[Federal Register Volume 82, Number 213 (Monday, November 6, 2017)]
[Pages 51418-51419]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2017-24124]



Administration for Children and Families

[CFDA Numbers: 93.581, 93.587, 93.612]

Notice of Final Issuance Adopting Administration for Native 
Americans Program Policies and Procedures

AGENCY: Administration for Native Americans, ACF, HHS.

ACTION: Issuance of final policies.


SUMMARY: Administration for Native Americans (ANA) is issuing final 
interpretive rules, general statements of policy and rules of agency 
organization, procedure, or practice relating to the following six 
proposed FY2018 Funding Opportunity Announcements (FOAs): Environmental 
Regulatory Enhancement (HHS-2018-ACF-ANA-NR-1344); Native American 
Language Preservation and Maintenance--Esther Martinez Immersion (HHS-
2018-ACF-ANA-NB-1343); Native American Language Preservation and 
Maintenance (HHS-2018-ACF-NA-NL-1342); Social and Economic Development 
Strategies (HHS-2018-ACF-ANA-NA-1339); Social and Economic Development 
Strategies--Alaska (HHS-2018-ACF-ANA-NK-1340); and Native Youth 
Initiative for Leadership, Empowerment, and Development (HHS-2018-ACF-

DATES: The policies described in the Notice for Public Comment (NOPC), 
as amended in this notice if applicable, are effective immediately upon 
publication of this notice.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Carmelia Strickland, Director, 
Division of Program Operations, Administration for Native Americans, 
(877) 922-9262, [email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Section 814 of the Native American Programs 
Act of 1974 (NAPA), as amended, requires ANA to provide notice and 
allow for comment on its proposed interpretive rules and general 
statements of policy. On August 14, 2017, ANA published a NOPC with 
proposed policy and program clarifications for the FY 2018 FOAs. ANA 
also follows the ACF Tribal Consultation Policy, and sent a Dear Tribal 
Leader letter informing tribes of the NOPC and made them aware of the 
September 15 deadline for comment submission. This Notice responds to 
comments regarding ANA's August 14, 2017, NOPC (82 FR 37861) and the 
tribal consultation afforded through the Dear Tribal Leader letter 
issued August 14, 2017. In addition, this notification includes a 
clarification in a new administrative policy, a modification to the 
project start date for Native Language programs, and a notification 
regarding the application period for FY 2018 FOAs.

A. Comments and Responses to the August 14, 2017, NOPC

    ANA published a NOPC in the Federal Register on August 14, 2017, 
with proposed policy and program clarifications, modifications, and 
activities for the FY 2018 FOAs. ANA sent a Dear Tribal Leader letter 
electronically and via U.S. mail the same day with the NOPC attached. 
The NOPC provided proposed clarifications, modifications, and new text 
for six proposed FY 2018 FOAs. The FY 2018 FOAs are based on the FY 
2017 FOAs, previously published as: Environmental Regulatory 
Enhancement (HHS-2017-ACF-ANA-NR-1221); Native American Language 
Preservation and Maintenance--Esther Martinez Immersion (HHS-2017-ACF-
ANA-NB-1226); Native American Language Preservation and Maintenance 
(HHS- 2017-ACF-ANA-NL-1235); Social and Economic Development Strategies 
(HHS-2017-ACF-ANA-NA-1236); Social and Economic Development 
Strategies--Alaska (HHS-2015-ACF-ANA-NK- 0960); and Native Youth 
Initiative for Leadership, Empowerment, and Development (HHS-2017-ACF-
ANA-NC-1263). The public comment period was open for 30 days. ANA also 
publicized a background call on the NOPC for August 23, 2017, and had 
14 callers on the line.
    ANA did not receive any feedback on the FOA changes from tribal 
governments. ANA received one response to the NOPC from the Sisseton-
Wahpeton Oyate Dakotah Language Institute. Comments expressed concerns 
or made suggestions about some of the changes. ANA considered the 
comments and determined there to be none that required changes to any 
of the FOAs. The following includes comments from the Sisseton-Wahpeton 
Oyate Dakotah Language Institute and responses provided by ANA:

    When changing the application criteria, please make the changes 
effective two grant cycles from the adoption date. Sometimes the 
application due dates are changed because there are upcoming changes 
to the Funding Opportunity Announcement and a comment period has to 
be allowed. And then, the grant start dates are pushed back and then 
the entire timeline developed in the project planning is no longer 

    Response: The FOAs, which contain the application criteria specific 
to each program area, are published on an annual basis. Through the 
NOPC, ANA provided advance notice to applicants about the proposed 
changes in FY 2018 to its six FOAs. ANA is unable to provide specific 
language until the publication of the actual FOAs. Therefore, ANA is 
not able to make changes to the application criteria prior to the 
effective date.
    Comment: Regarding the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) Notice 
inaccurately reflecting the amount of time it takes to file an ANA 

    Each hour spent on a grant application is one less hour that can 
be spent working on our endangered language, especially for a small 
program like ours. A more accurate Paperwork Reduction Notice may 
have weight in deciding whether it is actually worth it to invest 
the amount of time it takes to complete the process with very little 
chance of success.

    Response: ANA's FOAs are drafted within the context of a Uniform 
Project Description (UPD), which serves to provide the overall 
structure for all applications submitted to the Administration for 
Children and Families (ACF). The UPD includes specific standard text 
that applies to all ACF programs, in combination with program-specific 
text that is added by individual program offices. The PRA notice is 
part of the ACF UPD, which is managed ACF-wide, and determined based on 
the average amount of time it takes to complete the project description 
and the budget and budget justification for ACF programs as a whole. 
The estimated burden of 60 hours does not include supplementary 
information that an applicant may want to include. While there is 
likely to be variation among different programs and applicants, the 
average estimated time to complete an application for ACF programs is 
60 hours. ANA will forward the comment to the ACF branch that handles 
the UPD to be considered upon the renewal of the PRA clearance for the 

    If you are putting in new terms that are common terms to those 
working in a federal program accepting grant applications, please 
make sure the new terms are adequately explained. How can a person 
comment about changing from ``results'' and ``benefits'' to

[[Page 51419]]

``outcomes'' and ``outputs'' if I don't know what they mean to you? 
Or are they the same meaning to you and it's just a change in the 
words that are going to be used?

    Response: ANA's intent is to provide more universally accepted 
terminology, especially for evaluation requirements and criteria. 
Definitions and examples of all new terms will be provided in each of 
the FY 2018 FOAs. Any new terminology will be addressed in Section I. 
Program Description of the FOA. ANA will explain each term and include 
examples of each. Definitions will be included in the appendix of each 

B. ANA Administrative Policy Regarding Prioritized Funding for Local, 
Community-Based, Native American Organizations as Described in the 
August 14, 2017, NOPC (82 FR 37861)

    ANA has edited the description of this policy since it was 
published in the Federal Register, to further clarify the requirements 
for non-local, national, and regional organizations. If approved, ANA 
intends to include this policy in all FY 2018 FOAs as stated below:
    Prioritized Funding for Community-based Native American 

    ANA reserves the right to prioritize funding to community-based 
Native American organizations serving their local communities and 
populations. Applications from non-local, national, and regional 
organizations that propose projects to serve multiple communities, 
or to be performed in a different geographic location, must clearly 
demonstrate that the need for the project was originated by the each 
community being served, and that the community and/or tribal 
government supports the proposed project. They must also describe 
how each community was selected, identify and describe the intended 
beneficiaries, demonstrate community involvement in the development 
of the project, and discuss a community-based delivery strategy for 
the project. The proposed project goals, objectives, and outcomes 
must address goals of the community being served. National and 
regional organizations must describe their membership, and define 
how the organization operates. The type of community to be served 
will determine the type of documentation necessary to support the 

C. Additional Information Regarding Project Start Dates for Language 
Preservation and Maintenance, and Native Language Esther Martinez 
Immersion Grants

    Through continued discussions with ANA grantees and stakeholders, 
ANA has determined that moving the start date from August 1 to July 1 
for projects funded under the Native Language Preservation and 
Maintenance and the Native Language Esther Martinez Immersion programs 
will align reporting requirements to reduce the number of required 
federal financial reports, thereby reducing the reporting burden for 
grantees. In addition, an earlier start date will provide projects with 
additional time for planning and start up prior to the start of the 
school year, which marks the beginning of instruction for many Native 
Language projects. Therefore, ANA intends to implement a July 1 start 
date for all projects funded under the Native Language Preservation and 
Maintenance and Native Language Esther Martinez Immersion FOAs for FY 

D. Application Period Notification

    ANA would like to notify potential applicants that the open 
application period to respond to FOAs has been updated to a minimum of 
60 days to support the timely award of new grants.

E. Funding Opportunity Announcements

    For information on the types of projects funded by ANA, please 
refer to ANA's Web site for information on our program areas and FOAs: 
https://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/ana. Pre-publication information on 
ANA's FOAs will be available at https://www.grants.gov/web/grants/search-grants.html by clicking on `Forecasted'' under Opportunity 
Status and ``Administration for Children and Families--ANA [HHS-ACF-
ANA]'' on the left side of the page. Synopses and application forms 
will be available on www.Grants.gov.

Stacey Ecoffey,
Acting Commissioner, Administration for Native American, ACF, Acting 
Deputy Assistant Secretary for Native American Affairs, Department of 
Health and Human Services.
[FR Doc. 2017-24124 Filed 11-3-17; 8:45 am]