Funding Availability for Puget Sound Action Agenda - Climate Resilient Riparian Systems Lead
About Climate Resilient Riparian Systems Lead Funding
This request for funding announces the availability of funds and solicits applications from eligible applicants that are interested in acting as the Puget Sound Climate Resilient Riparian Systems Lead.
This funding opportunity is focused on working with local programs and landowners to voluntarily protect and restore Puget Sound riparian habitat in priority watersheds, supporting salmon recovery and resilience to climate change. The successful applicant will develop a shared approach to achieving permanent protection (and restoration, as appropriate) of riparian areas concentrated within prioritized stream reaches across Puget Sound.
The funding is intended to go towards direct implementation of riparian conservation and climate resiliency goals, as well as other Vital Sign recovery objectives, as described in the 2022 Puget Sound Action Agenda (particularly Strategy 4 – Riparian Areas, and Strategy 20 – Climate Adaptation and Resilience as well as relevant Implementation Strategies).
The overall goal of the Puget Sound Climate Resilient Riparian Systems Lead Request for Funding is to establish an innovative and collaborative riparian conservation program that provides financial incentives for landowners to permanently protect and restore riparian areas important for providing ecosystem services, including those supporting salmon recovery, while successfully implementing approaches to promote climate resiliency.
EPA anticipates awarding up to $30 million over four years of incremental funding under this announcement, to be leveraged using non-federal matching funds with the hope of building a robust and sustainable program.
The successful applicant will manage a sub-award program for supporting riparian conservation efforts.
We strongly encourage coalitions of applicants for this funding opportunity.
We anticipate that the following three objectives are needed to achieve the Puget Sound Climate Resilient Riparian Systems Lead program goals:
- Make and Manage Subawards. Develop and carry out a system for making subawards to authorized entities.
- Innovation and Partner Engagement. Develop and implement innovative models and mechanisms for engaging with partners to achieving sustainable results.
- Manage the Cooperative Agreement. Adaptively manage the Climate Resilient Riparian Systems Lead cooperative agreement with EPA.
Specific activities supportive of these objectives are described in the Request for Applications document under "How to Apply" below.
For more information about how EPA distributes money from Congress to help protect and restore Puget Sound, visit Funding and Grants for Puget Sound.
How to Apply
Application packages must be submitted electronically to EPA through Grants.gov no later than Monday, March 31, 2023, at 11:59pm (Eastern) in order to be considered for funding.
Visit Grants.gov Funding Opportunity Number: EPA-I-R10-PS-2023-001 for more information and to apply.
For questions, contact Melissa Whitaker (firstname.lastname@example.org).
- March 31, 2023 - Applications due
- May 2023 - Anticipated notification of selection
- July 2023 - Anticipated award
EPA is providing flexibilities to applicants experiencing challenges related to COVID-19. Please see the Flexibilities Available to Organizations Impacted by COVID-19 clause in section IV of EPA's Solicitation Clauses.
EPA will host the same informational webinar on two different dates. Potential applicants are encouraged to participate in one of these information sessions to learn more about the Puget Sound Geographic Program and the grant application process.
Pre-registration is not required.
- January 25 (completed)
- Thursday, February 9, 2-3:30pm (Pacific)
- Join 2/9 webinar (Microsoft Teams): Meeting ID: 220 390 718 695; Passcode: vxrXxk
- Or join by phone-only: 206-800-4483 - Phone Conference ID: 310 857 617#
During the webinars, EPA will highlight any changes to the program, review eligibility criteria, funding limits, etc. Participants will have the opportunity to ask questions (answers will be posted on this page).
EPA's presentation slides and a recording of the webinar are available upon request. Contact Melissa Whitaker (email@example.com).
Who is eligible to apply to this RFA?
As described in Assistance Listing 66.123, eligible entities are:
- Federal and Washington State government agencies.
- Public and private institutions of higher education located in the United States.
- Units of local government organized under Washington State law and located within the Greater Puget Sound basin.
- Special purpose districts, as defined by Washington State law at RCW 36.93.020, including but not limited to, irrigation districts, and water and sewer districts that are located in or govern land and water resources within the greater Puget Sound basin; and conservation districts located in or governing land and water resources within the greater Puget Sound Basin.
- Watershed planning units formed under RCW 90.82.040 and RCW 90.82.060, local management boards organized under RCW 90.88.030, salmon recovery lead entities organized pursuant to RCW 77.85, regional fisheries enhancement groups organized pursuant to RCW 77.95.060 and Marine Resource Committees organized pursuant to RCW 36.125.010 and RCW 36.125.020 if they are located within or their jurisdictions include waters and/or lands within the greater Puget Sound basin.
- Intrastate organizations such as associations of cities, counties or conservation districts in the greater Puget Sound basin.
- Nonprofit non-governmental entities, as defined by 2 C.F.R 200.70, means any corporation, trust, association, cooperative, or other organization that: (1) is operated primarily for scientific, educational, service, charitable, or similar purposes in the public interest; (2) is not organized primarily for profit; and (3) uses its net proceeds to maintain, improve, and/or expand its operations (the term includes tax-exempt. nonprofit neighborhood and labor organizations. Note that 2 CFR 200.1 specifically excludes Institutions of Higher Education from the definition of non-profit organization because they are separately defined in the regulation. While not considered to be a non-profit organization(s) as defined by 2 CFR 200.1, public or nonprofit Institutions of Higher Education are, nevertheless, eligible to submit applications under this RFA. Nonprofit organizations that are not exempt from taxation under section 501 of the Internal Revenue Code must submit other forms of documentation of nonprofit status; such as certificates of incorporation as nonprofit under state or tribal law. Nonprofit organizations exempt from taxation under section 501(c)(4) of the Internal Revenue Code that lobby are not eligible for EPA funding as provided in the Lobbying Disclosure Act, 2 U.S.C. 1611.
- Federally recognized tribes located within the greater Puget Sound basin and any consortium of these eligible tribes.
See the Request for Applications for more information on eligibility.
If two eligible entities are applying, can they be co-applicants?
The application process requires one lead entity only and does not allow for co-applicants. However, in your workplan, you can designate other entities as partners or sub-awardees. The Puget Sound Geographic Program encourages partnerships. Please see EPA’s Subaward Policy to understand the requirements and differences between subrecipients and contractors.
What does “incremental funding” mean?
Incremental funding is the partial funding of a contract, with additional funds anticipated to be provided at a later time. EPA will provide funding for multi-year projects in smaller increments awarded each year.
What is the difference between a consultant and a contractor?
Please see EPA guidance, Interim General Budget Development Guidance for Applicants and Recipients of EPA Financial Assistance (pdf), Section VI (“Contracts”) for more information about contractors and consultants.
subaward work in "rural" and "agricultural areas." Should the expectation be that funding priorities established for the subawards explicitly exclude (i.e. make ineligible) more urbanized areas? Or will the prioritization process conducted post award establish where work should be funded, which may include some urban work?
The RFA language describes how the applicant will develop a geographic focus and prioritization scheme for reach scale conservation work in strategic Puget Sound watersheds and apply that approach to selecting subawards.
the money that will be administered by the Lead. What are the provisions for funding the work of the Lead itself?
We anticipate that the successful applicant will need a task to manage the cooperative agreement and adaptively manage the work of the cooperative agreement with EPA. Please review that section of the RFA. Funding can be included for managing the work of the RFA (i.e., the work of the Lead).
The links we shared in this webinar are available in the RFA document.
do sub-awardees need to be identified in the application?
Sub-awardees do not need to be identified in the application. Discuss the process of how you will select sub-awardees. Making and managing subawards will be an anticipated task of the successful applicant to this RFA.
usage need to meet the same requirements as those you outlined for the funding in this RFA?
Please review the match requirements of the RFA (section III.B) and the citations on match funding provided in the PowerPoint presentation.