West Coast Estuaries Initiative

The West Coast Estuaries Initiative is a focused effort that evolved from the Environmental Protection Agency's Targeted Watersheds Grants Program.

The initiative is designed to promote and support the protection and restoration of high value coastal aquatic resources in geographic areas that
are subject to the pressures of population and economic growth through comprehensive watershed protection and management practices at the local level.

The projects receiving assistance will support the EPA's goals for Region 10's coastal watersheds from Alaska to Oregon's southern border.

These goals include: (1) clean and safe water through the protection of water quality and (2) healthy communities and ecosystems through the restoration and protection of ecosystems.

Funding Priority ? Fiscal Year 2009: EPA Region 10 recognizes the impact of growth and development on the health of the region's coastal watersheds and the diverse marine flora and fauna that they support.

Extensive research shows that where development is located, how much development occurs and what practices are used when developing greatly affect the chemical, physical and biological integrity of marine and fresh waters.

For Federal Fiscal Year 2009, the Region expects to offer assistance in watersheds west of the Cascade Mountain divide from the southern border of Oregon to the northern border of Washington, including those watersheds entering the Columbia River below Bonneville Dam.

Additionally, in Alaska, the Region expects to offer assistance in three watersheds draining into the northern portion of Cook Inlet.

These watersheds are the Lower Susitna, Matanuska and Anchorage Borough watersheds.

Local and tribal governments are faced with implementing multiple planning processes and mandates.

Watershed planning decisions regarding where protection and restoration occurs, how much protection and restoration is necessary, and what practices ensure effectiveness are frequently the focus of watershed plans.

Often missing from these processes is an effort to connect watershed-based decisions with land development techniques and storm water controls.

Linking protection and restoration decisions with future land use decisions can prevent pollution and greatly enhance the potential to maintain the region's coastal resources.

Grants for this Program


Agency - Environmental Protection Agency

The mission of the Environmental Protection Agency is to protect human health and the environment. Since 1970, EPA has been working for a cleaner, healthier environment for the American people.

Office - Daniel Steinborn, Puget Sound Estuary Program Financial Assistance Manager Ecosystems and Community Health Unit U. S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region 10 1200 Sixth Avenue, Suite 900, ETPA-086 Seattle, WA 98101 (206) 553-2728 1-800 424-4EPA, extension 3-2728 e-mail: steinborn.daniel@epa.gov


Program Accomplishments

The first awards within the Puget Sound Estuary for the Targeted Watershed Grants program were made in Federal Fiscal Year 2008. No progress reports from these assisted projects were available, yet, at the time that this CFDA listing was being written.

Uses and Use Restrictions

Local and tribal governments are at various stages of developing and applying effective and robust watershed programs.

Some need to improve the scientific understanding of their watersheds.

Others understand how their watersheds work and need assistance implementing a plan.

Therefore, a wide range of activities will be eligible including, but not limited to, activities that:(1) Enhance and implement watershed protection and restoration plans, land use and transportation plans, basin plans, storm water controls and/or land development standards to maintain native vegetation and natural hydrology by protecting and restoring wetland, riparian, upland and near shore habitats and ecological processes.

(2) Implement watershed protection by enhancing local planning processes under the state's Coastal Zone Management Program through the development of watershed land use designations, development standards and other regulations or incentive programs that protect and restore coastal watersheds.

(3) Refine and implement watershed land use plans based on watershed models predicting hydrological impacts of alternative future land cover conditions, development scenarios and resulting aquatic resource conditions.

(4) Develop and carry out laws, ordinances and incentive programs to implement watershed programs such as systematic implementation of low impact development in sensitive basins, land acquisition or transfer of development rights approaches and techniques.

More details on the restrictions for this program will be provided in the request for proposals which will be published on the Region 10 web site.

Assistance agreement awards under this program may involve or relate to geospatial information.

Further information regarding geospatial information may be obtained by viewing the following website: http://geodata.epa.gov.

Certain projects or activities are ineligible for West Coast Estuaries funding.

These include activities required or regulated under the CWA.

For example, activities for the development of Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDLs) and required activities under Phase I and II Stormwater permits will not be funded.

Activities implementing the non-regulatory component of TMDLs are eligible (e.g., the elements of a watershed plan that address non-point source pollution).



Eligibility Requirements

Applicant Eligibility

Federally recognized Indian Tribal governments located within or governing territory within the coastal watersheds west of the Cascade Mountain divide of Washington and Oregon, including those watersheds entering the Columbia River below Bonneville Dam, are eligible to apply.

Local governments located within or governing territory within the coastal watersheds west of the Cascade Mountain divide of Washington and Oregon, including those watersheds entering the Columbia River below Bonneville Dam, are also eligible to apply.

Also eligible to apply are special purpose districts including, but not limited to, irrigation districts, conservation district and water & sewer districts located within the coastal watersheds west of the Cascade Mountain divide of Washington and Oregon, including those watersheds entering the Columbia River below Bonneville Dam.

Similar entities in three specific coastal watersheds in Alaska will also be eligible to apply.

Those watersheds are the Lower Susitna, Matanuska and Anchorage Borough watersheds.

State agencies, institutions of higher education and nongovernmental entities are not eligible to receive a direct award under this announcement.

However, they are encouraged to work as collaborators (subrecipients or subcontractors) with eligible applicants.

Federal agencies are ineligible for subaward or subcontract work under this announcement.

For certain competitive funding opportunities under this CFDA description, the Agency may limit eligibility to compete to a number or subset of eligible applicants consistent with the Agency's Assistance Agreement Competition Policy.

Beneficiary Eligibility

Anyone/General Public

Credentials/Documentation

None.

Aplication and Award Process

Preapplication Coordination

In accordance with EPA's Assistance Agreement Competition Policy (EPA Order 5700.5A1), EPA staff will not meet with individual applicants to discuss draft proposals, provide informal comments on draft proposals, or provide advice to applicants on how to respond to ranking criteria.

Applicants are responsible for the contents of their respective applications and proposals.

The EPA will respond to questions from individual applicants regarding threshold eligibility criteria, administrative issues related to the submission of a proposal and requests for clarification about the request for proposals.

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

Applicants will be required to submit a formal grant application. The standard application forms as furnished by the EPA and required by OMB Circular s No. A-110 and A-102 must be used for this program. EPA requires final applications to be made on Standard Form 424. Requests for application kits must be submitted to the Environmental Protection Agency, Grants Administration Division, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., Mail Code 3903R, Washington, DC 20460 or though the EPA Region 10 Grants Administration web site at: http://yosemite.epa.gov/r10/omp.nsf/webpage/. Applicants may be able to use http://www.grants.gov to electronically apply for certain grant opportunities under this CFDA.

Award Procedures

For competitive awards, EPA will review and evaluate applications, proposals, and/or submissions in accordance with the terms, conditions, and criteria stated in the competitive announcement. Competitions will be conducted in accordance with EPA policies/regulations for competing assistance agreements. EPA reserves the right to reject all proposals or applications and make no awards under any RFP issued under this program.

Deadlines

Contact the Region 10 office of the EPA for information on applications deadlines.

Authorization

Consolidated Appropriations Act for Fiscal Year 2008, Public Law 110-161

Range of Approval/Disapproval Time

The region expects that its review of the applications received will be completed within 120 to 150 days following the deadline for the submission of applications.

Appeals

Assistance agreement competition-related disputes will be resolved in accordance with the dispute resolution procedures published in 70 FR (Federal Register) 3629, 3630 (January 26, 2005). Copies of these procedures may also be requested by contacting the individual(s) listed as "Information Contacts." Disputes relating to matters other than the competitive selection of recipients will be resolved under 40 CFR 30.63 or 40 CFR 31.70, as applicable.

Renewals

Not applicable.

Assistance Considerations

Formula and Matching Requirements

This program has no statutory formula requirement. Under the Targeted Watershed Grants program, of which this initiative is a component, it is the Agency's policy to require applicants to demonstrate a minimum non-federal match of 25% of the total cost of the project or projects. Match may be cash or in-kind consistent with the regulation governing match requirements (40 C.F.R. ?31.24 or 40 C.F.R. ?30.23, as applicable). Tribes may be exempt from this match requirement if they are constrained to such an extent that fulfilling the match requirement would impose an undue economic hardship on the Tribe.

Length and Time Phasing of Assistance

The term of the cooperative agreement will be determined at the time the financial assistance is awarded.

Post Assistance Requirements

Reports

Progress report requirements will be a part of each assistance agreement.

A schedule showing interim milestones and the outputs that will be completed by the end of the project period will also be included.

Other specific reporting requirements will be defined in the Assistance Agreement based on the statement of work described in the application.

Audits

Grants and cooperative agreements are subject to inspections and audits by the Comptroller General of the United States, the EPA Office of Inspector General, other EPA staff, or any authorized representative of the Federal government. Reviews by the EPA Project Officer and the Grants Specialist may occur each year. In accordance with the provisions of OMB Circular No. A-133 (Revised, June 27, 2003), "Audits of States, Local Governments, and Non-Profit Organizations," non-federal entities that expend $500,000 or more in a year in Federal awards shall have a single or a program-specific audit conducted for that year. Non-federal 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 OMB Circular No. A-133.

Records

Financial records, including all documents to support entries on accounting records and to substantiate charges to each grant must be kept available to personnel authorized to examine EPA grant accounts. All records must be maintained until expiration of three years from the date of submission of the final expenditure report. If questions still remain, such as those raised by an audit, related records should be retained until the matter is completely resolved.

Financial Information

Account Identification

68-0103-0-1-304.

Obigations

FY 2007 obligations: $2,500; FY 08 $2,800,000; and FY 09 $2,800,000.

Range and Average of Financial Assistance

Individual awards are expected to range in size from $400,000 to $600,000. If the EPA receives proposals for seven (7) approvable projects, the mean award size would be $400,000.

Regulations, Guidelines, and Literature

For grants and cooperative agreements with local governments, tribal governments and special purpose districts, the procedures and requirements should be in conformance with 40 C.F.R. Part 31 "Uniform Administrative Requirements for Grants and Cooperative Agreements to State and Local Governments", 40 C.F.R. Part 35 "Environmental Program Grants-State, Interstate and Local Government Agencies", and OMB Circular Nos. A-87 "Cost Principles for State and Local Governments" and A-102 "Grants and Cooperative Agreements for States and Local Governments."

Information Contacts

Regional or Local Office

Daniel Steinborn, Puget Sound Estuary Program Financial Assistance Manager Ecosystems and Community Health Unit U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region 10 1200 Sixth Avenue, Suite 900, ETPA-086 Seattle, WA 98101 (206) 553-2728 1-800 424-4EPA, extension 3-2728 e-mail: steinborn.daniel@epa.gov

Headquarters Office

Not applicable.

Criteria for Selecting Proposals

The evaluation and selection criteria for competitive awards under this CFDA description will be published in the announcement of the competitive funding opportunity (the Request for Proposals or RFP). Projects will be selected based on a competitive process which may include factors such as relevancy to the EPA's mission, technical merit, the geographic diversity represented by the array of possible projects and the likelihood of success. In making the final funding decisions, the Approving Official may also consider national and regional programmatic priorities, the Region 10 strategy and the balance of funds available. The actual selection criteria to be used will be identified in the RFP.



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