New York State Soil and Water Conservation Committee (NYS SWCC)
08/20/18 4:30 PM Local Time
Grants to New York soil and water conservation districts and groups of conservation districts for nonpoint source pollution control and abatement projects. Funding may be requested for planning projects or the implementation of agricultural best management practice systems.
This Request for Proposals (RFP) applies to proposals submitted for funding consideration from the Environmental Protection Fund (EPF).
The New York State Soil and Water Conservation Committee (State Committee) invites Soil and Water Conservation Districts, or groups of Districts acting jointly, to submit proposals for funding under the Agricultural Nonpoint Source Abatement and Control Program. Program funds are available for nonpoint source abatement and control projects that plan (AEM Tier III) or implement (AEM Tier IV) Agricultural Best Management Practice Systems on New York State farms. All projects must consist of activities that will reduce, abate, control, or prevent nonpoint source pollution originating from agricultural sources. Applications must be for ONE of the following: planning activities (AEM Tier III), OR implementation (AEM Tier IV), except for the implementation of an Agricultural Waste Storage Facility as specified in this RFP.
Availability of funding for this program is from the State Fiscal Year 2017-2018 Budget which includes an appropriation for this purpose.
Goal of the Program:
Led by the New York State Soil and Water Conservation Committee, in coordination with the Department of Agriculture and Markets, the goal of the Agricultural Nonpoint Source Abatement and Control Program is to reduce and or prevent the nonpoint source contribution from agricultural activities in watersheds across the state. The program utilizes the Agricultural Environmental Management (AEM) framework and provides cost-share funds through Soil and Water Conservation Districts for activities, plans and the implementation of Best Management Practices (BMPs) Systems, as defined in Section 3 of the Soil and Water Conservation Districts Law.
Applicants must propose to do ONE of the following:
1) conduct planning activities (AEM Tier III) OR
2) implement (AEM Tier IV) Agricultural BMP Systems
Applicants requesting State funding to conduct planning projects must have completed a current AEM Tier I inventory and an AEM Tier II assessment on all participating farms. Planning projects should follow the tiered planning process set forth in “The Guide for Agricultural Environmental Management in New York,” as adopted by the State Committee.
Applicants requesting State funding for the implementation of eligible BMP systems must have completed an AEM Tier 3 plan, which could include a Tier 3A that addresses the resource concern identified for implementation, a Tier 3B Comprehensive Nutrient Management Plan (CNMP), or a Tier 3C Whole Farm Plan (WFP).
Applicants requesting State funding for implementation of an Agricultural Waste Storage Facility must demonstrate that an AEM Tier 3A, Screening Tool for Agricultural Waste Storage Facility, or a CNMP has been completed for the farm(s) prior to submission of an application pursuant to this RFP. In all cases, the Tier 3A Screening Tool for Agricultural Waste Storage Facility must be submitted with each application to verify that the items have been reviewed and completed. If the application is selected for funding, a CNMP must be certified before payment can be issued for the completed BMP.
Applicants requesting State funding for implementation of a covered barnyard or heavy use area must complete and submit the Screening Tool for Roofs and Covers for Heavy Use Areas, Barnyards and Feedlots with each application.
The Agricultural Management Practices Catalogue shall serve as guidance for Best Management Practice (BMP) System selection. The Agricultural Management Practices Catalogue has been made available as a download on Sharepoint. Funds may be used for preventative initiative, remedial initiatives, or both. All BMPs proposed for implementation must meet New York State NRCS Standards and Specifications; if no NYS NRCS Standards or Specifications exist then the practice must be designed to meet nationally recognized standards (e.g. American Concrete Institute Standards.) All practices implemented must be approved by an individual with appropriate approval authority.
BMP Operation and Maintenance Guidelines:
A BMP that is funded by the NYS Agricultural NPS Abatement & Control Program must be maintained and properly operated for the conservation purposes for which the practice was approved. The project sponsor must ensure that active BMPs, at a minimum, be operated and maintained by the Landowner and/or Operator for the lifespan period. For information on BMPs including life spans please refer to the Agricultural Best Management Practice Systems Catalogue.
Eligible expenses include:
-Architectural and/or engineering services
-Plans and specifications, including personal services to conduct individual farm level agricultural nonpoint source abatement and control plans
-Consultant and legal services
-Other direct expenses related to planning and implementation (e.g. funding for cultural
resource impact determinations for ground disturbing BMPs).
State assistance payments may not be used to cover the lease or purchase of equipment not directly related to the function of the BMP. If the equipment is directly related to the function of the BMP state assistance payments can be used. Equipment costs may also be an eligible match contribution. It is advisable for applicants to request clarification on the eligibility of specific equipment during the open questions and answers period and all determinations will be added to the Questions and Answers document.
State assistance payments may be used to cover the costs associated with the development of a Tier 3B CNMP or Tier 3C Whole Farm Plan and associated plan update costs for two additional years.
All costs associated with the operation and maintenance of BMPs will be the sole responsibility of the landowner and/or operator and cannot be used as a match to State funding. The project sponsor must require that the landowner and/or operator maintain the practice during its expected life span.
BMPs to be implemented on rented property should not be submitted for funding unless there is a written lease for the use of the property for the life span of the BMP.
GrantWatch ID#: 179489
The earliest contract start date would be 8/21/2018 and the latest end date would be 5/31/2023. These dates may be subject to change. The project sponsor may request a different term, if necessary. Funding of proposals that extend over more than one State fiscal year will be subject to the reappropriation of funds.
Proposals for funding will be accepted from Soil and Water Conservation Districts, or a group of Districts acting jointly, who will be referred to as "Project Sponsors." Groups of Districts acting jointly should submit one application with one district assuming lead sponsor status. It will be the lead sponsor’s responsibility to ensure project completion and necessary reports are accepted and filed with the New York State Soil and Water Conservation Committee.
If the proposal contains no contribution from the owner or operator of agricultural land, then the State may fund up to 75 percent of the total eligible costs for planning or BMP implementation. The amount of State funding may be increased by a percentage equal to the percentage of the total eligible costs that are contributed by the landowner or operator provided, however, that in no event shall the amount of State funding exceed 87.5 percent of total eligible costs. The State funded contribution in dollars or percentages cannot increase because of budget changes or variations.
Landowner or operator contributions used to increase the State portion of the project cost may be in the form of cash, or in kind services which are calculated using an assigned cash value. An assigned cash value provided by the landowner or operator must be reasonable and is subject to adjustment by the committee. When applying for an Agricultural Waste Storage Facility, a CNMP must be developed or updated. Costs associated with CNMP development or update of an existing plan may be utilized as landowner or operator match ONLY when applying for an Agricultural Waste Storage Facility.
If the Project Sponsor will be contributing match, the contribution may be in the form of in-kind services and/or cash (non-state funds). Recommended or actual hourly rates may be used to determine the value of Project Sponsor in-kind services. Funds from the Agricultural Nonpoint Source Abatement and Control Program will be provided contingent upon the sponsor receiving necessary funds to provide the required match. A written commitment for other required funds or resources must be provided before the funding allocations will be finalized.
Sponsor and landowner contributions and expenditures that were made or incurred prior to the contract start date or after contract completion, as designated by the Department of Agriculture and Markets (Department), may not be utilized as matching funds or reimbursed by the State.
All questions must be submitted in writing to Bethany Bzduch by August 6, 2018. Applicants should note that all clarifications are to be resolved prior to the submission of a proposal. A list of questions about the RFP, answers to those questions as well as any addenda to the RFP, will be added to the Frequently Asked Questions Document posted on Sharepoint along with the electronic version of this RFP and other program attachments. Questions and responses will be posted starting no later than June 3, 2018 through August 13, 2018. All questions and answers shall be incorporated into the RFP as a formal addendum.
Proposals for funding under the Agricultural Nonpoint Source Abatement and Control Program must be submitted through the NYS SWCC Sharepoint Site by 4:30 PM local time, August 20, 2018.
Request for Proposals Timeline:
-Release Request for Proposals: June 2018
-Deadline for submittal of questions: August 6, 2018
-Final Questions and Answers Posted: August 13, 2018
-Deadline for Proposal Submission: August 20, 2018
-Award Announcement: October 2018
Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.
P: (518) 457-3738
F: (518) 457-3412
New York State Soil & Water Conservation Committee
10 B Airline Drive
Albany, NY 12235
USA: New York City; New York