Amendments and Corrections to RFA-ES-08-004 "Children's Environmental Health and Disease Prevention Research Centers: Formative Centers (P20)”

Notice Number: NOT-ES-09-005

Key Dates
Release Date: March 6, 2009

Issued by
National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) (http://www.niehs.nih.gov)
National Center for Environmental Research (NCER) (http://www.epa.gov/ncer)

On January 21, 2009, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued two funding opportunity announcements, RFA-ES-08-002, entitled “Children’s Environmental Health and Disease Prevention Research Centers (P01),” and RFA-ES-08-004, entitled “Children’s Environmental Health and Disease Prevention Research Centers: Formative Centers (P20).”  This Notice is to inform the scientific community that the NIH and the EPA are amending RFA-ES-08-004, “Children’s Environmental Health and Disease Prevention Research Centers: Formative Centers (P20),” as follows:

1.  In Section I. Funding Opportunity Description, under the heading “1. Research Objectives,” under the subheading “Research Scope, Results and Outcomes,” delete the sentence immediately following the third paragraph and replace it with the following:

Delete:

A few examples of activities supported under the P20 funding mechanism:

Replace with:

NIEHS and EPA expect that a variety of possible results and outcomes may result from this joint program, including but not limited to the following:

2.   In Section II. Award Information, under the heading “2. Funds Available,” delete the last bullet point and insert the following:

Delete:

Replace with:

3.  In Section III. Eligibility Information, under the heading “1. Eligible Applicants,” under the subheading “1.A. Eligible Institutions,” under the last bullet point, insert the following:

Insert:

Nonprofit organizations described in Section 501(c)(4) of the Internal Revenue Code that lobby are not eligible to apply.  Profit-making firms are also not eligible to receive grants under this program.

4.  In Section III. Eligibility Information, under the heading “3. Other-Special Eligibility Criteria,” delete the last sentence and replace it with the following:

Delete:

In addition, to be eligible for EPA funding consideration, a project’s focus must consist of activities within the statutory terms of EPA’s financial assistance authorities; specifically, the statute(s) listed in Section VIII. Other Information - Required Federal Citations, “EPA Authorities and Regulations

Replace with:

To be eligible for EPA funding consideration, a project’s focus must consist of activities within the statutory terms of EPA’s financial assistance authorities; specifically, the statute(s) listed in Section VIII. Other Information - Required Federal Citations, “EPA Authority and Regulations.”  Generally, a project must address the causes, effects, extent, prevention, reduction, and elimination of air pollution, water pollution, solid/hazardous waste pollution, toxic substances control, or pesticide control depending on which statute(s) is/are listed in the portion of Section VIII referenced above.  These activities should relate to the gathering or transferring of information or advancing the state of knowledge. 

Proposals should emphasize this “learning” concept, as opposed to “fixing” an environmental problem via a well-established method.  Proposals relating to other topics which are sometimes included within the term “environment” such as recreation, conservation, restoration, protection of wildlife habitats, etc., must describe the relationship of these topics to the statutorily required purpose of pollution prevention and/or control.  Further, applications that fail to demonstrate a public purpose of support or stimulation (e.g., by proposing research which primarily benefits a Federal program or provides a service for a Federal agency) will not be funded.  

5.  In Section IV. Application and Submission Information, at the end of the section entitled “2. Content and Form of Application Submission,” insert the following:

Insert:

Supplemental Information:

Agency policy prevents EPA technical staff and managers from providing individual applicants with information that may create an unfair competitive advantage.  Consequently, EPA employees will not review, comment, advise, and/or provide technical assistance to applicants preparing applications in response to EPA RFAs, nor will they endorse an application or discuss in any manner how the Agency will apply the published evaluation criteria for this competition. 

Multiple Investigator applications may be submitted as: (1) a single Lead Principal Investigator (PI) application with Co-PI(s) or (2) a Multiple PI application (with a single Contact PI).  If you choose to submit a Multiple PI application, you must follow the specific instructions provided in the Implementation Plan for Policy on Multiple Principal Investigators (http://rbm.nih.gov/toolkit.htm).

Information on the status of an application should be checked by the Principal Investigator in the eRA Commons at: https://commons.era.nih.gov/commons/.
6.  In Section IV. Application and Submission Information, under the heading “5. Funding Restrictions,” after the 6th paragraph in the section entitled “EPA Supplemental Information:,” insert the following:

Insert:

Section V of the announcement describes the evaluation criteria and evaluation process that will be used by EPA to make selections under this announcement.  During this evaluation, except for those criteria that relate to the applicant's own qualifications, past performance, and reporting history, the review panel will consider, if appropriate and relevant, the qualifications, expertise, and experience of:

(i) an applicant's named subawardees/subgrantees identified in the proposal/application if the applicant demonstrates in the proposal/application that if it receives an award that the subaward/subgrant will be properly awarded consistent with the applicable regulations in 40 CFR Parts 30 or 31.  For example, applicants must not use subawards/subgrants to obtain commercial services or products from for profit firms or individual consultants. 

(ii) an applicant's named contractor(s), including consultants, identified in the proposal/application if the applicant demonstrates in its proposal/application that the contractor(s) was selected in compliance with the competitive procurement standards in 40 CFR Part 30 or 40 CFR 31.36 as appropriate.  For example, an applicant must demonstrate that it selected the contractor(s) competitively or that a proper non-competitive sole-source award consistent with the regulations will be made to the contractor(s), that efforts were made to provide small and disadvantaged businesses with opportunities to compete, and that some form of cost or price analysis was conducted.   EPA may not accept sole source justifications for contracts for services or products that are otherwise readily available in the commercial marketplace.

EPA will not consider the qualifications, experience, and expertise of named subawardees/subgrantees and/or named contractor(s) during the proposal/application evaluation process unless the applicant complies with these requirements.

7.  In Section IV. Application and Submission Information, under the heading “6. Other Submission Requirements and Information,” below the subheading “Resource Sharing Plan(s),” delete the section entitled “EPA Confidentiality of Submitted Application” and replace it with the following:

Delete:

EPA Confidentiality of Submitted Application

By submitting an application in response to this solicitation, the applicant grants the EPA permission to make limited disclosures of the application to technical reviewers both within and outside the Agencies for the express purpose of assisting the Agencies with evaluating the application.  Information from a pending or unsuccessful application will be kept confidential to the fullest extent allowed under law; information from a successful application may be publicly disclosed to the extent permitted by law.
In accordance with 40 CFR 2.203, applicants may claim all or a portion of the application as confidential business information (for example, hypotheses or methodologies contained in the research narrative that the applicant wishes to protect from possible public disclosure).  EPA will evaluate confidentiality claims in accordance with 40 CFR Part 2.  Applicants must clearly mark applications or portions of applications they claim as confidential.  If no claim of confidentiality is made, EPA is not required to make an inquiry to the applicant as otherwise required by 40 CFR 2.204(c) (2) prior to disclosure.

Replace with:

EPA Confidentiality of Submitted Application

By submitting an application in response to this solicitation, the applicant grants the EPA permission to make limited disclosures of the application to technical reviewers both within and outside the Agency for the express purpose of assisting the Agency with evaluating the application.  Information from a pending or unsuccessful application will be kept confidential to the fullest extent allowed under law; information from a successful application may be publicly disclosed to the extent permitted by law.

In accordance with 40 CFR 2.203, applicants may claim all or a portion of their application/proposal package as confidential business information. EPA will evaluate confidentiality claims in accordance with 40 CFR Part 2. Applicants must clearly mark applications/proposals or portions thereof that they claim as confidential. If no claim of confidentiality is made, EPA is not required to make the inquiry to the applicant otherwise required by 40 CFR 2.204(c)(2) prior to disclosure. However, competitive proposals/applications are considered confidential and protected from disclosure prior to the completion of the competitive selection process.

8.  In Section V. Application Review Information, under the heading “2. Review and Selection Process,” under the subheading “Evaluation of the Overall P20 Center,” delete the first sentence in the final bullet point in this section and replace it with the following:

Delete:

Replace with:

9.  In Section V. Application Review Information, under the heading “2. Review and Selection Process,” the section labeled “Additional Review Criteria” should be labeled “2.A. Additional Review Criteria,” as follows:

Delete:

Additional Review Criteria

Replace with:

2.A. Additional Review Criteria

10.  In Section V. Application Review Information,, under the heading “2. Review and Selection Process,” in the section labeled “Additional Review Criteria” which is now labeled “2.A. Additional Review Criteria,” in the section entitled “EPA Internal Review Criteria for all applications under consideration for EPA support:” in the third paragraph, replace the word “two” with the word “three,” as follows:

Delete:

The specific information required for each agreement is shown below, and must be provided within two weeks of EPA’s request.

Replace with:

The specific information required for each agreement is shown below, and must be provided within three weeks of EPA’s request.

11.  Section V. Application Review Information, under the heading “2. Review and Selection Process,” in the section labeled “Additional Review Criteria” which is now labeled “2.A. Additional Review Criteria,” the section entitled “The EPA internal programmatic review panel will assess:” should include the following:

Insert:

Final funding decisions are made by the Director of the National Center for Environmental Research (NCER) at EPA based on the results of the peer review and internal programmatic review.  In addition, in making the final funding decisions, the NCER Director may also consider program balance and available funds.  Applicants selected for funding will be required to provide additional information listed below under “Award Notices.” The application will then be forwarded to EPA’s Grants and Interagency Agreement Management Division for award in accordance with the EPA’s procedures.

12.  In Section VIII. Other Information - Required Federal Citations, in the section labeled “EPA Authority and Regulations,” the first paragraph should be deleted.

Delete:

To be eligible for EPA funding consideration, a project must address the causes, effects, extent, prevention, reduction, and elimination of air pollution, water pollution, solid/hazardous waste pollution, toxic substances control, or pesticide control depending on which statute(s) is/are listed in the section referenced above.  These activities should relate to the gathering or transferring of information or advancing the state of knowledge.  Proposals should emphasize this “learning” concept, as opposed to “fixing” an environmental problem via a well-established method.  Further, applications that fail to demonstrate a public purpose of support or stimulation (e.g., by proposing research which primarily benefits a Federal program or provides a service for a Federal agency) will not be funded.

Inquiries

Direct inquiries regarding this Notice to:

EPA:

Nigel Fields, MSPH
National Center for Environmental Research
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
1200 Pennsylvania, Ave., NW (8723F)
Washington, DC 20460-0001
Telephone:  (202) 343-9767
FAX:  (202) 233-0677
Email:  fields.nigel@epa.gov

NIEHS:

Kimberly A. Gray, PhD
Division of Extramural Training and Science
National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences
PO Box 12233, K3-12
111 T.W. Alexander Drive
Research Triangle Park, NC, 27709
Telephone: (919) 541-0293
FAX: (919) 316-4606
Email: gray6@nih.gov


Weekly TOC for this Announcement
NIH Funding Opportunities and Notices


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