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Grant Selection and Performance

October 6, 2017

PRESENT: Carol Rancourt, Joe Young, Nicki Pellenz, Maryalice Crofton  

Members convened by teleconference at 8:30 am. 

Discussion items:

- Recruitment of specialized peer reviewers  
The opiod-related proposal is expected in this fall’s competition. Typically our external peer reviewers are familiar with education, environment, and human services as well as volunteerism. We need to be sure there are reviewers with substance use expertise in the mix. Commissioners are asked to spread the word and let folks know the deadline for applying is October 27. The certification of reviewers based on credentials will be part of the November 3 Grant task force meeting. Because we will have another two rounds of grant-making in the spring, there is no limit to the number of applicants. All information can be found at http://www.maineservicecommission.gov/grants/peer-overview/ . 

- Scheduling the training for task force members new to grant selection 
The training for task force members on their part of grant selection will be part of the November 3 meeting. It was postponed from last spring. TF members should plan on an extra 30 minutes for the meeting since there will be some business as well. The meeting will be teleconference but run from 8:30-10 am.  

- Heads up on more competitive selection issues changed by CNCS  
The Corporation removed a number of narrative issues including cost effectiveness and budget adequacy. The criteria were maintained but the instruction is to review the budget for errors and congruence with the narrative. That means peer reviewers will be doing part of the work task force members have done. After discussion, it was agreed that it is too late to restructure the task force review criteria. We will go through this round as is and consider revisions in February before the Formula competition.

- What info the TF wants regularly regarding grantees 
Last fall the TF requested quarterly updates on grantee performance. Maryalice will implement this as of the reports due next week. The clarification needed is what is of highest interest to the members. There is a lot of data submitted. Members present asked for a brief report on three indicators of performance. That will be presented at the November meeting for the grants ending in September. The first substantive report for programs starting up will be submitted Jan 20 so that data will be provided in February.

- Update on filling Grants Officer position  
The request for exemption from the hiring freeze has been submitted. It’s not clear when there will be a response but hopefully in the next 30 days.   

There being no other items to discuss, the meeting closed at 9:50 am.  

Next meeting: Friday, November 3, 2017