Performance Partnership Grants

Improving EPA's partnership with the states and tribes is critical to accelerating environmental outcomes.

Performance Partnership Grants (PPGs) are the cornerstone of the National Environmental Performance Partnership System (NEPPS)- EPA's strategy to strengthen partnerships and build a results-based
management system.

PPGs are innovative grant delivery tools that allow states and tribes to combine up to 20 eligible program grants into a single grant with a single budget.

PPGs can reduce administrative transaction costs, provide the flexibility to direct resources toward the highest priority environmental problems, and support cross-media approaches and initiatives.

EPA's overarching goal is to optimize the leveraging power of PPGs to strategically focus on the joint priorities of EPA, states and Tribes.

PPGs do not include any funding in addition to the state and tribal assistance grants provided under other statutory authorities.

Funding Priority - Fiscal Year 2008: The Agency's ongoing goals for the PPG program are to: (1) strengthen partnerships between EPA, the state, tribes, and interstate agencies through joint planning and priority setting to more effectively deploy resources; (2) provide states, tribes, and interstate agencies with the flexibility to direct resources where they are needed most to address environmental and public health priorities; (3) link program activities more effectively with environmental and public health goals and environmental outcomes; (4) foster implementation of innovative approaches such as pollution prevention, ecosystem management, and community-based environmental protection strategies; and (5) provide savings by streamlining administrative requirements.

To help advance these goals, the Agency has initiated a Maximizing PPGs initiative for FY 2008.

EPA and state leaders will identify specific issues the initiative might address, the benefits the PPGs already offer, and possible new incentives that would make PPGs more attractive to states.

We hope states representing a range of current PPG usage will participate and explore ways they can get more value from their PPGs, and that states not now combining their grants in PPGs will consider doing so as part of this effort.

The Maximizing PPGs initiative puts an unprecedented spotlight on PPGs and presents a unique opportunity for states interested in trying new approaches.

EPA's top leadership has made a firm commitment to ensuring the success of this effort.

Through this initiative, EPA will work with volunteer states to: Address real or perceived barriers to PPGs that are within EPA's purview; Promptly elevate and carefully consider policy issues and, wherever possible, resolve them in favor of providing flexibility; Test ways to accommodate multi-media projects and alternative priorities and approaches in accountability and management systems; Create "safe havens" if needed to test promising new approaches; Develop other incentives to make PPGs more valuable to states; and use the lessons learned to inform EPA's policy decisions, make adjustments as needed to management and accountability systems, and develop practical "how-to" information that will help other states in the future.

Funding Priority - Fiscal Year 2009: The Agency's ongoing goals for the PPG program are to: (1) strengthen partnerships between EPA, the state, tribes, and interstate agencies through joint planning and priority setting to more effectively deploy resources; (2) provide states, tribes, and interstate agencies with the flexibility to direct resources where they are needed most to address environmental and public health priorities; (3) link program activities more effectively with environmental and public health goals and environmental outcomes; (4) foster implementation of innovative approaches such as pollution prevention, ecosystem management, and community-based environmental protection strategies; and (5) providesavingsbystreamliningadministrative requirements.

To help advance these goals, the Agency will continue its Maximizing PPGs initiative for FY 2009.

EPA and state leaders will identify specific issues the initiative might address, the benefits the PPGs already offer, and possible new incentives that would make PPGs more attractive to states.

We hope states representing a range of current PPG usage will participate and explore ways they can get more value from their PPGs, and that states not now combining their grants in PPGs will consider doing so as part of this effort.

The Maximizing PPGs initiative puts an unprecedented spotlight on PPGs and presents a unique opportunity for states interested in trying new approaches.

EPA's top leadership has made a firm commitment to ensuring the success of this effort.

Through this initiative, EPA will work with volunteer states to: Address real or perceived barriers to PPGs that are within EPA's purview; Promptly elevate and carefully consider policy issues and, wherever possible, resolve them in favor of providing flexibility; Test ways to accommodate multi-media projects and alternative priorities and approaches in accountability and management systems; Create "safe havens" if needed to test promising new approaches; Develop other incentives to make PPGs more valuable to states; and use the lessons learned to inform EPA's policy decisions, make adjustments as needed to management and accountability systems, and develop practical "how-to" information that will help other states in the future.

Examples of Funded Projects

(1) Performance Partnership Grant combines funds from ten categorical grant programs to implement the Commonwealth's major operating environmental programs for clean air, clean water, drinking water, hazardous waste, and many others; (2) Grant taps funding from media programs combined in the PPG to fund pollution prevention activities; (3) Performance Partnership Grant combines funds from three pesticides programs to improve state implementation; (4) Grant combines four grants to develop and implement a variety of environmental programs; and (5) Grant negotiates with the regional office to use unexpended prior year funds for special projects to meet state priorities.


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 - See Appendix IV of the Catalog for EPA Regional Office contacts.


Program Accomplishments

PPGs have allowed states to take advantage of administrative and program efficiencies and innovations to achieve greater environmental and program results. States and tribes have used PPGs to address critical emergencies and unplanned events (for example, responses to hurricanes Rita and Katrina). They have used PPG flexibility to overcome periodic budget needs or high program demands in specific programs. States and tribes have used PPGs to implement multi-program initiatives and innovations that impact many environmental programs. They also have taken advantage of streamlined administrative procedures to make grant processes more efficient. PPGs have allowed tribes to develop and implement environmental programs in situations where it would have been more difficult using categorical grants. Agencies may request to receive their categorical grant funds in a PPG. Nearly all PPG applicants receive a grant, since they generally fund ongoing environmental programs. The total number of PPGs in effect FY 2007 was 172, including 43 to state environmental agencies; 24 to state agricultural agencies; and 105 to tribal agencies.

Uses and Use Restrictions

PPGs are a type of modified block grant, where recipients may combine funds from categorical grants to accomplish their joint and several purposes, so long as recipients meet program requirements for each categorical grant combined into the PPG.

The 20 categorical grants eligible for PPGs are a mixture of continuing program grants and competitive project grants.

Eligible recipients can combine two or more of the following 20 categorical grants programs identified in EPA's FY 2007 state and Tribal Assistance Grants (STAG) appropriation into a PPG: (1) Air Pollution Control (Clean Air Act (CAA) Section 105); (2) Water Pollution Control (Clean Water Act (CWA) Section 106); (3) Nonpoint Source Management (CWA Section 319); (4) Water Quality Cooperative Agreements (CWA Section 104(b)(3)); (5) Wetlands Program Development (CWA Section 104(b)(3)); (6) Public Water System Supervision (Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) Sections 1443(a) and 1451(a)(3)); (7) Underground Water Source Protection (SDWA Section 1443(b)); (8) Hazardous Waste Management (Solid Waste Disposal Act, Section 3011(a)); (9) Underground Storage Tank (Solid Waste Disposal Act, Section 2007(f)(2)); (10) Radon Assessment and Mitigation (Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) Section 306); (11) Lead-based Paint Activities (TSCA Section 404(g)); (12) Toxic Substances compliance monitoring (TSCA Section 28); (13) Pollution Prevention Incentives for states (Pollution Prevention Act (PPA) Section 6605); (14) Pesticide Cooperative Enforcement (Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) Section 23(a)(1); (15) Pesticides and program implementation (FIFRA Section 23(a)(1)); (16) Pesticide Applicator Certification and Training (FIFRA Section 23 (a)(2)); (17) Environmental Information Network Exchange Grants (Consolidated Appropriations Resolution for the Departments of Veterans Affairs, Housing and Urban Development, and Independent Agencies of 2003, Public Law 108-7; Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2004, Public Law 108-199); (18) Brownfields state and Tribal Response Program Grants (Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act of 1980 (CERCLA), Section 128(a), as amended; Public Law 107-118; Small Business Liability Relief and Brownfields Revitalization Act); (19) Capacity Building Grants and Cooperative Agreements for states and Tribes (CWA, Section 104; FIFRA, Section 20; CAA, Section 103; Solid Waste Disposal Act, Section 8001; SDWA, Section 1442; TSCA, Section 10; Marine Protection, Research and Sanctuaries Act, Section 203; CERCLA, Section 311; National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), Section 102(2)(F) (for international awards); and the Indian Environmental General Assistance Program Act); and (20) General Assistance Grants to Indian Tribes (Indian Environmental General Assistance Program Act of 1992) - only eligible tribes can propose to include these funds in a PPG application.

Recipients may use PPGs to fund activities that are within the cumulative eligibilities of the 20 categorical grants programs listed above for which they are eligible.

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.



Eligibility Requirements

Applicant Eligibility

All states, interstate agencies, U.S.

territories, and federally recognized Indian tribes eligible to receive more than one of the 20 categorical grants program referred to in "Uses and Use Restrictions" above are eligible to apply for PPGs.

Any duly authorized state or tribal entity that currently receives or is eligible to receive EPA categorical program grants may request a PPG for the funds it administers.

This may include agencies other than environmental agencies (for example, agricultural and health agencies), where authorized by state or tribal law.

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

States, U.S. territories, federally recognized Indian tribal governments, and interstate agencies.

Credentials/Documentation

All recipients are agencies of State, local, tribal, or territorial governments. All documentation requirements for recipients are presented at 40 CFR Part 31, "Uniform Administrative Requirements for Grants and Cooperative Agreements to State and Local Governments," and 40 CFR Part 35, "State and Local Assistance."

Aplication and Award Process

Preapplication Coordination

Applicants interested in pursuing PPGs should coordinate with their appropriate EPA Regional Office to develop a PPG through joint negotiations.

(See Appendix IV of the Catalog.) Regarding pre-application/pre-proposal assistance with respect to competitive funding opportunities under this program description, EPA will generally specify the nature of the pre-application/pre-proposal assistance, if any, that will be available to applicants in the competitive announcement.

For additional information, contact the individual(s) listed as "Information Contacts" or see Appendix IV of the Catalog.

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

Requests for applications should be made to the appropriate EPA Regional Grants Management Office. Applicants will negotiate the content of their PPG with their EPA Regional Office and submit an application for the PPG based on these negotiations. Applicants for PPGs must submit an "Application for Federal Assistance: State and Local Non-Construction Programs," (Standard Form 424), including the required supporting documents. Applicants may be able to use http://www.grants.gov to electronically apply for certain grant opportunities under this CFDA.

Award Procedures

Grant applications are reviewed by the appropriate EPA Regional Office, and if approved, awarded by the Regional Administrator. 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. After the applicant is chosen for the competitive award, the applicant will work with the EPA regional office to add those competitive grant funds to the PPG. The workplan and supporting documentation that were the basis of the competitive award also will be added to the PPG.

Deadlines

Applications are due 60 days prior to the beginning of the budget period.

Authorization

Omnibus Consolidated Rescissions and Appropriations Act of 1996, Public Law 104-134; Departments of Veterans Affairs, Housing and Urban Development, and Independent Agencies Appropriations Act of 1998, Public Law 105-65.

Range of Approval/Disapproval Time

Approximately 60 days.

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

None.

Assistance Considerations

Formula and Matching Requirements

Major portions of the PPGs are by statutory formula. The allocation for a PPG consists of the cumulative allocations for the categorical grants included in the PPG. Recipients should calculate a single, composite minimum cost share (based on the match or maintenance of effort requirements of the categorical grants included in the PPG) for each of their PPGs. To calculate the minimum cost share for a PPG, start with the amount of Federal dollars from each program (source of funds) going into the PPG. The minimum required cost share for each portion is determined by identifying the cost share requirements of the relevant categorical grant program (based on the source of funds). The minimum recipient cost share for the PPG is the sum of the minimum cost shares of the contributed categorical grants. Tribal governments and intertribal consortia may be eligible for match requirement waivers based on demonstrated hardship. The determination of eligibility will be completed by the Regional Administrator and will be based on socio-economic criteria.

Length and Time Phasing of Assistance

The terms of the grant shall be determined during pre-application negotiations and at the time of the award. Applicants may choose to submit annual or multi-year work plans and project periods. Budget periods will be for 12 months with the applicant having the flexibility to select, in consultation with the Regional Administrator, the specific start and end date for the budget period. Grant awards are made after review and approval of the application. Grantees are reimbursed for actual expenses based on submissions in financial status reports.

Post Assistance Requirements

Reports

Applicants must provide reports and conduct joint evaluations in accordance with 40 CFR Part 31 and 40 CFR Part 35, Subparts A and B.

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 for three years from the date of submission of the annual financial status report. If questions remain, such as those raised as a result of audit, related records should be retained until the matter is completely resolved.

Financial Information

Account Identification

68-0103-0-1-304.

Obigations

FY 07 $372,688,500; FY 08 est. $392,000,000; and FY 09 est $411,000,000.

Range and Average of Financial Assistance

There is no low-end limit for PPG awards to tribes. EPA may make awards as small as two programs and thousands of dollars to tribes. EPA may award PPGs that combine up to 19 categorical grants to states. PPGs for larger states exceed $10 million. In FY 2007, state PPGs generally contained six or seven categorical grants, with award amounts averaging around $5 million.

Regulations, Guidelines, and Literature

40 CFR Part 35 Subparts A and B; 40 CFR Part 31, "Uniform Administrative Requirements for Grants and Cooperative Agreements to State and Local Governments."

Information Contacts

Regional or Local Office

See Appendix IV of the Catalog for EPA Regional Office contacts.

Headquarters Office

States - Michael Osinski, Program Manager, National Environmental Performance Partnership System, (202) 564-3792; Fax: (202) 501-1545; E-mail: osinski.michael@epa.gov. Tribes - Office of Water, American Indian Environmental Office; Carol Jorgenson, Director; (202) 564-0303; Fax: (202) 564-0298; E-mail: jorgenson.carol@epa.gov. States - Office of the Administrator, Office of Congressional and Intergovernmental Relations, Mail Code: 1301A, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., Washington, DC 20460. Tribes - Office of Water, Mail Code: 4104M, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., Washington, DC 20460.

Criteria for Selecting Proposals

Applicants must meet selection criteria for the categorical grants to be combined in the PPG. The evaluation and selection criteria for competitive awards under this CFDA description will be described in the competitive announcement.



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