Definitions - N

NAAQS - National Ambient Air Quality Standards

NAPA - National Academy of Public Administration

National Academy of Public Administration (NAPA)
The National Academy of Public Administration is an organization dedicated to improving the performance of governance systems-the network of public institutions, nonprofit organizations, and private companies that now share in the implementation of public policy. As an independent, nonprofit organization chartered by Congress, the Academy responds to specific requests from public agencies and non-government organizations. The Academy also promotes discourse on emerging trends in governance through its Standing Panels and with external funding.

National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS)
Set by the EPA, these standards measure the impacts of three criteria air pollutants: ozone, nitrogen oxides and volatile organic chemicals.

National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA)
NEPA requires federal agencies to prepare in-depth, objective analysis of a proposed action to determine the degree of its environmental impact on the natural and physical environment; alternatives and mitigation that reduce that impact; and the full and candid presentation of the analysis to, and involvement of, the interested and affected public.

National Historic Landmark (NHL)
A district, site, building, structure, or object of national historical significance, designated by the Secretary of the Interior under authority of the Historic Sites Act of 1935 and entered in the National Register of Historic Places.

National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA)
Declares a national policy of historic preservation, including the encouragement of preservation on the state and private levels; authorizes the secretary of the interior to expand and maintain a National Register of Historic Places including properties of state and local as well as national significance; establishes the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation; requires federal agencies to consider the effects of their undertakings on National Register properties and provide the Advisory Council opportunities to comment (§106).

National Leadership Council (NLC)
A NPS leadership group composed of the Director, Deputy Directors, Associate Directors, and Regional Directors.

National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS)
The NMFS is one of the two federal agencies charged with implementing §7 of the Endangered Species Act.

National Park Service (NPS)
A bureau within the United States Department of Interior. The NPS preserves unimpaired the natural and cultural resources and values of the national park system for the enjoyment, education, and inspiration of this and future generations.

National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Permit
The Clean Water Act prohibits the discharge of "pollutants" through a "point source" into "waters of the United States" without an NPDES permit. Point sources are discrete conveyances such as pipes or man-made ditches. Individual homes that are connected to a municipal system, use a septic system, or do not have a surface discharge do not need an NPDES permit; however, industrial, municipal, and other facilities must obtain permits if their discharges go directly to surface waters.

The term "waters of the United States" is defined very broadly in the Clean Water Act and 25 years of subsequent litigation. It means navigable waters, tributaries to navigable waters, interstate waters, the oceans out to 200 miles, and intrastate waters which are used by interstate travelers for recreation or other purposes, as a source of fish or shellfish sold in interstate commerce, or for industrial purposes by industries engaged in interstate commerce.

The NPDES permit specifies limits on what can be discharged, monitoring and reporting requirements, and other provisions to ensure that the discharge does not adversely affect water quality or people's health. NPDES permits are issued by states that have obtained EPA approval to issue permits or by EPA Regions in states without such approval.

National Register of Historic Places (NR or NRHP)
The comprehensive list of districts, sites, buildings, structures, and objects of national, regional, state, and local significance in American history, architecture, archeology, engineering, and culture kept by the NPS under authority of the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966.

Native Americans
Includes American Indians, Alaskan natives, native peoples of the Caribbean, native Hawaiians, and other native Pacific islanders.

Native Plant
NRCS website: Native Plant

Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS)
Since 1935, the NRCS (originally called the Soil Conservation Service) has provided leadership in a partnership effort to help America's private land owners and managers conserve their soil, water, and other natural resources.

Natural Resources Conservation Service Plant Materials Center (NRCS PMC)
The Plant Material Centers and Specialists provide essential and effective plant solutions for critical habitats, environmental concerns, and management practices. They assist the parks in growing plant materials to maintain the genetic gene pool in the specific park ecosystem.

Exchanges, in either a competitive or sole source environment, between the Government and offerors, that are undertaken with the intent of allowing the offeror to revise its proposal. (FAR 15.306(d))

NEPA - National Environmental Policy Act of 1969

Net Construction Cost
The Net Construction Cost for a project includes:

  1. Direct Construction Costs - the estimated cost of all labor, equipment and materials required for construction of the proposed project (the bricks and mortar).
  2. Mark-ups which include:
    1. Location Factor
    2. Design Contingency: This relates to the accuracy of the definition of scope of work. Early in planning (Class C) this markup is typically 15% to 30%. This amount should disappear after preparation of construction documents (Class A).
    3. General Conditions: Everything the construction contractor is required by contract to provide or perform in excess and in order to provide contracted work, usually found in the boilerplate and Division 1 of construction specifications (e.g.., submittals, permits, mobilization /demobilization, construction facilities, surveying, etc.).
    4. Overhead and Profit

New Area Study
See Special Resource Study.

NGO - Non-Governmental Organization

NHL - National Historic Landmark

NHPA - National Historic Preservation Act

NLC - National Leadership Council

NMFS - National Marine Fisheries Service

Noise Level
The sound level obtained through the use of A-weighting according to ANSI Standard 1.4. The unit of measure is the decibel (dB), commonly referred to as DBA when A-weighting is used.

Non-Attainment Area
A geographic area in which the level of a criteria air pollutant is higher than th level allowed by the NAAQS.

Non-Destructive Investigation
A physical examination technique which does not negatively impact a historic structure or its historic architectural elements. No demolition, even limited demolition, occurs when this technique is used; only readily-accessible elements are examined.

Non-Governmental Organization (NGO)
A potential partner for parks, NGOs include a broad array of citizen volunteer and non-profit groups, usually organized around an issue or set of issues.

Non-Native Plant
NRCS website: Non-Native Plant

Notice of Award
In construction, a notice to the contractor of contract award that includes:

  • Identification of the invitation for bids;
  • Identification of the contractor's bid;
  • The award price;
  • Advice to the contractor that any required payment and performance bonds must be promptly executed and returned to the Contracting Officer;
  • The date of commencement of work, or advise that a notice to proceed will be issued. (FAR 36.213-4)

Notice of Termination
A written notice to the contractor that the contract is being terminated for convenience or default. (FAR 49.102(a))

Notice to Proceed (NTP)
A written notice from the government to the contractor authorizing the work to proceed on a specified date. NTP is the contractual beginning of the performance period.

Novation Agreement
A legal instrument:

  1. Executed by the:
    1. Contractor (transferor),
    2. Successor in interest (transferee), and
    3. Government;
  2. By which, among other things, the transferor guarantees performance of the contract, the transferee assumes all obligations under the contract, and the Government recognizes the transfer of the contract and related assets. (FAR 42.1201)

NPDES Permit - National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System Permit

NPS - National Park Service

NPS Accessibility Inspector
The person responsible for conducting the final accessibility inspection before substantial completion. The NPS Accessibility Inspector will be the Park, Region, DSC Accessibility Coordinator or a qualified designee. To qualify as an accessibility inspector, the person has to have attended a National Center on Accessibility (NCA), or equivalent course on physical accessibility within the last two years.

NPS Project Sustainability Checklist
Describes sustainability goals, features and requirements for building and non-building related projects. Identifies specific Federal requirements. Many Federal requirements require specification adaptations, modeling, or other deliverables through the design and construction process. One specific Federal requirement in this checklist relates to the Federal requirement for commissioning. Depending on the size and complexity of the project, commissioning activities may be required to be independent of the design and construction firm and may be required to begin as early as the Predesign (PD) stage.

See National Register of Historic Places.

NRCS - Natural Resources Conservation Service

NRCS PMC - Natural Resources Conservation Service Plant Materials Center

NRHP - National Register of Historic Places

NTP - Notice to Proceed


Last updated: November 16, 2023

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