Surveys, Studies, Investigations and Special Purpose Grants within the Office of the Administrator

(1) To support surveys, studies, investigations, and special purpose assistance associated with air quality, acid deposition, drinking water, water quality, hazardous waste, toxic substances, and pesticides; (2) to identify, develop, and demonstrate necessary pollution control techniques; (3) to prevent,
reduce, and eliminate pollution; (4) to evaluate the economic and social consequences of alternative strategies and mechanisms for use by those in economic, social, governmental, and environmental management positions; and (5) to promote collaboration on projects and activities within the states and enable wider and more coordinated state input on national environmental issues.

Funding Priority - Fiscal Year 2008: Priorities include support for environmental health information and analysis to state legislatures; support to build state capacity to reduce environmental hazards that may affect health and the environment; support of environmental education training; support to promote and enhance state collaboration by focusing on communication and the sharing of environmental information among states; support to detail environmental outcome oriented indicators, measures, and goals that promote innovative environmental protection; and support to increase efficiency in the state environmental protection programs that results in cost-effective, sustainable environmental protection.

Funding Priority - Fiscal Year 2009: Priorities continue to include support for environmental health information and analysis to state legislatures; support to build state capacity to reduce environmental hazards that may affect health and the environment; support of environmental education training; support to promote and enhance state collaboration by focusing on communication and the sharing of environmental information among states; support to detail environmental outcome oriented indicators, measures, and goals that promote innovative environmental protection; and support to increase efficiency in the state environmental protection programs that results in cost-effective, sustainable environmental protection.
Related Programs

Examples of Funded Projects

EPA has funded projects that: (1) Strengthen State Capacity to Reduce and Manage Mercury in the Environment; (2) build State capacity to improve results-based environmental management and help States share information on best practices; (3) support State efforts to deliver comprehensive environmental compliance assistance to small local governments; (4) assist State efforts to more accurately manage expenditures for water quality programs; (5) To utilize a broad scope of work to include research, studies, demonstrations, training and professional development in order to promote active state involvement in the coordination of Federal/State efforts to reduce and eliminate pollution.


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.



Program Accomplishments

The Agency anticipates making one new award under this CFDA in Fiscal Year 2008. Although there were no new applications received and no new awards made during Fiscal Year 2007, the program accomplishments of ongoing grants were: (1) "Building of state capacity to improve results based management" -- The grant recipient developed 15 pilot projects to help States refine and expand their strategic planning efforts to focus on lessons learned with an eye towards better integration of multi-media approaches that achieve quantifiable environmental outcomes. Some states focused their pilots on the development of state priorities, multi-state priorities, and/or joint planning with EPA, while others worked on the alignment of State, regional and national planning processes. Information and experiences from the pilots will be used to evaluate progress and identify additional improvements. These pilots are ongoing. (2) Mercury Abatement helped States to educate and engage key public and private sector leaders on the actions taken to reduce and manage mercury in the environment. Grantee developed and published a mercury compendium of State Mercury Activities and worked with States and EPA to implement a partnership to reduce mercury in the environment. Developed and published an information document on "Mercury Product Labeling." Also helped develop a National Voluntary Mercury Switch Removal Program.

Uses and Use Restrictions

Grants and cooperative agreements are available to support recipients' allowable direct costs incident to approved surveys, studies, investigations and special purpose assistance, plus allowable indirect costs, in accordance with established EPA policies and regulations.

Funding awarded for research does not include research within the purview of EPA's Office of Research and Development.

Funds awarded under Section 311(b)(3) of CERCLA must be used for projects relating to innovative or alternative treatment technologies that may be utilized in response actions to achieve more permanent protection of human health and welfare and the environment.

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

Assistance under this program is generally available to State agencies, territories, the District of Columbia, Indian Tribes, and possessions of the U.S.

Assistance is also available to public and private universities and colleges, hospitals, laboratories, and other public or private nonprofit institutions.

Nonprofit organizations described in Section 501(c)(4) of the Internal Revenue Code that engage in lobbying activities as defined in Section 3 of the Lobbying Disclosure Act of 1995 are not eligible to apply.

For profit organizations are generally not eligible for funding.

Some of EPA's statutes may limit assistance to specific types of interested applications.

See "Authorization" listed above.

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

State agencies and local governments, U.S. territories and possessions, Indian Tribes, universities and colleges, hospitals, laboratories, and other public and private nonprofit institutions.

Credentials/Documentation

Documentation of nonprofit status may be required. Applicants may be requested to demonstrate they have appropriate background, academic training, experience in the field, and necessary equipment to carry out projects. Office of the Administrator may ask applicants or principal investigators to provide curriculum vitae and relevant publications.

Aplication and Award Process

Preapplication Coordination

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

The standard application forms as furnished by the Federal agency and required by OMB Circular No. A-102 and A-110 must be used for this program. EPA requires final applications to be made on Standard Form 424, "Application for Federal Assistance." Requests for application kits must be submitted to the Environmental Protection Agency, Grants and Interagency Agreements Management Division, (3903R), Washington, DC 20460 or through the appropriate EPA Regional Office listed in Appendix IV of the Catalog. Additional information on the EPA grant package can be found at: http://www.epa.gov/ogd/grants/how_to_apply.htm. For competitive award, the Requests for Initial Proposals or Requests for Applications will specify application procedures. 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.

Deadlines

Deadlines for competitive awards will be specified in Request for Applications or Request for Initial Proposals.

Authorization

Clean Water Act, Section 104; Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act, Section 20; Clean Air Act, Section 103; Solid Waste Disposal Act, Section 8001; Safe Drinking Water Act, Section 1442; Toxic Substances Control Act, Section 10; Marine Protection, Research, and Sanctuaries Act, Section 203; Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA), Section 311; National Environmental Policy Act, Section 102(2)(F), for international awards.

Range of Approval/Disapproval Time

Approximately 180 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. Generally, EPA incrementally funds grants and cooperative agreements for surveys, studies, and investigations. Approval of subsequent funding increments is dependent on satisfactory project progress, continued relevance of the project to the Office of the Administrator's program priorities, and the availability of funds.

Assistance Considerations

Formula and Matching Requirements

This program has no statutory formula. EPA's Appropriation Act requires that applicants submitting unsolicited research grant proposals share in the cost of conducting research. The amount of the cost share will be based on the mutuality of interest between the Government and the applicant. This requirement cannot be waived by EPA. In addition, CERCLA Section 311(b)(3) requires that "to the maximum extent possible," EPA enter into an appropriate cost-sharing arrangement with recipients of grants and cooperative agreements relating to innovative and alternative treatment technologies. EPA may waive the Section 311(b)(3) cost-sharing requirement in appropriate cases. Matching fund requirements may be established in program guidance or in the terms of competitive solicitations.

Length and Time Phasing of Assistance

EPA normally funds grants and cooperative agreements on a 12-month basis. However, the Office of the Administrator can negotiate the project period with each applicant based on project requirements. EPA limits project periods to 5 years. Grants and cooperative agreements may be incrementally funded or fully funded. This determination is made by the EPA.

Post Assistance Requirements

Reports

EPA includes reporting requirements for grants and cooperative agreements in the terms and conditions of the agreements.

Agreements may require quarterly, interim, and final progress reports, and financial, equipment, and invention reports.

Reporting requirements are also identified in EPA's grant regulations 40 CFR Parts 30 and 31.

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

The record retention requirements of 40 CFR Part 30 (nonprofits and institutions of higher education) or 40 CFR Part 31 (governmental units) are applicable depending upon the identity of the recipient. Recipients must keep financial records, including all documents supporting entries on accounting records which support substantial changes to the grant, available to personnel authorized to examine EPA recipients' grants and cooperative agreement records. Recipient must maintain all records for a period of three (3) years from the date of submission of final expenditures reports. If questions, such as those raised as a result of audits remain following the 3-year period, recipients must retain records until the matter is fully resolved.

Financial Information

Account Identification

68-1810-0-1-304.

Obigations

FY 07 $472,992; FY 08 est. $500,000; and FY 09 est. $500,000.

Range and Average of Financial Assistance

Range - $500 to $500,000 per grant. Average amount of award - approximately $150,000 per grant.

Regulations, Guidelines, and Literature

Surveys, studies, and investigations grants and cooperative agreements are subject to EPA general grant regulations (40 CFR Parts 30, "Grants and Agreements with Institutions of Higher Education, Hospitals, and Other Non-Profit Organizations," and 40 CFR Part 31, "Uniform Administrative Requirements for Grants and Cooperative Agreements to State and Local Governments"). Costs will be determined in accordance with OMB Circular A-87 for State and local governments and Indian Tribes, OMB Circular No. A-21 for educational institutions, OMB Circular No. A-122 for nonprofit institutions, and FAR Part 31 for "for profit" entities.

Information Contacts

Regional or Local Office

None.

Headquarters Office

For information on grant applications and procedures, contact: Environmental Protection Agency, Grants and Interagency Agreements Management Division, (3903R), 1200 Pennsylvania Ave., N.W., Washington, DC 20460. For program information contact: Matthew Peters, Office of the Administrator, E-mail: Peters.Matthew@epamail.epa.gov; Telephone: (202) 564-0222; Fax: (202) 501-1534.

Criteria for Selecting Proposals

The evaluation and selection criteria for competitive awards under this CFDA description will be described in the competitive announcement. Non-competitive proposals are judged for: (a) technical merit in terms of: (1) strengths and weaknesses of the project, (2) adequacy of overall project design, (3) competency of proposed staff, (4) suitability of applicant's available resources, (5) appropriateness of the proposed project period and budget, and (6) probability that the project will accomplish stated objectives; and, for (b) program interest in terms of: (1) the need for the proposed project, and (2) relationship to program objectives.



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