Solicitation of Proposals for the University Center Economic Development Program, 1409-1411 [E6-65]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 71, No. 5 / Monday, January 9, 2006 / Notices Dated: January 3, 2006. Margaret J. Boland, Designated Federal Official. [FR Doc. 06–147 Filed 1–6–06; 8:45 am] BROADCASTING BOARD OF GOVERNORS BILLING CODE 3410–11–M Wednesday, January 11, 2006 3 p.m.–5 p.m. PLACE: Middle East Broadcasting Networks, Inc., 7600 Boston Blvd., Suite D, Springfield, VA 22153. CLOSED MEETING: The members of the Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG) will meet in closed session to review and discuss a number of issues relating to U.S. Government-funded nonmilitary international broadcasting. They will address internal procedural, budgetary, and personnel issues, as well as sensitive foreign policy issues relating to potential options in the U.S. international broadcasting field. This meeting is closed because if open it likely would either disclose matters that would be properly classified to be kept secret in the interest of foreign policy under the appropriate executive order (5 U.S.C. 552b.(c)(1)) or would disclose information the premature disclosure of which would be likely to significantly frustrate implementation of a proposed agency action. (5 U.S.C. 552b.(c)(9)(B)). In addition, part of the discussion will relate solely to the internal personnel and organizational issues of the BBG or the International Broadcasting Bureau. (5 U.S.C. 552b.(c)(2) and (6)). FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Persons interested in obtaining more information should contact Carol Booker at (202) 203–4545. Sunshine Act Meeting DATE AND TIME: DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Forest Service Glen/Colusa County Resource Advisory Committee AGENCY: ACTION: Forest Service, USDA. Notice of meeting. SUMMARY: The Glenn/Colusa County Resource Advisory Committee (RAC) will meet in Willows, California. Agenda items to be covered include: (1) Introductions, (2) Approval of Minutes, (3) Public Comment, (4) Web site Update, (5) How to Solicit Projects, (6) General Discussion, (7) Next Agenda. The meeting will be held on January 23, 2006, from 1:30 p.m. and end at approximately 4:30 p.m. DATES: The meeting will be held at the Mendocino National Forest Supervisor’s Office, 825 N. Humboldt Ave., Willows, CA 95988. Individuals wishing to speak or propose agenda items must send their names and proposals to Jim Giachino, DFO, 825 N. Humboldt Ave., Willows, CA 95988. ADDRESSES: FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Bobbin Gaddini, Committee Coordinator, USDA, Mendocino National Forest, Grindstone Ranger District, 825 N. Humboldt Ave., Willows, CA 95939. (530) 934–1268; email ggaddini@fs.fed.us. The meeting is open to the public. Committee discussion is limited to Forest Service staff and Committee members. However, persons who wish to bring matters to the attention of the Committee may file written statements with the Committee staff before or after the meeting. Public input sessions will be provided and individuals who made written requests by January 20, 2006 will have the opportunity to address the committee at those sessions. Dated: January 3, 2006. Carol Booker, Legal Counsel. [FR Doc. 06–188 Filed 1–5–06; 10:10 am] BILLING CODE 8230–01–M cprice-sewell on PROD1PC66 with NOTICES SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Dated: January 3, 2006. James F. Giachino, Designated Federal Official. [FR Doc. 06–163 Filed 1–6–06; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410–11–M VerDate Aug<31>2005 15:31 Jan 06, 2006 Jkt 208001 DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Economic Development Administration [991215339–6001–19] Solicitation of Proposals for the University Center Economic Development Program Economic Development Administration (EDA), Department of Commerce (DOC) ACTION: Notice and request for proposals. AGENCY: SUMMARY: EDA is soliciting proposals for FY 2006 University Center Program funding in the areas served by its Atlanta and Seattle regional offices. EDA’s mission is to lead the federal economic development agenda by PO 00000 Frm 00004 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 1409 promoting innovation and competitiveness, preparing American regions for growth and success in the worldwide economy. Institutions of higher education have many assets, such as faculty, staff, libraries, laboratories, and computer systems, which can help to address local economic problems and opportunities. With funding from EDA, institutions of higher education establish and operate University Centers, which provide technical assistance to public and private sector organizations with the goal of enhancing local economic development. EDA has traditionally renewed an award to a University Center on an annual basis, as long as it maintained a satisfactory level of performance and Congress appropriated funds for EDA’s Local and National Technical Assistance Programs. In FY 2004, EDA began a phased implementation of a three-year competitive grant cycle for all University Center projects, beginning with those in its Austin and Denver regional offices. In FY 2005, with the competition announced in this notice for University Center projects in the areas served by EDA’s Atlanta and Seattle regional offices, EDA is completing the phased implementation of competition for University Center Program funding. DATES: Proposals must be received by the appropriate EDA regional office by February 21, 2006 at 4 p.m. local time. EDA’s Atlanta and Seattle regional offices will each hold a teleconference to answer questions about the FY 2006 competition for University Center funding on January 19, 2006 and January 23, 2006, respectively. For further information and instructions regarding these teleconferences, please see the information provided below under ‘‘Teleconferences.’’ ADDRESSES: From proponents in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee: University Center Program Competition, Economic Development Administration, Atlanta Regional Office, 401 West Peachtree Street, NW., Suite 1820, Atlanta, Georgia 30308. From proponents in Alaska, American Samoa, Arizona, California, Guam, Hawaii, Idaho, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nevada, Northern Mariana Islands, Oregon, Republic of Palau and Washington: University Center Program Competition, Economic Development Administration, Seattle Regional Office, Federal Jackson Building, Room 1856, 915 Second Avenue, Seattle, Washington 98174. E:\FR\FM\09JAN1.SGM 09JAN1 cprice-sewell on PROD1PC66 with NOTICES 1410 Federal Register / Vol. 71, No. 5 / Monday, January 9, 2006 / Notices For a copy of the Federal Funding Opportunity (FFO) announcement for this request for proposals, please see the Web site listed below under ‘‘Electronic Access.’’ FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For additional information or for a paper copy of the FFO announcement, contact the appropriate EDA regional office listed above. EDA’s Internet Web site at http://www.eda.gov contains additional information on EDA and its University Center Program. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Electronic Access: EDA is not currently able to accept electronic submissions of proposal packages. However, the FFO announcement for the FY 2006 University Center Program competition is available through Grants.gov at http://www.grants.gov. Additional information is available through EDA’s Internet Web site at http://www.eda.gov. Funding Availability: Funding appropriated under the FY 2006 Science, State, Justice, Commerce and Related Agencies Appropriations Act (Pub. L. 109–108) (2006 Appropriations Act) is available for technical assistance programs authorized by the Public Works and Economic Development Act of 1965 (42 U.S.C. 3121 et seq.), as amended by the Economic Development Administration Reauthorization Act of 2004 (Pub. L. 108–373) (PWEDA). Funds in the amount of $8,215,711 have been appropriated for FY 2006 and shall remain available until expended. EDA expects to allocate approximately $6,839,529 to the University Center Program and the remaining funds to EDA’s Local and National Technical Assistance Programs. The amount of University Center funding available for competition in FY 2006 is expected to be approximately $1,426,223 in the Atlanta regional office and approximately $1,324,444 in the Seattle regional office. Anticipated annual awards for University Centers under the FY 2006 competition are in the $125,000 to $150,000 range in the Atlanta regional office, and in the $100,000 to $215,000 range in the Seattle regional office. Regional offices may, however, choose to fund proposals under this competition outside these ranges. The remaining FY 2006 program funds will be used to continue support for current University Centers. Subject to the availability of funding, the funds made available under the University Center Program are anticipated to be available until expended. Statutory Authority: The authority for the University Center Program is VerDate Aug<31>2005 15:31 Jan 06, 2006 Jkt 208001 PWEDA. On August 11, 2005, EDA published an interim final rule (70 FR 47002) to reflect the amendments made to EDA’s authorizing statute by the Economic Development Administration Reauthorization Act of 2004 (Pub. L. 108–373). The interim final rule became effective on October 1, 2005. You may access the interim final rule and PWEDA on EDA’s Internet Web site at http://www.eda.gov. EDA’s public comment period for the interim final rule ran from August 11, 2005 to November 14, 2005. On December 15, 2005, EDA published an interim final rule (70 FR 74193; 70 FR 74196) to effect only those changes to the August 11, 2005 interim final rule specified in the Conference Report accompanying the 2006 Appropriations Act. EDA will consider and respond to comments received during the public comment period and will make additional revisions to the August 11, 2005 interim final rule in publishing a final rule during 2006. Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number: 11.303, Economic Development—Technical Assistance. Eligibility: For the University Center Program, EDA considers all accredited institutions of higher education as eligible applicants. For FY 2006, the University Center competition is open to eligible applicants in areas served by EDA’s Atlanta and Seattle regional offices. The Atlanta regional office serves Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee. The Seattle regional office serves Alaska, American Samoa, Arizona, California, Guam, Hawaii, Idaho, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nevada, Northern Mariana Islands, Oregon, Republic of Palau and Washington. Cost Sharing Requirements: Generally, the amount of the EDA grant may not exceed fifty (50) percent of the total cost of the project. Projects may receive an additional amount that shall not exceed thirty (30) percent, based on the relative needs of the region in which the project will be located, as determined by EDA. See Section 204(a) of PWEDA (42 U.S.C. 3144) and Section 301.4(b)(1) of the interim final rule. For projects of a national scope under part 306 of the interim final rule (Training, Research and Technical Assistance), and for all other projects under part 306 of the interim final rule, after the application of the first two (2) sentences of this paragraph, the Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development has the discretion to establish a maximum EDA investment PO 00000 Frm 00005 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 rate of up to one-hundred (100) percent where the project (i) merits and is not otherwise feasible without an increase to the EDA investment rate; or (ii) will be of no or only incidental benefit to the recipient. See Section 204(c)(3) of PWEDA (42 U.S.C. 3144) and Section 301.4(b)(4) of the interim final rule. Potential applicants should contact the appropriate EDA regional office to make this determination. While cash contributions are preferred, in-kind contributions, fairly evaluated by EDA, may include assumptions of debt and contributions of space, equipment, and services and may provide the non-Federal share of the total project cost. See Section 204(b) of PWEDA (42 U.S.C. 3144). In-kind contributions must be eligible project costs and meet applicable Federal cost principles and uniform administrative requirements. Funds from other Federal financial assistance awards are not considered matching share funds. The nature of contribution (cash or in-kind) and the amount of matching share funds will be taken into consideration in the proposal review process. Cash contributions are preferred. Intergovernmental Review: Applications under the University Center Program are subject to Executive Order 12372, ‘‘Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs.’’ Evaluation and Selection Procedures: EDA’s Atlanta and Seattle regional offices will conduct an initial administrative and technical review of each proposal package to determine its completeness and compliance with the requirements of this solicitation. EDA’s Atlanta and Seattle regional offices will then conduct an internal review of each proposal meeting the requirements of this solicitation. This review will be conducted by a minimum of three (3) EDA staff using the criteria provided under ‘‘Evaluation Criteria’’ below. Successful proponents under this competition solicitation will be invited to submit a complete application by the Atlanta regional office or the Seattle regional office. Evaluation Criteria: The following University Center-specific investment policy guidelines have been adapted from the investment policy guidelines set forth in Section 301.8 of the interim final rule. EDA investments in proposed University Centers will be competitively rated and ranked on their ability to satisfy one or more of these University Center-specific investment policy guidelines (each criterion will be given equivalent weight). 1. Be market-based and results driven. An investment in an EDA University Center will capitalize on the university’s E:\FR\FM\09JAN1.SGM 09JAN1 cprice-sewell on PROD1PC66 with NOTICES Federal Register / Vol. 71, No. 5 / Monday, January 9, 2006 / Notices competitive strengths and will bolster regional economic competitiveness, resulting in tangible, quantifiable improvements in regional economic health, such as increased numbers of higher-skill, higher-wage jobs, increased tax revenue or increased private sector investment. 2. Have strong organizational leadership. An investment will have strong leadership, relevant project management experience, and a significant commitment of human resources talent to ensure a highperforming University Center. Specifically for University Center investments, this includes: (a) The extent to which the proposed University Center will maximize coordination with other relevant organizations and avoid duplication of services offered by other organizations; (b) the extent to which the University Center will access, take advantage of, and be supported by the other resources present at the sponsoring institution, especially the institution’s economic development activities; and (c) the degree of evidence demonstrating the support and commitment (both financial and nonfinancial) of the highest management levels of the proposed University Center’s sponsoring institution. 3. Advance productivity, innovation and entrepreneurship. An investment in a proposed University Center will embrace the principles of entrepreneurship; enhance regional industry clusters, and leverage and link technology innovators (university research) with the private sector to create the conditions for greater productivity, innovation and higherskill, higher-wage job creation. 4. Look beyond the immediate economic horizon, anticipate economic changes, and diversify the local and regional economy. A University Center’s activities will be part of an overarching, long-term comprehensive economic development strategy that enhances a region’s success in achieving a rising standard of living. 5. Demonstrate a high degree of local commitment by exhibiting: • High levels of local government or non-profit matching funds and private sector leverage; • Clear and unified leadership and support by local elected officials; and • Strong cooperation between the business sector, relevant regional partners and local, State and Federal governments. In making its recommendations on which institutions should be invited to submit a full application, the EDA review team will strive to avoid the VerDate Aug<31>2005 15:31 Jan 06, 2006 Jkt 208001 concentration of program funding in a single or very limited number of geographic areas. For that reason, EDA cannot predict a minimum ranking of a successful proposal. Selection Factors: EDA expects to fund the highest ranking proposals submitted under this competition solicitation. However, EDA may select proposals out of order for several reasons, including: (1) Availability of funding; (2) geographic balance in distribution of funds; (3) program priorities and policy factors as set forth in the FFO announcement; or (4) the applicant’s performance under previous awards. The Department of Commerce PreAward Notification Requirements for Grants and Cooperative Agreements The Department of Commerce PreAward Notification Requirements for Grants and Cooperative Agreements, published in the Federal Register on December 30, 2004 (69 FR 78389), are applicable to this solicitation. Teleconferences EDA’s Atlanta and Seattle regional offices will each hold a teleconference to answer questions about the FY 2006 competition for University Center Program funding. Atlanta: The Atlanta regional office will hold its conference call on January 19, 2006 at 2 p.m. EST. In order to assure enough incoming lines are available, EDA requests colleges and universities planning to participate in the conference call to send an e-mail to tpellegrino@eda.doc.gov with ‘‘Conference Call Registration’’ in the subject line no later than 2 p.m. EST on January 17, 2006. The number for the conference call is 1–800–988–0490. The pass code for this conference call is ‘‘46468.’’ The lead contact for the conference call is Tom Pellegrino. Seattle: The Seattle regional office will hold its conference call on January 23, 2006 at 11 a.m. PST. In order to assure enough incoming lines are available, EDA requests colleges and universities planning to participate in the conference call to send an e-mail to batkinson@eda.doc.gov with ‘‘Conference Call Registration’’ in the subject line no later than 2 p.m. PST on January 19, 2006. The number for the conference call is 1–800–857–7001. The pass code for this conference call is ‘‘12458.’’ The lead contact for the conference call is Bettye Atkinson. Paperwork Reduction Act This document contains collection-ofinformation requirements subject to the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA). The PO 00000 Frm 00006 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 1411 use of Form ED–900P has been approved by OMB under the control number 0610–0094. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, no person is required to respond to, nor shall any person be subject to a penalty for failure to comply with, a collection of information subject to the requirements of the PRA unless that collection of information displays a currently valid OMB control number. Executive Order 12866 This notice has been determined to be not significant for purposes of Executive Order 12866. Executive Order 13132 (Federalism) It has been determined that this notice does not contain policies with Federalism implications as that term is defined in Executive Order 13132. Administrative Procedure Act/ Regulatory Flexibility Act Prior notice and an opportunity for public comments are not required by the Administrative Procedure Act or any other law for rules concerning grants, benefits, and contracts (5 U.S.C. 553(a)(2)). Because notice and opportunity for comment are not required pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553 or any other law, the analytical requirements of the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.) are inapplicable. Therefore, a regulatory flexibility analysis has not been prepared. Dated: January 4, 2006. Sandy K. Baruah, Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development. [FR Doc. E6–65 Filed 1–6–06; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–24–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Institute of Standards and Technology [Docket No.: 051222346–5346–01] Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowships (SURF) Gaithersburg and Boulder Programs; Availability of Funds National Institute of Standards and Technology, Commerce. ACTION: Notice. AGENCY: SUMMARY: The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) announces that the following programs are soliciting applications for financial assistance for FY 2006: (1) The Gaithersburg Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship Program, and (2) the Boulder Summer Undergraduate E:\FR\FM\09JAN1.SGM 09JAN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 71, Number 5 (Monday, January 9, 2006)]
[Notices]
[Pages 1409-1411]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E6-65]


=======================================================================
-----------------------------------------------------------------------

DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

Economic Development Administration

[991215339-6001-19]


Solicitation of Proposals for the University Center Economic 
Development Program

AGENCY: Economic Development Administration (EDA), Department of 
Commerce (DOC)

ACTION: Notice and request for proposals.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: EDA is soliciting proposals for FY 2006 University Center 
Program funding in the areas served by its Atlanta and Seattle regional 
offices. EDA's mission is to lead the federal economic development 
agenda by promoting innovation and competitiveness, preparing American 
regions for growth and success in the worldwide economy. Institutions 
of higher education have many assets, such as faculty, staff, 
libraries, laboratories, and computer systems, which can help to 
address local economic problems and opportunities. With funding from 
EDA, institutions of higher education establish and operate University 
Centers, which provide technical assistance to public and private 
sector organizations with the goal of enhancing local economic 
development. EDA has traditionally renewed an award to a University 
Center on an annual basis, as long as it maintained a satisfactory 
level of performance and Congress appropriated funds for EDA's Local 
and National Technical Assistance Programs. In FY 2004, EDA began a 
phased implementation of a three-year competitive grant cycle for all 
University Center projects, beginning with those in its Austin and 
Denver regional offices. In FY 2005, with the competition announced in 
this notice for University Center projects in the areas served by EDA's 
Atlanta and Seattle regional offices, EDA is completing the phased 
implementation of competition for University Center Program funding.

DATES: Proposals must be received by the appropriate EDA regional 
office by February 21, 2006 at 4 p.m. local time. EDA's Atlanta and 
Seattle regional offices will each hold a teleconference to answer 
questions about the FY 2006 competition for University Center funding 
on January 19, 2006 and January 23, 2006, respectively. For further 
information and instructions regarding these teleconferences, please 
see the information provided below under ``Teleconferences.''

ADDRESSES: From proponents in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, 
Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee: University 
Center Program Competition, Economic Development Administration, 
Atlanta Regional Office, 401 West Peachtree Street, NW., Suite 1820, 
Atlanta, Georgia 30308.
    From proponents in Alaska, American Samoa, Arizona, California, 
Guam, Hawaii, Idaho, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nevada, Northern 
Mariana Islands, Oregon, Republic of Palau and Washington: University 
Center Program Competition, Economic Development Administration, 
Seattle Regional Office, Federal Jackson Building, Room 1856, 915 
Second Avenue, Seattle, Washington 98174.

[[Page 1410]]

    For a copy of the Federal Funding Opportunity (FFO) announcement 
for this request for proposals, please see the Web site listed below 
under ``Electronic Access.''

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For additional information or for a 
paper copy of the FFO announcement, contact the appropriate EDA 
regional office listed above. EDA's Internet Web site at http://
www.eda.gov contains additional information on EDA and its University 
Center Program.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:
    Electronic Access: EDA is not currently able to accept electronic 
submissions of proposal packages. However, the FFO announcement for the 
FY 2006 University Center Program competition is available through 
Grants.gov at http://www.grants.gov. Additional information is 
available through EDA's Internet Web site at http://www.eda.gov.
    Funding Availability: Funding appropriated under the FY 2006 
Science, State, Justice, Commerce and Related Agencies Appropriations 
Act (Pub. L. 109-108) (2006 Appropriations Act) is available for 
technical assistance programs authorized by the Public Works and 
Economic Development Act of 1965 (42 U.S.C. 3121 et seq.), as amended 
by the Economic Development Administration Reauthorization Act of 2004 
(Pub. L. 108-373) (PWEDA). Funds in the amount of $8,215,711 have been 
appropriated for FY 2006 and shall remain available until expended.
    EDA expects to allocate approximately $6,839,529 to the University 
Center Program and the remaining funds to EDA's Local and National 
Technical Assistance Programs. The amount of University Center funding 
available for competition in FY 2006 is expected to be approximately 
$1,426,223 in the Atlanta regional office and approximately $1,324,444 
in the Seattle regional office. Anticipated annual awards for 
University Centers under the FY 2006 competition are in the $125,000 to 
$150,000 range in the Atlanta regional office, and in the $100,000 to 
$215,000 range in the Seattle regional office. Regional offices may, 
however, choose to fund proposals under this competition outside these 
ranges. The remaining FY 2006 program funds will be used to continue 
support for current University Centers. Subject to the availability of 
funding, the funds made available under the University Center Program 
are anticipated to be available until expended.
    Statutory Authority: The authority for the University Center 
Program is PWEDA. On August 11, 2005, EDA published an interim final 
rule (70 FR 47002) to reflect the amendments made to EDA's authorizing 
statute by the Economic Development Administration Reauthorization Act 
of 2004 (Pub. L. 108-373). The interim final rule became effective on 
October 1, 2005. You may access the interim final rule and PWEDA on 
EDA's Internet Web site at http://www.eda.gov. EDA's public comment 
period for the interim final rule ran from August 11, 2005 to November 
14, 2005. On December 15, 2005, EDA published an interim final rule (70 
FR 74193; 70 FR 74196) to effect only those changes to the August 11, 
2005 interim final rule specified in the Conference Report accompanying 
the 2006 Appropriations Act. EDA will consider and respond to comments 
received during the public comment period and will make additional 
revisions to the August 11, 2005 interim final rule in publishing a 
final rule during 2006.
    Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number: 11.303, 
Economic Development--Technical Assistance.
    Eligibility: For the University Center Program, EDA considers all 
accredited institutions of higher education as eligible applicants.
    For FY 2006, the University Center competition is open to eligible 
applicants in areas served by EDA's Atlanta and Seattle regional 
offices. The Atlanta regional office serves Alabama, Florida, Georgia, 
Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee. 
The Seattle regional office serves Alaska, American Samoa, Arizona, 
California, Guam, Hawaii, Idaho, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nevada, 
Northern Mariana Islands, Oregon, Republic of Palau and Washington.
    Cost Sharing Requirements: Generally, the amount of the EDA grant 
may not exceed fifty (50) percent of the total cost of the project. 
Projects may receive an additional amount that shall not exceed thirty 
(30) percent, based on the relative needs of the region in which the 
project will be located, as determined by EDA. See Section 204(a) of 
PWEDA (42 U.S.C. 3144) and Section 301.4(b)(1) of the interim final 
rule. For projects of a national scope under part 306 of the interim 
final rule (Training, Research and Technical Assistance), and for all 
other projects under part 306 of the interim final rule, after the 
application of the first two (2) sentences of this paragraph, the 
Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development has the 
discretion to establish a maximum EDA investment rate of up to one-
hundred (100) percent where the project (i) merits and is not otherwise 
feasible without an increase to the EDA investment rate; or (ii) will 
be of no or only incidental benefit to the recipient. See Section 
204(c)(3) of PWEDA (42 U.S.C. 3144) and Section 301.4(b)(4) of the 
interim final rule. Potential applicants should contact the appropriate 
EDA regional office to make this determination.
    While cash contributions are preferred, in-kind contributions, 
fairly evaluated by EDA, may include assumptions of debt and 
contributions of space, equipment, and services and may provide the 
non-Federal share of the total project cost. See Section 204(b) of 
PWEDA (42 U.S.C. 3144). In-kind contributions must be eligible project 
costs and meet applicable Federal cost principles and uniform 
administrative requirements. Funds from other Federal financial 
assistance awards are not considered matching share funds. The nature 
of contribution (cash or in-kind) and the amount of matching share 
funds will be taken into consideration in the proposal review process. 
Cash contributions are preferred.
    Intergovernmental Review: Applications under the University Center 
Program are subject to Executive Order 12372, ``Intergovernmental 
Review of Federal Programs.''
    Evaluation and Selection Procedures: EDA's Atlanta and Seattle 
regional offices will conduct an initial administrative and technical 
review of each proposal package to determine its completeness and 
compliance with the requirements of this solicitation.
    EDA's Atlanta and Seattle regional offices will then conduct an 
internal review of each proposal meeting the requirements of this 
solicitation. This review will be conducted by a minimum of three (3) 
EDA staff using the criteria provided under ``Evaluation Criteria'' 
below. Successful proponents under this competition solicitation will 
be invited to submit a complete application by the Atlanta regional 
office or the Seattle regional office.
    Evaluation Criteria: The following University Center-specific 
investment policy guidelines have been adapted from the investment 
policy guidelines set forth in Section 301.8 of the interim final rule. 
EDA investments in proposed University Centers will be competitively 
rated and ranked on their ability to satisfy one or more of these 
University Center-specific investment policy guidelines (each criterion 
will be given equivalent weight).
    1. Be market-based and results driven. An investment in an EDA 
University Center will capitalize on the university's

[[Page 1411]]

competitive strengths and will bolster regional economic 
competitiveness, resulting in tangible, quantifiable improvements in 
regional economic health, such as increased numbers of higher-skill, 
higher-wage jobs, increased tax revenue or increased private sector 
investment.
    2. Have strong organizational leadership. An investment will have 
strong leadership, relevant project management experience, and a 
significant commitment of human resources talent to ensure a high-
performing University Center. Specifically for University Center 
investments, this includes: (a) The extent to which the proposed 
University Center will maximize coordination with other relevant 
organizations and avoid duplication of services offered by other 
organizations; (b) the extent to which the University Center will 
access, take advantage of, and be supported by the other resources 
present at the sponsoring institution, especially the institution's 
economic development activities; and (c) the degree of evidence 
demonstrating the support and commitment (both financial and non-
financial) of the highest management levels of the proposed University 
Center's sponsoring institution.
    3. Advance productivity, innovation and entrepreneurship. An 
investment in a proposed University Center will embrace the principles 
of entrepreneurship; enhance regional industry clusters, and leverage 
and link technology innovators (university research) with the private 
sector to create the conditions for greater productivity, innovation 
and higher-skill, higher-wage job creation.
    4. Look beyond the immediate economic horizon, anticipate economic 
changes, and diversify the local and regional economy. A University 
Center's activities will be part of an overarching, long-term 
comprehensive economic development strategy that enhances a region's 
success in achieving a rising standard of living.
    5. Demonstrate a high degree of local commitment by exhibiting:
     High levels of local government or non-profit matching 
funds and private sector leverage;
     Clear and unified leadership and support by local elected 
officials; and
     Strong cooperation between the business sector, relevant 
regional partners and local, State and Federal governments.

In making its recommendations on which institutions should be invited 
to submit a full application, the EDA review team will strive to avoid 
the concentration of program funding in a single or very limited number 
of geographic areas. For that reason, EDA cannot predict a minimum 
ranking of a successful proposal.
    Selection Factors: EDA expects to fund the highest ranking 
proposals submitted under this competition solicitation. However, EDA 
may select proposals out of order for several reasons, including: (1) 
Availability of funding; (2) geographic balance in distribution of 
funds; (3) program priorities and policy factors as set forth in the 
FFO announcement; or (4) the applicant's performance under previous 
awards.

The Department of Commerce Pre-Award Notification Requirements for 
Grants and Cooperative Agreements

    The Department of Commerce Pre-Award Notification Requirements for 
Grants and Cooperative Agreements, published in the Federal Register on 
December 30, 2004 (69 FR 78389), are applicable to this solicitation.

Teleconferences

    EDA's Atlanta and Seattle regional offices will each hold a 
teleconference to answer questions about the FY 2006 competition for 
University Center Program funding.
    Atlanta: The Atlanta regional office will hold its conference call 
on January 19, 2006 at 2 p.m. EST. In order to assure enough incoming 
lines are available, EDA requests colleges and universities planning to 
participate in the conference call to send an e-mail to 
tpellegrino@eda.doc.gov with ``Conference Call Registration'' in the 
subject line no later than 2 p.m. EST on January 17, 2006. The number 
for the conference call is 1-800-988-0490. The pass code for this 
conference call is ``46468.'' The lead contact for the conference call 
is Tom Pellegrino.
    Seattle: The Seattle regional office will hold its conference call 
on January 23, 2006 at 11 a.m. PST. In order to assure enough incoming 
lines are available, EDA requests colleges and universities planning to 
participate in the conference call to send an e-mail to 
batkinson@eda.doc.gov with ``Conference Call Registration'' in the 
subject line no later than 2 p.m. PST on January 19, 2006. The number 
for the conference call is 1-800-857-7001. The pass code for this 
conference call is ``12458.'' The lead contact for the conference call 
is Bettye Atkinson.

Paperwork Reduction Act

    This document contains collection-of-information requirements 
subject to the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA). The use of Form ED-900P 
has been approved by OMB under the control number 0610-0094. 
Notwithstanding any other provision of law, no person is required to 
respond to, nor shall any person be subject to a penalty for failure to 
comply with, a collection of information subject to the requirements of 
the PRA unless that collection of information displays a currently 
valid OMB control number.

Executive Order 12866

    This notice has been determined to be not significant for purposes 
of Executive Order 12866.

Executive Order 13132 (Federalism)

    It has been determined that this notice does not contain policies 
with Federalism implications as that term is defined in Executive Order 
13132.

Administrative Procedure Act/Regulatory Flexibility Act

    Prior notice and an opportunity for public comments are not 
required by the Administrative Procedure Act or any other law for rules 
concerning grants, benefits, and contracts (5 U.S.C. 553(a)(2)). 
Because notice and opportunity for comment are not required pursuant to 
5 U.S.C. 553 or any other law, the analytical requirements of the 
Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.) are inapplicable. 
Therefore, a regulatory flexibility analysis has not been prepared.

    Dated: January 4, 2006.
Sandy K. Baruah,
Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development.
[FR Doc. E6-65 Filed 1-6-06; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3510-24-P