Permanently restricted – Net assets subject to donor-imposed stipulations that they be maintained in perpetuity by NAS. Generally, the donors of these assets permit NAS to use all or part of the income earned on related investments for general or specific purposes.
Temporarily restricted – Net assets subject to donor-imposed stipulations that may or will be met either by actions of NAS and/or the passage of time. When a donor restriction expires, temporarily restricted net assets are reclassified to unrestricted net assets.
Unrestricted – Net assets arising from exchange transactions and contributions not subject to donor-imposed stipulations.
NAS reports liquid, temporary investments purchased with original maturities of three months or less as cash equivalents.
Investments are stated at fair value. Changes in the fair value of investments are reported within investment income in the statements of activities.
Certain investments are pooled for long-term investment purposes. Investments in the pool are administered as an open-end investment trust, with shares of the pool funds expressed in terms of participating capital units (PCUs). PCU values are used to determine equity in the allocation of investment income among funds in the pool whenever additional funds are contributed or withdrawn.
Contributions, including unconditional promises to give, are recognized as revenues in the period received. Conditional promises to give are not recognized until all conditions on which receipt depends are substantially met.
Gifts of land, buildings, or equipment are reported as unrestricted net assets unless explicit donor stipulations specify how the donated assets must be used. Temporary restrictions on gifts that must be used to acquire long-lived assets are released in the period in which the assets are acquired or placed in service.
Allowances are recorded for estimated uncollectible contributions based upon management’s judgment and analysis of the credit worthiness of the donor, past collection experience, and other relevant factors. Contributions to be received after one year are discounted at an appropriate rate commensurate with risks involved. Amortization of the discount is recorded as additional revenue and is used in accordance with donor-imposed restrictions, if any, on the contributions.
NAS performs certain fundraising activities on behalf of NAEF. NAS collected a total of $4.1 million and $5.3 million in 2010 and 2009, respectively, on behalf of NAEF. NAS disbursed $4.1 million and $5.2 million to NAEF from these collected amounts in 2010 and 2009, respectively. Amounts collected but not yet remitted to NAEF are reported as assets and liabilities in the NAS financial statements.
The majority of NAS activities are performed under cost-reimbursable contracts with the U.S. government. For the years ended December 31, 2010 and 2009, the Department of Transportation provided 45% and 44%, respectively, of NAS government grant and contract revenue.
NAS records federal contracts as exchange transactions, recognizing revenue as recoverable costs are incurred.
Revenues from nonfederal grants qualifying as contributions are recorded by NAS upon notification of the grant award. Such grants are classified as temporarily restricted net assets when use of the grant funds is limited to specific areas of study or is designated for use in future periods.
For both federal and nonfederal grants and contracts that are determined to be exchange transactions, revenue is recognized as the related costs are incurred. Funds received in advance of being earned for these grants are recorded as deferred revenue in the statements of financial position.
Inventories are stated at the lower of cost or net realizable value and include both work in-process and finished goods related to publication activities. The majority of NAS publication inventories and supplies reside with an NAS unit, the National Academy Press (NAP). NAP uses the full absorption costing methodology in pricing finished products. This methodology includes direct printing and related indirect costs. Inventories are included in other current assets in the statements of financial position.