[Federal Register: April 20, 2006 (Volume 71, Number 76)]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
Rural Business-Cooperative Service
Request for Proposals: Fiscal Year 2006 Funding Opportunity for
Research on the Economic Impact of Cooperatives
AGENCY: Rural Business-Cooperative Service, USDA.
ACTION: Initial notice of request for proposals.
SUMMARY: Rural Business-Cooperative Service programs are administered
through USDA Rural Development. USDA Rural Development announces the
availability of approximately $495,000 in competitive cooperative
agreement funds for fiscal year (FY) 2006 to conduct research on the
national economic impact of all types of cooperatives. USDA Rural
Development hereby requests proposals from institutions of higher
education interested in applying for a competitively awarded
cooperative research agreement. The intent of the funding is to
encourage research on the critical issue of the economic value of
DATES: Interested parties may submit completed applications for the
cooperative agreement on paper or electronically according to the
Paper copies must be postmarked and mailed, shipped, or sent
overnight no later than June 30, 2006, to be eligible for FY 2006
funding. Electronic copies must be received by June 30, 2006, to be
eligible for FY 2006 funding. Late applications are not eligible for FY
ADDRESSES: Applicants may obtain application forms, guides, and
materials for the cooperative agreement at http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/rbs/coops/reic.htm
or by contacting USDA Rural Development at (202)
690-0368, (TDD: (800) 877-8339, Federal Information Relay Service) and
ask for the cooperative research agreement application kit.
Submit completed paper applications for a cooperative agreement to
USDA Rural Development's Cooperative Programs, Attn: Cooperative
Research, Mail STOP 3250, Room 4016--South, 1400 Independence Avenue,
SW., Washington, DC 20250-3250. The phone number that should be used
for FedEx packages is (202) 720-7558.
Submit electronic applications at http://www.grants.gov, following
the instructions found on this Web site.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Visit the program Web site at http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/rbs/coops/reic.htm
, which contains application
guidance, including an Application Guide and application forms. Or you
may contact USDA Rural Development at (202) 690-0368 (TDD: (800) 877-
8339 Federal Information Relay Service).
Paperwork Reduction Act
Under the Paperwork Reduction Act, 44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq., OMB must
approve all ``collections of information'' by USDA Rural Development.
The Act defines ``collection of information'' as a requirement for
``answers to * * * identical reporting or recordkeeping requirements
imposed on ten or more persons * * *.'' (44 U.S.C. 3502(3)(A)) Because
the RFP will receive less than 10 respondents, the Paperwork Reduction
Act does not apply.
Federal Agency: Rural Business-Cooperative Service.
Funding Opportunity Title: Research on the Economic Impact of
Announcement Type: Initial announcement.
Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Number: 10.778.
Dates: You may submit completed applications for the cooperative
agreement on paper or electronically according to the following
Paper copies must be postmarked and mailed, shipped, or sent
overnight no later than June 30, 2006, to be eligible for FY 2006
funding. Late applications are not eligible for FY 2006 funding.
Electronic copies must be received by June 30, 2006, to be eligible
for FY 2006 funding. Late applications are not eligible for FY 2006
The Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (Pub. L. 104-13): There is no
public reporting burden associated with this notice.
I. Funding Opportunity Description
This solicitation is issued pursuant to the Agriculture, Rural
Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies
Appropriations Act, 2006 (Pub. L. 109-97), as amended by the Department
of Defense Appropriations Act, 2006 (Pub. L. 109-148) directing funds
``for a cooperative research agreement with a qualified academic
institution to conduct research on the national economic impact of all
types of cooperatives.'' The Secretary of Agriculture has delegated the
program's administration to USDA Rural Development.
The primary objective of this cooperative research agreement
program is to facilitate university research on the national economic
impact of cooperatives. The research program will need to develop a
methodology for collecting and assembling basic impact data on a
periodic basis; apply the methodology to collect data and estimate
economic impact of cooperatives; estimate cooperative specific
community impact multipliers; and conduct other appropriate studies to
examine the socio-economic impact of cooperatives on their local
The cooperative agreement proposal must address the following
1. Development of a methodology for collection and assembly of
basic impact data on a periodic basis. This methodology will need to
account for cooperative organizational complexity, such as a single
organization's several local, regional, and national locations, as well
as sector differences.
2. Application of the developed methodology, by major sector, to
collect data and estimate economic impact of cooperatives. Data items
to be collected/measured must include:
Number and location of cooperatives,
Volume measures appropriate for each sector (revenues,
dollar value, and other appropriate size indicators),
Number of persons impacted by the cooperative (members,
patrons, or investors), and
Number of full-time equivalent jobs and other economic
Sectors for which summary data should be prepared include:
Business-to-business (wholesaling, manufacturing),
Agricultural marketing (including organic and
Agricultural supplies and services,
Public services (including transportation and education),
3. Creation and population of a database for individual cooperative
and summary data collected. Database is to be delivered to USDA Rural
4. Estimation of cooperative specific community impact multipliers
for each of the following four categories or classes of cooperatives:
i. Commercial sales or marketing--includes farm supply and
marketing, grocery and consumer goods, business-to-business, and
ii. Social and public services--includes housing, health care, day
care/ elder care, transportation, and educational services.
iii. Financial services--includes credit unions, banks, and mutual
iv. Utilities--includes electric, telephone, water, waste, and
other regulated utilities.
5. Performance of subcontracting services, oversight, and financial
controls for the overall project.
6. Submission of quarterly progress reports and quarterly financial
reports to USDA Rural Development.
7. Preparation and submission of publishable quality written
reports for Deliverables 2 and 4 to USDA Rural Development.
USDA Rural Development will competitively award one cooperative
agreement to fund the collection and analysis of data to determine the
national economic impact of cooperatives. An institution of higher
education may subcontract or collaborate with others on the research
and data collection. A formal consortium of academic institutions is
The definitions at 7 CFR 3019.2 are incorporated by reference.
II. Award Information
Type of Award: Cooperative Agreement.
Fiscal Year Funds: FY 2006.
Approximate Total Funding: $495,000.
Approximate Number of Awards: 1.
Approximate Average Award: $495,000.
Floor of Award Range: None.
Ceiling of Award Range: $495,000.
Anticipated Award Date: September 15, 2006.
Budget Period Length: 24 months.
Project Period Length: 24 months.
III. Eligibility Information
A. Eligible Applicants
Applicants must be institutions of higher education. Proposals may
be submitted by public or private colleges or universities, research
foundations maintained by a college or university, or private nonprofit
organizations funded by a group of colleges or universities. Under the
Lobbying Disclosure Act of 1995, an organization described in section
501(c)(4) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 (26 U.S.C. 501(c)(4))
which engages in lobbying activities, is not eligible to apply.
B. Cost Sharing or Matching
Matching funds are not required but are highly encouraged.
Applicants must verify in their applications that matching funds are
available for the time period of the agreement if the matching funds
are required to complete the project. Matching funds must be provided
by either the applicant or by a third party in the form of cash or in-
kind contributions. Matching funds must be spent on eligible expenses
and must be from eligible sources.
C. Other Eligibility Requirements
Indirect Cost Eligibility: Public Law 109-97, Sec. 708 states ``No
funds appropriated by this Act may be used to pay negotiated indirect
cost rates on cooperative agreements or similar arrangements between
the United States Department of Agriculture and nonprofit institutions
in excess of 10 percent of the total direct cost of the agreement when
the purpose of such cooperative arrangements is to carry out programs
of mutual interest between the two parties.'' Indirect costs in excess
of 10 percent of the direct cost, therefore, will be ineligible for
Activity Eligibility: A cooperative agreement reflects a
relationship between the United States Government and an eligible
recipient where the principal purpose of the relationship is the
transfer of money, property, services, or anything of value to the
eligible recipient to carry out the desired research; and substantial
involvement is anticipated between USDA Rural Development acting for
the United States Government and the eligible recipient during the
performance of the research in the agreement. A cooperative agreement
is not a grant. Therefore, the project proposed must include a
description of USDA Rural Development's substantial participation. USDA
Rural Development may subsequently negotiate its participation before
the cooperative agreement is executed.
Applicants that propose budgets that include more than 10 percent
of total project costs that are ineligible for the program will be
ineligible, and the application will not be considered for funding.
However, if an application with 10 percent or less of ineligible costs
is selected for funding, all ineligible costs must be removed from the
project and replaced with eligible activities or the amount of the
award will be reduced accordingly.
Cooperative Agreement Period Eligibility: Applications that have a
timeframe of more than 24 months will be considered ineligible and will
not be considered for funding. Applications that request funds for a
time period ending after September 30, 2008, will not be considered for
Completeness Eligibility: Applications without sufficient
information to determine eligibility will not be considered for
funding. Applications that are missing any required elements (in whole
or in part) will not be considered for funding, except where
specifically allowed in the following paragraphs.
IV. Application and Submission Information
A. Address to Request Application Package
If you plan to apply using a paper application, you can obtain the
application package for this funding opportunity at http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/rbs/coops/reic.htm.
If you do not have access to
the Internet, or if you have difficulty accessing the forms online, you
may contact the National Office by calling (202) 690-0368 (TDD: (800)
877-8339 Federal Information Relay Service). Application forms can be
mailed to you. If you plan to apply electronically, you must visit
http://www.grants.gov and follow the instructions.
B. Content and Form of Submission
You may submit your application in paper or in an electronic
format. You may view the Application Guide at http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/rbs/coops/reic.htm
If you submit your application in paper form, you must submit one
signed original of your complete application along with two additional
If you submit your application electronically, you must follow the
instructions given at http://www.grants.gov. Applicants are advised to
visit the site well in advance of the application deadline if they plan
to apply electronically to insure that they have obtained the proper
authentication and have sufficient computer resources to complete the
An application must contain all of the following elements. Any
application that is missing any element or contains an incomplete
element will not be considered for funding:
1. Form SF-424, ``Application for Federal Assistance.'' In order
for this form to be considered complete, it must contain the legal name
of the applicant, the applicant's Dun and Bradstreet Data Universal
Numbering System (DUNS) number, the applicant's complete mailing
address, the name and telephone number of a contact person, the
employer identification number (EIN), the start and end dates of the
project, the Federal funds requested, other funds that will be used as
matching funds, an answer to the question, ``Is applicant delinquent on
any Federal debt?'', the name and signature of an authorized
representative, the telephone number of the authorized representative,
and the date the form was signed. Other information requested on the
form may be applicable, but the above-listed information is required
for an application to be considered complete.
The DUNS number is a nine-digit identification number, which
uniquely identifies business entities. Applicants can receive a DUNS
number at no cost by accessing http://www.dnb.com/us/ or calling (866)
2. Form SF-424A, ``Budget Information--Non-Construction Programs.''
In order for this form to be considered complete, the applicant must
fill out Sections A, B, C, and D. The applicant must include both
Federal and any matching funds to be included.
3. Form SF-424B, ``Assurances--Non-Construction Programs.'' In
order for this form to be considered complete, the form must be signed
by an authorized official and include the title, name of applicant, and
4. Title Page. The title page must include the title of the project
as well as any other relevant identifying information. The length
should not exceed one page.
5. Table of Contents. For ease of locating information, each
proposal must contain a detailed Table of Contents immediately
following the title page.
6. Executive Summary. A summary of the proposal, not to exceed one
page, must briefly describe the project, including goals, tasks to be
completed, and other relevant information that provides a general
overview of the project. In the event an applicant submits more than
one page for this element, only the first page submitted will be
7. Eligibility Discussion. A detailed discussion, not to exceed
four pages, will describe how the applicant meets the eligibility
requirements. In the event that more than four pages are submitted,
only the first four pages will be considered.
i. Applicant Eligibility. The applicant must first describe how it
meets the definition of an institution of higher education.
ii. Purpose Eligibility. The applicant must describe how the
project purpose is eligible for funding. The project purpose is
comprised of two components. First, the applicant must describe how the
proposed project consists of activities needed to determine the
national economic impact of all types of cooperatives. Second, the
applicant must demonstrate that the combined activities are sufficient
to estimate the national economic impact of all types of cooperatives.
8. Proposal Narrative. The narrative must include the following
i. Project Title. The title of the proposed project must be brief,
not to exceed 75 characters, yet describe the essentials of the
project. It should match the project title submitted on the SF-424. The
project title does not need to appear on a separate page. It can be
included on the title page and/or on the information sheet.
ii. Information Sheet. A separate one-page information sheet
listing each of the evaluation criteria referenced in this funding
announcement followed by the page numbers of all relevant material
contained in the proposal that address or support each criterion.
iii. Goals of the Project. A clear statement of the ultimate goals
of the project must be included. There must be an explanation of how
economic benefit will be measured.
iv. Workplan. The narrative must contain a description of the
project and set forth the tasks involved in reasonable detail. The
description should specify the activity, who will perform the activity,
during what timeframe the activity will take place, and the cost of the
activity. Please note that one of the proposal evaluation criteria
evaluates the workplan and budget. Applicants should only submit the
workplan and budget once, either in this section or as part of the
workplan/budget evaluation criterion discussion.
v. Proposal Evaluation Criteria. Each of the proposal evaluation
criteria referenced in this funding announcement must be addressed,
specifically and individually, in narrative form.
9. Certification of Judgment. Applicants must certify that the
United States has not obtained a judgment against them. No Federal
funds shall be used to pay a judgment obtained by the United States. It
is suggested that applicants use the following language for the
certification. ``[INSERT NAME OF APPLICANT] certifies that the United
States has not obtained a judgment against it.'' A separate signature
is not required.
10. Verification of Matching Funds. Applicants must provide a
budget to support the workplan showing all sources and uses of funds
during the project period. Applicants will be required to verify any
and all matching funds, both cash and in-kind. All proposed matching
funds must be specifically documented in the application. If the
matching funds are to be provided by an in-kind contribution from the
applicant, the application must include a signed letter from an
authorized representative of the applicant verifying the goods or
services to be donated, when the goods and
services will be donated, and the value of the goods or services.
Applicants should note that only goods or services for which no
expenditure is made can be considered in-kind. If the applicant is
paying for goods and services as part of the matching funds
contribution, the expenditure is considered a cash match, and should be
verified as such. If the matching funds are to be provided by a third
party in cash, the application must include a signed letter from that
third party verifying how much cash will be donated and when it will be
donated. Verification for funds donated outside the proposed time
period of the cooperative agreement will not be accepted. If the
matching funds are to be provided by a third party in-kind donation,
the application must include a signed letter from the third party
verifying the goods or services to be donated, when the goods and
services will be donated, and the value of the goods or services.
Verification for in-kind contributions donated outside the proposed
time period of the cooperative agreement will not be accepted.
Verification for in-kind contributions that are over-valued will not be
accepted. The valuation process for the in-kind funds does not need to
be included in the application, especially if it is lengthy, but the
applicant must be able to demonstrate how the valuation was achieved at
the time of notification of tentative selection for the award. If the
applicant cannot satisfactorily demonstrate how the valuation was
determined, the award may not be made.
If matching funds are in cash, they must be spent on goods and
services that are eligible expenditures for this cooperative agreement
program. If matching funds are in-kind contributions, the donated goods
or services must be considered eligible expenditures for this program.
The matching funds must be spent or donated during the agreement
period. Some examples of acceptable uses for matching funds are: labor
performing work required for the proposed project, office supplies, and
travel expenses. Some examples of unacceptable uses of matching funds
are: Land, fixed equipment, buildings, vehicles, political activities,
costs of preparing the application, and costs incurred prior to the
effective date of the cooperative agreement. (See 7 CFR parts 3015 and
3019 for funds use eligibility rules.) If acceptable verification for
all proposed matching funds is missing from the application by the
application deadline, the application will receive zero points for the
Funding Match part of the evaluation criteria.
C. Submission Dates and Times
Application Deadline Date: June 30, 2006.
Explanation of Deadlines: Paper applications must be POSTMARKED by
the deadline date (see Section IV.F. for the address). Final electronic
applications must be received by http://www.grants.gov by the deadline
date. If your application does not meet the deadline above, it will not
be considered for funding. You will be notified whether or not your
application was received on time.
D. Intergovernmental Review of Applications
Executive Order (EO) 12372, Intergovernmental Review of Federal
Programs, does not apply to this program.
E. Funding Restrictions
Funding restrictions apply to both Federal funds and matching
funds. Funds may only be used for activities related to determining the
economic impact of cooperatives.
No funds made available under this solicitation shall be used to:
1. Plan, repair, rehabilitate, acquire, or construct a building or
facility, including a processing facility;
2. Purchase, rent, or install fixed equipment, including processing
3. Purchase vehicles, including boats;
4. Pay for the preparation of the cooperative agreement
5. Pay expenses not directly related to the funded project;
6. Fund political or lobbying activities;
7. Fund any activities prohibited by 7 CFR parts 3015 or 3019;
8. Fund architectural or engineering design work for a specific
9. Purchase land;
10. Duplicate current services or replace or substitute support
11. Pay costs of the project incurred prior to the date of
12. Pay for assistance to any private business enterprise which
does not have at least 51 percent ownership by those who are either
citizens of the United States or reside in the United States after
being legally admitted for permanent residence; or
13. Pay any judgment or debt owed to the United States.
F. Other Submission Requirements
You may submit your paper application for a cooperative agreement
to USDA Rural Development's Cooperative Programs, Attn: Cooperative
Research, Mail STOP 3250, Room 4016-South, 1400 Independence Avenue,
SW., Washington, DC 20250-3250. The phone number that should be used
for FedEx packages is (202) 720-7558. You may also choose to submit
your application electronically at http://www.grants.gov. Final
applications may not be submitted by electronic mail, facsimile, or by
hand-delivery. Each application submission must contain all required
documents in one envelope, if by mail or express delivery service.
V. Application Review Information
All eligible and complete applications will be evaluated based on
the following criteria and maximum point allowances. Failure to address
any one of the following criteria by the application deadline will
result in a determination of incomplete and the application will not be
considered for funding. The total points available for the set of
criteria are 100.
1. Relevance of the project proposal (30 points). Proposals will be
evaluated on how directly they address the stated objective of
demonstrating economic impact of cooperatives in the United States.
Factors to be weighed by evaluators in scoring a proposal's relevance
Demonstration of an understanding of cooperatives' unique
impacts on communities;
Definition of clear and objective measures of impact;
Definition of specific measurement strategies for
obtaining impact measures from each major cooperative sector and each
category of persons impacted by cooperatives;
Description of sound data collection and analysis
Establishment of systems for efficiently replicating the
impact measure process in future years.
2. Quality of Workplan (30 points). The quality evaluations will be
based on whether the proposal outlines a sound plan of work that will
meet the objectives in a timely and cost-efficient manner. Factors to
be weighed by evaluators in scoring a proposal's workplan will include:
How well the steps for carrying out the work are defined;
The logic of the sequence of proposed steps and the
likelihood they will achieve their intended result;
The establishment of clear benchmarks and timetables to
measure progress of the project;
The detail, accuracy, and reasonableness of the project's
proposed budget; and
The identification of partners and collaborators in the
project and the specific roles to be played by each.
3. Quality of personnel and management plan (20 points). The
quality of the management plan and the personnel involved in carrying
out the proposed project will be evaluated in terms of the capabilities
of individuals and institutions to carry out assigned roles in an
effective manner. Factors to be weighed by evaluators in scoring a
proposal's personnel and management plan will include:
Experience of project leaders and the lead institution in
managing complex research projects;
Evidence of management controls, progress measurements,
and reporting systems within a structured project management plan; and
Experience and relevant skills of researchers,
consultants, and subcontractors assigned to carry out specific roles in
4. Funding match and cooperative community support (20 points).
Points will be awarded on the basis of the percentage match provided by
the applicant and the level of support for the proposal from the
cooperative community as evidenced by contribution of resources to the
match and other indications of support.
Up to 10 points will be awarded for matching funds
provided by or arranged for by the applicant. One point will be awarded
for each 5 percent match, up to a maximum of 10 points for a 50 percent
Five points will be awarded if at least 25 percent of the
total match is sourced from contributions by the private sector
cooperative community (cooperatives, cooperative-based trade
Up to five points will be awarded based on evidence of
support for the applicant's proposal as expressed through letters of
support from the cooperative community.
B. Review and Selection Process
Each application will be initially reviewed by Rural Development
personnel for eligibility and to determine whether all required
elements are complete. A list of required elements follows:
Table of Contents.
Applicant Eligibility Discussion.
Purpose Eligibility Discussion.
Goals of the Project.
Proposal Evaluation Criterion 1.
Proposal Evaluation Criterion 2.
Proposal Evaluation Criterion 3.
Proposal Evaluation Criterion 4.
Certification of Judgment.
Verification of any Matching Funds.
Incomplete applications that have four or less incomplete required
elements and appear to be otherwise eligible will receive a letter
requesting the incomplete items be provided within 12 business days of
the date the letter was sent. If the requested items are not received
when requested or are not complete, the application will not be further
evaluated or considered for funding. Any other incomplete or ineligible
applications will not be further evaluated or considered for funding.
All eligible and complete proposals will be evaluated by at least
three reviewers based on criteria 1 through 4 described in paragraph A
of this section. All reviewers will be employees of USDA.
Once the scores for criteria 1 through 4 have been independently
completed by the three reviewers, the scores will be used to rank the
proposals. If the three reviewers rank the best proposal differently
then, with the aid of a facilitator, the three reviewers will develop a
consensus ranking. If the three reviewers cannot reach a consensus, two
additional reviewers will review the proposals and be added to the
rankings. A final ranking will be obtained based on the consensus
rankings of the three member review panel, or the average of the five
After the award selection is made, all applicants will be notified
of the status of their applications by mail. The awardee must meet all
statutory and regulatory program requirements in order to receive their
award. In the event that an awardee cannot meet the requirements, the
award will be withdrawn.
C. Anticipated Announcement and Award Dates
Award Date: The announcement of award selection is expected to
occur on or about August 15, 2006.
VI. Award Administration Information
A. Award Notices
The successful applicant will receive a notification of tentative
selection for funding from USDA Rural Development. The applicant must
sign a mutually agreed to cooperative agreement and comply with all
applicable statutes, regulations, and this notice before the award will
receive final approval.
Unsuccessful applicants will receive notification, including
mediation procedures and appeal rights, by mail.
B. Administrative and National Policy Requirements
This award is subject to 7 CFR parts 3015 and 3019. These
regulations may be accessed at http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/cfr-table-search.html#page1
The following additional documentation requirements apply to the
awardee selected for this program:
Form RD 1940-1, ``Request for Obligation of Funds''.
Form AD-1047, ``Certification Regarding Debarment,
Suspension, and Other Responsibility Matters-Primary Covered
Form AD-1048, ``Certification Regarding Debarment,
Suspension, Ineligibility and Voluntary Exclusion-Lower Tier Covered
Form AD-1049, ``Certification Regarding a Drug-Free
Workplace Requirements (Grants)''.
Form RD 400-1, ``Equal Opportunity Agreement''.
Form RD 400-4, ``Assurance Agreement''.
Additional information on these requirements can be found at http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/rbs/coops/reic.htm
Reporting Requirements: You must provide USDA Rural Development
with an original or an electronic copy that includes all required
signatures of the following reports. The reports should be submitted to
the Agency contact listed on your Cooperative Agreement. Failure to
submit satisfactory reports on time may result in suspension or
termination of your award.
1. Form SF-269 or SF-269A. A ``Financial Status Report,'' listing
expenditures according to agreed upon budget categories, on a quarterly
basis. Reporting periods end each December 31, March 31, June 30, and
September 30. Reports are due 30 days after the reporting period ends.
2. Quarterly performance reports that compare accomplishments to
the objectives stated in the proposal. Identify all tasks completed to
date and provide documentation supporting the reported results. If the
original schedule provided in the workplan is not being met, the report
should discuss the problems or delays that may affect completion of the
project. Objectives for
the next reporting period should be listed. Compliance with any special
condition on the use of award funds should be discussed. Reporting
periods end each December 31, March 31, June 30, and September 30.
Reports are due 30 days after the reporting period ends. Supporting
documentation must also be submitted for completed tasks. The
supporting documentation for completed tasks include, but are not
limited to, questionnaire or interview guides, publications of research
findings, summaries of data collected, and any other documentation
related to how funds were spent.
3. Final Project performance reports that compare accomplishments
to the objectives stated in the proposal. Identify all tasks completed
and provide documentation supporting the reported results. If the
original schedule provided in the workplan was not met, the report must
discuss the problems or delays that affected completion of the project.
Compliance with any special condition on the use of award funds should
be discussed. Supporting documentation for completed tasks must also be
submitted. The supporting documentation for completed tasks include,
but are not limited to, publications of research findings, summaries of
data collected, documentation of data and software delivered to USDA
Rural Development, and any other documentation related to how funds
were spent. The final performance report is due within 90 days of the
completion of the project.
VII. Agency Contacts
For general questions about this announcement and for program
technical assistance, please contact the USDA Rural Development's
Cooperative Programs, Mail STOP 3250, Room 4016-South, 1400
Independence Avenue, SW., Washington, DC 20250-3250, Telephone: (202)
690-0368 (TDD: (800) 877-8339 Federal Information Relay Service), e-
VIII. Non-Discrimination Statement
USDA prohibits discrimination in all its programs and activities on
the basis of race, color, national origin, age, disability, and where
applicable, sex, marital status, familial status, parental status,
religion, sexual orientation, genetic information, political beliefs,
reprisal, or because all or part of an individual's income is derived
from any public assistance program. (Not all prohibited bases apply to
all programs.) Persons with disabilities who require alternative means
for communication of program information (Braille, large print,
audiotape, etc.) should contact USDA's TARGET Center at (202) 720-2600
(voice and TDD). To file a complaint of discrimination, write to USDA,
Director, Office of Civil Rights, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW.,
Washington, DC 20250-9410, or call (800) 795-3272 (voice), or (202)
720-6382 (TDD). ``USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer, and
Dated: April 14, 2006.
Jackie J. Gleason,
Acting Administrator, Rural Business-Cooperative Service.
[FR Doc. E6-5913 Filed 4-19-06; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3410-XY-P