State Access to the Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund

To encourage greater State participation in response to actual or threatened discharges of oil.

Agency - Department of Homeland Security

The Department of Homeland Security has three primary missions: Prevent terrorist attacks within the United States, reduce America's vulnerability to terrorism and minimize the damage from potential attacks and natural disasters.

Website Address

Program Accomplishments


Uses and Use Restrictions

Funds are to be used for immediate removal action costs that are directly related to a specific incident which occurs after August 18, 1990.

Removal costs must generally be incurred at the site or in support of site removal activities (e.g., salary costs for State officials actually engaged in the removal actions, transportation costs for transporting persons and materials to the site, costs of equipment usage and consumable, contract costs, and administrative costs for preparing reports and documenting actions which occurred at the site).

Limited to $250,000 per incident.

Removal actions must be consistent with the National Contingency Plan (40 CFR 300) and must be approved by the cognizant Coast Guard or Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Federal On-Scene Coordinator (FOSC).

Remedial actions and restorations are ineligible.

Eligibility Requirements

Applicant Eligibility

The Governor (or his or her designated State official) of any State including Puerto Rico, Guam, American Samoa, U.S.

Virgin Islands, Northern Marianas, and any other U.S.

territory or possession may apply for financial assistance.

Beneficiary Eligibility

State Governors.


Applicant must either be the Governor of a State or have on file at the NPFC a letter signed by the Governor designating the applicant to be a State official authorized to make a request. The application must establish: (1) the incident is eligible for immediate removal under the Clean Water Act, as amended by OPA 90, (2) the substance discharged or threatening discharge is oil, (3) the incident occurred after August 18, 1990, (4) the aggregate amount of the request is equal to or less than $250,000, (5) the proposed removal actions are consistent with the NCP (including 40 CFR 300,305(c)'s requirement that a reasonable effort is made to have the discharger voluntarily and promptly perform removal actions), (6) the proposed level of response, proposed actions, and money requested are appropriate for the circumstances, and (7) the State has the means to complete the immediate removal. Detailed application requirements are included in publication entitled Technical Operating Procedures for State Access under Section 1012(d) of OPA 90 (NPFCINST 16451.1).

Aplication and Award Process

Preapplication Coordination

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

Application is initiated when the Governor or his or her designated State official contacts the cognizant Federal On-Scene Coordinator (FOSC) and requests State access to the Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund (OSLTF, or "the Fund") under 33 CFR 133. This initial request may be made verbally. If the FOSC agrees that the incident is eligible for State Access funding and that State access to the Fund is the best method for addressing the incident, the FOSC will seek obligation of the Fund from the National Pollution Funds Center (NPFC). Since the approval of a request establishes a Cooperative Agreement between the Coast Guard and the State, the provisions of 49 CFR 18 apply to the State Access process.

Award Procedures

The National Pollution Funds Center will notify the State via telephone and hard copy of the award approval and amount.




Oil Pollution Act of 1990, Public Law 101-380, Section 1012(d)(1).

Range of Approval/Disapproval Time

Due to the emergency nature of oil discharge incidents, an approval or disapproval decision will be made and communicated to the State as expeditiously as possible (considering the nature and scope of the incident and other operations) following receipt of the request.





Assistance Considerations

Formula and Matching Requirements


Length and Time Phasing of Assistance


Post Assistance Requirements


The State must complete a source (of oil discharge) and responsibility party investigation and forward it to the Coast Guard National Pollution Funds Center (NPFC) and the FOSC as soon as possible.

The NPFC and the FOSC must be informed within 48 hours following the completion of immediate removal efforts.

An Incident Report, a detailed documentation of all eligible costs incurred during the immediate removal, and forms and certifications prescribed 49 CFR 18, 20, 29 and 90 are also required by the Coast Guard.

All required forms, certifications, and other documentation are expected within 30 days following the completion of immediate removal efforts.

Payment is not made until all materials are received and reviewed.

The Coast Guard may deobligate the Fund for payment if all materials are not received within 90 days following the completion of immediate removal efforts.

An amplifying Technical Operating Procedures publication (NPFCINST 16451.1) has been distributed to the States.


In accordance with the provisions of OMB Circular A-133 (Revised, June 27, 2003), "Audits of States, Local Governments, and Nonprofit Organizations," nonfederal entities that expend financial assistance of $500,000 or more in Federal awards (or receive property, or a combination of both, within the fiscal year) 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 A-133. These audits are due to the cognizant Federal agency, submitted through the Federal Audit Clearinghouse, not later than 9 months after the end of the grantees fiscal year.


Due to the need to recover removal costs from responsible parties and the possibility of protracted litigation that may be associated with specific oil discharge removal incidents, State records must be kept for 10 years following submission of the final documents to the Coast Guard, or until the completion of litigation for a specific case, whichever is longer.

Financial Information

Account Identification



(Cooperative Agreements) FY 07 $0; FY 08 est not available; and FY 09 est not available.

Range and Average of Financial Assistance

States: $250,000 maximum per oil discharge incident.

Regulations, Guidelines, and Literature

33 CFR 133, 40 CFR 300, 49 CFR 18, 20, 29, and 90, and Technical Operating Procedures for State Access to OSLTF (NPFCINST 16451.1).

Information Contacts

Regional or Local Office


Headquarters Office

Department of Homeland Security 245 Murray Drive, SW., Washington, DC 20528. Telephone: (202) 494-9118.

Criteria for Selecting Proposals

Proposed immediate removal actions must be eligible under the Oil Pollution Act of 1990 (Public Law 101-380), consistent with the National Contingency Plan (40 CFR 300), appropriate for the amount requested, and within the capability of the State to perform.

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