[Federal Register: January 26, 1999 (Volume 64, Number 16)]
[Notices]               
[Page 4009-4023]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
[DOCID:fr26ja99-147]


[[Page 4009]]

_______________________________________________________________________

Part II





Department of Labor





_______________________________________________________________________



Employment and Training Administration



_______________________________________________________________________



Welfare-to-Work Competitive Grants; Notice


[[Page 4010]]



DEPARTMENT OF LABOR

Employment and Training Administration

 
Welfare-to-Work Competitive Grants

AGENCY: Employment and Training Administration (ETA), DOL.

ACTION: Notice of availability of funds; solicitation for grant 
applications.

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

SUMMARY: The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), Employment and Training 
Administration (ETA) announces the third round of competitive grants 
under the Welfare-to-Work (WtW) grant program. The WtW program assists 
States and local communities to provide the transitional employment 
assistance needed to move hard-to-employ recipients of Temporary 
Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), and certain noncustodial parents, 
who have experienced or have characteristics associated with long-term 
welfare dependence, into lasting unsubsidized jobs. This announcement 
describes the conditions under which applications will be received 
under the (WtW) Competitive Grants program and how DOL/ETA will 
determine which applications it will fund. Please note that substantive 
changes have been made to this solicitation from previous WtW 
competitive grant solicitations. Read this Announcement carefully. In 
this round, the Department of Labor is placing a high priority on 
funding applications targeted to specific populations who face 
particular challenges in moving from welfare to work: noncustodial 
parents, individuals with disabilities, individuals who require 
substance abuse treatment, victims of domestic violence and individuals 
with limited English proficiency. Applications targeting these high 
priority populations may be eligible for bonus points. Applications for 
other WtW projects will also be considered, but will not be eligible 
for the bonus points associated with serving a high priority 
population. This announcement includes all of the information and forms 
needed to apply for WtW competitive grants.

DATES: The closing date for receipt of applications under this 
announcement is April 30, 1999. For the funding cycle covered by this 
announcement, complete applications must be received at the address 
below no later than 2 p.m. EST (Eastern Standard Time). Except as 
provided below, grant applications received after this date and time 
will not be considered. Applications which are not accepted for this 
announcement must be resubmitted to be considered for future 
announcements.

ADDRESSES: U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training 
Administration, Division of Federal Assistance, Attention: Ms. Mamie D. 
Williams, SGA/DFA 99-003, 200 Constitution Avenue, NW, Room S4203, 
Washington, D.C. 20210.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Questions should be faxed to Ms. Mamie 
D. Williams, Grant Management Specialist, Division of Federal 
Assistance, Fax: (202) 219-8739. This is not a toll-free number. 
Questions may also be sent via electronic mail to ``disgu-
sga@doleta.gov.'' All inquiries sent via fax or e-mail should include 
the SGA number (DFA 99-003) and a contact name and phone number. This 
announcement is also being published on the Internet on the Employment 
and Training Administration's Welfare-to-Work Home Page at http://
wtw.doleta.gov. Commonly asked questions and answers with regard to the 
WtW competitive grants and the WtW program in general, and copies of 
the Interim Final Rule governing the Welfare-to-Work program, including 
activities conducted under the competitive grants, are also available 
on the WtW Home Page. Award notifications will be also published on the 
WtW Home Page.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Authority

    Section 403(a)(5)(B) of Title IV of the Social Security Act. 
Regulations governing the WtW program are at 20 CFR Part 645, published 
at 62 FR 61588 (November 18, 1997).

II. Submission of Applications

    Four copies of the application must be submitted, one of which must 
contain an original signature. Proposals must be submitted by the 
applicant only. All applications must be single-spaced, and on single-
sided, numbered pages. A font size of at least 12 point is required.
    Section I of the application must include the following required 
elements: (1) Application Cover Sheet; (2) Project Financial Plan, 
including the SF-424, (3) ETA Form 9070, Project Synopsis Form, and (4) 
Evidence of State and local consultation. Section I will not count 
against the application page limits. Failure to include all elements 
required in this section will result in disqualification of the 
application. Applications will not be reviewed if appropriate State and 
PIC/political subdivision certifications (or evidence of efforts to 
consult, as described in Section IV below) are not included. No 
additional information or materials will be accepted by the Department 
of Labor after the closing date, unless such additional material is 
specifically requested by the Grant Officer.
    Section II of the application, the project narrative, shall not 
exceed twenty (20) pages for the Government Requirements/Statement of 
Work section, as described below in the ``Required Content for WtW 
Competitive Grant Applications--Fiscal Year 1999,'' plus an additional 
ten (10) pages for Attachments, to include no information that is 
critical to the review of the proposal. Letters of support for a 
proposal should NOT be submitted and will count against the page 
limits.

Acceptable Methods of Submission

    Applications may be hand-delivered or mailed. Hand-delivered 
applications must be received at the address identified above by the 
date and time specified. Overnight mail deliveries will be treated as 
hand-deliveries. Mailed applications that arrive after the closing date 
will be accepted if they are post-marked at least five (5) days prior 
to the closing date. Applications submitted via overnight mail that 
arrive after the closing date will be accepted if they are post-marked 
at least two (2) days prior to the closing date. Otherwise, late 
applications will not be accepted. Telegraphed and/or faxed 
applications will not be accepted.
    Applications may be withdrawn by written notice or telegram 
(including mailgram), or in person if the representative's identity is 
made known, and the representative signs a receipt for the application.

OMB Approval of Paperwork Burden

    According to the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, no persons are 
required to respond to a collection of information unless such 
collection displays a valid OMB control number. The valid OMB control 
number for this information collection is 1205-0399, expiration 7/99. 
The time required to complete this information collection is estimated 
to average twenty (20) hours per response, including the time to review 
the instructions, search existing data resources, gather data needed, 
and complete and review the information. Comments concerning this 
burden estimate or any other aspect of this collection of information, 
including suggestions for reducing this burden, to the U.S. Department 
of Labor, Office of Job Training Programs, Room N4459, Washington, DC 
20210 (Paperwork Reduction Project 1205-0399).

[[Page 4011]]

Comments may be reflected in the development of future solicitations.

Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Number

    The Welfare-to-Work program is listed in the Catalog of Federal 
Domestic Assistance at No. 17.253, ``Employment and Training 
Assistance--Welfare-to-Work Grants to States & Local Entities for Hard-
to-Employ Welfare Recipient Programs.''

III. Program Scope and Funding

    Competitive grant projects will be expected to achieve the purpose 
of all WtW grants:
    To provide transitional assistance which moves welfare recipients 
into unsubsidized employment providing good career potential for 
achieving economic self-sufficiency.
    This transitional assistance is to be provided through a ``work 
first'' service strategy in which recipients are engaged in employment-
based activities. Grant funds may be used to provide needed basic and/
or vocational skills training as a post-employment service in 
conjunction with either subsidized or unsubsidized employment. This 
flexibility, established in the Regulations, reflects the basic ``work 
first'' philosophy of the WtW legislation, and recognizes the critical 
importance of continuous skills acquisition and lifelong learning to 
economic self-sufficiency.
    All competitive grant projects are expected to be integral parts of 
a comprehensive strategy for moving eligible individuals into 
unsubsidized employment in a local, community-based context. Projects 
should develop and implement innovative approaches that enhance a 
community's ability to move eligible individuals into self-sustaining 
employment, create upward mobility paths and higher earnings potential 
for WtW participants, and achieve sustainable improvements in the 
community's service infrastructure for assisting welfare recipients.
    All applications will be reviewed under the criteria set forth in 
Part VII of this announcement, including the effectiveness of the 
proposal in moving TANF recipients who are least job ready into 
unsubsidized employment, in moving such recipients into unsubsidized 
employment in labor markets that have a shortage of low-skill jobs, and 
in expanding the base of knowledge about programs aimed at moving TANF 
recipients into long-term unsubsidized employment.

Targeted Populations

    Within the overall WtW competition, the Department seeks 
applications that target one of five high priority populations--(1) 
noncustodial parents; (2) individuals with disabilities; (3) 
individuals requiring substance abuse treatment; (4) victims of 
domestic violence or (5) individuals with limited English proficiency. 
Applications that identify one (and only one) of these target 
populations on the Project Synopsis Form (ETA Form 9070, Appendix B) 
will be reviewed separately by a panel of appropriate subject matter 
experts. Applications that target more than one of the high priority 
populations will be considered as general applications. It is important 
to note that the eligibility criteria and the proposed outcomes for 
projects for these targeted populations are the same as for the WtW 
program overall--to place hard-to-employ individuals in unsubsidized 
employment leading to economic self-sufficiency.
    Projects serving high priority populations must respond to the same 
requirements as all other WtW competitive grant proposals, as described 
in ``Required Content for WtW Competitive Grant Applications--Fiscal 
Year 1999'' below. In addition, these applications will be required to 
describe: the specific services to be provided that address the unique 
characteristics of the targeted population; the specific partner 
organizations who have experience serving the targeted population or 
who will be key to the recruitment of the population into the project; 
and the prevalence of the targeted population within the eligible WtW 
population in the local area(s) to be served by the project.

Other Areas of Interest

    In addition to proposing innovative strategies for moving welfare 
recipients into lasting unsubsidized employment and for providing 
services to the targeted populations described above, applicants are 
encouraged to consider the following in designing responsive service 
strategies for the eligible population in their local area.
    <bullet> Strategies that focus on serving public and assisted 
housing residents;
    <bullet> Development of responsive transportation and child care 
service systems;
    <bullet> Integration of work and learning strategies to develop 
skills that promote employment, retention and career development;
    <bullet> Creation of job opportunities (including self-employment) 
that allow for flexibility to address work and family needs while 
providing income levels that are adequate for self-sufficiency;
    <bullet> Proactive strategies to involve employers in design of 
service strategies and implementation of the project;
    <bullet> Strategies that focus on family-based assistance and that 
are integrated with children systems (e.g., Child Care, Head Start) 
that can assist the full family unit;
    <bullet> Activities to help women access nontraditional 
occupations; and
    <bullet> Strategies that reflect effective integration with both 
the workforce development (e.g., One-Stop) and welfare systems.
    In identifying those Other Areas of Interest addressed by the 
proposal on the Project Synopsis form (Required format can be found in 
Appendix B), please indicate the page number on which relevant text 
relating to this interest area can be found in the proposal narrative.
    The Department is also interested in receiving applications to 
implement projects that are coordinated with community saturation 
strategies (in which comprehensive services are available to assist all 
of the eligible residents in a defined community). The Department 
expects that these applications would be submitted from communities in 
which there are concentrations of eligible hard-to-employ individuals, 
there is a reasonable opportunity to provide employment for all such 
individuals, and there are established partnerships which can 
contribute a significant level of resources to implement the strategy. 
A definition of ``community saturation strategy'' is provided in 
Appendix A.

Funding Availability

    Approximately $240 million is available for Federal grant 
assistance through this announcement. Of the funds available in this 
round of competitive grants, the Department aims to distribute 
approximately 70 percent for projects to serve cities with large 
concentrations of poverty and 30 percent for projects to serve rural 
areas. Definitions for ``cities with large concentrations of poverty'' 
and ``rural area'' can be found in Appendix A of this announcement. 
Applications to serve rural areas should be targeted to serve eligible 
residents from subareas that represent concentrations of poverty. 
Further, as indicated under the Criteria section of this solicitation, 
applicants are strongly encouraged to present innovative strategies to 
address the needs of areas with concentrations of poverty. Each 
application must indicate

[[Page 4012]]

on the required Project Synopsis Form either a rural or an urban focus 
for its project services.
    It is expected that most grant awards will be between $1 million 
and $5 million. Furthermore, it is expected that most grants will serve 
a minimum of 100 eligible participants. Applications that are outside 
of this range must provide a brief explanation of how the project will 
have substantial community impact (especially for those below $1 
million and/or fewer than 100 participants), or how project services 
will be provided on a local level and targeted to the specific needs of 
the defined target group (especially for those applications over $5 
million).

Award Period

    It is expected that the planned performance period for most 
projects will be between 18 and 30 months. Grant funds are not 
available for expenditure for longer than three years. No obligation or 
commitment of funds will be allowed beyond the grant period of 
performance. Any unspent grant funds must be returned to the Federal 
government.

IV. Eligible Grant Applicants

    Private Industry Councils (PICs), political subdivisions of the 
State, and private entities (as defined in Appendix A) are eligible to 
receive grant funds under this announcement. Eligible private entities 
include community development corporations, community action agencies, 
community-based and faith-based organizations, disability community 
organizations, public and private colleges and universities, and other 
qualified organizations. Private entities include both non-profit and 
for-profit organizations but do not include individuals.
    Entities other than a PIC or a political subdivision of the State 
must submit an application for competitive grant funds in conjunction 
with the PIC(s) or political subdivision(s) for the area in which the 
project is to operate. The term ``in conjunction with'' shall mean that 
the application must include a signed certification by both the 
applicant and either the appropriate PIC(s) or political subdivision(s) 
indicating that:
    1. The applicant has consulted with the appropriate PIC(s)/
political subdivision(s) during the development of the application; and
    2. The activities proposed in the application are consistent with, 
and will be coordinated with, the WtW efforts of the PIC(s)/political 
subdivision(s).
    If the applicant is unable to obtain the certification, it will be 
required to include information describing the efforts which were 
undertaken to consult with the PIC(s)/political subdivision(s) and 
indicating that the PIC(s)/political subdivision(s) were provided a 
sufficient opportunity to cooperate in the development of the project 
plan and to review and comment on the application prior to its 
submission to the Department of Labor. ``Sufficient opportunity for 
PIC/political subdivision review and comment'' shall mean at least 30 
calendar days.
    The certification, or evidence of efforts to consult, must be with 
either each PIC or each political subdivision in the service area in 
which the proposed project is to operate. These certifications must be 
included in Section I of the grant application, and will not count 
against the established page limitations. For the purposes of this 
portion of the application, applicants must demonstrate, through 
written documentation such as registered mail receipt, that project 
applications were shared with the PIC/political subdivision in a timely 
manner. Certifications or evidence of efforts to consult must be 
included with the application. The Department of Labor will not accept 
additional information after the closing date.

State-level Consultation

    All applicants for competitive grants, including PICs and political 
subdivisions, must submit their applications to the Governor or, at the 
discretion of the Governor, to the designated State administrative 
entity for the WtW program, for review and comment prior to submission 
of the application to the Department. For private entities, State 
review must be subsequent to review by the PIC or political 
subdivision.
    When submitted to the Department, the application must include any 
comments from the Governor or his/her designee or must include 
information indicating that the Governor was provided a sufficient 
opportunity for review and comment prior to submission to the 
Department. ``Sufficient opportunity for State review and comment'' 
shall mean at least 15 calendar days. For the purposes of this portion 
of the application, information indicating that the Governor was 
provided opportunity for review must be demonstrated by written 
documentation, such as registered mail receipt, that project 
applications were submitted to the Governor or his/her designee in a 
timely manner. Certifications or evidence of efforts to consult must be 
included with the application. The Department of Labor will not accept 
additional information after the closing date.

Applicants for Multiple Community or National Projects

    Consideration will be given to applications which propose multi-
community or national strategies to move welfare recipients into long-
term unsubsidized employment leading to economic self-sufficiency. For 
example, an applicant may design a nationwide project to create jobs 
for welfare recipients in a particular industry. Applications which 
propose multi-community or national strategies must meet all of the 
application requirements contained in this Announcement. Specifically, 
private entities proposing such projects must include the signed 
certification from the applicable PIC or political subdivision of each 
local area in which the project will operate or other evidence 
indicating the efforts undertaken to obtain the required consultation 
as described above. Such applications must also demonstrate the 
required consultation with the Governors of the States in which the 
project will operate. Applications proposing national projects must 
comply with all statutory and regulatory requirements and will be rated 
under the same evaluation criteria as other applications. Applicants 
should be aware that the extent of local collaboration demonstrated in 
a national project will be considered as an important factor in the 
overall strength of the proposal. Applications targeting one of the 
high priority populations may also propose a multi-site project.

Lobbying Disclosure Act of 1995

    Entities described in section 501(c)(4) of the Internal Revenue 
Code that engage in lobbying activities are not eligible to receive 
funds under this announcement. The Lobbying Disclosure Act of 1995, 2 
U.S.C. 1601 et seq., prohibits the award of Federal funds to these 
entities if they engage in lobbying activities.

V. Program and Administrative Requirements

Participant Eligibility and Funding Expenditures

    Each project will be required to meet the targeting provisions 
described at 20 CFR 645.211-645.213. [Note: The WtW Regulations are 
available at the WtW Internet web site at http://wtw.doleta.gov.] These 
provisions dictate that a minimum of 70 percent of the funds in each 
WtW competitive grant must be used to serve hard-to-employ individuals 
as described in Sec.

[[Page 4013]]

645.212. Furthermore, no more than 30 percent of the funds in each 
grant may be used to serve individuals with characteristics predictive 
of long-term welfare dependence, as described in Sec. 645.213.

Allowable Uses of Funds

    Competitive grant funds shall be spent only for those activities 
identified in the WtW Regulations, at 20 CFR Part 645.220 and set forth 
below; for appropriate administrative costs; and for information 
technology costs in accordance with 20 CFR 645.235(c)(3).

WtW Allowable Activities Are:

    (a) Job readiness activities financed through job vouchers or 
through contracts with public or private providers.
    (b) Employment activities which consist of any of the following: 
(1) Community service programs; (2) Work experience programs; (3) Job 
creation through public or private sector employment wage subsidies; 
and (4) On-the-job training.
    (c) Job placement services financed through job vouchers or through 
contracts with public or private providers subject to the payment 
requirements at Sec. 645.230(a)(3).
    (d) Post-employment services financed through job vouchers or 
through contracts with public or private providers, which are provided 
after an individual is placed in one of the employment activities 
listed in paragraph (b) above, or in any other subsidized or 
unsubsidized job. Post-employment services include, but are not limited 
to, such services as: (1) Basic educational skills training; (2) 
Occupational skills training; (3) English as a second language 
training; and (4) Mentoring.
    (e) Job retention services and support services which are provided 
after an individual is placed in a job readiness activity, as specified 
in paragraph (a) above, in one of the employment activities, as 
specified in paragraph (b) above, or in any other subsidized or 
unsubsidized job. These services can be provided with WtW funds only if 
they are not otherwise available to the participant. Job retention and 
support services include, but are not limited to, such services as: (1) 
Transportation assistance; (2) Substance abuse treatment (except that 
WtW funds may not be used to provide medical treatment); (3) Child care 
assistance; (4) Emergency or short-term housing assistance; and (5) 
Other supportive services.
    (f) Individual development accounts which are established in 
accordance with section 404(h) of the Act.
    (g) Intake, assessment, eligibility determination, development of 
an individualized service strategy, and case management may be 
incorporated in the design of any of the allowable activities listed in 
paragraphs (a) through (f) above.

Administrative Costs

    Allowable costs and the 15 percent limitation on administrative 
costs for WtW competitive grants are defined in the WtW Regulations at 
20 CFR 645.235. All proposed costs must be reflected as either a direct 
charge to specific budget line items, or as an indirect cost. Direct 
and indirect administrative costs are allowable, but combined, these 
costs cannot exceed 15 percent of the total grant. The administrative 
costs negotiated in the final grant document may be below fifteen 
percent.
    Only costs which result from applying a federally-approved indirect 
cost rate may be entered on the ``indirect cost'' line item of the 
budget. If an indirect cost rate is used, the applicant must include 
documentation from the cognizant Federal agency which includes the 
approved rate, the cost base against which it is applied, and the 
approval date.
    All applicants will be expected to justify proposed costs (see Item 
1B, Project Financial Plan, in the ``Required Content for WtW 
Competitive Grants Applications--Fiscal Year 1999''). Profits are not 
an allowable use of grant funds.

Use of Federal Funds

    Federal funds cannot be used to support activities which would be 
provided in the absence of those funds. Grant funds may cover only 
those costs which are appropriate and reasonable. Federal grant funds 
may only be used to acquire equipment which is necessary for the 
operation of the grant. The grantee must receive prior approval from 
the DOL/ETA Grant Officer for the purchase and/or lease of any property 
and/or equipment with a per unit acquisition cost of $5,000 or more, 
and a useful life of more than one year as defined in the ``Uniform 
Administrative Requirements for Grants and Cooperative Agreements to 
State and Local Governments'', codified at 29 CFR Part 97 (also known 
as the ``Common Rule''), and ``Grants and Agreements with Institutes of 
Higher Education, Hospitals and Other Non-Profit Organizations,'' 
codified at 29 CFR Part 95 (also known as OMB Circular A-110). This 
restriction includes the purchase of Automated Data Processing (ADP) 
equipment. A request for such prior approval may be included in the 
grant application or submitted after the grant award. Requests 
submitted after the grant award must be directed through the Grant 
Officer Technical Representative (GOTR) and must include a detailed 
description and cost of the items to be acquired.
    Grant funds also may not be used to cover any project-related costs 
incurred prior to the effective date of the grant award. In making a 
grant award, DOL/ETA has no obligation to provide any future additional 
funding in connection with the grant award.
    Pursuant to 20 CFR Part 645.235(c)(3), the costs of information 
technology--computer hardware and software--needed for tracking or 
monitoring under a WtW grant are not subject to the fifteen percent 
limitation on administrative costs.

Year 2000 Compliance

    Any information technology purchased in whole or in part with WtW 
funds, which is used for a period of time that goes beyond December 31, 
1999, must be ``year 2000 compliant.'' This means that such information 
technology shall accurately process date/time data (including, but not 
limited to, calculating, comparing and sequencing) from, into and 
between the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, the years 1999 and 
2000, and leap year calculations. Furthermore, ``year 2000 compliant'' 
information technology, when used in combination with other information 
technology, shall accurately process date/time data if the other 
information technology properly exchanges date/time with it.

Assurances and Certifications

    The following assurances and certifications must be included as 
part of each grant application: Debarment & Suspension Certification.
    Other assurances and certifications will be required as part of 
each executed grant agreement, but do not need to be submitted as part 
of a WtW Competitive grant application: Assurances/Non-Construction 
Programs; Certification Regarding Lobbying; Drug Free Workplace 
Certification; Certification of Non-delinquency; and Non-discrimination 
and Equal Opportunity Requirements.

Departmental Oversight

    The Department reserves the right to conduct oversight and both 
programmatic and financial monitoring activities for all competitive 
grants

[[Page 4014]]

awarded under the WtW grants program.

Department of Health and Human Services Evaluation of the Welfare-to-
Work Program

    Competitive grant projects will participate in the evaluation of 
the WtW grant program by the U.S. Department of Health and Human 
Services (DHHS), as described in Title IV, section 413(j)(1) of the 
Social Security Act. The goal of the DHHS evaluation is to expand the 
base of knowledge about programs aimed at moving the least job-ready 
welfare recipients into unsubsidized employment. The Department of 
Health and Human Services has selected Mathematica Policy Research as 
the evaluation contractor for this project. The evaluator will collect 
program and administrative data to determine the range of WtW project 
designs and the employment outcomes for all WtW grantees, consistent 
with section 413(j)(1)(C) of the Social Security Act. In addition, the 
evaluator, in cooperation with DHHS, will select certain sites at which 
to qualitatively study the implementation of the WtW program and other 
sites where net impact and cost effectiveness of the program will be 
examined quantitatively. For more information concerning Mathematica's 
evaluation of the WtW grants program, visit their website at http://
www.mathematica-mpr.com.

VI. Monitoring and Reporting

Monitoring

    The Department shall be responsible for ensuring effective 
implementation of each competitive grant project in accordance with the 
Act, the Regulations, the provisions of this announcement and the 
negotiated grant agreement. Applicants should assume that at least one 
on-site project review will be conducted by Department staff, or their 
designees, at approximately the midpoint of the project performance 
period. This review will focus on the project's performance in meeting 
the grant's programmatic goals and participant outcomes, complying with 
the targeting requirements regarding recipients who are served, 
expenditure of grant funds on allowable activities, integration with 
other resources and service providers in the local area, and methods 
for assessment of the responsiveness and effectiveness of the services 
being provided. Grants may be subject to other additional reviews at 
the discretion of the Department.

Reporting

    Applicants selected as grantees will be required to provide the 
following reports:
    1. Financial Reporting: The Department of Labor (DOL) issued 
financial reporting instructions for competitive grantees on June 24, 
1998. Financial reports will be submitted electronically directly to 
DOL.
    2. Participant Reporting: Participant reporting instructions will 
be issued shortly covering the WtW competitive grant program. 
Participant reports for each competitive grant will be submitted in 
accordance with reporting instructions at a later date.
    3. Other Reporting: The Department of Labor may negotiate 
additional reporting requirements with individual grantees, where 
necessary, for grant management and/or knowledge development purposes, 
including quarterly narrative reports.
    In addition to required quarterly financial and participant 
reporting, some grantees may be asked to provide information to the 
appropriate ETA Regional Office during the early implementation phase 
of the project for the purpose of project oversight. This information 
may include project enrollment levels, participant characteristics, and 
emerging implementation issues.

VII. Review and Selection of Applications for Grant Award Review 
Process

    The Department will screen all applications to determine whether 
all required elements are present and clearly identifiable. These 
elements are described below in the ``Required Content for WtW 
Competitive Grant Applications--Fiscal Year 1999.'' Failure to include 
and all required elements in Section I of the grant application will 
result in rejection of the application.
    Each complete application will be objectively rated by a panel 
against the criteria described in this announcement. Applicants are 
advised that the panel recommendations to the Grant Officer are 
advisory in nature. The Grant Officer may elect to award grants either 
with or without discussion with the applicant. In situations where no 
discussions occur, an award will be based on the applicant's signature 
on the SF424 form (See Appendix B), which constitutes a binding offer.
    Those applications that target one of the high priority populations 
(noncustodial parents, individuals with disabilities, individuals 
requiring substance abuse treatment, victims of domestic violence or 
individuals with limited English proficiency) will be reviewed 
separately from the general applications.
    The Grant Officer will make final award decisions based on what is 
most advantageous to the Government, considering factors such as: Panel 
findings; the geographic distribution of the competitive applications; 
the extent to which the competitive applications reflect a reasonable 
distribution of funds across the targeted populations and other areas 
of interest identified in this announcement; and the availability of 
funds.

Criteria

    The criteria, and the weights assigned to each, which will apply to 
the review of applications submitted in response to this announcement 
are:
    1. ``Relative Need for Assistance'' [20 points] which shall 
consider the concentration of poverty and long-term welfare dependence 
and the lack of employment opportunities in the project service area 
(up to 9 points); the extent of gaps in the capacity of the local 
infrastructure to effectively address the employment barriers which 
characterize the targeted population, including an assessment of 
existing WtW competitive and formula funding in the local area (up to 6 
points); and the responsiveness of the project design to the other 
areas of interest identified in Part III of this announcement (up to 5 
points).
    2. ``Innovation'' [20 points] which shall consider the extent to 
which the project incorporates new and better strategies for moving 
welfare recipients into lasting unsubsidized employment leading to 
economic self-sufficiency. These strategies can include, but are not 
limited to, new and better ways that services can be accessed by 
participants in the local community, new and better ways for local 
organizations to work together, or the replication of effective 
strategies in a new setting.
    3. ``Outcomes'' [25 points] which shall consider the quality of the 
proposed employment and earnings outcomes (up to 10 points); the extent 
to which the proposed plan of services responds to identified needs, 
the barriers faced by proposed participants, and the conditions in the 
local area as well as the likelihood that the proposed service plan 
will result in the proposed outcomes (up to 12 points); and the 
reasonableness of the level of investment in relation to the proposed 
outcomes (up to 3 points).
    4. ``Local Collaboration and Sustainability'' [25 points] which 
shall consider the extent to which the project is coordinated with the 
WtW formula

[[Page 4015]]

grant and TANF grant activities and supported by the PIC/political 
subdivision and local TANF agency (up to 8 points); the extent and 
quality of local community partnerships that are involved in and making 
substantial contributions of resources to the project (up to 7 points); 
involvement of and participation by local employers (up 5 points); and 
the extent to which the community and/or the local area has developed 
plans and commitments to maintain and expand the capacity to serve the 
target population with local resources over a sustained period of time 
(up to 5 points).
    5. ``Demonstrated Capability'' [10 points] which shall consider the 
extent to which the applicant and its partner organizations demonstrate 
a history of success in serving a comparable target group, the extent 
of use of current or former welfare recipients in the provision of 
services, and the extent to which the applicant demonstrates the 
ability to effectively execute grant management responsibilities.
    For those proposals that are deemed by the Grant Officer to be most 
competitive, applicants proposing projects in which the majority of 
participants to be served by the project reside in designated 
Empowerment Zones and Enterprise Communities (EZ/EC) will be eligible 
for 5 bonus points. Applicants must demonstrate that the majority of 
participants reside within a federally-designated EZ/EC in order to be 
awarded the 5 bonus points, and must indicate the name of the EZ/EC to 
be served. The applicant does not necessarily have to be located within 
the EZ/EC.
    In addition, for those proposals that are deemed by the Grant 
Officer to be most competitive, applicants targeting one of five high 
priority populations (noncustodial parents, individuals with 
disabilities, individuals requiring substance abuse treatment, victims 
of domestic violence or individuals with limited English proficiency) 
will be eligible for 10 bonus points. Applications must address the 
services, partner organizations and need in the local area relative to 
service to the targeted population.

    Signed at Washington, D.C., this 22nd day of January 1999.
Janice E. Perry,
DOL Grant Officer.

Required Content for WtW Competitive Grant Applications Fiscal 1999

    Each application must contain the information and follow the format 
outlined in this Part. The application must include: (1) Information 
that responds to these requirements; (2) information that indicates 
adherence to the provisions described in preceding sections of this 
announcement; and (3) any other information the applicant believes will 
address the review and selection criteria.

I. Project Summary

A. Application Cover Sheet

    Each application shall complete an Application Cover Sheet (as 
found in Appendix B) to clearly designate the applicant name, 
affiliation and which, if any, of the targeted populations will be 
served. This form will help the Department in the processing of 
applications and is required.

B. Project Financial Plan

    Information provided in this section will be evaluated 
predominantly under the ``Outcomes'' criteria.
    The financial plan shall describe all costs associated with 
implementing the project that are to be covered with grant funds. All 
costs should be necessary and reasonable according to the Federal 
guidelines set forth in the ``Uniform Administrative Requirements for 
Grants and Cooperative Agreements to State and Local Governments,'' 
codified at 29 CFR Part 97 (also known as the ``Common Rule''), and 
``Grants and Agreements with Institutes of Higher Education, Hospitals 
and Other Non-Profit Organizations' (also known as OMB Circular A-110), 
codified at 29 CFR Part 95.
    The financial plan must contain the following parts:
    <bullet> ``Application for Federal Assistance'' and ``Budget 
Information Sheet'' by line item for all costs required to implement 
the project design effectively. Submission of these two completed forms 
is required. (See Appendix B for these required forms.)

    Note: Although there is no matching requirement for these 
grants, the Department strongly encourages the leveraging of 
financial and other resources in the implementation of WtW 
competitive grant projects. These resources will not, however, be 
recorded on the Budget Information Sheet (Appendix B). Leveraged 
resources offered by applicants will be evaluated in the selection 
criteria under ``Local Collaboration and Sustainability.''

    <bullet> Budget narrative/justification which provides sufficient 
information to support the reasonableness of the costs included in the 
budget in relation to the service strategy and planned outcomes.

C. Project Synopsis Form--ETA Form 9070

    Each application shall provide a project synopsis form (ETA Form 
9070) which identifies: the applicant; the type of organization; 
applicant contact information; the project service area; whether the 
service area is a city with a large concentration of poverty or a rural 
area; whether the project is located within an EZ/EC, and if so, which 
one; which, if any, of the five high priority populations will be 
served--noncustodial parents, individuals with disabilities, 
individuals requiring substance abuse treatment, victims of domestic 
violence or individuals with limited English proficiency [NOTE: 
Applications which target more than one of the targeted populations 
will be reviewed as general applications]; the other areas of interest 
identified in the announcement which are addressed by the project (with 
page numbers where relevant portions of the project narrative can be 
found); the amount of grant funds requested; the planned period of 
performance; the planned number of WtW-eligible TANF recipients to be 
served; the number of noncustodial parents to be served (if 
applicable); the significant employment barriers which characterize the 
target group; and the planned employment and earnings outcomes. The 
required format for this synopsis can be found in Appendix B.
    In addition, each application must provide a two-page executive 
summary of the grant proposal, describing the significant employment 
barriers which characterize the target group, the proposed service 
strategy, other significant service organizations involved in the 
delivery of services, and the most innovative elements of the proposal. 
This section must be limited to no more than two single-spaced, single-
sided pages.

D. Evidence of Required Local and State Consultation

    It is the expectation of the Department that, to the extent 
possible, all applications will be developed in consultation with the 
appropriate PIC/political subdivision and the Governor. Competitive 
grant projects should complement the WtW formula program activity, 
rather than exist independent of, or in conflict with, that program.
    Each application must include the signed certification of the 
required consultation with the Governor, or of evidence of efforts to 
consult, as described in this announcement. Applications from private 
entities must also include the signed certification from the 
appropriate PIC(s) or political subdivision(s) or other evidence 
indicating the efforts undertaken to obtain the required consultation 
as described in this announcement. In areas where an entity other than 
the PIC

[[Page 4016]]

has been designated by the Governor and approved by the Secretary to 
administer the WtW formula grant, the applicant should also include 
evidence of consultation and/or support from that entity. All 
certifications or comments provided as part of this requirement must be 
included in this section of the grant application and will not be 
counted against the established page limits.

Note: All certifications or evidence of efforts to consult must be 
included as part of the application. The Department of Labor will 
not accept any information received after the closing date.

II. Government Requirements/Statement of Work--Project Narrative

    This section of the application should not exceed 20 single-spaced, 
numbered pages. The application should include information of the type 
described below, as appropriate.

Description of Service Area

    Information provided in this section will be evaluated 
predominantly under the ``Relative Need'' criteria.

--Identify the specific political and geographic jurisdictions (e.g., 
cities, counties, subsections of cities/counties) which are included in 
the service area for the project.
--Identify the percent of the population in the service area that has 
income below the poverty level.
--Identify the percent of the population in the service area that is 
receiving TANF assistance.

(Note: Child-only TANF cases should be excluded from this number 
unless these cases are relevant to the project target group--e.g. 
noncustodial parents--Please note that ETA Training and Employment 
Guidance Letter (TEGL) No. 6-98 entitled ``Technical Amendment to 
Welfare-to-Work (WtW) Eligibility Criteria for Noncustodial 
Parents'' and dated 9/21/98, provides further information on 
eligibility requirements of noncustodial parents).

--Identify the percent of the TANF population that has received TANF or 
AFDC assistance for 30 months or more, or is within 12 months of losing 
eligibility for assistance under State or Federal law (Note: Child-only 
TANF cases should be excluded from this number unless these cases are 
relevant to the project target group--e.g. noncustodial parents).
--Identify the most recent unemployment rate in the service area.
--Describe the significant deficiencies in the local area 
infrastructure that represent significant barriers to moving eligible 
recipients into permanent employment in an efficient manner (e.g., lack 
of transportation, labor market with a shortage of low-skill jobs, 
shortage of employers with appropriate employment opportunities, 
remoteness from health facilities, limited number of social and support 
service agencies).

Summary of Strategy for Use of WtW Formula and Existing Competitive 
Grant Funds in the Local Area

    Information provided in this section will be evaluated 
predominantly under the ``Local Collaboration and Sustainability'' and 
``Relative Need'' criteria.

--Identify the substate service area covered by the WtW formula and 
existing competitive grants.
--Describe the allocation of formula and existing competitive grant 
funds among the allowable activities.
--Identify the significant local and community organizations involved 
and their roles in providing assistance through the formula and 
existing competitive grants.
--Describe how the proposed competitive grant project will supplement 
and enhance the capacity of the WtW formula and existing competitive 
grant activities to effectively serve eligible recipients in the local 
area who have significant employment barriers.
--In cases where the applicant cannot obtain information regarding the 
formula grant because the State has not submitted a complete WtW 
Formula Grant Plan, the application should so indicate. Absence of this 
information, in and of itself, will not penalize the applicant.

Analysis of Target Group

    Information provided in this section will be evaluated 
predominantly under the ``Relative Need'' criteria.

--Describe the individuals targeted for assistance through this 
project, including any noncustodial parents (See reference above to 
TEGL 6-98, dated 9/21/98 concerning eligibility determination for 
noncustodial parents), individuals with disabilities, individuals 
requiring substance abuse treatment, victims of domestic violence, 
individuals with limited English proficiency, and public and assisted 
housing residents.
--Describe the significant employment barriers which characterize this 
target group, including the process for identifying those participants 
who are least job ready.

    Note: An adequate analysis of employment barriers of the target 
group will be a critical factor in evaluating the need for grant 
assistance and the appropriateness of the proposed plan of services.

Analysis of Employment Opportunities

    Information provided in this section will be evaluated 
predominantly under the ``Relative Need'' criteria.

--Identify the types of occupations in the local area which are being 
targeted as appropriate employment opportunities for the target group 
of this project.
--Describe the justification for the selection of the occupations in 
terms of their availability and the adequacy of expected placement wage 
and post-placement earnings potential to achieve self-sufficiency.

Service Strategy

    Information provided in this section will be evaluated 
predominantly under the ``Innovation'' and ``Outcomes'' criteria.
--Identify the specific job readiness, placement (in both subsidized 
and unsubsidized employment), post-employment, job retention and/or 
support services to be provided with competitive grant funds as well as 
services to be leveraged from other sources.
--Describe the rationale for planned enrollments in activities in terms 
of the employment barriers, infrastructure deficiencies and employment 
opportunities previously identified above.
--Describe what individual support services, such as mentoring and case 
management, will be used to maintain participants in the program.

Service Process

    Information provided in this section will be evaluated 
predominantly under the ``Innovation'' and ``Outcomes'' criteria.

--Describe the comprehensive service process that will be available to 
participants, and identify the organizations which will be involved in 
providing specific services/activities. [A process flowchart and/or 
service matrix may be used to provide this description.] The 
description should specify what elements of the service strategy are 
already available in the community, whether through the WtW formula 
program, the TANF program or from other sources, as well as the 
elements or services that will be funded through the WtW competitive 
grant award.
--Describe the specific methods which will be used by the grantee and 
the local TANF agency to coordinate and work jointly in providing the 
following services: Outreach,

[[Page 4017]]

recruitment, and referral of appropriate recipients for assistance 
through the project; assessment of skills and identification of 
specific employment barriers; counseling and case management; and 
support services.
--Applicants are strongly encouraged to develop good linkages to the 
local TANF agency in the development of their proposal. Although not 
required, applicants are encouraged to consult with and, where 
possible, to share their proposals with the local TANF agency to 
incorporate that agency's perspective into their proposed service 
process.
--Where vouchers for services are to be used, describe the process by 
which vouchers will be distributed and redeemed (in compliance with 20 
CFR Sec. 645.230(a)(3)), including who will be eligible, how amounts of 
vouchers will be determined, and how the grantee will ensure that 
quality services are being provided.

Integration of Resources

    Information provided in this section will be evaluated 
predominantly under the ``Local Collaboration and Sustainability'' 
criteria.

--Identify specific financial and other resources and organizational/
service provider capabilities which are being contributed to provide 
the full range of assistance to the identified target group for the 
project. At a minimum, describe the coordination and contributions of 
local JTPA service providers, local TANF providers, and local housing 
and transportation authorities. In developing their plans, applicants 
are encouraged to be mindful of their obligations not to interfere with 
collective bargaining rights or agreements or to displace employees.

    [Note: There is no matching or cost sharing requirement for WtW 
competitive grants.]

--Describe the process that will be used to maintain and expand the 
service structure in the local area and engage new partners after 
receipt of WtW competitive grant funds.
--Describe how the project will develop a sustainable capacity in the 
local community to effectively move welfare recipients into permanent 
jobs and to foster the long-term self-sufficiency of the target 
population. It is expected that project services will provide 
assistance oriented towards long-term solutions. It is also expected 
that the need for grant funds to provide this assistance will diminish 
over time, specifically in the latter stages of the grant performance 
period.

Employer Support

    Information provided in this section will be evaluated 
predominantly under the ``Local Collaboration and Sustainability'' 
criteria.

--Describe the specific responsibilities and approaches for developing 
relationships with and support of area employers to generate a 
sufficient number of unsubsidized employment opportunities for the 
target group. Specifically describe how employers will be encouraged to 
customize employment opportunities to meet work-related needs (e.g., 
child care, flexible work schedules) of recipients.
--Identify the employers in the local area who have made commitments to 
the project and describe the types of commitments made (e.g., number 
and types of jobs, contribution of employer resources for post-hire 
support services and/or training).

Planned Outcomes

    Information provided in this section will be evaluated 
predominantly under the ``Outcomes'' criteria.

--Identify and justify planned performance for the comprehensive 
service strategy on the following measures: Number of participants to 
be placed into unsubsidized employment; average earnings at placement 
in unsubsidized employment; expected average earnings one year after 
placement in unsubsidized employment; and cost per placement in 
unsubsidized employment.

    The application may include other measures and planned performance 
levels as deemed appropriate by the applicant. If these are included, 
the applicant should briefly describe their relevance to the project.

Implementation Plan

    Information provided in this section will be evaluated 
predominantly under the ``Outcomes'' and ``Innovation'' criteria.

--Identify the critical activities, time frames and responsibilities 
for effectively implementing the project within the first 60 days after 
the award of the grant.
--Include an implementation schedule showing the number of 
participants, enrollments in allowable activities, placements in 
unsubsidized employment and terminations over the life of the grant.

Project Management Plan

    Information provided in this section will be evaluated 
predominantly under the ``Demonstrated Capability'' and ``Innovation'' 
criteria.
    Applicants must be able to document that they have systems capable 
of satisfying the administrative and grant management requirements for 
WtW grants as defined in 20 CFR Part 645.

--Include a project organizational chart which identifies the 
organizations, and staff, with key management responsibilities and the 
specific responsibilities of each organization;
--Describe the specific experience of the applicant and other key 
organizations involved in the project in serving individuals with 
significant barriers to employment. The information should include at a 
minimum specific projects or grants, a comparison of the 
characteristics of individuals served to the target group for this 
project, and the employment outcomes which were achieved. In addition, 
applicants should provide the names and addresses of their last three 
grantors, public and/or private, from which applicants received 
funding. The Department of Labor reserves the right to contact any or 
all of these funding organizations or to request additional information 
from the applicant regarding past performance as part of a 
responsibility review process, or if the Department is concerned about 
the applicants' financial responsibility or capability to manage grant 
funds.
--As appropriate, describe how current or former welfare recipients 
will be used to provide services.
--Describe the procedures which will be used to obtain feedback from 
participants and other appropriate parties on the responsiveness and 
effectiveness of the services provided.
--Applicants are advised that the Department of Labor may use 
information included in proposals to document the nature of the WtW 
applicant pool, as well as the range and depth of perceived service 
needs in the WtW population.

Innovation

    Information provided in this section will be evaluated 
predominantly under the ``Innovation'' criteria.
    Recipients of WtW competitive grants are expected to use creativity 
and innovation to help eligible individuals obtain long-term 
unsubsidized employment and economic self-sufficiency. The application 
should describe how the proposed approach represents an innovative 
method for

[[Page 4018]]

achieving the employment objectives of the project. Proposed strategies 
should represent an improvement over, or a variation on, approaches 
that have traditionally been used in the project service area to assist 
welfare recipients and other low-income unemployed individuals.
    Grant recipients are also expected to share knowledge which they 
develop through the use of innovative approaches. Applicants should 
describe how they will report lessons learned in the course of the 
grant implementation, and further, describe their plans for 
disseminating the knowledge they have gained.

Additional Requirements for Community Saturation Projects

    Information provided in this section will be evaluated 
predominantly under the ``Outcomes'' and ``Innovation'' criteria.

--Describe why a project employing a saturation strategy is appropriate 
for the project service area and target group.
--Describe the feasibility of a saturation strategy for the project 
service area and target group (e.g., based on available employment 
opportunities).
--Identify the local partners who will be involved in implementing the 
saturation strategy, the services to be provided and the dollar value 
of the contribution from each.

Additional Requirements for Projects Targeting High Priority 
Populations

    Information provided in this section will be evaluated 
predominantly under the ``Relative Need'' and ``Local Collaboration and 
Sustainability'' criteria.
    For those projects targeting services to noncustodial parents, 
individuals with disabilities, individuals requiring substance abuse 
treatment, victims of domestic violence or individuals with limited 
English proficiency:

--Describe the specific services to be provided that address the unique 
characteristics of the targeted population;
--Describe the specific partner organizations who have experience 
serving the targeted population or who will be key to the recruitment 
of the population into the project; and
--Describe the prevalence of the targeted population within the 
eligible WtW population in the local area(s) to be served by the 
project.

Appendix A: Definitions of Key Terms

    City with Large Concentration of Poverty--Any county that 
contains an urban center of more than 50,000 people with a poverty 
rate of greater than 7.5 percent.
    Community Saturation Strategy--Projects that propose to serve 
100 percent of the WtW eligible population within a designated 
service area, i.e., the community is completely ``saturated'' with 
services.
    Private Entity--Any organization, public or private, which is 
neither a PIC nor a political subdivision of a State.
    Private Industry Council (PIC)--from Sec. 645.120 of the WtW 
Regulations--A Private Industry Council established under Section 
102 of the Job Training Partnership Act, which performs the 
functions authorized at Section 103 of the JTPA.
    Political Subdivision--A unit of general purpose local 
government, as provided for in State laws and/or Constitution, which 
has the power to levy taxes and spend funds and which also has 
general corporate and police powers.
    Rural Area--(1) Any county that does not contain an urban center 
of more than 50,000 people, and where at least 50 percent of the 
geographical area of the county has a population density of less 
than 100 persons per square mile; or (2) in counties where there is 
an urban center, a rural area within the county that constitutes, or 
is part of, a distinct rural labor market.
    Individual with a disability--A person with a physical or mental 
impairment as defined in Section 3 of the Americans with 
Disabilities Act of 1990 (42 U.S.C. 12102).

Appendix B: Required Forms

    (1) Application Cover Sheet
    (2) Application for Federal Assistance (Standard Form 424)

    Note: In completing the Standard Form 424, the applicant should 
indicate in Item 11 of the form whether the project is to operate in 
a city with a large concentration of poverty or in a rural area; 
identify the EC/EZ included in the project service area, if 
applicable; and identify any of the areas of interest identified in 
the announcement which are addressed by the project.

    (3) Budget Information Sheet
    (4) Project Synopsis Form

BILLING CODE 4510-30-P

[[Page 4019]]

[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TN26JA99.007



[[Page 4020]]

[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TN26JA99.008



[[Page 4021]]

[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TN26JA99.009



[[Page 4022]]

[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TN26JA99.010



[[Page 4023]]

[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TN26JA99.011



[FR Doc. 99-1834 Filed 1-25-99; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4510-30-C