GRANTS GAM Admin Reqs

Effective Date: 07/01/2018

Procedure

The terms of a grant agreement may be adjusted under certain circumstances.  Depending on the scope, adjustments are of two types: a revision to the work plan approved with the grant agreement or an amendment to the grant agreement.   All work plan revisions and grant agreement amendments must be finalized prior to the expiration of the grant agreement.  Be sure to submit requests to BWSR three to six months prior to grant expiration.  Requests received after the expiration of the grant agreement must be denied. 

Grantee steps for Requesting a Grant Agreement

Work Plan Revisions Eligibility and Procedure

Minor work plan budget adjustments that affect up to 10% of the total grant amount or up to $50,000, whichever is less, can be made by the grantee without Board Conservationist approval.  Documentation of the change should be made in eLINK (except for the Disaster Recovery Assistance Program which is outside eLINK) and notification to the Board Conservationist is recommended.

Moderate changes to an approved work plan that require BWSR work plan revision approval, but not a grant amendment, include, but are not limited to the following: 

  • A work plan budget adjustment of >10% of the total grant amount or >$50,000, whichever is less. Adjustments >40% of the total grant amount or >$200,000, whichever is less, require a grant agreement amendment.
  • A scope change that changes the resource or water body impacted, or a significant reduction in the originally proposed pollution reduction estimates (eLINK proposed indicators) from the grant application and/or approved work plan. BWSR reserves the right to require an amendment based on proposed changes. (For some grant programs, such as DRAP, a work plan budget may consist of a BWSR approved project list.)

The procedure to submit a work plan revision request is the following:

  1. The grantee should consult the Board Conservationist for guidance as early as possible when the potential work plan revision is needed.
  2. The grantee must provide a written request to their Board Conservationist. See “Criteria for Requests” and “Required Information to Process Request” below.    
  3. BWSR staff will review the request and select from the following:   
    • If the request is approved, the Board Conservationist will provide approval via an eLINK journal entry that is emailed to the grantee.  Approval must be obtained prior to expiration of the grant agreement or work associated with the work plan revision begins.
    • If the request is denied, the Board Conservationist will provide documentation of the denial via an eLINK journal entry emailed to the grantee. 
  4. Following approval by the Board Conservationist and receiving the email generated from the eLINK Journal the grantee may begin work utilizing the approved, revised work plan.

Insufficient eLINK documentation of spending shifts or deviations from these procedures will delay grant payments, report approvals, and grant closeouts.

Grant Agreement Amendments Eligibility and Procedure

Contact the Board Conservationist to discuss eligibility and procedures. Eligible activities or actions that require a grant amendment include, but are not limited to, the following:  

  • Extensions to the grant period;
  • A change of the targeted resource or pollutant of concern;
  • Any increase in the grant amount;
  • A work plan budget adjustment of >40% of the total grant amount or >$200,000, whichever is less, that reduces the total activity or shifts of funds to different activities, or a significant change in activities identified in the work plan. 

The procedure to submit a grant amendment request is the following:

  1. The grantee should consult the Board Conservationist as early in the grant agreement period as possible for guidance and at least 3-6 months prior to the end of the grant agreement.
  2. The grantee must provide a written request for an amendment to the grant agreement to the Board Conservationist.  See “Criteria for Requests” and “Required Information to Process Request” below.
  3. If submitted with sufficient time for review, BWSR staff will review the amendment request and select from the following:
    • If the request is approved, BWSR staff will generate an official Grant Amendment document for grantee Board approval which will be distributed via eLINK.  The document is required to have a grantee Official Signature.   All signatures on the grant amendment must be obtained prior to expiration of the grant agreement.
    • If the request is denied, a written response will be provided to the grantee.
  4. Send the scanned copy of the Grant Amendment document approved by the grantee Board and signed with an Official Signature to BWSR.grants@state.mn.us and the Board Conservationist.
  5. The executed grant amendment will be uploaded by St. Paul into the “Attachments” section for the grant in eLINK.

Criteria for Requests

The criteria BWSR staff uses to consider requests for grant agreement amendments and work plan revisions include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Project delays due to inclement weather, contractor pullout, staff vacancies/illness, unanticipated landowner situations or changes, timelines associated with additional project funding sources, or other circumstances beyond the grantee’s control.
  • Unanticipated environmental conditions that require a project modification, such as unexpected soil conditions or circumstances that were not part of the preliminary design of the project.
  • Whether the requested change continues to fit the original intent of the grant, i.e. adjusted project meets the eligibility requirements of the funding source, outcomes and activities are similar to the original project, life expectancy of the project is substantially the same or greater, etc.
  • Cost Changes from originally approved budgeted amounts; shifts in spending from originally approved budget including match. Work plan budget adjustments are considered cumulative from the last approved work plan.
  • Resource of Concern changes from the original targeted project work plan resource of concern.
  • Pollutant of Concern changes from the original targeted project work plan pollutant of concern.
  • Match expenditures changes that will substantially change the activities and outcomes.
  • Grant Agreement Amendments and Work Plan Revisions must be approved before final payment is requested.   

BWSR will review these criteria to determine if the amendment or work plan revision request will be approved.

Required Information to Process Requests

Grantees are encouraged to consult their Board Conservationist to verify whether or not proposed changes require a work plan revision or grant agreement amendment.  Grant amendment and work plan revision requests must include:

  • The fiscal year and grant name;
  • eLINK activity name(s), if applicable;
  • The purpose and extent of the request; i.e., extension to the grant period, change to an approved budgeted amount, or a modification to the project;
  • Explain why the original grant agreement cannot be completed as approved, in consideration of the criteria above;
  • Describe how the amendment or work plan revision will affect the originally proposed eLINK Activity Actions and/or Activity Details, indicators  if applicable and/or any additional outcomes that will be achieved; and
  • A brief narrative of the new Activity Action and/or Activity Detail proposed, if applicable. 

History

Description of revisions

Date

Revised format; minor text changes for clarity and to removed dated information.

7/1/2017

Revised to reflect amendment document distributed through eLINK, include a dollar amount for when work plan budget changes require BWSR approval, and clarify budget adjustments are considered cumulative in the Criteria for Requests.   

7/1/2018

 

 

Contact

Nicole Clapp
Grants Coordinator