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Notice

Inviting Applications for the Rural Economic Development Loan and Grant Programs for Fiscal Year 2014

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AGENCY:

Rural Business-Cooperative Service, USDA.

ACTION:

Notice.

SUMMARY:

This Notice is to invite applications for loans and grants under the Rural Economic Development Loan and Grant (REDLG) programs pursuant to 7 CFR part 4280, subpart A for fiscal year (FY) 2014. Funding to support $30.6 million in loans and $9.2 million in grants is currently available. The commitment of program dollars will be made to applicants of selected responses that have fulfilled the necessary requirements for obligation.Start Printed Page 25101

All applicants are responsible for any expenses incurred in developing their applications.

DATES:

Applications received during each month in the USDA Rural Development State Office no later than 4:30 p.m. (local time) on the last business day of each month will be considered for funding the following month in FY 2014.

ADDRESSES:

Submit applications in paper format to the USDA Rural Development State Office in the state where your project is located. A list of the USDA Rural Development State Offices addresses and telephone numbers can be found online at: http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/​StateOfficeAddresses.html.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Please contact the USDA Rural Development State Office provided in the ADDRESSES section of this Notice where the project will be located.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Overview

Federal Agency: Rural Business-Cooperative Service.

Funding Opportunity Type: Rural Economic Development Loans and Grants.

Announcement Type: Initial Announcement.

Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Number: 10.854.

Dates: Application Deadline: Completed applications must be received in the USDA Rural Development State Office no later than 4:30 p.m. (local time) on the last business day of each month to be considered for funding in the following month in FY 2014.

I. Funding Opportunity Description

A. Purpose of the Program. The purpose of the program is to promote rural economic development and job creation projects.

B. Statutory Authority. These programs are authorized under 7 CFR part 4280, subpart A. Assistance provided to rural areas, as defined, under this program may include business startup costs, business expansion, business incubators, technical assistance feasibility studies, advanced telecommunications services and computer networks for medical, educational, and job training services, and community facilities projects for economic development. Awards are made on a competitive basis using specific selection criteria contained in 7 CFR part 4280, subpart A. Information required to be in the application includes an SF-424, “Application for Federal Assistance;” a Resolution of the Board of Directors; AD-1047, “Debarment/Suspension Certification;” Assurance Statement for the Uniform Act; Restrictions on Lobbying, AD-1049, “Certification Regarding Drug-Free Workplace Requirements;” Form RD 400-1, “Equal Opportunity Agreement;” Form RD 400-4, “Assurance Agreement;” Seismic Certification (if construction); Form RD 1940-20, “Request for Environmental Information;” RUS Form 7, “Financial and Statistical Report;” and RUS Form 7a, “Investments, Loan Guarantees, and Loans,” or similar information; and written narrative of project description. Applications will be tentatively scored by the State Offices and submitted to the National Office for review.

Definitions

C. Definition of Terms. The definitions applicable to this Notice are published at 7 CFR 4280.3.

D. Application awards. The Agency will review, evaluate, and score applications received in response to this Notice based on the provisions found in 7 CFR part 4280, subpart A and as indicated in this Notice. However, the Agency advises all interested parties that the applicant bears the burden in preparing and submitting an application in response to this Notice whether or not funding is appropriated for these programs in FY 2014.

II. Award Information

Type of Awards: Loans and Grants.

Fiscal Year Funds: FY 2014.

Maximum Award: The following are maximum amounts per award: Loans—$2,000,000; Grants—$300,000.

Award Dates: The last day of the month following the month in which application was received.

III. Eligibility Information

A. Eligible Applicants

Loans and grants may be made to any entity that is identified by USDA Rural Development as an eligible borrower under the Rural Electrification Act. In accordance with 7 CFR 4280.13, applicants that are not delinquent on any Federal debt or otherwise disqualified from participation in these programs are eligible to apply. An applicant must be eligible under 7 U.S.C. 940c. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, any former Rural Utilities Service borrower that has repaid or prepaid an insured, direct or guaranteed loan under the Rural Electrification Act of 1936, or any not-for-profit utility that is eligible to receive an insured or direct loan under such Act, shall be eligible for assistance under section 313(b)(2)(B) of such Act in the same manner as a borrower under such Act. All other restrictions in this Notice will apply.

B. Cost Sharing or Matching

For loans, either the Ultimate Recipient or the Intermediary must provide supplemental funds for the project equal to at least 20 percent of the loan to the Intermediary. For grants, the Intermediary must establish a Revolving Loan Fund and contribute an amount equal to at least 20 percent of the Grant. The supplemental contribution must come from Intermediary's funds which may not be from other Federal Grants, unless permitted by law.

C. Other Eligibility Requirements

Applications will only be accepted for projects that promote rural economic development and job creation.

D. Completeness Eligibility

Applications will not be considered for funding if they do not provide sufficient information to determine eligibility or are missing required elements.

IV. Fiscal Year 2014 Application and Submission Information

A. Address to Request Application Package

For further information, entities wishing to apply for assistance should contact the Rural Development State Office identified in this Notice to obtain copies of the application package.

Applicants are encouraged to submit grant applications only through the Grants.gov Web site at: http://www.grants.gov. Applications may be submitted in either electronic or paper format. Users of Grants.gov will be able to download a copy of the application package, complete it off line, and then upload and submit the application via the Grants.gov Web site. Applications may not be submitted by electronic mail.

  • When you enter the Grants.gov Web site, you will find information about submitting an application electronically through the site as well as the hours of operation. USDA Rural Development strongly recommends that you do not wait until the application deadline date to begin the application process through Grants.gov. To use Grants.gov, applicants must have a Dun and Bradstreet Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number which can be obtained at no cost via a toll-free request line at 1-866-705-5711 or at http://www.dnb.com. Start Printed Page 25102
  • You may submit all documents electronically through the Web site, including all information typically included on the application for REDLGs and all necessary assurances and certifications.
  • After electronically submitting an application through the Web site, the applicant will receive an automatic acknowledgement from Grants.gov that contains a Grants.gov tracking number.
  • USDA Rural Development may request that the applicant provide original signatures on forms at a later date.
  • If applicants experience technical difficulties on the closing date and are unable to meet the deadline, you may submit a paper copy of your application to your respective Rural Development State Office. Paper applications submitted to a Rural Development State Office must meet the closing date and local time deadline.
  • Please note that applicants must locate the downloadable application package for this program by the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Number or FedGrants Funding Opportunity Number, which can be found at http://www.grants.gov.

B. Content and Form of Submission

An application must contain all of the required elements. Each selection priority criterion outlined in 7 CFR 4280.42(b), must be addressed in the application. Failure to address any of the criteria will result in a zero-point score for that criterion and will impact the overall evaluation of the application. Copies of 7 CFR part 4280, subpart A, will be provided to any interested applicant making a request to a Rural Development State Office. An original copy only of the application is to be filed with the Rural Development State Office for the State where the Intermediary is located.

C. Submission Dates and Times

Application Dates: No later than 4:30 p.m. (local time) on the last business day of each month to be considered for funding in the following month.

Explanation of Dates: Applications must be in the USDA Rural Development State Office by the dates as indicated above.

V. Application Review Information

The National Office will score applications based on the grant selection criteria and weights contained in 7 CFR part 4280, subpart A, and will select an Intermediary

subject to the Intermediary's satisfactory submission of the additional items required by

that subpart and the USDA Rural Development Letter of Conditions.

VI. Award Administration Information

A. Award Notices

Successful applicants will receive notification for funding from the Rural Development State Office. Applicants must comply with all applicable statutes and regulations before the loan/grant award will be approved. Provided the application and eligibility requirements have not changed, an application not selected will be reconsidered in three subsequent funding competitions for a total of four competitions. If an application is withdrawn, it can be resubmitted and will be evaluated as a new application.

B. Administrative and National Policy Requirements

Additional requirements that apply to Intermediary's selected for this program can be found in 7 CFR part 4280, subpart A. Applicable provisions of 7 CFR parts 3015, 3019, and 3052 also apply.

VII. Agency Contacts

For general questions about this announcement, please contact your USDA Rural Development State Office provided in the ADDRESSES section of this Notice.

VIII. Paperwork Reduction Act

In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the information collection requirement contained in this Notice is approved by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under OMB Control Number 0570-0024.

Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act

All applicants, in accordance with 2 CFR part 25, must have a DUNS number, which can be obtained at no cost via a toll-free request line at 1-866-705-5711 or online at http://fedgov.dnb.com/​webor. Similarly, all grant applicants must be registered in the System for Award Management (SAM) prior to submitting an application. Applicants may register for the SAM at http://www.sam.gov. All recipients of Federal financial grant assistance are required to report information about first-tier sub-awards and executive total compensation in accordance with 2 CFR part 170.

Nondiscrimination Statement:

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) prohibits discrimination against its customers, employees, and applicants for employment on the bases of race, color, national origin, age, disability, sex, gender identity, religion, reprisal, and where applicable, political beliefs, marital status, familial or parental status, sexual orientation, or all or part of an individual's income is derived from any public assistance program, or protected genetic information in employment or in any program or activity conducted or funded by the Department. (Not all prohibited bases will apply to all programs and/or employment activities.)

If you wish to file a Civil Rights program complaint of discrimination, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form (PDF), found online at http://www.ascr.usda.gov/​complaint_​filing_​cust.html, or at any USDA office, or call (866) 632-9992 to request the form. You may also write a letter containing all of the information requested in the form. Send your completed complaint form or letter to us by mail at U.S. Department of Agriculture, Director, Office of Adjudication, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20250-9410, by fax (202) 690-7442 or email at program.intake@usda.gov.

Individuals who are deaf, hard of hearing, or have speech disabilities and wish to file either an EEO or program complaint may contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339 or (800) 845-6136 (in Spanish).

Persons with disabilities, who wish to file a program complaint, please see information above on how to contact us by mail directly or by email. If you require alternative means of communication for program information (e.g., Braille, large print, audiotape, etc.) please contact USDA's TARGET Center at (202) 720-2600 (voice and TDD).

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Dated: April 25, 2014.

Lillian E. Salerno,

Administrator, Rural Business-Cooperative Service.

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[FR Doc. 2014-10096 Filed 5-1-14; 8:45 am]

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