Knight News Challenge

Sample Grant Agreement




Grant number:

Approval date:

Grant Amount: 



Grant Activities: 

By September 2012:
By December 2012:
By June 2013:

All instructional guides, case studies and toolkits will be licensed with a Creative Commons license. All software developed under the grant will be open source and released free on the schedule listed above under a GPL license. Grantee will blog about the grant and its issues twice a month on the PBS MediaShift Idea Lab blog at

Anticipated Outcomes:


Communications: To announce this grant to the public, please follow our communications guidelines at  In particular, clear with  any relevant content that mentions the foundation.   Please also follow us on Twitter at @knightfdn.


1. Changes to any specific line item in the enclosed budget greater than 5% should be approved in writing by Knight Foundation prior to making the change.

2. The Grantee will use the funds for the purposes approved by the Foundation described in this Agreement and understand that any alternative use of funds must be authorized in advance in writing by Knight Foundation.

3. Any significant changes in project and/or organizational leadership should be reported to Knight Foundation within 30 days of the change.

Reports and payments:

1. The first payment of $X will be mailed within 60 days of Knight Foundation receiving this signed grant agreement. 

2. A progress report is due…  The payment of $X will be released within 60 days of receiving a satisfactory progress report.

3. A final report is due…

4. These reports shall include both financial and program information in formats that the Foundation requires. They shall include a narrative account of what was accomplished by the grant, including a description of progress made toward achieving the goals of the grant and assurance that the activities under the grant have been conducted in conformity with the terms of the grant.

The narrative and financial report forms are enclosed with this agreement.  Please contact Grants Administration at to obtain electronic versions of these documents.  The forms are also available on Knight Foundation’s website:

5. All completed reports should be sent to Grants Administration at, please cc Jose Zamora. 

By mail: 

John S. and James L. Knight Foundation
Southeast Financial Center, Suite 3300
200 South Biscayne Blvd.
Miami, FL  33131-2349

6. Organizations that complete internal audits by an independent auditing firm should submit a copy of the audit results within 90 days of completion of the report during the time period listed in the terms above.

7. Grantee also shall provide the Foundation, upon request, with all information relating to the results, findings or methods, and/or publications developed under the grant. The Foundation may withhold any future payments of the grant if it has not received all reports required to be submitted by Grantee and it such reports do not meet the Foundation's reporting requirements. Any reports may be disseminated by the Foundation without the prior written consent of the Grantee.

[This section varies depending on the type of grant and recipient organization]

Intellectual Property: Grantee and the Foundation agree that all copyright and other interests in materials produced as a result of this grant shall be owned by the Grantee organization. To ensure the widest possible distribution of such materials and ensure that they remain generally available to the public, the Grantee organization shall, and shall cause any individuals who may have some interest to grant, and hereby grants to the Foundation a non-exclusive, transferable, perpetual, irrevocable, royalty-free, paid-up, worldwide license to use or publish the materials or other work products arising out of or resulting from Grantee's use of the grant funds and any earnings thereon, including all intellectual property rights, and to sublicense to third parties the rights described here. Grantee, at Foundation's request, agrees to execute any additional documents required to effect such license. Promptly upon completion thereof, Grantee shall make available any software produced as a result of this grant on a public internet server under the terms of the GNU General Public License (version 2 or 3, at Grantee’s option), or with Foundation’s prior written consent, another open source software license approved by the Open Source Initiative. Promptly upon completion thereof, Grantee shall make available any non-software materials produced as a result of this grant on a publicly available open source repository under the terms of the Creative Commons “Attribution-Sharealike” license, or with Foundation’s prior written consent, another Creative Commons license. Grantee shall not make available such software or materials, or any derivative works of those materials, under any other licensing terms, without Foundation’s prior written consent.

Tax-Exempt Status:      Grantee will keep its tax-exempt status as a recognized Section 501(c)(3) and Section 509(a) organization current throughout the period of this grant and will comply with all applicable federal and state laws and regulations that govern the use of funds from private foundations to the Grantee organization.  This includes but is not limited to the prohibition

against activities described in Section 4945(d) of the IRS Code and limiting the use of the grant funds to the appropriate taxable purposes as described in IRS Code section 170(c)(2)(b).

Books and Records: Grantee shall maintain an accurate record of the grant received and all expenses incurred under this grant, and retain such books and records for at least four years after completion of the use of this grant. Furthermore, at the request of the Foundation, Grantee shall permit reasonable access to its files, records and personnel by the Foundation (or its designated representatives) for the purpose of making financial audits, evaluations or verifications, program evaluations, or other verifications concerning this grant as the Foundation deems necessary. The fees and expenses of such designated representative, solely at the request of the Foundation, shall be paid by Knight Foundation.

Management and Investment of Grant Funds, Earnings and Appreciation: Grantee shall invest and reinvest any funds disbursed under the grant that are not expended for the purposes of this grant including all earnings and appreciation thereof, in one or more specially designated accounts in a bank which is a member of the FDIC or investment firm which is a member of the SIPC in accordance with Grantee’s governing documents and investment policies which do not conflict with this Agreement, with the laws of the State of Florida, and with Federal laws. Each account holding funds provided under the grant, and all realized earnings thereon, shall be fully insured by the FDIC to the extent permitted by law, if the funds are deposited in a bank, or by the SIPC, if the funds are invested with an investment firm. Grantee may not assess an administrative or financial management fee of any kind, or charge expenses of any kind for the costs of administering and using funds disbursed to Grantee under the Grant, unless agreed to in writing and in advance by Donor.

Unexpended Funds: The Foundation reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to discontinue funding if it is not satisfied with the progress of the grant or the content of any required written report. In the event of discontinuation or at the close of the grant, any unexpended funds shall immediately be returned to the Foundation, except where the Foundation has agreed in writing to an alternative use of the unused funds.

No-cost extension:  If needed, Grantee should submit a request for a no-cost extension to the program officer before the end of the grant period.  The request should contain the reason for the extension, any unexpended funds identified and how the funds will be used, and the length of time requested for the extension. 

Royalties: Any materials produced by this grant and earnings thereon shall not provide royalties or otherwise inure to the personal benefit of individuals connected with this grant. Any funds realized by Grantee or any sub-grantee from product sales must be used exclusively for this project.

No guarantee of future funding:  The Grantee acknowledges that the receipt of this grant does not imply a commitment on behalf of Knight Foundation to continue funding beyond the terms listed in this grant agreement.

If you agree to the terms and conditions of this grant agreement, please sign and return this document to Knight Foundation.  A self-addressed envelope is enclosed for your convenience.  Please keep a copy of the signed document for your grant files.

Grant payment according to the terms above will be released within 60 days of receiving this signed agreement.


(Type or print name and title of person signing the acknowledgment)


Signed:                                                                    Date:                                                           

(Authorized signature of senior executive officer)

All future correspondence regarding this grant should refer to grant #2010-0139.

Please sign and return this document to:

Grants Administration
John S. and James L. Knight Foundation
Wachovia Financial Center, Suite 3300
200 South Biscayne Blvd.
Miami, FL  33131-2349