Frequent Questions: Prescott Grant Program
The Prescott Grant Program provides grants or cooperative agreements to eligible Marine Mammal Stranding Network participants. Below you will find answers to some frequently asked questions regarding the program.
How many grants can I apply for? How many can I receive?
There is no limit on the number of grants that you can apply for as the same eligible stranding network participant or researcher. If you submit multiple proposals, you must clearly identify the different projects and should address national and/or regional priorities. Eligible stranding network participants can receive no more than two awards per fiscal year as part of the competitive program. The two awards must be for projects that are clearly separate in their objectives, goals, budget, and cost-sharing requests. If you are applying as an eligible researcher, but not independently authorized under Sections 112(c) or 109(h) of the Marine Mammal Protection Act, you can only receive one award for the fiscal year.
On Standard Form 424, is the application still considered "new" if it is continuing activities from a previous Prescott award?
All Prescott awards are considered "new," even if the project continues previously funded work.
On Standard Form 424, do the project start and end dates have to be exactly 1 calendar year (12 months) and fall on certain days of the month?
The project period for awards may be up to 3 years to complete the proposed work, but each award can only be $100,000 in federal funds. You should select a start date no earlier than August 1, 2020. The start date must be on the first day of the month and the end date must be the last day of the month. For example, August 1, 2017 to July 31, 2018.
Can I submit a similar proposal to last year's awarded proposal as long as it doesn't overlap with the award period of the existing award?
Yes, the project can continue work completed under a previous Prescott award, but it will still be considered a "new" application.
How early can I submit my Prescott Grant proposal? If I submit my proposal early, can you review it to ensure that I have provided all the information required?
You can submit your Prescott Grant proposal any time after the federal funding opportunity has been published on Grants.gov. We cannot guarantee a review before the deadline date; therefore, you should ensure that your proposal meets all the federal funding opportunity requirements.
Am I eligible to apply for Prescott Grant funding?
All eligible applicants must currently be an active, authorized participant or researcher in the National Marine Mammal Stranding Network. Applicants must also be one of the following:
- Stranding Agreement holders or their designee organizations recognized by the applicable NOAA Fisheries region.
- Co-Investigators (CI) authorized as Level 3,4, or 5 large whale entanglement
responders under the MMHSRP’s MMPA/ESA scientific research and enhancement permit
(permit no. 18786-03); or
- Holders of researcher authorization letters issued by a NOAA Fisheries regional administrator and/or an MMPA and/or Endangered Species Act scientific research or enhancement permit (when applicable), including co-investigator authorization.
- Eligible federal, state, or local government personnel or tribal personnel—pursuant to Section 109(h) of the MMPA, 16 U.S.C. 1379(h).
- Diagnostic or service organizations performing services for the stranding network.
Federal agencies in the U.S. Department of Commerce or U.S. Department of the Interior are not eligible to receive a Prescott award.
If I am a researcher that has participated in the Stranding Network over the past 3 years through collaboration with Stranding Agreement holders, what must I do to show that I am eligible for Prescott funds?
Researcher participants must hold a current, active, authorizing letter for the proposed award period from the appropriate NOAA Fisheries regional administrator or the assistant administrator to salvage stranded marine mammal specimens, parts, and samples for scientific research (50 CFR 216.22). Researchers who are authorized under an MMPA or ESA scientific research or enhancement permit must still obtain an authorizing letter from the regional stranding coordinator to use parts or specimens from stranded animals. Researcher participants that would not require an authorizing letter from the NOAA Fisheries regional administrator (i.e., they will be working with data only and not possessing samples or specimens) must still provide a letter of eligibility from the regional stranding coordinator. Researcher participants must also have designated co-investigator(s) that are active, NOAA-authorized stranding network participants in good standing and provide documentation to this effect.
What are indirect costs?
Indirect costs are overhead costs for the basic operational functions of a facility, organization, or business (e.g., lights, rent, water, and insurance). Indirect costs may be include din the budget. Applicants proposing to use an approved negotiated indirect cost rate agreement (NICRA) must submit a copy of the signed NICRA with the application package. Applicants that have not previously established an indirect cost rate with a federal agency may choose to use the de minimis indirect cost rate of 10 percent of modified total direct costs (as allowable under 2 C.F.R. §200.414). If an applicant has not previously established an indirect cost rate with a federal agency, the applicant may choose to negotiate a rate with the U.S. Department of Commerce. The negotiation and approval of a rate is subject to the procedures required by NOAA and the U.S. Department of Commerce Standard Terms and Conditions, Section B.06.
What is the maximum amount of federal funds that can be awarded for any one Prescott grant? How much must the applicant include in matching funds?
The maximum amount of federal funds that can be awarded for any one grant is $100,000. The applicant must match up to 25 percent of the TOTAL project costs, NOT JUST the federal costs. If the federal portion (75 percent of the total costs of the project) is $100,000, the applicant's matching costs must be at least $33,334 (25 percent of $133,334). Match amounts must be in whole dollars. If the 25 percent results in cents, please round up to the next whole dollar. For example, a calculated 25 percent match of $24,414.29 should be rounded up to $24,415. Applicants are encouraged to use the cost share calculator to determine matching funds.
What costs are allowed as part of the non-federal match?
By definition, all contributions are cash because they represent direct costs to the applicant. "In-kind" contributions are non-cash contributions from third parties (i.e., anyone other than the applicant). Non-federal contributions toward match, including cash and third-party in-kind, are acceptable when such contributions are:
Verifiable from the applicant's records (e.g., a log of volunteer hours, copies of donation receipts).
Not included as non-federal matching contributions for any other federally assisted project or program (including other Prescott awards).
Necessary and reasonable for accomplishing project objectives.
Allowable under the federal grants administrative requirements and federal cost principles. For further explanation of the federal grants requirements and cost principles, please refer to 2 C.F.R. § 200.306.
Not paid by the federal government under another award, except where authorized.
Provided in the approved budget.
Volunteer services furnished by professional and technical personnel, consultants, and other skilled and unskilled labor may be counted as non-federal match if the service is an integral and necessary part of an approved project. Rates for volunteer services shall be consistent with those paid for similar work in the recipient's organization (documentation of consistent salaries is helpful and may be necessary).
What types of "construction costs" can be included in a Prescott Grant proposal?
For the Prescott Grant Program, allowable costs for construction include build-outs, alterations, upgrades, and renovations to facilities. If construction costs are included, the proposal must allow the program office to determine whether the proposed costs are allowable, reasonable, and necessary. This includes any contractual arrangements that will be used to fulfill all or part of the construction work.
How do I apply for a research permit?
If you need a research permit, please apply through the NOAA Fisheries Protected Resources Permit Program.
How are funds equitably distributed among the NOAA Fisheries regions?
Funds will be equitably distributed among regions based on the program review panel’s recommendations. The program review panel—consisting of at least three national and regional Marine Mammal Health and Stranding Response Program staff consulting with the Marine Mammal Commission, if possible—will evaluate technical review comments and scores, application materials, stranding statistics by region, stranding network effort or coverage per region, and previous Prescott award performance (if applicable). Equitable distribution will be determined using the best available data on average annual strandings and mortalities, sizes of marine mammal populations within each region, and unusual mortality events.
Are there examples of the information that I need to submit as part of my grant application?
Yes, examples are provided here:
Project Title Page (PDF, 1 page)
Budget Table (PDF, 1 page)
Organizational Summary (PDF, 1 page)