68-1.003. Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Grants Program  


Effective on Thursday, November 28, 2019
  • 1(1) Introduction and Scope. It is the intent of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, pursuant to statutory authority under Section 23379.106, F.S., 25to administer a program to provide grants to eligible agencies, educational facilities, organizations, or persons in order to promote programs and activities important to understanding and managing the natural resources of the State of Florida. Projects awarded shall address fish, wildlife, or habitat management, conservation, recreation, boating safety, boating improvements and conservation education. Grants may be awarded to meet the program objectives of the Commission.

    90(2) Definitions. The following terms, as used in this section and any guidelines developed pursuant to this section, shall mean:

    110(a) “Agency” means any of the various state officers, departments, boards, commissions, divisions, bureaus, and councils and any other unit of organization, however designated, of the executive branch of state government.

    141(b) “Commission” means the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, which is a “state awarding agency” for purposes of the Single Audit Act, Section 165215.97, F.S.

    167(c) “Educational facility” means public or non-public colleges, universities, nature centers, museums, zoos, aquariums, or similar institutions.

    184(d) “Grant” means an award of financial assistance to a qualified recipient pursuant to a written agreement and in accordance with the applicable provisions of the Commission’s Grants Program.

    213(e) “Grantee” means a grant recipient and a “recipient” for purposes of the Single Audit Act, Section 230215.97, F.S.

    232(f) “Grants committee” means a committee established within the division, office, institute or program of the Commission administering the grant program. Each Grants Committee will consist of members appointed by the Executive Director or his/her designee.

    268(g) “Guidelines” means a written document, which is incorporated by reference into this rule containing procedures and polices, and which, in conjunction with this rule, shall govern the administration of the grant program.

    301(h) “Local governmental entity” means a county, municipality, or special district or unit of government (other than a district school board or community college), which independently exercises any type of governmental function.

    333(i) “Nonprofit organization” means any corporation, trust, association, cooperative, or other organization that is qualified under Section 501 (c) 3 of the IRS code, or 1) is operated primarily for scientific, educational service, or charitable purpose in the public interest; 2) is not organized primarily for profit; 3) uses net proceeds to maintain, improve, or expand the operations of the organization; and 4) has no part of its income or profit distributable to its members, directors, or officers.

    411(j) “Person” means individuals, associations, partnerships, and corporations, unless the context should otherwise require.

    425(k) “Pre-qualification” means that Commission staff will conduct a review and approve an applicant’s overall capabilities to perform the duties and responsibilities required by the grant program. The review may include, but is not limited to, consideration of the following: experience, curriculum vitae, quality and timeliness of past performance, compliance with scientific standards, and professional accreditation of the applicant.

    484(l) “Scope of work” means a document approved by a Grants Committee containing the description of the scientific, managerial, or educational merits of the proposed project and its benefit to the conservation and management of Florida’s natural resources and which defines the objectives, methods, project schedule and budget, deliverables, and details of payment (including but not limited to method, type, and frequency).

    546(3) General Program Criteria and Requirements. The following criteria shall apply to all Commission grant programs:

    562(a) Eligibility. Because the Commission implements a variety of grant programs, eligible applicants for each shall be identified in detailed written program guidelines and rules. In general, applicants may include other state agencies and local government entities, educational facilities, organizations, or persons. Interested parties should review specific program guidelines to determine eligibility.

    614(b) Grant Types. The Commission may solicit applications for the following types of grants:

    6281. Targeted. Due to the nature of a project, a grant may be targeted to a specific pre-qualified applicant that possesses the specialized knowledge, skills and capabilities required to perform the scope of the work.

    6632. General. Due to the diversity of the Commission’s programs and activities, grants may be available for projects in a broadly defined area where specific information required by the Commission has not been fully identified, and any potential and eligible applicant for the grant program may submit proposals.

    7113. Limited Request for Proposals. Grants may be available for projects for which the most likely applicant has not been already identified, but for which specific detailed qualifications or knowledge are required. In such cases, the Commission will issue a Limited Request for Proposals (LRFP) to solicit proposals from pre-qualified applicants who registered with the grant program. The Grants Committee shall determine which pre-qualified applicants will be notified based on previous experience and input from Commission staff. Pre-qualified applicants will be notified of LRFPs that fall within their area of expertise or specialty.

    804(c) Application. The Commission shall publish a notice to the public announcing the availability of grants and specifying the application submittal period and any other pertinent application information in electronic postings or via any other advertisement method identified in the program guidelines. Each program will have an application form, which must be submitted by the applicant within the timeframe specified by the notification.

    867(d) Evaluation and Selection. In addition to any other provisions set forth in this rule, each program shall develop and distribute the evaluation criteria upon which project selection shall be based and which shall be contained in the program guidelines. Each eligible application shall be evaluated on the basis of the criteria. Each program shall have a Grants Committee responsible for reviewing all applications and providing recommendations to the Commission.

    937(e) Grant Program Match. Any matching requirements, including acceptable forms of match and ineligible match sources, shall be clearly defined and set forth by each program in the guidelines. In general, acceptable match types may include, but are not limited to cash, equipment, in-kind contributions and donations.

    984(f) Agreements. The following procedures shall apply to the development and execution of agreements for grant awards:

    10011. Price and Cost Analysis. Each grant program shall specify in its guidelines the specific policies for determining fair and reasonable project costs and clearly define allowable project costs.

    10302. Negotiation and Development. Prior to an agreement being executed, the Commission shall notify each grantee of the type of agreement selected for a grant award. The type of agreement selected will ensure that the best delivery of service and the best value for the expenditure of State resources is received, and shall include sanctions for non-performance. Each agreement shall have a clearly established scope of work or project statement appended to the agreement.

    11043. Type. Agreements may specify grant compensation as Fixed Price (full payment amount is pre-set based upon a pre-approved detailed budget, satisfactory performance, and receipt by the Commission of all required reports and deliverables), Cost Reimbursement (payment will vary by the amount of actual expenditures documented by the Grantee), or a combination thereof.

    11574. Execution. The Commission may enter into an agreement to award available funds based on the final recommendations provided by the Grants Committee as approved by the Executive Director or his/her designee. Agreements may be executed with a retroactive start date of no more than 60 days provided that approval is granted from the Executive Director or his/her designee that it is in the best interest of the Commission and State to do so. The Executive Director or his/her designee will execute agreements for grant awards.

    12435. Special Award Conditions. Additional conditions will be attached to the grant agreement as needed if:

    1259a. An applicant has a history of unsatisfactory performance or non-conformance on a previous award, an applicant cannot provide proof of a management system that meets minimum standards for accounting or project management, or the Commission finds it necessary to impose such conditions to ensure the timely delivery of the services; or

    1311b. Additional conditions are necessary to ensure proper compliance with Commission policy, State or Federal law; or

    1328c. Additional conditions are recommended by the Grants Committee as necessary or appropriate to achieve the goal of the grant or grant program.

    1351(g) Pre-qualification. Grant programs may develop and maintain a list of pre-qualified applicants. No pre-qualification review is required for:

    13701. State agencies;

    13732. Persons or non-profit organizations named in Florida Statutes as eligible to receive Commission grant funds;

    13893. Persons or non-profit organizations named in appropriation bills of the Florida Legislature to whom funds are directed;

    14074. Local, county, state, and federal research entities;

    14155. Public universities and independent non-profit colleges or universities located within Florida and accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools;

    14376. Persons named in revenue grants received by the Commission who will act in a sub-recipient or vendor role;

    14567. Nonprofit organizations with scientific, environmental or natural resource missions.

    1466(4) Grant Administration and Post Award. The following administration and post award conditions for grants shall apply to each program:

    1486(a) Monitoring. The Commission shall actively monitor grantee performance and compliance during the period of performance of the grant. Monitoring may include, but is not limited to review and evaluation of progress reports, project audits for compliance with the conditions of the agreement, State law, allowable expenditures, and site visits.

    1536(b) Funding. Appropriations for grant programs arise from state authorized discretionary expenditures and federal aid to address Commission program needs. The amount of available funding will vary by fiscal year and is limited to annual legislative appropriations less current or ongoing program obligations for multiyear agreements and administration.

    1584(c) Payments. The Commission shall make payments for performance under a grant in accordance with all applicable state financial guidelines for eligible project costs as defined by specific grant program guidelines and the grant agreement. The following conditions also apply:

    16241. Costs must be incurred between the effective date and the project completion date identified in the agreement, except for any pre-project costs or match funds contributed by the grantee and specifically identified in the agreement;

    16602. Sufficient documentation must be provided with each payment request to satisfy pre-audit reviews of the project costs and performance, payments are otherwise fixed in the agreement;

    16873. The Commission will not provide funding in excess of the grant amount, unless a contingency for additional costs is included in the agreement or an amendment to the agreement is executed.

    1719(d) Closeout. Procedures for the proper completion and termination of an agreement shall include but not be limited to:

    17381. Submission by the grantee, receipt and approval by the project manager of all deliverables required by the agreement;

    17572. A post-audit of project costs to be completed by the project manager, which shall include a determination for any disallowed costs and Florida Single Audit Act compliance;

    17853. Recommendations for project cost adjustments for disallowed costs that must be reimbursed by the grantee to the program.

    1804(e) Reimbursement to the State. Each grantee shall have no more than 60 days to submit additional pertinent documentation justifying any expenditure which has been identified by a Commission audit as not consistent with the grant program. Any payments for expenditures which are not consistent with the grant program shall be reimbursed to the Commission.

    1859(f) The Commission and any grantees or subgrantees shall comply with the Single Audit Act, Section 1875215.97, F.S.

    1877(5) Nongame Wildlife Grants Program grants shall meet all additional program requirements set forth in the Florida Nongame Wildlife Grants Program Guidelines (dated March 2007), which are hereby incorporated by reference. 1908The following forms are hereby adopted and incorporated by reference: FWC/NWGP-1, entitled “Florida Nongame Wildlife Grants Program Budget Form,” June 2008 and FWC/NWGP-2, entitled “Florida Nongame Wildlife Grants Program Application Form,” June 2008. The guidelines and forms are available from the Commission at 620 South Meridian Street, Tallahassee, Florida 32399-1600.

    1960(6) Florida Artificial Reef Program grants shall meet all requirements and guidelines set forth in Chapter 68E-9, F.A.C.

    1978(7) Derelict Vessel Removal Grant Program grants and grant applications shall meet all requirements 1992set forth in the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission’s (Commission) Derelict Vessel Removal Grant Program Guidelines (November 2019), which are hereby incorporated by reference. The following form is hereby adopted and incorporated by reference: Derelict Vessel Removal Grant Application, form FWC/DV-APP (November 2019). The guidelines and form are available at 2043https://www.flrules.org/Gateway/reference.asp?No=Ref-11353, 2045and 2046https://www.flrules.org/Gateway/reference.asp?No=Ref-11354, 2048or from the Commission at 620 South Meridian Street, 1M, Tallahassee, Florida 32399-1600.

    2061(8) Florida Boating Safety and Education Grant Program grants shall meet all additional program requirements set forth in the Boating Safety and Education Grant Program Guidelines (dated January 2015), which are hereby incorporated by reference 2096and available at 2099http://www.flrules.org/Gateway/reference.asp?No=Ref-049532101. The following form is hereby adopted and incorporated by reference: FWC/FBSEG, Florida Boating Safety and Education Grant Application, 07/08. The guidelines and form are available from the Commission at 620 S. Meridian Street, 1M, Tallahassee, Florida 32399-1600 or www.myfwc.com/boating/grants/fbseg.htm.

    2141(9) Florida Boating Improvement Program grants shall meet all additional program requirements set forth in the Florida Boating Improvement Program Guidelines (July 2019), which are hereby incorporated by reference. The following form is hereby adopted and incorporated by reference: Florida Boating Improvement Program Grant Application, forms FWC/FBIP (July 2019). The guidelines and forms are available at 2197https://www.flrules.org/Gateway/reference.asp?No=Ref-11085 2199and 2200https://www.flrules.org/Gateway/reference.asp?No=Ref-11086, 2202or from the Commission at 620 S. Meridian Street, 1M, Tallahassee, Florida 32399-16002215.

    2216(10) Fish and Wildlife Research Institute Grants Program grants shall meet all additional program requirements set forth in the Fish and Wildlife Research Grants Program Guidelines (dated March 2007), which are hereby incorporated by reference. 2251The following forms are hereby adopted and incorporated by reference: FWC/FWRIGP-1, entitled “Florida Fish and Wildlife Research Institute Grants Program Budget Form,” June 2008 and FWC/FWRIGP-2, entitled “Florida Fish and Wildlife Research Institute Grants Program Application Form,” June 2008. 2292The guidelines and forms are available from the Commission at the Fish and Wildlife Research Institute, 100 Eighth Avenue, S.E., Saint Petersburg, Florida 33701-5020.

    2316(11) Florida’s State Wildlife Grants Program grants shall meet all additional program requirements set forth in Florida’s State Wildlife Grants Program Guidelines (dated February 2019), which are hereby incorporated by reference 2347and available at 2350https://www.flrules.org/Gateway/reference.asp?No=Ref-102952352. 2353The following forms are hereby adopted and incorporated by reference: FWC/SWG-1, entitled “Florida State Wildlife Grants Program Budget Form for Commission Principal Investigators,” (dated February 2017), available at 2382https://www.flrules.org/Gateway/reference.asp?No=Ref-07941; 2384FWC/SWG-2, entitled “Florida State Wildlife Grants Program Budget Form for Non-Commission Principal Investigators,” (dated February 2017), available at 2403https://www.flrules.org/Gateway/reference.asp?No=Ref-07942; 2405FWC/SWG-3, entitled “Florida State Wildlife Grants Program Application Form,” (dated February 2017), available at 2420https://www.flrules.org/Gateway/reference.asp?No=Ref-07943; 2422FWC/SWG-4, entitled “Florida State Wildlife Grants Initial Review Form,” (dated February 2017), available at 2437https://www.flrules.org/Gateway/reference.asp?No=Ref-08129; 2439FWC/SWG-5, entitled “Florida State Wildlife Grants Technical Review Form,” (dated February 2017), available at 2454https://www.flrules.org/Gateway/reference.asp?No=Ref-08131; 2456and FWC/SWG-6, entitled “Florida State Wildlife Grants Final Review Form,” (dated February 2017), available at 2472https://www.flrules.org/Gateway/reference.asp?No=Ref-081302474. 2475The guidelines and forms are also available from the Commission at 620 South Meridian Street, Tallahassee, Florida 32399-1600.

    2493(12) Boating Infrastructure Grant Program grants shall meet all additional program requirements set forth in the Boating Infrastructure Grant Program Guidelines (dated 2/2019) and 251750 CFR Part 86, 2521Boating Infrastructure Grant (BIG) Program (effective June 5, 2015), 2530which are hereby incorporated by reference. 2536The following form is hereby adopted and incorporated by reference: FWC/BIGP-APP, Boating Infrastructure Grant Program Grant Application, 2/2019. The Boating Infrastructure Grant Program Guidelines (2/2019) and Boating Infrastructure Grant Program Grant Application, 2/2019 form 2570are available from the Commission at 620 S. Meridian St., 1M, Tallahassee, Florida 32399-1600 or 2585https://www.flrules.org/Gateway/reference.asp?No=Ref-103832587. 258850 CFR Part 86, 2592Boating Infrastructure Grant (BIG) Program (effective June 5, 2015) is available from the Commission at 620 S. Meridian Street, 1M, Tallahassee, Florida 32399-1600 or 2616https://www.flrules.org/Gateway/reference.asp?No=Ref-074222618.

    2619(13) Non-Traditional Section 6 Grants Program grants shall meet all additional program requirements set forth in Florida’s Non-Traditional Section 6 Grants Program Guidelines (November 2014), FWC/NTS6-1, which are hereby incorporated by reference and available at 2654http://www.flrules.org/Gateway/reference.asp?No=Ref-049572656. The following forms are hereby adopted and incorporated by reference: FWC/NTS6-2, entitled “Florida’s Non-Traditional Section 6 Grants Program Application Form,” dated November 2014 and available at 2684http://www.flrules.org/Gateway/reference.asp?No=Ref-04954; 2686FWC/NTS6-3 “Florida’s Non-Traditional Section 6 Grants Program Task Schedule and Timeline,” dated November 2014 and available at 2704http://www.flrules.org/Gateway/reference.asp?No=Ref-04956; 2706and FWC/NTS6-4 “Florida’s Non-Traditional Section 6 Grants Program Budget Sheet,” dated November 2014 and available at 2723http://www.flrules.org/Gateway/reference.asp?No=Ref-049552725. The guidelines and forms are also available from the Commission at 620 South Meridian Street, Tallahassee, Florida 32399-1600.

    2744(14) Sport Fish Restoration-R3 Fishing Grant Program grants shall meet all requirements set forth in the Commission’s R3 Fishing Grant Program Guidelines (dated July 2019), which are hereby incorporated by reference and available at 2778http://www.flrules.org/Gateway/reference.asp?No=Ref-107952780. The form FWC: R3-F072019 (dated July 2019), entitled “Florida’s R3 Fishing Grant Program Application,” is hereby adopted and incorporated by reference and available at 2806https://www.flrules.org/Gateway/reference.asp?No=Ref-107952808. The guidelines and form are also available from the Commission at 620 South Meridian Street, Tallahassee, Florida 32399-1600, and on the Commission’s website at https://myfwc.com/fishing/.

    2834Rulemaking Authority 2836206.606, 2837327.04, 2838327.47, 2839376.15(3)(d), 2840379.106 FS. 2842Law Implemented 2844206.606, 2845327.47, 2846328.72, 2847376.15(d), 2848(e), 2849379.106 FS. 2851History–New 4-4-04, Amended 3-15-05, Formerly 285668A-2.015, 2857Amended 5-22-07, 7-6-08, 1-18-09, 3-21-10, 6-30-10, 5-20-12, 2-9-15, 9-11-16, 9-13-16, 4-23-17, 5-24-18, 2-21-19, 4-18-19, 7-17-19, 9-11-19, 11-28-19.