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  1. #1
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    Default BC79er Regional Projects

    I read your comment regarding a possible change on the applications to indicate the project is a regional project. I have the same concern about the initial computer screening. If the amount of the request exceeds the "formula" used by the computer to determine the competetive range, who will ever see the narrative and know it is a regional project? We have submitted an regional safty & education application which I feel is reasonable, however, I do not think the individual numbers from any one of the partners has a chance.


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    I'm guessing, but there might be a few ways this is handled. At some point the dollar figure requested has to be so far out of whack that it gets flagged, since most regional project cost more so the matching would have to be shared across multiple departments. Something along the lines of the matching being calculated to be higher than the submitting department's budget. So if you put in for $600K to outfit the whole county in PPE, and you're the host with a $25K/year budget, the matching is 5% at $30K so obviously you're asking for more than one department. Another way could be in the requested items themselves, like a communications overhaul asking for 200 portables when the host is a 20 member department. Little clues like that could mark it as regional so they aren't just canned.

    The other way could be that the benefiting more than one department flag sets up a manual review where some of the folks that work there do a quick review of the application narrative to see if it is a regional project or not. All agencies involved in the project are supposed to be listed in the narrative, I'm guessing for that reason.

    Me, I'm a software guy and the goal is supposed to keep things straight-forward when involving the user, so I say having a Yes/No set of buttons like everything else to indicate Regional Project would be better for us and them. That way the Name and DUNS could be entered for all involved departments to make sure that no one is running a duplicate app.

    Whatever way they do it I don't see the computer scoring being an outright determinant. Otherwise nearly every regional project might have been tossed.

    We have submitted an regional safty & education application which I feel is reasonable, however, I do not think the individual numbers from any one of the partners has a chance.
    Hence, the regional project approach. Excellent choice given the circumstances.

  3. #3
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    Thank you. I'm just trying to learn as much as I can. We had an application kicked by the computer in '02, lowered the request by $30K and were funded in '03. Obviously, $3,000.00 local share could not have been a major factor.

    The prevention grant I'm asking about is approx. $70K, seven departments, 10% match. All were listed in the narrative, all currently report to NFIRS and all can afford $1,000 match. If the narrative is or was read.

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    Not a problem.

    We had an application kicked by the computer in '02, lowered the request by $30K and were funded in '03. Obviously, $3,000.00 local share could not have been a major factor.
    No but the funding difference in 2002 vs 2003 was $390 million. The program was only funded at $360 million in 2002, vs $750 million in 2003. Projects that were kicked in 2002 certainly had a better chance in 2003, and projects that had a better chance last year ($750 mil) might not have as good of a chance this year since we're only at $600 million. That's why resubmitting the same app as last year (or other previous years) without making changes would not have been a good move, for those that may have performed such an operation. Not just for those that got computer canned, but even those that made it until the last DJ round.

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    I am concerned about this as well. Small dept with big big grant $ for regional grant.

    Called AFG this morning and BC is on track. The AFG guy guaranteed that would not get kicked by "the computer". Would be screened by a panel. As usually they are closed mouth about how it works but said not to worry.

    My grant was for pumper/tanker for our dept and 4x 5000gal tankers for county regional for ISO water shuttle. $ 997,112 grant portion. Go big or stay home.
    Last edited by neiowa; 04-14-2005 at 12:34 PM.

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    I have been told by several FEMA/HS folks that the regional requests will be looked at by the same peer panel, and also if the computer does kick one out based on large $ request, small numbers, etc. they are going to have someone hand checking them for mention of the word 'regional' in the narrative.

    This could be taken as a plus or minus...depends on how much you trust them. I think the issues with regional will be that this is the first year of 'official' regional apps (although some departments have had them in the past, writing things such as Smoke Trailers, etc. and including info in narrative on the area).

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    Or if they search of apps for the word "regional" should do the trick. I'm actually thinking having the regional will at least ensure a human looks at the app. Somehow getting kicked by a human is more satisfying than by hal.

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    Still think we should push for that to be another question on the application, Is this a Regional Project (multi-department)? And have a box to enter the other departments and their EINS & DUNS numbers. That way easier to cross check the apps for duplicate items. Also easy enough to create a scoring algorithm for those projects as well so that they get weighted properly. Which is what they're doing now, just by hand, it would appear.

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    I'm definately in favor of a Regional app Y/N Box...what's one more question, if it ensures that no one's project is incorrectly thrown out?

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    Not to sound too ignorant, but what would the difference be between a "regional project" box and the current "would this grant benefit more than one department?" box?

  11. #11
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    Well, more than one dept. can benefit usually through mutual aid or automatic aid. However, a regional project would require a financial commitment on the part of every department, as well as personnel, etc. I believe the regional project shows them that there are many discussions, and agreements on the good of a region. Rather than on the assistance to more than one department, could just mean YOUR department thinks it will assist other depts. although, there has been no meetings and discussions (INTER-agency) as to the type of equipment, etc. etc.

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