National Park Service – Chesapeake Bay Office - Fiscal Year 2019 Financial Assistance Program
The National Park Service – Chesapeake Bay Office connects people to the natural and cultural heritage of the Chesapeake Bay watershed through the Chesapeake Bay Gateways and Watertrails Network and supports efforts to implement the Chesapeake Bay Watershed Agreement.
The NPS Chesapeake Office provides technical and financial assistance to state and local agencies, tribes and private sector organizations in the Chesapeake Bay watershed under the Chesapeake Bay Initiative Act of 1998. Assistance is provided for work, programs and projects that further one of the following:
- Identify, conserve, restore, and interpret natural, recreational, historical, and cultural resources within the Chesapeake Bay Watershed;
- identify and utilize the collective resources as Chesapeake Bay Gateway sites for enhancing public education of and access to the Chesapeake Bay;
- link the Chesapeake Bay Gateways sites with trails, tour roads, scenic byways, and other connections;
- develop and establish Chesapeake Bay watertrails comprising water routes and connections to sites and other land resources within the Chesapeake Bay Watershed; and
- create a network of Chesapeake Bay Gateways sites and Chesapeake Bay watertrails.
In addition to statutory direction, NPS Chesapeake technical and financial assistance is informed by additional plans and guidance, including but not limited to:
- Chesapeake Bay Watershed Agreement implementing management strategies and work plans, including the Chesapeake Bay Watershed Public Access Plan
- The Chesapeake Bay Gateways Network Framework and various other planning documents, including trail comprehensive management plans and segment plans
- The Secretary of the Interior’s Priorities
To advance these, the NPS collaborates with partners to increase access to the Chesapeake Bay and tributary rivers, to conserve important landscapes and resources, to promote tourism and local economies, to engage youth in meaningful work and placed-based education, to improve recreational opportunities, and to interpret the natural and cultural resources of the Chesapeake region.
FISCAL YEAR 2019 PROGRAM
The financial assistance program for fiscal year 2019 represents a transitional period. In recent fiscal years the program focused on advancing the Captain John Smith Chesapeake National Historic Trail as a major priority. Management of the trail was transferred from the NPS Chesapeake Office to Colonial National Historical Park in mid-2018. In 2019, financial assistance is no longer viewed and prioritized primarily through the trail focus. Rather, fiscal year 2019 financial assistance emphasizes standing priorities implementing the Chesapeake Bay Initiative Act. These include:
Planning, design and implementation of interpretation, media, visitor services, educational programming and stewardship associated with natural and cultural resources at strategic hubs and visitor contact stations in the Chesapeake Bay watershed.
Educational programming (especially on-water programming) focused on Chesapeake natural and cultural resources along the along the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries.
Gateways Network-wide support functions such as:
public engagement in conservation, recreation, and resource stewardship through the mobile Roving Ranger and related programs offered at partner sites;
increased visibility of the Chesapeake’s special places through enhancement of Find Your Chesapeake and related web media; and
training, technical assistance and resources for Network partners.
Local, state, private, and federal collaboration implementing Chesapeake Bay Watershed Agreement outcomes for land conservation, public access, environmental education and stewardship.
Implementation of new water access sites along the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries.
CRITERIA FOR SELECTING PROJECTS
The proposed recipient must be a state or local government, local community, or nonprofit organization.
The proposed project must be within the Chesapeake Bay watershed.
NPS Chesapeake technical and financial assistance strategically supports projects and programs that meet DOI’s key responsibilities in the Chesapeake Bay watershed. The Chesapeake Bay Initiative Act authorizes the NPS to: identify, conserve, restore, and interpret natural, recreational, historical, and cultural resources within the Chesapeake Bay Watershed; identify and utilize the collective resources sites for enhancing public education of and access to the Chesapeake Bay; link sites with trails, tour roads, scenic byways, and other connections; develop and establish watertrails comprising water routes and connections to sites and other land resources within the Chesapeake Bay Watershed; and create a network of sites and watertrails.
The proposed project must be consistent with the Secretary of the Interior’s Priorities.
During FY19, the NPS Chesapeake Bay Office is working with the following types of partners toward financial assistance awards:
Partners with existing master or multi-year cooperative agreements designed to achieve one or more of the priorities noted above;
Gateways Network partners at strategic hubs and visitor contact stations;
Partners who received prior financial assistance awards to plan public access site development which is now ready for construction.
AWARDS AND AWARD PROCESS
Potential applicants must contact NPS - Chesapeake Bay Office staff by February 1 to discuss your project in advance of submitting an application. NPS - Chesapeake Bay Office staff may be reached at 410-260-2478 for consultation.
Applicants must then be prepared to submit a Scope of Work – Task List and Schedule and a Detailed Budget for initial review.
Potential Recipients assist the NPS - Chesapeake Bay Office staff with material needs to submit the proposed projects for DOI Review and Approval.
Concurrent with DOI Review, Potential Recipients collaborate with NPS Chesapeake Bay Office staff to complete award requirements, typically to include:
DUNS Number, SAM Registration and ASAP Registration
SF-424 Application for Federal Assistance; and SF424A, 424B, 424C or 424D as appropriate
A-133 Audit Report or verification of exemption
Certificate of Liability Insurance
Awards are contingent upon DOI approval, internal review, and availability of funds. The Superintendent makes the final decision on funding based on administrative priorities.
Awards typically range from $60,000 to $650,000; average award is $170,000. An award (A) shall not exceed 50 percent of eligible project costs; (B) shall be made on the condition that non-Federal sources, including in-kind contributions of services or materials, provide the remainder of eligible project costs; and (C) shall be made on the condition that not more than 10 percent of all eligible project costs be used for administrative expenses. P.L. 105-312, Title V, as amended by Public Law 115-141, Sec 502(B)(3).
A Cooperative Agreement will be awarded to selected recipients under the authority of 16 USC 1(g). Recipients must be willing and able to promptly produce detailed project implementation and contractual documents as directed by NPS - Chesapeake Bay Office staff to successfully secure funding. Recipients should anticipate that February through May will be the critical period for assembling award documentation and should plan accordingly.
Funds are available from the start date to the end date of the period of performance. Costs incurred either before or after the project period may not be included in the project budget. The project period is set by the requirements of the project but is typically for a time period not to exceed 24 months. Assistance is provided on a reimbursement basis. Award recipients will be required to register in Automated Standard Application for Payments (ASAP). ASAP is a Department of the Treasury system and is the required payment system used by the National Park Service for financial assistance awards.
Potential Recipients will be engaged in the process throughout review and will be provided with updates. Potential Recipients are advised to anticipate a start date of their project period of performance of August 1.