Notice of Funds Availability: Inviting Applications for the Technical Assistance for Specialty Crops Program, 19120-19122 [2016-07633]

Download as PDF 19120 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 64 / Monday, April 4, 2016 / Notices 2. Review and Selection Process: All applications undergo a multi-phase review within FAS, by appropriate FAS field offices, and, as needed, by the private sector Advisory Committee on Emerging Markets to determine the qualifications, quality, and appropriateness of projects and the reasonableness of project budgets. F. Federal Award Administration Information 1. Award Notices: FAS will notify each applicant in writing of the final disposition of the submitted application. FAS will send an approval letter and project agreement to each approved applicant. The approval letter and agreement will specify the terms and conditions applicable to the project, including the levels of EMP funding and cost-share contribution requirements. 2. Administrative and National Policy Requirements: Interested parties should review the EMP regulations, which are available at the following URL address: http://www.fas.usda.gov/programs/ emerging-markets-program-emp. 3. Reporting. Quarterly progress reports for all programs one year or longer in duration are required. Projects of less than one year generally require a mid-term progress report. Final performance reports are due 90 days after completion of each project. Content requirements for both types of reports are contained in the Project Agreement. Final financial reports are also due 90 days after completion of each project as attachments to the final reports. Please see 7 CFR part 1486 for additional reporting requirements. G. Federal Awarding Agency Contact(s) mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with NOTICES For additional information and assistance, contact the Program Operations Division, Office of Trade Programs, Foreign Agricultural Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture by courier: Room 6512, 1400 Independence Ave. SW., Washington, DC 20250, or by phone: (202) 720–4327, or by fax: (202) 720–9361, or by email: podadmin@ fas.usda.gov. Signed at Washington, DC, on 25th day of March, 2016. Bryce Quick, Acting Administrator, Foreign Agricultural Service and Vice President, Commodity Credit Corporation. [FR Doc. 2016–07638 Filed 4–1–16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410–10–P VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:03 Apr 01, 2016 Jkt 238001 DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Commodity Credit Corporation Notice of Funds Availability: Inviting Applications for the Technical Assistance for Specialty Crops Program Announcement Type: New. Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number: 10.604. SUMMARY: The Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) announces that it is inviting proposals for the 2017 Technical Assistance for Specialty Crops (TASC) program. The intended effect of this notice is to solicit applications from the private sector and from government agencies for fiscal year 2017 and to set out criteria for the award of funds in October 2016. The TASC program is administered by personnel of the Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS). DATES: To be considered for funding, applications must be received by 5 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, June 3, 2016. Any applications received after this time will be considered only if funds are still available. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Entities wishing to apply for funding assistance should contact the Program Operations Division, Office of Trade Programs, Foreign Agricultural Service by courier: Room 6512, 1400 Independence Ave. SW., Washington, DC 20250, or by phone: (202) 720–4327, or by fax: (202) 720–9361, or by email: podadmin@fas.usda.gov. Information is also available on the FAS Web site at http://www.fas.usda.gov/programs/ technical-assistance-specialty-cropstasc. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: A. Funding Opportunity Description Authority: The TASC program is authorized by section 3205 of Pub. L. 107–171. TASC regulations appear at 7 CFR part 1487. Purpose: The TASC program is designed to assist U.S. organizations by providing funding for projects that address sanitary, phytosanitary, or technical barriers that prohibit or threaten the export of U.S. specialty crops. U.S. specialty crops, for the purpose of the TASC program, are defined to include all cultivated plants, or the products thereof, produced in the United States except wheat, feed grains, oilseeds, cotton, rice, peanuts, sugar, and tobacco. Prior to the enactment of the Agricultural Act of 2014 (Act) on February 7, 2014, the TASC program was not available to address technical barriers to trade except for those that PO 00000 Frm 00009 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 were related to sanitary or phytosanitary issues. The Act amended the statute authorizing the TASC program to allow the program to be used to address technical barriers to trade regardless of whether the barriers are related to a sanitary or phytosanitary barrier. The TASC regulations have been amended to reflect the recent statutory change. As a general matter, TASC program projects should be designed to address the following criteria: • Projects should identify and address a sanitary, phytosanitary, or technical barrier that prohibits or threatens the export of U.S. specialty crops; • Projects should demonstrably benefit the represented industry rather than a specific company or brand; • Projects must address barriers to exports of commercially-available U.S. specialty crops for which barrier removal would predominantly benefit U.S. exports; and • Projects should include an explanation as to what specifically could not be accomplished without Federal funding assistance and why the participating organization(s) would be unlikely to carry out the project without such assistance. Examples of expenses that CCC may agree to reimburse under the TASC program include, but are not limited to: Initial pre-clearance programs, export protocol and work plan support, seminars and workshops, study tours, field surveys, development of pest lists, pest and disease research, reasonable logistical and administrative support, and travel and per diem expenses. B. Award Information In general, all qualified proposals received before the specified application deadline will compete for funding. The limited funds and the range of barriers affecting the exports of U.S. specialty crops worldwide preclude CCC from approving large budgets for individual projects. Proposals requesting more than $500,000 in any given year will not be considered. Additionally, private entities may submit multi-year proposals that may be considered in the context of a detailed strategic implementation plan. The maximum duration of an activity is five years. Funding in such cases may, at FAS’ discretion, be provided one year at a time with commitments beyond the first year subject to interim evaluations and funding availability. In order to validate funding eligibility, proposals must specify previous years of TASC funding for each proposed activity/title/market/ constraint combination. Government E:\FR\FM\04APN1.SGM 04APN1 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 64 / Monday, April 4, 2016 / Notices mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with NOTICES entities are not eligible for multi-year funding. Applicants may submit multiple proposals, and applicants with previously approved TASC proposals may apply for additional funding. The number of approved projects that a TASC participant can have underway at any given time is five. Please see 7 CFR part 1487 for additional restrictions. FAS will consider providing either grant funds as direct assistance to U.S. organizations or technical assistance on behalf of U.S. organizations, provided that the organization submits timely and qualified proposals. FAS will review all proposals against the evaluation criteria contained in the program regulations. Funding for successful proposals will be provided through specific agreements. These agreements will incorporate the proposal as approved by FAS. FAS must approve in advance any subsequent changes to the project. FAS or another Federal agency may be involved in the implementation of approved projects. C. Eligibility Information 1. Eligible Applicants: Any U.S. organization, private or government, with a demonstrated role or interest in exporting U.S. agricultural commodities may apply to the program. Government organizations consist of Federal, State, and local agencies. Private organizations include non-profit trade associations, universities, agricultural cooperatives, state regional trade groups, and private companies. Foreign organizations, whether government or private, may participate as third parties in activities carried out by U.S. organizations, but are not eligible for direct funding assistance from the program. 2. Cost Sharing or Matching: FAS considers the applicant’s willingness to contribute resources, including cash, goods, and services of the U.S. industry and foreign third parties, when determining which proposals are approved for funding. 3. Funding Justification: Proposals should include a justification for funding assistance from the program— an explanation as to what specifically could not be accomplished without Federal funding assistance and why the participating organization(s) would be unlikely to carry out the project without such assistance. D. Application and Submission Information 1. Application through the Unified Export Strategy (UES): Organizations are strongly encouraged to submit their applications to FAS through the web- VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:03 Apr 01, 2016 Jkt 238001 based UES application. Using the UES application process reduces paperwork and expedites FAS’s processing and review cycle. Applicants planning to use the UES system must contact FAS’ Program Operations Division to obtain site access information, including a user ID and password. The UES Internetbased application may be found at the following URL address: https:// www.fas.usda.gov/ues/webapp/. Although FAS highly recommends applying via the web-based UES application, applicants have the option of submitting an electronic version to FAS at podadmin@fas.usda.gov. 2. Content and Form of Application Submission: All TASC proposals must contain complete information about the proposed projects as described in § 1487.5(b) of the TASC program regulations. In addition, in accordance with the Office of Management and Budget’s policy directive (68 FR 38402 (June 27, 2003)) regarding the need to identify entities that are receiving government awards, all applicants must submit a Dun and Bradstreet Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number. An applicant may request a DUNS number at no cost by calling the dedicated toll-free DUNS number request line at (866) 705–5711. In addition, in accordance with 2 CFR part 25, each entity that applies to the TASC and does not qualify for an exemption under 2 CFR 25.110 must: (i) Provide a valid DUNS number in each application or plan it submits to CCC; (ii) Be registered in the System for Award Management (SAM) prior to submitting an application or plan; and (iii) Continue to maintain an active SAM registration with current information at all times during which it has an active Federal award or an application or plan under consideration by CCC. Similarly, in accordance with 2 CFR part 170, each entity that applies to the TASC program and does not qualify for an exception under 2 CFR 170.110(b) must ensure it has the necessary processes and systems in place to comply with the applicable reporting requirements of 2 CFR part 170 should it receive TASC funding. Incomplete applications and applications that do not otherwise conform to this announcement will not be accepted for review. 3. Submission Dates and Times: TASC proposals are reviewed on a rolling basis during the fiscal year as long as TASC funding is available as set forth below: • Proposals received by 5 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, June 3, 2016, PO 00000 Frm 00010 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 19121 will be considered for funding with other proposals received by that date; • Proposals not approved for funding during the review period will be reconsidered for funding after the review period only if the applicant specifically requests such reconsideration in writing, and only if funding remains available; • Proposals received after 5 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, June 3, 2016, will be considered in the order received for funding only if funding remains available. Notwithstanding the foregoing, a proposal may be submitted for expedited consideration under the TASC Quick Response process if, in addition to meeting all requirements of the TASC program, a proposal clearly identifies a time–sensitive activity. In these cases, a proposal may be submitted at any time for an expedited evaluation. Such a proposal must include a specific request for expedited evaluation. FAS will track the time and date of receipt of all proposals. 4. Funding Restrictions: Although funded projects may take place in the United States or abroad, all eligible projects must specifically address sanitary, phytosanitary, or technical barriers to the export of U.S. specialty crops. Certain types of expenses are not eligible for reimbursement by the program, such as the costs of market research, advertising, or other promotional expenses, and will be set forth in the written program agreement between CCC and the participant. CCC will also not reimburse unreasonable expenditures or any expenditure made prior to approval of a proposal. 5. Other Submission Requirements: All applications must be properly submitted through the UES by 5 p.m., Eastern Daylight Time, June 3, 2016, in order to be considered for funding; late submissions received after the deadline will be considered only if funding remains available. All applications submitted by email must be received by 5 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, June 3, 2016, at podadmin@fas.usda.gov in order to receive the same consideration. E. Application Review Information 1. Criteria: FAS follows the evaluation criteria set forth in § 1487.6 of the TASC regulations. Reviewers will evaluate according to the following criteria: (1) The nature of the specific export barrier and the extent to which the proposal is likely to successfully remove, resolve, or mitigate that barrier (12.5%); E:\FR\FM\04APN1.SGM 04APN1 19122 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 64 / Monday, April 4, 2016 / Notices mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with NOTICES (2) The potential trade impact of the proposed project on market retention, market access, and market expansion, including the potential for expanding commercial sales in the targeted market (12.5%); (3) The completeness and viability of the proposal. Among other things, this can include the cost of the project and the amount of other resources dedicated to the project, including cash, goods, and services of the U.S. industry and foreign third parties (15%); (4) The ability of the organization to provide an experienced staff with the requisite technical and trade experience to execute the proposal (15%); (5) The extent to which the proposal is targeted to a market in which the United States is generally competitive (17.5%); (6) The degree to which time is essential to addressing specific export barriers (5%); (7) The ability of the applicant to provide a broad base of producer representation (12.5%); (8) The effectiveness and potential of the performance measures (10%); 2. Review and Selection Process: FAS will review proposals for eligibility and will evaluate each proposal against the criteria referred to above. The purpose of this review is to identify meritorious proposals, recommend an appropriate funding level for each proposal based upon these factors, and submit the proposals and funding recommendations to the Deputy Administrator, Office of Trade Programs. FAS may, when appropriate, request the assistance of other U.S. government subject area experts in evaluating the merits of a proposal. F. Award Administration Information 1. Federal Award Notices: FAS will notify each applicant in writing of the final disposition of the submitted application. FAS will send an approval letter and agreement to each approved applicant. The approval letter and agreement will specify the terms and conditions applicable to the project, including levels of funding, timelines for implementation, and written evaluation requirements. 2. Administrative and National Policy Requirements: The agreements will incorporate the details of each project as approved by FAS. Each agreement will identify terms and conditions pursuant to which CCC will reimburse certain costs of each project. Agreements will also outline the responsibilities of the participant. Interested parties should review the TASC program regulations found at 7 CFR part 1487 in addition to this announcement. TASC program VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:03 Apr 01, 2016 Jkt 238001 regulations are available at the following URL address: http://www.fas.usda.gov/ programs/technical-assistancespecialty-crops-tasc. Hard copies may be obtained by contacting the Program Operations Division at (202) 720–4327. 3. Reporting: TASC participants will be required to submit regular interim reports and a final performance report, each of which evaluate the TASC project using the performance measures presented in the approved proposal, as set forth in the written program agreement. G. Federal Awarding Agency Contact For additional information and assistance, contact the Program Operations Division, Office of Trade Programs, Foreign Agricultural Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture by courier: Room 6512, 1400 Independence Ave. SW., Washington, DC 20250, or by phone: (202) 720–4327, or by fax: (202) 720–9361, or by e–mail: podadmin@ fas.usda.gov. Signed at Washington, DC on the 25th of March, 2016. Bryce Quick, Acting Administrator, Foreign Agricultural Service, and Vice President, Commodity Credit Corporation. [FR Doc. 2016–07633 Filed 4–1–16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410–10–P DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Commodity Credit Corporation Notice of Funds Availability: Inviting Applications for the Quality Samples Program Announcement Type: New. Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number: 10.605. SUMMARY: The Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) announces it is inviting proposals for the 2017 Quality Samples Program (QSP). The intended effect of this notice is to solicit applications from eligible applicants for fiscal year 2017 and to set out the criteria for the award of funds under the program in October 2016. QSP is administered by personnel of the Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS). DATES: To be considered for funding, applications must be received by 5 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, June 3, 2016. Any applications received after this time will be considered only if funds are still available. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Entities wishing to apply for funding assistance should contact the Program Operations Division, Office of Trade Programs, Foreign Agricultural Service PO 00000 Frm 00011 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 by courier: Room 6512, 1400 Independence Ave. SW., Washington, DC 20250, or by phone: (202) 720–4327, or by fax: (202) 720–9361, or by email: podadmin@fas.usda.gov. Information is also available on the FAS Web site at http://www.fas.usda.gov/programs/ quality-samples-program-qsp. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: A. Funding Opportunity Description Authority: QSP is authorized under Section 5(f) of the CCC Charter Act, 15 U.S.C. 714c(f). Purpose: QSP is designed to encourage the development and expansion of export markets for U.S. agricultural commodities by assisting U.S. entities in providing commodity samples to potential foreign importers to promote a better understanding and appreciation for the high quality of U.S. agricultural commodities. QSP participants will be responsible for procuring (or arranging for the procurement of) commodity samples, exporting the samples, and providing the on-site technical assistance necessary to facilitate successful use of the samples by importers. Participants that are funded under this announcement may seek reimbursement from QSP for the sample purchase price and for the cost of transporting the samples domestically to the port of export and then to the foreign port or point of entry. Transportation costs from the foreign port or point of entry to the final destination are not eligible for reimbursement. CCC will not reimburse the costs incidental to purchasing and transporting samples, such as: Inspection or documentation fees, certificates of any kind, tariffs, etc. Although providing technical assistance is required for all projects, QSP will not reimburse the costs of providing technical assistance. A QSP participant will be reimbursed after CCC reviews its reimbursement claim and determines that the claim is complete. General Scope of QSP Projects: QSP projects are the activities undertaken by a QSP participant to provide an appropriate sample of a U.S. agricultural commodity to a foreign importer, or a group of foreign importers, in a given market. The purpose of the project is to provide information to an appropriate target audience regarding the attributes, characteristics, and proper use of the U.S. commodity. A QSP project addresses a single market/commodity combination. As a general matter, QSP projects should conform to the following guidelines: E:\FR\FM\04APN1.SGM 04APN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 81, Number 64 (Monday, April 4, 2016)]
[Notices]
[Pages 19120-19122]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2016-07633]


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

DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

Commodity Credit Corporation


Notice of Funds Availability: Inviting Applications for the 
Technical Assistance for Specialty Crops Program

    Announcement Type: New.
    Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number: 10.604.
SUMMARY: The Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) announces that it is 
inviting proposals for the 2017 Technical Assistance for Specialty 
Crops (TASC) program. The intended effect of this notice is to solicit 
applications from the private sector and from government agencies for 
fiscal year 2017 and to set out criteria for the award of funds in 
October 2016. The TASC program is administered by personnel of the 
Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS).

DATES: To be considered for funding, applications must be received by 5 
p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, June 3, 2016. Any applications received 
after this time will be considered only if funds are still available.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Entities wishing to apply for funding 
assistance should contact the Program Operations Division, Office of 
Trade Programs, Foreign Agricultural Service by courier: Room 6512, 
1400 Independence Ave. SW., Washington, DC 20250, or by phone: (202) 
720-4327, or by fax: (202) 720-9361, or by email: 
podadmin@fas.usda.gov. Information is also available on the FAS Web 
site at http://www.fas.usda.gov/programs/technical-assistance-specialty-crops-tasc.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

A. Funding Opportunity Description

    Authority: The TASC program is authorized by section 3205 of Pub. 
L. 107-171. TASC regulations appear at 7 CFR part 1487.
    Purpose: The TASC program is designed to assist U.S. organizations 
by providing funding for projects that address sanitary, phytosanitary, 
or technical barriers that prohibit or threaten the export of U.S. 
specialty crops. U.S. specialty crops, for the purpose of the TASC 
program, are defined to include all cultivated plants, or the products 
thereof, produced in the United States except wheat, feed grains, 
oilseeds, cotton, rice, peanuts, sugar, and tobacco.
    Prior to the enactment of the Agricultural Act of 2014 (Act) on 
February 7, 2014, the TASC program was not available to address 
technical barriers to trade except for those that were related to 
sanitary or phytosanitary issues. The Act amended the statute 
authorizing the TASC program to allow the program to be used to address 
technical barriers to trade regardless of whether the barriers are 
related to a sanitary or phytosanitary barrier. The TASC regulations 
have been amended to reflect the recent statutory change.
    As a general matter, TASC program projects should be designed to 
address the following criteria:
     Projects should identify and address a sanitary, 
phytosanitary, or technical barrier that prohibits or threatens the 
export of U.S. specialty crops;
     Projects should demonstrably benefit the represented 
industry rather than a specific company or brand;
     Projects must address barriers to exports of commercially-
available U.S. specialty crops for which barrier removal would 
predominantly benefit U.S. exports; and
     Projects should include an explanation as to what 
specifically could not be accomplished without Federal funding 
assistance and why the participating organization(s) would be unlikely 
to carry out the project without such assistance.
    Examples of expenses that CCC may agree to reimburse under the TASC 
program include, but are not limited to: Initial pre-clearance 
programs, export protocol and work plan support, seminars and 
workshops, study tours, field surveys, development of pest lists, pest 
and disease research, reasonable logistical and administrative support, 
and travel and per diem expenses.

B. Award Information

    In general, all qualified proposals received before the specified 
application deadline will compete for funding. The limited funds and 
the range of barriers affecting the exports of U.S. specialty crops 
worldwide preclude CCC from approving large budgets for individual 
projects. Proposals requesting more than $500,000 in any given year 
will not be considered. Additionally, private entities may submit 
multi-year proposals that may be considered in the context of a 
detailed strategic implementation plan. The maximum duration of an 
activity is five years. Funding in such cases may, at FAS' discretion, 
be provided one year at a time with commitments beyond the first year 
subject to interim evaluations and funding availability. In order to 
validate funding eligibility, proposals must specify previous years of 
TASC funding for each proposed activity/title/market/constraint 
combination. Government

[[Page 19121]]

entities are not eligible for multi-year funding.
    Applicants may submit multiple proposals, and applicants with 
previously approved TASC proposals may apply for additional funding. 
The number of approved projects that a TASC participant can have 
underway at any given time is five. Please see 7 CFR part 1487 for 
additional restrictions.
    FAS will consider providing either grant funds as direct assistance 
to U.S. organizations or technical assistance on behalf of U.S. 
organizations, provided that the organization submits timely and 
qualified proposals. FAS will review all proposals against the 
evaluation criteria contained in the program regulations.
    Funding for successful proposals will be provided through specific 
agreements. These agreements will incorporate the proposal as approved 
by FAS. FAS must approve in advance any subsequent changes to the 
project. FAS or another Federal agency may be involved in the 
implementation of approved projects.

C. Eligibility Information

    1. Eligible Applicants: Any U.S. organization, private or 
government, with a demonstrated role or interest in exporting U.S. 
agricultural commodities may apply to the program. Government 
organizations consist of Federal, State, and local agencies. Private 
organizations include non-profit trade associations, universities, 
agricultural cooperatives, state regional trade groups, and private 
companies.
    Foreign organizations, whether government or private, may 
participate as third parties in activities carried out by U.S. 
organizations, but are not eligible for direct funding assistance from 
the program.
    2. Cost Sharing or Matching: FAS considers the applicant's 
willingness to contribute resources, including cash, goods, and 
services of the U.S. industry and foreign third parties, when 
determining which proposals are approved for funding.
    3. Funding Justification: Proposals should include a justification 
for funding assistance from the program--an explanation as to what 
specifically could not be accomplished without Federal funding 
assistance and why the participating organization(s) would be unlikely 
to carry out the project without such assistance.

D. Application and Submission Information

    1. Application through the Unified Export Strategy (UES): 
Organizations are strongly encouraged to submit their applications to 
FAS through the web-based UES application. Using the UES application 
process reduces paperwork and expedites FAS's processing and review 
cycle. Applicants planning to use the UES system must contact FAS' 
Program Operations Division to obtain site access information, 
including a user ID and password. The UES Internet-based application 
may be found at the following URL address: https://www.fas.usda.gov/ues/webapp/.
    Although FAS highly recommends applying via the web-based UES 
application, applicants have the option of submitting an electronic 
version to FAS at podadmin@fas.usda.gov.
    2. Content and Form of Application Submission: All TASC proposals 
must contain complete information about the proposed projects as 
described in Sec.  1487.5(b) of the TASC program regulations. In 
addition, in accordance with the Office of Management and Budget's 
policy directive (68 FR 38402 (June 27, 2003)) regarding the need to 
identify entities that are receiving government awards, all applicants 
must submit a Dun and Bradstreet Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) 
number. An applicant may request a DUNS number at no cost by calling 
the dedicated toll-free DUNS number request line at (866) 705-5711.
    In addition, in accordance with 2 CFR part 25, each entity that 
applies to the TASC and does not qualify for an exemption under 2 CFR 
25.110 must:
    (i) Provide a valid DUNS number in each application or plan it 
submits to CCC;
    (ii) Be registered in the System for Award Management (SAM) prior 
to submitting an application or plan; and
    (iii) Continue to maintain an active SAM registration with current 
information at all times during which it has an active Federal award or 
an application or plan under consideration by CCC.
    Similarly, in accordance with 2 CFR part 170, each entity that 
applies to the TASC program and does not qualify for an exception under 
2 CFR 170.110(b) must ensure it has the necessary processes and systems 
in place to comply with the applicable reporting requirements of 2 CFR 
part 170 should it receive TASC funding.
    Incomplete applications and applications that do not otherwise 
conform to this announcement will not be accepted for review.
    3. Submission Dates and Times: TASC proposals are reviewed on a 
rolling basis during the fiscal year as long as TASC funding is 
available as set forth below:
     Proposals received by 5 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, June 
3, 2016, will be considered for funding with other proposals received 
by that date;
     Proposals not approved for funding during the review 
period will be reconsidered for funding after the review period only if 
the applicant specifically requests such reconsideration in writing, 
and only if funding remains available;
     Proposals received after 5 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, 
June 3, 2016, will be considered in the order received for funding only 
if funding remains available.
    Notwithstanding the foregoing, a proposal may be submitted for 
expedited consideration under the TASC Quick Response process if, in 
addition to meeting all requirements of the TASC program, a proposal 
clearly identifies a time-sensitive activity. In these cases, a 
proposal may be submitted at any time for an expedited evaluation. Such 
a proposal must include a specific request for expedited evaluation.
    FAS will track the time and date of receipt of all proposals.
    4. Funding Restrictions: Although funded projects may take place in 
the United States or abroad, all eligible projects must specifically 
address sanitary, phytosanitary, or technical barriers to the export of 
U.S. specialty crops.
    Certain types of expenses are not eligible for reimbursement by the 
program, such as the costs of market research, advertising, or other 
promotional expenses, and will be set forth in the written program 
agreement between CCC and the participant. CCC will also not reimburse 
unreasonable expenditures or any expenditure made prior to approval of 
a proposal.
    5. Other Submission Requirements: All applications must be properly 
submitted through the UES by 5 p.m., Eastern Daylight Time, June 3, 
2016, in order to be considered for funding; late submissions received 
after the deadline will be considered only if funding remains 
available. All applications submitted by email must be received by 5 
p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, June 3, 2016, at podadmin@fas.usda.gov in 
order to receive the same consideration.

E. Application Review Information

    1. Criteria: FAS follows the evaluation criteria set forth in Sec.  
1487.6 of the TASC regulations. Reviewers will evaluate according to 
the following criteria:
    (1) The nature of the specific export barrier and the extent to 
which the proposal is likely to successfully remove, resolve, or 
mitigate that barrier (12.5%);

[[Page 19122]]

    (2) The potential trade impact of the proposed project on market 
retention, market access, and market expansion, including the potential 
for expanding commercial sales in the targeted market (12.5%);
    (3) The completeness and viability of the proposal. Among other 
things, this can include the cost of the project and the amount of 
other resources dedicated to the project, including cash, goods, and 
services of the U.S. industry and foreign third parties (15%);
    (4) The ability of the organization to provide an experienced staff 
with the requisite technical and trade experience to execute the 
proposal (15%);
    (5) The extent to which the proposal is targeted to a market in 
which the United States is generally competitive (17.5%);
    (6) The degree to which time is essential to addressing specific 
export barriers (5%);
    (7) The ability of the applicant to provide a broad base of 
producer representation (12.5%);
    (8) The effectiveness and potential of the performance measures 
(10%);
    2. Review and Selection Process: FAS will review proposals for 
eligibility and will evaluate each proposal against the criteria 
referred to above. The purpose of this review is to identify 
meritorious proposals, recommend an appropriate funding level for each 
proposal based upon these factors, and submit the proposals and funding 
recommendations to the Deputy Administrator, Office of Trade Programs. 
FAS may, when appropriate, request the assistance of other U.S. 
government subject area experts in evaluating the merits of a proposal.

F. Award Administration Information

    1. Federal Award Notices: FAS will notify each applicant in writing 
of the final disposition of the submitted application. FAS will send an 
approval letter and agreement to each approved applicant. The approval 
letter and agreement will specify the terms and conditions applicable 
to the project, including levels of funding, timelines for 
implementation, and written evaluation requirements.
    2. Administrative and National Policy Requirements: The agreements 
will incorporate the details of each project as approved by FAS. Each 
agreement will identify terms and conditions pursuant to which CCC will 
reimburse certain costs of each project. Agreements will also outline 
the responsibilities of the participant. Interested parties should 
review the TASC program regulations found at 7 CFR part 1487 in 
addition to this announcement. TASC program regulations are available 
at the following URL address: http://www.fas.usda.gov/programs/technical-assistance-specialty-crops-tasc. Hard copies may be obtained 
by contacting the Program Operations Division at (202) 720-4327.
    3. Reporting: TASC participants will be required to submit regular 
interim reports and a final performance report, each of which evaluate 
the TASC project using the performance measures presented in the 
approved proposal, as set forth in the written program agreement.

G. Federal Awarding Agency Contact

    For additional information and assistance, contact the Program 
Operations Division, Office of Trade Programs, Foreign Agricultural 
Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture by courier: Room 6512, 1400 
Independence Ave. SW., Washington, DC 20250, or by phone: (202) 720-
4327, or by fax: (202) 720-9361, or by e-mail: podadmin@fas.usda.gov.

    Signed at Washington, DC on the 25th of March, 2016.
Bryce Quick,
Acting Administrator, Foreign Agricultural Service, and Vice President, 
Commodity Credit Corporation.
[FR Doc. 2016-07633 Filed 4-1-16; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 3410-10-P