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< Back to current issue of Immigration Daily < Back to current issue of Immigrant's Weekly

[Federal Register: May 24, 2002 (Volume 67, Number 101)]
[Page 36632-36637]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access []



Administration for Children and Families

Refugee Microenterprise Development Program

AGENCY: Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR), ACF, DHHS.

ACTION: Notice of availability of FY 2002 social services discretionary 
funds for refugee microenterprise development projects.


SUMMARY: The Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) invites eligible 
entities to submit competitive grant applications for microenterprise 
development projects for refugees.\1\ Applications will be accepted 
pursuant to the Director's discretionary authority under section 412(c) 
of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) (8 U.S.C. 1522), as 
amended. Applications will be screened and evaluated as indicated in 
this program announcement. Awards will be contingent on the outcome of 
the competition and the availability of funds.

    \1\ In addition to persons who meet all requirements of 45 CFR 
400.43, eligibility for refugee social services also includes: (1) 
Cuban and Haitian entrants under section 501 of the Refugee 
Education Assistance Act of 1980 (Pub. L. 96-422); (2) certain 
Amerasians from Vietnam who are admitted to the U.S. as immigrants 
under section 584 of the Foreign Operations, Export Financing, and 
Related Programs Appropriations Act, as included in FY 1988 
Continuing Resolution (Pub. L. 100-202); and (3) certain Amerasians 
from Vietnam, including U.S. citizens, under Title II of the Foreign 
Operations, Export Financing, and Related Programs Appropriations 
Act of 1989 (Pub. L. 10-461), 1990 (Pub. L. 101-167), and 1991 (Pub. 
L. 101-513). For convenience, the term ``refugee'' is used in this 
notice to encompass all such eligible persons.

DATES: The closing date for submission of applications is July 8, 2002. 
See Part IV of this announcement for more information on submitting 
    Announcement Availability: The program announcement and the 
application materials are available on the ORR website at

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Henley Portner, Division of Community 
Resettlement, Office of Refugee Resettlement, Administration for 
Children and Families, at (202) 401-5363 or HPortner@ACF.DHHS.GOV.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: This program announcement consists of four 
    Part I: Background, legislative authority, funding availability, 
CFDA Number, applicant eligibility, project and budget periods, program 
purpose and scope, client eligibility, allowable activities, and 
treatment of program income.
    Part II: General instructions for preparing a full project 
    Part III: The Review Process--Intergovernmental review, initial ACF 
screening, competitive review, and review criteria.
    Part IV: The Application--Application materials, application 
submission information, regulations, and reporting.
    Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (Pub. L. 104-13): Public reporting 
burden for this collection of information is estimated to average 25 
hours, including the time for reviewing instructions, gathering and 
maintaining the data needed, and reviewing the collection of 
information. The following information collections are included in the 
program announcement: OMB Approval No. 0970-0139, ACF Uniform Project 
Description (UPD) which expires 12/31/2003. An agency may not conduct 
or sponsor, and a person is not required to respond to, a collection of 
information unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number.

Part I: Background

    The Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) has supported the field of 
microenterprise development since 1991 with discretionary grants to 
various State governments, community economic development agencies, 
community action and other human service agencies, local mutual 
assistance associations, and voluntary agencies. Organizations with 
successful programs have typically been those with a long-term 
commitment to microenterprise and to its adaptation to the refugee 
experience. They have committed agency resources to support refugee 
programs; and their work in refugee microenterprise has been consistent 
with the overall agency mission. A public or private non-profit agency 
interested in receiving funding under this announcement must analyze 
its organizational capacity to work with refugees who are economically 
poor, who have limited English language proficiency, and who have 
neither assets nor American business experience. Many newly arrived 
refugees do not qualify for commercial loans or for admission into 
mainstream microenterprise development programs for these reasons.
    Refugees bring positive attributes to microenterprise development 
projects, including a diverse and rich array of business ideas, skills, 
experiences, and ambitions. These characteristics have been largely 
responsible for the success

[[Page 36633]]

of the ORR initiative. During the last ten years, refugees have started 
or expanded over 800 micro-businesses; and over 89 percent of these 
businesses have survived. ORR grantees have provided over $3 million in 
financing to these entrepreneurs; and the loan repayment rate is close 
to 100 percent. By commonly accepted measures of performance (business 
survival rates, loan default rates, etc.), the ORR-funded programs have 
excelled and frequently led the field in achievement. More important, 
over 4,000 refugees have gained new entrepreneurial skills and 
knowledge; and the additional business income is helping refugee 
families to achieve economic self-sufficiency.
    Building on the experience of the last ten years, ORR seeks in this 
announcement to continue support to this field, particularly on behalf 
of those refugees who, because of language and cultural barriers, are 
unlikely to gain access to commercial loans or business training 
through other programs. To be successful in this competition, refugee-
serving organizations must demonstrate their agency's capacity to 
provide the technical expertise to help refugees start or expand 
businesses. Economic development agencies must show how they will 
modify their existing programs to serve refugees effectively.
    Legislative Authority: Section 412(c)(1)(A) of the Immigration and 
Nationality Act (INA)(8 U.S.C. 1522(c)(1)(A)) authorizes the Director 
``to make grants to, and enter into contracts with, public or private 
nonprofit agencies for projects specifically designed--(i) to assist 
refugees in obtaining the skills which are necessary for economic self-
sufficiency, including projects for job training, employment services, 
day care, professional refresher training, and other recertification 
services; (ii) to provide training in English where necessary 
(regardless of whether the refugees are employed or receiving cash or 
other assistance); and (iii) to provide where specific needs have been 
shown and recognized by the Director, health (including mental health) 
services, social services, educational and other services.''
    Funding Availability: ORR expects to make available approximately 
$2.5 million for Microenterprise Development projects for about 12 to 
20 awards in amounts ranging from $100,000-$200,000.
    The Director reserves the right to award less, or more, than the 
funds described, in the absence of worthy applications, or under such 
other circumstances as may be deemed to be in the best interest of the 
government. Applicants may be required to reduce the scope of projects 
based on the amount of the approved grant award.
    CFDA Number: The Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance number for 
this program is 93.576. The title of the program is the Refugee 
Microenterprise Development Program.
    Applicant Eligibility: Eligible applicants are public and private 
non-profit organizations and agencies of State governments that are 
responsible for the refugee program under 45 CFR 400.5. Faith-based 
organizations are eligible to apply for these grants.
    Project and Budget Periods: This announcement invites applications 
for project periods up to three years. Awards, on a competitive basis, 
will be for a one-year budget period, although project periods may be 
for three years. Applications for continuation grants funded under 
these awards beyond the one-year budget period but within the three-
year project period will be entertained in subsequent years on a 
noncompetitive basis, subject to availability of funds, satisfactory 
progress of the grantee, and a determination that continued funding 
would be in the best interest of the Government.
    Refugee Microenterprise Development Program Purpose and Scope: The 
purpose of microenterprise development is to assist refugees in 
becoming economically self-sufficient and to help refugee communities 
in developing employment and capital resources.
    Applicants may request funds for microenterprise development 
projects to include business technical assistance or short-term 
training, credit in the form of microloans, the administrative costs of 
managing the project, and, if applicable, a revolving microloan fund. 
Projects should be designed in a manner that is culturally and 
linguistically appropriate for the refugee population.
    Projects should be designed to be appropriate for the 
characteristics of the local refugee populations, including 
characteristics such as employment rates, welfare status, length of 
time in the U.S., interest in micro-businesses, and English language 
proficiency. Applicants should also be familiar with the capital needs 
and capital market gaps for refugee entrepreneurs and should 
demonstrate how refugees will gain access to business credit.
    Successful applicants will demonstrate an understanding of the 
economic opportunities in the community for refugees and will have 
established working partnerships with the communities' refugee 
resettlement services network, with existing microenterprise 
organizations (where they are present), and with financial 
    ORR will not fund applicants who propose to subgrant or contract 
all or most of the proposed activities under this initiative to an 
unrelated entity. This does not bar subgranting or contracting for 
specific services or activities.
    Client Eligibility: Eligible clients are refugees who aspire to 
establish, expand, or stabilize a microenterprise but who lack the 
financial resources, credit history, or personal assets to qualify for 
business loans or assistance through commercial institutions. Refugees 
may participate regardless of their date of arrival in the U.S. 
Grantees will be responsible for documenting refugee client 
    Allowable Activities: Project components may include one-on-one 
business consultation and training, training in classroom settings, 
access to business credit, individual or peer group lending, and 
follow-up technical assistance to refugee businesses. ORR funds may 
also be used for the administrative costs associated with a loan loss 
reserve fund or with managing a revolving loan fund.
    Microloans consist of small amounts of credit that are less than 
$15,000 and are extended to low-income entrepreneurs for start-ups of 
microenterprises or for expansion or stabilization of existing 
microenterprises. Applicants may elect to establish cooperative 
relationships with one or more of the community's financial 
institutions to obtain access to commercial loan funds. Alternatively, 
ORR funds may be used for microloans to individual refugee 
entrepreneurs in sums not to exceed $15,000 (of ORR monies). These 
funds may be disbursed through individual loans or through peer lending 
mechanisms, through a revolving loan fund. Requests for ORR grant funds 
for a revolving loan fund may not exceed $50,000 in the first budget 
period. Grantees will be responsible for establishing written lending 
policies and procedures and for collecting and servicing loan 
    ORR supports the use of commercial lending institutions for refugee 
borrowers to leverage the limited amount of ORR funds available for 
this purpose and to provide borrowers with the opportunity to establish 
credit-worthy histories with traditional lenders. To that end, ORR does 
not encourage the use of below-market rates of interest for the loan 
funds. Conversely, grantees may not charge refugees interest rates that 
exceed four

[[Page 36634]]

percentage points above the New York prime lending rate at the time of 
loan approval.
    Microloans will have a maximum maturity of three years. They may be 
used for working capital, inventory, supplies, furniture, fixtures, 
machinery, tools, equipment, building renovation, and/or leasehold 
    Microloan funds may not be used for the following types of 
    [sbull] As venture capital for established businesses that are 
attempting major expansion;
    [sbull] For enterprises engaged in gambling or speculation;
    [sbull] For any illegal activity or production or for the service 
or distribution of illegal products;
    [sbull] For purposes not related to microenterprise development; 
e.g., for the purchase of a personal-use automobile.
    Treatment of Program Income: Projects with revolving loan funds may 
earn and retain program income in the form of interest (on individual 
loans or from loan loss reserves). Specifically, program income funds 
may be retained by the project to expand the pool of credit in 
accordance with 45 CFR 74.24 (b)(1), (b)(2) and (e) for non-profit 
organizations and 45 CFR 92.25 (g)(2) for governmental entities. 
Similarly, repaid loan principal is to be treated as program income and 
placed in the revolving loan fund for re-lending. Program income may be 
retained by the grantee so long as the use of these funds furthers the 
objectives of the grant and is consistent with the Federal statute 
under which the grant was made.
    Any fees or charges imposed on refugee clients by the grantee or 
its subcontractors or affiliates (e.g., loan processing or training 
fees) must be disclosed in the application and pre-approved by ORR.
    Successful grantees will be expected to coordinate their policies 
and procedures for developing and administering refugee microenterprise 
projects with the existing refugee microenterprise services network. To 
ensure an exchange of technical and training information among 
programs, all grantees are encouraged to attend two ORR training 
meetings during each year of their participation in this program area. 
Grant funds may be used to offset the cost of attendance.

Part II: General Instructions for Preparing a Full Project Description

The Project Description Overview

    The project description provides a major means by which an 
application is evaluated and ranked to compete with other applications 
for available assistance. The project description should be concise and 
complete and should address the activity for which Federal funds are 
being requested. Supporting documents should be included where they can 
present information clearly and succinctly. In preparing your project 
description, all information requested through each specific evaluation 
criteria should be provided. Awarding offices use this and other 
information in making their funding recommendations. It is important, 
therefore, that this information be included in the application.
General Instructions
    ACF is particularly interested in specific factual information and 
statements of measurable goals in quantitative terms. Project 
descriptions are evaluated on the basis of substance, not length. 
Extensive exhibits are not required. Cross-referencing should be used 
rather than repetition. Supporting information concerning activities 
that will not be directly funded by the grant or information that does 
not directly pertain to an integral part of the grant-funded activity 
should be placed in an appendix. Pages should be numbered and a table 
of contents should be included for easy reference.
    Applicants required to submit a full project description shall 
prepare the project description statement in accordance with the 
following instructions and the specified evaluation criteria. The 
instructions give a broad overview of what your project description 
should include while the evaluation criteria expands and clarifies more 
program-specific information that is needed.
Project Summary/Abstract
    Provide a summary of the project description (a page or less) with 
reference to the funding request.
Objectives and Need for Assistance
    Clearly identify the physical, economic, social, financial, 
institutional, and/or other problem(s) requiring a solution. The need 
for assistance must be demonstrated and the principal and subordinate 
objectives of the project must be clearly stated; supporting 
documentation, such as letters of support and testimonials from 
concerned interests other than the applicant, may be included. Any 
relevant data based on planning studies should be included or referred 
to in the endnotes/footnotes. Incorporate demographic data and 
participant/beneficiary information, as needed. In developing the 
project description, the applicant may volunteer or be requested to 
provide information on the total range of projects currently being 
conducted and supported (or to be initiated), some of which may be 
outside the scope of the program announcement.
Results or Benefits Expected
    Identify the results and benefits to be derived. For example, ORR 
is particularly interested in the number of businesses established, 
expanded, or stabilized; the employment generated by the businesses; 
the number and size of loans provided to refugees; the amount of 
additional funds leveraged by the ORR funds for microenterprise loans, 
and the impact of the businesses assisted on the refugees' movement 
toward self-sufficiency.
    Outline a plan of action that describes the scope and detail of how 
the proposed work will be accomplished. Account for all functions or 
activities identified in the application. Cite factors that might 
accelerate or decelerate the work and state your reason for taking the 
proposed approach rather than others. Describe any unusual features of 
the project such as design or technological innovations, reductions in 
cost or time, or extraordinary social and community involvement.
    Provide quantitative monthly or quarterly projections of the 
accomplishments to be achieved for each function or activity in such 
terms as the number of people to be served and the number of activities 
accomplished. When accomplishments cannot be quantified by activity or 
function, list them in chronological order to show the schedule of 
accomplishments and their target dates.
    If any data is to be collected, maintained, and/or disseminated, 
clearance may be required from the U.S. Office of Management and Budget 
(OMB). This clearance pertains to any ``collection of information that 
is conducted or sponsored by ACF.''
    List organizations, cooperating entities, consultants, or other key 
individuals who will work on the project along with a short description 
of the nature of their effort or contribution.
Geographic Location
    Describe the precise location of the project and boundaries of the 
area to be served by the proposed project. Maps or other graphic aids 
may be attached.

[[Page 36635]]

Additional Information
    Following are requests for additional information that need to be 
included in the application:
Staff and Position Data
    Provide a biographical sketch for each key person appointed and a 
job description for each vacant key position. A biographical sketch 
will also be required for new key staff as appointed.
Organizational Profiles
    Provide information on the applicant organization(s) and 
cooperating partners such as organizational charts, financial 
statements, audit reports, or statements from CPAs/Licensed Public 
Accountants, Employer Identification Numbers, names of bond carriers, 
contact persons and telephone numbers, child care licenses, and other 
documentation of professional accreditation, information on compliance 
with Federal/State/local government standards, documentation of 
experience in the program area, and other pertinent information. Any 
non-profit organization submitting an application must submit proof of 
its non-profit status in its application at the time of submission.
    The non-profit agency can accomplish this by providing a copy of 
the applicant's listing in the Internal Revenue Service's (IRS) most 
recent list of tax-exempt organizations described in Section 501(c)(3) 
of the IRS code or by providing a copy of the currently valid IRS tax 
exemption certificate or by providing a copy of the articles of 
incorporation bearing the seal of the State in which the corporation or 
association is domiciled.
Third-Party Agreements
    Include written agreements between grantees and subgrantees or 
subcontractors or other cooperating entities. These agreements must 
detail scope of work to be performed, work schedules, remuneration, and 
other terms and conditions that structure or define the relationship.
Letters of Support
    Provide statements from community, public and commercial leaders 
that support the project proposed for funding. All submissions should 
be included in the application OR by application deadline.
Budget and Budget Justification
    Provide line item detail and detailed calculations for each budget 
object class identified on the Budget Information form. Detailed 
calculations must include estimation methods, quantities, unit costs, 
and other similar quantitative detail sufficient for the calculation to 
be duplicated. The detailed budget must also include a breakout by the 
funding sources identified in Block 15 of the SF-424.
    Provide a narrative budget justification that describes how the 
categorical costs are derived. Discuss the necessity, reasonableness, 
and allocability of the proposed costs.
    The following guidelines are for preparing the budget and budget 
justification. Both Federal and non-Federal resources shall be detailed 
and justified in the budget and narrative justification. For purposes 
of preparing the budget and budget justification, ``Federal resources'' 
refers only to the ACF grant for which you are applying. Non-Federal 
resources are all other Federal and non-Federal resources. It is 
suggested that budget amounts and computations be presented in a 
columnar format: first column, object class categories; second column, 
Federal budget; next column(s), non-Federal budget(s), and last column, 
total budget. The budget justification should be a narrative.
    Description: Costs of employee salaries and wages.
    Justification: Identify the project director or principal 
investigator, if known. For each staff person, provide the title, time 
commitment to the project (in months), time commitment to the project 
(as a percentage or full-time equivalent), annual salary, grant salary, 
wage rates, etc. Do not include the costs of consultants or personnel 
costs of delegate agencies or of specific project(s) or businesses to 
be financed by the applicant.
Fringe Benefits
    Description: Costs of employee fringe benefits unless treated as 
part of an approved indirect cost rate.
    Justification: Provide a breakdown of the amounts and percentages 
that comprise fringe benefit costs such as health insurance, FICA, 
retirement insurance, taxes, etc.
    Description: Costs of project-related travel by employees of the 
applicant organization (does not include costs of consultant travel).
    Justification: For each trip, show the total number of traveler(s), 
travel destination, duration of trip, per diem, mileage allowances, if 
privately owned vehicles will be used, and other transportation costs 
and subsistence allowances. Travel costs for key staff to attend ACF-
sponsored workshops should be detailed in the budget.
    Description: ``Equipment'' means an article of nonexpendable, 
tangible personal property having a useful life of more than one year 
and an acquisition cost which equals or exceeds the lesser of (a) the 
capitalization level established by the organization for the financial 
statement purposes, or (b) $5,000. (Note: Acquisition cost means the 
net invoice unit price of an item of equipment, including the cost of 
any modifications, attachments, accessories, or auxiliary apparatus 
necessary to make it usable for the purpose for which it is acquired. 
Ancillary charges, such as taxes, duty, protective in-transit 
insurance, freight, and installation shall be included in or excluded 
from acquisition cost in accordance with the organization's regular 
written accounting practices.)
    Justification: For each type of equipment requested, provide a 
description of the equipment, the cost per unit, the number of units, 
the total cost, and a plan for use on the project, as well as use or 
disposal of the equipment after the project ends. An applicant 
organization that uses its own definition for equipment should provide 
a copy of its policy or section of its policy which includes the 
equipment definition.
    Description: Costs of all tangible personal property other than 
that included under the Equipment category.
    Justification: Specify general categories of supplies and their 
costs. Show computations and provide other information that supports 
the amount requested.
    Description: Costs of all contracts for services and goods except 
for those that belong under other categories such as equipment, 
supplies, construction, etc. Third-party evaluation contracts (if 
applicable) and contracts with secondary recipient organizations, 
including delegate agencies and specific project(s) or businesses to be 
financed by the applicant, should be included under this category.
    Justification: All procurement transactions shall be conducted in a 
manner to provide, to the maximum extent practical, open, and free 
competition. Recipients and subrecipients, other than States that are 
required to use part 92 procedures, must justify any anticipated 

[[Page 36636]]

action that is expected to be awarded without competition and exceed 
the simplified acquisition threshold fixed at 41 U.S.C. 403(11) 
(currently set at $100,000). Recipients might be required to make 
available to ACF pre-award review and procurement documents, such as 
request for proposals or invitations for bids, independent cost 
estimates, etc.

    Note: Whenever the applicant intends to delegate part of the 
project to another agency, the applicant must provide a detailed 
budget and budget narrative for each delegate agency, by agency 
title, along with the required supporting information referred to in 
these instructions.

    Enter the total of all other costs. Such costs, where applicable 
and appropriate, may include but are not limited to insurance, food, 
medical and dental costs (noncontractual), professional services costs, 
space and equipment rentals, printing and publication, computer use, 
training costs, such as tuition and stipends, staff development costs, 
and administrative costs.
    Justification: Provide computations, a narrative description, and a 
justification for each cost under this category.
Indirect Charges
    Description: Total amount of indirect costs. This category should 
be used only when the applicant currently has an indirect cost rate 
approved by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) or 
another cognizant Federal agency.
    Justification: An applicant that will charge indirect costs to the 
grant must enclose a copy of the current rate agreement. If the 
applicant organization is in the process of initially developing or 
renegotiating a rate, it should immediately upon notification that an 
award will be made, develop a tentative indirect cost rate proposal 
based on its most recently completed fiscal year in accordance with the 
principles set forth in the cognizant agency's guidelines for 
establishing indirect cost rates and submit it to the cognizant agency. 
Applicants awaiting approval of their indirect cost proposals may also 
request indirect costs. It should be noted that when an indirect cost 
rate is requested, those costs included in the indirect cost pool 
should not also be charged as direct costs to the grant. Also, if the 
applicant is requesting a rate which is less than what is allowed under 
the program, the authorized representative of the applicant 
organization must submit a signed acknowledgement that the applicant is 
accepting a lower rate than allowed.
Program Income
    Description: The estimated amount of income, if any, expected to be 
generated from this project.
    Justification: Describe the nature, source, and anticipated use of 
program income in the budget or refer to the pages in the application 
that contain this information.
Nonfederal Resources
    Description: Amounts of non-Federal resources that will be used to 
support the project as identified in Block 15 of the SF-424.
    Justification: The firm commitment of these resources must be 
documented and submitted with the application in order to be given 
credit in the review process. A detailed budget must be prepared for 
each funding source.
Total Direct Charges, Total Indirect Charges, Total Project Costs

Part III: The Review Process

Intergovernmental Review

    This program is covered under Executive Order 12372, 
``Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs,'' and 45 CFR part 100, 
``Intergovernmental Review of Department of Health and Human Services 
Programs and Activities.'' Under the Order, States may design their own 
processes for reviewing and commenting on proposed Federal assistance 
under covered programs.
    The following jurisdictions have elected not to participate in the 
Executive Order process. Applicants from these jurisdictions need take 
no action in regard to E.O. 12372: Alabama, Alaska, American Samoa, 
Colorado, Connecticut, Kansas, Hawaii, Idaho, Louisiana, Massachusetts, 
Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, New Jersey, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, 
Palau, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Tennessee, Vermont, Virginia, and 
    Although the jurisdictions listed above no longer participate in 
the process, entities which have met the eligibility criteria of the 
program may still apply for a grant even if a State, Territory, 
Commonwealth, etc., does not have a SPOC. All remaining jurisdictions 
participate in the Executive Order process and have established SPOCs. 
Applicants from participating jurisdictions should contact their SPOCs 
as soon as possible to alert them of the prospective applications and 
receive instructions. Applicants must submit any required material to 
the SPOCs as soon as possible so that the program office can obtain and 
review SPOC comments as part of the award process. The applicant must 
submit all required materials, if any, to the SPOC and indicate the 
date of this submittal (or the date of contact if no submittal is 
required) on the Standard Form 424, item 16a. Under 45 CFR 100.8(a)(2), 
a SPOC has 60 days from the application deadline to comment on proposed 
new or competing continuation awards.
    SPOCs are encouraged to eliminate the submission of routine 
endorsements as official recommendations. Additionally, SPOCs are 
requested to differentiate clearly between mere advisory comments and 
those official State process recommendations, which may trigger the 
``accommodate or explain'' rule.
    When comments are submitted directly to ACF, they should be 
addressed to: Department of Health and Human Services, Administration 
for Children and Families, Office of Grants Management, Attention: 
Daphne Weeden, Grants Officer, 370 L'Enfant Promenade, SW., Fourth 
Floor West, Washington, DC 20447.
    A list of the Single Points of Contact for each State and Territory 
is included with the application materials for this program 

Initial ACF Screening

    Each application submitted under this program announcement will 
undergo a pre-review to determine that (1) the application was mailed 
by the closing date and submitted in accordance with the instructions 
in this announcement and (2) the applicant is eligible for funding.

Competitive Review

    Applications, which pass the initial ACF screening, will be 
evaluated and rated by an independent review panel on the basis of 
specific evaluation criteria. The evaluation criteria were designed to 
assess the quality of a proposed project and to determine the 
likelihood of its success. The evaluation criteria are closely related 
and are considered as a whole in judging the overall quality of an 
application. Points are awarded only to applications that are 
responsive to the evaluation criteria within the context of this 
program announcement.

Review Criteria

    Applications will be reviewed using the following evaluation 
    1.  Objectives and Need for Assistance. Quality of the description 
of the prospective refugee communities' profile with respect to welfare 
utilization, English language proficiency, length of time in the U.S.,

[[Page 36637]]

interest in microbusiness, and the description of local capital needs 
and capital market gaps for refugee microentrepreneurs. (15 points).
    2. Approach. Adequacy and appropriateness of the program approach 
or design, including project goals and structure (policies, procedures, 
activities); training and technical assistance; loan funds, lending 
criteria, and fees, if included in the design; whether the business 
targets are start-ups, expansions, or both; partner agencies; and 
credit enhancements, such as loan loss reserves. (30 points).
    3. Organization Profiles. Demonstrated organizational and 
management capacity including bilingual/bicultural competent services 
and experience serving refugees and other economically disadvantaged 
populations; description of experience in organizational management, 
including copies of the last two fiscal year financial statements, with 
balance sheets and income statements; description of experience in 
management of loan funds, including a projected monthly cash flow chart 
for the loan fund for the three-year period beginning October 1, 2002; 
and experience in collaboration with the specific refugee 
community(ies) and coalition building among refugee and non-refugee 
service providers. (20 points).
    4. Results and Expected Benefits. Extent to which the expected 
outcomes and unit costs of the project are appropriate, consistent with 
reported nationwide performance in microenterprise projects, and 
reasonable in relation to the proposed activities. Results may include 
the impact of loan funds, business income, and business assets on 
clients' welfare status, if applicable, as well as projected outcomes 
for business income, employment, and survivability. (20 points).
    5. Budget and Budget Justification. Appropriateness and 
reasonableness of the proposed budget, including the relative 
distribution of funds for administrative costs, training or technical 
assistance, and loan capital. The application should include project 
timelines and a narrative justification supporting each budget line 
item. (15 points).

Part IV: The Application

    Application Materials: In order to be considered for a grant under 
this program announcement, an application must be submitted on the 
Standard Form 424 and in the manner prescribed by ACF. Application 
materials including forms and instructions are available from the ORR 
website at Application materials 
including forms and instructions are available from the contact named 
under the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section in the preamble of 
this announcement.

Application Submission Information

    1. Mailed applications postmarked after the closing date will be 
classified as late.
    2.  Deadline. Mailed applications shall be considered as meeting an 
announced deadline if they are either received on or before the 
deadline date or sent on or before the deadline date and received by 
ACF in time for the independent review to: U.S. Department of Health 
and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, Office of 
Grants Management, Attention: Daphne Weeden, Grants Officer, 370 
L'Enfant Promenade, SW., Washington, DC 20447. Applicants must ensure 
that a legibly dated U.S. Postal Service postmark or a legibly dated, 
machine-produced postmark of a commercial mail service is affixed to 
the envelope/package containing the application(s). To be acceptable as 
proof of timely mailing, a postmark from a commercial mail service must 
include the logo/emblem of the commercial mail service company and must 
reflect the date the package was received by the commercial mail 
service company from the applicant. Private metered postmarks shall not 
be acceptable as proof of timely mailing. (Applicants are cautioned 
that express/overnight mail services do not always deliver as agreed.) 
Applications handcarried by applicants, by applicant couriers, or by 
other representatives of the applicant shall be considered as meeting 
an announced deadline if they are received on or before the deadline 
date, between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., EST, at the U.S. 
Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children 
and Families, Office of Grants Management, ACF Mailroom, Second Floor 
(near loading dock), Aerospace Center, 901 D Street, SW., Washington, 
DC 20024, between Monday and Friday (excluding Federal holidays). The 
address must appear on the envelope/package containing the application 
with the note ``Attention: Daphne Weeden, Grants Officer.'' ACF cannot 
accommodate transmission of applications by fax or through other 
electronic media. Therefore, applications transmitted to ACF 
electronically will not be accepted regardless of date or time of 
submission and time of receipt.
    3.  Late applications. Applications that do not meet the criteria 
above are considered late applications. ACF shall notify each late 
applicant that its application will not be considered in the current 
    4.  Extension of deadlines. ACF may extend an application deadline 
when circumstances such as acts of God (floods, hurricanes, etc.) 
occur, or when there is widespread disruption of the mail service, or 
in other rare cases. Determinations to extend or waive deadline 
requirements rest with ACF's Chief Grants Management Officer.
    Regulations: Applicable U.S. Department of Health and Human 
Services regulations can be found at 45 CFR part 74 or part 92.
    Reporting: Grantees are required to file the Financial Status 
Report (SF-269) and Program Performance Reports on a semi-annual basis. 
Funds issued under these awards must be accounted for, and reported 
upon, separately from all other grant activities. Although ORR does not 
expect the proposed projects to include evaluation activities, it does 
expect grantees to maintain adequate records to track and report on 
project outcomes. The official receipt point for all reports and 
correspondence is Ms. Daphne Weeden, Grants Officer, Office of Grants 
Management, Administration for Children and Families, 370 L'Enfant 
Promenade, SW., 4th Floor West, Washington, DC 20447, Telephone: (202) 
401-4577. An original and one copy of each report shall be submitted 
within 30 days of the end of each reporting period directly to the 
Grants Officer. The mailing address is: Ms. Daphne Weeden, Grants 
Officer, Office of Grants Management, Administration for Children and 
Families, 370 L'Enfant Promenade SW., 4th Floor West, Washington, DC 
20447. A final Financial Status Report and Program Performance Report 
shall be due 90 days after the budget expiration date or termination of 
grant support.

    Dated: May 9, 2002.
Nguyen Van Hanh,
Director, Office of Refugee Resettlement.
[FR Doc. 02-13035 Filed 5-23-02; 8:45 am]

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