative relief will also be able to enter post-deadline records via the RFMS web site ( after October 2, 2000.

Please take action prior to October 2 to submit new or revised information that is the result of new or changed awards, changed verification statuses, or to unblock awards for students attending other schools, so that other schools may submit records at this time.

While there will be no effect on the ability for Institutions to drawdown funds September 28 and 29th, due to the closing out of the fiscal year (FY 2000) on September 30, 2000, the Grants Administration and Payment System (GAPS) will not be processing financial information from September 28 through October 2, 2000. RFMS will continue to process all batches submitted for both the 1999-2000 and 2000-2001 award years during this time and acknowledgements for the batches submitted will be returned to you in the normal processing time. Funding adjustments for both 1999-00 and 2000-01 award years, resulting from disbursement batches received during that time will not be processed until after October 2 when GAPS is again operational.

Be advised that for purposes of reconciliation RFMS offers two records that provide you information to help you in this process. The first is the Year to Date File that contains detail origination, disbursement, and summary information on all your students at a transaction level. This file can be requested using your regular software interface (EDExpress, Third Party Software or Mainframe systems) or via the Pell web site ( under the data request area. RFMS has also begun to produce a special reconciliation file (see Electronic Announcement dated 7/27/00 for details on this file). Schools may request a reconciliation file by e-mail (, or by calling the Pell Customer Service Hotline at 1-800-4PGRANT. Presently the turnaround time for a reconciliation file is approximately 5 business days.

In addition to these tools, you may want to look at the RFMS Web site( The POP Information page allows you to view the activities of other schools with respect to originations and disbursements for individual students.

As in prior years, schools may continue to submit disbursement decreases to the Federal Pell Grant Program/RFMS without applying for administrative relief.


Records for 1999-2000 received after October 2 will be edited to determine if the school has been granted Administrative Relief.
(A Dear Partner Letter will be posted to IFAP to explain how to obtain Administrative Relief.)

Note: If the institution has been informed through an MRR that a record has been unblocked by a previously blocking institution (that is, a "PU has been received on an MRR record), the institution will not have to request Administrative Relief for the disbursement record increase to be accepted.

- If an origination record is received for an increased annual award and no Administrative Relief has been granted, the new edit code 399 will be returned. Edit code 399 is -- Origination award increase received after end of processing year and institution has not been granted Administrative Relief.

- If an origination record is received for a decreased annual award, it will be processed, regardless of whether Administrative Relief has been granted to the institution.

- If a positive disbursement record is received and no administrative relief has been granted, edit code 417 (or 531 for special disbursement records) will be returned. Edit code 417 (and 531) is -Positive disbursement submitted after end of processing year and institution has not been granted Administrative Relief.

- If a negative disbursement record is received, it will be processed, regardless of whether Administrative Relief has been granted to the institution.


For 1999-2000, some schools have received Electronic Statements of Account (ESOA) which do not fully reflect their Pell Grant funding. This results when the Pell Recipient Financial Management System (RFMS) receives an acknowledgement from the Grant Administration and Payment System (GAPS) of its successful processing of an RFMS obligation but RFMS cannot find its matching record.

The lack of a match during acknowledgement processing means RFMS does not generate an ESOA for that transaction, and subsequent ESOA’s may not include the amount of the transaction in the Pell funding total. In addition, we have experienced a few instances where transactions have been processed twice.

You can determine if your ESOA is affected by comparing the data provided to you by GAPS and the data on your ESOA. From your ESOA, add together the “Current Pell Grant Obligation” in both Sections A and B. This should match your Pell Grant authorization (or obligation) in GAPS. You may visit the GAPS web site at, or if you need assistance you may call GAPS Customer Service at 1.888.336.8930. You may also call the Pell Grant Hotline at 1.800.4PGRANT (1.800.474.7268) or e-mail us at

When we resolve the issues related to 1999-2000 ESOA’s, we will publish an update. Please accept our apologies for this inconvenience. We will continue to make correction of incomplete ESOAs a priority.


As part of our routine funds control, we decrease Pell Grant authorizations to the level of the total payments accepted by RFMS for your students. For 1999-2000, your current authorization may include the Y2K-mitigation increase we processed last December.

In early October we will identify which institutions’ current authorization exceed their total accepted disbursements (payments to students). If by mid-October your current authorization still exceeds your total accepted disbursements, we will reduce your current authorization to the total accepted disbursement amount. You will then receive an Electronic Statement of Account, via TIVWAN message class PGAS00OP, which reflects this adjustment in Section A.

Please note, you are also required to submit negative disbursements for students that have received an edit 323 "Origination is 'Over Paid' and a negative disbursement is expected on their origination acknowledgement. This occurs when a new origination record for a lower amount is submitted and the amount already disbursed to the student exceeds the new award amount. You must submit a negative disbursement for the overpaid amount. RFMS will reduce these students' disbursements down to the originated amount.

If you are granted Administrative Relief, which will allow you to continue processing Pell positive disbursements and upward increases after the October 2, 2000 deadline, it will be possible for you to make additional adjustments. If you have been granted administrative relief you will be able to submit additional Disbursement records, which if accepted, will adjust your current authorization.

If you have any questions, please contact Pell Grant Customer Service at 1-800-4PGRANT (800-474-7268) or e-mail us at

Last Modified: 09/25/2000