Pacific Southwest, Region 9
Serving: Arizona, California, Hawaii, Nevada, Pacific Islands, Tribal Nations
Wetland Program Development Grants: FY 2015
Frequently Asked Questions
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Which Track? If my government agency has an EPA-approved Wetland Program Plan, would we apply under Track One or Track Two? »
If your State or Tribe or Territory has an EPA-approved Wetland Program Plan, you can apply under Track One. Track One is for States and Tribes and Territories who have an EPA-approved Wetland Program Plan or would like to develop one, using Wetland Program Development Grant funds.
States and Tribes and Territories can also submit a proposal under Track Two.
If a State or Tribe or Territory wishes to submit a proposal under both Track One and Track Two, they may do so, but they would need to submit two separate proposals.
Applicants who are local governments, inter-tribal consortia, inter-state consortia, or universities chartered as a part of State government; must apply under Track Two.
What do I do if I have problems with grants.gov? »
Many applicants do experience challenges with grants.gov. The best way to address grants.gov problems is to NOT wait until the last day to fill out your grants.gov forms and submit your application. Some have submitted a grants.gov application, which they thought was error free, only to receive an error message 24 hours later, after the deadline has passed.
If you do run into problems, please contact grants.gov, as soon as possible. You can contact grants.gov at 1-800-518-4726 and/or at the email address provided in the RFP ( http://www.grants.gov/web/grants/support.html ). They are open 24 hours a day and 7 days a week. Discuss your problem with grants.gov and document your discussion, for your records.
So that the EPA office can track problems with grants.gov, please notify the Wetland Grants Lead, as listed in the RFP, and let them know what grants.gov problem you are having. Also let them know what you are doing to try to resolve it (e.g., contacting grants.gov). The Wetland Grants Lead for EPA, Region 9 for 2015 is Leana Rosetti. You can contact her at (415) 972-3070 (firstname.lastname@example.org) as indicated in the RFP.
Please note that the EPA Wetland Grant Lead does not have technical expertise in grants.gov. It is important that you also contact grants.gov directly with any problems. You do not need to wait for a reply from the EPA Wetland Grants Lead before you contact grants.gov.
And, again, submitting your application well ahead of the deadline, will increase your chance of having grants.gov problems resolved prior to the deadline.
Would a bibliography be put in the attachments? »
Answer:Bibliographies or literature citations are not one of the optional attachments listed in the request for proposals. The optional attachments listed include pictures and maps, staff resumes, and support letters (Section IV.C.3.F., entitled, "Optional"). Bibliographies or literature citations are not required in proposals. If an applicant chooses to provide literature citations, this information should be included within the 16-page limit.
Do you have general advice on submitting grant applications? »
In general, for any grant application you submit for any program, it is a good idea to:
- Read the request for proposals carefully.
- Understand the key focus of the particular grant-funding program.
- Comply with application requirements.
- Pay attention to deadline dates and times.
- Note the threshold eligibility criteria. If your application does not meet these criteria it cannot be reviewed in the competition.
- Note the ineligible activities and do not apply to fund those.
- Note the match requirement and make sure your proposal meets it.
- Note the format for applications and have your application follow it.
- Read the selection criteria carefully, as this is what reviewers will use to score your proposal.
- Make key information easy to find for application reviewers.
- Have someone else go over your application before you send it in.
- Ask for feedback, if your proposal is not successful.
For Tribes, can Bureau of Indian Affairs Section 638 funds be used for match? »
Yes, Section 638 funds from the Bureau of Indian Affairs can be used for match. The matching funds must be for costs that are allowable for the grant project; the same as with other grant matching contributions.
Would grant funds be provided to the grantee on an advance basis or on a reimbursement basis? »
Funds for wetland program development grants are typically provided on an advance basis, unless the EPA requires a specific grantee to use reimbursement only.
Can foreign universities apply for a grant for a project outside the U.S.? »
No, only U.S. states, territories, tribes, and universities may apply for projects with the U.S.
Is an Interim Financial Conflict of Interest (COI) statement required, even if it is not applicable? »
No, if it is not applicable you do not need to submit it. If EPA determines it is applicable in the future, we will ask you to submit it.
If an applicant is not able to accept federal funds, can they have another entity serve as their fiscal agent? »
Applicants must be able to accept federal funds and must be eligible under the Wetland Grant RFP. In the scenario above, the fiscal agent would need to be the applicant.
Questions Regarding the Biennial Grant Cycle
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Why did R9 decide to implement a 2-yr funding process? »
It gives us the opportunity to provide two fiscal years of funding under one RFP. The RFP is not expected to change in concept from FY14 and the focus is still Wetland Program Plans and the Core Elements Framework. In addition, going to a two fiscal year grants provides applicants with a greater ability to plan financially for more than one year at a time.
If a proposal doesn't get selected, can they reapply in FY16? »
No. They will have to wait until FY17 to reapply.
If our proposal does not get selected, will the Region hold proposals for the next solicitation (FY17)? »
No. All applicants will need to re-apply under the FY17/FY18 Request for Proposals.
Can one proposal be submitted for both Track One and Two? »
No. Each proposal will be evaluated under either Track One or Track Two.
Will a proposal rank/score higher if they have an EPA approved Wetland Program Plan in place? »
There are no additional points for having an EPA approved Wetland Program Plan; however, the focus of the FY15 WPDG RFP is the development of Wetland Program Plans and there are more funds available under Track One to accommodate the RFP focus. The Region has discretion to move funds between the two tracks, if necessary.
How will you handle second year funding? »
All proposals will be incrementally funded. Incremental funding will be determined based on an assessment of the work plan. The increments will be determined based on the budgets submitted with the work plan and how best to support the work under the two year project.
Will you accept proposals for 1 year funding only? »
Yes. We will accept proposals for 1 year funding. However, the next Request for Proposals will not be announced until FY17. Applicants need to be aware there will be no announcement in FY16, which means no funds available.
If we get awarded can we put our funds in a PPG? Can we have a multi-year PPG? »
Yes. If awarded, applicants can put funds into their PPG. The PPG will be amended to accommodate the two year funding. Each applicant will be assessed as to the validity of using their PPG as the funding vehicle. If the applicant is experiencing an administrative burden using the PPG vehicle, the Wetland grant will be a standalone grant. This will be determined on a case-by-case basis.
What if the FY16 WPDG funding estimate is less than the final actual amount allocated to EPA R9? How will that affect the incremental funds available for FY16? »
If the Region receives less than the estimate, the incremental funds will be cut by the percentage of the difference. The Project Officers assigned to each grant will work with the grantees to determine how, what and where to adjust the funding and work plan, if necessary.
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