Friday, September 18, 2015

TANF Community Investment Program Application


Mesa County
Temporary Aid to Needy Families
Community Investment Program
2016 Funding
Application Materials


General Information
The Mesa County Department of Human Services (DHS) announces the availability of federal Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) funds to be awarded in the form of grants for the delivery of services to accomplish one or more of the following federal goals of the TANF program:

·         Provide assistance to needy families so that children may be cared for in their own homes or in the homes of relatives;
·         Reduce dependency of needy families on government benefits by promoting job preparation, training, and employment;
·         Prevent and reduce out-of-wedlock births; and
·         Encourage the formation and maintenance of two-parent families.


DHS is responsible for administering the TANF Program that transitions individuals from reliance upon public assistance to self-sufficiency.  DHS invites your application for the Community Investment Program through a competitive selection process of Request for Applications (RFA) utilizing the TANF Block Grant as its source of funding. Priority will be given to proposals that increase the likelihood of employment and self-sufficiency.

Community Participation
To further describe the 2016 focus of funds, the process for applying, and to answer applicant questions, a community meeting will be held from 5:30-7 p.m. on Tuesday, September 8, 2015, in Business Center Room B of the Workforce Center Building, 512 29 ½ Road, Grand Junction, CO 81504. For additional information, contact Sara Tourney via email (sara.tourney@mesacounty.us) or phone (970.248.2831).

Anticipated Timetable
Request for Applications Issued                                  September 1, 2015
Community meeting/open house                               September 8, 2015
Deadline for Application Submissions                        September 30, 2015
Award Letters Sent                                                     October/November 2015
Grant Agreements executed                                      November 2015
Funding Begins                                                            January 1, 2016

Application Review Information
An Application Evaluation Committee will be convened to review and evaluate applicant proposals. The evaluation form is attached for your reference (Appendix A). Applicants will be evaluated based on the following criteria:

·         Organizational Experience and Capacity
o   Describe your experience in delivering social service programs and working with poor and vulnerable populations in the community. Explain your capacity to plan and implement a sound program with adequate staffing, partnerships, training, and technical assistance.
·         Program Design
o   Outline the significance, innovation, and beneficial impact of the program to address the need or problem described in the aforementioned section. 
·         Outcomes and Performance Measures
o   Identify goals and objectives and link them to specific measurements (indicators/factors) for program evaluation and effectiveness in determining the overall impact of the program.
·         Monitoring and Evaluation
o   Describe how your agency will evaluate the success of the program and how often the evaluation will take place.

Applications that meet the requirements of this RFA will be rated against the criteria listed above on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being most desirable.  A decision committee will review the applications and make the determination as to which programs most closely identify with the goals of the TANF program and the priorities of employment and self-sufficiency.



Award Announcement
The successful applicants will be notified through the issuance of a notice of intended grant award.  Applicants may not receive the full amount of the funding request. The grant award and signing will be contingent upon the size of the award.

Organizations whose applications will not be funded will be notified in writing and be given an opportunity to appeal the decision.

Reporting Requirements
Monthly Financial Report:  A financial status report is required to be submitted 15 days after the end of each month to account for all expenditures to conduct the program.

Quarterly Performance Reports:  Awardees must submit a quarterly progress report to DHS within 30 days after the end of each quarter. A detailed account of activities, program success stories, promising approaches, and performance outcomes achieved.

Final Programmatic and Financial Reports: Grantees are required to submit a closeout report to DHS 60 days after the close of the program period.  Includes a comprehensive evaluation of the effectiveness of the program, whether the anticipated outcomes were achieved, and any problems encountered and lessons learned.

Monitoring
Selected programs will be monitored frequently by DHS Contract Manager, Sara Tourney.  Monitoring may include a review of eligibility documents, financial documents, and other as deemed necessary by the contract manager.

Administrative Costs
As a general rule, administrative costs for TANF funded services should be no more than fifteen (15) percent of an entity’s total allocation.  Special permission to deviate above this standard must be substantiated in writing and approved by DHS prior to the approval of any grant agreement. The examples below should help illustrate the types of cost allocations that would generally be considered to be administrative or non-administrative costs.

The cost of salaries and related benefits should be calculated only for the percentage of time personnel works on TANF-funded activities.  For example, a program director may be employed full time, but only 4 hours per week is allocated for TANF-funded activities.  Only that portion of salary and benefits should be considered as an allowable cost, not the entire salary.

The following are guidelines as to what is considered an administrative cost:
Ø  General administration or coordination of program, including accounting and payroll functions;
Ø  Salaries and indirect costs associated with performing administrative functions;
Ø  Supplies, equipment, travel, postage, utilities and office space related to the administration of a program;
Ø  Activities related to eligibility determinations;
Ø  Preparation of program plan, budget and schedules; and
Ø  Program monitoring.

The following are guidelines as to what is considered a non-administrative cost:
Ø  Direct cost of providing program services including client activities, assessment, case management, etc.;
Ø  Salaries and indirect costs associated with performing services functions;
Ø  Supplies, equipment, travel, postage, utilities, and office space related to the performing of services functions;
Ø  Evaluations and audits of service functions; and
Ø  Technology/management information systems not related to payroll, personnel or other administrative functions.

The following are not generally considered allowable costs under TANF, even if they are related to program operations:
Ø  Inherently religious activities
Ø  Purchase of vehicles
Ø  Renovation, construction or purchase of a building used for program operation
Ø  Payment of bad debts, or interest payments as a result of credit agreements
Ø  Medical services
Ø  Purchase of alcohol
Ø  Any clothing such as T-shirts
Ø  Match for other federal funds
Ø  Lobbying costs
Ø  Penalties, fines, etc.
Ø  Replacement of funds for existing programs
Ø  Expenditures DHS determines are not allowable uses of TANF funds.


Application




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