[Federal Register Volume 73, Number 61 (Friday, March 28, 2008)]
[Pages 16704-16706]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E8-6349]



Bureau of Indian Affairs

Grant Availability to Federally Recognized Indian Tribes for 
Projects Implementing Traffic Safety on Indian Reservations

AGENCY: Bureau of Indian Affairs, Interior.

ACTION: Notice.


SUMMARY: In accordance with the Surface Transportation and Uniform 
Relocation Assistance Act of 1987, and as authorized by the Secretary 
of Transportation, the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) intends to make 
funds available to federally recognized Indian tribes on an annual 
basis for implementing traffic safety projects, which are designed to 
reduce the number of traffic crashes, death, injuries, and property 
damage within Indian Country. All project applications received will be 
reviewed and selected on a competitive basis. This notice informs 
Indian tribes that grant funds are available and that information 
packets are being mailed to all tribal leaders on the latest Tribal 
Leaders list that is compiled by the BIA. A copy of the Application 
Packet can also be obtained by contacting the BIA Indian Highway Safety 

DATES: Request for funds must be received by May 1, of each program 
year. Requests not in the office of the Indian Highway Safety Program 
by the close of the business day on May 1, will not be considered and 
will be returned unopened. The information packets will be distributed 
to tribal leaders by the end of January of each program year.

ADDRESSES: Each tribe must submit its request to the BIA Division of 
Safety and Risk Management, Attention: Indian Highway Safety Program 
Coordinator, 1011 Indian School, NW., Suite 331, Albuquerque, New 
Mexico 87104.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Tribes should direct questions to 
Patricia Abeyta, Coordinator, Indian Highway Safety Program, or to Paul 
Holley, Program Administrator, Bureau of Indian Affairs, 1011 Indian 
School, NW., Suite 331, Albuquerque, New Mexico 87104, telephone number 
505-563-5371, or 505-563-5373.


    The Federal Aid Highway Act of 1973 (Pub. L. 93-87) provides for 
the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) funding to assist Indian 
tribes in implementing Highway Safety projects. The projects must be 
designed to reduce the number of motor vehicle traffic crashes and 
their resulting fatalities, injuries, and property damage on Indian 
reservations and within Indian communities. All federally recognized 
Indian tribes with qualifying Highway Safety projects are eligible to 
receive this assistance. All tribes receiving awards of program funds 
are reimbursed for eligible costs incurred under the terms of 23 U.S.C. 
402 and subsequent amendments.


    For the purposes of application of the Act, Indian reservations are 
collectively considered a ``State'' and the Secretary of the Interior 
is considered the ``Governor of a State.'' The Secretary of the 
Interior delegated the authority to administer the programs for all the 
Indian nations in the United States to the Assistant Secretary--Indian 
Affairs. The Assistant Secretary--Indian Affairs further delegated the 
responsibility for administration of the Indian Highway Safety Program 
to the Central Office, Division of Safety and Risk Management (DSRM) 
located in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The Chief, DSRM, as Program 
Administrator of the Indian Highway Safety Program, has staff members 
available to provide program and technical assistance to Indian tribes.

[[Page 16705]]

The Indian Highway Safety Program maintains contact with the DOT with 
respect to program approval, funding and receiving technical 
assistance. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) 
is responsible for ensuring that the Indian Highway Safety Program is 
carried out in accordance with the 23 CFR part 1200 and other 
applicable Federal statutes and regulations.

National Priority Program Areas

    The following highway safety program areas have been identified as 
priority program areas eligible for funding under 23 CFR 1205.3 on 
tribal lands.
    a. Impaired driving;
    b. Occupant protection;
    c. Traffic records.
    Other fundable program areas may be considered based upon well 
documented problem identification from the tribes.

Indian Highway Safety Program Funding Areas

    Proposals are being solicited for the following program areas:
    1. Impaired Driving: Programs directed at reducing injuries and 
death attributed to impaired driving on the reservations such as: 
Selective Traffic Enforcement Programs (STEP) to apprehend impaired 
drivers; specialized law enforcement training (such as Standardized 
Field Sobriety Testing); public information programs on alcohol/other 
drug use and driving; education programs for convicted DWI/DUI 
offenders; various youth alcohol education programs promoting traffic 
safety; and programs or projects directed toward judicial training. 
Proposals for projects that enhance the development and the 
implementation of innovative programs to combat impaired driving are 
also solicited.
    2. Occupant Protection: Programs directed at decreasing injuries 
and deaths attributed to the lack of safety belt and child-restraint 
usage such as: surveys to determine usage rates and to identify high-
risk non-users; comprehensive programs to promote correct usage of 
child safety seats and other occupant restraints; enforcement of safety 
belt ordinances or laws; specialized training (such as Operation Kids, 
Traffic Occupant Protection Strategies [TOPS]); and Standardized Child 
passenger Safety Technician Training and evaluations.
    3. Traffic Records: Programs to help the tribes develop or update 
electronic traffic records systems which will assist with analysis of 
crash information, causational factors, and support joint efforts with 
other agencies to improve the tribe's traffic records.

Project Guidelines

    The BIA will send information packets to the tribal leaders of each 
federally recognized Indian tribe by the end of January of each program 
year. Upon receiving the information packet, each tribe, to be 
eligible, must prepare a proposed project based on the following 
    1. Program Planning: Program shall be based upon the highway safety 
problems identified and the goals/objectives measures selected by the 
    2. Problem Identification: Highway traffic safety problems shall be 
based upon accurate tribal data. This data should show problems and/or 
trend analysis and should be available in tribal enforcement and 
traffic crash records. The data must accompany the proposal.
    3. Countermeasures Selection: Once tribal traffic safety problems 
are identified, appropriate countermeasures to solve or reduce the 
problem(s) must be identified.
    4. Objectives/Performance Measures: List of objectives and 
measurable goals, within the National Priority Program Areas, based on 
highway safety problems identified by the tribe, must be included in 
each proposal, expressed in clearly defined, time-framed, and 
measurable terms. (Example: To decrease alcohol related motor vehicle 
crashes by --percent from the 2005 number of--to--by the end of fiscal 
year 2008). Performance indicators that enable the Indian Highway 
Safety Program to track progress, from a specific baseline, must 
accompany each goal. Performance measures should be aggressive but 
    5. Line Item Budget: The activities to be funded must be outlined 
in detail according to the following object groups: personnel services; 
travel and training; operating costs; and equipment. Because of limited 
funding, this office will limit indirect costs to a maximum of 15 
percent; however, all tribes applying for grants must attach a copy of 
the tribe's indirect cost rate to the application.
    6. Evaluation Plan: Evaluation is the process of determining 
whether a highway safety activity has accomplished its objectives. The 
tribe must include, in the funding request, a plan explaining how the 
evaluation will be accomplished and identify the criteria to be used in 
measuring performance.
    7. Funding Requirements: With the enactment of the Safe, 
Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act--A Legacy 
for Users (SAFETEA-LU), the BIA Indian Highway Safety Program, to 
certify, on behalf of the tribes, that the program will meet certain 
conditions and comply with all applicable rules and regulations for 
administering a highway safety program. In addition to program 
oversight and technical assistance, the BIA must certify that it will 
implement the following activities in support of national highway 
safety goals:
    a. Participate in the national law enforcement mobilizations;
    b. Encourage sustained enforcement of impaired driving, occupant 
protection, and speeding;
    c. Conduct an annual safety belt survey in accordance with criteria 
established by the Secretary to measure safety belt usage rates;
    d. Develop data systems to provide timely and effective data 
analysis to support allocation of highway traffic safety resources.
    8. In order to comply with the provisions of SAFETEA-LU and the 
State Certifications and Assurances, the BIA Indian Highway Safety 
Program will allocate funds on behalf of the tribes to implement the 
provisions listed in (7) above. Copies of the State Certifications and 
Assurances are available upon request, or at: http://www.nhtsa.dot.gov/nhtsa/whatsup/tea21/GrantMan/HTML/StateCertifications_8-05.html.
    9. Project Length: Traffic safety program funding is designed 
primarily as the source of invention and motivation. This program is 
not intended for long term financial support of continuing and on-going 
    10. Certification Regarding Drug-Free Workplace Requirement: Indian 
tribes receiving highway safety grants through the Indian Highway 
Safety Program must certify that they will maintain a drug-free 
    11. Certification Regarding Lobbying: Indian tribes receiving 
highway safety grants through the Indian Highway Safety Program must 
certify that they will not use any of the direct funds to pay for, by 
or on behalf of the tribes, to any person for influencing or attempting 
to influence an officer or employee of any agency, a member of 
Congress, an officer or employee of Congress, or an employee of a 
member of Congress in connection with the awarding of any Federal 
contract, the making of any Federal grant, the making of any Federal 
loan, the entering into of any cooperative agreement, and the 
extension, continuation, renewal, amendment, or modification of any 
Federal contract, grant, loan, or

[[Page 16706]]

cooperative agreement. (None of the funds under this program can be 
used for any activity specifically designed to urge or influence a 
State or local legislator to favor or oppose the adoption of any 
specific legislative proposal pending before any State or local 
legislative body.)

Submission Deadline

    Each tribe must send its funding request to the BIA Indian Highway 
Safety Program offices in Albuquerque, New Mexico by the close of 
business on May 1, of each program year.

Selection Criteria

    Each funding request will be reviewed and evaluated by the BIA 
Indian Highway Safety Program staff and a designated selection 
committee. Each member, by assigning points to the following five 
criteria, will rank each of the proposals based on the following 
    Criteria 1: the strength of the Problem Identification based on 
verifiable, current, and applicable documentation of the traffic safety 
problem (40 points maximum).
    Criteria 2: the quality of the proposed solution plan based on 
aggressive but attainable Performance Measures, time-framed action 
plan, cost eligibility, amount, if any, of in-kind funding/support 
provided by the tribe, and necessity and the reasonableness of the 
budget (30 points maximum).
    Criteria 3: details on how the tribe will evaluate and show 
progress on its performance measures regarding the Evaluation component 
(20 points maximum).
    Criteria 4: documentation in support of the submitting tribe's 
qualification, commitment, and community involvement in traffic safety 
should be included (10 points maximum).
    Criteria 5: tribes that have been funded before are eligible for 
bonus points (up to 10 extra points) if all reporting requirements have 
been met in previous years.

Notification on Non-Selection

    The Program Administrator will notify each tribe of non-selection.

Uniform Administrative Requirements for Grant-in-Aid

    Uniform grant administration procedures have been established on a 
national basis for all grant-in-aid programs by DOT and the NHTSA, 
under 49 CFR part 18, ``Uniform Administrative Requirements for Grants 
and Cooperative Agreements to State and Local Government.'' The NHTSA 
and the FHWA have codified uniform procedures for State Highway Safety 
Programs in 23 CFR parts 1200, 1205 and 1251. The OMB Circular A-87 and 
the ``Highway Safety Grant Funding Policy for NHTSA/FHWA Field 
Administered Grants'' are the established cost principles applicable to 
grants and contracts through BIA and with tribal governments. A copy of 
the Grant Funding Policy document can be obtained from the BIA Indian 
Highway Safety Program office or at: http://www.nhtsa.dot.gov/nhtsa/whatsup/tea21/GrantMan/HTML/01_GrantFundPolicy.html. It is the 
responsibility of the BIA Indian Highway Safety Program office to 
establish operating procedures consistent with the applicable 
provisions of these rules.

Standards for Financial Management System

    Tribal financial systems must provide for:
    1. Current and complete disclosure of project actions;
    2. Accurate and timely recordkeeping;
    3. Accountability and control of all grants funds and equipment;
    4. Comparison of actual expenditures with budgeted amounts and;
    5. Documentation of accounting records.
    Auditing of Highway Safety Projects will be included in the tribal 
A-133 single audit requirement. Copies of tribal audits must be 
available for inspection by the highway safety program staff. Tribes 
must provide monthly program status reports and a corresponding 
reimbursement claim to the Coordinator, BIA Indian Highway Safety 
program, 1011 Indian School Road, NW., Suite 331, Albuquerque, New 
Mexico 87104, in order to be reimbursed for program costs. These will 
be submitted no later than 10-working days beyond the reporting month.

Project Monitoring

    During the program year, it is the responsibility of the BIA Indian 
Highway Safety Program office to review the implementation of tribal 
traffic safety plans and programs, monitor the progress of their 
activities and expenditures, and provide technical assistance as 
needed. This assistance may be on-site, by telephone, and/or a review 
of monthly progress claims.

Project Evaluation

    The 23 CFR 1200.33 sets out the minimum information that must be 
contained in the annual report that is required to be submitted to 
NHTSA. The BIA will conduct an annual performance evaluation for each 
Highway Safety Project funded. Pursuant to Sec.  1200.33, the 
evaluation will measure the actual accomplishments to the planned 
activity, and how the project and activities funded contributed to the 
overall goal of the Indian Highway Safety Program. Program staff will 
evaluate progress from baseline data as reported by the tribe. The BIA 
Indian Highway Safety Program staff will evaluate the project on-site 
at the discretion of the Indian Highway Safety Program Administrator.

    Dated: March 14, 2008.
Carl J. Artman,
Assistant Secretary--Indian Affairs.
 [FR Doc. E8-6349 Filed 3-27-08; 8:45 am]