Service Centers

A service center is an organizational unit that provides goods or services primarily to other internal university operations. Sponsored and Cost Accounting Office establishes the rates and policies for service centers that support University research objectives.

Establish a New Service Center

Please review the Service Center Policy and fill out the Service Center Form. Provide a calculation of the rates and a memo explaining the service center operation to Ann Cannon for review.


Rates are typically approved annually by the URI Service Center Committee. The meeting takes place in September, after the fiscal year end has been closed, and rates are reviewed and approved for the current fiscal year.    

If there are unplanned changes in the service center during the year, the rate can be changed by providing a revised rate calculation and explanation for the change. Mid-year changes are emailed to the chief research cost accountant for initial review who will forward them to the service center committee for review. Approved rate changes will be applied prospectively.

Service Center Fund Balance

At the end of any fiscal year, the surplus or deficit from the current year activities are recorded to the fund balance account (account 3000). The fund balance needs to be incorporated into the following year’s rates when there is a surplus balance. A fund balance surplus means there were more revenues earned than expenditures.

When there is a surplus, it generally means the rates for the prior year were too high. The service center must now absorb the surplus in the following year by including it in the rate calculations, essentially reducing the rate or offsetting expenses. As a general rule, only surpluses and deficits greater than 10% of actual annual revenues must be absorbed into the following year rates.

Who Can Help Me?

All service center inquiries should be direct to Savita Potty 874.9139.
70 Lower College Road, 3rd floor

Manager of Cost Analys Savita Potty 401.874.9139