Environmental Policy and Innovation Grants

(1) To support analyses, studies, evaluations, workshops, conferences, and demonstration projects that lead to reduced pollutants generated and conservation of natural resources; (2) to improve economic information and analytic methods to support studies, surveys, analyses, evaluations, conferences,
workshops, and demonstration projects on the benefits, costs, and impacts of environmental programs; and (3) to improve economic information and analytic methods to support studies, surveys, analyses, evaluations, conferences, workshops, and demonstration projects of incentive-based and voluntary environmental management strategies and mechanisms; and (4) to support research to explore and develop strategies and mechanisms for those in the economic, social, governmental, and environmental arenas to use in environmental management decisions.

Funding Priority - Fiscal Year 2008: Pending budget decisions, the funding priorities for this program may include continued support for innovative projects related to exploring, testing, or implementing smart growth policies and other environmentally preferable approaches to development.

In the area of economic research, pending budget decisions, there will be a solicitation focused on economic workshops and an economic research solicitation which may focus on methods to improve capacity to measure economic value of health and ecological benefits.

The latter will be supported under the Economics and Decision Sciences Program that prior to FY 2008 had been administered by EPA's Office of Research and Development, National Center for Environmental Research.

Effective in FY 2008, responsibility and resources for this program were transferred within EPA to the Office of Policy, Economics and Innovation.

Funding Priority - Fiscal Year 2009: Pending budget decisions, the funding priorities for this program may include continued support for innovative projects related to exploring, testing, or implementing smart growth policies and other environmentally preferable approaches to development.

In the area of economic research, pending budget decisions, there will be one or two solicitations focused on (1) methods to improve capacity to measure economic value of health and ecological benefits, or (2) use of market-based approaches to accomplish environmental management objectives.

These solicitations will be supported under the Economics and Decision Sciences Program that prior to FY 2008 had been administered by EPA's Office of Research and Development, National Center for Environmental Research.

Effective in FY 2008, responsibility and resources for this program were transferred within EPA to the Office of Policy, Economics and Innovation.
Related Programs

Examples of Funded Projects

Under 66.611, EPA has funded projects such as reviewing a city's municipal code; identifying barriers to smart growth and developing options to eliminate the specific barriers; integrating redevelopment solutions for brownfields for a particular State; sponsoring economic policy or economic methodology development workshops and conferences; supporting applied dissertations in environmental economics; and supporting high priority environmental economic research topics.

Details on economic projects funded under prior solicitations can be found at the webaddress: http://yosemite.epa.gov/ee/epa/eed.nsf/Webpages/Grants.html.


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 - EPA encourages potential applicants to communicate with the appropriate EPA Regional Office listed in Appendix IV of the Catalog, and the Headquarters program contacts listed below.


Program Accomplishments

Through managed competitions awarded in FY 05, assistance agreements were awarded to organizations to support the Agency's Smart Growth Program. Although there were no competitions in FY 06, examples of activities funded through incremental funding include development of guidelines for green, dense urban redevelopment, identification of barriers to smart growth and development of options to eliminate them, support for smart growth visioning and recognition programs, and co-sponsorship of a smart growth conference. In FY 07, examples of funded activities include identification of barriers to smarth growth and deveopment of options to eliminate them, support for smart growth visioning and recognition programs, and co-sponsorship of a smart growth conference. The ratio of applications received to those awarded is about 10:1 for the smart growth program. As in past years, grants supporting workshops and conferences related to economic research and analysis are expected to be awarded in FY 2008. The FY 2008 solicitation for workshops is expected to receive 20-30 applications, of which it is expected that 8-10 will be awarded funds in FY2008. The Economics and Decision Sciences research program in FY2007 completed selection of awards for two solicitations "Market Mechanisms and Incentives: Case Studies and Experimental Testbeds for New Environmental Trading Programs (2006)" totaling awards of $1,336,000 and "Methodological Advances in Benefit Transfer Methods (2006)" totaling awards of $592,000. There were three grants awarded for each of the two solicitations. The ratio of applications received to those awarded in the area of economic analysis and research is about 4:1. The research supported by this program helps to strengthen the quality and completeness of the scientific information used in preparing economic analyses. The program works to fill gaps in the quantification of the costs and benefits associated with environmental regulations and policies. As an example, one grant recipients listed the following accomplishments associated with a series of economic workshops funded under this program: For the 2007 Workshop, 324 researchers were invited, and 106 participated. We will continue to obtain feedback on the program and workshop in our effort to improve quality. We will also track the papers afterwards to gauge their success in publication. We have some data on successful progress toward publication of papers that were presented at prior workshops for years 2005 and 2006. Eleven papers were presented each year. Any given paper can easily take more than two years to get published, even if it is revised for the very first journal to which it was submitted. Of the eleven papers from the summer of 2006, three are already forthcoming or published in peer reviewed journals. In addition, three are being revised for resubmission. Of eleven papers presented at the 2005 Workshop, one is being revised for resubmission, and nine are forthcoming or published.

Uses and Use Restrictions

Grants and cooperative agreements are available to support recipients' allowable direct costs incident to approved Environmental Policy and Innovation 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 or 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 States and local governments, territories and possessions, foreign governments, international organizations, Indian Tribes, interstate organizations, intrastate organizations, and possessions of the U.S., including the District of Columbia, public and private universities and colleges, hospitals, laboratories, other public or private nonprofit institutions, and individuals.

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 applicants.

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.

National laboratories funded by Federal Agencies (Federally-Funded Research and Development Centers, "FFRDCs") may not apply.

FFRDC employees may cooperate or collaborate with eligible applicants within the limits imposed by applicable legislation and regulations.

They may participate in planning, conducting, and analyzing the research directed by the applicant, but may not direct projects on behalf of the applicant organization.

The institution, organization, or governance receiving the award may provide funds through its grant from the EPA to an FFRDC for research personnel, supplies, equipment, and other expenses directly related to the research.

However, salaries for permanent FFRDC employees may not be provided through this mechanism.

Federal Agencies may not apply.

Federal employees are not eligible to serve in a principal leadership role on a grant, and may not receive salaries or augment their Agency's appropriations in other ways through grants made by this program.

Beneficiary Eligibility

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

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. EPA may ask applicants or principle 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. 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 non-competitive awards, EPA will conduct an administrative evaluation to determine the adequacy of application in relation to grant regulations and to technical and program evaluation to determine the merit and relevance of the project. The Agency will then advise the applicant if funding is being considered. A final work plan will then be negotiated with the applicant. 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. For competitions administered as part of the Economic and Decision Sciences program, it is planned for OPEI to adhere to the policies and procedures followed previously by ORD, NCER when their office was responsible for administering the program. The details of this process are to be settled upon during FY2008 in conjunction with the transfer of personnel and resources associated with the EDS program as they move from ORD to OPEI.

Deadlines

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

Authorization

Clean Air Act, Section 103; Clean Water Act, Section 104; Solid Waste Disposal Act, Section 8001; Safe Drinking Water Act, Section 1441; Toxics Substances Control Act, Section 10; Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act, Section 20; Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA), Section 104(k)(6) and 311, as amended; and National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), Section 102(2)(F)

Range of Approval/Disapproval Time

Approximately 180 days for most competitive solicitations. For competitive solicitations administered under the Economic and Decision Sciences program, the time to notification is approximately 240 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 Environmental Policy and Innovation. Approval of subsequent funding increments is dependent on satisfactory project progress, continued relevance of the project to EPA's priorities, availability of funds, and Agency policy on the competitive grant process.

Assistance Considerations

Formula and Matching Requirements

This program has no statutory formula. CERCLA 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 311(b)(3) cost sharing requirement in appropriate cases. Matching requirements may be established in program guidance or the terms of competitive solicitations.

Length and Time Phasing of Assistance

EPA normally funds grants and cooperative agreements on a 12-month basis. However, EPA 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 or fully funded. This determination will be 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.

Specific reporting requirements are also identified in the 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 (non-profits and universities) 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 and to substantiate changes in grants, available to personnel authorized to examine EPA recipients grants and cooperative agreements records. Recipients must maintain all records until 3 years from the date of submission of final expenditure 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 completely resolved.

Financial Information

Account Identification

68-1810-0-1-304.

Obigations

OBLIGATIONS: For awards directed at smart growth issues, the following distributions and projections are - FY 07 total awarded through new awards and incremental funding: $618,500; FY 08 total expected to be awarded through new awards and incremental funding: $922,000; FY 09 projected new awards and incremental funding: $958,000. For awards directed at economic analysis and research topics, including funding provided under the Economic and Decision Sciences program, the following distributions and projections are - FY 07 total awarded through new awards and incremental funding: $2,179,000 (majority of funds supporting Economic and Decision Sciences program, in response to solicitations initiated when program managed by ORD, NCER during FY 2006-2007). FY 08 total expected to be awarded through new awards and incremental funding: $1,200,000 (of which $600,000 supporting Economics and Decision Sciences program). FY 09 projected new awards and incremental funding: $1,500,000 (of which $1,000,000 supporting Economics and Decision Sciences program)

Range and Average of Financial Assistance

For awards related to smart growth, the range is from $30,000 to $250,000, with an average of $90,000. For awards in the area of economics - related to Workshops: range is $20,000 - $200,000, with an average award of $75,000. Related to Research: range is $50,000-$1,000,000, with an average of $300,000. There were no earmarks included in FY 2007 or FY 2008. Do not anticipate any earmarks in FY 2009.

Regulations, Guidelines, and Literature

Environmental Policy and Innovation grants and cooperative agreements are subject to EPA's General Grant Regulations (40 CFR Part 30 and 40 CFR Part 31). Costs will be determined in accordance with OMB Circular No. 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 profit makers.

Information Contacts

Regional or Local Office

EPA encourages potential applicants to communicate with the appropriate EPA Regional Office listed in Appendix IV of the Catalog, and the Headquarters program contacts listed below.

Headquarters Office

For information on grant applications and procedures, contact: Environmental Protection Agency, Grants and Interagency Agreements Management Division, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., Mail Code: 3903R, Washington, DC 20460. For program information contact Pamela Stirling; Telephone: (202) 566-0949; Fax: (202) 566-3001; E-mail: stirling.pamela@epa.gov.

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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