Federal Stimulus Act-Newsletter3

Stimulus and Nonprofits, Vol. 3 – MNN’s ARRA Newsletter – May 11, 2009

Dear Nonprofit Leader,

I hope that you made good use of MNN’s  ARRA Newsletter, Volumes 1 and 2, you may want to reference these at www.massnonprofitnet.org. Each volume will include links to previous volumes for your reference. Today we present Volume 3 of our research on the opportunities for nonprofits to participate in the economic recovery of our county. Please let us know if is useful and how it can be made more so and please share it.

Thank you to The Boston Foundation for generously providing the financial support needed for this project.

Sincerely,

Dave Magnani,
Executive Director
617-330-1188

P.S.  Don’t forget to register for Nonprofit Awareness Day and Excellence Award Ceremony on June 8

To view Stimulus and Nonprofits, Volume 1 and 2 or for more information on the Massachusetts Nonprofit Network, please visit our website.

If this edition has been forwarded to you and you would like to receive future volumes please email us your name and organization.

Where we are right now.

To date, Massachusetts has been allocated approximately $2.93 billion out of the estimated $8.7 billion expected to be received by the federal government under theAmerican Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA). Additionally, there are more than 8,300 requests for the approximately $2 billion to be spent on shovel-ready projects that include bridge and road work and the renovation of municipal buildings. The state has begun receiving funding for various grants it has applied for and state agencies are making announcements as to how they will be dispersing those funds.  Funding going directly to municipalities via existing formulas has started to come in as well (see the tables included below). As you know, the chief aim of ARRA is to stimulate the economy in the short term (while providing investments for the long term) and as such, there is a rush to have receiving entities spend as much of the funding as soon as possible.

We urge you to continue to position your organization by making contact with your local/municipal government, building relationships with elected officials who can advocate for your organization’s work, and collaborating with other organizations doing similar work as you. Again, keep in mind that the goals of the various funding streams are very specific, so carefully review options to ensure that your organization can meet the need of the funding opportunity. Alternatively, seek out opportunities to provide one or more components of a grant for which another nonprofit is applying. The networking opportunities provided by MNN may provide you with an opportunity to showcase your organization’s core mission, expertise and skills at serving a particular population or region, which might be of interest to other nonprofits applying for funding.

This newsletter seeks to provide new information and as such, categories without new announcements or information have not been included. Please refer back to previous newsletters in order to have a comprehensive understanding of all the funding available in your category of interest.

If there is information that is not contained in this or previous newsletters which you would like us to know and/or to transmit to others, please email us at info@massnonprofitnet.org.

Reminder of Upcoming ARRA Deadlines

Please find below the upcoming deadlines for funding opportunities we alerted you to in our past newsletters.

  • June 2, 2009 – Deadline for Capital Improvement Program (CIP) for Community Health Centers
  • June 25, 2009 – Deadline for Energy Efficiency and Conservation competitive grant program.
  • Sept. 1, 2009 – Applications due for round 2 of the Federal Neighborhood Stabilization Program (NSP).
  • Sept. 1, 2009 – Deadline for competitive grant applications to buy and rehabilitate foreclosed properties and other projects to stabilize neighborhoods and create affordable housing.

Continued Guidance for Accessing Funding

  • Continue to read over information on grants with an eye towards how you might fill the core function (a list of important websites is attached). Nonprofits should spend time reviewing the principal federal website for ARRA here as well as the Massachusetts ARRA website here. The federal Grants Management System website is extremely useful for finding federal grant information. Specifically, here you can search for grants that have been funded by ARRA. The website provides deadlines and eligibility, as well as detailed descriptions of the programs. For direct contracts or federal business opportunities nonprofits should search here.
  • If you are fairly certain that you will be applying for a federal grant, it is highly recommended that you complete as much of the pre-application work as soon as possible. The steps in this process normally – without the increased demand caused by ARRA – can take up to a couple of weeks. For example, applicants will require a Data Universal Number (DUNS number). Most large organizations, independent libraries, colleges and research universities already have DUNS numbers. Once a DUNS number is obtained, organizations need to use that number to register with the Central Contractor Registration (CCR) as well as set up an Authorized Organization Representative (AOR), a process designed to safeguard your organization from individuals who may attempt to submit grant application packages without permission. The following link can walk you through the entire pre-application process here.
  • Small and midsized nonprofits should consider ways to collaborate with each other and use their local connections and creativity to take advantage of mission-related opportunities. Nonprofits in Massachusetts may wish to consider ways in which they might be able to apply a particular expertise or skill to a region of the state without similar resources. For example, nonprofits that provide job training services should consider areas of the state that have experienced unprecedented unemployment and corresponding demand for job training services and where existing providers are at capacity or do not have breath of services needed.
  • Nonprofits should continue to reach out to local officials. As was outlined in our previous newsletter, a sizable portion of ARRA funding will be administered directly by municipal leaders. Because some of the federal funds flowing to states and local governments formally will require receiving governments to have community partners, it is wise to make sure that these officials understand ways in which you can help them to deliver critical services.

Health and Human Services

Competitive Grants

Capital Improvements Program (CIP) for Community Health Centers
ARRA provides $1.5 billion to support construction, renovation and equipment, including health information technology systems, in health centers and health center controlled networks. ARRA specifies that funds are to be used for “grants to health centers authorized under section 330 of the Public Health Services (PHS) Act” (i.e., only funded Health Center Program grantee health centers). Health center grantees requesting CIP grants must demonstrate how their proposal will lead to improvements in access to health services for underserved populations and create health center and construction-related jobs.  CIP grants are one-time awards and there is no ongoing support of CIP grant activities after the end of the 2-year project/budget period. The deadline for the initial application is June 2, 2009. See Recovery Act Grants Health Center Program for more information.

NIH
As was previously mentioned in our last two newsletters, there is a lot of new research funding that NIH is awarding.  The likely awardees are medical schools and hospitals and other research organizations. To the extent that any of the research will involve the use of data or provision of services (“subjects”) in a community setting, health centers and/or other community based organizations might have some opportunity for funding.

Wellness and Prevention
ARRA provides $700 million to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for evidence-based clinical and community-based prevention and wellness strategies and to implement strategies to control infections in healthcare settings ($50 million nationally).  These funds will be awarded under competitive grants. In response to the Act, CDC has established the Economic Stimulus Response Team (ESRT), a cross-disciplinary group of staff, to assist in preparing the agency’s strategy and response to the stimulus effort. Kathleen Toomey, MD, MPH, has been appointed to lead the effort by CDC. The ERST will recommend which activities will be funded, ensure all Congressional requirements will be met and make certain CDC has the resources and infrastructure necessary to support the endeavor. For more information.

Health IT
The ARRA lays the foundation for national health information technology (HIT) standards, provides certain incentives for the adoption and use of HIT by hospitals and health care providers, and addresses privacy and information security. The administration’s goal is to implement systems of operating electronic health (medical) records (EMR or EHR) by all hospitals, physicians and other providers and for establishing “interoperability” so that info in one hospital system’s EHR is accessible for providers anywhere in the country.  ARRA allocates $17 billion for this purpose by altering Medicare and Medicaid reimbursement methodologies beginning in 2011. Health care providers such as doctors and hospitals would be reimbursed by higher Medicare and Medicaid payments if they put the systems in place by 2011. Doctors can receive up to $60,000 and hospitals up to $11 million. If they don’t switch, they could see their Medicare and Medicaid dollars decline. Massachusetts has been a pioneer in this field with an effort that began in August 2008 to achieve the same outcome.  Specific information is expected to be forthcoming from the Massachusetts e-Health Institute located within the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative which has been spearheading the effort.

Children and Families

Competitive Grants
The Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) is offeringInternet Crimes Against Children Research Grants, the purpose of which is to fund research that will expand our understanding of the scope and prevalence of technology and internet-facilitated crimes against children. Funded projects should aim to produce information that will assist state and local law enforcement and prosecutors working internet or technology-facilitated crimes against children cases, as well as policymakers who rely on the evidence base to make decisions.

Public agencies, non-profits, and private organizations are all eligible to apply. As described in our previous newsletter, organizations must first obtain a DUNS number to apply for this grant. If you haven’t already done so, you can register yourself or your organization here. Applications for this grant are due by 12pm on May 14, 2009. Click here to view the full grant announcement.

Labor and Workforce Development

Municipalities/Localities
Recently, the Patrick administration has begun to announce the allocation of workforce training funding in the Commonwealth stemming from federal recovery funds. On April 28th, Massachusetts announced more than $67 million from ARRA will be used to make immediate investments in job training and support services for dislocated workers, low-income youths and adults.The state announced that more than $4.9 million of this funding would be going to the Boston Private Industry Council and three One-Stop Career Centers in the City of Boston. Click here to view the April 28th press release.

On April 30th, Massachusetts announced more than $1.9 million in federal recovery funds for the Cape and Islands via the Cape and Islands Workforce Investment Board for the Career Opportunities centers in Falmouth, Hyannis, and Orleans.  Click here to view the April 30th press release.

On May 6th, Massachusetts announced more than $4.3 million in federal recovery funds for Central Massachusetts via the Central Massachusetts Regional Employment Board for the Workforce Central Career Center’s in Milford, Southbridge, and Worcester.  Click here to view the May 6th press release.

On May 7th, Massachusetts announced $4.6 million in federal recovery funds in theFall River area via the Bristol Workforce Investment Board for the one-stop career centers in Fall River, Taunton, and Attleboro. Click here to view the May 7th new article.

Competitive Grants
The Workforce Investment Act, mentioned in our last newsletter, also includes $750 million for competitive grants for worker training and placement in high growth and emerging industry sectors. Within this amount, $500 million is designated for worker training in energy efficiency and renewable energy industries as described in the Green Jobs Act of 2007. Priority for the balance of funds is given to projects that prepare workers for careers in the health care sector. These funds are available through June 30, 2010, provided that a local Workforce Investment Board (WIB) may award a contract to an institution of higher education or other eligible training provider if the local board determines that it would facilitate the training of multiple individuals in high-demand occupations. For more information on the WIA Competitive Training Grants, click here.

  • Right now, organizations should be talking to partners in the workforce system and demonstrate their training capacity and job placement skills.
  • States must submit their modified plans for funds by June 30, 2009. Those interested in Workforce Development should contact their local WIBs/one-stop career centers and State Dept. of Labor to help shape state plans for money.
  • To learn more about ARRA and Workforce Development, visit the Dept. of Labor’s Employment & Training Administration site here.

The EDA American Recovery Program
The Economic Development Administration (EDA) has appropriated $150,000,000 for the EDA American Recovery Program under the auspices of the Public Works and Economic Development Act (PWEDA) and is soliciting applications. Eligible applicants include a(n): (i) District Organization; (ii) Indian Tribe or a consortium of Indian Tribes; (iii) State, a city or other political subdivision of a State, including a special purpose unit of a State or local government engaged in economic or infrastructure development activities, or a consortium of political subdivisions; (iv) institution of higher education or a consortium of institutions of higher education; or (v) public or private non-profit organization or association acting in cooperation with officials of a political subdivision of a State.

EDA will give priority consideration to those applications that will significantly benefit regions “that have experienced sudden and severe economic dislocation and job loss due to corporate restructuring,” as stipulated under the Recovery Act. EDA provides financial assistance to distressed communities in both urban and rural regions. Such distress may exist in a variety of forms, including high levels of unemployment, low income levels, large concentrations of low-income families, significant declines in per capita income, large numbers (or high rates) of business failures, sudden major layoffs or plant closures, trade impacts, military base closures, natural or other major disasters, depletion of natural resources, reduced tax bases, or substantial loss of population because of the lack of employment opportunities.

The closing deadline for applications is June 30, 2010. For more information about the grant, eligibility, and funding, please visit here.

Clean Energy and Environment

State Agencies
On April 22, 2009, Governor Patrick issued a press release announcing the launch of the Green Communities Program, which will help municipalities across Massachusetts cut energy bills through greater efficiency and locally generated renewable power. The Green Communities Program is a component of Governor Patrick’s Massachusetts Recovery Plan, making information and technical assistance available for communities to help them prepare for and make the most of federal recovery funds targeted for energy investments.

Officials hope that the creation of the Green Communities Program will provide cities and towns with more tools in seeking federal recovery funds for energy efficiency programs. The Green Communities Program is now in the process of assigning four regional coordinators who will provide communities around the state with technical assistance on becoming Green Communities and on making choices about energy investments with federal funds.

To view the full press release, visit here.
For more information about the Green Communities Program, visit here.

Municipalities

Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant
As mentioned in our first newsletter, the US Department of Energy (DOE) has issued guidance for formula-based federal stimulus funding available to cities and towns under the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant (EECBG) Program. The purpose of the EECBG Program is to assist eligible entities in creating and implementing strategies to: reduce fossil fuel emissions in a manner that is environmentally sustainable and, to the maximum extent practicable, maximize benefits for local and regional communities; reduce the total energy use of the eligible entities; and improve energy efficiency in the building sector, the transportation sector, and other appropriate sectors.

The forty-two Massachusetts communities with more than 35,000 residents are eligible for direct funding from the US DOE. The MA Dept. of Energy Resources (DOER) will apply for and receive the funds from US DOE to distribute to communities with fewer than 35,000 residents. The amount of funding for these sub grants, and for DOER programming and assistance, is $14,752,100, of which 60% must be provided in sub grants. DOER is in the midst of developing a process to provide direct energy assistance to all communities while also providing an application process for the sub grants. The DOER plan for this process must be submitted to US DOE by May 25th. DOER will notify municipalities when there is more information available. If this would apply to your organization, make sure to speak with your local government about applying.

The funding for each community is based on a formula, and the Federal funds are left up to the state to determine how they are dispersed. Organizations should contact the State Energy Office to request information on Massachusetts’ plan for awarding sub grants under the EECBG program. Please contact the Green Communities Division with further questions: Mark Sylvia, mark.sylvia@state.ma.us; Meg Lusardi, meg.lusardi@state.ma.us; Jack Bevelaqua (forms), jack.bevelaqua@state.ma.us.

To view the DOER Funding Guidance Document of the EECBG Program and to see the predetermined funding amounts for communities larger than 35,000 residents, visithere

Education

Competitive Grants

Teacher Incentive Fund – (TIF)
On April 28, 2009, the Massachusetts Executive Office of Education released an updated fact sheet on state education funding, covering allocated funding to date. $200M  has been made available nationwide for local districts to support performance-based teacher and principal compensation systems in high-need schools. Local Educational Agencies (LEAs), including charter schools that are LEAs in their state, SEAs, or partnerships of (1) an LEA, an SEA, or both, and (2) at least one nonprofit organization may apply. Agencies with differentiated compensation systems already in place may apply for a TIF program grant to expand their programs so that they reach additional high-need school sites (the TIF program understands a high-need school to mean, among other things, a school with more than 30 percent of its enrollment from low income families) or to include teachers or administrators in high-need schools who are not participating in the current system. These compensation systems must consider gains in student achievement as well as ongoing classroom evaluations (among other factors), and must provide educators with incentives when they assume additional responsibilities and leadership roles. According to the Executive Office of Education, funding will be available beginning in fall 2009 based on the quality of the applications submitted through a competitive grant process, and guidelines will be available in the near future.
View the state’s entire updated fact sheet online here.
View the grant announcement, including full details on eligibility and requirements, for the Teacher Incentive Fund here.

Housing and Community Development

Municipalities/Localities
Community Development Block Grant
As was mentioned in our earlier newsletters, over $1 billion of the federal economic stimulus bill was appropriated for Community Development Block Grants (CDBG), of which MA is expected to receive approximately $29.4 million. Most of the funding goes directly to 36 cities and towns that have received CDBG funds in the past, although some funding is available for communities that do not directly receive CDBG funds. These funds are used at the local level for projects that provide housing and economic opportunities for low and moderate-income families. The table belowoutlines the amount of funding each of the 36 communities will be receiving from the expanded funding also known as CDBG-R.

In order for a nonprofit to receive these funds, they need to speak with their local government to find out if they are applying for a CDBG grant, and how the nonprofit could assist in providing services (i.e. workforce training) in the community if the local government receives the grant.

However, as you will note from the table, Massachusetts will also receive over $9 million to allocate to cities and towns not part of the 36 communities receiving CDBG formula funding. There are several different program components within the Massachusetts CDBG program administered by the Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD). Each component differs in purpose, application requirements, award levels, and grant cycles. These funds are intended to support municipalities with a population under 50,000 and other municipalities that do not receive CDBG funds directly from HUD.

Nonprofits located in communities that are not included in the aforementioned 36 should reach out to their municipal leaders about seeking funding from this pool.  In much the same way as traditional CDBG funding, those eligible communities may apply for a wide variety of community and economic development activities, including:

  • housing rehabilitation and housing related projects
  • infrastructure repair or replacement
  • construction or rehabilitation of community facilities
  • neighborhood improvement projects
  • economic development loans and other business assistance programs
  • social services projects
  • development improvement projects
  • architectural barrier removal projects
  • planning

DHCD reviews each application according to the respective program component’s evaluation criteria.  Each application must meet one of the National Objectives defined by HUD below:

  • benefit a majority of low- and moderate-income people;
  • aid in the prevention or elimination of slums and blight;
  • meet an urgent condition posing a serious threat to the health and welfare of the community where other financial resources are not available to meet such needs.

In addition to these requirements ARRA requires that each recipient provide a written description of how the use of CDBG-R funds for the activity will maximize job creation and economic benefit in relation to the CDBG-R funds obligated, and will address the Recovery Act, by:

    (A) Preserving and creating jobs and promoting economic recovery;
    (B) Assisting those most impacted by the recession;
    (C) Providing investment needed to increase economic efficiency;
    (D) Investing in transportation, environmental protection, or other infrastructure
    that will provide long-term economic benefits;
    (E) Minimizing or avoiding reductions in essential services; or
    (F) Fostering energy independence.

It is unclear at the moment as to when and how Massachusetts DHCD will allocate the additional funding from CDBG-R that is at its disposal. However, community based organizations should take note that HUD has stipulated in its guidelines to the states, including Massachusetts, that grantees are cautioned that, “despite the expedited application and plan process, they are still responsible for ensuring that all citizens have equal access to information about activities assisted with CDBG-R funds.”

Nonprofits should also take note that language in ARRA which appropriates the CDBG-R funds, states that, “…in selecting projects to be funded, recipients shall give priority to projects that can award contracts based on bids within 120 days from the date the funds are made available to the recipients… and recipients shall give preference to activities that can be started and completed expeditiously, including a goal of using at least 50 percent of the funds for activities that can be initiated not later than 120 days after the date of the enactment of this Act.”

For more information see: here

List of communities and amounts of funding under CDBG-R

    MA MA NONENTITLEMENT $9,103,174
    MA ARLINGTON $348,928
    MA ATTLEBORO $125,811
    MA BARNSTABLE $94,642
    MA BOSTON $5,366,011
    MA BROCKTON $398,596
    MA BROOKLINE $436,204
    MA CAMBRIDGE $851,070
    MA CHICOPEE $347,428
    MA FALL RIVER $805,818
    MA FITCHBURG $312,948
    MA FRAMINGHAM $143,643
    MA GLOUCESTER $212,436
    MA HAVERHILL $282,868
    MA HOLYOKE $360,646
    MA LAWRENCE $464,372
    MA LEOMINSTER $137,704
    MA LOWELL $639,803
    MA LYNN $675,437
    MA MALDEN $416,120
    MA MEDFORD $468,454
    MA NEW BEDFORD $802,671
    MA NEWTON $603,513
    MA NORTHAMPTON $201,513
    MA PEABODY CITY $124,662
    MA PITTSFIELD $401,213
    MA PLYMOUTH TOWN $106,390
    MA QUINCY $554,366
    MA SALEM $305,977
    MA SOMERVILLE $772,044
    MA SPRINGFIELD $1,111,756
    MA TAUNTON $236,442
    MA WALTHAM $286,106
    MA WESTFIELD $120,127
    MA WEYMOUTH $217,173
    MA WORCESTER $1,245,014
    MA YARMOUTH $37,747

Community Services Block Grant

ARRA appropriates $1 billion for the Community Services Block Grant (CSBG), a federally funded, antipoverty reduction program that was created in 1964 topromote and provide an array of services and activities to encourage self-sufficiency and to make permanent improvements in the lives of low-income families and individuals. CSBG provides core funding to 24 existing duly designated Community Action Agencies (CAAs). Each CAA is a private non-profit entity operated by a tripartite board representing private and public sectors and low-income people who reside or work in the designated service area. Massachusetts is expected to receive $24 million in additional funding (see the table below).

Services provided by CAAs include, but are not limited to:

    – Employment and job skills training
    – Food and nutrition assistance
    – Child development programs, including Head Start and center-based day care
    – Individual and family self-sufficiency initiatives
    – Youth development
    – Fuel and energy assistance
    – Domestic violence counseling and emergency assistance
    – Emergency assistance such as, temporary shelter, hunger, medical
    assistance, clothing, conflict resolution, etc.
    – Affordable housing and homeownership opportunities
    – Assistance to homeless and “at-risk” families and individuals
    – Transportation assistance

Administered by the Mass. Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD), each designated CAA is eligible for federal funding through an annual application process and required to submit a Community Action Plan every three years. However, under ARRA, there may be new opportunities for nonprofits to collaborate with CAA in delivering services. As part of DHCD’s “CSBG Recovery Act Work Plan” under ARRA, each eligible entity is required to include a description of how “new linkages will be developed to fill gaps in service identified during their Fiscal Year 2009 Community Action Planning and CSBG Recovery Act proposed project concept development process.” Furthermore, the descriptions are required to include a methodology for information dissemination, referral to “other services providers,” and case management follow-ups.

DHCD as a condition of receiving CSBG Recovery Act funds from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, has already prepared its Fiscal Year 2009 – 2010 Community Services Block Grant (CSBG) Plan and scheduled a public information session on the draft Recovery Act Plan for May 14, 2009 – 9:00 AM to 11:00 AM at the DHCD Conference Room B, 2nd Floor100 Cambridge Street, Boston, MA 02114

Click here to read the entire proposed state plan for use of Community Service Development Block Grant.

CAA Location CSBG Recovery Act Allocation TotalCAA/
Non-CSBG
Budget
# Served
ABCD Boston. $9,560,926 $127,217,286 88,509
ACTION Gloucester $458,924 $17,769,565 5,649
BCAC Pittsfield $629,171 $8,099,089 15,089
CEOC Cambridge $698,255 $1,081,492 19,714
CAAS Somerville $587,227 $4,488,327 1,867
CFC Fall River. $875,904 $26,841,785 31,900
CACCI Barnstable $572,421 $9,820,030 13,844
CAI Haverhill $476,196 $12,869,128 13,605
CA! Greenfield $1,026,412 $14,277,693 27,071
CAPIC Chelsea $503,337 $10,952,143 10,296
CTI Lowell $824,091 $63,840,759 34,251
GLCAC Lawrence $555,150 $25,236,593 19,575
LEO Lynn $715,530 $8,911,227 11,073
MOC Fitchburg $634,105 $16,724,045 22,352
NSCAP Peabody $545,280 $7,341,288 13,390
PACE New Bedford $774,745 $44,273,294 34,690
QCAP Quincy $453,990 $23,225,585 21,402
SHI Avon $737,733 $23,763,856 26,133
SMOC Framingham $500,870 $61,452,442 40,510
SSCAC Plymouth. $453,990 $14,409,644 19,734
SPCA Springfield $838,894 $2,616,969 5,967
TRI-CAP Malden. $668,647 $8,720,499 13,182
VOC Holyoke $562,553 $27,076,706 37,500
WCAC Worcester $1,019,009 $16,428,237 25,005

Total
$24,673,360 $577,437,682 $552,309

Helpful websites:

Full list of federal grants available through the Recovery Act

Medicaid and Healthcare

Nutrition

Housing, Infrastructure, Economic Development

Unemployment Services:

Environment and Energy:

Save the dates:

  • May 29 – Nonprofit Congress-Boston area meeting
  • June 8 – Nonprofit Awareness Day and Nonprofit Excellence Awards Ceremony
  • November 13 – MNN / Associated Grant Makers Annual Conference – “Grantmakers and Grantees for the Common Good” | Sheraton Framingham

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