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CONTROLLER ALERT: Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Numbering Schematic

Posted By CFO Council on December 22, 2016

Controller Alerts are designed to highlight emerging financial management issues that may require agency attention or action. These Alerts are intended to inform the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) community of key issues where the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) believes further action may be warranted, but do not constitute official guidance or prescribe specific tasks for agencies beyond consideration of appropriate steps to address the issue.

The purpose of this Controller Alert is to provide notification to Federal agencies that effective October 1, 2018, the numbering construct associated with the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) titles will be changed from ##.### to ###.#### The prefix will align with the 3-digit Common Government-wide Accounting Classification (CGAC) agency code used in the Treasury Account Symbol (TAS) listed in OMB Circular A-11 Appendix C, and the unique suffix number will be revised from 3 to 4 digits to allow additional space for future entries. During this transition, GSA will provide system users with information mapping continuing CFDA titles to their revised CFDA numbers.


The Federal Program Information Act (Public Law 95-220) was signed into law in December 1977 and later amended in October 1983 (Public Law 98-169). This Act serves as the mandate for collection and distribution of current information on federal assistance programs available at, which is managed by the Integrated Award Environment at GSA. Each CFDA title has an associated number for purposes of tracking. Current OMB guidance regarding CFDA is located at 2 C.F.R. Part 200.

GSA and agencies have notified OMB of the concern that agencies may run out of space to create new titles within the current numbering schematic. In response to his concern and after requesting information regarding the impact of this change on existing agency systems, GSA and OMB determined that the numbering schematic will change effective October 1, 2018 allowing the unique suffix number length to be 4 digits.

It was also determined that the CFDA number prefix should align with the 3-digit CGAC agency code used in the TAS listed in OMB Circular A-11 Appendix C. This is consistent with the final data standards established in implementation of the Digital Accountability and Transparency Act of 2014 (DATA Act), which requires that agencies use the 3-digit CGAC as the awarding and funding agency code.

The timing of this change coincides with the requirement for the Financial assistance community to implement the Activity Address Code (AAC) for awarding and funding offices as required by MPM-2016-03.

If you have any questions regarding this alert please contact Rhea Hubbard (

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