[Federal Register Volume 80, Number 140 (Wednesday, July 22, 2015)]
[Notices]
[Pages 43407-43413]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2015-17996]



[[Page 43407]]

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

DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION


Applications for New Awards; Independent Living Services for 
Older Individuals Who Are Blind--Independent Living Services for Older 
Individuals Who Are Blind Training and Technical Assistance Program

AGENCY: Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services, 
Department of Education.

ACTION: Notice.

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

    Overview Information: Independent Living Services for Older 
Individuals Who Are Blind--Independent Living Services for Older 
Individuals Who Are Blind Training and Technical Assistance Program 
Notice inviting applications for new awards for fiscal year (FY) 2015.

Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number: 84.177Z.


DATES: 
    Applications Available: July 22, 2015.
    Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: August 21, 2015.

Full Text of Announcement

I. Funding Opportunity Description

    Purpose of Program: The purpose of this program is to provide 
training and technical assistance (TA) to designated State agencies 
(DSAs) (the State agencies that provide vocational rehabilitation 
services to individuals who are blind) that receive grant funding under 
the Independent Living Services for Older Individuals who are Blind 
(OIB) program and to other service providers that receive OIB program 
funding from DSAs to provide services to consumers. Such training and 
TA is designed to improve the administration, operation, and 
performance of the OIB program.
    Priority: We are establishing this priority for the FY 2015 grant 
competition only, in accordance with section 437(d)(1) of the General 
Education Provisions Act (GEPA), 20 U.S.C. 1232(d)(1).
    Absolute Priority: This priority is an absolute priority. Under 34 
CFR 75.105(c)(3), we consider only applications that meet this 
priority.
    This priority is:
    Independent Living Services for Older Individuals Who Are Blind 
(OIB) Training and Technical Assistance.
    Background:
    The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), enacted in 
July of 2014, made significant changes to the Rehabilitation Act of 
1973 (the Act), including adding provisions to the OIB program that 
require the reservation of funds to support training and technical 
assistance. In particular, section 751A of the Act requires the 
Commissioner of the Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA) to 
reserve not less than 1.8 percent and not more than 2 percent of the 
funds appropriated to the OIB program to provide training and technical 
assistance to DSAs or other providers of OIB services that receive OIB 
program funds.
    The purpose of the OIB program is to: (1) Provide independent 
living (IL) services to older individuals who are blind; (2) conduct 
activities that will improve or expand services for these individuals; 
and (3) conduct activities to help improve public understanding of 
these individuals' challenges. An ``older individual who is blind'' is 
an individual age 55 or older whose significant visual impairment makes 
competitive employment extremely difficult to attain but for whom 
independent living goals are feasible. Through these services and 
activities, the program seeks to improve independent living options for 
older individuals who are blind and increase their independence and 
self-sufficiency.
    To help determine funding priorities, section 751A of the Act 
requires RSA to conduct a survey of DSAs that receive OIB program 
grants to determine their training and TA needs. In response to this 
requirement, RSA added a new section to the annual report submitted by 
DSAs (Section VII Training and Technical Assistance) to obtain this 
information.
    Survey results from the most recent annual report submitted by each 
of the OIB program grantees identified the need for training and TA in 
the following areas: Fiscal and management practices, annual report 
(Form RSA 7-OB) reporting requirements, data analysis and program 
performance, service provision and service delivery, promising 
practices, resources and information, and outreach.
    Priority:
    This priority supports a cooperative agreement to establish an OIB 
Training and Technical Assistance Center (Center) to provide sustained 
training and TA--generalized, targeted, and intensive--to DSAs funded 
under the OIB program and to any service providers the DSAs fund to 
provide services directly to consumers. The Center will develop and 
provide training and TA to DSAs and other service providers funded 
under the OIB program in the following general topic areas:
    (a) Community outreach;
    (b) Best practices in the provision and delivery of services;
    (c) Program performance, including data reporting and analysis; and
    (d) Financial and management practices, including practices to 
ensure compliance with grant administration requirements.

Project Activities

    To meet the requirements of this priority, the Center must, at a 
minimum, conduct the following activities:
    (a) Annually provide intensive training and TA to a minimum of 
three DSAs and other service providers on the topic areas in this 
priority. The TA must be:
    (1) Consistent with the project activities and tailored to the 
specific needs and challenges of the DSA or other service provider 
receiving the intensive training and TA;
    (2) Provided under an agreement with each DSA or other service 
provider that, at a minimum, details the purpose, intended outcomes, 
and requirements for subsequent evaluation of the training and TA; and
    (3) Assessed 90 days after completion to ensure that DSAs and other 
service providers receiving intensive training and TA are applying it 
effectively and to address any issues or challenges in its 
implementation.
    (b) Provide a range of targeted and general training and TA 
products and services on the general topic areas in this priority. The 
training and TA should include, at a minimum, the following activities:
    (1) Provide a minimum of two Webinars or video conferences on each 
of the topic areas in this priority to describe and disseminate 
information about emerging and best practices in each area.
    (2) Develop new information technology (IT) platforms or systems, 
or modify existing platforms and systems, as follows:
    (i) Develop and maintain a state-of-the-art IT platform sufficient 
to support Webinars, teleconferences, video conferences, and other 
virtual methods of dissemination of information and training and TA;
    (ii) Develop and maintain a state-of-the-art archiving and 
dissemination system that is open and available to the public and that 
provides a central location for later use of training and TA products, 
including course curricula, audiovisual materials, Webinars, examples 
of emerging and best practices related to the topic areas in this 
priority, and any other training and TA products.


[[Page 43408]]


    Note:  All products produced by the Center must meet government 
and industry-recognized standards for accessibility.

    (c) Conduct outreach to DSAs so that they are aware of and can 
participate in training and TA activities.
    (d) Establish a community of practice \1\ that will act as a 
vehicle for communication, an exchange of information among DSAs and 
other service providers, and a forum for sharing the results of 
training and TA projects that are in progress or have been completed.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \1\ For more information on communities of practice, see 
www.tadnet.org/pages/510.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (e) Communicate and coordinate, on an ongoing basis, with other 
federally funded training and TA projects, particularly Department-
funded projects and the Training and Technical Assistance grant for 
Centers for Independent Living supported by the Department of Health 
and Human Services, to ensure that training and TA activities are 
complementary and non-duplicative;
    (f) Conduct an evaluation to determine the impact of the Center's 
training and TA on the DSAs and other service providers that received 
the Center's services.

Application Requirements

    To be funded under this priority, applicants must meet the 
application and administrative requirements in this priority. RSA 
encourages innovative approaches to meet these requirements, which are:
    (a) Demonstrate, in the narrative section of the application under 
``Significance of the Project,'' how the proposed project will--
    (1) Address DSAs' capacity to implement effectively an OIB program. 
To meet this requirement, the applicant must:
    (i) Demonstrate knowledge of emerging and best practices in the 
topic areas in this priority;
    (ii) Demonstrate knowledge of current RSA guidance and State and 
Federal initiatives designed to improve the functioning of grant 
programs in general, the OIB program in particular, and independent 
living outcomes for older individuals who are blind; and
    (iii) Present information about the difficulties that DSAs and 
service providers have encountered in implementing effective OIB 
programs.
    (2) Increase both the efficiency and effectiveness of the OIB 
program.
    (b) Demonstrate, in the narrative section of the application under 
``Quality of Project Services,'' how the proposed project will--
    (1) Achieve its goals, objectives, and intended outcomes. To meet 
this requirement, the applicant must provide--
    (i) Measurable intended project outcomes;
    (ii) A plan for how the proposed project will achieve its intended 
outcomes;
    (iii) A plan for communicating and coordinating with key staff in 
DSAs and other service providers; and
    (iv) A draft training module for one of the topic areas in this 
priority to serve as an example of how participants would be trained in 
that area. The module is a required attachment in the application and 
must include, at a minimum, the following:
    (A) The goals and objectives of this training module;
    (B) A specific list of what participants should know and be able to 
do as a result of successfully completing the module;
    (C) Up-to-date resources, publications, applicable laws and 
regulations, and other materials that may be used to supplement the 
module;
    (D) Exercises that will provide an opportunity for application of 
the module's subject matter; and
    (E) A description of how participant knowledge, skills, and 
abilities will be measured.
    (2) Use a logic model to develop project plans and activities that 
includes, at a minimum, the goals, activities, outputs, and outcomes of 
the proposed project.

    Note: For purposes of this priority, a ``logic model'' is 
defined in 34 CFR 77.1(c). The following Web sites provide more 
information on logic models: www.researchutilization.org/matrix/logicmodel_resource3c.html and www.tadnet.org/pages/589.

    (3) Be based on current research and make use of emerging and 
promising practices, and evidence-based practices, where available. To 
meet this requirement, the applicant must describe--
    (i) The current research on the emerging and promising practices in 
the topic areas in this priority; and
    (ii) How the Center will incorporate current research and promising 
and evidence-based practices, including research about adult learning 
principles and implementation science, in the development and delivery 
of its products and services.
    (4) Develop products and provide services that are of high quality 
and sufficient intensity and duration to achieve the intended outcomes 
of the proposed project. To address this requirement, the applicant 
must describe--
    (i) Its proposed approach to universal, general training and TA; 
\2\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \2\ For the purposes of this priority, ``universal, general 
training and technical assistance'' means technical assistance and 
information provided to independent users through their own 
initiative, resulting in minimal interaction with technical 
assistance center staff and including one-time, invited or offered 
conference presentations by technical assistance center staff. This 
category of technical assistance also includes information or 
products, such as newsletters, guidebooks, or research syntheses, 
downloaded from the technical assistance center's Web site by 
independent users. Brief communications by technical assistance 
center staff with recipients, either by telephone or email, are also 
considered universal, general technical assistance.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (ii) Its proposed approach to targeted, specialized training and 
TA,\3\ which must identify--
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \3\ For the purposes of this priority, ``targeted, specialized 
training and technical assistance'' means technical assistance based 
on needs common to multiple recipients and not extensively 
individualized. A relationship is established between the technical 
assistance recipient and one or more technical assistance center 
staff. This category of technical assistance includes one-time, 
labor-intensive events, such as facilitating strategic planning or 
hosting regional or national conferences. It can also include 
episodic, less labor-intensive events that extend over a period of 
time, such as facilitating a series of conference calls on single or 
multiple topics that are designed around the needs of the 
recipients. Facilitating communities of practice can also be 
considered targeted, specialized technical assistance.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (A) The intended recipients of the products and services under this 
approach, including the categories of personnel that would be receiving 
the training and TA;
    (B) Its proposed medium for providing targeted, specialized 
training and TA; and
    (C) Its proposed methodology for determining topics for the 
targeted, specialized training and TA.
    (iii) Its proposed approach to intensive, sustained training and 
TA,\4\ which must identify--
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \4\ For the purposes of this priority, ``intensive, sustained 
training and TA'' means training and TA services often provided on-
site and requiring a stable, ongoing relationship between the TA 
center staff and the TA recipient. ``TA services'' are defined as 
negotiated series of activities designed to reach a valued outcome. 
This category of TA should result in changes to policy, program, 
practice, or operations that support increased recipient capacity or 
improved outcomes at one or more systems levels.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (A) Its proposed approach to identifying recipients for intensive, 
sustained training and TA products and services;
    (B) Its proposed approach to assessing the training and TA needs of 
recipients, including their ability to respond effectively to the 
training and TA; and
    (C) Its proposed methodology for providing intensive, sustained 
training and TA.

[[Page 43409]]

    (5) Develop products and implement services to maximize the 
project's efficiency. To address this requirement, the applicant must 
describe--
    (i) How the proposed project will use technology to achieve the 
intended project outcomes; and
    (ii) With whom the proposed project will collaborate and the 
intended outcomes of this collaboration.
    (c) Demonstrate, in the narrative section of the application under 
``Quality of Evaluation Plan,'' how the proposed project will--
    (1) Measure and track the effectiveness of the training and TA 
provided. To meet this requirement, the applicant must describe its 
proposed approach to--
    (i) Collecting data on the effectiveness of each training and TA 
activity from DSAs and other service providers, or other sources, as 
appropriate; and
    (ii) Analyzing the collection of data to determine the 
effectiveness of each training and TA activity using any proposed 
standards or targets for determining effectiveness.
    (2) Collect and analyze data on specific and measurable goals, 
objectives, and progress on intended outcomes of the project to measure 
and track the effectiveness of the training and TA provided. To address 
this requirement, the applicant must describe--
    (i) Its proposed evaluation methodologies, including instruments, 
data collection methods, and analyses;
    (ii) Its proposed standards or targets for determining 
effectiveness;
    (iii) How it will use the evaluation results to examine the 
effectiveness of its implementation and its progress toward achieving 
the intended outcomes; and
    (iv) How the methods of evaluation will produce quantitative and 
qualitative data that demonstrate whether the project and individual 
training and TA activities achieved their intended outcomes.
    (d) Demonstrate, in the narrative section of the application under 
``Quality of Project Personnel,'' how--
    (1) The proposed project will encourage applications for employment 
from persons who are members of groups that have traditionally been 
underrepresented based on race, color, national origin, gender, age, or 
disability, as appropriate; and
    (2) The proposed key project personnel, consultants, and 
subcontractors have the qualifications and experience to provide 
training and TA to DSAs and other service providers in each of the 
topic areas in this priority and to achieve the project's intended 
outcomes.
    (e) Demonstrate, in the narrative section of the application under 
``Adequacy of Project Resources,'' how--
    (1) The applicant and any key partners have adequate resources to 
carry out the proposed activities; and
    (2) The proposed costs are reasonable in relation to the 
anticipated results and benefits.
    (f) Demonstrate, in the narrative section of the application under 
``Quality of the Management Plan,'' how--
    (1) The proposed management plan will ensure that the project's 
intended outcomes will be achieved on time and within budget. To 
address this requirement, the applicant must describe--
    (i) Clearly defined responsibilities for key project personnel, 
consultants, and subcontractors, as applicable; and
    (ii) Timelines and milestones for accomplishing the project tasks.
    (2) Key project personnel and any consultants and subcontractors 
will be allocated to the project and how these allocations are 
appropriate and adequate to achieve the project's intended outcomes, 
including an assurance that such personnel will have adequate 
availability to ensure timely communications with stakeholders and RSA;
    (3) The proposed management plan will ensure that the products and 
services provided are of high quality; and
    (4) The proposed project will benefit from a diversity of 
perspectives, including those of State and local personnel, training 
and TA providers, policy makers, OIB program consumers, and intended 
beneficiaries of the training, among others, in its development and 
operation.
    Waiver of Proposed Rulemaking: Under the Administrative Procedure 
Act (5 U.S.C. 553) the Department generally offers interested parties 
the opportunity to comment on proposed priorities. Section 437(d)(1) of 
GEPA, however, allows the Secretary to exempt from rulemaking 
requirements, regulations governing the first grant competition under a 
new or substantially revised program authority. This is the first grant 
competition for this program under section 751A of the Act, as amended 
by WIOA (29 U.S.C. 796j-1), and therefore qualifies for this exemption. 
In order to ensure timely grant awards, the Secretary has decided to 
forego public comment on the priority under section 437(d)(1) of GEPA. 
This priority will apply to the FY 2015 grant competition only.
    Program Authority: 29 U.S.C. 796j-1.
    Applicable Regulations: (a) The Education Department General 
Administrative Regulations (EDGAR) in 34 CFR parts 75, 77, 79, 81, 82, 
84, and 86. (b) The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Guidelines to 
Agencies on Governmentwide Debarment and Suspension (Nonprocurement) in 
2 CFR part 180, as adopted and amended as regulations of the Department 
in 2 CFR part 3485. (c) The Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost 
Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards in 2 CFR part 
200, as adopted and amended in 2 CFR part 3474.

    Note: The regulations in 34 CFR part 86 apply to institutions of 
higher education only.

II. Award Information

    Type of Award: Cooperative agreement.
    Estimated Available Funds: $596,373.
    Estimated Number of Awards: 1.

    Note: The Department is not bound by any estimates in this 
notice.

    Project Period: Up to 60 months.

III. Eligibility Information

    1. Eligible Applicants: State and public or non-profit agencies and 
organizations and institutions of higher education that have the 
capacity to provide training and TA in the provision of IL services for 
older individuals who are blind and have demonstrated through their 
application a capacity to provide the level of training and TA as 
indicated in the priority section of this notice.
    2. Cost Sharing or Matching: This program does not require cost 
sharing or matching.

IV. Application and Submission Information

    1. Address to Request Application Package: You can obtain an 
application package via the Internet or from the Education Publications 
Center (ED Pubs). To obtain a copy via the Internet, use the following 
address: www.ed.gov/fund/grant/apply/grantapps/index.html.
    To obtain a copy from ED Pubs, write, fax, or call the following: 
ED Pubs, U.S. Department of Education, P.O. Box 22207, Alexandria, VA 
22304. Telephone, toll free: 1-877-433-7827. FAX: (703) 605-6794. If 
you use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD) or a text 
telephone (TTY), call, toll free: 1-877-576-7734.

[[Page 43410]]

    You can contact ED Pubs at its Web site, also: www.EDPubs.gov or at 
its email address: [email protected].
    If you request an application from ED Pubs, be sure to identify 
this program as follows: CFDA number 84.177Z.
    Individuals with disabilities can obtain a copy of the application 
package in an accessible format (e.g., braille, large print, audiotape, 
or compact disc) by contacting the person or team listed under 
Accessible Format in section VIII of this notice.
    2. a. Content and Form of Application Submission:
    Requirements concerning the content of an application, together 
with the forms you must submit, are in the application package for this 
program.
    b. Submission of Proprietary Information:
    Given the types of projects that may be proposed in applications 
for the Independent Living Services for Older Individuals Who Are Blind 
Training and Technical Assistance program, an application may include 
business information that the applicant considers proprietary. The 
Department's regulations define ``business information'' in 34 CFR 
5.11.
    Because the funded applicant's abstract will be made available to 
the public, you may wish to request confidentiality of business 
information.
    Consistent with Executive Order 12600, please designate in your 
application any information that you feel is exempt from disclosure 
under Exemption 4 of the Freedom of Information Act. In the appropriate 
Appendix section of your application, under ``Other Attachments Form,'' 
please list the page number or numbers on which we can find this 
information. For additional information please see 34 CFR 5.11(c).
    3. Submission Dates and Times:
    Applications Available: July 22, 2015.
    Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: August 21, 2015.
    Applications for grants under this program must be submitted 
electronically using the Grants.gov Apply site (Grants.gov). For 
information (including dates and times) about how to submit your 
application electronically, or in paper format by mail or hand delivery 
if you qualify for an exception to the electronic submission 
requirement, please refer to section IV. 7. Other Submission 
Requirements of this notice.
    We do not consider an application that does not comply with the 
deadline requirements.
    Individuals with disabilities who need an accommodation or 
auxiliary aid in connection with the application process should contact 
the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT in section VII 
of this notice. If the Department provides an accommodation or 
auxiliary aid to an individual with a disability in connection with the 
application process, the individual's application remains subject to 
all other requirements and limitations in this notice.
    4. Intergovernmental Review: This competition is subject to 
Executive Order 12372 and the regulations in 34 CFR part 79. However, 
under 34 CFR 79.8(a), we waive intergovernmental review in order to 
make an award by the end of FY 2015.
    5. Funding Restrictions: We reference regulations outlining funding 
restrictions in the Applicable Regulations section of this notice.
    6. Data Universal Numbering System Number, Taxpayer Identification 
Number, and System for Award Management: To do business with the 
Department of Education, you must--
    a. Have a Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number and a 
Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN);
    b. Register both your DUNS number and TIN with the System for Award 
Management (SAM) (formerly the Central Contractor Registry (CCR)), the 
Government's primary registrant database;
    c. Provide your DUNS number and TIN on your application; and
    d. Maintain an active SAM registration with current information 
while your application is under review by the Department and, if you 
are awarded a grant, during the project period.
    You can obtain a DUNS number from Dun and Bradstreet. A DUNS number 
can be created within one to two business days.
    If you are a corporate entity, agency, institution, or 
organization, you can obtain a TIN from the Internal Revenue Service. 
If you are an individual, you can obtain a TIN from the Internal 
Revenue Service or the Social Security Administration. If you need a 
new TIN, please allow 2-5 weeks for your TIN to become active.
    The SAM registration process can take approximately seven business 
days, but may take upwards of several weeks, depending on the 
completeness and accuracy of the data entered into the SAM database by 
an entity. Thus, if you think you might want to apply for Federal 
financial assistance under a program administered by the Department, 
please allow sufficient time to obtain and register your DUNS number 
and TIN. We strongly recommend that you register early.

    Note: Once your SAM registration is active, you will need to 
allow 24 to 48 hours for the information to be available in 
Grants.gov and before you can submit an application through 
Grants.gov.

    If you are currently registered with SAM, you may not need to make 
any changes. However, please make certain that the TIN associated with 
your DUNS number is correct. Also note that you will need to update 
your registration annually. This may take three or more business days.
    Information about SAM is available at www.SAM.gov. To further 
assist you with obtaining and registering your DUNS number and TIN in 
SAM or updating your existing SAM account, we have prepared a SAM.gov 
Tip Sheet, which you can find at: http://www2.ed.gov/fund/grant/apply/sam-faqs.html.
    In addition, if you are submitting your application via Grants.gov, 
you must (1) be designated by your organization as an Authorized 
Organization Representative (AOR); and (2) register yourself with 
Grants.gov as an AOR. Details on these steps are outlined at the 
following Grants.gov Web page: www.grants.gov/web/grants/register.html.
    7. Other Submission Requirements:
    Applications for grants under this program must be submitted 
electronically unless you qualify for an exception to this requirement 
in accordance with the instructions in this section.
    a. Electronic Submission of Applications.
    Applications for grants under the Independent Living Services for 
Older Individuals Who Are Blind Training and Technical Assistance 
program, CFDA number 84.177Z, must be submitted electronically using 
the Governmentwide Grants.gov Apply site at www.Grants.gov. Through 
this site, you will be able to download a copy of the application 
package, complete it offline, and then upload and submit your 
application. You may not email an electronic copy of a grant 
application to us.
    We will reject your application if you submit it in paper format 
unless, as described elsewhere in this section, you qualify for one of 
the exceptions to the electronic submission requirement and submit, no 
later than two weeks before the application deadline date, a written 
statement to the Department that you qualify for one of these 
exceptions. Further information regarding calculation of the date that 
is two weeks before the application deadline date is

[[Page 43411]]

provided later in this section under Exception to Electronic Submission 
Requirement.
    You may access the electronic grant application for the Independent 
Living Services for Older Individuals Who Are Blind Training and 
Technical Assistance program at www.Grants.gov. You must search for the 
downloadable application package for this program by the CFDA number. 
Do not include the CFDA number's alpha suffix in your search (e.g., 
search for 84.177, not 84.177Z).
    Please note the following:
     When you enter the Grants.gov site, you will find 
information about submitting an application electronically through the 
site, as well as the hours of operation.
     Applications received by Grants.gov are date and time 
stamped. Your application must be fully uploaded and submitted and must 
be date and time stamped by the Grants.gov system no later than 4:30:00 
p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date. Except as 
otherwise noted in this section, we will not accept your application if 
it is received--that is, date and time stamped by the Grants.gov 
system--after 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application 
deadline date. We do not consider an application that does not comply 
with the deadline requirements. When we retrieve your application from 
Grants.gov, we will notify you if we are rejecting your application 
because it was date and time stamped by the Grants.gov system after 
4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date.
     The amount of time it can take to upload an application 
will vary depending on a variety of factors, including the size of the 
application and the speed of your Internet connection. Therefore, we 
strongly recommend that you do not wait until the application deadline 
date to begin the submission process through Grants.gov.
     You should review and follow the Education Submission 
Procedures for submitting an application through Grants.gov that are 
included in the application package for this program to ensure that you 
submit your application in a timely manner to the Grants.gov system. 
You can also find the Education Submission Procedures pertaining to 
Grants.gov under News and Events on the Department's G5 system home 
page at www.G5.gov.
     You will not receive additional point value because you 
submit your application in electronic format, nor will we penalize you 
if you qualify for an exception to the electronic submission 
requirement, as described elsewhere in this section, and submit your 
application in paper format.
     You must submit all documents electronically, including 
all information you typically provide on the following forms: The 
Application for Federal Assistance (SF 424), the Department of 
Education Supplemental Information for SF 424, Budget Information--Non-
Construction Programs (ED 524), and all necessary assurances and 
certifications.
     You must upload any narrative sections and all other 
attachments to your application as files in a PDF (Portable Document) 
read-only, non-modifiable format. Do not upload an interactive or 
fillable PDF file. If you upload a file type other than a read-only, 
non-modifiable PDF or submit a password-protected file, we will not 
review that material. Additional, detailed information on how to attach 
files is in the application instructions.
     Your electronic application must comply with any page-
limit requirements described in this notice.
     After you electronically submit your application, you will 
receive from Grants.gov an automatic notification of receipt that 
contains a Grants.gov tracking number. (This notification indicates 
receipt by Grants.gov only, not receipt by the Department.) The 
Department then will retrieve your application from Grants.gov and send 
a second notification to you by email. This second notification 
indicates that the Department has received your application and has 
assigned your application a PR/Award number (an ED-specified 
identifying number unique to your application).
     We may request that you provide us original signatures on 
forms at a later date.
    Application Deadline Date Extension in Case of Technical Issues 
with the Grants.gov System: If you are experiencing problems submitting 
your application through Grants.gov, please contact the Grants.gov 
Support Desk, toll free, at 1-800-518-4726. You must obtain a 
Grants.gov Support Desk Case Number and must keep a record of it.
    If you are prevented from electronically submitting your 
application on the application deadline date because of technical 
problems with the Grants.gov system, we will grant you an extension 
until 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, the following business day to 
enable you to transmit your application electronically or by hand 
delivery. You also may mail your application by following the mailing 
instructions described elsewhere in this notice.
    If you submit an application after 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC 
time, on the application deadline date, please contact the person 
listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT in section VII of this 
notice and provide an explanation of the technical problem you 
experienced with Grants.gov, along with the Grants.gov Support Desk 
Case Number. We will accept your application if we can confirm that a 
technical problem occurred with the Grants.gov system and that that 
problem affected your ability to submit your application by 4:30:00 
p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date. The 
Department will contact you after a determination is made on whether 
your application will be accepted.

    Note:  The extensions to which we refer in this section apply 
only to the unavailability of, or technical problems with, the 
Grants.gov system. We will not grant you an extension if you failed 
to fully register to submit your application to Grants.gov before 
the application deadline date and time or if the technical problem 
you experienced is unrelated to the Grants.gov system.

    Exception to Electronic Submission Requirement: You qualify for an 
exception to the electronic submission requirement, and may submit your 
application in paper format, if you are unable to submit an application 
through the Grants.gov system because--
     You do not have access to the Internet; or
     You do not have the capacity to upload large documents to 
the Grants.gov system;
    and
     No later than two weeks before the application deadline 
date (14 calendar days or, if the fourteenth calendar day before the 
application deadline date falls on a Federal holiday, the next business 
day following the Federal holiday), you mail or fax a written statement 
to the Department, explaining which of the two grounds for an exception 
prevents you from using the Internet to submit your application.
    If you mail your written statement to the Department, it must be 
postmarked no later than two weeks before the application deadline 
date. If you fax your written statement to the Department, we must 
receive the faxed statement no later than two weeks before the 
application deadline date.
    Address and mail or fax your statement to: Mary Williams, U.S. 
Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue SW., Room 5144, PCP, 
Washington, DC 20202-2800. FAX: (202) 245-7593
    Your paper application must be submitted in accordance with the 
mail or hand delivery instructions described in this notice.

[[Page 43412]]

    b. Submission of Paper Applications by Mail.
    If you qualify for an exception to the electronic submission 
requirement, you may mail (through the U.S. Postal Service or a 
commercial carrier) your application to the Department. You must mail 
the original and two copies of your application, on or before the 
application deadline date, to the Department at the following address: 
U.S. Department of Education, Application Control Center, Attention: 
(CFDA Number 84.177Z), LBJ Basement Level 1, 400 Maryland Avenue SW., 
Washington, DC 20202-4260.
    You must show proof of mailing consisting of one of the following:
    (1) A legibly dated U.S. Postal Service postmark.
    (2) A legible mail receipt with the date of mailing stamped by the 
U.S. Postal Service.
    (3) A dated shipping label, invoice, or receipt from a commercial 
carrier.
    (4) Any other proof of mailing acceptable to the Secretary of the 
U.S. Department of Education.
    If you mail your application through the U.S. Postal Service, we do 
not accept either of the following as proof of mailing:
    (1) A private metered postmark.
    (2) A mail receipt that is not dated by the U.S. Postal Service.
    If your application is postmarked after the application deadline 
date, we will not consider your application.

    Note:  The U.S. Postal Service does not uniformly provide a 
dated postmark. Before relying on this method, you should check with 
your local post office.

    c. Submission of Paper Applications by Hand Delivery.
    If you qualify for an exception to the electronic submission 
requirement, you (or a courier service) may deliver your paper 
application to the Department by hand. You must deliver the original 
and two copies of your application by hand, on or before the 
application deadline date, to the Department at the following address: 
U.S. Department of Education, Application Control Center, Attention: 
(CFDA Number 84.177Z), 550 12th Street SW., Room 7039, Potomac Center 
Plaza, Washington, DC 20202-4260.
    The Application Control Center accepts hand deliveries daily 
between 8:00 a.m. and 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, except 
Saturdays, Sundays, and Federal holidays.

    Note for Mail or Hand Delivery of Paper Applications:  If you 
mail or hand deliver your application to the Department--
    (1) You must indicate on the envelope and--if not provided by 
the Department--in Item 11 of the SF 424 the CFDA number, including 
suffix letter, if any, of the program under which you are submitting 
your application; and
    (2) The Application Control Center will mail to you a 
notification of receipt of your grant application. If you do not 
receive this notification within 15 business days from the 
application deadline date, you should call the U.S. Department of 
Education Application Control Center at (202) 245-6288.

V. Application Review Information

    1. Selection Criteria: The selection criteria for this program are 
from the selection criteria found in EDGAR at 34 CFR 75.210 and are 
listed in the application package.
    2. Review and Selection Process: We remind potential applicants 
that in reviewing applications in any discretionary grant competition, 
the Secretary may consider, under 34 CFR 75.217(d)(3), the past 
performance of the applicant in carrying out a previous award, such as 
the applicant's use of funds, achievement of project objectives, and 
compliance with grant conditions. The Secretary may also consider 
whether the applicant failed to submit a timely performance report or 
submitted a report of unacceptable quality.
    In addition, in making a competitive grant award, the Secretary 
also requires various assurances including those applicable to Federal 
civil rights laws that prohibit discrimination in programs or 
activities receiving Federal financial assistance from the Department 
of Education (34 CFR 100.4, 104.5, 106.4, 108.8, and 110.23).
    3. Special Conditions: Under 2 CFR 3474.10, the Secretary may 
impose special conditions and, in appropriate circumstances, high-risk 
conditions on a grant if the applicant or grantee is not financially 
stable; has a history of unsatisfactory performance; has a financial or 
other management system that does not meet the standards in 2 CFR 200, 
subpart D; has not fulfilled the conditions of a prior grant; or is 
otherwise not responsible.

VI. Award Administration Information

    1. Award Notices: If your application is successful, we notify your 
U.S. Representative and U.S. Senators and send you a Grant Award 
Notification (GAN); or we may send you an email containing a link to 
access an electronic version of your GAN. We may notify you informally, 
also.
    If your application is not evaluated or not selected for funding, 
we notify you.
    2. Administrative and National Policy Requirements: We identify 
administrative and national policy requirements in the application 
package and reference these and other requirements in the Applicable 
Regulations section of this notice.
    We reference the regulations outlining the terms and conditions of 
an award in the Applicable Regulations section of this notice and 
include these and other specific conditions in the GAN. The GAN also 
incorporates your approved application as part of your binding 
commitments under the grant.
    3. Reporting: (a) If you apply for a grant under this program, you 
must ensure that you have in place the necessary processes and systems 
to comply with the reporting requirements in 2 CFR part 170 should you 
receive funding under the program. This does not apply if you have an 
exception under 2 CFR 170.110(b).
    (b) At the end of your project period, you must submit a final 
performance report, including financial information, as directed by the 
Secretary. If you receive a multi-year award, you must submit an annual 
performance report that provides the most current performance and 
financial expenditure information as directed by the Secretary under 34 
CFR 75.118. The Secretary may also require more frequent performance 
reports under 34 CFR 75.720(c). For specific requirements on reporting, 
please go to http://www2.ed.gov/print/fund/grant/apply/appforms/appforms.html.
    4. Performance Measures: The Government Performance and Results Act 
of 1993 directs Federal departments and agencies to improve the 
effectiveness of their programs by engaging in strategic planning, 
setting outcome-related goals for programs, and measuring program 
results against those goals.
    The goal of this grant is to provide training and TA designed to 
improve the operation and performance of OIB programs to eligible DSAs 
and other service providers that receive funding under chapter 2 of 
title VII of the Act, as amended by WIOA.
    To assess the success of the grantee in meeting the training and TA 
goals of this program, the Department is in the process of developing 
performance measures. In general, these measures will assess the 
quality, relevance, and usefulness of the training and TA provided by 
the Center, as well as the performance of the Center in achieving the 
project's intended outcomes in the specific topics in each priority 
area established annually by RSA in the cooperative agreement.
    The grantee will be required to collect and annually report data 
showing its performance on these measures in the

[[Page 43413]]

Center's annual and final performance reports to the Department.
    The annual performance report must include both quantitative and 
qualitative information sufficient to assess the quality, relevance, 
and usefulness of the training and TA provided by the Center and the 
progress toward training and TA objectives for that year. The data used 
must be valid and verifiable.
    The annual performance reports must provide, at a minimum, specific 
information on the number of training and TA activities conducted by 
the Center, the topics of these activities, the type of training and TA 
provided (i.e., intensive, targeted, general), the number and types of 
participants served (i.e., DSAs or other providers of services under 
the OIB program), and summary data from participant evaluations.
    5. Continuation Awards: In making a continuation award under 34 CFR 
75.253, the Secretary considers, among other things: whether a grantee 
has made substantial progress in achieving the goals and objectives of 
the project; whether the grantee has expended funds in a manner that is 
consistent with its approved application and budget; and, if the 
Secretary has established performance measurement requirements, the 
performance targets in the grantee's approved application. In making a 
continuation grant, the Secretary also considers whether the grantee is 
operating in compliance with the assurances in its approved 
application, including those applicable to Federal civil rights laws 
that prohibit discrimination in programs or activities receiving 
Federal financial assistance from the Department (34 CFR 100.4, 104.5, 
106.4, 108.8, and 110.23).

VII. Agency Contact

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mary Williams, U.S. Department of 
Education, 400 Maryland Avenue SW., Room 5144, PCP, Washington, DC 
20202-2800. Telephone: (202) 245-7586 or by email: 
[email protected].
    If you use a TDD or a TTY, call the Federal Relay Service (FRS), 
toll free, at 1-800-877-8339.

VIII. Other Information

    Accessible Format: Individuals with disabilities can obtain this 
document and a copy of the application package in an accessible format 
(e.g., braille, large print, audiotape, or compact disc) by contacting 
Wendell Bell, U.S. Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue SW., 
Room 5075, PCP, Washington, DC 20202-2550. Telephone: (202) 245-7363. 
If you use a TDD or a TTY, call the FRS, toll free, at 1-800-877-8339.
    Electronic Access to This Document: The official version of this 
document is the document published in the Federal Register. Free 
Internet access to the official edition of the Federal Register and the 
Code of Federal Regulations is available via the Federal Digital System 
at: www.gpo.gov/fdsys. At this site you can view this document, as well 
as all other documents of this Department published in the Federal 
Register, in text or Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF). To use PDF 
you must have Adobe Acrobat Reader, which is available free at the 
site.
    You may also access documents of the Department published in the 
Federal Register by using the article search feature at: 
www.federalregister.gov. Specifically, through the advanced search 
feature at this site, you can limit your search to documents published 
by the Department.

    Dated: July 17, 2015.
Michael K. Yudin,
Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services.
[FR Doc. 2015-17996 Filed 7-21-15; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4000-01-P