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Grant Selection and Performance

June 17, 2013

June Grant Selection & Performance Task Force Minutes

Regular Meeting: June 14, 2013

Attending: Celeste Branham, Betsy Fitzgerald, Joan McDonald, David Wihry

Absent: Kathy Billings, Scott Blake, Susan Hammond, Ron Holmes

Guests: Joely Ross

Staff: Michael Ashmore

 

COST REIMBURSEMENT CONTINUATIONS

REAL School Continuation

Status and key elements of the Continuation Application and Continuation Assessment Summary prepared by staff were reviewed.  A number of positive elements were noted, particularly for a first year program.  Overall performance has been strong, especially in the areas of member recruitment, training, collaborative work with other programs and willingness to ask for needed support.  Retention issues were described and explained.  Narrative had considerable typographical errors and budget had a number of calculation errors.  Task Force recommends funding pending correction of errors to budget and narrative.

Motion for Commission:

Regional School Unit 14, REAL School AmeriCorps Program be funded at the requested level of not more than $133,000 Federal Share, to be matched by at least $178,096 in local funds, supporting 10 member service years distributed over 13 slots pending correction of all narrative and budget errors.

Multilingual Leadership Corps Continuation

Status and key elements of the Continuation Application and Continuation Assessment Summary prepared by staff were reviewed.  A number of positive elements were noted.  Overall performance has been strong, especially in the areas of overall compliance. In addition training, collaborative work with other programs and willingness share materials and best practices.  Recruitment level was explained; some summer positions are just now being filled. 

Application scorers were concerned about the listed membership of the program's advisory council.  It appears to be heavily weighted towards members and site staff with small representation of recipients of service. Continuation budget had a number of calculation errors.  Task Force recommends funding pending correction of errors to budget and set a condition related to the membership of the advisory committee.

Motion for Commission:

Goodwill Industries of Northern New England, Multilingual Leadership Corps, be funded at the requested level of not more than $260,000 Federal Share, to be matched by at least $359,766 in local funds, supporting 20.03 member service years distributed over 37 slots pending correction of all budget errors and diversification of Advisory Committee membership within 90 days of funding.

Membership of advisory council will be reported to Commission staff before the deadline.

 

FIXED PRICE CONTINUATIONS (note: Fixed price grants do not require evidence of local match nor budgets)

Island Institute Island Fellows AmeriCorps Program

Status and key elements of the Continuation Application and Continuation Assessment Summary prepared by staff were reviewed.  A number of positive elements were noted.  Overall performance has been strong, especially in the areas of member recruitment, retention and training. 

It was noted that the instance of late reporting was related to a significant staff transition at Island Institute.  Chris Wolfe, the long-time program director for the Fellows Program, left earlier this spring to take a new position outside the organization. A replacement has been hired and will start mid-June.  This raises the overall risk level of the program.  Additionally, staff has noted some reports indicating activities that may not be clearly aligned with the funded proposal.  As no formal site visit has been made this year, the Committee does not feel this rises to the level of funding Condition as this time.  However, the Committee does want to inform program staff of the concern.

Task Force recommends funding with the condition that the newly hired program coordinator participate in new grantee trainings provided by the Commission.

Motion for Commission:

Island Institute, Island Fellows AmeriCorps Program, be funded at the requested level of $130,000 Federal Share, under Fixed Price reimbursement rules, supporting 10 member service years distributed over 10 slots with the condition that the newly hired program coordinator participate in all 2013 new grantee trainings provided by the Commission.

The Task Force also directs the program to carefully review its member activities to ensure that they are congruent with those described in the funded proposal

FoodCorps Inc., FoodCorps Maine

Status and key elements of the Continuation Application and Continuation Assessment Summary prepared by staff were reviewed.  A number of positive elements were noted.  Overall performance has been good, especially in the areas of member recruitment, retention and training. 

It was noted that late reporting and other minor compliance delays appear to be related to the transition between the requirements on National Direct grantees and the somewhat different ones applied by the Commission.

It is also noted that FoodCorps was funded at a rate significantly below the typical amount for a Fixed Price grant because of the limitations on available funding.  FoodCorps applied for and was granted supplementary funds to support the typical reimbursement rate.  The program requests that this be done again.

Task Force recommends funding with the request that all reports be submitted in a timely manner.

Motion for Commission:

FoodCorps, FoodCorps Maine Program, be funded at the requested level of $78,000 Federal Share, under Fixed Price reimbursement rules, supporting 10 member service years distributed over 10 slots.

The Task Force also asks that the program carefully observe due dates and submit required reports in a timely manner

 

Supplemental Requests:

Three of the four applicants submitted requests for supplemental funding and/or positions.  The Task Force prioritized the requests based on need and Commission priorities of geographic distribution and cost per member.

REAL School requests for three supplemental minimum-time EAP slots (these are position requests that will not increase the federal portion of the program.  This lowers program cost/MSY and over Formula cost/MSY for state).

Goodwill Industries requests for two supplemental funded full-time slots (to expand programming in their current service area).

FoodCorps requests supplemental funding to support four full-time slots in order to keep the same number of positions that they were awarded this year ($52,000) AND an additional 5 positions to expand program to new sites (these expand AmeriCorps program to new areas of the state).

The Task Force recommends that requests for supplemental positions be ordered and prioritized to ensure that positions are apportioned based on priority if less funding than requested is available.

Motion for Commission:

The staff is directed to prioritize supplemental requests as follows:

  1. Funding to support continuation of the Four positions FoodCorps received this year
  2. Supplemental Ed Award Only positions for REAL School
  3. Additional full price positions for FoodCorps
  4. Full price positions for GINNE