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Office of Postsecondary Education; Programs

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ACTION:

Notice inviting applications for designation as an eligible institution.

Strengthening Institutions Program (SIP), American Indian Tribally Controlled Colleges and Universities (TCCU), Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian-Serving Institutions (ANNH), Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander-Serving Institutions (AANAPISI), Native American Serving Nontribal Institutions (NASNTI), Developing Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSI), Hispanic-Serving Institutions (STEM and ARTICULATION), Promoting Postbaccalaureate Opportunities for Hispanic Americans (PPOHA), and Predominantly Black Institutions (PBI) Programs for Fiscal Year (FY) 2011.

Purpose of Programs: The SIP, TCCU, ANNH, AANAPISI, NASNTI, and PBI Programs are authorized under Title III, Part A, of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended (HEA). Under these programs, institutions of higher education (IHEs or institutions) are eligible to apply for grants if they meet specific statutory and regulatory eligibility requirements. Similarly, IHEs are eligible to apply for grants under Title V of the HEA if they meet specific statutory and regulatory requirements. The HSI, HSI (STEM and ARTICULATION), and PPOHA Programs are authorized under Title V, Parts A and B of the HEA. In addition, under Title III of the HEA, institutions applying for grants under the AANAPISI and NASNTI Programs must be eligible institutions as defined in section 312(b) of the HEA. Institutions applying for grants under the PBI Program must be eligible institutions as defined in section 318(b)(1) of the HEA.

An IHE that is designated as an eligible institution may also receive a waiver of certain non-Federal cost-share requirements under the Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG), the Federal Work Study (FWS), the Student Support Services (SSS), and the Undergraduate International Studies and Foreign Language (UISFL) Programs. The FSEOG, FWS, and SSS Programs are authorized under Title IV of the HEA. The UISFL Program is authorized under Title VI of the HEA. Qualified institutions may receive these waivers even if they are not recipients of grant funds under the Title III or Title V Programs.

Special Note:

To qualify as an eligible institution under the Title III or Title V Programs, your institution must satisfy several criteria, including one related to needy student enrollment and one related to average educational and general (E&G) expenditures for a specified base year. The most recent data available for E&G expenditures are for base year 2008-2009. In order to award FY 2011 grants in a timely manner, we will use the most recent data available. Therefore, we use E&G expenditure threshold data from the base year 2008-2009. In completing your eligibility application, please use E&G expenditure data from the base year 2008-2009.

If you are designated as an eligible institution and you do not receive a new award under the Title III or Title V Programs in FY 2011, your eligibility for the non-Federal cost-share waiver under the FSEOG, the FWS, the SSS, and the UISFL Programs is valid for five consecutive years. You will not need to reapply for eligibility until 2016, unless you wish to apply for a new Title III or Title V grant. All institutions interested in applying for a new FY 2011 Title III or Title V grant or requesting a waiver of the non-Federal cost share, must apply for eligibility designation in FY 2011. Under the HEA, any institution interested in applying for a grant under any of these programs must first be designated as an eligible institution.

The notice for applying for designation as an eligible institution for FY 2010 was reopened on August 13, 2010, 74 FR 64059, and applications were due on September 13, 2010. That reopening of the application period applied only to those institutions that intended to apply for new awards in the specified program competitions. All institutions intending to apply for funding in any of the other Title III or V competitions held in 2011 must apply for designation as an eligible institution in accordance with this announcement.

Eligible Applicants: To qualify as an eligible institution under the Title III or Title V Programs, an accredited institution must, among other requirements, have an enrollment of needy students, and its average E&G expenditures per full-time equivalent (FTE) undergraduate student must be low in comparison with the average E&G expenditures per FTE undergraduate student of institutions that offer similar instruction.

The eligibility requirements for the Title III Programs are found in 34 CFR 607.2 through 607.5. The regulations may be accessed at the following Web site: http://www.access.gpo.gov/​nara/​cfr/​waisidx_​02/​34cfr607_​02.html.

The eligibility requirements for the Title V, HSI Program are found in 34 CFR 606.2 through 34 CFR 606.5. The regulations may be accessed at the following Web site: http://www.access.gpo.gov/​nara/​cfr/​waisidx_​01/​34cfr606_​01.html.

The requirements for the PPOHA Program are found in the notice of final requirements published in the Federal Register on July 27, 2010 (75 FR 44055) (PPOHA NFP). Among the requirements established for the PPOHA Program in the PPOHA NFP are the use of the regulations in 34 CFR 606.2(a) and (b), and 606.3 through 606.5.

Enrollment of Needy Students: Under 34 CFR 606.3(a) and 607.3(a) and, for the PPOHA Program, Requirement 1—Eligibility Criteria (Use of 34 CFR 606.2(a) and (b), 606.3 through 606.5) in the PPOHA NFP, an institution is considered to have an enrollment of needy students if: (1) At least 50 percent of its degree students received financial assistance under one or more of the following programs: Federal Pell Grant, FSEOG, FWS, or the Federal Perkins Loan Programs; or (2) the percentage of its undergraduate degree students who were enrolled on at least a half-time basis and received Federal Pell Grants exceeded the median percentage of undergraduate degree students who were enrolled on at least a half-time basis and received Federal Pell Grants at comparable institutions that offer similar instruction.

To qualify under this latter criterion, an institution's Federal Pell Grant percentage for base year 2008-2009 must be more than the median for its category of comparable institutions provided in the 2008-2009 Median Pell Grant and Average E&G Expenditures per FTE Student Table in this notice.Start Printed Page 76450

For the PBI Program, see section 318(b)(2) of the HEA for the definition of “Enrollment of Needy Students.” Educational and General Expenditures per FTE Student: An institution should compare its 2008-2009 average E&G expenditures per FTE student to the average E&G expenditure per FTE student for its category of comparable institutions contained in the 2008-2009 Median Pell Grant and Average E&G Expenditures per FTE Student Table in this notice. The institution meets this eligibility requirement if its average E&G expenditures for the 2008-2009 base year are less than the average for its category of comparable institutions.

An institution's average E&G expenditures are the total amount it expended during the base year for instruction, research, public service, academic support, student services, institutional support including library expenditures, operation and maintenance, scholarships and fellowships, and mandatory transfers.

The following table identifies the relevant median Federal Pell Grant percentages for the base year 2008-2009 and the relevant average E&G expenditures per FTE student for the base year 2008-2009 for the four categories of comparable institutions:

Type of Institution2008-2009 Median Pell Grant Percentage2008-2009 Average E&G Expenditures per FTE Student
2-year Public Institutions25.85$11,111
2-year Non-profit Private Institutions35.8123,266
4-year Public Institutions24.8227,597
4-year Non-profit Private Institutions25.5345,093

Waiver Information: IHEs that are unable to meet the needy student enrollment requirement or the average E&G expenditures requirement may apply to the Secretary for waivers of these requirements, as described in 34 CFR 606.3(b), 606.4(c) and (d), 607.3(b), and 607.4(c) and (d). Institutions requesting a waiver of the needy student enrollment requirement or the average E&G expenditures requirement must include in their application detailed information supporting the waiver request, as described in the instructions for completing the application.

The regulations governing the Secretary's authority to waive the needy student requirement, 34 CFR 606.3(b)(2) and (3) and 607.3(b)(2) and (3), refer to “low-income” students or families. The regulations at 34 CFR 606.3(c) and 607.3(c) define “low-income” as an amount that does not exceed 150 percent of the amount equal to the poverty level, as established by the U.S. Bureau of the Census.

For the purposes of this waiver provision, the following table sets forth the low-income levels for the various sizes of families:

2008 Annual Low-Income Levels

Size of family unitFamily income for the 48 contiguous states, D.C., and outlying jurisdictionsFamily income for AlaskaFamily income for Hawaii
1$15,600$19,500$17,940
221,00026,25024,150
326,40033,00030,360
431,80039,75036,570
537,20046,50042,780
642,60053,25048,990
748,00060,00055,200
853,40066,75061,410

Note:

The 2008 annual low-income levels are being used because those are the amounts that apply to the family income reported by students enrolled for the fall 2008 semester. For family units with more than eight members, add the following amount for each additional family member: $5,400 for the contiguous 48 States, the District of Columbia and outlying jurisdictions; $6,750 for Alaska; and $6,210 for Hawaii.

The figures shown under family income represent amounts equal to 150 percent of the family income levels established by the U.S. Bureau of the Census for determining poverty status. The poverty guidelines were published by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services in the Federal Register on January 23, 2008 (73 FR 3971-3972).

The information about “metropolitan statistical areas” referenced in 34 CFR 606.3(b)(4) and 607.3(b)(4) may be obtained by requesting the Metropolitan Statistical Areas, 1999 Publication, Order Number PB99-501538, from the National Technical Information Service, Document Sales, 5301 Shawnee Road, Alexandria, VA 22312, telephone number: 1-800-553-6847. There is a charge for this publication.

Applications Available: December 8, 2010.

Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: January 31, 2011 for an applicant institution that wishes to be designated as eligible to apply for a FY 2011 new grant under the Title III or Title V Programs and February 28, 2011 for an applicant institution that wishes to apply only for cost-sharing waivers under the FSEOG, FWS, SSS, or UISFL Programs.

Electronic Submission of Applications

Applications for designation of eligibility must be submitted electronically using the following Web site: https://opeweb.ed.gov/​title3and5/​.

To enter the Web site, you must use your institution's unique 8-digit identifier, i.e., your Office of Postsecondary Education Identification Number (OPE ID Number). Your business office or student financial aid office should have the OPE ID Number. Start Printed Page 76451If not, contact the Department using the e-mail addresses of the contact persons listed in this notice under FOR APPLICATIONS AND FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT. You will find detailed instructions for completing the application form electronically under the “eligibility 2010” link at either of the following Web sites: http://www.ed.gov/​programs/​iduestitle3a/​index.html or http://www.ed.gov/​hsi.

If your institution is unable to meet the needy student enrollment requirement or the average E&G expenditure requirement and wishes to request a waiver of one or both of these requirements, you must complete your designation application form electronically and transmit your waiver request narrative document from the following Web site: https://opeweb.ed.gov/​title3and5/​.

Exception to Electronic Submission Requirement: You may 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 electronically because—

  • You do not have access to the Internet; or
  • You do not have the capacity to upload documents to the Web site; 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 prevent 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: Darlene B. Collins, U.S. Department of Education, 1990 K Street, NW., room 6033, Washington, DC 20006-8513. Fax: (202) 502-7861.

Your paper application must be submitted in accordance with the mail or hand delivery instructions described in this notice.

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 (using the U.S. Postal Service or commercial carrier) the application, on or before the application deadline date, to the Department at the following address: Darlene B. Collins, U.S. Department of Education, 1990 K Street, NW., Room 6033, Washington, DC 20006-8513.

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; or

(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; or

(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.

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 application, on or before the application deadline date, to the Department at the following address: Darlene B. Collins, U.S. Department of Education, 1990 K Street, NW., Room 6033, Washington, DC 20006-8513.

Hand delivered applications will be accepted daily between 8:00 a.m. and 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, except Saturdays, Sundays, and Federal holidays.

Applicable Regulations: (a) The Education Department General Administrative Regulations in 34 CFR parts 74, 75, 77, 79, 82, 84, 85, 86, 97, 98, and 99. (b) The regulations for the Title III Programs in 34 CFR part 607, and for the HSI Program in 34 CFR part 606. (c) The notice of final requirements for the PPOHA Program, published in the Federal Register on July 27, 2010 (75 FR 44055).

Note:

There are no program-specific regulations for the AANAPISI, NASNTI, and PBI Programs. Accordingly, we encourage each potential applicant to read the HEA, the authorizing statute, for program-specific requirements for the AANAPISI, NASNTI, and PBI Programs.

For Applications and Further Information Contact: Kelley Harris or Carnisia Proctor, Institutional Development and Undergraduate Education Service, U.S. Department of Education, 1990 K Street, NW., room 6033, Request for Eligibility Designation, Washington, DC 20006-8513.

You can contact these individuals at the following e-mail addresses or phone numbers:

Kelley.Harris@ed.gov, 202-219-7083.

Carnisia.Proctor@ed.gov, 202-502-7606.

If you use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD), call the Federal Relay Service (FRS), toll free, at 1-800-877-8339.

Individuals with disabilities can obtain this document in an accessible format (e.g., braille, large print, audio tape, or computer diskette) on request to one of the contact persons listed in this section.

Electronic Access to This Document: 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) on the Internet at the following site: http://www.ed.gov/​news/​fedregister. To use PDF, you must have Adobe Acrobat Reader, which is available free at this site.

Note:

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 on GPO Access at: http://www.gpoaccess.gov/​nara/​index.html.

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Program Authority: 20 U.S.C. 1057-1059g, 1067q and 1101-1103g.

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Dated: December 3, 2010.

Eduardo M. Ochoa,

Assistant Secretary for Postsecondary Education.

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[FR Doc. 2010-30817 Filed 12-7-10; 8:45 am]

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