Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program; Fire Prevention and Safety Grants, 22511-22517 [2014-09179]

Download as PDF tkelley on DSK3SPTVN1PROD with NOTICES Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 77 / Tuesday, April 22, 2014 / Notices Agenda: To review and evaluate grant applications. Place: Hyatt Regency Bethesda, 1 Bethesda Metro Center, Bethesda, MD 20814. Contact Person: Delia Tang, MD, Scientific Review Officer, Research Programs Review Branch, Division of Extramural Activities, National Cancer Institute, NIH, 9609 Medical Center Drive, 7W602, Bethesda, MD 20892– 9750, 240–276–6456, tangd@mail.nih.gov. Name of Committee: National Cancer Institute Special Emphasis Panel; NCI SPORE Review. Date: June 4–5, 2014. Time: 5:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. Agenda: To review and evaluate grant applications. Place: Bethesda North Marriott Hotel & Conference Center, Montgomery County Conference Center Facility, 5701 Marinelli Road, North Bethesda, MD 20852. Contact Person: Wlodek Lopaczynski, MD, Ph.D., Scientific Review Officer, Research Programs Review Branch, Division of Extramural Activities, National Cancer Institute, NIH, 9609 Medical Center Drive, 7W608, Bethesda, MD 20892–9750, 240–276– 6458, lopacw@mail.nih.gov. Name of Committee: National Cancer Institute Special Emphasis Panel; Omnibus SEP–7. Date: June 13, 2014. Time: 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Agenda: To review and evaluate grant applications. Place: National Cancer Institute Shady Grove, 9609 Medical Center Drive, Room 7W640, Rockville, MD 20850 (Telephone Conference Call). Contact Person: Ilda F. S. Melo, Ph.D., Scientific Review Officer, Resources and Training Review Branch, Division of Extramural Activities, National Cancer Institute, NIH, 9609 Medical Center Drive, 7W122, Bethesda, MD 20892–9750, 240–276– 6349, ilda.melo@nih.gov. Name of Committee: National Cancer Institute Initial Review Group, Subcommittee I—Transition to Independence. Date: June 17–18, 2014. Time: 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Agenda: To review and evaluate grant applications. Place: Hyatt Regency Bethesda, One Bethesda Metro Center, 7400 Wisconsin Avenue, Bethesda, MD 20814. Contact Person: Sergei Radaev, Ph.D., Scientific Review Officer, Resources and Training Review Branch, Division of Extramural Activities, National Cancer Institute, NIH, 9609 Medical Center Drive, 7W634, Bethesda, MD 20892–9750, 240–276– 6466, sradaev@mail.nih.gov. Name of Committee: National Cancer Institute Special Emphasis Panel, Omnibus SEP–5. Date: June 20, 2014. Time: 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Agenda: To review and evaluate grant applications. Place: National Cancer Institute Shady Grove, 9609 Medical Center Drive, Room 7W030, Rockville, MD 20850 (Telephone Conference Call). Contact Person: Donald L. Coppock, Ph.D., Scientific Review Officer, Research VerDate Mar<15>2010 16:26 Apr 21, 2014 Jkt 232001 Technology and Contract Review Branch, Division of Extramural Activities, National Cancer Institute, NIH, 9609 Medical Center Drive, 7W260, Bethesda, MD 20892–9750, 240–276–6382, donald.coppock@nih.gov. Name of Committee: National Cancer Institute Initial Review Group, Subcommittee J—Career Development. Date: June 24, 2014. Time: 7:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Agenda: To review and evaluate grant applications and/or proposals. Place: The Westin Alexandria, 400 Courthouse Square, Alexandria, VA 22314. Contact Person: Ilda F. S. Melo, Ph.D., Scientific Review Officer, Resources and Training Review Branch, Division of Extramural Activities, National Cancer Institute, NIH, 9609 Medical Center Drive, 7W122, Bethesda, MD 20892–9750, 240–276– 6468, ilda.melo@nih.gov. Name of Committee: National Cancer Institute Special Emphasis Panel, Omnibus SEP–2. Date: June 24–25, 2014. Time: 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Agenda: To review and evaluate grant applications. Place: Bethesda North Marriott Hotel & Conference Center, Montgomery County Conference Center Facility, 5701 Marinelli Road, North Bethesda, MD 20852. Contact Person: Caterina Bianco, MD, Ph.D., Scientific Review Officer, Research Programs Review Branch, Division of Extramural Activities, National Cancer Institute, NIH, 9609 Medical Center Drive, 7W610, Bethesda, MD 20892–9750, 240–276– 6459, biancoc@mail.nih.gov. Name of Committee: National Cancer Institute Special Emphasis Panel, Omnibus SEP–13, Date: June 26–27, 2014. Time: 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Agenda: To review and evaluate grant applications. Place: Bethesda Marriott Suites, 6711 Democracy Boulevard, Bethesda, MD 20817. Contact Person: Viatcheslav A. Soldatenkov, MD, Ph.D., Scientific Review Officer, Special Review Branch, Division of Extramural Activities, National Cancer Institute, NIH, 9609 Medical Center Drive, Room 7W254, Bethesda, MD 20892–9750, 240–276–6378, soldatenkovv@mail.nih.gov. Name of Committee: National Cancer Institute Special Emphasis Panel, Omnibus SEP–10. Date: July 16, 2014. Time: 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Agenda: To review and evaluate grant applications. Place: National Cancer Institute Shady Grove, 9609 Medical Center Drive, Room 7W212, Rockville, MD 20850 (Telephone Conference Call). Contact Person: Shakeel Ahmad, Ph.D., Scientific Review Officer, Research Programs Review Branch, Division of Extramural Activities, National Cancer Institute, NIH, 9609 Medical Center Drive, Room 7W122, Bethesda, MD 20892–9750, 240–276–6349, ahmads@mail.nih.gov. Name of Committee: National Cancer Institute Special Emphasis Panel, Omnibus SEP–1. PO 00000 Frm 00043 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 22511 Date: July 29–30, 2014. Time: 5:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. Agenda: To review and evaluate grant applications. Place: Bethesda North Marriott Hotel & Conference Center, Montgomery County Conference Center Facility, 5701 Marinelli Road, North Bethesda, MD 20852. Contact Person: Adriana Stoica, Ph.D., Scientific Review Officer, Resources and Training Review Branch, Division of Extramural Activities, National Cancer Institute, NIH, 9609 Medical Center Drive, 7W234, Bethesda, MD 20892–9750, 240–276– 6368, Stoicaa2@mail.nih.gov. Information is also available on the Institute’s/Center’s home page: http:// deainfo.nci.nih.gov/advisory/sep/sep.htm, where an agenda and any additional information for the meeting will be posted when available. (Catalogue of Federal Domestic Assistance Program Nos. 93.392, Cancer Construction; 93.393, Cancer Cause and Prevention Research; 93.394, Cancer Detection and Diagnosis Research; 93.395, Cancer Treatment Research; 93.396, Cancer Biology Research; 93.397, Cancer Centers Support; 93.398, Cancer Research Manpower; 93.399, Cancer Control, National Institutes of Health, HHS) Dated: April 16, 2014. Melanie J. Gray, Program Analyst, Office of Federal Advisory Committee Policy. [FR Doc. 2014–09038 Filed 4–21–14; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4140–01–P DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Federal Emergency Management Agency [Docket ID FEMA–2014–0016] Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program; Fire Prevention and Safety Grants Federal Emergency Management Agency, DHS. ACTION: Notice of guidance. AGENCY: This Notice provides guidelines that describe the application process for grants and the criteria for awarding Fire Prevention and Safety (FP&S) grants in the fiscal year (FY) 2013 Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) Program year. It explains the differences, if any, between these guidelines and those recommended by representatives of the Nation’s fire service leadership during the annual Criteria Development meeting, which was held December 13–14, 2012. The application period for the FY 2013 FP&S Grant Program year was held February 18–March 21, 2014, and was announced on www.grants.gov. Approximately SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\22APN1.SGM 22APN1 22512 Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 77 / Tuesday, April 22, 2014 / Notices 1,200 applications for FP&S Grant Program funding were submitted electronically, using the application submission form and process available at https://portal.fema.gov. The ‘‘FY 2013 Fire Prevention and Safety Program Funding Opportunity Announcement’’ was published on the AFG Web site (www.fema.gov/firegrants). Additional information to assist applicants was provided on the AFG Web site, including an applicant tutorial, list of frequently asked questions, a ‘‘Get Ready Guide, and a Quick Reference Guide.’’ The FP&S Grant Program is composed of two eligible activities; the Fire Prevention and Safety (FP&S) Activity and Firefighter Research and Development (R&D) Activity. FP&S Grants are made available directly to fire departments; national, regional, state, and local organizations; native American tribal organizations, and nonprofit organizations that are recognized for their experience in fire prevention and safety programs and activities. The grant program’s authorizing statute requires that a minimum of 10 percent of available grant funds for AFG be expended for the FP&S Grant Program. Authority: 15 U.S.C. 2229. Grant applications for the FP&S Grant Program were accepted electronically at https://portal.fema.gov, from February 18–March 21, 2014. ADDRESSES: Assistance to Firefighters Grants Branch, Stop 3620, DHS/FEMA, 800 K Street NW., Washington, DC 20472–3620. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Catherine Patterson, Chief, Assistance to Firefighters Grants Branch, 1–866–274– 0960. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The purpose of the AFG Program is to enhance the safety of the public and firefighters with respect to fire and firerelated hazards. The FEMA Grant Programs Directorate administers the FP&S Grant Program as part of the AFG Program. FP&S Grants are offered to support projects in two activities: 1. Activities designed to reach highrisk target groups and mitigate the incidence of death and injuries caused by fire and fire-related hazards (‘‘FP&S Activity’’). 2. Projects aimed at improving firefighter safety, health and wellness through research and development that reduces firefighter fatalities and injuries (‘‘R&D Activity’’) The grant program’s authorizing statute requires that each year DHS publish in the Federal Register the tkelley on DSK3SPTVN1PROD with NOTICES DATES: VerDate Mar<15>2010 16:26 Apr 21, 2014 Jkt 232001 guidelines that describe the application process and the criteria for grant awards. Approximately 1,200 applications for FP&S Grant Program funding were submitted electronically, using the application submission form and process available at the AFG e-Grant application portal: https:// portal.fema.gov. Specific information about the submission of grant applications can be found in the ‘‘FY 2013 Fire Prevention and Safety Program Funding Opportunity Announcement,’’ which is available for download at www.fema.gov/firegrants and at www.regulations.gov under Docket ID FEMA–2014–0016. Appropriations Congress appropriated $320,920,083 for AFG in FY 2013 pursuant to the Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act, 2013, Public Law 113–6. From this amount, $32,092,008 will be made available for FP&S Grant awards, pursuant to 15 U.S.C. 2229(h)(5), which states that not less than 10 percent of available grant funds each year are awarded under the FP&S Grant Program. Funds appropriated for all FY 2013 AFG awards, pursuant to Public Law 113–6, will be available for obligation and award until September 30, 2014. From the approximately 1,200 applications that were submitted requesting assistance, FEMA anticipates that it will award approximately 250 FP&S Grants from available grant funding. Background of the AFG Program DHS awards grants on a competitive basis to the applicants that best address the FP&S Grant Program’s priorities and provide the most compelling justification. Applications that best address the Program’s priorities will be reviewed by a panel composed of fire service personnel. All applications for grants will be prepared and submitted through the AFG e-Grant application portal (https://portal.fema.gov). Award Criteria The FP&S Grant Program panels will review the applications and score them using the following criteria areas: • Vulnerability • Implementation • Evaluation Plan • Cost Benefit • Sustainability • Financial Need • Experience and Expertise (additional consideration) • Performance (additional consideration) PO 00000 Frm 00044 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 • Funding Priorities The applications submitted under the R&D Activity will be reviewed first by a panel of fire service members to identify those applications most relevant to the fire service, and then by technology and science experts. The following evaluation criteria will be used for each review: The Scientific Technical Evaluation Panel for the R&D Activity will review the application and evaluate it using the following criteria: • Project purpose(s), goals and objectives, and specific aims • Literature Review • Project Methods • Project Measurements • Project Analysis • Resources—People and Facilities • Dissemination and Implementation • Cost vs. Benefit (additional consideration) • Financial Need (additional consideration The Fire Service Technical Evaluation Panel for the R&D Activity will review the application and evaluate it using the following criteria: • Purpose • Potential Impact • Implementation by the fire service • Partners • Barriers Eligible Applicants The following entities are eligible to apply directly to FEMA under this solicitation: 1. Fire Prevention and Safety (FP&S) Activity: Eligible applicants for this activity include fire departments, national, regional, State, local, Native American tribal organizations, and nonprofit organizations that are recognized for their experience and expertise in fire prevention and safety programs and activities. Both private and public non-profit organizations are eligible to apply for funding in this activity. For-profit organizations, Federal agencies, and individuals are not eligible to receive a FP&S Grant Award under the F&S Activity. 2. Firefighter Safety Research and Development (R&D) Activity: Eligible applicants for this activity include national, State, local, Native American tribal organizations, and nonprofit organizations, such as academic (e.g., universities), public health, occupational health, and injury prevention institutions. Both private and public non-profit organizations are eligible to apply for funding in this activity. The aforementioned entities are encouraged to apply, especially those that are recognized for their experience E:\FR\FM\22APN1.SGM 22APN1 Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 77 / Tuesday, April 22, 2014 / Notices and expertise in firefighter safety, health, and wellness research and development activities. Under the grant program’s authorizing statute, fire departments are not eligible to apply for funding in the R&D activity. Additionally, for-profit organizations, Federal agencies, and individuals are not eligible to receive a grant award under the R&D Activity. tkelley on DSK3SPTVN1PROD with NOTICES Statutory Limits to Funding Applications and awards are limited to a maximum Federal share of $1.5 million dollars, regardless of applicant type. Cost Sharing Grantees must share in the costs of the projects funded under this grant program as required by 15 U.S.C. 2229(k)(1) and in accordance with 44 CFR 13.24 and 2 CFR 215.23, but they are not required to have the cost-share at the time of application nor at the time of award. However, before a grant is awarded, FEMA will contact potential awardees to determine whether the grantee has the funding in hand or if the grantee has a viable plan to obtain the funding necessary to fulfill the costsharing requirement. All eligible applicants must provide a cost match of 5 percent of non-Federal funds, unless the matching requirement is modified by a waiver, subject to waiver eligibility as described below. Cash match and in-kind matches are both allowable in the FP&S Grant Program. Cash (hard) matches include nonFederal cash spent for project-related costs. In-kind matches are allowable for the FP&S Grant Program. In-kind (soft) matches include, but are not limited to, the valuation of in-kind services. Inkind is the value of something received or provided that does not have a cost associated with it. For example, where an in-kind match (other than cash payments) is permitted, then the value of donated services could be used to comply with the match requirement. Also, third party in-kind contributions may count toward satisfying match requirements provided the grantee receiving the contributions expends them as allowable costs in compliance with provisions listed above. Grantees under this grant program must also agree to a maintenance of effort requirement as required by 15 U.S.C. 2229(k)(3) (referred to as a ‘‘maintenance of expenditure’’ requirement in that statute). Per this requirement, a grantee shall agree to maintain during the term of the grant the applicant’s aggregate expenditures relating to the activities allowable under VerDate Mar<15>2010 16:26 Apr 21, 2014 Jkt 232001 the FP&S Funding Opportunity Announcement at not less than 80 percent (80%) of the average amount of such expenditures in the two (2) fiscal years preceding the fiscal year in which the grant amounts are received. In cases of demonstrated economic hardship, and on the application of the grantee, the Administrator of FEMA may waive or reduce certain grantees’ cost share or maintenance of expenditure requirements. The Administrator of FEMA shall establish and publish guidelines for determining what constitutes economic hardship. Per 15 U.S.C. 2229(k)(4)(C), FP&S Grantees that are not fire departments are not eligible to receive a waiver of their cost share or economic hardship requirements. System for Award Management (SAM) On July 29, 2010, the Central Contractor Registration (CCR) was moved into the System for Award Management (SAM). The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) issued guidance to Federal agencies requiring all prime recipients of Federal grants to register in SAM. SAM is the primary vendor database for the Federal Government to collect, validate, store, and disseminate data from a secure centralized system. SAM consolidated the capabilities found in CCR and other Federal procurement systems into one new system. There is no charge to register in SAM.gov. Registrations must be completed on-line at https:// www.sam.gov/portal/public/SAM/. The applicant organization is responsibile for having a valid DUNS number at the time of registration. Organizations with an active record in CCR have an active record in SAM but may need to validate their information. For registration, go to https://www.sam.gov/portal/public/ SAM/. Application Process Applicants may only submit one (1) application, but may submit for up to three (3) projects under each activity (FP&S and R&D). Any applicant that submits more than one (1) application, and requests the same activities, may have all applications for any duplicated request(s) deemed ineligible. Under the FP&S Activity, applicants may apply under the following categories: • General Education/Awareness; • Fire & Arson Investigation; • Code Enforcement/Awareness; • National/State/Regional Programs and Studies. PO 00000 Frm 00045 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 22513 Under the R&D Activity, applicants may apply under the following categories: • Clinical Studies; • Technology and Product Development; • Database System Development; • Dissemination and Implementation Research; • Preliminary Studies. Prior to the start of the FY 2013 FP&S Grant Program application period, FEMA provided applicants with technical assistance tools (available at the AFG Web site: www.fema.gov/ firegrants) and other online information to help them prepare quality grant applications. AFG also staffed a Help Desk throughout the application period to assist applicants with navigation through the automated application as well as assistance with any questions they have. Applicants can reach the AFG Help Desk through a toll-free telephone number (1–866–274–0960) or electronic mail (firegrants@dhs.gov). Applicants were advised to access the application electronically at https:// portal.fema.gov. The application also was accessible from the grants.gov Web site (http://www.grants.gov). New applicants were required to register and establish a username and password for secure access to their application. Applicants that applied to any previous AFG funding opportunities were required to use their previously established usernames and passwords. In completing the application in the FP&S Activity, applicants are asked to provide relevant information on their organization’s characteristics and existing capabilities. Those applicants are asked to answer questions about their grant request that reflect the FP&S Activity funding priorities, described below. In addition, each applicant completed narratives for each project or grant activity requested. The following are the funding priorities for each category under the FP&S Activity: • General Education/Awareness— programs that target high risk population to conduct both door-to-door smoke alarm installations and provide home safety inspections (including sprinkler awareness), as part of a comprehensive home fire safety campaign. • Code Enforcement/Awareness— projects that focus on first time or reinstatement of code adoption and code enforcement. • Fire & Arson Investigation—projects that aim to investigate aggressively every fire. • National/State/Regional Programs and Studies—projects that focus on E:\FR\FM\22APN1.SGM 22APN1 22514 Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 77 / Tuesday, April 22, 2014 / Notices residential fire issues and/or firefighter behavior and decision-making. In completing an application under the R&D Activity, applicants are asked to provide relevant information on their organization’s characteristics and existing capabilities. Applicants are asked to answer questions about their grant request that reflect the R&D Activity funding priorities, which are described below. In addition, each applicant completed narratives for each project or grant activity requested. Under the R&D Activity, in order to identify and address the most important elements of firefighter safety, FEMA looked to the fire service for its input and recommendations. In June 2005, the National Fallen Firefighters’ Foundation (NFFF) hosted a working group to facilitate the development of an agenda for the nation’s fire service, and in particular for firefighter safety. In May 2011, the NFFF again hosted a working group to update the agenda with current priorities. A copy of the research agenda is available on the NFFF Web site at http://www.everyonegoeshome.com/ symposium.html. Projects that meet the intent of this research agenda with respect to firefighter health and safety, as identified by the NFFF working group, will be given consideration under the R&D Activity. However, the applicant is not limited to these specific projects. All proposed projects, regardless of whether they have been identified by this working group, will be evaluated on their relevance to firefighter health and safety and scientific rigor. The electronic application process will permit the applicant to enter and save the application data. The system does not permit the submission of incomplete applications. Except for the narrative textboxes, the application will use a ‘‘point-and-click’’ selection process or require the entry of data (e.g., name and address). Applicants will be encouraged to read the FP&S Funding Opportunity Announcement for more details. tkelley on DSK3SPTVN1PROD with NOTICES Criteria Development Process Each year, DHS convenes a panel of fire service professionals to develop the funding priorities and other implementation criteria for AFG. The Criteria Development Panel is comprised of representatives from nine major fire service organizations who are charged with making recommendations to FEMA regarding the creation of new funding priorities and the modification of existing funding priorities as well as developing criteria for awarding grants. The nine major fire service VerDate Mar<15>2010 16:26 Apr 21, 2014 Jkt 232001 organizations represented on the panel are: • Congressional Fire Services Institute (CFSI) • International Association of Arson Investigators (IAAI) • International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC) • International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF) • International Society of Fire Service Instructors (ISFSI) • National Association of State Fire Marshals (NASFM) • National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) • National Volunteer Fire Council (NVFC) • North American Fire Training Directors (NAFTD) The FY 2013 criteria development panel meeting occurred December 13– 14, 2012. The content of the FY 2013 FP&S Funding Opportunity Announcement reflects the implementation of the Criteria Development Panel’s recommendations with respect to the priorities, direction, and criteria for awards. All of the funding priorities for the FY 2013 FP&S Grant Program are designed to address the following: • • • • First responder safety Enhancing national capabilities Risk Interoperability Changes for FY 2013 FY 2013 FP&S Funding Opportunity Announcement (1) The ‘‘Guidance and Application Kit’’ has been reformatted to match the DHS Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) template. (2) A question was added to the application under the FP&S Activity to ascertain how the proposed project addresses prevention and survivability from fire. (3) Applications and awards are now limited to a maximum federal share of $1.5 million dollars, regardless of applicant type. In FY2012 the maximum federal share was $1 million dollars, regardless of applicant type. (4) The cost share requirement is now 5% for all eligible applicants for both FP&S and R&D Activities regardless of population size or applicant type. (5) Cash and in-kind cost matching is allowable in FY2013 whereas in FY2012 the only type of allowable match was cash. (6) The evaluation criteria under the R&D Activity have been modified and now clarifies that all applications will first be preliminarily evaluated by a fire PO 00000 Frm 00046 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 service panel and then those applications deemed ‘‘most relevant’’ will move forward to a scientific evaluation panel. Modifications under the scientific evaluation criteria include removing ‘‘Partners’’ as a criteria and moving it to be evaluated by the fire service panel. In addition, the weight of both the ‘‘project measurements’’ and ‘‘dissemination and implementation’’ criteria were then modified from ten percent to fifteen percent. Changes to Criteria Development Panel Recommendations DHS must explain any differences between the published guidelines and the recommendations made by the criteria development panel and publish this information in the Federal Register prior to making any grants under the Program (15 U.S.C. 2229(b)(14)). For FY 2013, DHS accepted and is implementing all of the Criteria Development Panel’s recommendations. Application Review Process and Considerations The program’s authorizing statute requires that each year DHS publish in the Federal Register a description of the grant application process and the criteria for grant awards. This information is provided below. DHS will review and evaluate all FP&S applications submitted using the funding priorities and evaluation criteria described in this document, which are based on recommendations from the AFG Criteria Development Panel. FEMA will rank all submitted applications based on how well they match the funding priorities for the type of community served. Answers to the application’s activity-specific questions provide information used to determine each application’s ranking relative to the stated priorities. Peer Review Process Technical Evaluation Process—Fire Prevention and Safety Activity All eligible applications will be evaluated by a Technical Evaluation Panel (TEP). The TEP is comprised of a panel of Peer Reviewers. The TEP will assess each application’s merits with respect to the detail provided in the Narrative Statement on the activity, including the evaluation elements listed in the Evaluation Criteria identified above. The panel of Peer Reviewers will independently score each project within the application, discuss the merits and/ or shortcomings of the application, and document the findings. A consensus is not required. The highest ranked E:\FR\FM\22APN1.SGM 22APN1 Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 77 / Tuesday, April 22, 2014 / Notices applications will receive further technical review to assess strengths and weaknesses, how readily weaknesses may be resolved, and the likely impact of the proposed activities on the safety of the target audience. tkelley on DSK3SPTVN1PROD with NOTICES Technical Evaluation Process—Research and Development Activity R&D applications will go through a two-phase review process. First, all applications will be reviewed by a panel of fire service experts to assess relevance, meaning the likely impact of the proposed R&D application to enable improvement in firefighter safety, health, or wellness. They will also assess the need for the research results and the likelihood that the results would be implemented by the fire service in the U.S. Applications that are deemed likely to be implemented to enable improvement in firefighter safety, health, or wellness will then receive further consideration by a science review panel. This panel will be comprised of scientists and technology experts who have expertise pertaining to the subject matter of the proposal. Reviewers will independently score applications and, if necessary, discuss the merits or shortcomings of the application in order to reconcile any major discrepancies identified by the reviewers. A consensus is not required. With input from these panels, for the highest ranked applications, FEMA will review each application’s strengths and weaknesses, how best the strengths fit the priorities of the FP&S Program, and how readily the weaknesses may be resolved to support likely impact of the project to improve firefighter safety, heath, or wellness. Technical Review Process Projects receiving the highest scores then will undergo a technical review by a subject matter specialist to assess the technical feasibility of the project and a programmatic review to assess eligibility and other factors. DHS generally makes funding decisions using rank order resulting from the panel evaluation. However, DHS may deviate from rank order and make funding decisions based on the type of department (career, combination, or volunteer) and/or the size and character of the community the applicant serves (urban, suburban, or rural) to the extent it is required to satisfy statutory provisions. After the completion of the technical reviews, DHS will select a sufficient number of awardees from this application period to obligate all of the available grant funding. It will evaluate and act on applications within 90 days VerDate Mar<15>2010 16:26 Apr 21, 2014 Jkt 232001 following the close of the application period. Award announcements will be made on a rolling basis until all available grant funds have been committed. Awards will not be made in any specified order. DHS will notify unsuccessful applicants as soon as it is feasible. Application Review Considerations The governing statute requires that each year DHS publish in the Federal Register a description of the grant application process and the criteria for grant awards. This information is provided below. Evaluation Criteria for Projects—Fire Prevention and Safety Activity Funding decisions will be informed by an assessment of how well the application addresses the criteria and considerations listed below. Applications will be reviewed by the TEP using weighted evaluation criteria to score the project. These scores will impact the ranking of a project for funding. The relative weight of the evaluation criteria in the determination of the grant award is listed below. • Vulnerability Statement (20%): The assessment of fire risk is essential in the development of an effective project goal, as well as meeting FEMA’s goal to reduce risk by conducting a risk analysis as a basis for action. Vulnerability is a ‘‘weak link’’ demonstrating high risk behavior, living conditions or any type of high risk situation or behavior. The Vulnerability Statement should include a description of the steps taken to determine the vulnerability (weak link) and identify the target audience. The methodology for determination of vulnerability (how you found the weak link) should be discussed in-depth in the application’s Narrative Statement. Æ The specific vulnerability (weak link) that will be addressed with the proposed project can be established through a formal or informal Risk Assessment. FEMA encourages the use of local statistics, rather than national statistics, when discussing the vulnerability. Æ The applicant should summarize the vulnerability (weakness) the project will address in a clear, to-the-point statement that addresses who is at risk, what the risks are, where the risks are and how the risks can be prevented. Æ For the purpose of the FY2013 FP&S FOA, formal Risk Assessments consist of the use of software programs or recognized expert analysis that assess risk trends. PO 00000 Frm 00047 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 22515 Æ Informal Risk Assessments could include an in-house review of available data (e.g., NFIRS) to determine fire loss, burn injuries or loss of life over a period of time, and the factors that are the cause and origin for each occurrence. • Implementation Plan (20%): Projects should provide details on the implementation plan which discusses the proposed project’s goals and objectives. The following information should be included to support the implementation plan: Æ Goals and objectives. Æ Details regarding the methods and specific steps that will be used to achieve the goals and objectives. Æ Timelines—place the project steps in the order they will be accomplished. Æ Where applicable, examples of marketing efforts to promote the project, who will deliver the project (e.g., effective partnerships), and the manner in which materials or deliverables will be distributed. Æ Requests for props (i.e., tools used in educational or awareness demonstrations), including specific goals, measurable results, and details on the frequency for which the prop will be utilized as part of the implementation plan. Applicants should include information describing the efforts that will be used to reach the high risk audience and/or the number of people reached through the proposed project (examples of props include safety trailers, puppets, robots, or portable safety houses). • Evaluation Plan (20%): Projects should include an evaluation of effectiveness and should identify measurable goals. Applicants seeking to carry out awareness and educational projects, for example, should identify how they intend to determine that there has been an increase in knowledge about fire hazards, or measure a change in the safety behaviors of the audience. Applicants should demonstrate how they will measure risk at the outset of the project in comparison to how much the risk decreased after the project is finished. There are various ways to measure the knowledge gained including the use of surveys, pre- and post-tests or documented observations. • Cost-Benefit (10%): Projects will be evaluated based on how well the applicant addresses the fire prevention needs of the department or organization in an economic and efficient manner. Show how to maximize the level of funding that goes directly into the delivery of the project. The costs associated with the project must also be reasonable for the target audience that will be reached and a description of how the anticipated benefit(s) of their E:\FR\FM\22APN1.SGM 22APN1 tkelley on DSK3SPTVN1PROD with NOTICES 22516 Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 77 / Tuesday, April 22, 2014 / Notices projects outweighs the cost(s) of the requested item(s) should be included. Providing justification for costs assists the Technical Evaluation Panel with this review. • Sustainability (15%): Each project will also be evaluated to determine whether the overall activity will be sustained (continued) beyond the grant performance period and whether it has a greater potential for long-term benefits. Examples of sustainable projects can be shown through the longterm benefits derived from the delivery of the project, the number of nonFederal partners likely to continue the effort, or the demonstrated long-term commitment of the applicant. • Financial Need (10%): Applicants should provide details on the need for financial assistance to carry out the proposed project(s). Included in the description might be other unsuccessful attempts to acquire financial assistance or specific examples of the applicant’s operational budget. • Funding Priorities (5%): Applicants will be evaluated on whether or not the proposed project meets the stated funding priority for the applicable category. Æ General Education/Awareness Priority: Comprehensive home fire safety campaign with door-to-door smoke alarm installations. Æ Fire/Arson Investigation Priority: Projects that aim to investigate aggressively every fire. Æ Code Enforcement/Awareness Priority: Projects that focus on first time or reinstatement of code adoption and code enforcement. Æ National/State/Regional Programs and Studies Priority: Projects that focus on residential fire issues and/or firefighter safety projects or strategies that are designed to measureable change firefighter behavior and decisionmaking. • Experience and Expertise (additional consideration): Applicants that demonstrate their experience and ability to conduct fire prevention and safety activities, and to execute the proposed or similar project(s), will receive additional consideration. • Performance (additional consideration): Applicants that have a proven track record for timely project completion and satisfactory performance in other AFG, FP&S, and SAFER Awards will receive additional consideration. • Meeting the needs of people with disabilities (additional consideration): Applicants in the General Education/ Awareness category will receive additional consideration if, as part of their comprehensive smoke alarm VerDate Mar<15>2010 16:26 Apr 21, 2014 Jkt 232001 installation and education program, they address the needs of people with disabilities (e.g., deaf/hard-of-hearing) in their community. Evaluation Criteria for Projects— Firefighter Safety Research and Development Activity Funding decisions will be informed by an assessment of how well the application addresses the criteria and considerations listed below. Applications will be reviewed by a fire service expert panel using weighted evaluation criteria and by a scientific peer review panel evaluation using weighted evaluation criteria to score the project. These scores will impact the ranking of a project for funding. In addition, other Science Panel considerations are indicated in the list below: Fire Service Evaluation Criteria • Purpose (25%): Clearly identify the vital firefighter safety and wellness issue(s) addressed by the project proposal that would benefit from additional research to fill in gaps in knowledge. • Potential Impact (15%): Discuss the potential impact of the research outcome/product on firefighter safety by quantifying the possible reduction in the number of fatal or non-fatal injuries or on wellness by significantly improving the overall health of firefighters. • Implementation by Fire Service (25%): Discuss how the outcomes/ products of this research, if successful, are likely to be widely/nationally adopted and accepted by the fire service as changes that enhance safety and wellness. • Partners (20%): Describe the fire service partners that will support the project to accomplish the objectives of the study. The specific roles and contributions of the partners to the project should be described. Partnerships may be formed with local and regional fire departments and also with national fire-related organizations. Because grants under the R&D Activity aim to improve the safety, health, and wellness of firefighters, having strong partnerships with the fire service is essential to the likely relevance and effectiveness of the project. Letters of support and letters of commitment to actively participate in the project should be included in the Appendix of the application. • Barriers (15%): The applicant needs to identify fire service and other potential barriers to the successful completion of the project and strategies PO 00000 Frm 00048 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 to overcome such barriers if they materialize. Science Panel Evaluation Criteria • Project goals, objectives, and specific aims (15%): Applicants need to address how the purpose, goals, objectives, and aims of the proposal will lead to results that will improve firefighter safety, health, and wellness. For multi-year projects, greater detail should be given for the first year. Also, describe the specific goals and objectives for the second and third year. • Literature Review (10%): With reference to the project’s goals, objectives, and specific aims, provide a literature review that includes citations in the text and references at the end of the Narrative Statement (and not in the Appendix) of the application. The review should be in sufficient depth to make it clear that the proposed project is necessary, adds to an existing body of knowledge, is different from current and previous studies, and offers a unique contribution. • Project Methods (20%): This is a description of how the project will be carried out, including demonstration of the overall scientific and technical rigor and merit of the project. This provides the operations to accomplish the purpose, goals and objectives, and the specific aims previously stated. Plans to recruit and retain human subjects, where applicable, should be described. Where human subjects are involved in the project, describe plans for submission to the Institutional Review Board (IRB). • Project Measurements (15%): Provide evidence of the technical rigor and merit of the project, such as data pertaining to validity, reliability, and sensitivity (where established) of the equipment, instruments, standards, and procedures that will be used to carry out the specific aims previously stated. Data is collected to evaluate the performance of methods, technologies, and products proposed to enhance firefighter safety, health, and wellness. Measurement methods and equipment selected for use should be appropriate and sufficient to the project objectives. • Project Analysis (10%): Indicate the planned approach for analysis of the data obtained from measurements, questionnaires, or computations. Specify within the plan what will be analyzed, the statistical methods that will be used, the sequence of steps, and interactions as appropriate. It should be clear that the Principal Investigator (PI) and research team have the expertise to perform the planned analysis and defend the results in a peer review process. E:\FR\FM\22APN1.SGM 22APN1 Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 77 / Tuesday, April 22, 2014 / Notices tkelley on DSK3SPTVN1PROD with NOTICES • Resources—People and Facilities (15%): Describe the strengths of the PI, the lead scientists, and other staff of the research and development team, especially with regard to similar R&D Activities, studies involving the fire service, and successful completion of prior grant-funded research and development. Also describe the institutional resources (e.g., labs, experimental facilities) to be used to support and carry out the proposed project. Emphasis should be given to unique people and facilities that contribute substantially to the project in addition to past fire service research. • Dissemination and Implementation (15%): Indicate dissemination plans for scientific audiences (such as plans for submissions to specific peer review publications) and for firefighter audiences (such as via Web sites, magazines, and conferences). Also, assuming positive results and where applicable, indicate future steps that would support dissemination and implementation throughout the fire service. These are likely to be beyond the current study, so those features of the research activity that will facilitate future dissemination and implementation should be discussed. All applicants should specify how the results of the project, if successful, might be disseminated and implemented in the fire service to improve firefighter safety, health, and wellness, especially in the short term. It is expected that successful R&D Activity Projects may give rise to future programs including FP&S Activity Projects. • Cost vs. Benefit (additional consideration): Cost vs. benefit in this evaluation element refers to the costs of the grant for the research and development project vs. the benefits that are projected for firefighters who would have improved safety, health, and wellness. Projects will be evaluated on the extent to which they demonstrate a high benefit for the cost incurred. • Financial Need (additional consideration): In the Narrative Statement, applicants should provide details on the need for federal financial assistance to carry out the proposed project(s). Other Selection Information Awards will be made using the results of peer-reviewed applications as the primary basis for decisions, regardless of activity. However, there are some exceptions to strictly using the peer review results. Fire departments and other eligible applicants that have received funding under the FP&S program in previous VerDate Mar<15>2010 16:26 Apr 21, 2014 Jkt 232001 years are eligible to apply for funding in the current year. However, DHS may take into account an applicant’s performance on prior grants when making funding decisions on current applications. Once every application in the competitive range has been through the technical evaluation phase, the applications will be ranked according to the average score awarded by the panel. The ranking will be summarized in a Technical Report prepared by the AFG Program Office. A Grants Management Specialist will contact the applicant to discuss and/or negotiate the content of the application and SAM.gov registration before making final award decisions. Dated: April 11, 2014. W. Craig Fugate, Administrator, Federal Emergency Management Agency. [FR Doc. 2014–09179 Filed 4–21–14; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 9111–64–P DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Federal Emergency Management Agency [Docket ID FEMA–2014–0002; Internal Agency Docket No. FEMA–B–1406] Changes in Flood Hazard Determinations Federal Emergency Management Agency, DHS. ACTION: Notice. AGENCY: This notice lists communities where the addition or modification of Base Flood Elevations (BFEs), base flood depths, Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA) boundaries or zone designations, or the regulatory floodway (hereinafter referred to as flood hazard determinations), as shown on the Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs), and where applicable, in the supporting Flood Insurance Study (FIS) reports, prepared by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for each community, is appropriate because of new scientific or technical data. The FIRM, and where applicable, portions of the FIS report, have been revised to reflect these flood hazard determinations through issuance of a Letter of Map Revision (LOMR), in accordance with Title 44, Part 65 of the Code of Federal Regulations (44 CFR Part 65). The LOMR will be used by insurance agents and others to calculate appropriate flood insurance premium rates for new buildings and the contents of those buildings. For rating purposes, SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00049 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 22517 the currently effective community number is shown in the table below and must be used for all new policies and renewals. These flood hazard determinations will become effective on the dates listed in the table below and revise the FIRM panels and FIS report in effect prior to this determination for the listed communities. From the date of the second publication of notification of these changes in a newspaper of local circulation, any person has ninety (90) days in which to request through the community that the Deputy Associate Administrator for Mitigation reconsider the changes. The flood hazard determination information may be changed during the 90-day period. ADDRESSES: The affected communities are listed in the table below. Revised flood hazard information for each community is available for inspection at both the online location and the respective community map repository address listed in the table below. Additionally, the current effective FIRM and FIS report for each community are accessible online through the FEMA Map Service Center at www.msc.fema.gov for comparison. Submit comments and/or appeals to the Chief Executive Officer of the community as listed in the table below. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Luis Rodriguez, Chief, Engineering Management Branch, Federal Insurance and Mitigation Administration, FEMA, 500 C Street SW., Washington, DC 20472, (202) 646–4064, or (email) Luis.Rodriguez3@fema.dhs.gov; or visit the FEMA Map Information eXchange (FMIX) online at www.floodmaps.fema.gov/fhm/fmx_ main.html. DATES: The specific flood hazard determinations are not described for each community in this notice. However, the online location and local community map repository address where the flood hazard determination information is available for inspection is provided. Any request for reconsideration of flood hazard determinations must be submitted to the Chief Executive Officer of the community as listed in the table below. The modifications are made pursuant to section 201 of the Flood Disaster Protection Act of 1973, 42 U.S.C. 4105, and are in accordance with the National Flood Insurance Act of 1968, 42 U.S.C. 4001 et seq., and with 44 CFR Part 65. The FIRM and FIS report are the basis of the floodplain management measures SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: E:\FR\FM\22APN1.SGM 22APN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 79, Number 77 (Tuesday, April 22, 2014)]
[Notices]
[Pages 22511-22517]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2014-09179]


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DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY

Federal Emergency Management Agency

[Docket ID FEMA-2014-0016]


Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program; Fire Prevention and 
Safety Grants

AGENCY: Federal Emergency Management Agency, DHS.

ACTION: Notice of guidance.

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SUMMARY: This Notice provides guidelines that describe the application 
process for grants and the criteria for awarding Fire Prevention and 
Safety (FP&S) grants in the fiscal year (FY) 2013 Assistance to 
Firefighters Grant (AFG) Program year. It explains the differences, if 
any, between these guidelines and those recommended by representatives 
of the Nation's fire service leadership during the annual Criteria 
Development meeting, which was held December 13-14, 2012. The 
application period for the FY 2013 FP&S Grant Program year was held 
February 18-March 21, 2014, and was announced on www.grants.gov. 
Approximately

[[Page 22512]]

1,200 applications for FP&S Grant Program funding were submitted 
electronically, using the application submission form and process 
available at https://portal.fema.gov. The ``FY 2013 Fire Prevention and 
Safety Program Funding Opportunity Announcement'' was published on the 
AFG Web site (www.fema.gov/firegrants). Additional information to 
assist applicants was provided on the AFG Web site, including an 
applicant tutorial, list of frequently asked questions, a ``Get Ready 
Guide, and a Quick Reference Guide.'' The FP&S Grant Program is 
composed of two eligible activities; the Fire Prevention and Safety 
(FP&S) Activity and Firefighter Research and Development (R&D) 
Activity. FP&S Grants are made available directly to fire departments; 
national, regional, state, and local organizations; native American 
tribal organizations, and nonprofit organizations that are recognized 
for their experience in fire prevention and safety programs and 
activities. The grant program's authorizing statute requires that a 
minimum of 10 percent of available grant funds for AFG be expended for 
the FP&S Grant Program.

    Authority: 15 U.S.C. 2229.


DATES: Grant applications for the FP&S Grant Program were accepted 
electronically at https://portal.fema.gov, from February 18-March 21, 
2014.

ADDRESSES: Assistance to Firefighters Grants Branch, Stop 3620, DHS/
FEMA, 800 K Street NW., Washington, DC 20472-3620.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Catherine Patterson, Chief, Assistance 
to Firefighters Grants Branch, 1-866-274-0960.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The purpose of the AFG Program is to enhance 
the safety of the public and firefighters with respect to fire and 
fire-related hazards. The FEMA Grant Programs Directorate administers 
the FP&S Grant Program as part of the AFG Program.
    FP&S Grants are offered to support projects in two activities:
    1. Activities designed to reach high-risk target groups and 
mitigate the incidence of death and injuries caused by fire and fire-
related hazards (``FP&S Activity'').
    2. Projects aimed at improving firefighter safety, health and 
wellness through research and development that reduces firefighter 
fatalities and injuries (``R&D Activity'')
    The grant program's authorizing statute requires that each year DHS 
publish in the Federal Register the guidelines that describe the 
application process and the criteria for grant awards.
    Approximately 1,200 applications for FP&S Grant Program funding 
were submitted electronically, using the application submission form 
and process available at the AFG e-Grant application portal: https://portal.fema.gov. Specific information about the submission of grant 
applications can be found in the ``FY 2013 Fire Prevention and Safety 
Program Funding Opportunity Announcement,'' which is available for 
download at www.fema.gov/firegrants and at www.regulations.gov under 
Docket ID FEMA-2014-0016.

Appropriations

    Congress appropriated $320,920,083 for AFG in FY 2013 pursuant to 
the Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act, 2013, Public 
Law 113-6. From this amount, $32,092,008 will be made available for 
FP&S Grant awards, pursuant to 15 U.S.C. 2229(h)(5), which states that 
not less than 10 percent of available grant funds each year are awarded 
under the FP&S Grant Program. Funds appropriated for all FY 2013 AFG 
awards, pursuant to Public Law 113-6, will be available for obligation 
and award until September 30, 2014.
    From the approximately 1,200 applications that were submitted 
requesting assistance, FEMA anticipates that it will award 
approximately 250 FP&S Grants from available grant funding.

Background of the AFG Program

    DHS awards grants on a competitive basis to the applicants that 
best address the FP&S Grant Program's priorities and provide the most 
compelling justification. Applications that best address the Program's 
priorities will be reviewed by a panel composed of fire service 
personnel. All applications for grants will be prepared and submitted 
through the AFG e-Grant application portal (https://portal.fema.gov).

Award Criteria

    The FP&S Grant Program panels will review the applications and 
score them using the following criteria areas:

 Vulnerability
 Implementation
 Evaluation Plan
 Cost Benefit
 Sustainability
 Financial Need
 Experience and Expertise (additional consideration)
 Performance (additional consideration)
 Funding Priorities
    The applications submitted under the R&D Activity will be reviewed 
first by a panel of fire service members to identify those applications 
most relevant to the fire service, and then by technology and science 
experts. The following evaluation criteria will be used for each 
review:
    The Scientific Technical Evaluation Panel for the R&D Activity will 
review the application and evaluate it using the following criteria:

 Project purpose(s), goals and objectives, and specific aims
 Literature Review
 Project Methods
 Project Measurements
 Project Analysis
 Resources--People and Facilities
 Dissemination and Implementation
 Cost vs. Benefit (additional consideration)
 Financial Need (additional consideration
    The Fire Service Technical Evaluation Panel for the R&D Activity 
will review the application and evaluate it using the following 
criteria:
 Purpose
 Potential Impact
 Implementation by the fire service
 Partners
 Barriers

Eligible Applicants

    The following entities are eligible to apply directly to FEMA under 
this solicitation:
    1. Fire Prevention and Safety (FP&S) Activity: Eligible applicants 
for this activity include fire departments, national, regional, State, 
local, Native American tribal organizations, and nonprofit 
organizations that are recognized for their experience and expertise in 
fire prevention and safety programs and activities. Both private and 
public non-profit organizations are eligible to apply for funding in 
this activity. For-profit organizations, Federal agencies, and 
individuals are not eligible to receive a FP&S Grant Award under the 
F&S Activity.
    2. Firefighter Safety Research and Development (R&D) Activity: 
Eligible applicants for this activity include national, State, local, 
Native American tribal organizations, and nonprofit organizations, such 
as academic (e.g., universities), public health, occupational health, 
and injury prevention institutions. Both private and public non-profit 
organizations are eligible to apply for funding in this activity.
    The aforementioned entities are encouraged to apply, especially 
those that are recognized for their experience

[[Page 22513]]

and expertise in firefighter safety, health, and wellness research and 
development activities. Under the grant program's authorizing statute, 
fire departments are not eligible to apply for funding in the R&D 
activity. Additionally, for-profit organizations, Federal agencies, and 
individuals are not eligible to receive a grant award under the R&D 
Activity.

Statutory Limits to Funding

    Applications and awards are limited to a maximum Federal share of 
$1.5 million dollars, regardless of applicant type.

Cost Sharing

    Grantees must share in the costs of the projects funded under this 
grant program as required by 15 U.S.C. 2229(k)(1) and in accordance 
with 44 CFR 13.24 and 2 CFR 215.23, but they are not required to have 
the cost-share at the time of application nor at the time of award. 
However, before a grant is awarded, FEMA will contact potential 
awardees to determine whether the grantee has the funding in hand or if 
the grantee has a viable plan to obtain the funding necessary to 
fulfill the cost-sharing requirement.
    All eligible applicants must provide a cost match of 5 percent of 
non-Federal funds, unless the matching requirement is modified by a 
waiver, subject to waiver eligibility as described below. Cash match 
and in-kind matches are both allowable in the FP&S Grant Program.
    Cash (hard) matches include non-Federal cash spent for project-
related costs. In-kind matches are allowable for the FP&S Grant 
Program. In-kind (soft) matches include, but are not limited to, the 
valuation of in-kind services. In-kind is the value of something 
received or provided that does not have a cost associated with it. For 
example, where an in-kind match (other than cash payments) is 
permitted, then the value of donated services could be used to comply 
with the match requirement. Also, third party in-kind contributions may 
count toward satisfying match requirements provided the grantee 
receiving the contributions expends them as allowable costs in 
compliance with provisions listed above.
    Grantees under this grant program must also agree to a maintenance 
of effort requirement as required by 15 U.S.C. 2229(k)(3) (referred to 
as a ``maintenance of expenditure'' requirement in that statute). Per 
this requirement, a grantee shall agree to maintain during the term of 
the grant the applicant's aggregate expenditures relating to the 
activities allowable under the FP&S Funding Opportunity Announcement at 
not less than 80 percent (80%) of the average amount of such 
expenditures in the two (2) fiscal years preceding the fiscal year in 
which the grant amounts are received.
    In cases of demonstrated economic hardship, and on the application 
of the grantee, the Administrator of FEMA may waive or reduce certain 
grantees' cost share or maintenance of expenditure requirements. The 
Administrator of FEMA shall establish and publish guidelines for 
determining what constitutes economic hardship. Per 15 U.S.C. 
2229(k)(4)(C), FP&S Grantees that are not fire departments are not 
eligible to receive a waiver of their cost share or economic hardship 
requirements.

System for Award Management (SAM)

    On July 29, 2010, the Central Contractor Registration (CCR) was 
moved into the System for Award Management (SAM). The Office of 
Management and Budget (OMB) issued guidance to Federal agencies 
requiring all prime recipients of Federal grants to register in SAM. 
SAM is the primary vendor database for the Federal Government to 
collect, validate, store, and disseminate data from a secure 
centralized system. SAM consolidated the capabilities found in CCR and 
other Federal procurement systems into one new system.
    There is no charge to register in SAM.gov. Registrations must be 
completed on-line at https://www.sam.gov/portal/public/SAM/. The 
applicant organization is responsibile for having a valid DUNS number 
at the time of registration. Organizations with an active record in CCR 
have an active record in SAM but may need to validate their 
information. For registration, go to https://www.sam.gov/portal/public/SAM/.

Application Process

    Applicants may only submit one (1) application, but may submit for 
up to three (3) projects under each activity (FP&S and R&D). Any 
applicant that submits more than one (1) application, and requests the 
same activities, may have all applications for any duplicated 
request(s) deemed ineligible.
    Under the FP&S Activity, applicants may apply under the following 
categories:
     General Education/Awareness;
     Fire & Arson Investigation;
     Code Enforcement/Awareness;
     National/State/Regional Programs and Studies.
    Under the R&D Activity, applicants may apply under the following 
categories:
     Clinical Studies;
     Technology and Product Development;
     Database System Development;
     Dissemination and Implementation Research;
     Preliminary Studies.
    Prior to the start of the FY 2013 FP&S Grant Program application 
period, FEMA provided applicants with technical assistance tools 
(available at the AFG Web site: www.fema.gov/firegrants) and other 
online information to help them prepare quality grant applications. AFG 
also staffed a Help Desk throughout the application period to assist 
applicants with navigation through the automated application as well as 
assistance with any questions they have. Applicants can reach the AFG 
Help Desk through a toll-free telephone number (1-866-274-0960) or 
electronic mail (firegrants@dhs.gov).
    Applicants were advised to access the application electronically at 
https://portal.fema.gov. The application also was accessible from the 
grants.gov Web site (http://www.grants.gov). New applicants were 
required to register and establish a username and password for secure 
access to their application. Applicants that applied to any previous 
AFG funding opportunities were required to use their previously 
established usernames and passwords.
    In completing the application in the FP&S Activity, applicants are 
asked to provide relevant information on their organization's 
characteristics and existing capabilities. Those applicants are asked 
to answer questions about their grant request that reflect the FP&S 
Activity funding priorities, described below. In addition, each 
applicant completed narratives for each project or grant activity 
requested.
    The following are the funding priorities for each category under 
the FP&S Activity:
     General Education/Awareness--programs that target high 
risk population to conduct both door-to-door smoke alarm installations 
and provide home safety inspections (including sprinkler awareness), as 
part of a comprehensive home fire safety campaign.
     Code Enforcement/Awareness--projects that focus on first 
time or reinstatement of code adoption and code enforcement.
     Fire & Arson Investigation--projects that aim to 
investigate aggressively every fire.
     National/State/Regional Programs and Studies--projects 
that focus on

[[Page 22514]]

residential fire issues and/or firefighter behavior and decision-
making.
    In completing an application under the R&D Activity, applicants are 
asked to provide relevant information on their organization's 
characteristics and existing capabilities. Applicants are asked to 
answer questions about their grant request that reflect the R&D 
Activity funding priorities, which are described below. In addition, 
each applicant completed narratives for each project or grant activity 
requested.
    Under the R&D Activity, in order to identify and address the most 
important elements of firefighter safety, FEMA looked to the fire 
service for its input and recommendations. In June 2005, the National 
Fallen Firefighters' Foundation (NFFF) hosted a working group to 
facilitate the development of an agenda for the nation's fire service, 
and in particular for firefighter safety. In May 2011, the NFFF again 
hosted a working group to update the agenda with current priorities. A 
copy of the research agenda is available on the NFFF Web site at http://www.everyonegoeshome.com/symposium.html.
    Projects that meet the intent of this research agenda with respect 
to firefighter health and safety, as identified by the NFFF working 
group, will be given consideration under the R&D Activity. However, the 
applicant is not limited to these specific projects. All proposed 
projects, regardless of whether they have been identified by this 
working group, will be evaluated on their relevance to firefighter 
health and safety and scientific rigor.
    The electronic application process will permit the applicant to 
enter and save the application data. The system does not permit the 
submission of incomplete applications. Except for the narrative 
textboxes, the application will use a ``point-and-click'' selection 
process or require the entry of data (e.g., name and address). 
Applicants will be encouraged to read the FP&S Funding Opportunity 
Announcement for more details.

Criteria Development Process

    Each year, DHS convenes a panel of fire service professionals to 
develop the funding priorities and other implementation criteria for 
AFG. The Criteria Development Panel is comprised of representatives 
from nine major fire service organizations who are charged with making 
recommendations to FEMA regarding the creation of new funding 
priorities and the modification of existing funding priorities as well 
as developing criteria for awarding grants. The nine major fire service 
organizations represented on the panel are:

 Congressional Fire Services Institute (CFSI)
 International Association of Arson Investigators (IAAI)
 International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC)
 International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF)
 International Society of Fire Service Instructors (ISFSI)
 National Association of State Fire Marshals (NASFM)
 National Fire Protection Association (NFPA)
 National Volunteer Fire Council (NVFC)
 North American Fire Training Directors (NAFTD)

    The FY 2013 criteria development panel meeting occurred December 
13-14, 2012. The content of the FY 2013 FP&S Funding Opportunity 
Announcement reflects the implementation of the Criteria Development 
Panel's recommendations with respect to the priorities, direction, and 
criteria for awards. All of the funding priorities for the FY 2013 FP&S 
Grant Program are designed to address the following:

 First responder safety
 Enhancing national capabilities
 Risk
 Interoperability

Changes for FY 2013

FY 2013 FP&S Funding Opportunity Announcement

    (1) The ``Guidance and Application Kit'' has been reformatted to 
match the DHS Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) template.
    (2) A question was added to the application under the FP&S Activity 
to ascertain how the proposed project addresses prevention and 
survivability from fire.
    (3) Applications and awards are now limited to a maximum federal 
share of $1.5 million dollars, regardless of applicant type. In FY2012 
the maximum federal share was $1 million dollars, regardless of 
applicant type.
    (4) The cost share requirement is now 5% for all eligible 
applicants for both FP&S and R&D Activities regardless of population 
size or applicant type.
    (5) Cash and in-kind cost matching is allowable in FY2013 whereas 
in FY2012 the only type of allowable match was cash.
    (6) The evaluation criteria under the R&D Activity have been 
modified and now clarifies that all applications will first be 
preliminarily evaluated by a fire service panel and then those 
applications deemed ``most relevant'' will move forward to a scientific 
evaluation panel. Modifications under the scientific evaluation 
criteria include removing ``Partners'' as a criteria and moving it to 
be evaluated by the fire service panel. In addition, the weight of both 
the ``project measurements'' and ``dissemination and implementation'' 
criteria were then modified from ten percent to fifteen percent.

Changes to Criteria Development Panel Recommendations

    DHS must explain any differences between the published guidelines 
and the recommendations made by the criteria development panel and 
publish this information in the Federal Register prior to making any 
grants under the Program (15 U.S.C. 2229(b)(14)). For FY 2013, DHS 
accepted and is implementing all of the Criteria Development Panel's 
recommendations.

Application Review Process and Considerations

    The program's authorizing statute requires that each year DHS 
publish in the Federal Register a description of the grant application 
process and the criteria for grant awards. This information is provided 
below.
    DHS will review and evaluate all FP&S applications submitted using 
the funding priorities and evaluation criteria described in this 
document, which are based on recommendations from the AFG Criteria 
Development Panel. FEMA will rank all submitted applications based on 
how well they match the funding priorities for the type of community 
served. Answers to the application's activity-specific questions 
provide information used to determine each application's ranking 
relative to the stated priorities.

Peer Review Process

Technical Evaluation Process--Fire Prevention and Safety Activity
    All eligible applications will be evaluated by a Technical 
Evaluation Panel (TEP). The TEP is comprised of a panel of Peer 
Reviewers. The TEP will assess each application's merits with respect 
to the detail provided in the Narrative Statement on the activity, 
including the evaluation elements listed in the Evaluation Criteria 
identified above.
    The panel of Peer Reviewers will independently score each project 
within the application, discuss the merits and/or shortcomings of the 
application, and document the findings. A consensus is not required. 
The highest ranked

[[Page 22515]]

applications will receive further technical review to assess strengths 
and weaknesses, how readily weaknesses may be resolved, and the likely 
impact of the proposed activities on the safety of the target audience.
Technical Evaluation Process--Research and Development Activity
    R&D applications will go through a two-phase review process. First, 
all applications will be reviewed by a panel of fire service experts to 
assess relevance, meaning the likely impact of the proposed R&D 
application to enable improvement in firefighter safety, health, or 
wellness. They will also assess the need for the research results and 
the likelihood that the results would be implemented by the fire 
service in the U.S. Applications that are deemed likely to be 
implemented to enable improvement in firefighter safety, health, or 
wellness will then receive further consideration by a science review 
panel. This panel will be comprised of scientists and technology 
experts who have expertise pertaining to the subject matter of the 
proposal.
    Reviewers will independently score applications and, if necessary, 
discuss the merits or shortcomings of the application in order to 
reconcile any major discrepancies identified by the reviewers. A 
consensus is not required.
    With input from these panels, for the highest ranked applications, 
FEMA will review each application's strengths and weaknesses, how best 
the strengths fit the priorities of the FP&S Program, and how readily 
the weaknesses may be resolved to support likely impact of the project 
to improve firefighter safety, heath, or wellness.
Technical Review Process
    Projects receiving the highest scores then will undergo a technical 
review by a subject matter specialist to assess the technical 
feasibility of the project and a programmatic review to assess 
eligibility and other factors.
    DHS generally makes funding decisions using rank order resulting 
from the panel evaluation. However, DHS may deviate from rank order and 
make funding decisions based on the type of department (career, 
combination, or volunteer) and/or the size and character of the 
community the applicant serves (urban, suburban, or rural) to the 
extent it is required to satisfy statutory provisions.
    After the completion of the technical reviews, DHS will select a 
sufficient number of awardees from this application period to obligate 
all of the available grant funding. It will evaluate and act on 
applications within 90 days following the close of the application 
period. Award announcements will be made on a rolling basis until all 
available grant funds have been committed. Awards will not be made in 
any specified order. DHS will notify unsuccessful applicants as soon as 
it is feasible.

Application Review Considerations

    The governing statute requires that each year DHS publish in the 
Federal Register a description of the grant application process and the 
criteria for grant awards. This information is provided below.

Evaluation Criteria for Projects--Fire Prevention and Safety Activity

    Funding decisions will be informed by an assessment of how well the 
application addresses the criteria and considerations listed below. 
Applications will be reviewed by the TEP using weighted evaluation 
criteria to score the project. These scores will impact the ranking of 
a project for funding.
    The relative weight of the evaluation criteria in the determination 
of the grant award is listed below.
     Vulnerability Statement (20%): The assessment of fire risk 
is essential in the development of an effective project goal, as well 
as meeting FEMA's goal to reduce risk by conducting a risk analysis as 
a basis for action. Vulnerability is a ``weak link'' demonstrating high 
risk behavior, living conditions or any type of high risk situation or 
behavior. The Vulnerability Statement should include a description of 
the steps taken to determine the vulnerability (weak link) and identify 
the target audience. The methodology for determination of vulnerability 
(how you found the weak link) should be discussed in-depth in the 
application's Narrative Statement.
    [cir] The specific vulnerability (weak link) that will be addressed 
with the proposed project can be established through a formal or 
informal Risk Assessment. FEMA encourages the use of local statistics, 
rather than national statistics, when discussing the vulnerability.
    [cir] The applicant should summarize the vulnerability (weakness) 
the project will address in a clear, to-the-point statement that 
addresses who is at risk, what the risks are, where the risks are and 
how the risks can be prevented.
    [cir] For the purpose of the FY2013 FP&S FOA, formal Risk 
Assessments consist of the use of software programs or recognized 
expert analysis that assess risk trends.
    [cir] Informal Risk Assessments could include an in-house review of 
available data (e.g., NFIRS) to determine fire loss, burn injuries or 
loss of life over a period of time, and the factors that are the cause 
and origin for each occurrence.
     Implementation Plan (20%): Projects should provide details 
on the implementation plan which discusses the proposed project's goals 
and objectives. The following information should be included to support 
the implementation plan:
    [cir] Goals and objectives.
    [cir] Details regarding the methods and specific steps that will be 
used to achieve the goals and objectives.
    [cir] Timelines--place the project steps in the order they will be 
accomplished.
    [cir] Where applicable, examples of marketing efforts to promote 
the project, who will deliver the project (e.g., effective 
partnerships), and the manner in which materials or deliverables will 
be distributed.
    [cir] Requests for props (i.e., tools used in educational or 
awareness demonstrations), including specific goals, measurable 
results, and details on the frequency for which the prop will be 
utilized as part of the implementation plan. Applicants should include 
information describing the efforts that will be used to reach the high 
risk audience and/or the number of people reached through the proposed 
project (examples of props include safety trailers, puppets, robots, or 
portable safety houses).
     Evaluation Plan (20%): Projects should include an 
evaluation of effectiveness and should identify measurable goals. 
Applicants seeking to carry out awareness and educational projects, for 
example, should identify how they intend to determine that there has 
been an increase in knowledge about fire hazards, or measure a change 
in the safety behaviors of the audience. Applicants should demonstrate 
how they will measure risk at the outset of the project in comparison 
to how much the risk decreased after the project is finished. There are 
various ways to measure the knowledge gained including the use of 
surveys, pre- and post-tests or documented observations.
     Cost-Benefit (10%): Projects will be evaluated based on 
how well the applicant addresses the fire prevention needs of the 
department or organization in an economic and efficient manner. Show 
how to maximize the level of funding that goes directly into the 
delivery of the project. The costs associated with the project must 
also be reasonable for the target audience that will be reached and a 
description of how the anticipated benefit(s) of their

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projects outweighs the cost(s) of the requested item(s) should be 
included. Providing justification for costs assists the Technical 
Evaluation Panel with this review.
     Sustainability (15%): Each project will also be evaluated 
to determine whether the overall activity will be sustained (continued) 
beyond the grant performance period and whether it has a greater 
potential for long-term benefits. Examples of sustainable projects can 
be shown through the long-term benefits derived from the delivery of 
the project, the number of non-Federal partners likely to continue the 
effort, or the demonstrated long-term commitment of the applicant.
     Financial Need (10%): Applicants should provide details on 
the need for financial assistance to carry out the proposed project(s). 
Included in the description might be other unsuccessful attempts to 
acquire financial assistance or specific examples of the applicant's 
operational budget.
     Funding Priorities (5%): Applicants will be evaluated on 
whether or not the proposed project meets the stated funding priority 
for the applicable category.
    [cir] General Education/Awareness Priority: Comprehensive home fire 
safety campaign with door-to-door smoke alarm installations.
    [cir] Fire/Arson Investigation Priority: Projects that aim to 
investigate aggressively every fire.
    [cir] Code Enforcement/Awareness Priority: Projects that focus on 
first time or reinstatement of code adoption and code enforcement.
    [cir] National/State/Regional Programs and Studies Priority: 
Projects that focus on residential fire issues and/or firefighter 
safety projects or strategies that are designed to measureable change 
firefighter behavior and decision-making.
     Experience and Expertise (additional consideration): 
Applicants that demonstrate their experience and ability to conduct 
fire prevention and safety activities, and to execute the proposed or 
similar project(s), will receive additional consideration.
     Performance (additional consideration): Applicants that 
have a proven track record for timely project completion and 
satisfactory performance in other AFG, FP&S, and SAFER Awards will 
receive additional consideration.
     Meeting the needs of people with disabilities (additional 
consideration): Applicants in the General Education/Awareness category 
will receive additional consideration if, as part of their 
comprehensive smoke alarm installation and education program, they 
address the needs of people with disabilities (e.g., deaf/hard-of-
hearing) in their community.

Evaluation Criteria for Projects--Firefighter Safety Research and 
Development Activity

    Funding decisions will be informed by an assessment of how well the 
application addresses the criteria and considerations listed below. 
Applications will be reviewed by a fire service expert panel using 
weighted evaluation criteria and by a scientific peer review panel 
evaluation using weighted evaluation criteria to score the project. 
These scores will impact the ranking of a project for funding. In 
addition, other Science Panel considerations are indicated in the list 
below:

Fire Service Evaluation Criteria

     Purpose (25%): Clearly identify the vital firefighter 
safety and wellness issue(s) addressed by the project proposal that 
would benefit from additional research to fill in gaps in knowledge.
     Potential Impact (15%): Discuss the potential impact of 
the research outcome/product on firefighter safety by quantifying the 
possible reduction in the number of fatal or non-fatal injuries or on 
wellness by significantly improving the overall health of firefighters.
     Implementation by Fire Service (25%): Discuss how the 
outcomes/products of this research, if successful, are likely to be 
widely/nationally adopted and accepted by the fire service as changes 
that enhance safety and wellness.
     Partners (20%): Describe the fire service partners that 
will support the project to accomplish the objectives of the study. The 
specific roles and contributions of the partners to the project should 
be described. Partnerships may be formed with local and regional fire 
departments and also with national fire-related organizations. Because 
grants under the R&D Activity aim to improve the safety, health, and 
wellness of firefighters, having strong partnerships with the fire 
service is essential to the likely relevance and effectiveness of the 
project. Letters of support and letters of commitment to actively 
participate in the project should be included in the Appendix of the 
application.
     Barriers (15%): The applicant needs to identify fire 
service and other potential barriers to the successful completion of 
the project and strategies to overcome such barriers if they 
materialize.

Science Panel Evaluation Criteria

     Project goals, objectives, and specific aims (15%): 
Applicants need to address how the purpose, goals, objectives, and aims 
of the proposal will lead to results that will improve firefighter 
safety, health, and wellness. For multi-year projects, greater detail 
should be given for the first year. Also, describe the specific goals 
and objectives for the second and third year.
     Literature Review (10%): With reference to the project's 
goals, objectives, and specific aims, provide a literature review that 
includes citations in the text and references at the end of the 
Narrative Statement (and not in the Appendix) of the application. The 
review should be in sufficient depth to make it clear that the proposed 
project is necessary, adds to an existing body of knowledge, is 
different from current and previous studies, and offers a unique 
contribution.
     Project Methods (20%): This is a description of how the 
project will be carried out, including demonstration of the overall 
scientific and technical rigor and merit of the project. This provides 
the operations to accomplish the purpose, goals and objectives, and the 
specific aims previously stated. Plans to recruit and retain human 
subjects, where applicable, should be described. Where human subjects 
are involved in the project, describe plans for submission to the 
Institutional Review Board (IRB).
     Project Measurements (15%): Provide evidence of the 
technical rigor and merit of the project, such as data pertaining to 
validity, reliability, and sensitivity (where established) of the 
equipment, instruments, standards, and procedures that will be used to 
carry out the specific aims previously stated. Data is collected to 
evaluate the performance of methods, technologies, and products 
proposed to enhance firefighter safety, health, and wellness. 
Measurement methods and equipment selected for use should be 
appropriate and sufficient to the project objectives.
     Project Analysis (10%): Indicate the planned approach for 
analysis of the data obtained from measurements, questionnaires, or 
computations. Specify within the plan what will be analyzed, the 
statistical methods that will be used, the sequence of steps, and 
interactions as appropriate. It should be clear that the Principal 
Investigator (PI) and research team have the expertise to perform the 
planned analysis and defend the results in a peer review process.

[[Page 22517]]

     Resources--People and Facilities (15%): Describe the 
strengths of the PI, the lead scientists, and other staff of the 
research and development team, especially with regard to similar R&D 
Activities, studies involving the fire service, and successful 
completion of prior grant-funded research and development. Also 
describe the institutional resources (e.g., labs, experimental 
facilities) to be used to support and carry out the proposed project. 
Emphasis should be given to unique people and facilities that 
contribute substantially to the project in addition to past fire 
service research.
     Dissemination and Implementation (15%): Indicate 
dissemination plans for scientific audiences (such as plans for 
submissions to specific peer review publications) and for firefighter 
audiences (such as via Web sites, magazines, and conferences). Also, 
assuming positive results and where applicable, indicate future steps 
that would support dissemination and implementation throughout the fire 
service. These are likely to be beyond the current study, so those 
features of the research activity that will facilitate future 
dissemination and implementation should be discussed. All applicants 
should specify how the results of the project, if successful, might be 
disseminated and implemented in the fire service to improve firefighter 
safety, health, and wellness, especially in the short term. It is 
expected that successful R&D Activity Projects may give rise to future 
programs including FP&S Activity Projects.
     Cost vs. Benefit (additional consideration): Cost vs. 
benefit in this evaluation element refers to the costs of the grant for 
the research and development project vs. the benefits that are 
projected for firefighters who would have improved safety, health, and 
wellness. Projects will be evaluated on the extent to which they 
demonstrate a high benefit for the cost incurred.
     Financial Need (additional consideration): In the 
Narrative Statement, applicants should provide details on the need for 
federal financial assistance to carry out the proposed project(s).

Other Selection Information

    Awards will be made using the results of peer-reviewed applications 
as the primary basis for decisions, regardless of activity. However, 
there are some exceptions to strictly using the peer review results.
    Fire departments and other eligible applicants that have received 
funding under the FP&S program in previous years are eligible to apply 
for funding in the current year. However, DHS may take into account an 
applicant's performance on prior grants when making funding decisions 
on current applications.
    Once every application in the competitive range has been through 
the technical evaluation phase, the applications will be ranked 
according to the average score awarded by the panel.
    The ranking will be summarized in a Technical Report prepared by 
the AFG Program Office. A Grants Management Specialist will contact the 
applicant to discuss and/or negotiate the content of the application 
and SAM.gov registration before making final award decisions.

    Dated: April 11, 2014.
W. Craig Fugate,
Administrator, Federal Emergency Management Agency.
[FR Doc. 2014-09179 Filed 4-21-14; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 9111-64-P