America s Marine Highway Grants

Mitigate landside congestion and receive public benefit and external cost savings by awarding Marine Highway grants to qualified applicants to implement projects or components of a designated Marine Highway project.

This meets the objectives of the National Defense Authorization Act of FY 2010
(111th Congress, Public Law 111-84), which amends the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 (110th Congress, Public Law 110-140).

Agency - Department of Transportation

The Department of Transportation's mission is to ensure fast, safe, efficient, accessible and convenient transportation that meets vital national interests and enhances the quality of life of the American people, today and into the future.

Office - See Regional Agency Offices.

Maritime Administration Gateway Offices.


Program Accomplishments

Not Applicable.

Uses and Use Restrictions

The assistance will be used to provide waterborne alternative to available landside transportation services using documented vessels and provide transportation services for passengers or freight (or both) that may reduce congestion on landside infrastructure, realize public benefit and/or reduce external costs using documented vessels.

Components of projects that are eligible for grant funding include, but are not limited to the following:
• Port and terminal infrastructure (wharves, docks, terminals, paving, etc.)
• Cargo, passenger and/or vessel handling equipment
• Efficiency or capacity improvements in ports, terminals, aboard vessels, intermodal connectors, etc.


• Investments that improve environmental sustainability; and
• New or used vessel purchase or vessel modifications,.

100 percent are discretionary funds.

Eligibility Requirements

Applicant Eligibility

Grant applicants must be public agencies at the state, regional or local level including, but not limited to, Metropolitan Planning Organizations, State governments (including State Departments of Transportation) and port authorities.

They must also have had their projects for which they are requesting funds be designated as "Marine Highway Projects" under America s Marine Highway Program (110th Congress, Public Law 110-140).
In order to receive a grant under this program, applicants must submit an application to the Secretary and demonstrate that the project is financially viable, the funds will be spent efficiently and effectively, and that a market exists for the services of the proposed project as evidenced by contracts or written statements of intent from potential customers.

An applicant shall provide at least 20 percent of the project costs from non-Federal sources.

In awarding grants under the program, the Secretary shall give a preference to those projects or components that present the most financially viable transportation services and require the lowest percentage Federal share of the costs."" Eligible applicants include those entities defined within OMB A-87, excluding Federal agencies due to matching-fund regulatory requirements.

Sponsored organizations may apply if an MOU/MOA exists with a public agency defined by OMB A-87.

Beneficiary Eligibility

Eligible beneficiaries include those entities defined in OMB A-102 and Circular A-122.

Credentials/Documentation

The following documentation is required:
1. First page of application:
A. Marine Highway Project name (as stated in the Department s Letter of Designation)
B. Primary point of contact for applicant
C. Amount of dollars of Grant Funds the applicant is seeking, sources and share of other matching funds.
D. Summary of what the grant funding will be used for
E. Project parties
F. Recipients of Marine Highway grants and their first-tier sub-awardees will be required to have a DUNS number (http://www.dnb.com) and a current registration in the Central Contractor Registration (http://www.ccr.gov). While these items do not need to be provided as part of the application, a Marine Highway Grant will not be awarded if a recipient or first-tier sub-awardee does not have these items.
2. Contact Information: An application should include the name, phone number, e-mail address and organization address of the primary point of contact for the applicant. The Department will use this information to inform parties of the Department s decision regarding selection of grantees, as well as to contact parties in the event that the Department needs additional information about the application.
3. Grant Funds and Sources and Uses of Project Funds: An application should include information about the amount of grant funding requested, sources and uses of all project funds, total project costs, percentage of project costs that would paid for with Marine Highway Grant funds and the identity and percentage shares of all parties providing funds for the project (including Federal funds provided under other programs).
4. Selection Criteria: In general, applications will be evaluated based on the information provided in the original application for designation as a Marine Highway Project as set forth in the (final rule). However, as addressed in section (IV) "Selection Criteria" of this notice, applicants may provide additional information. This information should be provided in the order it was solicited in the (final rule).
5. National Environmental Policy Act Requirement: An application must detail whether the project will significantly impact the natural, social and/or economic environment. If the NEPA process is completed, an applicant must indicate the date of, and provide a Web site link or other reference to, the final Categorical Exclusion, Finding of No Significant Impact or Record of Decision. If the NEPA process is underway but not complete, the application must detail where the project is in the process, indicate the anticipated date of completion and provide a website link or other reference to copies of any NEPA documents prepared.
6. Environmentally Related Federal, State and Local Actions: An application must indicate whether the proposed project is likely to require actions by other agencies (e.g., permits), indicate the status of such actions and provide a website link or other reference to materials submitted to the other agencies, and/or demonstrate compliance with other Federal, State and local regulations as applicable.
7. Certification Requirements: In order for an application to be considered for a grant award, the Chief Executive Officer of the applicant is required to certify, in writing, to the following:
A. That, except as noted in this grant application, nothing has changed from the original application for formal designation as a Marine Highway Project.
B. The project sponsor will administer the project and any funds received will be spent efficiently and effectively.
C. Applicants will provide information, data and reports as required by the grantor. OMB Circular No. A-87 applies to this program.

Aplication and Award Process

Preapplication Coordination

As stated in the Notice of Funding Availability, "The 2010 National Defense Authorization Act directs the Secretary of Transportation to establish and implement a short sea transportation grant program to implement projects or components of projects designated as a Marine Highway Project.

" The Final Rule for America s Marine Highway Program (46 CFR Part 393)) provides the criteria to submit an application to become a designated Marine Highway Project.

From the Notice of Funding Availability, "Requirements of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) may apply.

Applicants should consult 40 CFR Section 1500 if there are any questions regarding NEPA requirements…An application must detail whether the project will significantly impact the natural, social and/or economic environment.

If the NEPA process is completed, an applicant must indicate the date of, and provide a Web site link or other reference to, the final Categorical Exclusion, Finding of No Significant Impact or Record of Decision.

If the NEPA process is underway but not complete, the application must detail where the project is in the process, indicate the anticipated date of completion and provide a website link or other reference to copies of any NEPA documents prepared.".

Environmental impact information is not required for this program.

This program is eligible for coverage under E.O.

12372, "Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs." An applicant should consult the office or official designated as the single point of contact in his or her State for more information on the process the State requires to be followed in applying for assistance, if the State has selected the program for review.

Application Procedures

OMB Circular No. A-102 applies to this program. This program is excluded from coverage under OMB Circular No. A-110. See guidance provided herein throughout.

Award Procedures

All applicable Federal laws, rules and regulations will apply to projects that receive Marine Highway Grants. How soon after award a project is expected to expend Grant Funds and start construction, acquisition or procurement will be considered on a case-by case basis and will be specified in the project-specific grant agreement. The Department reserves the right to revoke any award of Marine Highway Grant funds and to award such funds to another project to the extent that such funds are not timely expended and in accordance with the project schedule. The Department s ability to obligate funds for Marine Highway Grants expires on September 30, 2010.

Deadlines

Contact the headquarters or regional office, as appropriate, for application deadlines.

Authorization

2010 National Defense Authorization Act (Section 3515), Public Law 111-84, 46 U.S.C 55601 (g).

Range of Approval/Disapproval Time

From 15 to 30 days. Contingent on publication date. The end date is 3 weeks following publication.

Appeals

Not Applicable.

Renewals

The Department s ability to obligate funds for Marine Highway Grants under the National Defense Authorization Act of FY 2010 expires on September 30, 2010.

Assistance Considerations

Formula and Matching Requirements

Statutory Formula: Public Law 111-84.
Matching Requirements: Percent: 20.%. ?* Applicants are required to provide at least 20 percent of the project costs from non-Federal sources.
MOE requirements are not applicable to this program.

Length and Time Phasing of Assistance

Applicants shall demonstrate to the satisfaction of the Secretary that the funds received will be spent efficiently and effectively. How soon after award a project is expected to expend Grant Funds and start construction, acquisition, or procurement will be considered on a case-by case basis and will be specified in the project-specific grant agreement. See the following for information on how assistance is awarded/released: Grants are expended upon invoicing .

Post Assistance Requirements

Reports

According to the Notice of Funding Availability, "Applicants will provide information, data, and reports as required by the grantor.".

The grantee shall submit an electronic copy of the SF- 270 form, no more frequently than monthly for Advance or Reimbursement, and the SF-425 Federal Financial Report which replaces the SF-269 and the SF-272.

Monthly Project Reports are due to the Government beginning on the first day of the first full month following execution of the grant agreement.

(SF-425).

Monthly per SF-425.

Audits

In accordance with the provisions of OMB Circular No. A-133 (Revised, June 27, 2003), "Audits of States, Local Governments, and Non-Profit Organizations," nonfederal entities that expend financial assistance of $500,000 or more in Federal awards will have a single or a program-specific audit conducted for that year. Nonfederal entities that expend less than $500,000 a year in Federal awards are exempt from Federal audit requirements for that year, except as noted in Circular No. A-133. In the section of the grant agreement cited "Other Reports in accordance with the purposes of the Recovery Act, the grantee may be required to submit additional information in responses to requests from DOT, OMB, the Congressional Budget Office, the Government Accountability Office of the DOT inspector General." The Government will inform gantees if and when such additional reports are required.

Records

Records must be maintained as outlined in the Federal Acquisition Regulations and OMB A 136 (Financial Reporting Requirements).

Financial Information

Account Identification

69-1750-0-1-403 - Operations and Training Account.

Obigations

(Project Grants) FY 09 $0; FY 10 est $7,000,000; FY 11 est $0

Range and Average of Financial Assistance

Grants can be up to $7 million.

Regulations, Guidelines, and Literature

Existing literature includes MARAD 2010-0035 (April 9, 2010). In addition, the Maritime Administration solicited a call for projects on April 15, 2010 (Federal Register, Vol. 75, No. 68; p. 18095).

Information Contacts

Regional or Local Office

See Regional Agency Offices. Maritime Administration Gateway Offices.

Headquarters Office

Michael J. Gordon, Maritime Administration, Office of Marine Highways and Passenger Services, 1200 New Jersey Ave., Mail Stop 201, Washington, District of Columbia 20590 Email: michael.gordon@dot.gov Phone: (202)366-5468 Fax: (202) 366-6988.

Criteria for Selecting Proposals

Three criteria will be considered in the evaluation process, which were established in the final rule. This information will have been provided by applicants during the project designation process. No additional applicant input is required to address these criteria. These criteria establish the degree to which projects are expected to:

1. Reduce external cost and provide public benefit,
2. Offer a lower-cost alternative to increasing land-based capacity in the Corridor, and
3. Demonstrate the likelihood of becoming self-supporting in a specified and reasonable timeframe.

I. Applicants may, however opt to provide additional information specific to the above criteria if they desire. In evaluating this option, applicants should consider paragraph (g)(2)(B) of section 3515 of the National Defense Authorization Act of 2010, which requires that, in order to receive a grant under the program, the following factors will be taken into consideration:
1. Applicants shall demonstrate to the satisfaction of the Secretary that the funds received will be spent efficiently and effectively,
2. Applicants shall demonstrate to the satisfaction of the Secretary that a market exists for the services of the proposed project as evidenced by contracts or written statements of intent from potential customers,
3. An applicant shall provide at least 20 percent costs from non-Federal sources, and,
4. In awarding grants under the program, the Secretary shall give preference to those projects or components that present the most financially viable transportation services and require the lowest percentage Federal share of the costs.

While the criteria above were generally addressed in the original Marine Highway Project application requirements (Section 393.4(e)1(G); Proposed Project Timeline; and (F)(ii) and (i); Business Planning, respectively), these more specific requirements may warrant submission of additional information in response to this Notice of Funding Availability. It is important that this information is available to the Department during the grant evaluation process.



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