Request for Public Comment on the Proposed Adoption of Administration for Native Americans Program Policies and Procedures, 76294-76297 [2015-30868]

Download as PDF 76294 Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 235 / Tuesday, December 8, 2015 / Notices Lhorne on DSK9F6TC42PROD with NOTICES approval. To comply with this requirement, CMS is publishing this notice. Information Collection 1. Type of Information Collection Request: Extension of a currently approved collection; Title of Information Collection: Important Message from Medicare (IM); Use: Hospitals have used the IM to inform original Medicare, Medicare Advantage, and other Medicare plan beneficiaries who are hospital inpatients about their hospital rights and discharge rights. In particular, the IM provides information about when a beneficiary will and will not be liable for charges for a continued stay in a hospital and offers a detailed description of the Quality Improvement Organization review process. Please note that this iteration proposes nonsubstantive changes to the form. Form Number: CMS–R–193 (OMB Control Number: 0938–0692). Frequency: Yearly; Affected Public: Private sector (Business or other for-profit and Not-forprofit institutions); Number of Respondents: 6,164; Total Annual Responses: 24,160,000; Total Annual Hours: 3,624,000. (For policy questions regarding this collection contact Evelyn Blaemire at 410–786–1803.) 2. Type of Information Collection Request: Revision of a currently approved collection; Title of Information Collection: Programs for All-inclusive Care of the Elderly (PACE) and Supporting Regulations; Use: PACE organizations must demonstrate their ability to provide quality communitybased care for the frail elderly who meet their state’s nursing home eligibility standards using capitated payments from Medicare and the state. The model of care includes (as core services) the provision of adult day health care and multidisciplinary team case management, through which access to and allocation of all health services is controlled. Physician, therapeutic, ancillary, and social support services are provided in the participant’s residence or on-site at the adult day health center. The PACE programs must provide all Medicare and Medicaid covered services including hospital, nursing home, home health, and other specialized services. Financing of this model is accomplished through prospective capitation of both Medicare and Medicaid payments. The information collection requirements are necessary to ensure that only appropriate organizations are selected to become PACE organizations and that we have the information necessary to monitor the care provided to the frail, vulnerable population served. Form VerDate Sep<11>2014 14:17 Dec 07, 2015 Jkt 238001 Number: CMS–R–244 (OMB Control Number: 0938–0790; Frequency: Once and occasionally; Affected Public: Private sector (Not-for-profit institutions); Number of Respondents: 35; Total Annual Responses: 35; Total Annual Hours: 740. (For policy questions regarding this collection contact John Hebb at 410–786–6657.) Dated: December 3, 2015. William N. Parham, III, Director, Paperwork Reduction Staff, Office of Strategic Operations and Regulatory Affairs. [FR Doc. 2015–30891 Filed 12–7–15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4120–01–P DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Administration for Children and Families [CFDA Numbers: 93.581, 93.587, 93.612, 93.340] Request for Public Comment on the Proposed Adoption of Administration for Native Americans Program Policies and Procedures Administration for Native Americans, ACF, HHS. ACTION: Notice for public comment. AGENCY: Pursuant to Section 814 of the Native American Programs Act of 1974 (NAPA), as amended, the Administration for Native Americans (ANA) is required to provide members of the public an opportunity to comment on proposed changes in interpretive rules and general statements of policy, and to give notice of the proposed adoption of such changes at least 30 days before the changes become effective. In accordance with notice requirements of NAPA, ANA herein describes its proposed interpretive rules, general statements of policy, and rules of agency procedure or practice as they relate to the Fiscal Year (FY) 2016 Funding Opportunity Announcements (FOA) for the following programs: (1) Social and Economic Development Strategies (hereinafter referred to as SEDS) (HHS–2014–ACF– ANA–NA–0776); (2) Social and Economic Development StrategiesAlaska (hereinafter referred to as SEDS– AK) (HHS–2015–ACF–ANA–NK–0960); (3) Native Asset Building Initiative (hereinafter referred to as NABI) (HHS– 2015–ACF–ANA–NO–0954); (4) Sustainable Employment and Economic Development Strategies (hereinafter referred to as SEEDS) (HHS–2014–ACF– ANA–NE–0779); (5) Native Language Preservation and Maintenance SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00035 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 (hereinafter referred to as Language Preservation) (HHS–2014–ACF–ANA– NL–0778); (6) Native Language Preservation and Maintenance—Esther Martinez Immersion (hereinafter referred to as Language—EMI) (HHS– 2014–ACF–ANA–NB–0780); (7) Environmental Regulatory Enhancement (hereinafter referred to as ERE) (HHS– 2014–ACF–ANA–NR–0777); and new FOAs for FY2016—(8) Native Language Community Coordination Demonstration Project (hereinafter referred to as NLCC) (HHS–2016–ACF– ANA–NS–1168); and (9) Native Youth Initiative for Leadership, Empowerment, and Development (hereinafter referred to as Native Youth I–LEAD) (HHS– 2016–ACF–ANA–NC–1167) . This notice of public comment also provides additional information about ANA’s plan for administering the programs. DATES: The deadline for receipt of comments is 15 days from the date of publication in the Federal Register. ADDRESSES: Send comments in response to this notice via email to Lillian Sparks Robinson, Commissioner, Administration for Native Americans at ANACommissioner@acf.hhs.gov. Comments will be available for inspection by members of the public at the Administration for Native Americans, 330 C Street SW., Washington, DC 20201. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Carmelia Strickland, Director, Division of Program Operations, ANA (877) 922– 9262. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Section 814 of NAPA, as amended, requires ANA to provide notice of its proposed interpretive rules and general statements of policy. The proposed clarifications, modifications, and new text will appear in the eight FY 2016 FOAs: SEDS, SEDS–AK, SEEDS, Language Preservation, Language—EMI, ERE, NLCC, and Native Youth I–LEAD. This notice serves to fulfill this requirement. A. New Funding Opportunity Announcements (FOAs) ANA will offer two new FOAs in FY 2016. The proposed changes to FOA content and policies described in this Notice of Public Comment also will be applicable to the new FOAs described here: 1. Native Youth Initiative for Leadership, Empowerment, and Development (I–LEAD) FOA; 42 U.S.C. 2991b (HHS–2016–ACF–ANA–NC– 1167): ANA plans to publish a new FOA to support projects that will take a comprehensive, culturally-appropriate, approach to ensure all young Native E:\FR\FM\08DEN1.SGM 08DEN1 Lhorne on DSK9F6TC42PROD with NOTICES Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 235 / Tuesday, December 8, 2015 / Notices people can thrive and reach their full potential by fostering Native youth resilience, capacity building, and leadership. The program will be known as Native Youth Initiative for Leadership, Empowerment, and Development (I–LEAD). While youth development projects are also eligible for funding under ANA’s SEDS FOA, Native Youth I–LEAD will specifically focus on implementation of community programs that promote Native youth resiliency and foster protective factors such as connections with Native languages and Elders, positive peer groups, culturallyresponsive parenting resources, models of safe sanctuary, and reconnection with traditional healing. Projects will also promote Native youth leadership development through the establishment of local models to instill confidence in Native youth of their value and potential, preparation of older youth to be role models for younger peers, and activities that foster leadership and skills-building. In addition, it is required that Native youth will be actively involved during the planning and implementation phases of the projects to ensure that they are responsive to the needs of Native youth in the communities to be served and to ensure that youth remain engaged throughout the project period. Awards made under this FOA will be cooperative agreements since ANA anticipates substantial programmatic involvement with the recipient during performance of financially-assisted activities that will include specialized and directed technical assistance and support across the cohort of recipients. ANA’s Administrative Policies that prevent recipients from having concurrent or successive grants with the same CFDA Number, 93.612, will not apply to recipients under the Native Youth I–LEAD FOA. 2. Native Language Community Coordination Demonstration Project FOA; (HHS–2016–ACF–ANA–NS– 1168): ANA plans to publish a new FOA whose purpose is to build upon the successes of ANA’s short-term, projectbased Native Language funding. This initiative is intended as a place-based demonstration that will address gaps in community coordination across the Native language educational continuum. An essential aspect of this initiative is community capacity-building focused on the role and influence of Native language on Native students’ academic success, school attendance, and career readiness. Projects funded under this initiative will ensure high-quality Native language instruction from early childhood through college and/or VerDate Sep<11>2014 14:17 Dec 07, 2015 Jkt 238001 career. Projects also will be required to provide appropriate and culturallyresponsive curricula, Native language teacher professional development, and additional services and supports that are aligned, implemented, and evaluated to create a seamless path for Native language acquisition across generations for educational and economic success. Awards made under this FOA will be cooperative agreements since ANA anticipates substantial programmatic involvement with the recipient during performance of financially-assisted activities that will include specialized and directed technical assistance and support across the cohort of recipients. This FOA will be published under ANA’s Community Research, Demonstration and Pilot Projects CFDA Number, 93.340. Under the NAPA 42 U.S.C. 2991d, the Commissioner has authority to provide financial assistance conducted to public or private agencies for research, demonstration, or pilot projects which are designed to test or assist in the development of new approaches or methods that will aid in overcoming special problems. For some time, ANA has heard during tribal consultations and language summits that it is difficult to coordinate stand-alone language programs into the broader educational system. Also, tribal, public, charter, private schools, and colleges and universities that use primarily Native American languages to deliver education report that students from schools, which have been successful in coordinating language programs, have high school graduation rates and college attendance rates above the norm for their peers. This initiative will address gaps in community coordination; bring together key drivers of program effectiveness; test the efficacy of distinctive Native teaching materials, methods, and activities; and, contribute to the evidence base of Native language student outcomes. Since this program will use the CFDA Number 93.340, ANA’s Administrative Policy that prevents applicants from having concurrent grants under the same CFDA Number is not applicable to Native Language Community Coordination Demonstration Project FOA (HHS–2016–ACF–ANA–NS–1168). a. New Administrative Policy for Native Language Community Coordination Demonstration Project Applicants for funding under this demonstration project must be able to identify existing Native language instruction programs or partnerships that are in place and will be developed or expanded during the project’s implementation. Since one purpose of PO 00000 Frm 00036 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 76295 the demonstration project is to facilitate the coordination of Native language instruction and services among early childhood development, elementary, middle-school, high school, and higher education partners, we require thirdparty agreements from each of the identified partners describing or demonstrating their commitment to the 5-year project and to verify their role in its implementation. The third-party agreements should be included with the applicant’s submission to ANA. Without ANA’s receipt of such signed and dated letters from authorized officials of the project’s organizational participants prior to the start of the award of grant funds, the applicant’s project cannot be approved. B. Changes to Previously-Published FOAs 1. Native Language Preservation and Maintenance FOA; 42 U.S.C. 2991b– 3(a): (a) In Executive Summary and Section I. Program Description, ANA intends to: i. Modify the Description and program areas of interest for the Language Preservation FOA to promote the ability to use Language Preservation funding for a broad array of native-language related projects, including the establishment of a language program, or the improvement of an existing program. Program Areas of Interest will be modified to include the development of tools and interactive media to teach Native American language, per NAPA § 803C. (b) In Section I, Program Description, will include additional language to further distinguish Preservation and Maintenance projects from the types of projects and immersion activities that are specific to the Esther Martinez Immersion (EMI) FOA. 2. Language Preservation and Language-EMI FOAs; 42 U.S.C. 2991b– 3(a) and (b)(7): (a) In Section I. Program Description and Appendix, will remove Language Restoration Projects from the areas of interest and definitions. Current language specifies that Projects funded under the EMI FOA referenced Native American Language Nests, Native American Language Survival Schools, and Native American Language Restoration programs authorized under the Esther Martinez Native American Languages Preservation Act (Pub. L. 109–394), 42 U.S.C. 2991(b)(7). (b) This change is intended to clarify the focus of the EMI FOA on immersion as the method of instruction for preschool and school-aged children. Language Restoration programs will continue to be funded by ANA under E:\FR\FM\08DEN1.SGM 08DEN1 Lhorne on DSK9F6TC42PROD with NOTICES 76296 Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 235 / Tuesday, December 8, 2015 / Notices the Native Language Preservation and Maintenance FOA. (c) In Section IV.2. The Project Description, in accordance with requirements under the NAPA at 42 U.S.C. 2992B–3, ANA plans to add the requirement for a Program Performance Evaluation Plan to the FY 2016 Preservation and Maintenance and EMI FOAs: Applicants must describe the plan for the program performance evaluation that will contribute to continuous quality improvement. The program performance evaluation should monitor ongoing processes and the progress towards the goals and objectives of the project. Include descriptions of the inputs (e.g., organizational profile, collaborative partners, key staff, budget, and other resources), key processes, and expected outcomes of the funded activities. The plan may be supported by a logic model and must explain how the inputs, processes and outcomes will be measured, and how the resulting information will be used to inform improvement of funded activities. Applicants must describe the systems and processes that will support the organization’s performance management requirements through effective tracking of performance outcomes, including a description of how the organization will collect and manage data (e.g. assigned skilled staff, data management software) in a way that allows for accurate and timely reporting of performance outcomes. Applicants must describe any potential obstacles for implementing the program performance evaluation and how those obstacles will be addressed. (d) In Section IV.2. The Project Description, Expected Outcomes (formerly ‘‘Outcomes Expected’’), ANA intends to revise the current requirement to provide ‘‘means of measurement’’ for the impact indicator for language projects, to ‘‘means of measurement/assessment’’. Many language projects use assessment tools and ratings as a form of measurement for language proficiency. Therefore, this wording change allows for the use of an assessment tool as an impact indicator. (e) Use of Federal Application Submission Tool (FAST): ANA’s previously announced intention to pilot the Funding Application Submission Tool (F.A.S.T.) form for the Language Preservation and Maintenance FOA is on hold. This announcement was published in the Federal Register on October 16, 2015 (80 FR 62536–37). For technical reasons, ANA no longer intends to pilot the F.A.S.T. for any of the 2016 FOAs. 3. SEDS and SEEDS FOAs; 42 U.S.C. 2991b: VerDate Sep<11>2014 14:17 Dec 07, 2015 Jkt 238001 (a) In Section I. Program Description, in order to clearly differentiate between ANA’s SEDS FOA and the more targeted SEEDS FOA, ANA will clarify its description of the SEEDS initiative to reflect that SEEDS is designed for new job creation and business development in targeted industries or markets while also allowing for the development of skills, credentials, and experiences that will lead to attainment of new or existing jobs that increase the earned income for the project participants by mid-point of the project period. Training must be directed towards a specific industry. In addition, the recipient will be directly responsible for achieving both of the ANA-required outcomes expected and may not act as a pass-through. (b) In Section I. Program Description, Professional Development will be revised to Preparation for Work under the program area of interest for SEEDS to include activities that promote shortand long-term job creation by supporting targeted training of individuals to develop new technical skills, secure new credentials, and gain experience that will lead to jobs created and increased earned income. (c) In Section II. Federal Award Information, Additional Information on Awards, ANA will no longer use funding levels to distinguish award amounts in the SEEDS and SEDS FOAs. Funding Level I was set for projects with requests of $149,999 and under in SEDS and $199,999 and under in SEEDS, to allow competition among projects of similar scale. Projects with funding request of $150,000 and over in SEDS and $200,000 and over in SEEDS were designated as Funding Level II. ANA has not identified a notable difference in the average budget request within funding range as a result of the funding level designation, and therefore will discontinue the use of funding levels. Instead, ANA encourages applicants to request the level of funding that best meets the needs of the proposed project without exceeding the stated Award Ceiling amount by budget period. (d) The Award Ceiling for the SEEDS FOA will be reduced from $500,000 to $400,000; however, the project period will remain up to 60 months with five 12-month budget periods. The lower funding ceiling will allow ANA to fund additional projects under this competition. (The Award Ceiling level for awards under the SEDS FOA will remain at $400,000 as well as the same options for project periods as that offered in the FY 2015 FOA.) 4. Native Asset Building Initiative FOA; 42 U.S.C. 2991b: PO 00000 Frm 00037 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 ANA will discontinue the competition for the Native Asset Building Initiative. The two grants resulting from the partnership between the ANA and the Office of Community Services (OCS) will no longer be available as a single application submission. Asset building projects will be eligible for funding under the annual SEDS FOA. In addition, eligible applicants can participate directly in the OCS’s Assets for Independence (AFI) Program. Interested applicants may access the OCS–AFI FOA at http:// www.acf.hhs.gov/grants/open/foa/ index.cfm?switch=foa&fon=HHS-2015ACF-OCS-EI-1005. C. Changes to Administrative Policies for All FOAs (FOA Section I.) 1. The following administrative policy will be added to FY 2016 FOAs; 5 U.S.C. 301: Compliance with Background Checks and Applicable Child Safety Laws: ‘‘All recipients are expected to comply with applicable federal, tribal, or state law with respect to criminal history record checks and clearance through child abuse and neglect and sex offender registries.’’ This new administrative policy will be added to all of our FOAs to ensure that staff hired to implement ANAfunded projects which involve children are fully-vetted with background checks and other applicable laws within the local jurisdiction in which the project operates to help ensure the safety and reduce the risk to participating youth. D. Changes to Evaluation Criteria for All FOAs (FOA Section V.1. Criteria); 45 CFR 75.204 1. Changes to Evaluation Criteria Maximum Point Values: In all FY 2016 FOAs, ANA proposes to adjust the maximum point values of evaluation criteria to prioritize the elements that are important to project monitoring and project success. ANA intends to add five points to the value for the Approach Criterion for a maximum point value of 35. The point value for the Objective Work Plan (OWP) criterion will be reduced will be reduced by five points for a maximum point value of 20 points. ANA proposes to use the following maximum point values for criteria in all FY 2016 FOAs: Evaluation criteria Need for Assistance .............. Outcomes Expected .............. Project Approach ................... Objective Work Plan ............. E:\FR\FM\08DEN1.SGM 08DEN1 Maximum point values 10 25 35 20 points. points. points. points. Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 235 / Tuesday, December 8, 2015 / Notices Evaluation criteria Budget and Budget Justification. Maximum point values 10 points. 2. Changes in Sub-criteria: ANA will streamline the evaluation sub-criteria, and reorganize specific elements, to clarify instructions to panel reviewers: (a) A new sub-criterion related to the required Problem Statement will be included in the Need for Assistance criterion. (b) Reference to Specific, Measureable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-bound (S.M.A.R.T.) objectives will be included in the sub-criteria for Objectives and not overall for the Outcomes Expected sections in the Section IV.2. Project Description. Therefore, project outcomes and the impact indicator, which are also elements of the Outcomes Expected subcriteria, are not required to be S.M.A.R.T. (c) A new sub-criterion on the Current Status of Language will be added to the Approach section Language Preservation and Maintenance and the EMI FOAs. The Current Status of the Language is currently a requirement in the Approach section of the Project Description. No additional information will be required from the applicant. Lhorne on DSK9F6TC42PROD with NOTICES E. Change to Recipient Reporting Requirements for All FOAs (FOA Section VI.3.); 45 CFR 75.342 F. Relocation of ANA Offices ANA has relocated its offices to the Mary E. Switzer Memorial Building, 330 C Street SW., Washington, DC 20201. 14:17 Dec 07, 2015 Jkt 238001 Statutory Authority: Section 814 of the Native American Programs Act of 1974 (NAPA), as amended. Lillian Sparks Robinson, Commissioner, Administration for Native American. [FR Doc. 2015–30868 Filed 12–7–15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4184–34–P DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Coast Guard [Docket No. USCG–2010–1066] Recreational Boating Safety Projects, Programs, and Activities Funded Under Provisions of the Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century; Fiscal Year 2015 Coast Guard, Homeland Security. ACTION: Notice. AGENCY: In 1999, the Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century made $5 million per year available for the payment of Coast Guard expenses for personnel and activities directly related to coordinating and carrying out the national recreational boating safety program. In 2005, the law was amended, and the amount was increased to $5.5 million. The Coast Guard is publishing this notice to satisfy a requirement of the Act that a detailed accounting of the projects, programs, and activities funded under the national recreational boating safety program provision of the Act be published annually in the Federal Register. This notice specifies the funding amounts the Coast Guard has committed, obligated, or expended during fiscal year 2015, as of September 30, 2015. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For questions on this notice, call Jeff Ludwig, Regulations Development Manager, telephone 202–372–1061. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: SUMMARY: 1. Annual Data Report: ANA intends to add an Annual Data Report (ADR) to the reporting requirements for all funded projects. ANA has reduced its reporting requirements to twice—semiannually and annually. ANA recently streamlined the Objective Progress Report (OPR), and determined that some information previously collected on the OPR is not necessary for project monitoring; however is important when analyzing project data. The ADR will capture this project data throughout the life of the project, versus just asking at the end of the project. The ADR also includes additional program-specific and project assessment questions. The report will supplement the annual OPR and will not deviate from the annual reporting cycle of the OPR, therefore still requiring grantees only report twice annually as stated previously. The report will be due 30 days after the end of each budget period and 90 days after the end of the project period. VerDate Sep<11>2014 Our phone numbers and email addresses will remain the same. Phone: (877) 922–9262 Fax: (202) 690–7441 Email: anacomments@acf.hhs.gov URL: www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/ana. Contact information in all FY 2016 FOAs will be updated to provide mailing and physical location addresses for the new building. Background and Purpose The Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century became law on June 9, 1998 (Pub. L. 105–178; 112 Stat. 107). The Act required that of the $5 million made available to carry out the national PO 00000 Frm 00038 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 76297 recreational boating safety program each year, $2 million shall be available only to ensure compliance with Chapter 43 of Title 46, U.S. Code. On September 29, 2005, the Sportfishing and Recreational Boating Safety Amendments Act of 2005 was enacted (Public Law 109–74; 119 Stat. 2031). This Act increased the funds available to the national recreational boating safety program from $5 million to $5.5 million annually, and stated that ‘‘not less than’’ $2 million shall be available only to ensure compliance with Chapter 43 of Title 46, U.S. Code. These funds are available to the Secretary from the Sport Fish Restoration and Boating Trust Fund established under 26 U.S.C. 9504(a) for payment of Coast Guard expenses for personnel and activities directly related to coordinating and carrying out the national recreational boating safety program. Under 46 U.S.C. 13107(c), no funds available to the Secretary under this subsection may be used to replace funding traditionally provided through general appropriations, nor for any purposes except those purposes authorized; namely, for personnel and activities directly related to coordinating and carrying out the national recreational boating safety program. Amounts made available under 46 U.S.C. 13107(c) remain available during the two succeeding fiscal years. Any amount that is unexpended or unobligated at the end of the 3-year period during which it is available, shall be withdrawn by the Secretary and allocated to the States in addition to any other amounts available for allocation in the fiscal year in which they are withdrawn or the following fiscal year. Use of these funds requires compliance with standard Federal contracting rules with associated lead and processing times resulting in a lag time between available funds and spending. The total amount of funding transferred to the Coast Guard from the Sport Fish Restoration and Boating Trust Fund and committed, obligated, and/or expended during fiscal year 2015 for each activity is shown below. Specific Accounting of Funds Manufacturer Compliance Inspection Program/Boat Testing Program: Funding was provided to continue the national recreational boat compliance inspection program, initiated in January 2001. During the Fiscal Year contracted personnel, acting on behalf of the Coast Guard, visit recreational boat manufacturers, recreational boat dealers, and recreational boat shows to inspect for compliance with the Federal regulations. During the 2015 reporting E:\FR\FM\08DEN1.SGM 08DEN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 80, Number 235 (Tuesday, December 8, 2015)]
[Notices]
[Pages 76294-76297]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2015-30868]


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DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES

Administration for Children and Families

[CFDA Numbers: 93.581, 93.587, 93.612, 93.340]


Request for Public Comment on the Proposed Adoption of 
Administration for Native Americans Program Policies and Procedures

AGENCY: Administration for Native Americans, ACF, HHS.

ACTION: Notice for public comment.

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

SUMMARY: Pursuant to Section 814 of the Native American Programs Act of 
1974 (NAPA), as amended, the Administration for Native Americans (ANA) 
is required to provide members of the public an opportunity to comment 
on proposed changes in interpretive rules and general statements of 
policy, and to give notice of the proposed adoption of such changes at 
least 30 days before the changes become effective. In accordance with 
notice requirements of NAPA, ANA herein describes its proposed 
interpretive rules, general statements of policy, and rules of agency 
procedure or practice as they relate to the Fiscal Year (FY) 2016 
Funding Opportunity Announcements (FOA) for the following programs: (1) 
Social and Economic Development Strategies (hereinafter referred to as 
SEDS) (HHS-2014-ACF-ANA-NA-0776); (2) Social and Economic Development 
Strategies- Alaska (hereinafter referred to as SEDS-AK) (HHS-2015-ACF-
ANA-NK-0960); (3) Native Asset Building Initiative (hereinafter 
referred to as NABI) (HHS-2015-ACF-ANA-NO-0954); (4) Sustainable 
Employment and Economic Development Strategies (hereinafter referred to 
as SEEDS) (HHS-2014-ACF-ANA-NE-0779); (5) Native Language Preservation 
and Maintenance (hereinafter referred to as Language Preservation) 
(HHS-2014-ACF-ANA-NL-0778); (6) Native Language Preservation and 
Maintenance--Esther Martinez Immersion (hereinafter referred to as 
Language--EMI) (HHS-2014-ACF-ANA-NB-0780); (7) Environmental Regulatory 
Enhancement (hereinafter referred to as ERE) (HHS-2014-ACF-ANA-NR-
0777); and new FOAs for FY2016--(8) Native Language Community 
Coordination Demonstration Project (hereinafter referred to as NLCC) 
(HHS-2016-ACF-ANA-NS-1168); and (9) Native Youth Initiative for 
Leadership, Empowerment, and Development (hereinafter referred to as 
Native Youth I-LEAD) (HHS-2016-ACF-ANA-NC-1167) . This notice of public 
comment also provides additional information about ANA's plan for 
administering the programs.

DATES: The deadline for receipt of comments is 15 days from the date of 
publication in the Federal Register.

ADDRESSES: Send comments in response to this notice via email to 
Lillian Sparks Robinson, Commissioner, Administration for Native 
Americans at ANACommissioner@acf.hhs.gov. Comments will be available 
for inspection by members of the public at the Administration for 
Native Americans, 330 C Street SW., Washington, DC 20201.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Carmelia Strickland, Director, 
Division of Program Operations, ANA (877) 922-9262.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Section 814 of NAPA, as amended, requires 
ANA to provide notice of its proposed interpretive rules and general 
statements of policy. The proposed clarifications, modifications, and 
new text will appear in the eight FY 2016 FOAs: SEDS, SEDS-AK, SEEDS, 
Language Preservation, Language--EMI, ERE, NLCC, and Native Youth I-
LEAD. This notice serves to fulfill this requirement.

A. New Funding Opportunity Announcements (FOAs)

    ANA will offer two new FOAs in FY 2016. The proposed changes to FOA 
content and policies described in this Notice of Public Comment also 
will be applicable to the new FOAs described here:
    1. Native Youth Initiative for Leadership, Empowerment, and 
Development (I-LEAD) FOA; 42 U.S.C. 2991b (HHS-2016-ACF-ANA-NC-1167): 
ANA plans to publish a new FOA to support projects that will take a 
comprehensive, culturally-appropriate, approach to ensure all young 
Native

[[Page 76295]]

people can thrive and reach their full potential by fostering Native 
youth resilience, capacity building, and leadership. The program will 
be known as Native Youth Initiative for Leadership, Empowerment, and 
Development (I-LEAD).
    While youth development projects are also eligible for funding 
under ANA's SEDS FOA, Native Youth I-LEAD will specifically focus on 
implementation of community programs that promote Native youth 
resiliency and foster protective factors such as connections with 
Native languages and Elders, positive peer groups, culturally-
responsive parenting resources, models of safe sanctuary, and 
reconnection with traditional healing. Projects will also promote 
Native youth leadership development through the establishment of local 
models to instill confidence in Native youth of their value and 
potential, preparation of older youth to be role models for younger 
peers, and activities that foster leadership and skills-building. In 
addition, it is required that Native youth will be actively involved 
during the planning and implementation phases of the projects to ensure 
that they are responsive to the needs of Native youth in the 
communities to be served and to ensure that youth remain engaged 
throughout the project period. Awards made under this FOA will be 
cooperative agreements since ANA anticipates substantial programmatic 
involvement with the recipient during performance of financially-
assisted activities that will include specialized and directed 
technical assistance and support across the cohort of recipients.
    ANA's Administrative Policies that prevent recipients from having 
concurrent or successive grants with the same CFDA Number, 93.612, will 
not apply to recipients under the Native Youth I-LEAD FOA.
    2. Native Language Community Coordination Demonstration Project 
FOA; (HHS-2016-ACF-ANA-NS-1168): ANA plans to publish a new FOA whose 
purpose is to build upon the successes of ANA's short-term, project-
based Native Language funding. This initiative is intended as a place-
based demonstration that will address gaps in community coordination 
across the Native language educational continuum. An essential aspect 
of this initiative is community capacity-building focused on the role 
and influence of Native language on Native students' academic success, 
school attendance, and career readiness. Projects funded under this 
initiative will ensure high-quality Native language instruction from 
early childhood through college and/or career. Projects also will be 
required to provide appropriate and culturally-responsive curricula, 
Native language teacher professional development, and additional 
services and supports that are aligned, implemented, and evaluated to 
create a seamless path for Native language acquisition across 
generations for educational and economic success. Awards made under 
this FOA will be cooperative agreements since ANA anticipates 
substantial programmatic involvement with the recipient during 
performance of financially-assisted activities that will include 
specialized and directed technical assistance and support across the 
cohort of recipients.
    This FOA will be published under ANA's Community Research, 
Demonstration and Pilot Projects CFDA Number, 93.340. Under the NAPA 42 
U.S.C. 2991d, the Commissioner has authority to provide financial 
assistance conducted to public or private agencies for research, 
demonstration, or pilot projects which are designed to test or assist 
in the development of new approaches or methods that will aid in 
overcoming special problems.
    For some time, ANA has heard during tribal consultations and 
language summits that it is difficult to coordinate stand-alone 
language programs into the broader educational system. Also, tribal, 
public, charter, private schools, and colleges and universities that 
use primarily Native American languages to deliver education report 
that students from schools, which have been successful in coordinating 
language programs, have high school graduation rates and college 
attendance rates above the norm for their peers. This initiative will 
address gaps in community coordination; bring together key drivers of 
program effectiveness; test the efficacy of distinctive Native teaching 
materials, methods, and activities; and, contribute to the evidence 
base of Native language student outcomes.
    Since this program will use the CFDA Number 93.340, ANA's 
Administrative Policy that prevents applicants from having concurrent 
grants under the same CFDA Number is not applicable to Native Language 
Community Coordination Demonstration Project FOA (HHS-2016-ACF-ANA-NS-
1168).

a. New Administrative Policy for Native Language Community Coordination 
Demonstration Project

    Applicants for funding under this demonstration project must be 
able to identify existing Native language instruction programs or 
partnerships that are in place and will be developed or expanded during 
the project's implementation. Since one purpose of the demonstration 
project is to facilitate the coordination of Native language 
instruction and services among early childhood development, elementary, 
middle-school, high school, and higher education partners, we require 
third-party agreements from each of the identified partners describing 
or demonstrating their commitment to the 5-year project and to verify 
their role in its implementation. The third-party agreements should be 
included with the applicant's submission to ANA. Without ANA's receipt 
of such signed and dated letters from authorized officials of the 
project's organizational participants prior to the start of the award 
of grant funds, the applicant's project cannot be approved.

B. Changes to Previously-Published FOAs

    1. Native Language Preservation and Maintenance FOA; 42 U.S.C. 
2991b-3(a):
    (a) In Executive Summary and Section I. Program Description, ANA 
intends to:
    i. Modify the Description and program areas of interest for the 
Language Preservation FOA to promote the ability to use Language 
Preservation funding for a broad array of native-language related 
projects, including the establishment of a language program, or the 
improvement of an existing program. Program Areas of Interest will be 
modified to include the development of tools and interactive media to 
teach Native American language, per NAPA Sec.  803C.
    (b) In Section I, Program Description, will include additional 
language to further distinguish Preservation and Maintenance projects 
from the types of projects and immersion activities that are specific 
to the Esther Martinez Immersion (EMI) FOA.
    2. Language Preservation and Language-EMI FOAs; 42 U.S.C. 2991b-
3(a) and (b)(7):
    (a) In Section I. Program Description and Appendix, will remove 
Language Restoration Projects from the areas of interest and 
definitions. Current language specifies that Projects funded under the 
EMI FOA referenced Native American Language Nests, Native American 
Language Survival Schools, and Native American Language Restoration 
programs authorized under the Esther Martinez Native American Languages 
Preservation Act (Pub. L. 109-394), 42 U.S.C. 2991(b)(7).
    (b) This change is intended to clarify the focus of the EMI FOA on 
immersion as the method of instruction for pre-school and school-aged 
children. Language Restoration programs will continue to be funded by 
ANA under

[[Page 76296]]

the Native Language Preservation and Maintenance FOA.
    (c) In Section IV.2. The Project Description, in accordance with 
requirements under the NAPA at 42 U.S.C. 2992B-3, ANA plans to add the 
requirement for a Program Performance Evaluation Plan to the FY 2016 
Preservation and Maintenance and EMI FOAs:
    Applicants must describe the plan for the program performance 
evaluation that will contribute to continuous quality improvement. The 
program performance evaluation should monitor ongoing processes and the 
progress towards the goals and objectives of the project. Include 
descriptions of the inputs (e.g., organizational profile, collaborative 
partners, key staff, budget, and other resources), key processes, and 
expected outcomes of the funded activities. The plan may be supported 
by a logic model and must explain how the inputs, processes and 
outcomes will be measured, and how the resulting information will be 
used to inform improvement of funded activities.
    Applicants must describe the systems and processes that will 
support the organization's performance management requirements through 
effective tracking of performance outcomes, including a description of 
how the organization will collect and manage data (e.g. assigned 
skilled staff, data management software) in a way that allows for 
accurate and timely reporting of performance outcomes. Applicants must 
describe any potential obstacles for implementing the program 
performance evaluation and how those obstacles will be addressed.
    (d) In Section IV.2. The Project Description, Expected Outcomes 
(formerly ``Outcomes Expected''), ANA intends to revise the current 
requirement to provide ``means of measurement'' for the impact 
indicator for language projects, to ``means of measurement/
assessment''. Many language projects use assessment tools and ratings 
as a form of measurement for language proficiency. Therefore, this 
wording change allows for the use of an assessment tool as an impact 
indicator.
    (e) Use of Federal Application Submission Tool (FAST): ANA's 
previously announced intention to pilot the Funding Application 
Submission Tool (F.A.S.T.) form for the Language Preservation and 
Maintenance FOA is on hold. This announcement was published in the 
Federal Register on October 16, 2015 (80 FR 62536-37). For technical 
reasons, ANA no longer intends to pilot the F.A.S.T. for any of the 
2016 FOAs.
    3. SEDS and SEEDS FOAs; 42 U.S.C. 2991b:
    (a) In Section I. Program Description, in order to clearly 
differentiate between ANA's SEDS FOA and the more targeted SEEDS FOA, 
ANA will clarify its description of the SEEDS initiative to reflect 
that SEEDS is designed for new job creation and business development in 
targeted industries or markets while also allowing for the development 
of skills, credentials, and experiences that will lead to attainment of 
new or existing jobs that increase the earned income for the project 
participants by mid-point of the project period. Training must be 
directed towards a specific industry. In addition, the recipient will 
be directly responsible for achieving both of the ANA-required outcomes 
expected and may not act as a pass-through.
    (b) In Section I. Program Description, Professional Development 
will be revised to Preparation for Work under the program area of 
interest for SEEDS to include activities that promote short- and long-
term job creation by supporting targeted training of individuals to 
develop new technical skills, secure new credentials, and gain 
experience that will lead to jobs created and increased earned income.
    (c) In Section II. Federal Award Information, Additional 
Information on Awards, ANA will no longer use funding levels to 
distinguish award amounts in the SEEDS and SEDS FOAs. Funding Level I 
was set for projects with requests of $149,999 and under in SEDS and 
$199,999 and under in SEEDS, to allow competition among projects of 
similar scale. Projects with funding request of $150,000 and over in 
SEDS and $200,000 and over in SEEDS were designated as Funding Level 
II. ANA has not identified a notable difference in the average budget 
request within funding range as a result of the funding level 
designation, and therefore will discontinue the use of funding levels.
    Instead, ANA encourages applicants to request the level of funding 
that best meets the needs of the proposed project without exceeding the 
stated Award Ceiling amount by budget period.
    (d) The Award Ceiling for the SEEDS FOA will be reduced from 
$500,000 to $400,000; however, the project period will remain up to 60 
months with five 12-month budget periods. The lower funding ceiling 
will allow ANA to fund additional projects under this competition. (The 
Award Ceiling level for awards under the SEDS FOA will remain at 
$400,000 as well as the same options for project periods as that 
offered in the FY 2015 FOA.)
    4. Native Asset Building Initiative FOA; 42 U.S.C. 2991b:
    ANA will discontinue the competition for the Native Asset Building 
Initiative. The two grants resulting from the partnership between the 
ANA and the Office of Community Services (OCS) will no longer be 
available as a single application submission. Asset building projects 
will be eligible for funding under the annual SEDS FOA. In addition, 
eligible applicants can participate directly in the OCS's Assets for 
Independence (AFI) Program. Interested applicants may access the OCS-
AFI FOA at http://www.acf.hhs.gov/grants/open/foa/index.cfm?switch=foa&fon=HHS-2015-ACF-OCS-EI-1005.

C. Changes to Administrative Policies for All FOAs (FOA Section I.)

    1. The following administrative policy will be added to FY 2016 
FOAs; 5 U.S.C. 301:
    Compliance with Background Checks and Applicable Child Safety Laws:
    ``All recipients are expected to comply with applicable federal, 
tribal, or state law with respect to criminal history record checks and 
clearance through child abuse and neglect and sex offender 
registries.''
    This new administrative policy will be added to all of our FOAs to 
ensure that staff hired to implement ANA-funded projects which involve 
children are fully-vetted with background checks and other applicable 
laws within the local jurisdiction in which the project operates to 
help ensure the safety and reduce the risk to participating youth.

D. Changes to Evaluation Criteria for All FOAs (FOA Section V.1. 
Criteria); 45 CFR 75.204

    1. Changes to Evaluation Criteria Maximum Point Values: In all FY 
2016 FOAs, ANA proposes to adjust the maximum point values of 
evaluation criteria to prioritize the elements that are important to 
project monitoring and project success. ANA intends to add five points 
to the value for the Approach Criterion for a maximum point value of 
35. The point value for the Objective Work Plan (OWP) criterion will be 
reduced will be reduced by five points for a maximum point value of 20 
points. ANA proposes to use the following maximum point values for 
criteria in all FY 2016 FOAs:

------------------------------------------------------------------------
            Evaluation criteria                 Maximum point values
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Need for Assistance.......................  10 points.
Outcomes Expected.........................  25 points.
Project Approach..........................  35 points.
Objective Work Plan.......................  20 points.

[[Page 76297]]

 
Budget and Budget Justification...........  10 points.
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    2. Changes in Sub-criteria: ANA will streamline the evaluation sub-
criteria, and reorganize specific elements, to clarify instructions to 
panel reviewers:
    (a) A new sub-criterion related to the required Problem Statement 
will be included in the Need for Assistance criterion.
    (b) Reference to Specific, Measureable, Achievable, Relevant and 
Time-bound (S.M.A.R.T.) objectives will be included in the sub-criteria 
for Objectives and not overall for the Outcomes Expected sections in 
the Section IV.2. Project Description. Therefore, project outcomes and 
the impact indicator, which are also elements of the Outcomes Expected 
sub-criteria, are not required to be S.M.A.R.T.
    (c) A new sub-criterion on the Current Status of Language will be 
added to the Approach section Language Preservation and Maintenance and 
the EMI FOAs. The Current Status of the Language is currently a 
requirement in the Approach section of the Project Description. No 
additional information will be required from the applicant.

E. Change to Recipient Reporting Requirements for All FOAs (FOA Section 
VI.3.); 45 CFR 75.342

    1. Annual Data Report: ANA intends to add an Annual Data Report 
(ADR) to the reporting requirements for all funded projects. ANA has 
reduced its reporting requirements to twice--semi-annually and 
annually. ANA recently streamlined the Objective Progress Report (OPR), 
and determined that some information previously collected on the OPR is 
not necessary for project monitoring; however is important when 
analyzing project data. The ADR will capture this project data 
throughout the life of the project, versus just asking at the end of 
the project. The ADR also includes additional program-specific and 
project assessment questions. The report will supplement the annual OPR 
and will not deviate from the annual reporting cycle of the OPR, 
therefore still requiring grantees only report twice annually as stated 
previously. The report will be due 30 days after the end of each budget 
period and 90 days after the end of the project period.

F. Relocation of ANA Offices

    ANA has relocated its offices to the Mary E. Switzer Memorial 
Building, 330 C Street SW., Washington, DC 20201. Our phone numbers and 
email addresses will remain the same. Phone: (877) 922-9262 Fax: (202) 
690-7441 Email: anacomments@acf.hhs.gov URL: www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/ana.
    Contact information in all FY 2016 FOAs will be updated to provide 
mailing and physical location addresses for the new building.

    Statutory Authority:  Section 814 of the Native American 
Programs Act of 1974 (NAPA), as amended.

Lillian Sparks Robinson,
Commissioner, Administration for Native American.
[FR Doc. 2015-30868 Filed 12-7-15; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 4184-34-P