Fiscal Year 2023 OVC Tribal Set-Aside Formula Program Kickoff Call
The goal of this recorded webinar is to provide OVC FY 2023 OVC Tribal Victim Services Set-Aside Formula Grant Program (TVSSA) grantees with an overview of OVC and the TVSSA program and the support OVC offers to help grantees meet their goals and to serve their communities. View the webinar presentation.
LAUREN SMILEY: Good day, welcome everyone. Thank you for being here with us today. I invite you to use the chat feature, which some of you may have found already at the bottom of your screen to tell us where you are from and say hello to everyone. You've been invited here today because you have all been awarded a Fiscal Year 2023 Tribal Victim Services Set-Aside Grant, and we'd like to officially welcome you to the grantee community. So, let's get started. First, I'm going to be covering a few housekeeping items. This session is being recorded and will be made available on OVC's TVSSA website in about 10 days, and we'll drop a link to that site in the chat for all of you. Throughout our session today, please enter your questions through the Q&A feature at the bottom of your screen instead of using the chat. This will just help us identify and address your questions a little bit more quickly. You can use the chat feature, as I mentioned, to communicate with the host and fellow participants today.
And you'll also be finding resources from our presenters. They'll be dropped in the chat throughout our session here today. Closed captioning is also available. You can enable that by clicking on the CC button on the lower left of your screen today. And then finally, for any technical issues that you may be experiencing throughout the webinar today, please feel free to let us know using the chat box or you can also email our technical support line that's listed here on the screen, but I'll repeat it now. That is [email protected]. So again, please feel free to use that if you're experiencing any technical issues throughout the session today. And now I'd like to turn it over to Jessica Andrew from the OVC Tribal Division to get us started. Jessica, over to you.
JESSICA ANDREW: Thanks, Lauren. And I just want to give a big shout-out to our amazing programmatic TA providers, T-VSTTA. They've been instrumental in making our webinar a success and have been the real heroes behind the scenes. So, thank you all so much for your help. As Lauren mentioned, I, my name is Jessica Andrew and I'm excited to be here and to introduce our team of presenters and to kick off our first session. I'm one of the four grant managers that you're going to be hearing from today.
So a little bit about myself. I've been working with OVC for over 8 years now, and I've had the pleasure of working with the Tribal Division that entire time. My role involves overseeing awards in Alaska, California, as well as a few in the Midwest, so I'm seeing a lot of familiar names coming up on the board and we're glad to have you here. And I'm also, I also oversee our contract for our T-VSTTA program, your programmatic training and technical assistance provider, who you're going to be meeting here in a few minutes. I'm now going to hand it over to Yolanda Curtis Gibson, who is going to introduce herself.
YOLANDA CURTIS GIBSON: Hello everyone, I'm Yolanda Curtis Gibson. I am a grant manager in the Tribal Division, and I've worked at OVC for about 9 years. I primarily manage grants in the Southwestern states of New Mexico, Arizona and Nevada, but I have a few others sprinkled in in other parts of the country. I am also the lead for OVC's Construction Initiatives under TVSSA and I am the program lead for OVC's Developing Future Victim Specialists Program. So, I will now turn it over to Dawn to introduce herself.
DAWN HILL: Hello everyone, I'm Dawn Hill, grant manager. I'm coming up on my 1-year anniversary at OVC and I primarily manage Northern California grants and some in Arizona and some, maybe one or two in other states, but mostly in California. Nice to see everyone virtually.
ALEXIS POLEN: Hello, my name is Alexis Polen. I am also a grant manager with the OVC Tribal Division. I live and work out of Minnesota and most of my grantees are in the middle of the nation, of the lower 48 and I look forward to continue working with you all and meeting our new grantees.
JESSICA ANDREW: Thank you, everyone. Now that you know a little bit about us, what would be helpful is to know who else is in the room. So before we get started with the presentations, we'd like to take a moment to get to know who you are and your role. So on the screen, you're going to see a polling question pop up, so let us know what your role is under the TVSSA award. Are you a victim service director or coordinator, a victim advocate?
Do you work with finances? Are you a grant writer? If none of those categories fit, please select other and you can put that into the chat, and we'll give you a few minutes to respond. Okay, and I'm going to ask Lauren, if you wouldn't mind closing the polling questions. Thank you, okay. The results are in, so it looks like a large portion of you are victim service directors or coordinators, as well as a few grant writers in the room. So, thank you all for joining us today. We hope that this information that we share is going to be valuable for you moving forward. So to kind of kick us off again, welcome to today's webinar and we're excited to have you here. And we appreciate your interest in learning more about how you can best manage your new OVC award under the Tribal Set-Aside Program. Our main objective for this session is to provide you with some in-depth information, knowledge, and resources to help you manage your grants efficiently and effectively.
Managing grants can be a challenging task, especially when you have multiple awards, but our team is here to support you throughout the process, and we're here to equip you with the tools and information that you'll need to succeed. So during this session, we're going to be covering the following essential aspects of managing your OVC grant. So, first we're going to provide an overview of the Office for Victims of Crime and talk a little bit about the Tribal Set-Aside Program with an emphasis on fiscal year '23. We're going to talk about post-award requirements.
So now that you've received your grant, there are several post-award requirements that you must comply with, such as submitting regular progress reports and complying with federal regulations. We're going to give you that information as well as some tips and best practices. And we've included those towards the end of this presentation and sprinkled them throughout as well to help you avoid common mistakes and maximize the impact of your grant. And we understand that all of this can be a little bit overwhelming, that managing grants can be overwhelming, especially for those that are new to the process.
So that's why we've recorded this session and made it available for future playback, and it's going to be available on the OVC website in about 10 business days. So this means even if you miss something or need to revisit a particular topic, you can always access the recording at your convenience. So again, thank you for joining us and we hope you find this information helpful. So to start us off, we are going to share a short, 3-minute video that sheds light on the mission and major responsibilities of the Office for Victims of Crime and enhancing the rights and services of victims across the United States. And so this video is going to describe how funds are financed through fines, penalties, forfeitures, and how it's used to support victim assistance and compensation programs all over the 50 states, in addition to highlighting the Crime Victims Fund. So, this video is going to discuss a little bit of that and our commitment to serving victims throughout the region. And I will pause for Lauren to set up the video.
OVC video plays the What is the Office for Victims of Crime? video.
JESSICA ANDREW: From that video, we hope that you've learned that the Office for Victims of Crime is dedicated to helping victims of crime. Our programs aim to provide direct assistance to victims by offering financial compensation that covers expenses like medical bills, lost wages and funeral costs. In addition, through OVC we offer training and technical assistance to professionals who are working with victims of crime. We also have research and evaluation that helps us to understand the needs of victims to better identify effective strategies to supporting them. And we've also fund demonstration projects and pilot programs to test new ways to help victims of crime. And so we're committed to reaching also underserved communities and ensuring that everyone has access to these services.
So OVC provides grants that improve crime victim services in Tribal communities through a variety of different programs. So these programs can include, of course, the Tribal Victim Service Set-Aside Program, also known as TVSSA, and also the Children's Justice Act. The Children's Justice Act, also known as Purpose Area 6 or CTAS Purpose Area 6, as you may have heard, helps communities improve investigation and prosecution and handling of child abuse, particularly those of child abuse, child sexual abuse in a culturally and trauma-informed way to reduce the trauma for victims of crime. And again, that one's offered through the CTAS solicitation. We also have the Developing Future Victim Specialists in American Indian and Alaska Native Communities. That is the solicitation that Yolanda manages and that focuses on developing victim service professionals that will serve American Indian and Alaska Native victims in locations that are often rural or remote and where positions are often hard to fill. And in 2023, we actually welcomed in 10 new grantees. And we also provide funding to other agencies such as the Bureau of Indian Affairs, BIA, to provide direct victim assistance and to ensure that all victims of crime receive services and referrals that they need, even in remote communities.
We also have an initiative called the Microgrant Initiative, which is funded by or funded to the National Congress of American Indians and also the Denali Commission. They administer those funds in the form of microgrants to federally-recognized Tribes through a competitive selection process. And then also to round us out, we have Training and Technical Assistance. So, OVC offers training and technical assistance to help American Indian, Alaska Native communities manage the financial aspects of your federal award for construction projects, as well as helping you with your programmatic needs to help build your victim service program.
So speaking a little bit more about the Tribal Set-Aside, so this slide is all about the funding history of the Tribal Set-Aside. And let me, as you can see on the screen, we have grant underlined, so I'm only speaking about the actual grant program. The grant program, we started back in 2018 and has continued until this last round in fiscal year '23. So in fiscal year '23, Congress authorized 5% of the Tribal Set-Aside from the CVF, the Crime Victims Fund, which resulted in $95 million being set aside for this program. OVC'S been allocated 85 million for this program and which was then distributed, or I'm sorry, we, through our population certification process, we allocated 85 million to the formula program for those who are interested in applying for fiscal year '23. Unfortunately, some applicants did drop out. So at the end, we ended up awarding 212 awards for nearly $69.7 million.
So in addition to the Formula Grant Program, OVC put the remaining funds from the Tribal Set-Aside to good use by supporting non-formula programs and activities, and these programs are going to be, they were detailed in a previous screen. And it's important to remember that the funding and awards mentioned here on this slide are all part of the Tribal Set-Aside solicitation, which is different than the funding stream. So the intention is just to provide you with kind of our funding history under this program. But if you'd like more detailed information about the Tribal Set-Aside Fund and how funds have been allocated, we have that on our OVC website. So as I mentioned, in 2018, Congress created the Tribal Set-Aside from the Crime Victims Fund, which means that this money was specifically set aside to help victims of crime in Tribal communities.
And since then, Congress has continued to appropriate those funds for the Tribal Set-Aside every year. The OVC fiscal year '23 Tribal Set-Aside program is designed to support a wide range of activities to help victims of crime, such as providing direct services, helping with strategic planning, victim service development and expansion, community outreach and education, procuring tangible items related to victim services, and then other activities tailored to address the unique needs of victims within a variety of different communities, including missing and murdered Indigenous people. So on this next screen we have a detailed breakdown of the 23 TVSSA Grant Program. So, as I mentioned previously, the total number of awards was 212, and these awards were granted to organizations that applied through the two-step application process.
The minimal amount that was awarded based on the formula was $251,000, and then the maximum award under the Tribal Set-Aside was $1 million. And when you do the math, the average award amount was roughly $319,000. The total amount funded was $69.996 million. You can also see that, oh, I did not include that on the screen, but $69.9 million was total allocated for this program, as I mentioned previously, and the performance periods for this grant, which marks the official start date for all grantees that are receiving funding are either going to be October 1 or January 1st, so grantees had the option to choose. So on your award package, you'll either see one of those two dates and the performance periods are based on what you selected in your grant program and can go up to 60 months. So under the Tribal Set-Aside, we offer a maximum of flexibility for Tribes and Tribal-serving organizations to meet the needs of their communities and to provide that funding to be used to support victims of crime.
So, on this screen it provides examples of some of the focus areas that are used to serve victims of crime this year, such as forming a sexual assault program. Some are focusing on creating policies and procedures for domestic violence shelter. A few are focusing on civil legal assistance for victims in need, assisting victims of financial abuse and exploitation, hiring onsite counseling to provide direct services to victims, as well as counseling and support groups and addressing the needs of Elders, among others. And to help to guide the work of the Tribal Set-Aside program, I hope what you see on the screen looks familiar. So we do fund, our funding can be utilized for a broad range of programs, activities, equipment and supplies. And to make it easier for you, we have created this simple list of allowable and unallowable activities under the Tribal Set-Aside. Although this list is not exhaustive, it offers general guidelines on the types of costs and activities that are considered allowable. So we hope as you are implementing your victim service program, you have this handy printed out and can use this to help guide you, especially as you are developing your budgets and how you want to frame your victim service program.
With that chart as well, there is a section that includes unallowable costs. And so these costs it's, well, let me back up. So it's important to understand that while funds can be allocated to, sorry, it's important to understand that funds must be used to support victims of crime and there are statutory limitations on their use. So, Congress established these limitations when it created the set-aside, stating that funds must comply with the Victims of Crime Act requirements and should be allocated to victims, to Indian Tribes to help improve victim services. I apologize, I am stumbling over my words but what you see on these screens are the general costs that are not allowed under the grant program. So, they are activities and services that are not related to victim services or that do not assist victims of crime, costs incurred outside of the project period.
So if your award date is January 1st and you're incurring costs starting in June, that would be unallowable. Activities related to the criminal justice activities, that is unallowable and those would be criminal investigation, prosecution, general costs associated with operating a course or a correctional facility. Food, beverage and meals as it relates to meeting, conferences and training are not allowed but please note that food provided to crime victims as part of direct services or while victims are participating in a cultural and traditional activity are allowed. And then the other ones are fundraising activities as well as legal services for criminal defense. And if your application includes any of these unallowable costs, your grant manager will work with you to make sure those are removed and that you can reallocate your funds for something that is allowable.
So next, under the program we frequently receive inquiries about the necessary deliverables under the Tribal Set-Aside Program. So we understand the importance of project deliverables as they represent tangible or intangible outputs that are submitted with the scope of the project. And so for the Tribal Set-Aside program, we have identified two types of deliverables, which are also outlined in the solicitation. And the first type are going to be those core deliverables. Those include reports and documentation that are required by laws. So this would include the semi-annual progress report, your quarterly financial reports, as well as your performance measures, submitting your budget and getting that cleared. And if you have an indirect cost rate, that would also be considered deliverable because it has to be reviewed by OJP. So, it's critical that you submit those core deliverables to ensure compliance with the rules and regulations that are under this program.
The next set of deliverables are the ones that you included in your application, in your narrative to support the work that you're doing. So some examples of these project deliverables would be a needs assessment or a strategic plan and logic model to help guide the work of your program if you're developing policies and procedures as well as materials such as publications, communications or curricula, or if you're administering a training. And to help you successfully implement your grant activities, we have OVC-designated programmatic and financial TA providers that can offer you training and technical assistance at no cost to help you with these deliverables. And they can provide a variety of different services. They can help you capture the required performance data. They can help you with creating a strategic plan, a number of other items, and we're going to talk a little bit more about some of their services here in the next couple of slides. At the end of your award, you're going to have the opportunity to certify that all of your deliverables that are outlined in your application have been completed. So again, deliverables are something that is reviewed and approved by OVC/OJP. And once you're ready you can engage your grant manager in a conversation, especially if you do have deliverables that are unique to your program.
So in this section, we are excited to talk about the amazing projects that were funded under TVSSA this year. We are going to showcase some of the projects in the next couple of slides that were funded and that might be helpful to you as you're implementing your victim service program. But before I do that, we are going to go into the next slide. So, to kick us off to talk about the different programs that were funded this year, this year we had 23 new entities receive an award under the Tribal Set-Aside program, which is amazing. It's one of our highest number of new entities in a long time, so we're excited to have you here. And these entities are committed to serving victims of crime by either starting a new program or expanding an existing one. And this is one of the first steps, obviously, to serving victims of crime. So, funds in this group of grantees will be used for a variety of innovative ways such as establishing and implementing a new victim service program, conducting a community needs assessment and a strategic plan to help guide the work of their program.
We also have a program that is focused on revising their Tribal codes and organizing a healthy community event, as well as creating a children's victim assistance program and developing a healing through the arts project to provide programmatic support that harnesses therapeutic power of the arts, which includes Alaska Native arts and crafts. And so we're thrilled to be supporting these new entities and their missions to support victims of crime. Grantees are also using their funds to provide a positive impact in their communities by expanding the current services that they have. So, one grantee is implementing a transitional living program to help victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, sex trafficking, stalking, by providing immediate crisis response including emergency access to shelter, food, clothing, transportation assistance, as well as providing emotional and mental health support and legal advocacy to victims. Another program is using TVSSA funding for safety planning for a new victim crime shelter with transitional emergency assistance and short-term housing. In California, one of our programs is using funds to expand services to crime victims in neighboring communities.
So, they're hiring a victim service coordinator and partnering with local counseling services to provide a wide range of therapeutic services for victims. Funds are also being used for recovery coaches that will support the wellbeing of youth who have experienced victimization resulting from substance misuse by assisting family members and caregivers in their recovery. And lastly, I want to highlight we have programs that are developing response, developing response protocols for missing and murdered Indigenous people by creating services and collaborating with a group of agencies and organizations from different jurisdictions and disciplines to ensure coordinated and effective response. But those are just a few of the amazing ways that funds are being used to support and expand services. So this year, we've received an overwhelming number of applications in the State of Alaska, with 67 out of our 210 awardees representing Alaska.
So funding in Alaska, just highlighting a couple of them because there are a lot. So, funding will be used to support a variety of different construction initiatives, including also conducting a needs assessment and developing a strategic plan, enhancing shelter space, provide opportunities for victims of crime to learn traditional cultural practices and heal from trauma. Some programs are organizing healing gatherings and with traditional healers for men, women, and youth. And one grantee is planning to implement a trauma symposium for the Tribal consortium members.
So, we're proud to support these initiatives and other programs that are making a positive difference to those that are in Alaska.
In addition, we also have a few projects that are focusing on training and technical assistance. And these projects aim to create more compassionate and knowledgeable communities by offering professional development opportunities for victim service staff, educational programs that are going to help identify human trafficking red flags, training conferences for professionals who work with victims of domestic violence and sexual assault with a focus of strangulation. Funds are also being used to develop protocols for missing and murdered Indigenous people, which is a critical step forward to creating a safer and more equitable future. And to round this out on our project, I want to talk a little bit about construction. So, this year we had 36 Tribes or Tribal-serving entities who said in their application that they wanted to use funds for construction or renovation projects. So some examples of these projects include purchasing and installing a modular building to house the victim service program. Some are supplementing their previous award, so a fiscal year '22 Tribal Set-Aside construction project, renovating a family advocacy center to accommodate more staff offices and some are constructing an area of tiny homes, modular buildings, to service temporary shelter for male victims of crime.
So this, all these services are again to able victims to access safe shelter and receive services. So if you're interested in learning a little bit more about the projects that were funded not only with OVC but also OJP, we welcome you to learn more about the different projects by checking out the OJP interactive map. And that map provides some more comprehensive information about who's funded in your area and for what. And thank you, Sam, for putting that into the chat. So I was talking a lot. So what I would like to do is just do a quick pause to see if there's any questions about the Office for Victims of Crime, any general questions about the Tribal Set-Aside or any of the programs that we talked about.
LAUREN SMILEY: Jessica, we have two questions that have come in through the chat. The first one is, "With this new allocation we were funded at a lower level than operating costs. Will there be an opportunity in the future to request additional funds beyond allocations?"
JESSICA ANDREW: At this time, there are, the short answer is no. At this time, there are no additional funds that are available for fiscal year '23, but if you are having issues with operational costs, we definitely recommend that you speak to your OVC grant manager to see if there's ways that you can move around some funds in your budget to better meet the needs. And if you have another award, figuring out how to make that work as well. And I'll turn to my colleagues if they have anything to add.
I see another question that just popped up in the chat. How do we connect with our program officer, with our grant manager? That's a great question. Everyone should have received a welcome packet, which included information about the solicitation as well as a plethora of resources, not only about how to contact our help desk but who your assigned grant manager is so we can make sure that you all get that list but in the meantime, for the individual that asked the question and for those that are also asking, you can put that into the Q&A, put the name of your program and we will make sure that you get that contact information today.
LAUREN SMILEY: Thanks, Jessica. Another question that came through the chat and I now see is in the Q&A, would ICWA services be considered allowable?
JESSICA ANDREW: If Yolanda doesn't mind, I would like to turn that question over to her, if she wouldn't mind answering it.
YOLANDA CURTIS GIBSON: Sure. So ICWA, Indian Child Welfare Act services, some of those services, yes, they would be allowable under TVSSA. However, it's important to note that they must be used to serve child victims of crime. There are a variety of reasons why a child might be removed from their home and placed in foster care or with another relative, some of which do not involve being the victim of a crime. If there's no crime victimization that takes place, then these funds would not be able to be used to support those services.
However, if a child is a victim of crime and they are in need of ICWA services, then there is some flexibility to use these funds. I would recommend that you have a conversation with your assigned grant manager so that your grant manager can get more details about what exactly you have in mind and can give you a definitive answer about whether or not what you have planned is allowable under the program.
JESSICA ANDREW: Thanks, Yolanda.
LAUREN SMILEY: Thanks, Yolanda. Another question that came through the chat, Jessica, is, “Is this session getting recorded and will it be available to us to review?” Yes, this session is being recorded and it will be posted to OVC's TVSSA website in about 10 business days and be available for playback. And then we have one more question I see that came through the Q&A, Jessica. It is how do we upload our financial certificate into JustGrants?
JESSICA ANDREW: Danielle, that is a great question and one I don't think that we can answer in this session, but after the call we can provide you with the steps that you need so that you can apply it to not only this award but also apply your financial certification to your other DOJ awards, so we'll make sure to get that to you.
LAUREN SMILEY: Alright, Jessica, I don't see any other questions in the chat or the Q&A at this time.
JESSICA ANDREW: Okay, great. So to make our presentations a little bit more helpful to you, we would like to know about the topics that you're interested most about when it comes to TVSSA because we really want to make sure that we're targeting our sessions to meet your needs. So Lauren has just put a chat, or I'm sorry, a polling question up on the board for everybody. So if you wouldn't mind, could you let us know what type of topics that you'd like to learn more about? Some of the options are how the funds are being distributed under the Tribal Set-Aside Program, providing more examples of different projects, allowable and unallowable costs. And if you have other ideas, we'd love to hear that in the chat.
Okay, Lauren? Great, so it sounds like we have a lot of interest in allowable and unallowable costs and about examples about the different programs that we're funding. So we can definitely take that into consideration and I'm sure our folks at TFMC, who is your financial TA provider, are taking serious notes right now. So next we're going to talk a little bit about your role and also our role here to support you. So it's essential that every grantee receive and reviewed the new grantee welcome packet that was emailed in early October. And if you didn't get it, don't worry, we will send that back out to the list of participants here today. And this packet creates a treasure trove of information that will help you effectively manage and administer your grant program. And it provides detailed instructions about how to access your funds, the grant onboarding toolkit will help you get more confident and capable as you start to implement your project, and we also included some links in there with valuable supplemental information.
So in this section we're going to dive a little bit deeper in the information that was provided in the packets. We're going to be talking about how you can access your funds, review your special conditions, manage and implement your projects, but first we want to talk a little bit more about our roles here, not only your roles, but our roles as we are here to support you. So as grantees, you play a vital role in making our projects a success and we appreciate your contributions and need your help to ensure that these funds are administered effectively. So to ensure a smooth and successful project, you must fulfill certain obligations.
And these include first and foremost accepting the award in JustGrants, reviewing and complying with award conditions that are mentioned in the award document, reaching out to your grant manager in case you have any doubts or concerns, and of course managing and implementing the project and according to the grant terms and conditions. And this means submitting all the required financial, programmatic and performance reports and completing all of your deliverables that are outlined in your application. And so we believe that by fulfilling these responsibilities, you can demonstrate your dedication and commitment to helping not only the project, but helping us achieve our goals and providing direct services to victims of crime.
So to talk a little bit more about the team who is here to support you, you're going to be, we're going to talk a little bit about our grant managers that are with us and the programmatic TA team that is here to support you. So to kick us off on the screen, you're going to see a list of our current grant managers and program specialists that work with the OVC Tribal Division. So our team comprises of social workers, case managers, victim advocates, those have been in the past. The team has extensive experience not only working with the victim service fields, but also grant management. And many of our team members were formal grantees themselves before they joined OVC, so they have firsthand experience and a good understanding of where you are at right now. And then on this next screen we're going to talk about grant manager roles.
So grant managers are responsible for overseeing the entire life cycle of the grant, and their roles are going to include contacting the grantee, so a grant manager's first responsibility is to contact you and to discuss the requirements of the grant. It's an important step to ensuring that you understand what's expected of you and how to plan accordingly, but also knowing who's there to support you as you're implementing your project. And the next important task is connecting the grantee with the TA providers, which we are doing right now, so that you feel supported. We monitor grant compliance, so another important role is monitoring compliance by programmatic administrative and in a fiscal way, so we evaluate those three requirements throughout the life of your award, and this could include by reviewing financial reports, doing a desk review or a site visit. Many ways this can be done.
And then of course we review and approve modifications so if you need help. I just wanted to say in summary, the grant managers do play a critical role to ensuring that you feel supported and they're going to work closely with you, so making sure that you are provided with guidance and support throughout the entire life cycle of the world, not the world, the entire life cycle of the grant. And so their expertise and oversight will hopefully help you with that and to help you achieve your goals and objectives that you've put into your program. So we're now going to transition, and we're going to talk a little bit and hear from our TA support team. So I am pleased to welcome TFMC to present a little bit more about their program and how they're here to support you. So April, I'll turn it over to you to introduce yourself.
APRIL BIRD: All right, thank you, Jessica. . Hello, everyone. My name's April Bird. I'm a member of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians and I have been working with the Tribal Financial Management Center or TFMC for just over 4 years. Prior to that, I worked for our Tribe and for our casino. So I've got a lot of experience on the financial side and so I want to talk to you a little bit about TFMC today. TFMC is committed to providing Tribal grantees with a range of options for receiving individualized TA and training, including virtual, onsite, regional, open office hours and peer-to-peer learning circles, which are customized to meet your needs. And in all technical training and technical assistance delivery methods, TA and training teams commit to the following practices, learning about each Tribal community's unique culture, practices and traditions, developing an understanding of the Tribal victim service program's mission and vision, sharing effective resources, tools and materials, and addressing other financial objectives identified by the Tribal entity and/or OVC.
For virtual and onsite TA requests, pre-session conference calls with grantees are coordinated by the TA team and agenda, delivery format and content are customized and driven by the grantees' specific needs and priorities. And this format option allows TFMC to coordinate single or multi-day sessions with each session covering a different or grantee-identified topic. TFMC offers a wide range of services including needs assessments, individualized technical assistance, support with financial reporting, review of existing financial policies and procedures, and recommendations to enhance existing financial practices to align with OJP grants management requirements.
TFMC provides assistance with budgets, addressing award conditions, submitting grant award modifications in JustGrants and award closeout and reconciliations and so much more. We also provide current, relevant and effective tools and resources for grantees and routinely disseminate information on current best practices and facilitate paying grantees. Now to ensure that all of your needs are met in a timely, seamless manner, TFMC also participates in regularly scheduled meetings with your grant manager and the programmatic TA providers to problem solve, discuss solutions and provide status updates. And we also provide ongoing communication with the grantee and grant manager to assist with creating and implementing a TA plan. We encourage each of you to reach out to the virtual support center, VSC, and visit our website for more information and the link to the virtual support center and our website will be provided in the chat. Thank you all for your time. It was good to see a lot of new participant names and now I'm going to turn it over to Susannah.
SUSANNAH NUMA: Thank you, April and good day. I'm Susannah Numa and I provide contract support to the OVC Tribal Victim Services Training and Technical Assistance Program, also called T-VSTTA for short. Like TFMC, we work with OVC grantees, providing no-cost tailored training and technical assistance focused on supporting your programmatic needs. Centering victims and trauma-informed care. we support grantees as you develop sustainable programs to serve victims and survivors of crime on their healing journey. We have team members across the country to work with you, including folks located on the ground in Alaska, Oklahoma, New Mexico, and a few states on the East Coast.
Our assistance takes many forms, and this might be a quick phone call to answer a question, a series of coaching sessions to work through a challenge together, connections to peers to learn from one another or through in-person or remote training or technical assistance site visits to provide more intensive support. We tailor the ways we deliver our services to your needs and your capacity to engage in technical assistance. We also offer assistance on many topics, right? This might include supporting grantees in navigating aspects of your grants, and such as aligning your program narratives and timelines to meet your goals so that you can address the needs of victims and survivors in your community. It also could be assisting in policy, in the development of policies and procedures that align to your ward conditions or helping you with strategic plans, logic models or establishing data collection processes or reporting.
This might also look like helping you draft, implement or analyze a community needs assessment, develop intake forms or confidentiality policies, strengthen your direct services, so just helping to craft a multidisciplinary community response to MMIP. Or it might be helping to work with you and your colleagues to build program staff knowledge around victim services or helping programs build capacity to serve specific populations or victimization types such as domestic violence or sexual assaults, elder abuse or human trafficking. You'll also receive some information from us, like biweekly news blasts that contain resources and information relevant to the work, to your work, as well as quarterly newsletters that highlight opportunities to engage with us, successful or stories of other peer programs that are using TVSSA funding or other aspects important to the work that you're doing as part of your OVC-funded program.
Your grant manager might connect you to us for support or you could reach out to us directly and we'll throw our information into the chat, but it should also be at the bottom right of our screen where we have a phone number and email address. We work collaboratively, like April mentioned, with OVC and the other TA providers to support you, and we look forward to connecting with you in the coming weeks. With that, I'll pass it over to Yolanda to discuss construction TA.
YOLANDA CURTIS GIBSON: Hello again everyone. So if you will use your TVSSA funds to do a construction or renovation project under your grant, and that does include installing a modular or other prefabricated building, we have two contractors that are available to assist you. The first contractor is the Clark Group, LLC, and the Clark Group assists OVC and OVC grantees with making sure that your construction projects are compliant with the National Environmental Policy Act, or what we call NEPA for short, as well as other related environmental and historic preservation requirements. The most notable type of support that the Clark Group will provide to you as a grantee is assistance in determining the level of environmental review required for your project and, when warranted, developing your project-specific environmental assessment.
They also assist with developing any consultations or public notice requirements that might be needed in your community in compliance with laws such as the Endangered Species Act and the National Historic Preservation Act. While we do have the Clark Group's contact information on this slide, any assistance that you need surrounding NEPA on a construction project should start with a conversation with your grant manager, and that's especially true if you did not propose construction or renovation activities in your application. So after that conversation with your grant manager, your grant manager will advise you about the appropriate process for requesting NEPA-related training and technical assistance.
Next slide, please. The second TTA provider for those of you that are doing construction projects is Blue Trident. Blue Trident is a construction project management company, and they assist OVC and OVC grantees with various types of construction or renovation projects. Their support includes but is not limited to assistance with site planning, construction budget development, construction project timelines, as well as reviewing your proposed construction or renovation plans to ensure that your project is viable and meets both DOJ and construction industry standards. As I mentioned previously on the slide about the Clark Group, the contact information for Blue Trident is also on this slide, but any TTA requests that you have for Blue Trident should start by having a conversation with your assigned OVC grant manager. Later on in the presentation, I will talk a little bit about a special webinar that we have for FY 2023 grantees that proposed construction or renovation activities in their grant application. But in the meantime, I am going to turn it over to Alexis, who is going to shift gears a little bit and present on understanding your award conditions.
ALEXIS POLEN: Hi everybody. I would like to dedicate the next 15 minutes to an explanation of the conditions of your grant award. This will ensure that you have a clear understanding of the terms and any obligations associated with your grant. Before we dive into the details of award conditions, it's important to note that award conditions and language discussed during this webinar are applicable only to the fiscal year 2023 TVSSA solicitation. If you have any project-specific questions or concerns regarding the award conditions, please do not hesitate to reach out to your OVC grant program manager. Before we begin, I'd like to conduct a quick poll to determine your familiarity with the award conditions.
Have you reviewed your award conditions yet? So the options here in the poll are yes, I have reviewed them, no, I have not reviewed them yet, no, I was not sure where to locate the information, and the last one is I'm not sure. Okay, Lauren, let's close the slides and see. It looks like the majority of you have reviewed them. Good for you. Some say that I haven't reviewed them yet, and some are unsure where they're located, and some are just a little bit unsure. And so we'll go through those, some of the major ones together today and help you to familiarize yourself. And of course, there'll be a chance for Q&A at the end. Federal awards come with a set of requirements called award conditions that recipients must follow during the award period. These conditions are managed in the award conditions repository and included in the award packages given to grantees.
When you receive an award, you'll need to review and accept all the award conditions as part of your funded award package. It is important to note that each grant has its own set of special conditions, which play a significant role in ensuring compliance with federal regulations. We want to remind you and everyone involved in the grant, especially the signing authority, the point of contact and the financial point of contact to read and understand these conditions thoroughly. Doing so will help you stay aware of any potential issues that may arise in relation to sub-recipients and other day-to-day activities. We care about your safety and wellbeing, which is why we encourage you to avoid texting while driving, lobbying and other activities that could put you or others at risk. Being mindful of the award conditions, we can work together to ensure a successful and safe grant project period.
Active conditions remain in effect throughout the entirety of the project period, while removable conditions can be removed once they're met or are no longer applicable. Please note that in some instances, removable conditions may withhold funds until they are satisfied. We recommend that you carefully review your award package and check JustGrants to fully understand the special conditions that apply to your grant. Additionally, it's always useful to maintain open communication with your OVC grant manager to clarify any questions or concerns you may have. At the close of the grant period, it will be necessary to certify that all conditions have been met, including any removable special conditions. On this slide, you'll find three topics that we will be covering. The first topic is about the general special conditions. These are the terms and conditions that apply to all OJP awards. These conditions may change every year. In this section, we'll be discussing some of the most important general conditions that were applied to your Tribal Set-Aside Award.
While all conditions are important and require careful review, I will be highlighting the most pressing ones. In case you want to explore the topic further, our attorneys at the Office of Justice Programs have developed a valuable resource to help you better understand and successfully apply your special conditions. You can find the link to this online resource at the bottom of the slide, which includes hyperlinks to various resources. Please click on the link provided to access this resource. Also note that each grantee has more than just these 29 general conditions. These are just the ones that apply to OJP awards, to all OJP awards. The uniform guidance has some provisions that are aimed at making things simpler and more transparent. These provisions help to eliminate any conflicting guidance, increase accountability standards for non-federal entities, promote the efficient use of technology, ensure consistent and transparent treatment of costs, support policy reforms related to allowable costs and strengthen federal award oversight.
If you want to know more about these provisions and are interested in getting some additional resources on Part 200 Uniform Requirements as they relate to OJP awards and subawards, also called subgrants, then please check out the OJP website and the link will be provided in the chat, I am sure. Here is a resource I know that I use all the time as a grants manager. This is the DOJ Grants Financial Guide. The guide is available to everyone and should be your first stock when you have any financial or administrative-related questions. The guide is updated regularly and is only 164 pages long, which is shorter, though, than the Uniform Administrative Requirements. However, it can still be time-consuming to go through. Here's a tip. Use the PDF version and search for specific keywords to find what you need quickly, you know, Ctrl + F.
This guide is a vital resource and I encourage all grantees to use it. Reporting of potentially duplicative federal funding. If any duplication of funding is identified, then you must take the following steps. Number one, contact the assigned grant manager to discuss the overlapping funding. And number two, submit a budget modification or change of project scope, that is, a grant award modification that we often call a GAM as necessary to remove any inappropriate duplication of funding and ensure compliance with the terms of the current award. This process will help ensure that the recipient is using federal funds as efficiently and effectively as possible while avoiding any potential compliance issues. If you are listed as either the grant award administrator or financial management contact in JustGrants, then it is mandatory for you to complete DOJ's Grant Financial Management Training. If you're unsure whether you are listed or not, please log into JustGrants and check it out. It is imperative to complete this training within 120 days after accepting your grant award. On the next slide, we will discuss three options available to fulfill this requirement. If you are listed as the, as we discussed the grant award administrator or financial management contact in JustGrants, then you must complete the DOJ's Grant Financial Management Training.
To fulfill the work condition, you can choose one of the following options. Number one, complete the DOJ Grants Financial Management Online Training independently from your desktop. This course provides a comprehensive understanding of the financial management requirements for DOJ grants. It takes between 16 to 20 hours to complete and covers topics such as financial management systems, budgeting and financial reporting. Number two, attend the 2-day DOJ Financial Management Training Seminar in person. This seminar is offered every month to all grantees, including Tribes, and provides a hands-on learning experience. You'll receive training on topics such as financial planning, financial management systems, and financial reporting. The seminar also includes interactive sessions where you can ask questions and discuss any concerns you may have.
Lastly, participate in the TFMC Tribal Grants Financial Management Training, which consists of 5 consecutive weeks of 1-hour, live virtual sessions with activities in a learning management system. This training is specifically designed for Tribal grantees and will cover topics such as budget development, financial management systems and financial reporting. The sessions are interactive and will allow for you to connect with other Tribal grantees to discuss best practices and share insights. Each of these options has been designed to provide you with the knowledge and skills you need to effectively manage the DOJ grant award.
So with that, we would like to take another poll. We'd like to know your preference here. If you have not completed the Financial Management Training in the last three years, how do you want to take it? So option one is independently complete the online course. The second one is to attend one of the OJP in-person training sessions and the last one is participate in TFMC's five-series virtual course. Okay, it looks like the majority of people would like to attend one of the OJP in-person training sessions. A lot of you would also like independently completing the course online, and there are a robust number of you that also would like to participate in TFMC'S five-series virtual course. It's amazing to see so many of you are interested in the virtual training course sponsored by TFMC. Before we proceed, I'd like to take a moment to ask April from TFMC how folks can learn more about the course and its next offering.
APRIL BIRD: Thank you, Alexis. So we are now determining our exact dates for participation in TFMC'S virtual course. So if anyone would like to participate, if they will reach out to TFMC at OVCTFMC.com and let them know that you were interested, we will add you to the mailing list. So just reach out to our virtual support center and we will be happy to add you.
ALEXIS POLEN: Thank you so much, April. Oh, go ahead.
APRIL BIRD: I was going to say, hi Deanna. I see that you would like to attend the virtual courses and I'll send your name in, but if you will call the VSC or email them with your email address, that way they will have it and we can send you the information, thank you.
ALEXIS POLEN: Thank you, April. You can also contact your grant manager just in case it was hard to catch that email address in passing. All right, very important for everyone involved in a project, including subcontractors, to actively report any incidents related to trafficking in persons. This helps make sure that our work environment is safe, ethical, and respectful for everyone. So if you see or hear anything that seems off, please don't hesitate to speak up. Your prompt reporting can help prevent any further harm and ensure that workers' rights are protected. Award requirements, remedies for non-compliance or for materially false statements.
It's important to be honest and transparent when applying for an award. Any false or fraudulent statement made to the federal government, including concealing or omitting important information may result in criminal prosecution or civil penalties. To avoid any issue, please take the issue, time to read and follow all the award requirements listed in the award package. If you're unsure about anything, don't hesitate to reach out for help. Remember, we want you to succeed and receive the award you deserve. So please make sure you know and follow all the award conditions listed in the award package. Audits. If during an audit, investigation, or review of DOJ awards any outstanding issues arise that need to be addressed, the DOJ awarding agency, OJP or OVW as appropriate, will inform the recipient of the issues and provide them with guidance on how to address them.
The recipient is expected to address these issues satisfactorily and promptly to ensure compliance with DOJ requirements. If the recipient fails to address these issues within a reasonable timeframe or fails to address them satisfactorily, the DOJ awarding agency may withhold award funds or impose other requirements to ensure compliance. However, the DOJ awarding agency recognizes that sometimes issues may arise due to circumstances beyond the recipient's control. In such cases, the recipient is encouraged to notify the DOJ-awarding agency promptly and work with them to resolve the issue in a timely and satisfactory manner.
Okay, so there you go, thank you. It's important to ensure that you comply with all the requirements related to the System for Award Management, otherwise known as SAM, which you can access at www.sam.gov\sam\. This includes registering with SAM and keeping all of your information up to date. It's very important. If you'd like more information on your obligations related to SAM and unique entity identifiers, you can check out the OJP website and the link will be added to the chat. Civil rights and nondiscrimination compliance. Everyone must follow rules from the DOJ about treating people fairly. The rules are in three parts. If you work somewhere, anywhere, you must also follow these rules to give everyone an equal chance. Number one, one of the rules, 28 C.F.R. part 54 says that people should not be treated differently because of their gender in some school programs.
Number two, another rule, 28 C.F.R. part 38 says that people cannot be treated differently because of their religion or if they choose not to have a religion. It also says that some groups that are religious must follow these rules too. You can read the rules on the internet. Remember, everyone should be treated the same and have the same opportunities. And this is required of both recipients and sub-recipients. Number three, compliance with subpart E of 28 C.F.R. part 42 is also necessary, which pertains to equal employment opportunity programs. Grant reporting responsibilities. Some of you are already very familiar with these. They were lightly covered earlier in the presentation. Reporting for your grant work starts when your award period begins regardless of whether you've accepted the award, cleared your budget or hired staff.
You might be wondering what is meant by reporting requirements. Reporting is essentially a way for you to update us on the progress of your grant work. This includes providing us with information on milestones achieved, challenges encountered, and how the grant funds are being utilized. It's important to note that failure to meet your reporting requirements could result in a delay of your grant payments or even termination of the grant. Therefore, we urge you to take reporting seriously and make it a priority. We'll be providing more detailed information on reporting later in the presentation, but for now, please ensure you're aware of your reporting requirements and the importance of meeting them.
Determination of suitability to interact with participating minors. This condition applies to TVSSA awards and any sub-award that include activities to be carried out under the award that aim to benefit minors under the age of 18. Prior to interacting with participating minors, the recipient and any sub-recipient must determine the suitability of certain individuals. This requirement applies to all individuals regardless of employment status to ensure the safety and wellbeing of all minors. High risk designation. If you have been designated as high risk by a federal agency other than the Department of Justice, and you are also a recipient of a federal grant, don't worry. We're here to help you comply with federal regulations.
To do this, you need to inform the Office of Justice Programs of this designation via email at [email protected]. I'm sure we will send that out or add it to the chat. Here are several reasons for a high risk designation such as past performance or financial management issues. When you send an email to OJP, please make sure to include the following information, the federal agency that designated you as high risk, the date of the designation, the name and phone number and email address of the high risk point of contact at the federal agency, and the reasons for your high risk status as identified by the awarding agency.
Again, if you have questions about what needs to be done here, please do contact your grant manager as they could also assist you. At OJP, we value transparency and the reporting of any waste, fraud or abuse. We want you to know that no employee or contractor at any level is required to sign an internal confidentiality agreement or statement that could prohibit or restrict the reporting of any such incidents to an investigative or law enforcement representative of a federal department or agency authorized to receive such information.
If you come across any potential fraud, waste, abuse or misconduct involving or relating to DOJ funds under the award, we encourage you to report it immediately to the Office of the Inspector General by calling the DOJ OIG hotline at 800-869-4499. You can also find more information on the DOJ OIG website. I understand that we have just shared a lot of information with you, and I appreciate you taking the time to listen. This knowledge will be invaluable and help you make informed decisions when it comes to handling federal funding and managing your award. At this point, I would like to pass it on to my colleague, Yolanda Curtis Gibson, who will be covering the next section.
YOLANDA CURTIS GIBSON: Okay, so Alexis just covered general award conditions that apply to all OJP awards. And so I am going to present on award conditions that are programmatic in nature. We can go to the next slide. So, programmatic award conditions are specific requirements that are associated with each award and remain in effect throughout the life of the award.
These conditions are similar to the general conditions that Alexis just covered, but they are tailored to meet the specific needs of the award and the associated solicitation or program. Programmatic award conditions may include specific reporting requirements, milestones that must be achieved, or other performance metrics that must be met to ensure successful completion of the award. By providing these detailed requirements, programmatic award conditions help to ensure that you as the grant recipient are fully aware of all expectations and that you can work towards achieving them throughout the life of the award.
So the first programmatic special condition that I'll cover is related to access rights. This special condition requires you as a grant recipient to allow OVC access to documents that are related to your grant upon request. So this includes but is not limited to financial records, perhaps data that you've used to complete your programmatic progress reports, your organization's internal policies and procedures related to grant management, et cetera. Those are just a few examples, but the documents that we can request really vary beyond that.
By accepting your TVSSA award, you as the grant recipient have agreed to fully cooperate with OVC and to provide any additional information or documentation that may be requested. These documents are most often requested during a monitoring site visit, whether in person or virtual, but they can also be requested outside of those site visits, so just keep that in mind. The next special condition that I will cover relates to when a grantee fails to initiate activity. I know that won't be the case for all of you on this call, but I have to mention this anyway and I'll do so briefly. So basically with this special condition, OVC reserves the right to take appropriate action in instances where a grantee fails to initiate grant activity or where a grantee misses multiple time task deadlines. And I should mention that the flexibility is the name of the game with TVSSA.
If you are encountering any challenges, the key is to communicate with your grant manager so that you all can work on a plan for mitigating those challenges. Perhaps that may involve revising your timeline or doing a scope change. So there, changes are allowed and flexibility is definitely, we definitely encourage that. But the key is to communicate with your grant manager. If you fail to initiate activity, OVC action may include but is not limited to termination or suspension of the grant. So the next special condition I'll cover is related to confidentiality policies and procedures. Your organization must have written policies and procedures that clearly state how you will maintain the confidentiality of victims' names, addresses, telephone numbers and other personally identifiable information. You must also have documented procedures for information sharing among partners.
So to satisfy this condition, you will need to submit a signed, written certification to your grant manager certifying that you have written policies and procedures in place and that your data privacy and sharing protocols are in line with the confidentiality and privacy rights and obligations that apply to your jurisdiction. Next slide. So the next special condition that I will cover is related to consultant rates. Those are rates paid to individual consultants under your grant. It's important that the rate you pay your consultants is reasonable and generally consistent with the market rate for similar services. Please note that the maximum consultant rate for OJP is $650 per day or $81.25 per hour. If you want to pay a consultant more than that, you'll need to get prior written approval from OVC. Prior approval across, excuse me, private, prior approval requests require additional justification and documentation.
So I mentioned that the maximum rate, or maybe I didn't, but the max rate is based on an 8-hour workday. An 8-hour workday can include preparation and travel time in addition to the time for actual performance. However, it's important to remember that the maximum rate cannot and should not be the rate paid for all consultants. The rate should be consistent with current market value for the service provided, and I mentioned that before until, so to support that your consultant rate agreement file should contain a documented market analysis and justification for the agreed upon rate. If there's no supporting documentation, sometimes consultant expenditures may be questioned during an audit or a monitoring review.
So to determine the current market rate or value for service you are looking to procure, you can check out competitive bid contracts or the Bureau of Labor Statistics wage data by area and occupation website and the DOJ Financial Guide also has some additional information available on this topic. So in order to ensure transparency and accountability in the management of grants, there are certain costs that require prior written approval. That's per the 2 C.F.R., the section noted on your screen, I'm not going to read that verbatim, as well as the DOJ Grants Financial Guide. For some examples of those costs, and if you want to do a deeper dive, I encourage you to take a look at the Financial Guide. But as I mentioned, it can include compensation for consultant services that exceed the OJP maximum, any sole source procurements that exceed $250,000, publication plans, so this includes any costs that are associated with publishing research, reports or other documents related to the grant, purchase of automatic data processing equipment and software or pre-award costs.
If you want to pay for any of those things, any of your plans fit those bullets on the screen, please have a conversation with your grant manager about the process associated with prior approvals. So the next programmatic condition I'm going to cover is NEPA. We talked about that a little earlier in the presentation. All construction and renovation projects are required to comply with NEPA. NEPA requires federal agencies to consider the effects that a proposed action, which includes awarding grants, may have on the environment and any related social and economic effects. And OVC has hired a contractor to work with you to ensure that your project complies with NEPA. We talked about that. That contractor is the Clark Group.
Next slide, please. So there are, in addition to the NEPA special condition, there are four special conditions that are unique to construction and renovation projects. Those four special conditions are related to project feasibility, project insurance, real property reporting and project cost overruns. Additional information on these special conditions and what you must do to ensure compliance will be provided at the upcoming Construction Project Webinar. So the Construction Project Webinar will be held on Tuesday, November 28th.
This webinar is for fiscal year 2023 grantees who propose construction or renovation activities in their applications. This webinar will provide an overview of the information you need to get started with your construction project, including information on the process and timeline for environmental reviews under NEPA, an overview of the NEPA and construction special conditions and what you must do to ensure compliance, and it will give you an opportunity to meet your service providers, your OVC NEPA and construction TTA providers.
Grantees who proposed construction in their application will be sent a link to register for this webinar. Those grantees will also receive a welcome letter from either the Clark Group, again, that's the NEPA contractor, or Blue Trident who's the construction TTA provider. And that will be provided, well anyway, please be on the lookout for that information. The contractors will do outreach and will send that information to the points of contact that you noted in your Construction Renovation Efforts Questionnaire that you submitted with your application. If you did, if you proposed construction in your application but you didn't complete that questionnaire or you think that a point of contact that was initially listed shouldn't be there anymore, perhaps they've left your organization, please notify your grant manager as soon as possible so that we can get that information updated. And so now I am going to just take a quick pause to see if we have any questions.
LAUREN SMILEY: Yolanda, the one question I did see come through the chat is around the roles that are required to take the financial management training, which you did answer in the chat. I just want to repeat it so everyone can hear it as well. The financial management training is required for the grant award administrator and the financial manager that are listed in JustGrants. We have a question in the Q&A. Do previous OVC grants, such as 2022, require NEPA regulations for renovations?
YOLANDA CURTIS GIBSON: Yes, they do. So those projects that proposed to do construction or renovation with their FY 2022 award, they should have the NEPA special condition on them. The difference between FY 2022 and FY 2023 is that for FY 2023, we proactively added those special conditions to all grant awards. Now if you did not propose construction in your FY 2022 application, you should have a conversation with your grant manager about whether or not that can be added. In some cases it might be able to, but there are a number of requirements and considerations to take into account, so that will require a one-on-one conversation with your grant manager.
LAUREN SMILEY: Thanks, Yolanda. We're running a little tight on time here today, if you continue to have questions, feel free to put those in the Q&A and we'll make sure that we do the best we can to get those answered and posted to the Q&A so everyone can see them as well. But I'm going to move us to the next slide.
JESSICA ANDREW: Thanks, Lauren, for keeping us on time so we can get everybody out in 30 minutes. So next we're going to be talking about withholding conditions. And the big question is how are they different from the other two categories that Alexis and Yolanda covered? So Lauren, if you don't mind going to the next slide. Essentially, if you don't comply with withholding conditions, you won't be able to draw down on your funds or draw down your funds.
So it's important to note that withholding conditions can be added during the application phase at any time, especially when there's missing information. So by quickly addressing these conditions, you're going to be able to avoid unnecessary delays when receiving your funds and implementing your projects. So apart from reviewing the award condition list, there are a few ways to check if you have a hold on this condition.
So on this next slide, your grant award administrator or your financial manager as well as your authorized rep can access JustGrants to see the status of your award. So on the screen here, you're going to see the funding balance and availability tab that we have highlighted, just to give you an idea of what you should be looking for. So as you can see, the award has multiple issues including suspension and a hold on funds. Suspensions are automatic holds that originate from JustGrants and are beyond our control as grant managers. And these suspensions may be due to a delinquent progress report or a financial report, or in this case, an expired SAM registration. To locate any withholding conditions that you have on your award, you'll need to scroll down and see that hold section that's highlighted. And then these lists are going to display active holds that have not been resolved.
So, what you can do is select each one to review each hold and examine the information. And remember, you must resolve all of them in order to gain access to the funds. So just taking care of one of them isn't going to release the funds in itself. So as you can see for this award, they have four active withholding conditions that need to be removed before they can access the information. And again, for these you really do want to contact your OVC grant manager. The most common financial hold that you're going to see is going to be related to the conditional clearance, what you can see on this next slide. I'll pause, there we go. So this hold applies when OCFO, our financial officer, is still reviewing your budget. And while this hold is in place, you can only use up to 10% of your funds, which means by obligating and extending and drawing them down.
So, you only have access to 10% as long as you don't have other withholding conditions. So before OCFO clears your budget, they may request revisions or clarifications on some of the things outlined in your budget. So to avoid delays, it's highly recommended that you address all the issues identified by OCFO to get your budget cleared. And we're going to talk a little bit more about budgets here in the next one, but that's going to be the most common withholding condition you all are going to see on your award. The second common one is going to be for indirect costs.
So, if you put IDC, indirect costs, in your budget, in order to comply with this special condition we kindly ask that you follow three simple steps. Email a copy of your new Indirect Cost Agreement to your assigned grant manager. You can attach it to JustGrants under attachment section or you can also, we'll provide steps on how you can attach it to JustGrants so it shows up on all of your awards. Just note that if there is a change in your Indirect Cost Agreement, so in your budget you originally said it was going to be for 25% and now it's changed to 18 or 29, any change will require a budget modification GAM that must be submitted in JustGrants.
If you do have, again, if you have this withholding condition on your award, talk to your grant manager, make sure you get your new Indirect Cost Agreement submitted so that you can get this hold removed. The next withholding condition that you may see on your award is if you have a single audit that has not been submitted to, into the system. So, if you received a grant and spent over 750K in federal funds in the past year, you must submit your information to the Federal Audit Clearing House, which requires you to submit a form, the SF-SAC, or also known as the Single Audit Report package online. Don't worry, it's an easy process. If you have any questions about how to submit your single audit form into the Federal Audit Clearing House, please let us know.
TFMC is also very well versed on this and can help you with that. And on this next slide we have the other special conditions that you may encounter on your award package. Some of it might be the disclosure for pending applications. So maybe you did not submit this with your application. If you're a new grantee, you may have a hold for your Financial Management Training, which means your grant award administrator and your financial manager must take that training. Both certificates must be provided to OCFO, I'm sorry, to OVC in order to remove that hold. Other holds that maybe will be on their approach program strategy and budget, which means you may have to revise your program narrative as well as if you have an expired SAM claim number like you saw on that first slide, that screenshot.
If you have an expired SAM, you need to contact your grant manager so you can get that taken care of. So, before I tell you how we can remove these special conditions, I just want to do a quick pause to see if there are any questions in the chat. I see a question. Can you please confirm that as the holding conditions are met, they'll be updated in the funding balance and availability section in JustGrants? Yes, Allison, they will be updated.
So you will see that those, as you start to take care of them, they should be removed. You can continue to put in your questions into the chat and towards the end of the presentation, if there's time, we'll make sure to answer those. If not, we can handle them on the back end. So how to satisfy the withholding conditions. If you have one of these conditions that needs to be addressed, don't worry, we're all here to help. And here's what you need to do. So first you need to take action. So first and foremost, have a conversation with your grant manager to see what is required. Most of the time it's something that can be simply emailed to your OVC grant manager such as the Financial Management Training certifications or an updated program narrative.
Once that is submitted and reviewed by OVC, your OVC grant manager will remove the hold. This is something that you cannot initiate. It is something only the grant manager can do. And then lastly, once the hold has been removed, it can, which can take a little bit of time because there is a review process and that has to happen, you're going to get a notification from JustGrants letting you know that the funds for that condition have been released. But again, you want to continue to check in with your grant manager because you may have other conditions that are on your award that must be addressed before you can fully access your funds. And that's why it's really great to go and check back at that funding and availability tab because that's where you're going to see whether or not you have access to your funds.
So we're going to change the topic a bit and take a break from discussing award conditions and instead we're going to talk about accessing your funds. So, which is critical to your project success and without much delay, what the one thing that I will mention is if you see on the screen, so out of the 212 grantees that we have, half have completed and half have not. So, you want to make sure that you get that done within 45 days of receiving your award notification. So many of you received your award notification on or about September 19th, so you are coming up on the time where you need to accept your award. So some of the steps to follow when you log in to JustGrants, you're going to review in your work list to see if there's any awards that require action. Here, what we're going to do is we're going to go to the next slide.
So, I'll back it up for a second. So, email notification is going to get sent to the application submitter, the authorized representative and the entity administrator to sign and accept the award. That's a system-generated award notification that is sent out. So prior to accepting the award, your entity administrator must assign the authorized representative, the financial manager, and the grant award administrator all three roles before the authorized rep can go into the system to review the special conditions, review the award and certify the information. And as a reminder, accepting or declining these awards has to be done in JustGrants. We cannot accept paper copies. While I would love to provide more detailed information on this, I do recognize we are tight on time.
So, what we are going to do at the end of this presentation, we're going to give you information on how to join one of the JustGrants virtual training opportunities that walks you step by step on how to accept your award. And also if you need help with role reassignment, they're going to have a specialist on that call to be able to help you, so we'll provide you with the, that registration here on the backend. The last thing I want to mention before I turn it over to Tina is to talk about the budget approval process. As I mentioned previously, many of you still have conditional budgets right now and are waiting to get your budget approved. So as of right now, our OCFO, they have all of OJP Awards to get through and have to review each and every one of those budgets.
So that's over 3,000 for over about 10 specialists. So it's going to take a little bit of time for them to get through them, but when you are contacted, you will want to make immediate action. So if they're asking you to make minor revisions to include travel or to break down costs, you want to address those as quickly as possible. If you need help with your budget revision, please contact your TA specialist at TFMC. They can walk you through on some of the changes, help you identify maybe new costs that you should add or things to modify and they can work with you one-on-one.
Time and time again, I've seen them, like, they do a screen share, and they can really help you walk through that process. And once your budget is approved, your OVC grant manager will release the hold of funds. Again, they're the only ones that can do that. So again, communication is key here with your grant manager and if you need help, please contact TFMC. And one thing that I failed to mention is OCFO is going through the list of budgets throughout all OJP.
They're going to start with those awards starting with October. If you have a January 1 start date, it may be a couple of weeks or even a month or two before they get to you. So please be patient as we work through that long list of grants that needs to get approved. So recognizing that we have about 20 minutes left, I'm going to pass it over to Tina to talk a little bit more about reporting.
TINA DIMACHKIEH: Thank you, thank you so much, Jessica. Hi everyone, I'm Tina Dimachkieh. I'm a training and technical assistance specialist. I provide contractor support as part of the performance management team to OVC grantees like yourselves across OVC programs around performance management of their OVC awards and performance reporting and the reporting requirements that you heard about today, more from a performance measures standpoint. I will be providing a very brief summary about performance reporting to you all today, but we do have resources that we will make available to you as your reporting process starts. We also do have upcoming trainings that will be scheduled in January for you all for your first reporting period, so more information to come. This is very brief, and I know I am speaking fast, but for the sake of time I wanted to be able to get through our slides here today. First, I want to let you know about our reporting platform.
So, you've heard about JustGrants. JustGrants is part of the reporting requirements where you complete your reporting requirements. It's the grant management system that provides our grantees with an end-to-end experience, not only for reporting. However, there's another platform, that's the PMT. You may have heard this term as you completed your applications. The PMT is the Performance Measurement Tool and this tool is specifically a web-based reporting system where you will go in and electronically submit qualitative and quantitative data as it relates to your grant activity and your OVC funding that you've used over a certain period of time. The PMT is specifically for performance reporting and that's the sole purpose of that platform. And then you also have a second piece of reporting that happens in JustGrants as well. You will be getting access to all of this information and access to the system in January as well.
So, the types of reports that you are required to complete as an OVC recipient of funding, as you've heard earlier, there's quarterly performance measure reporting. There's semi-annual progress reports and there's also at the end of the award period, which is down the road for you all, a final report in the closeout process of your award. The quarterly performance measure report will be completed every three months. It speaks to data, the data that you've collected over each quarter of grant activity. So every three months you will collect data and enter data into the PMP system. This data will speak to subrecipient work and prime work if you have any subrecipients on your award and you will take that information and enter it into the system.
The quarterly reports are considered quantitative reports. I always get those two confused, quantitative reports where you're only entering numbers into the system for that quarter and submitting a report to satisfy the reporting requirements for that specific quarter. The semi-annual report, in addition to having your quarterly data that is due, you also will have to complete a set of narrative questions. There are eight narrative questions that relate to grantee and sub-grantee activity over a semi-annual reporting period. The semi-annual reporting period is 6 months of grant activity. It's semi-annual, so twice a year. This is again a separate set of questions and you also for a semi-annual report will be required to enter that information into JustGrants. You will take information from one system, which is the PMT system, and you'll be required to complete progress reports in JustGrants for that semi-annual period.
We have resources and you'll also have webinars and office hours to help you complete that two-step process. So do not worry, we have all the resources for you. It might seem a little bit overwhelming right now, but we're also here to support you through both processes for quarterly and semi-annual reporting. The final report, that report again is far away for you all for now. It is at the closeout of your award once you've reached the end date of your award. It's a requirement to complete reporting over the life of the award to speak to grant activity that took place over the entirety of the award, speak to goals and objectives that were completed during the report cycle and you will be submitting an aggregated quantitative and qualitative data report that is completed in the PMT and then also migrated over to the JustGrants platform. I do want to let you know that even if you do not have grant activity which is your current quarter, your first quarter of activity may not include any grant activity, now that your awards are operational and you've started your start date for your awards, you will be required to complete reporting even if you don't have any data to report on.
And that first reporting period will be in January. Here is the reporting schedule, so we follow the federal fiscal year, which starts on October 1st and ends on September 30. The first quarter is October through December with a requirement to complete quarterly and semi-annual reporting by January 30. You usually will have, or unless there's any sort of an extension, you will have 30 days to report at the close of a quarter. So you see the end date of the quarter being December 31st. You have until January 30th to complete data entry and submit your performance and progress reports for that specific period. And then , you see on the screen here, second quarter is January to March, third quarter is April through June and then that last quarter for that year is July to September.
So there are four quarters following the federal fiscal year. You'll also see on the right-hand column, it directs you if you're supposed to upload the JustGrants or not. So, your two semi-annual periods are by January 30 and July 30. That happens twice a year and that's that semi-annual report that I had mentioned in the prior slide. We host office hours around reporting periods for every quarter, so if you ever needed any assistance as you complete, you were completing a report or needed guidance on what is due and when, you will just join those office hours and we can support you in that way. The last report, again very far into the future, but that last reporting period, that final report is typically due within 120 days of that end date of that award.
So, you've got four months to complete that final report. Okay, so for the performance measurement tool, the PMT, your initial access will be granted to you in January. In the first week of January, we will provide access to all FY 23 new grantees that do not already have access to the system for their new awards. The website is ojpsso.ojp.gov. You do not need to write this down or remember it. We will be sending out resources when you do get access with the link and information on how to log in. The initial point of contact or the initial access will be granted to the individual from your organization that is listed as the grant award administrator in JustGrants. That's the only individual initially that will receive access to the PMT. So if you know that somebody in your organization other than that grant award administrator is going to be responsible for completing data entry on behalf of your organization for your OVC award, please be sure to get with them and make sure that they have access to the system after that initial access is granted by us. You can have as many accounts created in the PMT after the initial access is created.
So, anybody in your organization that needs access, that should have access, can then receive an account from your organization to access the system and have access to the data or enter the data on behalf of your organization. In January, that initial point of contact will receive an auto-generated email from the OVC PMT help desk with first-time login instructions, so you will be receiving all of this information. If you already know of the PMT and you have other OVC awards that you've used PMT for the new award will be listed in its own tab, its own category for you. Okay, so just a little bit of resources to get you started as you gear up for your first reporting period in January. We have an entire webpage dedicated to your program to the transforming victim service grantees and the Tribal grantees performance measures webpage on the OVC website where you have a list of all the performance measures, user guides on how to use the system, how to understand the measures and the different questions and what they're asking.
We also have recorded webinars that you can review before the January reporting period and different topics that we have resources for in addition to data collection tools as well that you can use. If you know that your organization does not have a data collection mechanism in place and you'd like to get one started, you can visit that webpage and look at one of our tools. We also have a dictionary and terminology resource that's available for our grantees that will help you understand the terms that OVC uses within the performance measures. We understand that across the country terms are different, especially at the local level from what we use at the federal level, and so this resource will be very helpful as you start working on understanding the performance measures and reviewing what exactly you will be collecting when you begin grant activity.
And I also want to let you know that our team is available, we are here to support you and we host these office hours that I had mentioned every reporting period. But we also do host one-on-one coaching sessions for our grantees. If you are interested in having a session for any new staff members or your entire team, we're more than happy to schedule one for you. You need to contact us through the help desk to get a session scheduled. We schedule these TA sessions to answer your questions, to support you, to help you navigate the platform and really just anything that you have questions about as it relates to performance reporting for your OVC awards.
Please feel free to reach out to us. We have a help desk dedicated to you all that can respond to you, to your tickets that you would've created. Here's the information about the help desk. We have our phone number, you can give us a call, but we also have an email address that you can reach out to. I also wanted to include the JustGrants help desk because they are there to support you as well as it relates to JustGrants activity and information that you need for that system as well. We are two separate platforms and two separate teams.
So, information for around PMT and the performance measures would come to us, the PMT Tier 4 help desk, and information about the JustGrants platform, roles, password resets and navigation of the system, that would go directly to the JustGrants team. And I know that was super quick, but I think we got through all of our slides, and I look forward to working with you all in the future. Back to you, Jessica, I think, or Dawn.
DAWN HILL: Hi everyone. We are in the home stretch. I'm going to go through the rest of the slides to provide you with some necessary tools and resources. A lot has already been covered so it should not take me long for the sake of time. Next slide. And Yolanda already went over the Construction Project Webinar that's going to take place on Tuesday, November 28th from 1:00 to 3:00. And JustGrants, if you need any type of assistance, JustGrants provides real-time technical assistance, so if you click on this link and it probably is in the chat also, you can register and focus on entity management, post-award management or award acceptance.
I know some of you haven't accepted yet, so if you need some assistance you can go to these weekly sessions that will help you out. Next slide. All right, I know that Tina just went over performance measurements, so we have a webinar coming up on Tuesday, January 16th, 2024, and it's going to address how to report, what you should report and what resources are available. Again Tuesday, January 16th from 2:00 to 3:00.
Next slide. And OVC will host a virtual Tribal consultation on the Tribal Set-Aside from the Crime Victims Fund for fiscal year 2024. That will be held Wednesday, January 17th and Thursday, January 18th as you see on the screen from 1:00 to 3:30. More information will be available via this particular website you see on the screen, and it will be in the chat for more information to come. Next slide. And Indian Nations, get ready. That is scheduled for December 2024. So a little over a year from now and of course we will give you more information as it is provided. Alright, next slide. And some of my colleagues had already gone over some of these resources, the Financial Guide, our Tribal Division webpage. If you Google Tribal, let's see, "OVC Tribal Program," if you put that in your Google search, this particular webpage will come up.
SAM, I know Alexis went over the sam.gov and the importance of that, JustGrants, you go on that website, you'll get all the resources that you need. And then Financial Management, the website is also there and also has been put in the chat earlier. Next slide. In additional resources, if you visit this particular website, it's for dedicated Tribal website for updated information. It entails webinars and current funding opportunities, fact sheets, publications. Please visit this often. It provides you all the information you need.
All right, next slide. This contact information is very important and helpful. I've printed it out and it's up on my wall in my office because if you are a current grantee, you know that you're going to have to call JustGrants at sometime, the PMT help desk, so please print this out or have it handy somewhere with these phone numbers. Next slide. All right, take it away for our last Q&A and we should be wrapping up shortly, thank you.
YOLANDA CURTIS GIBSON: Jessica mentioned that she had to step away, so T-VSTTA team, are there any remaining questions in the chat or the Q&A box that we can answer in the 4 minutes remaining?
LAUREN SMILEY: I do not see any at the moment, Yolanda.
YOLANDA CURTIS GIBSON: Okay. There's also a comment in the chat with a reminder about the Indian Nations Conference in 2024. That is one of the events that OVC considers to be an OVC required training. And so all grantees are, well, strongly encouraged, but it's really required to send two staff from each OVC grant. We understand it may not be possible for every grant, especially if you have multiple grants, but please send at least two staff to that event.
LAUREN SMILEY: And here's those useful contact information phone numbers one more time. I do not see any other questions coming through the Q&A or the chat at this time. All right, well with that I just want to thank everyone for their time today and attention during this 2-hour webinar. I know there was a lot of information here, but we'll be sharing out resources and those contact phone numbers with you all after today's webinar.
As a reminder, the recording will be posted to the TVSSA website in the next 10 days. So make sure you check back out that website for other helpful resources. But again, thank you to everyone at OVC, TFMC, and Tina at PMT for participating today as well as all of you. And welcome again to the grantee community. Have a great rest of your day everyone. Thank you, bye-bye.
Opinions or points of view expressed in these recordings represent those of the speakers and do not necessarily represent the official position or policies of the U.S. Department of Justice. Any commercial products and manufacturers discussed in these recordings are presented for informational purposes only and do not constitute product approval or endorsement by the U.S. Department of Justice.
- OVC Tribal Victim Services Set-Aside Program: FY 2022 Grantee Orientation Effective Financial Management Webinar
- OVC Tribal Victim Services Set-Aside Program: FY 2022 Grantee Orientation Reporting and Monitoring Webinar
- OVC Tribal Victim Services Set-Aside Program: FY 2022 Grantee Orientation Welcome Webinar