Grant Guideline; Notice, 58980-58995 [2021-23227]

Download as PDF 58980 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 203 / Monday, October 25, 2021 / Notices Year (January to December) to ensure flood protection releases in November and December are credited toward apportionment. The full Study Board report and recommendations can be found by visiting ijc.org/en/srsb. Commissioners will be present to hear comments on the Study Board’s report recommendations at the above referenced virtual public hearing on November 3, 2021. A public comment period on the ISRSB’s report will also be open through November 15, 2021. Public input is essential to the Commission’s consideration of a recommendation to the governments of the United States and Canada. The International Joint Commission was established under the Boundary Waters Treaty of 1909 to help the United States and Canada prevent and resolve disputes over the use of the waters the two countries share. The Commission’s responsibilities include investigating and reporting on issues of concern when asked by the governments of the two countries. For more information, visit the IJC website at ijc.org. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Christina Chiasson (Ottawa) (613) 293– 1031 at christina.chiasson@ijc.org or Jeff Kart (Washington, DC) (989) 372–1229 at jeff.kart@ijc.org Susan E. Daniel, Acting Secretary, U.S. Section, International Joint Commission, Department of State. [FR Doc. 2021–23146 Filed 10–22–21; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4710–14–P STATE JUSTICE INSTITUTE Grant Guideline; Notice AGENCY: State Justice Institute. ACTION: Grant Guideline for FY 2022. This guideline sets forth the administrative, programmatic, and financial requirements attendant to Fiscal Year 2022 State Justice Institute grants. DATES: October 25, 2021. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Jonathan Mattiello, Executive Director, State Justice Institute, 12700 Fair Lakes Circle, Suite 340, Fairfax, VA 22033, 703–660–4979, jonathan.mattiello@ sji.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Pursuant to the State Justice Institute Act of 1984 (42 U.S.C. 10701 et seq.), the State Justice Institute is authorized to award grants, cooperative agreements, and contracts to State and local courts, nonprofit organizations, and others for the purpose of improving the quality of jspears on DSK121TN23PROD with NOTICES1 SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:32 Oct 22, 2021 Jkt 256001 justice in the state courts of the United States. The following Grant Guideline is adopted by the State Justice Institute for FY 2022. Table of Contents II. Grant Application Deadlines I. Eligibility II. Grant Application Deadlines III. The Mission of the State Justice Institute IV. Grant Types V. Application and Submission Information VI. How To Apply VII. Post Award Reporting Requirements VIII. Compliance Requirements IX. Financial Requirements X. Grant Adjustments I. Eligibility Pursuant to the State Justice Institute Act of 1984 (42 U.S.C. 10701 et seq.), the State Justice Institute (SJI) is authorized to award grants, cooperative agreements, and contracts to State and local courts, national nonprofit organizations, and others for the purpose of improving the quality of justice in the State courts of the United States. SJI is authorized by Congress to award grants, cooperative agreements, and contracts to the following entities and types of organizations: • State and local courts and their agencies (42 U.S.C. 10705(b)(1)(A)). • National nonprofit organizations controlled by, operating in conjunction with, and serving the judicial branches of State governments (42 U.S.C. 10705(b)(1)(B)). • National nonprofit organizations for the education and training of judges and support personnel of the judicial branch of State governments (42 U.S.C. 10705(b)(1)(C)). An applicant is considered a national education and training applicant under section 10705(b)(1)(C) if: D The principal purpose or activity of the applicant is to provide education and training to State and local judges and court personnel; and D The applicant demonstrates a record of substantial experience in the field of judicial education and training. • Other eligible grant recipients (42 U.S.C. 10705 (b)(2)(A) through (D)). D Provided that the objectives of the project can be served better, SJI is also authorized to make awards to: Æ Nonprofit organizations with expertise in judicial administration Æ Institutions of higher education Æ Individuals, partnerships, firms, corporations (for-profit organizations must waive their fees) Æ Private agencies with expertise in judicial administration D SJI may also make awards to State or local agencies and institutions other than courts for services that cannot be adequately provided through PO 00000 Frm 00122 Fmt 4703 nongovernmental arrangements (42 U.S.C. 10705(b)(3)). SJI is prohibited from awarding grants to Federal, tribal, and international courts. Sfmt 4703 The SJI Board of Directors makes awards on a Federal fiscal year quarterly basis. Applications may be submitted at any time but will be considered for award based only on the timetable below. TABLE 1—APPLICATION DEADLINES BY FEDERAL FISCAL YEAR QUARTER Federal fiscal year quarter 1 2 3 4 ................................ ................................ ................................ ................................ Application due date November 1. February 1. May 1. August 1. To be considered timely, an application must be submitted by the application deadline noted above. Applicants must use the SJI Grants Management System (GMS) to submit all applications and post-award documents. The SJI GMS is accessible at https://gms.sji.gov. The SJI urges applicants to submit applications at least 72 hours prior to the application due date to allow time for the applicant to receive an application acceptance message and to correct in a timely fashion any problems that may arise, such as missing or incomplete forms. Questions related to the SJI Grant Program or the SJI GMS should be directed to contact@sji.gov. III. The Mission of the State Justice Institute The State Justice Institute Authorization Act of 1984 (42 U.S.C. 10701 et seq.) established SJI to improve the administration of justice in the State courts of the United States. Incorporated in the State of Virginia as a private, nonprofit corporation, SJI is charged, by statute, with the responsibility to: • Direct a national program of financial assistance designed to ensure that each citizen of the United States is provided ready access to a fair and effective system of justice; • Foster coordination and cooperation with the Federal judiciary; • Promote recognition of the importance of the separation of powers doctrine to an independent judiciary; and • Encourage education for judges and support personnel of State court systems E:\FR\FM\25OCN1.SGM 25OCN1 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 203 / Monday, October 25, 2021 / Notices through national and State organizations. To accomplish these broad objectives, SJI is authorized to provide funding to State courts, national organizations that support and are supported by State courts, national judicial education organizations, and other organizations that can assist in improving the quality of justice in the State courts. Through the award of grants, contracts, and cooperative agreements, SJI is authorized to perform the following activities: • Support technical assistance, demonstrations, special projects, research, and training to improve the administration of justice in the State courts; • Provide for the preparation, publication, and dissemination of information regarding State judicial systems; • Participate in joint projects with Federal agencies and other private grantors; • Evaluate or provide for the evaluation of programs and projects to determine their impact upon the quality of criminal, civil, and juvenile justice and the extent to which they have contributed to improving the quality of justice in the State courts; • Encourage and assist in furthering judicial education; and • Encourage, assist, and serve in a consulting capacity to State and local courts in the development, maintenance, and coordination of criminal, civil, and juvenile justice programs and services. SJI is supervised by a Board of Directors appointed by the U.S. President, with the advice and consent of the U.S. Senate. The SJI Board of Directors is statutorily composed of six judges; a State court administrator and four members of the public, no more than two of the same political party. Additional information about SJI, including a list of members of the SJI Board of Directors, is available at https://www.sji.gov. jspears on DSK121TN23PROD with NOTICES1 A. Priority Investment Areas The SJI Board of Directors has established Priority Investment Areas for grant funding. SJI will allocate significant financial resources through grant-making for these Priority Investment Areas. The Priority Investment Areas are applicable to all grant types. SJI strongly encourages potential grant applicants to consider projects addressing one or more of these Priority Investment Areas and to integrate the following factors into each proposed project: VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:00 Oct 22, 2021 Jkt 256001 • Evidence based, data-driven decision making; • Cross-sector collaboration; • Systemic approaches (as opposed to standalone programs); • Institutionalization of new court processes and procedures; • Ease of replication; and • Sustainability For FY 2022, the Priority Investment Areas are listed below in no specific order. 1. Opioids and Other Dangerous Drugs, and Behavioral Health Responses. • Behavioral Health Disparities— Research indicates that justice-involved persons have significantly greater proportions of mental, substance use, and co-occurring disorders than are found in the public. SJI supports crosssector collaboration and information sharing that emphasizes policies and practices designed to improve court responses to justice-involved persons with behavioral health and other cooccurring needs. • Trauma Informed Approaches— Judges, court staff, system stakeholders and court-involved persons (defendants, respondents, and victims) alike may be impacted by prior trauma. This is particularly, but not exclusively, true for those with mental illness and/or substance use disorders. SJI supports trauma-informed training, policies, and practices in all aspects of the judicial process. 2. Promoting Access to Justice and Procedural Fairness. • Self-Represented Litigation—SJI promotes court-based solutions to address increases in self-represented litigants; helps make courts more userfriendly by simplifying court forms; provides one-on-one assistance; develops guides, handbooks, and instructions on how to proceed; develops court-based self-help centers; and uses internet technologies to increase access. These projects are improving outcomes for litigants and saving valuable court resources. • Language Access—SJI supports language access in the State courts through remote interpretation (outside the courtroom), interpreter training and certification, courtroom services (plain language forms, websites, etc.), and addressing the requirements of Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (42 U.S.C. 2000d et seq.) and the Omnibus Crime Control and Safe Streets Act (34 U.S.C. 10101 et seq.). • Procedural Fairness—A fundamental role of courts is to ensure fair processes and just outcomes for litigants. SJI promotes the integration of research-based procedural fairness PO 00000 Frm 00123 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 58981 principles, policies, and practices into State court operations to increase public trust and confidence in the court system, reduce recidivism, and increase compliance with court orders. 3. Reducing Disparities and Protecting Victims, Underserved, and Vulnerable Populations. • Disparities in Justice—SJI supports research and data-driven approaches that examine statutory requirements, policies, and practices that result in disparities for justice-involved persons. These disparities can be because of inequities in socioeconomic, racial, ethnic, gender, age, health, or other factors. In addition to identifying disparities, SJI promotes systemic approaches to reducing disparities. • Human Trafficking—SJI addresses the impact of Federal and State human trafficking laws on the State courts, and the challenges faced by State courts in dealing with cases involving trafficking victims and their families. These efforts are intended to empower State courts to identify victims, link them with vital services, and hold traffickers accountable. • Rural Justice—Rural areas and their justice systems routinely have fewer resources and more barriers than their urban counterparts, such as availability of services, lack of transportation, and smaller workforces. Programs and practices that are effective in urban areas are often inappropriate and or lack supported research for implementation in rural areas. SJI supports rural courts by identifying promising and best practices, and promoting resources, education, and training opportunities uniquely designed for rural courts and court users. • Guardianship, Conservatorship, and Elder Issues—SJI assists courts in improving court oversight of guardians and conservators for the elderly and incapacitated adults through visitor programs, electronic reporting, and training. 4. Advancing Justice Reform. • Criminal Justice Reform—SJI assists State courts in taking a leadership role in reviewing fines, fees, and bail practices to ensure processes are fair and access to justice is assured; implements alternative forms of sanction; develops processes for indigency review; promotes transparency, governance, and structural reforms that promote access to justice, accountability, and oversight; and implements innovative diversion and reentry programs that serve to improve outcomes for justice-involved persons and the justice system. • Juvenile Justice Reform—SJI supports innovative projects that E:\FR\FM\25OCN1.SGM 25OCN1 jspears on DSK121TN23PROD with NOTICES1 58982 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 203 / Monday, October 25, 2021 / Notices advance best practices in handling dependency and delinquency cases; promote effective court oversight of juveniles in the justice system; address the impact of trauma on juvenile behavior; assist the courts in identification of appropriate provision of services for juveniles; and address juvenile reentry. • Family and Civil Justice Reform— SJI promotes court-based solutions for the myriad of civil case types, such as domestic relations, housing, employment, debt collection, which are overwhelming court dockets. Transforming Courts. • Emergency Response and Recovery—Courts must be prepared for natural disasters and public health emergencies and institutionalize the most effective and efficient practices and processes that evolve during response and recovery. SJI supports projects that look to the future of judicial service delivery by identifying and replicating innovations and alternate means of conducting court business due to public health emergencies such as pandemics and natural disasters such as hurricanes, earthquakes, and wildfires. • Cybersecurity—Courts must also be prepared for cyberattacks on court systems, such as denial of service and ransomware attacks on court case management systems, websites, and other critical information technology infrastructure. SJI supports projects that assist courts in preparing for and responding to these attacks, and share lessons learned to courts across the United States. • Technology—Courts must integrate technological advances into daily judicial processes and proceedings. SJI supports projects that institutionalize the innovative technology that has successfully advanced the use of electronic filing and payment systems, online dispute resolution, remote work, and virtual court proceedings. SJI promotes projects that streamline case filing and management processes, thereby reducing time and costs to litigants and the courts; provide online access to courts to litigants so that disputes can be resolved more efficiently; and make structural changes to court services that enable them to evolve into an online environment. • Strategic Planning—Courts must rely on a deliberate process to determine organizational values, mission, vision, goals, and objectives. SJI promotes structured planning processes and organizational assessments to assist courts in setting priorities, allocating resources, and identifying areas for ongoing improvements in efficiency and VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:00 Oct 22, 2021 Jkt 256001 effectiveness. Strategic planning includes elements of court governance, data collection, management, analysis, sharing, and sustainable court governance models that drive decisionmaking. Strategic plans and outcomes should be communicated to judges, court staff, justice partners, and the public. • Training, Education, and Workforce Development—State courts require a workforce that is adaptable to public demands for services. SJI supports projects that focus on the tools needed to enable judges, court managers, and staff to be innovative, forward-thinking court leaders. IV. Grant Types SJI supports five types of grants: Project, Technical Assistance (TA), Curriculum Adaptation and Training (CAT), Strategic Initiatives Grants (SIG) Program, and the Education Support Program (ESP). A brief description of each type of grant is below. A. Project Grant Project grants are intended to support innovative education and training, research and evaluation, demonstration, and technical assistance projects that can improve the administration of justice in State courts locally or nationwide. State court and national nonprofit applicants may request up to $300,000 for 36 months. Local court applicants may request up to $200,000 for 24 months. Examples of expenses not covered by Project Grants include the salaries, benefits, or travel of full-or part-time court employees. Funding may not be used for the ordinary, routine operations of court systems. All applicants for Project Grants must contribute a cash match greater than or equal to the SJI award amount. This means that grant awards by SJI must be matched at least dollar for dollar by grant applicants. For example, an applicant seeking a $300,000 Project Grant must provide a cash match of at least $300,000. Applicants may contribute the required cash match directly or in cooperation with third parties. Funding from other federal departments or agencies may not be used for cash match. B. Technical Assistance (TA) Grant TA grants are intended to provide State or local courts, or regional court associations, with sufficient support to obtain expert assistance to diagnose a problem, develop a response to that problem, and implement any needed changes. TA Grants may not exceed $75,000 or 12 months in duration. In calculating project duration, applicants PO 00000 Frm 00124 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 are cautioned to fully consider the time required to issue a request for proposals, negotiate a contract with the selected provider, and execute the project. Funds may not be used for salaries, benefits, or travel of full- or part-time court employees. Applicants for TA Grants are required to contribute a total match (cash and inkind) of not less than 50 percent of the SJI award amount, of which 20 percent must be cash. For example, an applicant seeking a $75,000 TA grant must provide a $37,500 match, of which up to $30,000 can be in-kind and not less than $7,500 must be cash. Funding from other federal departments and agencies may not be used for cash match. C. Curriculum Adaptation and Training (CAT) Grant CAT Grants are intended to: (1) Enable courts or national court associations to modify and adapt model curricula, course modules, or conference programs to meet States’ or local jurisdictions’ educational needs; train instructors to present portions or all of the curricula; and pilot-test them to determine their appropriateness, quality, and effectiveness; or (2) conduct judicial branch education and training programs, led by either expert or inhouse personnel, designed to prepare judges and court personnel for innovations, reforms, and/or new technologies recently adopted by grantee courts. CAT grants may not exceed $40,000 or 12 months in duration. Examples of expenses not covered by CAT grants include the salaries, benefits, or travel of full-or part-time court employees. Applicants for CAT Grants are required to contribute a total match (cash and in-kind) of not less than 50 percent of the SJI award amount, of which 20 percent must be cash. For example, an applicant seeking a $40,000 CAT grant must provide a $20,000 match, of which up to $16,000 can be in-kind and not less than $4,000 must be cash. Funding from other federal departments and agencies may not be used for cash match. D. Strategic Initiatives Grant (SIG) Program The SIG program provides SJI with the flexibility to address national court issues as they occur and develop solutions to those problems. This is an innovative approach where SJI uses its expertise and the expertise and knowledge of its grantees to address key issues facing State courts across the United States. The funding is used for grants or contractual services and is handled at E:\FR\FM\25OCN1.SGM 25OCN1 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 203 / Monday, October 25, 2021 / Notices the discretion of the SJI Board of Directors and staff. SJI requires the submission of a concept paper prior to the full application process. Only applicants that submit an approved concept paper will be invited to submit a full application for funding. Potential applicants are strongly encouraged to contact SJI prior to submitting a concept paper for guidance on this initial step. application is true and complete; submission of the application has been authorized by the applicant; and, if funding for the proposed project is approved, the applicant will comply with the requirements and conditions of the award, including the assurances set forth in Form D in section V.A.4, Assurances (Form D) of this guideline. E. Education Support Program (ESP) for Judges and Court Managers The ESP is intended to enhance the skills, knowledge, and abilities of State court judges and court managers by enabling them to attend out-of-state, or to enroll in online, educational and training programs sponsored by national and State providers they could not otherwise attend or take online because of limited State, local, and personal budgets. The program covers only the cost of tuition up to a maximum of $1,000 per course. The ESP is administered by the National Judicial College (NJC) and the National Center for State Courts (NCSC)/ Institute for Court Management (ICM), in partnership with SJI. For NJC courses, register online at https:// www.judges.org/courses. For ICM courses, register online at https:// www.ncsc.org/education-and-careers/ icm-courses. During the respective registration processes, each website will ask whether a scholarship is needed to participate. Follow the online instructions to request tuition assistance. An application from a State or local court must include a copy of Form B signed by the State’s chief justice or State court administrator. The signature denotes that the proposed project has been approved by the State’s highest court or the agency or council it has designated. Further, the signature denotes, if applicable, a cash match reduction has been requested, and that if SJI approves funding for the project, the court or the specified designee will receive, administer, and be accountable for the awarded funds. V. Application and Submission Information This section describes in detail what an application should include. An applicant should anticipate that if it fails to submit an application that contains all the specified project components, it may negatively affect the review of the application. Applicants must use the SJI GMS to submit all applications and post-award documents. The SJI GMS is accessible at https:// gms.sji.gov. jspears on DSK121TN23PROD with NOTICES1 A. Application Components Applicants for SJI grants must submit the following forms and/or documents via the SJI GMS: 1. Application Form (Form A) The application form requests basic information regarding the proposed project, the applicant, and the total amount of funding requested from SJI. It also requires the signature of an individual authorized to certify on behalf of the applicant that the information contained in the VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:00 Oct 22, 2021 Jkt 256001 2. Certificate of State Approval (Form B) 3. Budget Form (Form C) Applicants must provide a detailed budget and a budget narrative providing an explanation of the basis for the estimates in each budget category. If funds from other sources are required to conduct the project, either as match or to support other aspects of the project, the source, current status of the request, and anticipated decision date must be provided. 4. Assurances (Form D) Form D lists the statutory, regulatory, and policy requirements with which recipients of SJI funds must comply. 5. Disclosure of Lobbying Activities (Form E) Applicants other than units of State or local government are required to disclose whether they, or another entity that is part of the same organization as the applicant, have advocated a position before Congress on any issue, and to identify the specific subjects of their lobbying efforts. 6. Project Abstract The abstract should highlight the purposes, goals, methods, and anticipated benefits of the proposed project. It should not exceed one singlespaced page and should be uploaded on the ‘‘Attachments’’ tab in SJI GMS. 7. Program Narrative The program narrative for an application may not exceed 25 doublespaced pages on 81⁄2- by 11-inch paper with 1-inch margins, using a standard 12-point font. The pages should be numbered. This page limit does not PO 00000 Frm 00125 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 58983 include the forms, the abstract, the budget narrative, or any additional attachments. The program narrative should address the following, noting any specific areas to address by grant type: a. Statement of Need. Applicants must explain the critical need they are facing, and how SJI funds will enable them to meet this critical need. The applicants must also explain why State or local resources are not sufficient to fully support the costs of the project. Applicants must provide a verified source for the data that supports the statement of the problem (i.e., Federal, State, and local databases). The discussion should include specific references to the relevant literature and to the experience in the field. SJI continues to make all grant reports and most grant products available online through the NCSC Library and Digital Archive. Applicants are required to conduct a search of the NCSC Library and Digital Archive on the topic areas they are addressing. This search should include SJI-funded grants and previous projects not supported by SJI. Searches for SJI grant reports and other State court resources begin with the NCSC Library section. Applicants must discuss the results of their research, how they plan to incorporate the previous work into their proposed project, and if the project will differentiate from prior work. b. Project Grants. If the project is to be conducted in any specific location(s), applicants should discuss the particular needs of the project site(s) the project would address and why existing programs, procedures, services, or other resources do not meet those needs. If the project is not site-specific, the applicants should discuss the problems that the proposed project would address, and why existing programs, procedures, services, or other resources cannot adequately resolve those problems. In addition, applicants should describe how, if applicable, the project will be sustained in the future through existing resources. c. TA Grants. Applicants should explain why State or local resources are unable to fully support the modification and presentation of the model curriculum. The applicants should also describe the potential for replicating or integrating the adapted curriculum in the future using State or local funds once it has been successfully adapted and tested. In addition, applicants should describe how, if applicable, the project will be sustained in the future through existing resources. d. CAT Grants (curriculum adaptation). Applicants should explain E:\FR\FM\25OCN1.SGM 25OCN1 58984 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 203 / Monday, October 25, 2021 / Notices why State or local resources are unable to fully support the modification and presentation of the model curriculum. The applicants should also describe the potential for replicating or integrating the adapted curriculum in the future using State or local funds once it has been successfully adapted and tested. e. CAT Grants (training). The applicants should describe the court reform or initiative prompting the need for training. Applicants should also discuss how the proposed training will help them implement planned changes at the court, and why State or local resources are not sufficient to fully support the costs of the required training. f. SIGs. Applicants should detail the origin of the project (i.e., requested by SJI or a request to SJI) and provide a detailed description about the issue of national impact the proposed project will address, including any evaluations, reports, resolutions, or other data to support the need statement. jspears on DSK121TN23PROD with NOTICES1 B. Project Description and Objectives The applicants should include a clear, concise statement of what the proposed project is intended to accomplish and how those objectives will be met. Applicants should delineate the tasks to be performed in achieving the project objectives and the methods to be used for accomplishing each task. Applicants must describe how the proposed project addresses one or more Priority Investment Areas. If the project does not address one or more Priority Investment Areas, the applicants must provide an explanation as to the reason. 1. Application Details by Project Type a. Project grants. The applicants should include detailed descriptions of tasks, methods, and evaluations. For example: • Research and evaluation projects. The applicants should include the data sources, data collection strategies, variables to be examined, and analytic procedures to be used for conducting the research or evaluation and ensuring the validity and general applicability of the results. For projects involving human subjects, the discussion of methods should address the procedures for obtaining respondents’ informed consent, ensuring the respondents’ privacy and freedom from risk or harm, and protecting others who are not the subjects of research but would be affected by the research. If the potential exists for risk or harm to human subjects, a discussion should be included that explains the value of the proposed research and the methods to be used to minimize or eliminate such VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:00 Oct 22, 2021 Jkt 256001 risk. Refer to section VIII.R.3, Human Subject Protection of this guideline for additional information. • Education and training projects. The applicants should include the adult education techniques to be used in designing and presenting the program, including the teaching and learning objectives of the educational design, the teaching methods to be used, and the opportunities for structured interaction among the participants. The opportunities applicants should include are: How faculty would be recruited, selected, and trained; the proposed number and length of the conferences, courses, seminars, or workshops to be conducted and the estimated number of persons who would attend them; the materials to be provided and how they would be developed; and the cost to participants. • Demonstration projects. The applicants should include the demonstration sites and the reasons they were selected or, if the sites have not been chosen, how they would be identified; how the applicants would obtain the cooperation of demonstration sites; and how the program or procedures would be implemented and monitored. • Technical assistance projects. The applicants should explain the types of assistance that would be provided, the particular issues and problems for which assistance would be provided, the type of assistance determined, how suitable providers would be selected and briefed, and how reports would be reviewed. b. TA Grants. Applicants must identify which organization or individual will be hired to provide the assistance, and how the consultant was selected. The applicants must describe the tasks the consultant will perform, and how the tasks will be accomplished. If a consultant has not yet been identified, the applicants must describe the procedures and criteria that will be used to select the consultant (applicants are expected to follow their jurisdictions’ normal procedures for procuring consultant services). If the consultant has been identified, the applicants should provide a letter from that individual or organization documenting interest in and availability for the project, as well as the consultant’s ability to complete the assignment within the proposed time frame and for the proposed cost. The consultant must agree to submit a detailed written report to the court and SJI upon completion of the technical assistance. Applicants should then describe the steps that have been or will be taken to facilitate implementation of PO 00000 Frm 00126 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 the consultant’s recommendations upon completion of the technical assistance. The applicants should then address the following questions: • What specific tasks will the consultant and court staff undertake? • What is the schedule for completion of each required task and the entire project? • How will the applicant oversee the project and provide guidance to the consultant, and who at the court or regional court association would be responsible for coordinating all project tasks and submitting quarterly progress and financial status reports? c. CAT Grants (curriculum adaptation). The applicants must provide the title of the curriculum that will be adapted and identify the entity that originally developed the curriculum. Applicants should allow at least 90 days between the potential award date and the date of the proposed program to allow sufficient time for planning. This period of time should be reflected in the project timeline. The applicants must also address the following questions: • Why is this education program needed at the present time? • What are the project’s goals? • What are the learning objectives of the adapted curriculum? • What program components would be implemented, and what types of modifications, if any, are anticipated in length, format, learning objectives, teaching methods, or content? • Who would be responsible for adapting the model curriculum? • Who would the participants be, how many would there be, how would they be recruited, and from where would they come (e.g., from a single local jurisdiction, from across the State, from a multi-state region, from across the nation)? The applicants should also provide the proposed timeline, including the project start and end dates, the date(s) the judicial branch education program will be presented, and the process that will be used to modify and present the program. Applicants should also identify who will serve as faculty, and how they will be selected, in addition to the measures taken to facilitate subsequent presentations of the program. d. CAT grants (training). The applicants must identify the tasks the trainer will be expected to perform, which organization or individual will be hired, and, if in-house personnel are not the trainer, how the trainer will be selected. If a trainer has not yet been identified, the applicants must describe the E:\FR\FM\25OCN1.SGM 25OCN1 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 203 / Monday, October 25, 2021 / Notices jspears on DSK121TN23PROD with NOTICES1 procedures and criteria that will be used to select the trainer. If the trainer has been identified, the applicants should provide a letter from that individual or organization documenting interest in and availability for the project, as well as the trainer’s ability to complete the assignment within the proposed time frame and for the proposed cost. In addition, the applicants should address the following questions: • What specific tasks would the trainer and court staff or regional court association members undertake? • What presentation methods will be used? • What is the schedule for completion of each required task and the entire project? • How will the applicant oversee the project and provide guidance to the trainer, and who at the court or affiliated with the regional court association would be responsible for coordinating all project tasks and submitting quarterly progress and financial status reports? • The applicant should explain what steps have been or will be taken to coordinate the implementation of the training. For example, if the support or cooperation of specific court, regional court association officials, committees, other agencies, funding bodies, organizations, or a court other than the applicant will be needed to adopt the reform and initiate the proposed training, how will the applicant secure their involvement in the development and implementation of the training? e. SIGs. The applicants should expand upon the project description and objectives described in the approved concept paper. Any and all feedback and questions submitted by the SJI Board of Directors and staff during the review of the concept paper should also be incorporated into the project design. 2. Dissemination Plan The application must: (1) Explain how and to whom the products would be disseminated; describe how they would benefit the State courts, including how they could be used by judges and court personnel; (2) identify development, production, and dissemination costs covered by the project budget; and (3) present the basis on which products and services developed or provided under the grant would be offered to the court community and the public at large (i.e., whether products would be distributed at no cost to recipients, or if costs are involved, the reason for charging recipients and the estimated price of the product). Ordinarily, applicants should VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:00 Oct 22, 2021 Jkt 256001 schedule all product preparation and distribution activities within the project period. The type of product to be prepared depends on the nature of the project. For example, in most instances, the products of a research, evaluation, or demonstration project should include: (1) An article summarizing the project findings that is publishable in a journal serving the courts community nationally, (2) an executive summary that would be disseminated to the project’s primary audience, or (3) both an article and executive summary. Applicants proposing to conduct empirical research or evaluation projects with national import should describe how they would make their data available for secondary analysis after the grant period. The curricula and other products developed through education and training projects should be designed for use by others and again by the original participants in the course of their duties. Applicants proposing to develop web-based products should provide for sending a notice and description of the document to the appropriate audiences to alert them to the availability of the website or electronic product (i.e., a written report with a reference to the website). Applicants must submit a final draft of all written grant products to SJI for review and approval at least 30 days before the products are submitted for publication or reproduction. For products in website or multimedia format, applicants must provide for SJI review of the product at the treatment, script, rough-cut, and final stages of development, or their equivalents. No grant funds may be obligated for publication or reproduction of a final grant product without the written approval of SJI. Project products should be submitted to SJI electronically in HTML or PDF format. Applicants must also include in all project products a prominent acknowledgment that SJI provided support and a disclaimer paragraph such as, ‘‘This [document, film, videotape, etc.] was developed under [grant/cooperative agreement] number SJI–[insert number] from the State Justice Institute. The points of view expressed are those of the [author(s), filmmaker(s), etc.] and do not necessarily represent the official position or policies of the State Justice Institute.’’ The ‘‘SJI’’ logo must appear on the front cover of a written product or in the opening frames of a website or other multimedia products, unless SJI approves another placement. The SJI PO 00000 Frm 00127 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 58985 logo can be downloaded from SJI’s website: https://www.sji.gov. 3. Staff Capability and Organizational Capacity An applicant that is not a State or local court and has not received a grant from SJI within the past 3 years should indicate whether it is either: (1) A national nonprofit organization controlled by, operating in conjunction with, and serving the judicial branches of State governments, or (2) a national nonprofit organization for the education and training of State court judges and support personnel. If the applicant is a nonjudicial unit of Federal, State, or local government, it must explain whether the proposed services could be adequately provided by nongovernmental entities. Applicants that have not received a grant from SJI within the past 3 years should include a statement describing their capacity to administer grant funds, including the financial systems used to monitor project expenditures (and income, if any), a summary of their past experience in administering grants, and any resources or capabilities they have that would particularly assist in the successful completion of the project. Unless requested otherwise, an applicant that has received a grant from SJI within the past 3 years should describe only the changes in its organizational capacity, tax status, or financial capability that may affect its capacity to administer a grant. If the applicant is a nonprofit organization (other than a university), it must also provide documentation of its 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status as determined by the Internal Revenue Service and a copy of a current certified audit report. For the purpose of this requirement, ‘‘current’’ means no earlier than 2 years prior to the present calendar year. The applicant should include a summary of key staff members’ and consultant’s training and experience that qualify them for conducting and managing the proposed project. Resumes of identified staff should be attached to the application. If one or more key staff members and consultants are not known at the time of the application, a description of the criteria that would be used to select persons for these positions should be included. The applicant should also identify the person who would be responsible for managing and reporting on the financial aspects of the proposed project. 4. Evaluation Projects should include an evaluation plan to determine whether the project met its objectives. The evaluation E:\FR\FM\25OCN1.SGM 25OCN1 58986 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 203 / Monday, October 25, 2021 / Notices should be designed to provide an objective and independent assessment of the effectiveness or usefulness of the training or services provided; the impact of the procedures, technology, or services tested; or the validity and applicability of the research conducted. The evaluation plan should be appropriate to the type of project proposed considering the nature, scope, and magnitude of the project. 5. Sustainability Describe how the project will be sustained after SJI assistance ends. The sustainability plan should describe how current collaborations and evaluations will be used to leverage ongoing resources. SJI encourages applicants to ensure sustainability by coordinating with local, State, and other Federal resources. jspears on DSK121TN23PROD with NOTICES1 C. Budget and Matching State Contribution Applicants must complete a budget in the SJI GMS and upload a budget narrative. The budget narrative should provide the basis for all project-related costs and the sources of any match, as required. The budget narrative should thoroughly and clearly describe every category of expense listed. SJI expects proposed budgets to be complete, cost effective, and allowable (e.g., reasonable, allocable, and necessary for project activities). 1. Prohibited Uses of SJI Funds. To ensure that funds made available are used to supplement and improve the operation of State courts, rather than to support basic court services, funds shall not be used: • To supplant State or local funds supporting a program or activity (such as paying the salary of court employees who would be performing their normal duties as part of the project or paying rent for space that is part of the court’s normal operations). • To construct court facilities or structures. • Solely to purchase equipment. Examples of basic court services include: • Hiring of personnel • Purchase and/or maintenance of equipment • Purchase of software and/or licenses • Purchase of internet access or service • Supplies to support the day-to-day operations of courts The final determination of what constitutes basic court services is made by SJI and is not negotiable. Meals and refreshments are generally not allowable costs unless the applicant or grantee obtains prior written approval VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:00 Oct 22, 2021 Jkt 256001 from SJI. This applies to all awards, including contracts, grants, and cooperative agreements. In general, SJI may approve such costs only in very rare instances where: • Sustenance is not otherwise available (e.g., extremely remote areas); • The size of the event and nearby food and/or beverage vendors would make it impractical to not provide meals and/or refreshments; and/or • A special presentation at a conference requires a plenary address where there is no other time for sustenance to be obtained. Trinkets (items such as hats, mugs, portfolios, t-shirts, coins, gift bags, gift cards, etc.) may not be purchased with SJI grant funding. 2. Justification of Personnel Compensation. The applicants should set forth the amount of time the individuals who would staff the proposed project would devote, the annual salary of each of those persons, and the number of work days per year used for calculating the amount of time or daily rates of those individuals. The applicants should explain any deviations from current rates or established written organizational policies. No grant funds or cash match may be used to pay the salary and related costs for a current or new employee of a court or other unit of government because such funds would constitute a supplantation of State or local funds in violation of 42 U.S.C. 10706(d)(1); this includes new employees hired specifically for the project. The salary and any related costs for a current or new employee of a court or other unit of government may only be accepted as in-kind match. 3. Fringe Benefit Computation. For nongovernmental entities, applicants should provide a description of the fringe benefits provided to employees. If percentages are used, the authority for such use should be presented, as well as a description of the elements included in the determination of the percentage rate. 4. Consultant/Contractual Services and Honoraria. The applicants should describe the tasks each consultant would perform, the estimated total amount to be paid to each consultant, the basis for compensation rates (e.g., the number of days multiplied by the daily consultant rates), and the method for selection. Prior written SJI approval is required for any consultant rate in excess of $800 per day; SJI funds may not be used to pay a consultant more than $1,100 per day. Honorarium payments must be justified in the same manner as consultant payments. PO 00000 Frm 00128 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 5. Travel. Transportation costs and per diem rates must comply with the policies of the applicant organization. If the applicant does not have an established travel policy, then travel rates must be consistent with those established by the Federal Government. The budget narrative should include an explanation of the rate used, including the components of the per diem rate and the basis for the estimated transportation expenses. The purpose of the travel should also be included in the narrative. 6. Equipment. Grant funds may be used to purchase only the equipment necessary to demonstrate a new technological application in a court or that is otherwise essential to accomplishing the objectives of the project. In other words, grant funds cannot be used strictly for the purpose of purchasing equipment. Equipment purchases to support basic court operations will not be approved. Applicants should describe the equipment to be purchased or leased and explain why the acquisition of that equipment is essential to accomplish the project’s goals and objectives. The narrative should clearly identify which equipment is to be leased and which is to be purchased. The method of procurement should also be described. 7. Supplies. Applicants should provide a general description of the supplies necessary to accomplish the goals and objectives of the grant. In addition, the applicants should provide the basis for the amount requested for this expenditure category. 8. Construction. Construction expenses are prohibited. 9. Postage. Anticipated postage costs for project-related mailings, including distribution of the final product(s), should be described in the budget narrative. The cost of special mailings, such as for a survey or for announcing a workshop, should be distinguished from routine mailing costs. The bases for all postage estimates should be included in the budget narrative. 9. Printing/Photocopying. Anticipated costs for printing or photocopying project documents, reports, and publications should be included in the budget narrative, along with the bases used to calculate these estimates. 10. Indirect Costs. Indirect costs are only applicable to organizations that are not State courts or government agencies. Recoverable indirect costs are limited to no more than 75 percent of a grantee’s direct personnel costs, i.e., salaries plus fringe benefits. Applicants should describe the indirect cost rates applicable to the grant in detail. If costs often included within an indirect cost E:\FR\FM\25OCN1.SGM 25OCN1 jspears on DSK121TN23PROD with NOTICES1 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 203 / Monday, October 25, 2021 / Notices rate are charged directly (e.g., a percentage of the time of senior managers to supervise project activities), the applicants should specify that these costs are not included within its approved indirect cost rate. If an applicant has an indirect cost rate or allocation plan approved by any Federal granting agency, a copy of the approved rate agreement must be attached to the application. 11. Matching Requirements. SJI grants require a match, which is the portion of project costs not borne by SJI and includes both cash and in-kind matches as outlined in this paragraph. A cash match is the direct outlay of funds by the grantee or a third party to support the project. Other Federal department and agency funding may not be used for cash match. An in-kind match consists of contributions of time and/or services of current staff members, new employees, space, supplies, etc., made to the project by the grantee or others (e.g., advisory board members) working directly on the project. An in-kind match can also consist of that portion of the grantee’s federally approved indirect cost rate that exceeds the limit of permitted charges (75 percent of salaries and benefits). The grantee is responsible for ensuring that the total amount of match proposed is contributed. If a proposed contribution is not fully met, SJI may reduce the award amount accordingly, to maintain the ratio originally provided for in the award agreement. The match should be expended at the same rate as SJI funding. a. Project Grants. Applicants for Project Grants must contribute a cash match greater than or equal to the SJI award amount. This means that grant awards by SJI must be matched at least dollar for dollar by grant applicants. For example, an applicant seeking a $300,000 Project Grant must provide a cash match of at least $300,000. Applicants may contribute the required cash match directly or in cooperation with third parties. b. TA Grants. Applicants for TA Grants are required to contribute a total match (cash and in-kind) of not less than 50 percent of the SJI award amount, of which 20 percent must be cash. For example, an applicant seeking a $75,000 TA grant must provide a $37,500 match, of which up to $30,000 can be in-kind and not less than $7,500 must be cash. c. CAT Grants. Applicants for CAT Grants are required to contribute a total match (cash and in-kind) of not less than 50 percent of the SJI award amount, of which 20 percent must be cash. For example, an applicant seeking VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:00 Oct 22, 2021 Jkt 256001 a $40,000 CAT grant must provide a $20,000 match, of which up to $16,000 can be in-kind and not less than $4,000 must be cash. Funding from other federal departments and agencies may not be used for cash match. d. SIGs. State and local courts and non-court units of government must provide a dollar-for-dollar cash match for SIG projects. Matching funds may not be required for SIG projects that are awarded to non-court or nongovernmental entities. 12. Letters of Support. Written assurances of support or cooperation should accompany the application letter if the support or cooperation of agencies, funding bodies, organizations, or courts other than the applicant would be needed in order for the consultant to perform the required tasks. Applicants may also submit memorandums of agreement or understanding, as appropriate. 13. Project Timeline. A project timeline detailing each project objective, activity, expected completion date, and responsible person or organization should be included. The plan should include the starting and completion date for each task; the time commitments to the project of key staff and their responsibilities regarding each project task; and the procedures that would ensure that all tasks are performed on time, within budget, and at the highest level of quality. In preparing the project timeline, applicants should make certain that all project activities, including publication or reproduction of project products and their initial dissemination, would occur within the proposed project period. The project timeline must also provide for the submission of Quarterly Progress and Financial Reports within 30 days after the close of each calendar quarter, as well as submission of all final closeout documents. The project timeline may be included in the program narrative or provided as a separate attachment. 14. Other Attachments. Resumes of key project staff may also be included. Additional background material should be attached only if it is essential to impart a clear understanding of the proposed project. Numerous and lengthy appendices are strongly discouraged. D. Application Review Information 1. Selection Criteria. In addition to the criteria detailed below, SJI will consider whether the applicant is a State or local court, a national court support or education organization, a non-court unit of government, or other type of entity eligible to receive grants under SJI’s enabling legislation; the availability of PO 00000 Frm 00129 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 58987 financial assistance from other sources for the project; the diversity of subject matter; geographic diversity; the level and nature of the match that would be provided; reasonableness of the proposed budget; the extent to which the proposed project would also benefit the Federal courts or help State or local courts enforce Federal constitutional and legislative requirements; and the level of appropriations available to SJI in the current year and the amount expected to be available in succeeding fiscal years, when determining which projects to support. 2. Project Grant Applications. Project grant applications will be rated based on the criteria set forth below: • Soundness of the methodology. • Demonstration of need for the project. • Appropriateness of the proposed evaluation design. • If applicable, the key findings and recommendations of the most recent evaluation and the proposed responses to those findings and recommendations. • Applicant’s management plan and organizational capabilities. • Qualifications of the project’s staff. • Products and benefits resulting from the project, including the extent to which the project will have long-term benefits for State courts across the nation. • Degree to which the findings, procedures, training, technology, or other results of the project can be transferred to other jurisdictions. • Reasonableness of the proposed budget. • Demonstration of cooperation and support of other agencies that may be affected by the project. 3. Technical Assistance (TA) Grant Applications. TA grant applications will be rated based on the following criteria: • Whether the assistance would address a critical need of the applicant. • Soundness of the technical assistance approach to the problem. • Qualifications of the consultant(s) to be hired or the specific criteria that will be used to select the consultant(s). • Commitment of the court or association to act on the consultant’s recommendations. • Reasonableness of the proposed budget. 4. Curriculum Adaptation and Training (CAT) Grant Applications. CAT grant applications will be rated based on the following criteria: • Goals and objectives of the proposed project. • How the training would address a critical need of the court or association. • Need for outside funding to support the program. E:\FR\FM\25OCN1.SGM 25OCN1 jspears on DSK121TN23PROD with NOTICES1 58988 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 203 / Monday, October 25, 2021 / Notices • Soundness of the approach in achieving the project’s educational or training objectives. • Integration of distance learning and technology in project design and delivery. • Qualifications of the trainer(s) to be hired or the specific criteria that will be used to select the trainer(s) (training project only). • Likelihood of effective implementation and integration of the modified curriculum into the State or local jurisdiction’s ongoing educational programming (curriculum adaptation project only). • Commitment of the court or association to the training program (training project only). • Expressions of interest by judges and/or court personnel, as demonstrated by letters of support. 5. Strategic Initiative Grant (SIG) Applications. SIG applications will be rated based on the following criteria: • Goals and objectives of the proposed project. • Demonstration of need for the project. • Degree to which the project addresses a current national court issue. • Level of innovation in addressing the identified need. • Potential impact on the court community. • Qualifications of the consultant(s) engaged to manage the project. 6. Review Process. SJI reviews the application to make sure that the information presented is reasonable, understandable, measurable, and achievable, as well as consistent with this guideline. Applications must meet basic minimum requirements. Although specific requirements may vary by grant type, the following are common requirements applicable to all SJI grant applications: • Must be submitted by an eligible type of applicant. • Must request funding within funding constraints of each grant type (if applicable). • Must be within statutorily allowable expenditures. • Must include all required forms and documents. • The SJI Board of Directors reviews all applications and makes final funding decisions. The decision to fund a project is solely that of the SJI Board of Directors. 7. Notification of SJI Board of Directors Decision. The Chairman of the Board signs grant awards on behalf of SJI. SJI will notify applicants regarding the SJI Board of Directors’ decisions to award, defer, or deny their respective applications. If requested, SJI conveys VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:00 Oct 22, 2021 Jkt 256001 the key issues and questions that arose during the review process. A decision by the SJI Board of Directors to deny an application may not be appealed, but it does not prohibit resubmission of a proposal in a subsequent funding cycle. 8. Response to Notification of Award. Grantees have 30 days from the date they were notified about their award to respond to any revisions requested by the SJI Board of Directors. If the requested revisions (or a reasonable schedule for submitting such revisions) have not been submitted to SJI within 30 days after notification, the award may be rescinded, and the application presented to the SJI Board of Directors for reconsideration. Special conditions, in the form of incentives or sanctions, may also be used in other situations. VI. How To Apply Applicants must use the SJI GMS to submit all applications and post-award documents. SJI urges applicants to submit applications at least 72 hours prior to the application due date in order to allow time for the applicant to receive an application acceptance message, and to correct in a timely fashion any problems that may arise, such as missing or incomplete forms. Files must be in .doc, .docx, .xls, .xlsx, .pdf, .jpg, or .png format. Individual file size cannot exceed 5 MB. Applicants (except for ESP) must register with the SJI GMS to submit applications for funding consideration. Below are the basic steps for submission: 1. Access the SJI GMS and complete the information required to create an account. 2. If you already have an account, log in and create a new application. 3. Complete all required forms and upload all required documents: • Application Form. • Certificate of State Approval. • Budget and Budget Narrative. • Assurances. • Disclosure of Lobbying Activities. • Project Abstract. • Program Narrative. • Attachments. D Letters of Support. D Project Timeline. D Resumes. D Indirect Cost Approval. D Other Attachments. 4. Certify and submit the application to SJI for review. VII. Post Award Reporting Requirements All required reports and documents must be submitted via the SJI GMS. Frm 00130 Fmt 4703 Recipients of SJI funds must submit Quarterly Progress and Financial Status Reports within 30 days of the close of each calendar quarter (that is, no later than January 30, April 30, July 30, and October 30). 1. Program Progress Reports. Program Progress Reports must include a narrative description of project activities during the calendar quarter; the relationship between those activities, the task schedule, and objectives set forth in the approved application or an approved adjustment thereto; any significant problem areas that have developed and how they will be resolved; and the activities scheduled during the next reporting period. Failure to comply with the requirements of this provision could result in the termination of a grantee’s award. 2. Financial Reporting. A Financial Status Report is required from all grantees for each active quarter on a calendar-quarter basis. This report is due within 30 days after the close of the calendar quarter. It is designed to provide financial information relating to SJI funds, State and local matching shares, project income, and any other sources of funds for the project, as well as information on obligations and outlays. B. Request for Reimbursement of Funds A. Submission Steps PO 00000 A. Quarterly Reporting Requirements Sfmt 4703 Awardees will receive funds on a reimbursable, U.S. Treasury checkissued or electronic funds transfer (EFT) basis. Upon receipt, review, and approval of a Request for Reimbursement by SJI, payment will be issued directly to the grantee or its designated fiscal agent. Requests for reimbursements, along with the instructions for its preparation, and the SF 3881 Automated Clearing House (ACH/Miscellaneous Payment Enrollment Form for EFT) are available in the SJI GMS. 1. Accounting System. Awardees are responsible for establishing and maintaining an adequate system of accounting and internal controls and for ensuring that an adequate system exists for each of its sub-grantees and contractors. An acceptable and adequate accounting system: • Properly accounts for receipt of funds under each grant awarded and the expenditure of funds for each grant by category of expenditure (including matching contributions and project income). • Assures that expended funds are applied to the appropriate budget category included within the approved grant. E:\FR\FM\25OCN1.SGM 25OCN1 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 203 / Monday, October 25, 2021 / Notices • Presents and classifies historical costs of the grant as required for budgetary and evaluation purposes. • Provides cost and property controls to assure optimal use of grant funds. • Is integrated with a system of internal controls adequate to safeguard the funds and assets covered, check the accuracy and reliability of the accounting data, promote operational efficiency, and assure conformance with any general or special conditions of the grant. • Meets the prescribed requirements for periodic financial reporting of operations. • Provides financial data for planning, control, measurement, and evaluation of direct and indirect costs. C. Final Progress Report The Final Progress Report should describe the project activities during the final calendar quarter of the project and the close-out period, including to whom project products have been disseminated; provide a summary of activities during the entire project; specify whether all the objectives set forth in the approved application or an approved adjustment have been met and, if any of the objectives have not been met, explain why not; and discuss what, if anything, could have been done differently that might have enhanced the impact of the project or improved its operation. In addition, grantees are required to submit electronic copies of the final products related to the project (e.g., reports, curriculum, etc.). These reporting requirements apply at the conclusion of every grant. VIII. Compliance Requirements A. Advocacy No funds made available by SJI may be used to support or conduct training programs for the purpose of advocating particular nonjudicial public policies or encouraging nonjudicial political activities (42 U.S.C. 10706(b)). jspears on DSK121TN23PROD with NOTICES1 B. Approval of Key Staff If the qualifications of an employee or consultant assigned to a key project staff position are not adequately described in the application or if there is a change of a person assigned to such a position, the recipient must submit a description of the qualifications of the newly assigned person to SJI. Prior written approval of the qualifications of the new person assigned to a key staff position must be received from SJI before the salary or consulting fee of that person and associated costs may be paid or reimbursed from grant funds. VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:00 Oct 22, 2021 Jkt 256001 C. Audit Recipients of SJI grants must provide for an annual fiscal audit, which includes an opinion on whether the financial statements of the grantee present fairly its financial position and its financial operations in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles. If requested, a copy of the audit report must be made available electronically to SJI. D. Budget Revisions Budget revisions among direct cost categories that: (1) Transfer grant funds to an unbudgeted cost category, or (2) individually or cumulatively exceed 5 percent of the approved original budget or the most recently approved revised budget require prior SJI approval. Refer to section X, Grant Adjustments, of this guideline for additional details about the process to modify the project budget. E. Conflict of Interest Personnel and other officials connected with SJI-funded programs must adhere to the following requirements: • Officials or employees of a recipient court or organization must not participate personally through decision, approval, disapproval, recommendation, the rendering of advice, investigation, or otherwise, in any proceeding, application, request for a ruling or other determination, contract, grant, cooperative agreement, claim, controversy, or other particular matter in which SJI funds are used, where, to their knowledge, they or their immediate family, partners, organization other than a public agency in which they are serving as officer, director, trustee, partner, or employee or any person or organization with whom they are negotiating or have any arrangement concerning prospective employment, have a financial interest. • In the use of SJI project funds, an official or employee of a recipient court or organization must avoid any action which might result in or create the appearance of: D Using an official position for private gain; or D Affecting adversely the confidence of the public in the integrity of the SJI program. • Requests for proposals or invitations for bids issued by a recipient of SJI funds or a sub-grantee or subcontractor will provide notice to prospective bidders that the contractors who develop or draft specifications, requirements, statements of work, and/ or requests for proposals for a proposed PO 00000 Frm 00131 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 58989 procurement will be excluded from bidding on or submitting a proposal to compete for the award of such procurement. F. Inventions and Patents If any patentable items, patent rights, processes, or inventions are produced during the course of SJI-sponsored work, such fact must be promptly and fully reported to SJI. Unless there is a prior agreement between the grantee and SJI on the disposition of such items, SJI will determine whether protection of the invention or discovery must be sought. G. Lobbying Funds awarded to recipients by SJI must not be used, indirectly or directly, to influence Executive orders or similar promulgations by Federal, State, or local agencies; or to influence the passage or defeat of any legislation by Federal, State, or local legislative bodies (42 U.S.C. 10706(a)). It is the policy of the SJI Board of Directors to award funds only to support applications submitted by organizations that would carry out the objectives of their applications in an unbiased manner. Consistent with this policy and the provisions of 42 U.S.C. 10706, SJI will not knowingly award a grant to an applicant that has, directly or through an entity that is part of the same organization as the applicant, advocated a position before Congress on the specific subject matter of the application. H. Matching Requirements All grant recipients are required to provide a match. A match is the portion of project costs not borne by SJI. A match includes both cash and in-kind contributions. Cash match is the direct outlay of funds by the grantee or a third party to support the project. In-kind match for State and local courts or other units of government consists of contributions of time and/or services of current staff members, new employees, space, supplies, etc., made to the project by the grantee or others (e.g., advisory board members) working directly on the project. Generally, these same items are considered cash matches for nongovernmental entities. For nongovernmental entities, federally approved indirect cost rate may be used as an in-kind match for that portion of the rate that exceeds the limit of permitted charges for indirect costs (75 percent of salaries and benefits). Under normal circumstances, allowable match may be incurred only during the project period. The amount and nature of required match depends E:\FR\FM\25OCN1.SGM 25OCN1 58990 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 203 / Monday, October 25, 2021 / Notices on the type of grant. Refer to section V.C.12, Matching Requirements, of this guideline for details by grant type. The grantee is responsible for ensuring that the total amount of match proposed is contributed. If a proposed contribution is not fully met, SJI may reduce the award amount accordingly, to maintain the ratio originally provided for in the award agreement. Match should be expended at the same rate as SJI funding. The SJI Board of Directors looks favorably upon any unrequired match contributed by applicants when making grant decisions. The match requirement may be waived in exceptionally rare circumstances upon the request of the chief justice of the highest court in the State, or the highest ranking official in the requesting organization and approval by the SJI Board of Directors (42 U.S.C. 10705(d)). The SJI Board of Directors encourages all applicants to provide the maximum amount of cash and in-kind match possible, even if a waiver is approved. The amount and nature of the match are criteria in the grant selection process. Other Federal department and agency funding may not be used for cash match. I. Nondiscrimination No person may, on the basis of race, sex, national origin, disability, color, or creed, be excluded from participation in, denied the benefits of, or otherwise subjected to discrimination under any program or activity supported by SJI funds. Recipients of SJI funds must take any measures necessary immediately to effectuate this provision. jspears on DSK121TN23PROD with NOTICES1 J. Political Activities No recipient may contribute or make available SJI funds, program personnel, or equipment to any political party or association or the campaign of any candidate for public or party office. Recipients are also prohibited from using funds in advocating or opposing any ballot measure, initiative, or referendum. Officers and employees of recipients must not intentionally identify SJI or recipients with any partisan or nonpartisan political activity associated with a political party or association or the campaign of any candidate for public or party office (42 U.S.C. 10706(a)). K. Products 1. Acknowledgment, Logo, and Disclaimer. Recipients of SJI funds must acknowledge prominently on all products developed with grant funds that support was received from the SJI. The SJI logo must appear on the front cover of a written product, or in the VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:00 Oct 22, 2021 Jkt 256001 opening frames of a multimedia product, unless another placement is approved in writing by SJI. This includes final products printed or otherwise reproduced during the grant period, as well as reprintings or reproductions of those materials following the end of the grant period. A camera-ready logo sheet is available on SJI’s website: https://www.sji.gov/forms/. Recipients also must display the following disclaimer on all grant products: ‘‘This [document, film, videotape, etc.] was developed under [grant/cooperative agreement] number SJI-[insert number] from the State Justice Institute. The points of view expressed are those of the [author(s), filmmaker(s), etc.] and do not necessarily represent the official position or policies of the State Justice Institute.’’ a. Project Grants. In addition to other required grant products and reports, recipients must provide a one-page executive summary of the project. The summary should include a background on the project, the tasks undertaken, and the outcome. In addition, the summary should provide the performance metrics that were used during the project, and how performance will be measured in the future. b. TA Grants. Grantees must submit a final report that explains how it intends to act on the consultant’s recommendations, as well as a copy of the consultant’s written report. Both should be submitted in electronic format. c. CAT Grants. Grantees must submit an electronic version of the agenda or schedule, outline of presentations and/ or relevant instructor’s notes; copies of overhead transparencies, Microsoft PowerPoint presentations, or other visual aids; exercises, case studies, and other background materials; hypotheticals, quizzes, and other materials involving the participants; manuals, handbooks, conference packets, and evaluation forms; and suggestions for replicating the program, including possible faculty or the preferred qualifications or experience of those selected as faculty, developed under the grant after the grant period, along with a final report that includes any evaluation results and explains how the grantee intends to present the educational program in the future, as well as the consultant’s or trainer’s report. All items should be submitted in electronic format. 2. Charges for Grant-Related Products/Recovery of Costs. SJI’s mission is to support improvements in the quality of justice and foster innovative, efficient solutions to PO 00000 Frm 00132 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 common issues faced by all courts. SJI has recognized and established procedures for supporting research and development of grant products (e.g., a report, curriculum, video, software, database, or website) through competitive grant awards based on the merit reviews of proposed projects. To ensure that all grants benefit the entire court community, projects SJI considers worthy of support (in whole or in part) are required to be disseminated widely and available for public consumption. This includes open-source software and interfaces. Costs for development, production, and dissemination are allowable as direct costs to SJI. Applicants should disclose their intent to sell grant-related products in the application. Grantees must obtain SJI’s prior written approval of their plans to recover project costs through the sale of grant products. Written requests to recover costs ordinarily should be received during the grant period and should specify the nature and extent of the costs to be recouped, the reason that such costs were not budgeted (if the rationale was not disclosed in the approved application), the number of copies to be sold, the intended audience for the products to be sold, and the proposed sale price. If the product is to be sold for more than $25, the written request should also include a detailed itemization of costs that will be recovered and a certification that the costs were not supported by either SJI grant funds or grantee matching contributions. In the event that the sale of grant products results in revenues that exceed the costs to develop, produce, and disseminate the product, the revenue must continue to be used for the authorized purposes of SJI-funded project or other purposes consistent with the State Justice Institute Act that have been approved by SJI. L. Copyrights Except as otherwise provided in the terms and conditions of a SJI award, a recipient is free to copyright any books, publications, or other copyrightable materials developed in the course of an SJI-supported project, SJI must reserve a royalty-free, nonexclusive, and irrevocable right to reproduce, publish, or otherwise use, and to authorize others to use, the materials for purposes consistent with the State Justice Institute Act. M. Due Date All products and, for TA and CAT grants, consultant and/or trainer reports are to be completed and distributed not later than the end of the award period, E:\FR\FM\25OCN1.SGM 25OCN1 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 203 / Monday, October 25, 2021 / Notices not the 90-day closeout period. The 90day closeout period is intended only for grantee final reporting and to liquidate obligations. N. Distribution In addition to the distribution specified in the grant application, grantees must send an electronic version of all products in HTML or PDF format to SJI. O. Original Material All products prepared as the result of SJI-supported projects must be originally developed material unless otherwise specified in the award documents. Material not originally developed that is included in such products must be properly identified, whether the material is in a verbatim or extensive paraphrase format. P. Prohibition Against Litigation Support No funds made available by SJI may be used directly or indirectly to support legal assistance to parties in litigation, including cases involving capital punishment. jspears on DSK121TN23PROD with NOTICES1 Q. Reporting Requirements All reports must be submitted via the SJI GMS as detailed below: 1. Quarterly Progress and Financial Status Reports. Recipients of SJI funds must submit Quarterly Progress and Financial Status Reports within 30 days of the close of each calendar quarter (that is, no later than January 30, April 30, July 30, and October 30). The Quarterly Progress Reports must include a narrative description of project activities during the calendar quarter; the relationship between those activities, the task schedule, and objectives set forth in the approved application or an approved adjustment thereto; any significant problem areas that have developed and how they will be resolved; and the activities scheduled during the next reporting period. Failure to comply with the requirements of this provision could result in the termination of a grantee’s award. 2. Quarterly Financial Reporting. The quarterly financial report must be submitted in accordance with section VII.A.2, Financial Reporting, of this guideline. A final project Progress Report and Financial Status Report must be submitted within 90 days after the end of the grant period. R. Research 1. Availability of Research Data for Secondary Analysis. Upon request, grantees must make available for secondary analysis backup files VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:00 Oct 22, 2021 Jkt 256001 containing research and evaluation data collected under a SJI grant and the accompanying code manual. Grantees may recover the actual cost of duplicating and mailing, or otherwise transmitting, the data set and manual from the person or organization requesting the data. Grantees may provide the requested data set in the format in which it was created and analyzed. 2. Confidentiality of Information. Except as provided by Federal law other than the State Justice Institute Act, no recipient of financial assistance from SJI may use or reveal any research or statistical information furnished under the Act by any person and identifiable to any specific private person for any purpose other than the purpose for which the information was obtained. Such information and copies thereof will be immune from legal process and must not, without the consent of the person furnishing such information, be admitted as evidence or used for any purpose in any action, suit, or other judicial, legislative, or administrative proceedings. 3. Human Subject Protection. Human subjects are defined as individuals who are participants in an experimental procedure or who are asked to provide information about themselves, their attitudes, feelings, opinions, and/or experiences through an interview, questionnaire, or other data collection technique. All research involving human subjects must be conducted with the informed consent of those subjects and in a manner that will ensure their privacy and freedom from risk or harm and the protection of persons who are not subjects of the research but would be affected by it—unless such procedures and safeguards would make the research impractical. In such instances, SJI must approve procedures designed by the grantee to provide human subjects with relevant information about the research after their involvement and minimize or eliminate risk or harm to those subjects due to their participation. 4. Prohibited Uses of SJI Funds. To ensure that SJI funds are used to supplement and improve the operation of State courts, rather than to support basic court services, SJI funds must not be used for the following purposes: • To supplant State or local funds supporting a program or activity (such as paying the salary of court employees who would be performing their normal duties as part of the project or paying rent for space which is part of the court’s normal operations). • To construct court facilities or structures. PO 00000 Frm 00133 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 58991 • Solely to purchase equipment. Examples of basic court services include: • Hiring of personnel • Purchase and/or maintenance of equipment • Purchase of software and/or licenses • Purchase of internet access or service • Supplies to support the day-to-day operations of courts The final determination of what constitutes basic court services is made by SJI and is not negotiable. Meals and refreshments are generally not allowable costs unless the applicant or grantee obtains prior written approval from SJI. This applies to all awards, including contracts, grants, and cooperative agreements. In general, SJI may approve such costs only in very rare instances where: • Sustenance is not otherwise available (e.g., extremely remote areas); • The size of the event and nearby food and/or beverage vendors would make it impractical to not provide meals and/or refreshments; and/or • A special presentation at a conference requires a plenary address where there is no other time for sustenance to be obtained. Trinkets (items such as hats, mugs, portfolios, t-shirts, coins, gift bags, gift cards, etc.) may not be purchased with SJI grant funding. 5. Suspension or Termination of Funding. After providing a recipient reasonable notice and opportunity to submit written documentation demonstrating why fund termination or suspension should not occur, SJI may terminate or suspend funding of a project that fails to comply substantially with the Act, the Grant Guideline, or the terms and conditions of the award (42 U.S.C. 10708(a)). 7. Title to Property. At the conclusion of the project, title to all expendable and nonexpendable personal property purchased with SJI funds must vest in the recipient court, organization, or individual that purchased the property if certification is made to and approved by SJI that the property will continue to be used for the authorized purposes of the SJI-funded project or other purposes consistent with the State Justice Institute Act. If such certification is not made or SJI disapproves of such certification, title to all such property with an aggregate or individual value of $1,000 or more must vest in SJI, which will direct the disposition of the property. IX. Financial Requirements The purpose of this section is to establish accounting system E:\FR\FM\25OCN1.SGM 25OCN1 58992 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 203 / Monday, October 25, 2021 / Notices jspears on DSK121TN23PROD with NOTICES1 requirements and offer guidance on procedures to assist all grantees, subgrantees, contractors, and other organizations in: • Complying with the statutory requirements for the award, disbursement, and accounting of funds. • Complying with regulatory requirements of SJI for the financial management and disposition of funds. • Generating financial data to be used in planning, managing, and controlling projects. • Facilitating an effective audit of funded programs and projects. A. Supervision and Monitoring Responsibilities All grantees receiving awards from SJI are responsible for the management and fiscal control of all funds. Responsibilities include accounting for receipts and expenditures, maintaining adequate financial records, and refunding expenditures disallowed by audits. If the project includes subawards, the grantees responsibilities also include: 1. Reviewing Financial Operations. The grantee or its designee should be familiar with, and periodically monitor, its sub-grantee’s financial operations, records system, and procedures. Particular attention should be directed to the maintenance of current financial data. 2. Recording Financial Activities. The sub-grantee’s grant award or contract obligation, as well as cash advances and other financial activities, should be recorded in the financial records of the grantee or its designee in summary form. Sub-grantee expenditures should be recorded on the books of the State supreme court or evidenced by report forms duly filed by the sub-grantee. Matching contributions provided by sub-grantees should likewise be recorded, as should any project income resulting from program operations. 3. Budgeting and Budget Review. The grantee or its designee should ensure that each sub-grantee prepares an adequate budget as the basis for its award commitment. The State supreme court should maintain the details of each project budget on file. 4. Accounting for Match. The grantee or its designee will ensure that subgrantees comply with the match requirements specified in this guideline. 5. Audit Requirement. The grantee or its designee is required to ensure that sub-grantees meet the necessary audit requirements set forth by SJI. 6. Reporting Irregularities. The grantee, its designees, and its subgrantees are responsible for promptly reporting to SJI the nature and VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:00 Oct 22, 2021 Jkt 256001 circumstances surrounding any financial irregularities discovered. B. Accounting System The grantee is responsible for establishing and maintaining an adequate system of accounting and internal controls, and for ensuring that an adequate system exists for each of its sub-grantees and contractors. An acceptable and adequate accounting system: • Properly accounts for receipt of funds under each grant awarded and the expenditure of funds for each grant by category of expenditure, including matching contributions and project income. • Assures that expended funds are applied to the appropriate budget category included within the approved grant. • Presents and classifies historical costs of the grant as required for budgetary and evaluation purposes. • Provides cost and property controls to assure optimal use of grant funds. • Is integrated with a system of internal controls adequate to safeguard the funds and assets covered, check the accuracy and reliability of the accounting data, promote operational efficiency, and assure conformance with any general or special conditions of the grant. • Meets the prescribed requirements for periodic financial reporting of operations. • Provides financial data for planning, control, measurement, and evaluation of direct and indirect costs. C. Total Cost Budgeting and Accounting Accounting for all funds awarded by SJI must be structured and executed on a total-project-cost basis. That is, total project costs, including SJI funds, State and local matching shares, and any other fund sources included in the approved project budget, serve as the foundation for fiscal administration and accounting. Grant applications and financial reports require budget and cost estimates based on total costs. 1. Timing of Matching Contributions. Matching contributions should be applied at the same time as the obligation of SJI funds. Ordinarily, the full matching share must be obligated during the award period; however, with the written permission of SJI, contributions made following approval of the grant by the SJI Board of Directors but before the beginning of the grant may be counted as match. If a proposed cash or in-kind match is not fully met, SJI may reduce the award amount accordingly to maintain the ratio of PO 00000 Frm 00134 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 grant funds to matching funds stated in the award agreement. 2. Records for Match. All grantees must maintain records that clearly show the source, amount, and timing of all matching contributions. In addition, if a project has included, within its approved budget, contributions that exceed the required matching portion, the grantee must maintain records of those contributions in the same manner as it does SJI funds and required matching shares. For all grants made to State and local courts, the State supreme court has primary responsibility for grantee/sub-grantee compliance with the requirements of this section. 3. Maintenance and Retention of Records. All financial records, including supporting documents, statistical records, and all other information pertinent to grants, sub-grants, cooperative agreements, or contracts under grants, must be retained by each organization participating in a project for at least 3 years for purposes of examination and audit. State supreme courts may impose record retention and maintenance requirements in addition to those prescribed in this section. 4. Coverage. The retention requirement extends to books of original entry, source documents supporting accounting transactions, the general ledger, subsidiary ledgers, personnel and payroll records, canceled checks, and related documents and records. Source documents include copies of all grant and sub-grant awards, applications, and required grantee/subgrantee financial and narrative reports. Personnel and payroll records must include the time and attendance reports for all individuals reimbursed under a grant, sub-grant, or contract, whether they are employed full-time or parttime. Time and effort reports are required for consultants. 5. Retention Period. The 3-year retention period starts from the date of the submission of the final expenditure report. 6. Maintenance. Grantees and subgrantees are expected to see that records of different fiscal years are separately identified and maintained so that requested information can be readily located. Grantees and sub-grantees are also obligated to protect records adequately against fire or other damage. When records are stored away from the grantee’s or sub-grantee’s principal office, a written index of the location of stored records should be on hand, and ready access should be assured. 7. Access. Grantees and sub-grantees must give any authorized representative of SJI access to and the right to examine E:\FR\FM\25OCN1.SGM 25OCN1 jspears on DSK121TN23PROD with NOTICES1 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 203 / Monday, October 25, 2021 / Notices all records, books, papers, and documents related to a SJI grant. 8. Project-Related Income. Records of the receipt and disposition of projectrelated income must be maintained by the grantee in the same manner as required for the project funds that gave rise to the income and must be reported to SJI (see section VII.A.2, Financial Reporting, of this guideline). The policies governing the disposition of the various types of project-related income are listed below. a. Interest. A State and any agency or instrumentality of a State, including institutions of higher education and hospitals, will not be held accountable for interest earned on advances of project funds. When funds are awarded to sub-grantees through a State, the subgrantees are not held accountable for interest earned on advances of project funds. Local units of government and nonprofit organizations that are grantees must refund any interest earned. Grantees must ensure minimum balances in their respective grant cash accounts. b. Royalties. The grantee or subgrantee may retain all royalties received from copyrights or other works developed under projects or from patents and inventions unless the terms and conditions of the grant provide otherwise. c. Registration and Tuition Fees. Registration and tuition fees may be considered as cash match with prior written approval from SJI. Estimates of registration and tuition fees, and any expenses to be offset by the fees, should be included in the application budget forms and narrative. d. Income from the Sale of Grant Products. If the sale of products occurs during the project period, the income may be treated as cash match with the prior written approval of SJI. The costs and income generated by the sales must be reported on the Quarterly Progress Financial Status Reports and documented in an auditable manner. Whenever possible, the intent to sell a product should be disclosed in the application or reported to SJI in writing once a decision to sell products has been made. The grantee must request approval to recover its product development, reproduction, and dissemination costs (see section VIII.K.2, Charges for Grant-Related Products/Recovery of Costs, of this guideline). e. Other. Other project income will be treated in accordance with disposition instructions set forth in the grant’s terms and conditions. VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:00 Oct 22, 2021 Jkt 256001 D. Payments and Financial Reporting Requirements The procedures and regulations set forth below are applicable to all SJI grant funds and grantees. 1. Request for Reimbursement of Funds. Grantees will receive funds on a reimbursable, U.S. Department of the Treasury check-issued or EFT basis. Upon receipt, review, and approval of a Request for Reimbursement (Form R) by SJI, payment will be issued directly to the grantee or its designated fiscal agent. The Form R, along with the instructions for its preparation, and the SF 3881 Automated Clearing House (ACH/ Miscellaneous Payment Enrollment Form for EFT), are available for download and submission in the SJI GMS. 2. Financial Reporting. a. General Requirements. To obtain financial information concerning the use of funds, SJI requires that grantees/ sub-grantees submit timely reports for review. b. Due Dates and Contents. A Financial Status Report is required from all grantees for each active quarter on a calendar-quarter basis. This report is due within 30 days after the close of the calendar quarter. It is designed to provide financial information relating to SJI funds, State and local matching shares, project income, and any other sources of funds for the project, as well as information on obligations and outlays. The Financial Status Report (Form F), along with instructions, is accessible in the SJI GMS. If a grantee requests substantial payment for a project prior to the completion of a given quarter, SJI may request a brief summary of the amount requested, by object class, to support the Request for Reimbursement. a. Consequences of Noncompliance with Submission Requirement. Failure of the grantee to submit required financial and progress reports may result in suspension or termination of grant reimbursement. E. Allowability of Costs 1. Costs Requiring Prior Approval a. Pre-agreement Costs. The written prior approval of SJI is required for costs considered necessary but which occur prior to the start date of the project period. b. Equipment. Grant funds may be used to purchase or lease only that equipment essential to accomplishing the goals and objectives of the project. The written prior approval of SJI is required when: (1) The amount of automated data processing equipment to be purchased or leased exceeds $10,000 PO 00000 Frm 00135 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 58993 or (2) the software to be purchased exceeds $3,000. c. Consultants. The written prior approval of SJI is required when the rate of compensation to be paid to a consultant exceeds $800 a day. SJI funds may not be used to pay a consultant more than $1,100 per day. d. Budget Revisions. Budget revisions among direct-cost categories that: (1) Transfer grant funds to an unbudgeted cost category or (2) individually or cumulatively exceed 5 percent of the approved original budget or the most recently approved revised budget require prior SJI approval. 2. Travel Costs. Transportation and per diem rates must comply with the policies of the grantee. If the grantee does not have an established written travel policy, then travel rates must be consistent with those established by the U.S. General Services Administration. Grant funds may not be used to cover the transportation or per diem costs of a member of a national organization to attend an annual or other regular meeting, or conference of that organization. 3. Indirect Costs. Indirect costs are only applicable to organizations that are not State courts or government agencies. These are costs of an organization that are not readily assignable to a particular project but are necessary to the operation of the organization and the performance of the project. The cost of operating and maintaining facilities, depreciation, and administrative salaries are examples of the types of costs that are usually treated as indirect costs. Although SJI’s policy requires all costs to be budgeted directly, it will accept indirect costs if a grantee has an indirect cost rate approved by a Federal agency. However, recoverable indirect costs are limited to no more than 75 percent of a grantee’s direct personnel costs (salaries plus fringe benefits). a. Approved Plan Available. • A copy of an indirect cost rate agreement or allocation plan approved for a grantee during the preceding 2 years by any Federal granting agency on the basis of allocation methods substantially in accord with those set forth in the applicable cost circulars must be submitted to SJI. • Where flat rates are accepted in lieu of actual, indirect costs, grantees may not also charge expenses normally included in overhead pools (e.g., accounting services, legal services, building occupancy and maintenance, etc.) as direct costs. F. Audit Requirements 1. Implementation. Grantees must provide for an annual fiscal audit. This E:\FR\FM\25OCN1.SGM 25OCN1 58994 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 203 / Monday, October 25, 2021 / Notices jspears on DSK121TN23PROD with NOTICES1 requirement also applies to a State or local court receiving a sub-grant from the State supreme court. Audits conducted using generally accepted auditing standards in the United States will satisfy the requirement for an annual fiscal audit. The audit must be conducted by an independent Certified Public Accountant, or a State or local agency authorized to audit government agencies. The audit report must be made available to SJI electronically, if requested. 2. Resolution and Clearance of Audit Reports. Timely action on recommendations by responsible management officials is an integral part of the effectiveness of an audit. Each grantee must have policies and procedures for acting on audit recommendations by designating officials responsible for: • Follow-up. • Maintaining a record of the actions taken on recommendations and time schedules. • Responding to and acting on audit recommendations. • Submitting periodic reports to SJI on recommendations and actions taken. 3. Consequences of Non-Resolution of Audit Issues. Ordinarily, SJI will not make a subsequent grant award to an applicant that has an unresolved audit report involving SJI awards. Failure of the grantee to resolve audit questions may also result in the suspension or termination of payments for active SJI grants to that organization. G. Closeout of Grants 1. Grantee Closeout Requirements. Within 90 days after the end date of the grant or any approved extension thereof, the following documents must be submitted to SJI by grantees: a. Financial Status Report. The final report of expenditures must have no unliquidated obligations and must indicate the exact balance of unobligated funds. Any unobligated or unexpended funds will be de-obligated from the award by SJI. Final payment requests for obligations incurred during the award period must be submitted to SJI prior to the end of the 90-day closeout period. b. Final Progress Report. This report should describe the project activities during the final calendar quarter of the project and the closeout period, including to whom project products have been disseminated; provide a summary of activities during the entire project; specify whether all the objectives set forth in the approved application or an approved adjustment have been met and, if any of the objectives have not been met, explain VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:00 Oct 22, 2021 Jkt 256001 why not; and discuss what, if anything, could have been done differently that might have enhanced the impact of the project or improved its operation. These reporting requirements apply at the conclusion of every grant. 2. Extension of Closeout Period. Upon the written request of the grantee, SJI may extend the closeout period to assure completion of the grantee’s closeout requirements. Requests for an extension must be submitted at least 14 days before the end of the closeout period and must explain why the extension is necessary, and what steps will be taken to assure that all the grantee’s responsibilities will be met by the end of the extension period. Extensions must be submitted via the SJI GMS as Grant Adjustments. X. Grant Adjustments All requests for programmatic or budgetary adjustments requiring SJI approval must be submitted by the project director in a timely manner (ordinarily 30 days prior to the implementation of the adjustment being requested). All requests for changes from the approved application will be carefully reviewed for both consistency with this guideline and the enhancement of grant goals and objectives. Failure to submit adjustments in a timely manner may result in the termination of a grantee’s award. A. Grant Adjustments Requiring Prior Written Approval The following Grant Adjustments require the prior written approval of SJI: • Budget revisions among direct cost categories that (1) transfer grant funds to an unbudgeted cost category or (2) individually or cumulatively exceed 5 percent of the approved original budget or the most recently approved revised budget. • A change in the scope of work to be performed or the objectives of the project. • A change in the project site. • A change in the project period, such as an extension of the grant period or extension of the final financial or progress report deadline. • Satisfaction of special conditions, if required. • A change in or temporary absence of the project director. • The assignment of an employee or consultant to a key staff position whose qualifications were not described in the application, or a change of a person assigned to a key project staff position. • A change in or temporary absence of the person responsible for managing and reporting on the grant’s finances. PO 00000 Frm 00136 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 • A change in the name of the grantee organization. • A transfer or contracting out of grant-supported activities. • A transfer of the grant to another recipient. • Pre-agreement costs. • The purchase of ADA equipment and software. • Consultant rates. • A change in the nature or number of the products to be prepared or the way a product would be distributed. B. Requests for Grant Adjustments All grantees must promptly notify SJI, in writing, of events or proposed changes that may require adjustments to the approved project design. In requesting an adjustment, the grantee must set forth the reasons and basis for the proposed adjustment and any other information the program manager determines would help SJI’s review. All requests for Grant Adjustments must be submitted via the SJI GMS. C. Notification of Approval or Disapproval If the request is approved, the grantee will be sent a Grant Adjustment signed by the SJI Executive Director. If the request is denied, the grantee will be sent a written explanation of the reasons for the denial. D. Changes in the Scope of the Grant Major changes in scope, duration, training methodology, or other significant areas must be approved in advance by SJI. A grantee may make minor changes in methodology, approach, or other aspects of the grant to expedite achievement of the grant’s objectives with subsequent notification to SJI. E. Date Changes A request to change or extend the grant period must be made at least 30 days in advance of the end date of the grant. A revised task plan should accompany a request for an extension of the grant period, along with a revised budget if shifts among budget categories will be needed. A request to change or extend the deadline for the final financial report or final progress report must be made at least 14 days in advance of the report deadline. F. Temporary Absence of the Project Director Whenever an absence of the project director is expected to exceed a continuous period of 1 month, the plans for the conduct of the project director’s duties during such absence must be approved in advance by SJI. This E:\FR\FM\25OCN1.SGM 25OCN1 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 203 / Monday, October 25, 2021 / Notices information must be provided in a letter signed by an authorized representative of the grantee or sub-grantee at least 30 days before the departure of the project director or as soon as it is known that the project director will be absent. The grant may be terminated if arrangements are not approved in advance by SJI. G. Withdrawal of or Change in Project Director If the project director relinquishes or expects to relinquish active direction of the project, SJI must be notified immediately. In such cases, if the grantee or sub-grantee wishes to terminate the project, SJI will forward procedural instructions upon notification of such intent. If the grantee wishes to continue the project under the direction of another individual, a statement of the candidate’s qualifications should be sent to SJI for review and approval. The grant may be terminated if the qualifications of the proposed individual are not approved in advance by SJI. H. Transferring or Contracting Out of Grant-Supported Activities jspears on DSK121TN23PROD with NOTICES1 State Justice Institute Board of Directors Hon. John Minton (Chair), Chief Justice, Supreme Court of Kentucky, Frankfort, KY Daniel Becker (Vice Chair), State Court Administrator (ret.), Utah Administrative Office of the Courts, Salt Lake City, UT Hon. Gayle A. Nachtigal (Secretary), Circuit Court Judge (ret.), Washington County Circuit Court, Hillsboro, OR Hon. David Brewer (Treasurer), Justice (ret.), Supreme Court of Oregon, Salem, OR 18:00 Oct 22, 2021 Jkt 256001 Jonathan D. Mattiello, Executive Director. [FR Doc. 2021–23227 Filed 10–22–21; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6820–SC–P SURFACE TRANSPORTATION BOARD [Docket No. AB 646 (Sub-No. 1X)] No principal activity of a grantsupported project may be transferred or contracted out to another organization without specific prior approval by SJI. All such arrangements must be formalized in a contract or other written agreement between the parties involved. Copies of the proposed contract or agreement must be submitted for prior approval to SJI at the earliest possible time. The contract or agreement must state, at a minimum, the activities to be performed, the time schedule, the policies and procedures to be followed, the dollar limitation of the agreement, and the cost principles to be followed in determining what costs, both direct and indirect, will be allowed. The contract or other written agreement must not affect the grantee’s overall responsibility for the direction of the project and accountability to SJI. VerDate Sep<11>2014 Hon. Jonathan Lippman, Chief Judge of the State of New York (ret.); Of Counsel, Latham & Watkins, LLP, New York, NY Hon. Chase Rogers, Chief Justice (ret.), Supreme Court of Connecticut; Partner, Day Pitney, LLP, Hartford, CT Hon. Wilfredo Martinez, Senior Judge, Ninth Judicial Circuit of Florida, Orlando, FL Hon. Hernan D. Vera, Judge, Los Angeles County Superior Court, Monterey Park, CA Marsha J. Rabiteau, President & CEO, Center for Human Trafficking Court Solutions, Bloomfield, CT Isabel Framer, President, Language Access Consultants LLC, Copley, OH Jonathan D. Mattiello, Executive Director (ex officio) Atlantic and Western Railway, Limited Partnership—Abandonment Exemption—in Lee County, NC Atlantic and Western Railway, Limited Partnership (ATW), has filed a verified notice of exemption under 49 CFR part 1152 subpart F—Exempt Abandonments to abandon a rail line between approximately milepost 2.71 and milepost 3.76 in Sanford, NC (the Line). There are no stations on the Line. The Line traverses U.S. Postal Service Zip Codes 27330 and 27332. ATW has certified that: (1) No local traffic has moved over the Line since 2016; (2) because the Line is not a through line, there is no overhead traffic on the Line that would need to be rerouted; (3) no formal complaint filed by a user of rail service on the Line (or by a state or local government entity acting on behalf of such user) regarding cessation of service over the Line either is pending with the Surface Transportation Board (Board) or with any U.S. District Court or has been decided in favor of a complainant within the two-year period; and (4) the requirements at 49 CFR 1105.7(b) and 1105.8(c) (notice of environmental and historic reports), 49 CFR 1105.12 (newspaper publication), and 49 CFR 1152.50(d)(1) (notice to governmental agencies) have been met. As a condition to this exemption, any employee adversely affected by the abandonment shall be protected under Oregon Short Line Railroad— PO 00000 Frm 00137 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 58995 Abandonment Portion Goshen Branch Between Firth & Ammon, in Bingham & Bonneville Counties, Idaho, 360 I.C.C. 91 (1979). To address whether this condition adequately protects affected employees, a petition for partial revocation under 49 U.S.C. 10502(d) must be filed. Provided no formal expression of intent to file an offer of financial assistance (OFA) has been received,1 this exemption will be effective on November 24, 2021, unless stayed pending reconsideration. Petitions to stay that do not involve environmental issues,2 formal expressions of intent to file an OFA under 49 CFR 1152.27(c)(2), and interim trail use/rail banking requests under 49 CFR 1152.29 must be filed by November 4, 2021.3 Petitions to reopen or requests for public use conditions under 49 CFR 1152.28 must be filed by November 15, 2021. All pleadings, referring to Docket No. AB 646 (Sub-No. 1X), should be filed with the Surface Transportation Board via e-filing on the Board’s website. In addition, a copy of each pleading must be served on ATW’s representative, Eric M. Hocky, Clark Hill PLC, Two Commerce Square, 2001 Market Street, Suite 2620, Philadelphia, PA 19103. If the verified notice contains false or misleading information, the exemption is void ab initio. ATW has filed a combined environmental and historic report that addresses the potential effects, if any, of the abandonment on the environment and historic resources. OEA will issue a Draft Environmental Assessment (Draft EA) by October 29, 2021. The Draft EA will be available to interested persons on the Board’s website, by writing to OEA, or by calling OEA at (202) 245– 0294. Assistance for the hearing impaired is available through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877–8339. Comments on environmental and historic preservation matters must be filed within 15 days after the Draft EA becomes available to the public. 1 Persons interested in submitting an OFA must first file a formal expression of intent to file an offer, indicating the type of financial assistance they wish to provide (i.e., subsidy or purchase) and demonstrating that they are preliminarily financially responsible. See 49 CFR 1152.27(c)(2)(i). 2 The Board will grant a stay if an informed decision on environmental issues (whether raised by a party or by the Board’s Office of Environmental Analysis (OEA) in its independent investigation) cannot be made before the exemption’s effective date. See Exemption of Out-of-Serv. Rail Lines, 5 I.C.C.2d 377 (1989). Any request for a stay should be filed as soon as possible so that the Board may take appropriate action before the exemption’s effective date. 3 Filing fees for OFAs and trail use requests can be found at 49 CFR 1002.2(f)(25) and (27), respectively. E:\FR\FM\25OCN1.SGM 25OCN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 86, Number 203 (Monday, October 25, 2021)]
[Notices]
[Pages 58980-58995]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2021-23227]


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

STATE JUSTICE INSTITUTE


Grant Guideline; Notice

AGENCY: State Justice Institute.

ACTION: Grant Guideline for FY 2022.

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

SUMMARY: This guideline sets forth the administrative, programmatic, 
and financial requirements attendant to Fiscal Year 2022 State Justice 
Institute grants.

DATES: October 25, 2021.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Jonathan Mattiello, Executive 
Director, State Justice Institute, 12700 Fair Lakes Circle, Suite 340, 
Fairfax, VA 22033, 703-660-4979, [email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Pursuant to the State Justice Institute Act 
of 1984 (42 U.S.C. 10701 et seq.), the State Justice Institute is 
authorized to award grants, cooperative agreements, and contracts to 
State and local courts, nonprofit organizations, and others for the 
purpose of improving the quality of justice in the state courts of the 
United States.
    The following Grant Guideline is adopted by the State Justice 
Institute for FY 2022.

Table of Contents

I. Eligibility
II. Grant Application Deadlines
III. The Mission of the State Justice Institute
IV. Grant Types
V. Application and Submission Information
VI. How To Apply
VII. Post Award Reporting Requirements
VIII. Compliance Requirements
IX. Financial Requirements
X. Grant Adjustments

I. Eligibility

    Pursuant to the State Justice Institute Act of 1984 (42 U.S.C. 
10701 et seq.), the State Justice Institute (SJI) is authorized to 
award grants, cooperative agreements, and contracts to State and local 
courts, national nonprofit organizations, and others for the purpose of 
improving the quality of justice in the State courts of the United 
States.
    SJI is authorized by Congress to award grants, cooperative 
agreements, and contracts to the following entities and types of 
organizations:
     State and local courts and their agencies (42 U.S.C. 
10705(b)(1)(A)).
     National nonprofit organizations controlled by, operating 
in conjunction with, and serving the judicial branches of State 
governments (42 U.S.C. 10705(b)(1)(B)).
     National nonprofit organizations for the education and 
training of judges and support personnel of the judicial branch of 
State governments (42 U.S.C. 10705(b)(1)(C)). An applicant is 
considered a national education and training applicant under section 
10705(b)(1)(C) if:
    [ssquf] The principal purpose or activity of the applicant is to 
provide education and training to State and local judges and court 
personnel; and
    [ssquf] The applicant demonstrates a record of substantial 
experience in the field of judicial education and training.
     Other eligible grant recipients (42 U.S.C. 10705 (b)(2)(A) 
through (D)).
    [ssquf] Provided that the objectives of the project can be served 
better, SJI is also authorized to make awards to:
    [cir] Nonprofit organizations with expertise in judicial 
administration
    [cir] Institutions of higher education
    [cir] Individuals, partnerships, firms, corporations (for-profit 
organizations must waive their fees)
    [cir] Private agencies with expertise in judicial administration
    [ssquf] SJI may also make awards to State or local agencies and 
institutions other than courts for services that cannot be adequately 
provided through nongovernmental arrangements (42 U.S.C. 10705(b)(3)).
    SJI is prohibited from awarding grants to Federal, tribal, and 
international courts.

II. Grant Application Deadlines

    The SJI Board of Directors makes awards on a Federal fiscal year 
quarterly basis. Applications may be submitted at any time but will be 
considered for award based only on the timetable below.

      Table 1--Application Deadlines by Federal Fiscal Year Quarter
------------------------------------------------------------------------
        Federal fiscal year quarter             Application due date
------------------------------------------------------------------------
1.........................................  November 1.
2.........................................  February 1.
3.........................................  May 1.
4.........................................  August 1.
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    To be considered timely, an application must be submitted by the 
application deadline noted above. Applicants must use the SJI Grants 
Management System (GMS) to submit all applications and post-award 
documents. The SJI GMS is accessible at https://gms.sji.gov. The SJI 
urges applicants to submit applications at least 72 hours prior to the 
application due date to allow time for the applicant to receive an 
application acceptance message and to correct in a timely fashion any 
problems that may arise, such as missing or incomplete forms.
    Questions related to the SJI Grant Program or the SJI GMS should be 
directed to [email protected].

III. The Mission of the State Justice Institute

    The State Justice Institute Authorization Act of 1984 (42 U.S.C. 
10701 et seq.) established SJI to improve the administration of justice 
in the State courts of the United States. Incorporated in the State of 
Virginia as a private, nonprofit corporation, SJI is charged, by 
statute, with the responsibility to:
     Direct a national program of financial assistance designed 
to ensure that each citizen of the United States is provided ready 
access to a fair and effective system of justice;
     Foster coordination and cooperation with the Federal 
judiciary;
     Promote recognition of the importance of the separation of 
powers doctrine to an independent judiciary; and
     Encourage education for judges and support personnel of 
State court systems

[[Page 58981]]

through national and State organizations.
    To accomplish these broad objectives, SJI is authorized to provide 
funding to State courts, national organizations that support and are 
supported by State courts, national judicial education organizations, 
and other organizations that can assist in improving the quality of 
justice in the State courts.
    Through the award of grants, contracts, and cooperative agreements, 
SJI is authorized to perform the following activities:
     Support technical assistance, demonstrations, special 
projects, research, and training to improve the administration of 
justice in the State courts;
     Provide for the preparation, publication, and 
dissemination of information regarding State judicial systems;
     Participate in joint projects with Federal agencies and 
other private grantors;
     Evaluate or provide for the evaluation of programs and 
projects to determine their impact upon the quality of criminal, civil, 
and juvenile justice and the extent to which they have contributed to 
improving the quality of justice in the State courts;
     Encourage and assist in furthering judicial education; and
     Encourage, assist, and serve in a consulting capacity to 
State and local courts in the development, maintenance, and 
coordination of criminal, civil, and juvenile justice programs and 
services.
    SJI is supervised by a Board of Directors appointed by the U.S. 
President, with the advice and consent of the U.S. Senate. The SJI 
Board of Directors is statutorily composed of six judges; a State court 
administrator and four members of the public, no more than two of the 
same political party. Additional information about SJI, including a 
list of members of the SJI Board of Directors, is available at https://www.sji.gov.

A. Priority Investment Areas

    The SJI Board of Directors has established Priority Investment 
Areas for grant funding. SJI will allocate significant financial 
resources through grant-making for these Priority Investment Areas. The 
Priority Investment Areas are applicable to all grant types. SJI 
strongly encourages potential grant applicants to consider projects 
addressing one or more of these Priority Investment Areas and to 
integrate the following factors into each proposed project:
     Evidence based, data-driven decision making;
     Cross-sector collaboration;
     Systemic approaches (as opposed to standalone programs);
     Institutionalization of new court processes and 
procedures;
     Ease of replication; and
     Sustainability
    For FY 2022, the Priority Investment Areas are listed below in no 
specific order.
    1. Opioids and Other Dangerous Drugs, and Behavioral Health 
Responses.
     Behavioral Health Disparities--Research indicates that 
justice-involved persons have significantly greater proportions of 
mental, substance use, and co-occurring disorders than are found in the 
public. SJI supports cross-sector collaboration and information sharing 
that emphasizes policies and practices designed to improve court 
responses to justice-involved persons with behavioral health and other 
co-occurring needs.
     Trauma Informed Approaches--Judges, court staff, system 
stakeholders and court-involved persons (defendants, respondents, and 
victims) alike may be impacted by prior trauma. This is particularly, 
but not exclusively, true for those with mental illness and/or 
substance use disorders. SJI supports trauma-informed training, 
policies, and practices in all aspects of the judicial process.
    2. Promoting Access to Justice and Procedural Fairness.
     Self-Represented Litigation--SJI promotes court-based 
solutions to address increases in self-represented litigants; helps 
make courts more user-friendly by simplifying court forms; provides 
one-on-one assistance; develops guides, handbooks, and instructions on 
how to proceed; develops court-based self-help centers; and uses 
internet technologies to increase access. These projects are improving 
outcomes for litigants and saving valuable court resources.
     Language Access--SJI supports language access in the State 
courts through remote interpretation (outside the courtroom), 
interpreter training and certification, courtroom services (plain 
language forms, websites, etc.), and addressing the requirements of 
Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (42 U.S.C. 2000d et seq.) and 
the Omnibus Crime Control and Safe Streets Act (34 U.S.C. 10101 et 
seq.).
     Procedural Fairness--A fundamental role of courts is to 
ensure fair processes and just outcomes for litigants. SJI promotes the 
integration of research-based procedural fairness principles, policies, 
and practices into State court operations to increase public trust and 
confidence in the court system, reduce recidivism, and increase 
compliance with court orders.
    3. Reducing Disparities and Protecting Victims, Underserved, and 
Vulnerable Populations.
     Disparities in Justice--SJI supports research and data-
driven approaches that examine statutory requirements, policies, and 
practices that result in disparities for justice-involved persons. 
These disparities can be because of inequities in socioeconomic, 
racial, ethnic, gender, age, health, or other factors. In addition to 
identifying disparities, SJI promotes systemic approaches to reducing 
disparities.
     Human Trafficking--SJI addresses the impact of Federal and 
State human trafficking laws on the State courts, and the challenges 
faced by State courts in dealing with cases involving trafficking 
victims and their families. These efforts are intended to empower State 
courts to identify victims, link them with vital services, and hold 
traffickers accountable.
     Rural Justice--Rural areas and their justice systems 
routinely have fewer resources and more barriers than their urban 
counterparts, such as availability of services, lack of transportation, 
and smaller workforces. Programs and practices that are effective in 
urban areas are often inappropriate and or lack supported research for 
implementation in rural areas. SJI supports rural courts by identifying 
promising and best practices, and promoting resources, education, and 
training opportunities uniquely designed for rural courts and court 
users.
     Guardianship, Conservatorship, and Elder Issues--SJI 
assists courts in improving court oversight of guardians and 
conservators for the elderly and incapacitated adults through visitor 
programs, electronic reporting, and training.
    4. Advancing Justice Reform.
     Criminal Justice Reform--SJI assists State courts in 
taking a leadership role in reviewing fines, fees, and bail practices 
to ensure processes are fair and access to justice is assured; 
implements alternative forms of sanction; develops processes for 
indigency review; promotes transparency, governance, and structural 
reforms that promote access to justice, accountability, and oversight; 
and implements innovative diversion and reentry programs that serve to 
improve outcomes for justice-involved persons and the justice system.
     Juvenile Justice Reform--SJI supports innovative projects 
that

[[Page 58982]]

advance best practices in handling dependency and delinquency cases; 
promote effective court oversight of juveniles in the justice system; 
address the impact of trauma on juvenile behavior; assist the courts in 
identification of appropriate provision of services for juveniles; and 
address juvenile reentry.
     Family and Civil Justice Reform--SJI promotes court-based 
solutions for the myriad of civil case types, such as domestic 
relations, housing, employment, debt collection, which are overwhelming 
court dockets.
    Transforming Courts.
     Emergency Response and Recovery--Courts must be prepared 
for natural disasters and public health emergencies and 
institutionalize the most effective and efficient practices and 
processes that evolve during response and recovery. SJI supports 
projects that look to the future of judicial service delivery by 
identifying and replicating innovations and alternate means of 
conducting court business due to public health emergencies such as 
pandemics and natural disasters such as hurricanes, earthquakes, and 
wildfires.
     Cybersecurity--Courts must also be prepared for 
cyberattacks on court systems, such as denial of service and ransomware 
attacks on court case management systems, websites, and other critical 
information technology infrastructure. SJI supports projects that 
assist courts in preparing for and responding to these attacks, and 
share lessons learned to courts across the United States.
     Technology--Courts must integrate technological advances 
into daily judicial processes and proceedings. SJI supports projects 
that institutionalize the innovative technology that has successfully 
advanced the use of electronic filing and payment systems, online 
dispute resolution, remote work, and virtual court proceedings. SJI 
promotes projects that streamline case filing and management processes, 
thereby reducing time and costs to litigants and the courts; provide 
online access to courts to litigants so that disputes can be resolved 
more efficiently; and make structural changes to court services that 
enable them to evolve into an online environment.
     Strategic Planning--Courts must rely on a deliberate 
process to determine organizational values, mission, vision, goals, and 
objectives. SJI promotes structured planning processes and 
organizational assessments to assist courts in setting priorities, 
allocating resources, and identifying areas for ongoing improvements in 
efficiency and effectiveness. Strategic planning includes elements of 
court governance, data collection, management, analysis, sharing, and 
sustainable court governance models that drive decision-making. 
Strategic plans and outcomes should be communicated to judges, court 
staff, justice partners, and the public.
     Training, Education, and Workforce Development--State 
courts require a workforce that is adaptable to public demands for 
services. SJI supports projects that focus on the tools needed to 
enable judges, court managers, and staff to be innovative, forward-
thinking court leaders.

IV. Grant Types

    SJI supports five types of grants: Project, Technical Assistance 
(TA), Curriculum Adaptation and Training (CAT), Strategic Initiatives 
Grants (SIG) Program, and the Education Support Program (ESP). A brief 
description of each type of grant is below.

A. Project Grant

    Project grants are intended to support innovative education and 
training, research and evaluation, demonstration, and technical 
assistance projects that can improve the administration of justice in 
State courts locally or nationwide. State court and national nonprofit 
applicants may request up to $300,000 for 36 months. Local court 
applicants may request up to $200,000 for 24 months. Examples of 
expenses not covered by Project Grants include the salaries, benefits, 
or travel of full-or part-time court employees. Funding may not be used 
for the ordinary, routine operations of court systems.
    All applicants for Project Grants must contribute a cash match 
greater than or equal to the SJI award amount. This means that grant 
awards by SJI must be matched at least dollar for dollar by grant 
applicants. For example, an applicant seeking a $300,000 Project Grant 
must provide a cash match of at least $300,000. Applicants may 
contribute the required cash match directly or in cooperation with 
third parties. Funding from other federal departments or agencies may 
not be used for cash match.

B. Technical Assistance (TA) Grant

    TA grants are intended to provide State or local courts, or 
regional court associations, with sufficient support to obtain expert 
assistance to diagnose a problem, develop a response to that problem, 
and implement any needed changes. TA Grants may not exceed $75,000 or 
12 months in duration. In calculating project duration, applicants are 
cautioned to fully consider the time required to issue a request for 
proposals, negotiate a contract with the selected provider, and execute 
the project. Funds may not be used for salaries, benefits, or travel of 
full- or part-time court employees.
    Applicants for TA Grants are required to contribute a total match 
(cash and in-kind) of not less than 50 percent of the SJI award amount, 
of which 20 percent must be cash. For example, an applicant seeking a 
$75,000 TA grant must provide a $37,500 match, of which up to $30,000 
can be in-kind and not less than $7,500 must be cash. Funding from 
other federal departments and agencies may not be used for cash match.

C. Curriculum Adaptation and Training (CAT) Grant

    CAT Grants are intended to: (1) Enable courts or national court 
associations to modify and adapt model curricula, course modules, or 
conference programs to meet States' or local jurisdictions' educational 
needs; train instructors to present portions or all of the curricula; 
and pilot-test them to determine their appropriateness, quality, and 
effectiveness; or (2) conduct judicial branch education and training 
programs, led by either expert or in-house personnel, designed to 
prepare judges and court personnel for innovations, reforms, and/or new 
technologies recently adopted by grantee courts. CAT grants may not 
exceed $40,000 or 12 months in duration. Examples of expenses not 
covered by CAT grants include the salaries, benefits, or travel of 
full-or part-time court employees.
    Applicants for CAT Grants are required to contribute a total match 
(cash and in-kind) of not less than 50 percent of the SJI award amount, 
of which 20 percent must be cash. For example, an applicant seeking a 
$40,000 CAT grant must provide a $20,000 match, of which up to $16,000 
can be in-kind and not less than $4,000 must be cash. Funding from 
other federal departments and agencies may not be used for cash match.

D. Strategic Initiatives Grant (SIG) Program

    The SIG program provides SJI with the flexibility to address 
national court issues as they occur and develop solutions to those 
problems. This is an innovative approach where SJI uses its expertise 
and the expertise and knowledge of its grantees to address key issues 
facing State courts across the United States.
    The funding is used for grants or contractual services and is 
handled at

[[Page 58983]]

the discretion of the SJI Board of Directors and staff. SJI requires 
the submission of a concept paper prior to the full application 
process. Only applicants that submit an approved concept paper will be 
invited to submit a full application for funding. Potential applicants 
are strongly encouraged to contact SJI prior to submitting a concept 
paper for guidance on this initial step.

E. Education Support Program (ESP) for Judges and Court Managers

    The ESP is intended to enhance the skills, knowledge, and abilities 
of State court judges and court managers by enabling them to attend 
out-of-state, or to enroll in online, educational and training programs 
sponsored by national and State providers they could not otherwise 
attend or take online because of limited State, local, and personal 
budgets. The program covers only the cost of tuition up to a maximum of 
$1,000 per course.
    The ESP is administered by the National Judicial College (NJC) and 
the National Center for State Courts (NCSC)/Institute for Court 
Management (ICM), in partnership with SJI. For NJC courses, register 
online at https://www.judges.org/courses. For ICM courses, register 
online at https://www.ncsc.org/education-and-careers/icm-courses. 
During the respective registration processes, each website will ask 
whether a scholarship is needed to participate. Follow the online 
instructions to request tuition assistance.

V. Application and Submission Information

    This section describes in detail what an application should 
include. An applicant should anticipate that if it fails to submit an 
application that contains all the specified project components, it may 
negatively affect the review of the application. Applicants must use 
the SJI GMS to submit all applications and post-award documents. The 
SJI GMS is accessible at https://gms.sji.gov.

A. Application Components

    Applicants for SJI grants must submit the following forms and/or 
documents via the SJI GMS:
1. Application Form (Form A)
    The application form requests basic information regarding the 
proposed project, the applicant, and the total amount of funding 
requested from SJI. It also requires the signature of an individual 
authorized to certify on behalf of the applicant that the information 
contained in the application is true and complete; submission of the 
application has been authorized by the applicant; and, if funding for 
the proposed project is approved, the applicant will comply with the 
requirements and conditions of the award, including the assurances set 
forth in Form D in section V.A.4, Assurances (Form D) of this 
guideline.
2. Certificate of State Approval (Form B)
    An application from a State or local court must include a copy of 
Form B signed by the State's chief justice or State court 
administrator. The signature denotes that the proposed project has been 
approved by the State's highest court or the agency or council it has 
designated. Further, the signature denotes, if applicable, a cash match 
reduction has been requested, and that if SJI approves funding for the 
project, the court or the specified designee will receive, administer, 
and be accountable for the awarded funds.
3. Budget Form (Form C)
    Applicants must provide a detailed budget and a budget narrative 
providing an explanation of the basis for the estimates in each budget 
category. If funds from other sources are required to conduct the 
project, either as match or to support other aspects of the project, 
the source, current status of the request, and anticipated decision 
date must be provided.
4. Assurances (Form D)
    Form D lists the statutory, regulatory, and policy requirements 
with which recipients of SJI funds must comply.
5. Disclosure of Lobbying Activities (Form E)
    Applicants other than units of State or local government are 
required to disclose whether they, or another entity that is part of 
the same organization as the applicant, have advocated a position 
before Congress on any issue, and to identify the specific subjects of 
their lobbying efforts.
6. Project Abstract
    The abstract should highlight the purposes, goals, methods, and 
anticipated benefits of the proposed project. It should not exceed one 
single-spaced page and should be uploaded on the ``Attachments'' tab in 
SJI GMS.
7. Program Narrative
    The program narrative for an application may not exceed 25 double-
spaced pages on 8\1/2\- by 11-inch paper with 1-inch margins, using a 
standard 12-point font. The pages should be numbered. This page limit 
does not include the forms, the abstract, the budget narrative, or any 
additional attachments. The program narrative should address the 
following, noting any specific areas to address by grant type:
    a. Statement of Need. Applicants must explain the critical need 
they are facing, and how SJI funds will enable them to meet this 
critical need. The applicants must also explain why State or local 
resources are not sufficient to fully support the costs of the project.
    Applicants must provide a verified source for the data that 
supports the statement of the problem (i.e., Federal, State, and local 
databases). The discussion should include specific references to the 
relevant literature and to the experience in the field. SJI continues 
to make all grant reports and most grant products available online 
through the NCSC Library and Digital Archive. Applicants are required 
to conduct a search of the NCSC Library and Digital Archive on the 
topic areas they are addressing. This search should include SJI-funded 
grants and previous projects not supported by SJI. Searches for SJI 
grant reports and other State court resources begin with the NCSC 
Library section. Applicants must discuss the results of their research, 
how they plan to incorporate the previous work into their proposed 
project, and if the project will differentiate from prior work.
    b. Project Grants. If the project is to be conducted in any 
specific location(s), applicants should discuss the particular needs of 
the project site(s) the project would address and why existing 
programs, procedures, services, or other resources do not meet those 
needs.
    If the project is not site-specific, the applicants should discuss 
the problems that the proposed project would address, and why existing 
programs, procedures, services, or other resources cannot adequately 
resolve those problems. In addition, applicants should describe how, if 
applicable, the project will be sustained in the future through 
existing resources.
    c. TA Grants. Applicants should explain why State or local 
resources are unable to fully support the modification and presentation 
of the model curriculum. The applicants should also describe the 
potential for replicating or integrating the adapted curriculum in the 
future using State or local funds once it has been successfully adapted 
and tested. In addition, applicants should describe how, if applicable, 
the project will be sustained in the future through existing resources.
    d. CAT Grants (curriculum adaptation). Applicants should explain

[[Page 58984]]

why State or local resources are unable to fully support the 
modification and presentation of the model curriculum. The applicants 
should also describe the potential for replicating or integrating the 
adapted curriculum in the future using State or local funds once it has 
been successfully adapted and tested.
    e. CAT Grants (training). The applicants should describe the court 
reform or initiative prompting the need for training. Applicants should 
also discuss how the proposed training will help them implement planned 
changes at the court, and why State or local resources are not 
sufficient to fully support the costs of the required training.
    f. SIGs. Applicants should detail the origin of the project (i.e., 
requested by SJI or a request to SJI) and provide a detailed 
description about the issue of national impact the proposed project 
will address, including any evaluations, reports, resolutions, or other 
data to support the need statement.

B. Project Description and Objectives

    The applicants should include a clear, concise statement of what 
the proposed project is intended to accomplish and how those objectives 
will be met. Applicants should delineate the tasks to be performed in 
achieving the project objectives and the methods to be used for 
accomplishing each task.
    Applicants must describe how the proposed project addresses one or 
more Priority Investment Areas. If the project does not address one or 
more Priority Investment Areas, the applicants must provide an 
explanation as to the reason.
1. Application Details by Project Type
    a. Project grants. The applicants should include detailed 
descriptions of tasks, methods, and evaluations. For example:
     Research and evaluation projects. The applicants should 
include the data sources, data collection strategies, variables to be 
examined, and analytic procedures to be used for conducting the 
research or evaluation and ensuring the validity and general 
applicability of the results. For projects involving human subjects, 
the discussion of methods should address the procedures for obtaining 
respondents' informed consent, ensuring the respondents' privacy and 
freedom from risk or harm, and protecting others who are not the 
subjects of research but would be affected by the research. If the 
potential exists for risk or harm to human subjects, a discussion 
should be included that explains the value of the proposed research and 
the methods to be used to minimize or eliminate such risk. Refer to 
section VIII.R.3, Human Subject Protection of this guideline for 
additional information.
     Education and training projects. The applicants should 
include the adult education techniques to be used in designing and 
presenting the program, including the teaching and learning objectives 
of the educational design, the teaching methods to be used, and the 
opportunities for structured interaction among the participants. The 
opportunities applicants should include are: How faculty would be 
recruited, selected, and trained; the proposed number and length of the 
conferences, courses, seminars, or workshops to be conducted and the 
estimated number of persons who would attend them; the materials to be 
provided and how they would be developed; and the cost to participants.
     Demonstration projects. The applicants should include the 
demonstration sites and the reasons they were selected or, if the sites 
have not been chosen, how they would be identified; how the applicants 
would obtain the cooperation of demonstration sites; and how the 
program or procedures would be implemented and monitored.
     Technical assistance projects. The applicants should 
explain the types of assistance that would be provided, the particular 
issues and problems for which assistance would be provided, the type of 
assistance determined, how suitable providers would be selected and 
briefed, and how reports would be reviewed.
    b. TA Grants. Applicants must identify which organization or 
individual will be hired to provide the assistance, and how the 
consultant was selected. The applicants must describe the tasks the 
consultant will perform, and how the tasks will be accomplished.
    If a consultant has not yet been identified, the applicants must 
describe the procedures and criteria that will be used to select the 
consultant (applicants are expected to follow their jurisdictions' 
normal procedures for procuring consultant services).
    If the consultant has been identified, the applicants should 
provide a letter from that individual or organization documenting 
interest in and availability for the project, as well as the 
consultant's ability to complete the assignment within the proposed 
time frame and for the proposed cost. The consultant must agree to 
submit a detailed written report to the court and SJI upon completion 
of the technical assistance. Applicants should then describe the steps 
that have been or will be taken to facilitate implementation of the 
consultant's recommendations upon completion of the technical 
assistance.
    The applicants should then address the following questions:
     What specific tasks will the consultant and court staff 
undertake?
     What is the schedule for completion of each required task 
and the entire project?
     How will the applicant oversee the project and provide 
guidance to the consultant, and who at the court or regional court 
association would be responsible for coordinating all project tasks and 
submitting quarterly progress and financial status reports?
    c. CAT Grants (curriculum adaptation). The applicants must provide 
the title of the curriculum that will be adapted and identify the 
entity that originally developed the curriculum. Applicants should 
allow at least 90 days between the potential award date and the date of 
the proposed program to allow sufficient time for planning. This period 
of time should be reflected in the project timeline. The applicants 
must also address the following questions:
     Why is this education program needed at the present time?
     What are the project's goals?
     What are the learning objectives of the adapted 
curriculum?
     What program components would be implemented, and what 
types of modifications, if any, are anticipated in length, format, 
learning objectives, teaching methods, or content?
     Who would be responsible for adapting the model 
curriculum?
     Who would the participants be, how many would there be, 
how would they be recruited, and from where would they come (e.g., from 
a single local jurisdiction, from across the State, from a multi-state 
region, from across the nation)?
    The applicants should also provide the proposed timeline, including 
the project start and end dates, the date(s) the judicial branch 
education program will be presented, and the process that will be used 
to modify and present the program. Applicants should also identify who 
will serve as faculty, and how they will be selected, in addition to 
the measures taken to facilitate subsequent presentations of the 
program.
    d. CAT grants (training). The applicants must identify the tasks 
the trainer will be expected to perform, which organization or 
individual will be hired, and, if in-house personnel are not the 
trainer, how the trainer will be selected.
    If a trainer has not yet been identified, the applicants must 
describe the

[[Page 58985]]

procedures and criteria that will be used to select the trainer.
    If the trainer has been identified, the applicants should provide a 
letter from that individual or organization documenting interest in and 
availability for the project, as well as the trainer's ability to 
complete the assignment within the proposed time frame and for the 
proposed cost.
    In addition, the applicants should address the following questions:
     What specific tasks would the trainer and court staff or 
regional court association members undertake?
     What presentation methods will be used?
     What is the schedule for completion of each required task 
and the entire project?
     How will the applicant oversee the project and provide 
guidance to the trainer, and who at the court or affiliated with the 
regional court association would be responsible for coordinating all 
project tasks and submitting quarterly progress and financial status 
reports?
     The applicant should explain what steps have been or will 
be taken to coordinate the implementation of the training. For example, 
if the support or cooperation of specific court, regional court 
association officials, committees, other agencies, funding bodies, 
organizations, or a court other than the applicant will be needed to 
adopt the reform and initiate the proposed training, how will the 
applicant secure their involvement in the development and 
implementation of the training?
    e. SIGs. The applicants should expand upon the project description 
and objectives described in the approved concept paper. Any and all 
feedback and questions submitted by the SJI Board of Directors and 
staff during the review of the concept paper should also be 
incorporated into the project design.
2. Dissemination Plan
    The application must: (1) Explain how and to whom the products 
would be disseminated; describe how they would benefit the State 
courts, including how they could be used by judges and court personnel; 
(2) identify development, production, and dissemination costs covered 
by the project budget; and (3) present the basis on which products and 
services developed or provided under the grant would be offered to the 
court community and the public at large (i.e., whether products would 
be distributed at no cost to recipients, or if costs are involved, the 
reason for charging recipients and the estimated price of the product). 
Ordinarily, applicants should schedule all product preparation and 
distribution activities within the project period.
    The type of product to be prepared depends on the nature of the 
project. For example, in most instances, the products of a research, 
evaluation, or demonstration project should include: (1) An article 
summarizing the project findings that is publishable in a journal 
serving the courts community nationally, (2) an executive summary that 
would be disseminated to the project's primary audience, or (3) both an 
article and executive summary. Applicants proposing to conduct 
empirical research or evaluation projects with national import should 
describe how they would make their data available for secondary 
analysis after the grant period.
    The curricula and other products developed through education and 
training projects should be designed for use by others and again by the 
original participants in the course of their duties. Applicants 
proposing to develop web-based products should provide for sending a 
notice and description of the document to the appropriate audiences to 
alert them to the availability of the website or electronic product 
(i.e., a written report with a reference to the website).
    Applicants must submit a final draft of all written grant products 
to SJI for review and approval at least 30 days before the products are 
submitted for publication or reproduction. For products in website or 
multimedia format, applicants must provide for SJI review of the 
product at the treatment, script, rough-cut, and final stages of 
development, or their equivalents. No grant funds may be obligated for 
publication or reproduction of a final grant product without the 
written approval of SJI. Project products should be submitted to SJI 
electronically in HTML or PDF format.
    Applicants must also include in all project products a prominent 
acknowledgment that SJI provided support and a disclaimer paragraph 
such as, ``This [document, film, videotape, etc.] was developed under 
[grant/cooperative agreement] number SJI-[insert number] from the State 
Justice Institute. The points of view expressed are those of the 
[author(s), filmmaker(s), etc.] and do not necessarily represent the 
official position or policies of the State Justice Institute.'' The 
``SJI'' logo must appear on the front cover of a written product or in 
the opening frames of a website or other multimedia products, unless 
SJI approves another placement. The SJI logo can be downloaded from 
SJI's website: https://www.sji.gov.
3. Staff Capability and Organizational Capacity
    An applicant that is not a State or local court and has not 
received a grant from SJI within the past 3 years should indicate 
whether it is either: (1) A national nonprofit organization controlled 
by, operating in conjunction with, and serving the judicial branches of 
State governments, or (2) a national nonprofit organization for the 
education and training of State court judges and support personnel. If 
the applicant is a nonjudicial unit of Federal, State, or local 
government, it must explain whether the proposed services could be 
adequately provided by nongovernmental entities.
    Applicants that have not received a grant from SJI within the past 
3 years should include a statement describing their capacity to 
administer grant funds, including the financial systems used to monitor 
project expenditures (and income, if any), a summary of their past 
experience in administering grants, and any resources or capabilities 
they have that would particularly assist in the successful completion 
of the project.
    Unless requested otherwise, an applicant that has received a grant 
from SJI within the past 3 years should describe only the changes in 
its organizational capacity, tax status, or financial capability that 
may affect its capacity to administer a grant. If the applicant is a 
nonprofit organization (other than a university), it must also provide 
documentation of its 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status as determined by the 
Internal Revenue Service and a copy of a current certified audit 
report. For the purpose of this requirement, ``current'' means no 
earlier than 2 years prior to the present calendar year.
    The applicant should include a summary of key staff members' and 
consultant's training and experience that qualify them for conducting 
and managing the proposed project. Resumes of identified staff should 
be attached to the application. If one or more key staff members and 
consultants are not known at the time of the application, a description 
of the criteria that would be used to select persons for these 
positions should be included. The applicant should also identify the 
person who would be responsible for managing and reporting on the 
financial aspects of the proposed project.
4. Evaluation
    Projects should include an evaluation plan to determine whether the 
project met its objectives. The evaluation

[[Page 58986]]

should be designed to provide an objective and independent assessment 
of the effectiveness or usefulness of the training or services 
provided; the impact of the procedures, technology, or services tested; 
or the validity and applicability of the research conducted. The 
evaluation plan should be appropriate to the type of project proposed 
considering the nature, scope, and magnitude of the project.
5. Sustainability
    Describe how the project will be sustained after SJI assistance 
ends. The sustainability plan should describe how current 
collaborations and evaluations will be used to leverage ongoing 
resources. SJI encourages applicants to ensure sustainability by 
coordinating with local, State, and other Federal resources.

C. Budget and Matching State Contribution

    Applicants must complete a budget in the SJI GMS and upload a 
budget narrative. The budget narrative should provide the basis for all 
project-related costs and the sources of any match, as required. The 
budget narrative should thoroughly and clearly describe every category 
of expense listed. SJI expects proposed budgets to be complete, cost 
effective, and allowable (e.g., reasonable, allocable, and necessary 
for project activities).
    1. Prohibited Uses of SJI Funds. To ensure that funds made 
available are used to supplement and improve the operation of State 
courts, rather than to support basic court services, funds shall not be 
used:
     To supplant State or local funds supporting a program or 
activity (such as paying the salary of court employees who would be 
performing their normal duties as part of the project or paying rent 
for space that is part of the court's normal operations).
     To construct court facilities or structures.
     Solely to purchase equipment.
    Examples of basic court services include:

 Hiring of personnel
 Purchase and/or maintenance of equipment
 Purchase of software and/or licenses
 Purchase of internet access or service
 Supplies to support the day-to-day operations of courts

    The final determination of what constitutes basic court services is 
made by SJI and is not negotiable.
    Meals and refreshments are generally not allowable costs unless the 
applicant or grantee obtains prior written approval from SJI. This 
applies to all awards, including contracts, grants, and cooperative 
agreements. In general, SJI may approve such costs only in very rare 
instances where:
     Sustenance is not otherwise available (e.g., extremely 
remote areas);
     The size of the event and nearby food and/or beverage 
vendors would make it impractical to not provide meals and/or 
refreshments; and/or
     A special presentation at a conference requires a plenary 
address where there is no other time for sustenance to be obtained.
    Trinkets (items such as hats, mugs, portfolios, t-shirts, coins, 
gift bags, gift cards, etc.) may not be purchased with SJI grant 
funding.
    2. Justification of Personnel Compensation. The applicants should 
set forth the amount of time the individuals who would staff the 
proposed project would devote, the annual salary of each of those 
persons, and the number of work days per year used for calculating the 
amount of time or daily rates of those individuals. The applicants 
should explain any deviations from current rates or established written 
organizational policies. No grant funds or cash match may be used to 
pay the salary and related costs for a current or new employee of a 
court or other unit of government because such funds would constitute a 
supplantation of State or local funds in violation of 42 U.S.C. 
10706(d)(1); this includes new employees hired specifically for the 
project. The salary and any related costs for a current or new employee 
of a court or other unit of government may only be accepted as in-kind 
match.
    3. Fringe Benefit Computation. For nongovernmental entities, 
applicants should provide a description of the fringe benefits provided 
to employees. If percentages are used, the authority for such use 
should be presented, as well as a description of the elements included 
in the determination of the percentage rate.
    4. Consultant/Contractual Services and Honoraria. The applicants 
should describe the tasks each consultant would perform, the estimated 
total amount to be paid to each consultant, the basis for compensation 
rates (e.g., the number of days multiplied by the daily consultant 
rates), and the method for selection. Prior written SJI approval is 
required for any consultant rate in excess of $800 per day; SJI funds 
may not be used to pay a consultant more than $1,100 per day. 
Honorarium payments must be justified in the same manner as consultant 
payments.
    5. Travel. Transportation costs and per diem rates must comply with 
the policies of the applicant organization. If the applicant does not 
have an established travel policy, then travel rates must be consistent 
with those established by the Federal Government. The budget narrative 
should include an explanation of the rate used, including the 
components of the per diem rate and the basis for the estimated 
transportation expenses. The purpose of the travel should also be 
included in the narrative.
    6. Equipment. Grant funds may be used to purchase only the 
equipment necessary to demonstrate a new technological application in a 
court or that is otherwise essential to accomplishing the objectives of 
the project. In other words, grant funds cannot be used strictly for 
the purpose of purchasing equipment. Equipment purchases to support 
basic court operations will not be approved. Applicants should describe 
the equipment to be purchased or leased and explain why the acquisition 
of that equipment is essential to accomplish the project's goals and 
objectives. The narrative should clearly identify which equipment is to 
be leased and which is to be purchased. The method of procurement 
should also be described.
    7. Supplies. Applicants should provide a general description of the 
supplies necessary to accomplish the goals and objectives of the grant. 
In addition, the applicants should provide the basis for the amount 
requested for this expenditure category.
    8. Construction. Construction expenses are prohibited.
    9. Postage. Anticipated postage costs for project-related mailings, 
including distribution of the final product(s), should be described in 
the budget narrative. The cost of special mailings, such as for a 
survey or for announcing a workshop, should be distinguished from 
routine mailing costs. The bases for all postage estimates should be 
included in the budget narrative.
    9. Printing/Photocopying. Anticipated costs for printing or 
photocopying project documents, reports, and publications should be 
included in the budget narrative, along with the bases used to 
calculate these estimates.
    10. Indirect Costs. Indirect costs are only applicable to 
organizations that are not State courts or government agencies. 
Recoverable indirect costs are limited to no more than 75 percent of a 
grantee's direct personnel costs, i.e., salaries plus fringe benefits. 
Applicants should describe the indirect cost rates applicable to the 
grant in detail. If costs often included within an indirect cost

[[Page 58987]]

rate are charged directly (e.g., a percentage of the time of senior 
managers to supervise project activities), the applicants should 
specify that these costs are not included within its approved indirect 
cost rate. If an applicant has an indirect cost rate or allocation plan 
approved by any Federal granting agency, a copy of the approved rate 
agreement must be attached to the application.
    11. Matching Requirements. SJI grants require a match, which is the 
portion of project costs not borne by SJI and includes both cash and 
in-kind matches as outlined in this paragraph. A cash match is the 
direct outlay of funds by the grantee or a third party to support the 
project. Other Federal department and agency funding may not be used 
for cash match. An in-kind match consists of contributions of time and/
or services of current staff members, new employees, space, supplies, 
etc., made to the project by the grantee or others (e.g., advisory 
board members) working directly on the project. An in-kind match can 
also consist of that portion of the grantee's federally approved 
indirect cost rate that exceeds the limit of permitted charges (75 
percent of salaries and benefits).
    The grantee is responsible for ensuring that the total amount of 
match proposed is contributed. If a proposed contribution is not fully 
met, SJI may reduce the award amount accordingly, to maintain the ratio 
originally provided for in the award agreement. The match should be 
expended at the same rate as SJI funding.
    a. Project Grants. Applicants for Project Grants must contribute a 
cash match greater than or equal to the SJI award amount. This means 
that grant awards by SJI must be matched at least dollar for dollar by 
grant applicants. For example, an applicant seeking a $300,000 Project 
Grant must provide a cash match of at least $300,000. Applicants may 
contribute the required cash match directly or in cooperation with 
third parties.
    b. TA Grants. Applicants for TA Grants are required to contribute a 
total match (cash and in-kind) of not less than 50 percent of the SJI 
award amount, of which 20 percent must be cash. For example, an 
applicant seeking a $75,000 TA grant must provide a $37,500 match, of 
which up to $30,000 can be in-kind and not less than $7,500 must be 
cash.
    c. CAT Grants. Applicants for CAT Grants are required to contribute 
a total match (cash and in-kind) of not less than 50 percent of the SJI 
award amount, of which 20 percent must be cash. For example, an 
applicant seeking a $40,000 CAT grant must provide a $20,000 match, of 
which up to $16,000 can be in-kind and not less than $4,000 must be 
cash. Funding from other federal departments and agencies may not be 
used for cash match.
    d. SIGs. State and local courts and non-court units of government 
must provide a dollar-for-dollar cash match for SIG projects. Matching 
funds may not be required for SIG projects that are awarded to non-
court or nongovernmental entities.
    12. Letters of Support. Written assurances of support or 
cooperation should accompany the application letter if the support or 
cooperation of agencies, funding bodies, organizations, or courts other 
than the applicant would be needed in order for the consultant to 
perform the required tasks. Applicants may also submit memorandums of 
agreement or understanding, as appropriate.
    13. Project Timeline. A project timeline detailing each project 
objective, activity, expected completion date, and responsible person 
or organization should be included. The plan should include the 
starting and completion date for each task; the time commitments to the 
project of key staff and their responsibilities regarding each project 
task; and the procedures that would ensure that all tasks are performed 
on time, within budget, and at the highest level of quality. In 
preparing the project timeline, applicants should make certain that all 
project activities, including publication or reproduction of project 
products and their initial dissemination, would occur within the 
proposed project period. The project timeline must also provide for the 
submission of Quarterly Progress and Financial Reports within 30 days 
after the close of each calendar quarter, as well as submission of all 
final closeout documents. The project timeline may be included in the 
program narrative or provided as a separate attachment.
    14. Other Attachments. Resumes of key project staff may also be 
included. Additional background material should be attached only if it 
is essential to impart a clear understanding of the proposed project. 
Numerous and lengthy appendices are strongly discouraged.

D. Application Review Information

    1. Selection Criteria. In addition to the criteria detailed below, 
SJI will consider whether the applicant is a State or local court, a 
national court support or education organization, a non-court unit of 
government, or other type of entity eligible to receive grants under 
SJI's enabling legislation; the availability of financial assistance 
from other sources for the project; the diversity of subject matter; 
geographic diversity; the level and nature of the match that would be 
provided; reasonableness of the proposed budget; the extent to which 
the proposed project would also benefit the Federal courts or help 
State or local courts enforce Federal constitutional and legislative 
requirements; and the level of appropriations available to SJI in the 
current year and the amount expected to be available in succeeding 
fiscal years, when determining which projects to support.
    2. Project Grant Applications. Project grant applications will be 
rated based on the criteria set forth below:
     Soundness of the methodology.
     Demonstration of need for the project.
     Appropriateness of the proposed evaluation design.
     If applicable, the key findings and recommendations of the 
most recent evaluation and the proposed responses to those findings and 
recommendations.
     Applicant's management plan and organizational 
capabilities.
     Qualifications of the project's staff.
     Products and benefits resulting from the project, 
including the extent to which the project will have long-term benefits 
for State courts across the nation.
     Degree to which the findings, procedures, training, 
technology, or other results of the project can be transferred to other 
jurisdictions.
     Reasonableness of the proposed budget.
     Demonstration of cooperation and support of other agencies 
that may be affected by the project.
    3. Technical Assistance (TA) Grant Applications. TA grant 
applications will be rated based on the following criteria:
     Whether the assistance would address a critical need of 
the applicant.
     Soundness of the technical assistance approach to the 
problem.
     Qualifications of the consultant(s) to be hired or the 
specific criteria that will be used to select the consultant(s).
     Commitment of the court or association to act on the 
consultant's recommendations.
     Reasonableness of the proposed budget.
    4. Curriculum Adaptation and Training (CAT) Grant Applications. CAT 
grant applications will be rated based on the following criteria:
     Goals and objectives of the proposed project.
     How the training would address a critical need of the 
court or association.
     Need for outside funding to support the program.

[[Page 58988]]

     Soundness of the approach in achieving the project's 
educational or training objectives.
     Integration of distance learning and technology in project 
design and delivery.
     Qualifications of the trainer(s) to be hired or the 
specific criteria that will be used to select the trainer(s) (training 
project only).
     Likelihood of effective implementation and integration of 
the modified curriculum into the State or local jurisdiction's ongoing 
educational programming (curriculum adaptation project only).
     Commitment of the court or association to the training 
program (training project only).
     Expressions of interest by judges and/or court personnel, 
as demonstrated by letters of support.
    5. Strategic Initiative Grant (SIG) Applications. SIG applications 
will be rated based on the following criteria:
     Goals and objectives of the proposed project.
     Demonstration of need for the project.
     Degree to which the project addresses a current national 
court issue.
     Level of innovation in addressing the identified need.
     Potential impact on the court community.
     Qualifications of the consultant(s) engaged to manage the 
project.
    6. Review Process. SJI reviews the application to make sure that 
the information presented is reasonable, understandable, measurable, 
and achievable, as well as consistent with this guideline. Applications 
must meet basic minimum requirements. Although specific requirements 
may vary by grant type, the following are common requirements 
applicable to all SJI grant applications:
     Must be submitted by an eligible type of applicant.
     Must request funding within funding constraints of each 
grant type (if applicable).
     Must be within statutorily allowable expenditures.
     Must include all required forms and documents.
     The SJI Board of Directors reviews all applications and 
makes final funding decisions. The decision to fund a project is solely 
that of the SJI Board of Directors.
    7. Notification of SJI Board of Directors Decision. The Chairman of 
the Board signs grant awards on behalf of SJI. SJI will notify 
applicants regarding the SJI Board of Directors' decisions to award, 
defer, or deny their respective applications. If requested, SJI conveys 
the key issues and questions that arose during the review process. A 
decision by the SJI Board of Directors to deny an application may not 
be appealed, but it does not prohibit resubmission of a proposal in a 
subsequent funding cycle.
    8. Response to Notification of Award. Grantees have 30 days from 
the date they were notified about their award to respond to any 
revisions requested by the SJI Board of Directors. If the requested 
revisions (or a reasonable schedule for submitting such revisions) have 
not been submitted to SJI within 30 days after notification, the award 
may be rescinded, and the application presented to the SJI Board of 
Directors for reconsideration. Special conditions, in the form of 
incentives or sanctions, may also be used in other situations.

VI. How To Apply

    Applicants must use the SJI GMS to submit all applications and 
post-award documents. SJI urges applicants to submit applications at 
least 72 hours prior to the application due date in order to allow time 
for the applicant to receive an application acceptance message, and to 
correct in a timely fashion any problems that may arise, such as 
missing or incomplete forms. Files must be in .doc, .docx, .xls, .xlsx, 
.pdf, .jpg, or .png format. Individual file size cannot exceed 5 MB.

A. Submission Steps

    Applicants (except for ESP) must register with the SJI GMS to 
submit applications for funding consideration. Below are the basic 
steps for submission:
    1. Access the SJI GMS and complete the information required to 
create an account.
    2. If you already have an account, log in and create a new 
application.
    3. Complete all required forms and upload all required documents:
     Application Form.
     Certificate of State Approval.
     Budget and Budget Narrative.
     Assurances.
     Disclosure of Lobbying Activities.
     Project Abstract.
     Program Narrative.
     Attachments.
    [ssquf] Letters of Support.
    [ssquf] Project Timeline.
    [ssquf] Resumes.
    [ssquf] Indirect Cost Approval.
    [ssquf] Other Attachments.
    4. Certify and submit the application to SJI for review.

VII. Post Award Reporting Requirements

    All required reports and documents must be submitted via the SJI 
GMS.

A. Quarterly Reporting Requirements

    Recipients of SJI funds must submit Quarterly Progress and 
Financial Status Reports within 30 days of the close of each calendar 
quarter (that is, no later than January 30, April 30, July 30, and 
October 30).
    1. Program Progress Reports. Program Progress Reports must include 
a narrative description of project activities during the calendar 
quarter; the relationship between those activities, the task schedule, 
and objectives set forth in the approved application or an approved 
adjustment thereto; any significant problem areas that have developed 
and how they will be resolved; and the activities scheduled during the 
next reporting period. Failure to comply with the requirements of this 
provision could result in the termination of a grantee's award.
    2. Financial Reporting. A Financial Status Report is required from 
all grantees for each active quarter on a calendar-quarter basis. This 
report is due within 30 days after the close of the calendar quarter. 
It is designed to provide financial information relating to SJI funds, 
State and local matching shares, project income, and any other sources 
of funds for the project, as well as information on obligations and 
outlays.

B. Request for Reimbursement of Funds

    Awardees will receive funds on a reimbursable, U.S. Treasury check-
issued or electronic funds transfer (EFT) basis. Upon receipt, review, 
and approval of a Request for Reimbursement by SJI, payment will be 
issued directly to the grantee or its designated fiscal agent. Requests 
for reimbursements, along with the instructions for its preparation, 
and the SF 3881 Automated Clearing House (ACH/Miscellaneous Payment 
Enrollment Form for EFT) are available in the SJI GMS.
    1. Accounting System. Awardees are responsible for establishing and 
maintaining an adequate system of accounting and internal controls and 
for ensuring that an adequate system exists for each of its sub-
grantees and contractors. An acceptable and adequate accounting system:
     Properly accounts for receipt of funds under each grant 
awarded and the expenditure of funds for each grant by category of 
expenditure (including matching contributions and project income).
     Assures that expended funds are applied to the appropriate 
budget category included within the approved grant.

[[Page 58989]]

     Presents and classifies historical costs of the grant as 
required for budgetary and evaluation purposes.
     Provides cost and property controls to assure optimal use 
of grant funds.
     Is integrated with a system of internal controls adequate 
to safeguard the funds and assets covered, check the accuracy and 
reliability of the accounting data, promote operational efficiency, and 
assure conformance with any general or special conditions of the grant.
     Meets the prescribed requirements for periodic financial 
reporting of operations.
     Provides financial data for planning, control, 
measurement, and evaluation of direct and indirect costs.

C. Final Progress Report

    The Final Progress Report should describe the project activities 
during the final calendar quarter of the project and the close-out 
period, including to whom project products have been disseminated; 
provide a summary of activities during the entire project; specify 
whether all the objectives set forth in the approved application or an 
approved adjustment have been met and, if any of the objectives have 
not been met, explain why not; and discuss what, if anything, could 
have been done differently that might have enhanced the impact of the 
project or improved its operation. In addition, grantees are required 
to submit electronic copies of the final products related to the 
project (e.g., reports, curriculum, etc.). These reporting requirements 
apply at the conclusion of every grant.

VIII. Compliance Requirements

A. Advocacy

    No funds made available by SJI may be used to support or conduct 
training programs for the purpose of advocating particular nonjudicial 
public policies or encouraging nonjudicial political activities (42 
U.S.C. 10706(b)).

B. Approval of Key Staff

    If the qualifications of an employee or consultant assigned to a 
key project staff position are not adequately described in the 
application or if there is a change of a person assigned to such a 
position, the recipient must submit a description of the qualifications 
of the newly assigned person to SJI. Prior written approval of the 
qualifications of the new person assigned to a key staff position must 
be received from SJI before the salary or consulting fee of that person 
and associated costs may be paid or reimbursed from grant funds.

C. Audit

    Recipients of SJI grants must provide for an annual fiscal audit, 
which includes an opinion on whether the financial statements of the 
grantee present fairly its financial position and its financial 
operations in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles. 
If requested, a copy of the audit report must be made available 
electronically to SJI.

D. Budget Revisions

    Budget revisions among direct cost categories that: (1) Transfer 
grant funds to an unbudgeted cost category, or (2) individually or 
cumulatively exceed 5 percent of the approved original budget or the 
most recently approved revised budget require prior SJI approval. Refer 
to section X, Grant Adjustments, of this guideline for additional 
details about the process to modify the project budget.

E. Conflict of Interest

    Personnel and other officials connected with SJI-funded programs 
must adhere to the following requirements:
     Officials or employees of a recipient court or 
organization must not participate personally through decision, 
approval, disapproval, recommendation, the rendering of advice, 
investigation, or otherwise, in any proceeding, application, request 
for a ruling or other determination, contract, grant, cooperative 
agreement, claim, controversy, or other particular matter in which SJI 
funds are used, where, to their knowledge, they or their immediate 
family, partners, organization other than a public agency in which they 
are serving as officer, director, trustee, partner, or employee or any 
person or organization with whom they are negotiating or have any 
arrangement concerning prospective employment, have a financial 
interest.
     In the use of SJI project funds, an official or employee 
of a recipient court or organization must avoid any action which might 
result in or create the appearance of:
    [ssquf] Using an official position for private gain; or
    [ssquf] Affecting adversely the confidence of the public in the 
integrity of the SJI program.
     Requests for proposals or invitations for bids issued by a 
recipient of SJI funds or a sub-grantee or subcontractor will provide 
notice to prospective bidders that the contractors who develop or draft 
specifications, requirements, statements of work, and/or requests for 
proposals for a proposed procurement will be excluded from bidding on 
or submitting a proposal to compete for the award of such procurement.

F. Inventions and Patents

    If any patentable items, patent rights, processes, or inventions 
are produced during the course of SJI-sponsored work, such fact must be 
promptly and fully reported to SJI. Unless there is a prior agreement 
between the grantee and SJI on the disposition of such items, SJI will 
determine whether protection of the invention or discovery must be 
sought.

G. Lobbying

    Funds awarded to recipients by SJI must not be used, indirectly or 
directly, to influence Executive orders or similar promulgations by 
Federal, State, or local agencies; or to influence the passage or 
defeat of any legislation by Federal, State, or local legislative 
bodies (42 U.S.C. 10706(a)).
    It is the policy of the SJI Board of Directors to award funds only 
to support applications submitted by organizations that would carry out 
the objectives of their applications in an unbiased manner. Consistent 
with this policy and the provisions of 42 U.S.C. 10706, SJI will not 
knowingly award a grant to an applicant that has, directly or through 
an entity that is part of the same organization as the applicant, 
advocated a position before Congress on the specific subject matter of 
the application.

H. Matching Requirements

    All grant recipients are required to provide a match. A match is 
the portion of project costs not borne by SJI. A match includes both 
cash and in-kind contributions. Cash match is the direct outlay of 
funds by the grantee or a third party to support the project. In-kind 
match for State and local courts or other units of government consists 
of contributions of time and/or services of current staff members, new 
employees, space, supplies, etc., made to the project by the grantee or 
others (e.g., advisory board members) working directly on the project. 
Generally, these same items are considered cash matches for 
nongovernmental entities. For nongovernmental entities, federally 
approved indirect cost rate may be used as an in-kind match for that 
portion of the rate that exceeds the limit of permitted charges for 
indirect costs (75 percent of salaries and benefits).
    Under normal circumstances, allowable match may be incurred only 
during the project period. The amount and nature of required match 
depends

[[Page 58990]]

on the type of grant. Refer to section V.C.12, Matching Requirements, 
of this guideline for details by grant type.
    The grantee is responsible for ensuring that the total amount of 
match proposed is contributed. If a proposed contribution is not fully 
met, SJI may reduce the award amount accordingly, to maintain the ratio 
originally provided for in the award agreement. Match should be 
expended at the same rate as SJI funding.
    The SJI Board of Directors looks favorably upon any unrequired 
match contributed by applicants when making grant decisions. The match 
requirement may be waived in exceptionally rare circumstances upon the 
request of the chief justice of the highest court in the State, or the 
highest ranking official in the requesting organization and approval by 
the SJI Board of Directors (42 U.S.C. 10705(d)). The SJI Board of 
Directors encourages all applicants to provide the maximum amount of 
cash and in-kind match possible, even if a waiver is approved. The 
amount and nature of the match are criteria in the grant selection 
process.
    Other Federal department and agency funding may not be used for 
cash match.

I. Nondiscrimination

    No person may, on the basis of race, sex, national origin, 
disability, color, or creed, be excluded from participation in, denied 
the benefits of, or otherwise subjected to discrimination under any 
program or activity supported by SJI funds. Recipients of SJI funds 
must take any measures necessary immediately to effectuate this 
provision.

J. Political Activities

    No recipient may contribute or make available SJI funds, program 
personnel, or equipment to any political party or association or the 
campaign of any candidate for public or party office. Recipients are 
also prohibited from using funds in advocating or opposing any ballot 
measure, initiative, or referendum. Officers and employees of 
recipients must not intentionally identify SJI or recipients with any 
partisan or nonpartisan political activity associated with a political 
party or association or the campaign of any candidate for public or 
party office (42 U.S.C. 10706(a)).

K. Products

    1. Acknowledgment, Logo, and Disclaimer. Recipients of SJI funds 
must acknowledge prominently on all products developed with grant funds 
that support was received from the SJI. The SJI logo must appear on the 
front cover of a written product, or in the opening frames of a 
multimedia product, unless another placement is approved in writing by 
SJI. This includes final products printed or otherwise reproduced 
during the grant period, as well as reprintings or reproductions of 
those materials following the end of the grant period. A camera-ready 
logo sheet is available on SJI's website: https://www.sji.gov/forms/.
    Recipients also must display the following disclaimer on all grant 
products: ``This [document, film, videotape, etc.] was developed under 
[grant/cooperative agreement] number SJI-[insert number] from the State 
Justice Institute. The points of view expressed are those of the 
[author(s), filmmaker(s), etc.] and do not necessarily represent the 
official position or policies of the State Justice Institute.''
    a. Project Grants. In addition to other required grant products and 
reports, recipients must provide a one-page executive summary of the 
project. The summary should include a background on the project, the 
tasks undertaken, and the outcome. In addition, the summary should 
provide the performance metrics that were used during the project, and 
how performance will be measured in the future.
    b. TA Grants. Grantees must submit a final report that explains how 
it intends to act on the consultant's recommendations, as well as a 
copy of the consultant's written report. Both should be submitted in 
electronic format.
    c. CAT Grants. Grantees must submit an electronic version of the 
agenda or schedule, outline of presentations and/or relevant 
instructor's notes; copies of overhead transparencies, Microsoft 
PowerPoint presentations, or other visual aids; exercises, case 
studies, and other background materials; hypotheticals, quizzes, and 
other materials involving the participants; manuals, handbooks, 
conference packets, and evaluation forms; and suggestions for 
replicating the program, including possible faculty or the preferred 
qualifications or experience of those selected as faculty, developed 
under the grant after the grant period, along with a final report that 
includes any evaluation results and explains how the grantee intends to 
present the educational program in the future, as well as the 
consultant's or trainer's report. All items should be submitted in 
electronic format.
    2. Charges for Grant-Related Products/Recovery of Costs. SJI's 
mission is to support improvements in the quality of justice and foster 
innovative, efficient solutions to common issues faced by all courts. 
SJI has recognized and established procedures for supporting research 
and development of grant products (e.g., a report, curriculum, video, 
software, database, or website) through competitive grant awards based 
on the merit reviews of proposed projects. To ensure that all grants 
benefit the entire court community, projects SJI considers worthy of 
support (in whole or in part) are required to be disseminated widely 
and available for public consumption. This includes open-source 
software and interfaces. Costs for development, production, and 
dissemination are allowable as direct costs to SJI.
    Applicants should disclose their intent to sell grant-related 
products in the application. Grantees must obtain SJI's prior written 
approval of their plans to recover project costs through the sale of 
grant products. Written requests to recover costs ordinarily should be 
received during the grant period and should specify the nature and 
extent of the costs to be recouped, the reason that such costs were not 
budgeted (if the rationale was not disclosed in the approved 
application), the number of copies to be sold, the intended audience 
for the products to be sold, and the proposed sale price. If the 
product is to be sold for more than $25, the written request should 
also include a detailed itemization of costs that will be recovered and 
a certification that the costs were not supported by either SJI grant 
funds or grantee matching contributions.
    In the event that the sale of grant products results in revenues 
that exceed the costs to develop, produce, and disseminate the product, 
the revenue must continue to be used for the authorized purposes of 
SJI-funded project or other purposes consistent with the State Justice 
Institute Act that have been approved by SJI.

L. Copyrights

    Except as otherwise provided in the terms and conditions of a SJI 
award, a recipient is free to copyright any books, publications, or 
other copyrightable materials developed in the course of an SJI-
supported project, SJI must reserve a royalty-free, nonexclusive, and 
irrevocable right to reproduce, publish, or otherwise use, and to 
authorize others to use, the materials for purposes consistent with the 
State Justice Institute Act.

M. Due Date

    All products and, for TA and CAT grants, consultant and/or trainer 
reports are to be completed and distributed not later than the end of 
the award period,

[[Page 58991]]

not the 90-day closeout period. The 90-day closeout period is intended 
only for grantee final reporting and to liquidate obligations.

N. Distribution

    In addition to the distribution specified in the grant application, 
grantees must send an electronic version of all products in HTML or PDF 
format to SJI.

O. Original Material

    All products prepared as the result of SJI-supported projects must 
be originally developed material unless otherwise specified in the 
award documents. Material not originally developed that is included in 
such products must be properly identified, whether the material is in a 
verbatim or extensive paraphrase format.

P. Prohibition Against Litigation Support

    No funds made available by SJI may be used directly or indirectly 
to support legal assistance to parties in litigation, including cases 
involving capital punishment.

Q. Reporting Requirements

    All reports must be submitted via the SJI GMS as detailed below:
    1. Quarterly Progress and Financial Status Reports. Recipients of 
SJI funds must submit Quarterly Progress and Financial Status Reports 
within 30 days of the close of each calendar quarter (that is, no later 
than January 30, April 30, July 30, and October 30). The Quarterly 
Progress Reports must include a narrative description of project 
activities during the calendar quarter; the relationship between those 
activities, the task schedule, and objectives set forth in the approved 
application or an approved adjustment thereto; any significant problem 
areas that have developed and how they will be resolved; and the 
activities scheduled during the next reporting period. Failure to 
comply with the requirements of this provision could result in the 
termination of a grantee's award.
    2. Quarterly Financial Reporting. The quarterly financial report 
must be submitted in accordance with section VII.A.2, Financial 
Reporting, of this guideline. A final project Progress Report and 
Financial Status Report must be submitted within 90 days after the end 
of the grant period.

R. Research

    1. Availability of Research Data for Secondary Analysis. Upon 
request, grantees must make available for secondary analysis backup 
files containing research and evaluation data collected under a SJI 
grant and the accompanying code manual. Grantees may recover the actual 
cost of duplicating and mailing, or otherwise transmitting, the data 
set and manual from the person or organization requesting the data. 
Grantees may provide the requested data set in the format in which it 
was created and analyzed.
    2. Confidentiality of Information. Except as provided by Federal 
law other than the State Justice Institute Act, no recipient of 
financial assistance from SJI may use or reveal any research or 
statistical information furnished under the Act by any person and 
identifiable to any specific private person for any purpose other than 
the purpose for which the information was obtained. Such information 
and copies thereof will be immune from legal process and must not, 
without the consent of the person furnishing such information, be 
admitted as evidence or used for any purpose in any action, suit, or 
other judicial, legislative, or administrative proceedings.
    3. Human Subject Protection. Human subjects are defined as 
individuals who are participants in an experimental procedure or who 
are asked to provide information about themselves, their attitudes, 
feelings, opinions, and/or experiences through an interview, 
questionnaire, or other data collection technique. All research 
involving human subjects must be conducted with the informed consent of 
those subjects and in a manner that will ensure their privacy and 
freedom from risk or harm and the protection of persons who are not 
subjects of the research but would be affected by it--unless such 
procedures and safeguards would make the research impractical. In such 
instances, SJI must approve procedures designed by the grantee to 
provide human subjects with relevant information about the research 
after their involvement and minimize or eliminate risk or harm to those 
subjects due to their participation.
    4. Prohibited Uses of SJI Funds. To ensure that SJI funds are used 
to supplement and improve the operation of State courts, rather than to 
support basic court services, SJI funds must not be used for the 
following purposes:
     To supplant State or local funds supporting a program or 
activity (such as paying the salary of court employees who would be 
performing their normal duties as part of the project or paying rent 
for space which is part of the court's normal operations).
     To construct court facilities or structures.
     Solely to purchase equipment.
    Examples of basic court services include:

 Hiring of personnel
 Purchase and/or maintenance of equipment
 Purchase of software and/or licenses
 Purchase of internet access or service
 Supplies to support the day-to-day operations of courts

    The final determination of what constitutes basic court services is 
made by SJI and is not negotiable.
    Meals and refreshments are generally not allowable costs unless the 
applicant or grantee obtains prior written approval from SJI. This 
applies to all awards, including contracts, grants, and cooperative 
agreements. In general, SJI may approve such costs only in very rare 
instances where:
     Sustenance is not otherwise available (e.g., extremely 
remote areas);
     The size of the event and nearby food and/or beverage 
vendors would make it impractical to not provide meals and/or 
refreshments; and/or
     A special presentation at a conference requires a plenary 
address where there is no other time for sustenance to be obtained.
    Trinkets (items such as hats, mugs, portfolios, t-shirts, coins, 
gift bags, gift cards, etc.) may not be purchased with SJI grant 
funding.
    5. Suspension or Termination of Funding. After providing a 
recipient reasonable notice and opportunity to submit written 
documentation demonstrating why fund termination or suspension should 
not occur, SJI may terminate or suspend funding of a project that fails 
to comply substantially with the Act, the Grant Guideline, or the terms 
and conditions of the award (42 U.S.C. 10708(a)).
    7. Title to Property. At the conclusion of the project, title to 
all expendable and nonexpendable personal property purchased with SJI 
funds must vest in the recipient court, organization, or individual 
that purchased the property if certification is made to and approved by 
SJI that the property will continue to be used for the authorized 
purposes of the SJI-funded project or other purposes consistent with 
the State Justice Institute Act. If such certification is not made or 
SJI disapproves of such certification, title to all such property with 
an aggregate or individual value of $1,000 or more must vest in SJI, 
which will direct the disposition of the property.

IX. Financial Requirements

    The purpose of this section is to establish accounting system

[[Page 58992]]

requirements and offer guidance on procedures to assist all grantees, 
sub-grantees, contractors, and other organizations in:
     Complying with the statutory requirements for the award, 
disbursement, and accounting of funds.
     Complying with regulatory requirements of SJI for the 
financial management and disposition of funds.
     Generating financial data to be used in planning, 
managing, and controlling projects.
     Facilitating an effective audit of funded programs and 
projects.

A. Supervision and Monitoring Responsibilities

    All grantees receiving awards from SJI are responsible for the 
management and fiscal control of all funds. Responsibilities include 
accounting for receipts and expenditures, maintaining adequate 
financial records, and refunding expenditures disallowed by audits. If 
the project includes subawards, the grantees responsibilities also 
include:
    1. Reviewing Financial Operations. The grantee or its designee 
should be familiar with, and periodically monitor, its sub-grantee's 
financial operations, records system, and procedures. Particular 
attention should be directed to the maintenance of current financial 
data.
    2. Recording Financial Activities. The sub-grantee's grant award or 
contract obligation, as well as cash advances and other financial 
activities, should be recorded in the financial records of the grantee 
or its designee in summary form. Sub-grantee expenditures should be 
recorded on the books of the State supreme court or evidenced by report 
forms duly filed by the sub-grantee. Matching contributions provided by 
sub-grantees should likewise be recorded, as should any project income 
resulting from program operations.
    3. Budgeting and Budget Review. The grantee or its designee should 
ensure that each sub-grantee prepares an adequate budget as the basis 
for its award commitment. The State supreme court should maintain the 
details of each project budget on file.
    4. Accounting for Match. The grantee or its designee will ensure 
that sub-grantees comply with the match requirements specified in this 
guideline.
    5. Audit Requirement. The grantee or its designee is required to 
ensure that sub-grantees meet the necessary audit requirements set 
forth by SJI.
    6. Reporting Irregularities. The grantee, its designees, and its 
sub-grantees are responsible for promptly reporting to SJI the nature 
and circumstances surrounding any financial irregularities discovered.

B. Accounting System

    The grantee is responsible for establishing and maintaining an 
adequate system of accounting and internal controls, and for ensuring 
that an adequate system exists for each of its sub-grantees and 
contractors. An acceptable and adequate accounting system:
     Properly accounts for receipt of funds under each grant 
awarded and the expenditure of funds for each grant by category of 
expenditure, including matching contributions and project income.
     Assures that expended funds are applied to the appropriate 
budget category included within the approved grant.
     Presents and classifies historical costs of the grant as 
required for budgetary and evaluation purposes.
     Provides cost and property controls to assure optimal use 
of grant funds.
     Is integrated with a system of internal controls adequate 
to safeguard the funds and assets covered, check the accuracy and 
reliability of the accounting data, promote operational efficiency, and 
assure conformance with any general or special conditions of the grant.
     Meets the prescribed requirements for periodic financial 
reporting of operations.
     Provides financial data for planning, control, 
measurement, and evaluation of direct and indirect costs.

C. Total Cost Budgeting and Accounting

    Accounting for all funds awarded by SJI must be structured and 
executed on a total-project-cost basis. That is, total project costs, 
including SJI funds, State and local matching shares, and any other 
fund sources included in the approved project budget, serve as the 
foundation for fiscal administration and accounting. Grant applications 
and financial reports require budget and cost estimates based on total 
costs.
    1. Timing of Matching Contributions. Matching contributions should 
be applied at the same time as the obligation of SJI funds. Ordinarily, 
the full matching share must be obligated during the award period; 
however, with the written permission of SJI, contributions made 
following approval of the grant by the SJI Board of Directors but 
before the beginning of the grant may be counted as match. If a 
proposed cash or in-kind match is not fully met, SJI may reduce the 
award amount accordingly to maintain the ratio of grant funds to 
matching funds stated in the award agreement.
    2. Records for Match. All grantees must maintain records that 
clearly show the source, amount, and timing of all matching 
contributions. In addition, if a project has included, within its 
approved budget, contributions that exceed the required matching 
portion, the grantee must maintain records of those contributions in 
the same manner as it does SJI funds and required matching shares. For 
all grants made to State and local courts, the State supreme court has 
primary responsibility for grantee/sub-grantee compliance with the 
requirements of this section.
    3. Maintenance and Retention of Records. All financial records, 
including supporting documents, statistical records, and all other 
information pertinent to grants, sub-grants, cooperative agreements, or 
contracts under grants, must be retained by each organization 
participating in a project for at least 3 years for purposes of 
examination and audit. State supreme courts may impose record retention 
and maintenance requirements in addition to those prescribed in this 
section.
    4. Coverage. The retention requirement extends to books of original 
entry, source documents supporting accounting transactions, the general 
ledger, subsidiary ledgers, personnel and payroll records, canceled 
checks, and related documents and records. Source documents include 
copies of all grant and sub-grant awards, applications, and required 
grantee/sub-grantee financial and narrative reports. Personnel and 
payroll records must include the time and attendance reports for all 
individuals reimbursed under a grant, sub-grant, or contract, whether 
they are employed full-time or part-time. Time and effort reports are 
required for consultants.
    5. Retention Period. The 3-year retention period starts from the 
date of the submission of the final expenditure report.
    6. Maintenance. Grantees and sub-grantees are expected to see that 
records of different fiscal years are separately identified and 
maintained so that requested information can be readily located. 
Grantees and sub-grantees are also obligated to protect records 
adequately against fire or other damage. When records are stored away 
from the grantee's or sub-grantee's principal office, a written index 
of the location of stored records should be on hand, and ready access 
should be assured.
    7. Access. Grantees and sub-grantees must give any authorized 
representative of SJI access to and the right to examine

[[Page 58993]]

all records, books, papers, and documents related to a SJI grant.
    8. Project-Related Income. Records of the receipt and disposition 
of project-related income must be maintained by the grantee in the same 
manner as required for the project funds that gave rise to the income 
and must be reported to SJI (see section VII.A.2, Financial Reporting, 
of this guideline). The policies governing the disposition of the 
various types of project-related income are listed below.
    a. Interest. A State and any agency or instrumentality of a State, 
including institutions of higher education and hospitals, will not be 
held accountable for interest earned on advances of project funds. When 
funds are awarded to sub-grantees through a State, the sub-grantees are 
not held accountable for interest earned on advances of project funds. 
Local units of government and nonprofit organizations that are grantees 
must refund any interest earned. Grantees must ensure minimum balances 
in their respective grant cash accounts.
    b. Royalties. The grantee or sub-grantee may retain all royalties 
received from copyrights or other works developed under projects or 
from patents and inventions unless the terms and conditions of the 
grant provide otherwise.
    c. Registration and Tuition Fees. Registration and tuition fees may 
be considered as cash match with prior written approval from SJI. 
Estimates of registration and tuition fees, and any expenses to be 
offset by the fees, should be included in the application budget forms 
and narrative.
    d. Income from the Sale of Grant Products. If the sale of products 
occurs during the project period, the income may be treated as cash 
match with the prior written approval of SJI. The costs and income 
generated by the sales must be reported on the Quarterly Progress 
Financial Status Reports and documented in an auditable manner. 
Whenever possible, the intent to sell a product should be disclosed in 
the application or reported to SJI in writing once a decision to sell 
products has been made. The grantee must request approval to recover 
its product development, reproduction, and dissemination costs (see 
section VIII.K.2, Charges for Grant-Related Products/Recovery of Costs, 
of this guideline).
    e. Other. Other project income will be treated in accordance with 
disposition instructions set forth in the grant's terms and conditions.

D. Payments and Financial Reporting Requirements

    The procedures and regulations set forth below are applicable to 
all SJI grant funds and grantees.
    1. Request for Reimbursement of Funds. Grantees will receive funds 
on a reimbursable, U.S. Department of the Treasury check-issued or EFT 
basis. Upon receipt, review, and approval of a Request for 
Reimbursement (Form R) by SJI, payment will be issued directly to the 
grantee or its designated fiscal agent. The Form R, along with the 
instructions for its preparation, and the SF 3881 Automated Clearing 
House (ACH/Miscellaneous Payment Enrollment Form for EFT), are 
available for download and submission in the SJI GMS.
    2. Financial Reporting.
    a. General Requirements. To obtain financial information concerning 
the use of funds, SJI requires that grantees/sub-grantees submit timely 
reports for review.
    b. Due Dates and Contents. A Financial Status Report is required 
from all grantees for each active quarter on a calendar-quarter basis. 
This report is due within 30 days after the close of the calendar 
quarter. It is designed to provide financial information relating to 
SJI funds, State and local matching shares, project income, and any 
other sources of funds for the project, as well as information on 
obligations and outlays. The Financial Status Report (Form F), along 
with instructions, is accessible in the SJI GMS. If a grantee requests 
substantial payment for a project prior to the completion of a given 
quarter, SJI may request a brief summary of the amount requested, by 
object class, to support the Request for Reimbursement.
    a. Consequences of Noncompliance with Submission Requirement. 
Failure of the grantee to submit required financial and progress 
reports may result in suspension or termination of grant reimbursement.

E. Allowability of Costs

1. Costs Requiring Prior Approval
    a. Pre-agreement Costs. The written prior approval of SJI is 
required for costs considered necessary but which occur prior to the 
start date of the project period.
    b. Equipment. Grant funds may be used to purchase or lease only 
that equipment essential to accomplishing the goals and objectives of 
the project. The written prior approval of SJI is required when: (1) 
The amount of automated data processing equipment to be purchased or 
leased exceeds $10,000 or (2) the software to be purchased exceeds 
$3,000.
    c. Consultants. The written prior approval of SJI is required when 
the rate of compensation to be paid to a consultant exceeds $800 a day. 
SJI funds may not be used to pay a consultant more than $1,100 per day.
    d. Budget Revisions. Budget revisions among direct-cost categories 
that: (1) Transfer grant funds to an unbudgeted cost category or (2) 
individually or cumulatively exceed 5 percent of the approved original 
budget or the most recently approved revised budget require prior SJI 
approval.
    2. Travel Costs. Transportation and per diem rates must comply with 
the policies of the grantee. If the grantee does not have an 
established written travel policy, then travel rates must be consistent 
with those established by the U.S. General Services Administration. 
Grant funds may not be used to cover the transportation or per diem 
costs of a member of a national organization to attend an annual or 
other regular meeting, or conference of that organization.
    3. Indirect Costs. Indirect costs are only applicable to 
organizations that are not State courts or government agencies. These 
are costs of an organization that are not readily assignable to a 
particular project but are necessary to the operation of the 
organization and the performance of the project. The cost of operating 
and maintaining facilities, depreciation, and administrative salaries 
are examples of the types of costs that are usually treated as indirect 
costs. Although SJI's policy requires all costs to be budgeted 
directly, it will accept indirect costs if a grantee has an indirect 
cost rate approved by a Federal agency. However, recoverable indirect 
costs are limited to no more than 75 percent of a grantee's direct 
personnel costs (salaries plus fringe benefits).
    a. Approved Plan Available.
     A copy of an indirect cost rate agreement or allocation 
plan approved for a grantee during the preceding 2 years by any Federal 
granting agency on the basis of allocation methods substantially in 
accord with those set forth in the applicable cost circulars must be 
submitted to SJI.
     Where flat rates are accepted in lieu of actual, indirect 
costs, grantees may not also charge expenses normally included in 
overhead pools (e.g., accounting services, legal services, building 
occupancy and maintenance, etc.) as direct costs.

F. Audit Requirements

    1. Implementation. Grantees must provide for an annual fiscal 
audit. This

[[Page 58994]]

requirement also applies to a State or local court receiving a sub-
grant from the State supreme court. Audits conducted using generally 
accepted auditing standards in the United States will satisfy the 
requirement for an annual fiscal audit. The audit must be conducted by 
an independent Certified Public Accountant, or a State or local agency 
authorized to audit government agencies. The audit report must be made 
available to SJI electronically, if requested.
    2. Resolution and Clearance of Audit Reports. Timely action on 
recommendations by responsible management officials is an integral part 
of the effectiveness of an audit. Each grantee must have policies and 
procedures for acting on audit recommendations by designating officials 
responsible for:
     Follow-up.
     Maintaining a record of the actions taken on 
recommendations and time schedules.
     Responding to and acting on audit recommendations.
     Submitting periodic reports to SJI on recommendations and 
actions taken.
    3. Consequences of Non-Resolution of Audit Issues. Ordinarily, SJI 
will not make a subsequent grant award to an applicant that has an 
unresolved audit report involving SJI awards. Failure of the grantee to 
resolve audit questions may also result in the suspension or 
termination of payments for active SJI grants to that organization.

G. Closeout of Grants

    1. Grantee Closeout Requirements. Within 90 days after the end date 
of the grant or any approved extension thereof, the following documents 
must be submitted to SJI by grantees:
    a. Financial Status Report. The final report of expenditures must 
have no unliquidated obligations and must indicate the exact balance of 
unobligated funds. Any unobligated or unexpended funds will be de-
obligated from the award by SJI. Final payment requests for obligations 
incurred during the award period must be submitted to SJI prior to the 
end of the 90-day closeout period.
    b. Final Progress Report. This report should describe the project 
activities during the final calendar quarter of the project and the 
closeout period, including to whom project products have been 
disseminated; provide a summary of activities during the entire 
project; specify whether all the objectives set forth in the approved 
application or an approved adjustment have been met and, if any of the 
objectives have not been met, explain why not; and discuss what, if 
anything, could have been done differently that might have enhanced the 
impact of the project or improved its operation. These reporting 
requirements apply at the conclusion of every grant.
    2. Extension of Closeout Period. Upon the written request of the 
grantee, SJI may extend the closeout period to assure completion of the 
grantee's closeout requirements. Requests for an extension must be 
submitted at least 14 days before the end of the closeout period and 
must explain why the extension is necessary, and what steps will be 
taken to assure that all the grantee's responsibilities will be met by 
the end of the extension period. Extensions must be submitted via the 
SJI GMS as Grant Adjustments.

X. Grant Adjustments

    All requests for programmatic or budgetary adjustments requiring 
SJI approval must be submitted by the project director in a timely 
manner (ordinarily 30 days prior to the implementation of the 
adjustment being requested). All requests for changes from the approved 
application will be carefully reviewed for both consistency with this 
guideline and the enhancement of grant goals and objectives. Failure to 
submit adjustments in a timely manner may result in the termination of 
a grantee's award.

A. Grant Adjustments Requiring Prior Written Approval

    The following Grant Adjustments require the prior written approval 
of SJI:
     Budget revisions among direct cost categories that (1) 
transfer grant funds to an unbudgeted cost category or (2) individually 
or cumulatively exceed 5 percent of the approved original budget or the 
most recently approved revised budget.
     A change in the scope of work to be performed or the 
objectives of the project.
     A change in the project site.
     A change in the project period, such as an extension of 
the grant period or extension of the final financial or progress report 
deadline.
     Satisfaction of special conditions, if required.
     A change in or temporary absence of the project director.
     The assignment of an employee or consultant to a key staff 
position whose qualifications were not described in the application, or 
a change of a person assigned to a key project staff position.
     A change in or temporary absence of the person responsible 
for managing and reporting on the grant's finances.
     A change in the name of the grantee organization.
     A transfer or contracting out of grant-supported 
activities.
     A transfer of the grant to another recipient.
     Pre-agreement costs.
     The purchase of ADA equipment and software.
     Consultant rates.
     A change in the nature or number of the products to be 
prepared or the way a product would be distributed.

B. Requests for Grant Adjustments

    All grantees must promptly notify SJI, in writing, of events or 
proposed changes that may require adjustments to the approved project 
design. In requesting an adjustment, the grantee must set forth the 
reasons and basis for the proposed adjustment and any other information 
the program manager determines would help SJI's review. All requests 
for Grant Adjustments must be submitted via the SJI GMS.

C. Notification of Approval or Disapproval

    If the request is approved, the grantee will be sent a Grant 
Adjustment signed by the SJI Executive Director. If the request is 
denied, the grantee will be sent a written explanation of the reasons 
for the denial.

D. Changes in the Scope of the Grant

    Major changes in scope, duration, training methodology, or other 
significant areas must be approved in advance by SJI. A grantee may 
make minor changes in methodology, approach, or other aspects of the 
grant to expedite achievement of the grant's objectives with subsequent 
notification to SJI.

E. Date Changes

    A request to change or extend the grant period must be made at 
least 30 days in advance of the end date of the grant. A revised task 
plan should accompany a request for an extension of the grant period, 
along with a revised budget if shifts among budget categories will be 
needed. A request to change or extend the deadline for the final 
financial report or final progress report must be made at least 14 days 
in advance of the report deadline.

F. Temporary Absence of the Project Director

    Whenever an absence of the project director is expected to exceed a 
continuous period of 1 month, the plans for the conduct of the project 
director's duties during such absence must be approved in advance by 
SJI. This

[[Page 58995]]

information must be provided in a letter signed by an authorized 
representative of the grantee or sub-grantee at least 30 days before 
the departure of the project director or as soon as it is known that 
the project director will be absent. The grant may be terminated if 
arrangements are not approved in advance by SJI.

G. Withdrawal of or Change in Project Director

    If the project director relinquishes or expects to relinquish 
active direction of the project, SJI must be notified immediately. In 
such cases, if the grantee or sub-grantee wishes to terminate the 
project, SJI will forward procedural instructions upon notification of 
such intent. If the grantee wishes to continue the project under the 
direction of another individual, a statement of the candidate's 
qualifications should be sent to SJI for review and approval. The grant 
may be terminated if the qualifications of the proposed individual are 
not approved in advance by SJI.

H. Transferring or Contracting Out of Grant-Supported Activities

    No principal activity of a grant-supported project may be 
transferred or contracted out to another organization without specific 
prior approval by SJI. All such arrangements must be formalized in a 
contract or other written agreement between the parties involved. 
Copies of the proposed contract or agreement must be submitted for 
prior approval to SJI at the earliest possible time. The contract or 
agreement must state, at a minimum, the activities to be performed, the 
time schedule, the policies and procedures to be followed, the dollar 
limitation of the agreement, and the cost principles to be followed in 
determining what costs, both direct and indirect, will be allowed. The 
contract or other written agreement must not affect the grantee's 
overall responsibility for the direction of the project and 
accountability to SJI.

State Justice Institute Board of Directors

Hon. John Minton (Chair), Chief Justice, Supreme Court of Kentucky, 
Frankfort, KY
Daniel Becker (Vice Chair), State Court Administrator (ret.), Utah 
Administrative Office of the Courts, Salt Lake City, UT
Hon. Gayle A. Nachtigal (Secretary), Circuit Court Judge (ret.), 
Washington County Circuit Court, Hillsboro, OR
Hon. David Brewer (Treasurer), Justice (ret.), Supreme Court of Oregon, 
Salem, OR
Hon. Jonathan Lippman, Chief Judge of the State of New York (ret.); Of 
Counsel, Latham & Watkins, LLP, New York, NY
Hon. Chase Rogers, Chief Justice (ret.), Supreme Court of Connecticut; 
Partner, Day Pitney, LLP, Hartford, CT
Hon. Wilfredo Martinez, Senior Judge, Ninth Judicial Circuit of 
Florida, Orlando, FL
Hon. Hernan D. Vera, Judge, Los Angeles County Superior Court, Monterey 
Park, CA
Marsha J. Rabiteau, President & CEO, Center for Human Trafficking Court 
Solutions, Bloomfield, CT
Isabel Framer, President, Language Access Consultants LLC, Copley, OH
Jonathan D. Mattiello, Executive Director (ex officio)

Jonathan D. Mattiello,
Executive Director.
[FR Doc. 2021-23227 Filed 10-22-21; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 6820-SC-P