FR Doc 03-13835
[Federal Register: June 3, 2003 (Volume 68, Number 106)]
[Page 33321-33323]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access []

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[CFDA No. 84.341]

Community Technology Centers Program

AGENCY: Office of Vocational and Adult Education, U.S. Department of 

ACTION: Notice inviting applications for new awards for fiscal year 
(FY) 2003.


    Purpose of Program: As authorized by Title V, Part D, Subpart 11, 
Section 5511-13 of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 
(ESEA), as amended by the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) of 2001, the 
purpose of the Community Technology Centers (CTC) program is to assist 
eligible applicants to create or expand community technology centers 
that will provide disadvantaged residents of economically distressed 
urban and rural communities with access to information technology and 
related training. Eligible applicants are community-based organizations 
(including faith-based organizations), State and local educational 
agencies, institutions of higher education, and other entities such as 
foundations, libraries, museums, public and private nonprofit 
organizations, and for-profit businesses, or consortia thereof. To be 
eligible, an

[[Page 33322]]

applicant must also have the capacity to expand significantly access to 
computers and related services for disadvantaged residents of 
economically distressed urban and rural communities who would otherwise 
be denied such access.
    The focus of the CTC program competition has changed to give 
absolute priority to those applicants who will focus on improving the 
academic achievement of low-achieving high school students while 
continuing to provide a community technology center for all members of 
their community. Thus, grant recipients must meet this priority as they 
use grant funds to create or expand community technology centers that 
expand access to information technology and related training for 
disadvantaged residents of distressed urban or rural communities and 
evaluate the effectiveness of this project.
    Eligible Applicants: Eligible applicants shall be an institution of 
higher education, a State Education Agency, a Local Educational Agency, 
an entity (such as a foundation, museum, library, for-profit business, 
public or private nonprofit organization, or community based 
organization, including faith based organizations), or a consortium 
thereof. In addition, eligible applicants shall have the capacity to 
significantly expand access to computers and related services for 
disadvantaged residents of economically distressed urban and rural 
communities who would otherwise be denied such access.
    Applications Available: May 30, 2003.

Application Procedures

    The Government Paperwork Elimination Act (GPEA) of 1998 (Pub. L. 
105-277) and the Federal Financial Assistance Management Improvement 
Act of 1999 (Pub. L. 106-107) encourage us to undertake initiatives to 
improve our grant processes. Enhancing the ability of individuals and 
entities to conduct business with us electronically is a major part of 
our response to these Acts. Therefore, the Department is taking steps 
to adopt the Internet as our chief means of conducting transactions in 
order to improve services to our customers and to simplify and expedite 
our processes.
    The Department is requiring that applications for the FY 2003 
Community Technology Centers Program competition for new awards be 
submitted electronically using e-APPLICATION through the U.S. 
Department of Education's e-GRANTS system. The e-GRANTS system is 
accessible through its portal page at
    Applicants who are unable to submit an application through the e-
GRANTS systems may apply for a waiver to the electronic submission 
requirement. To apply for a waiver, applicants must explain the 
reason(s) that prevent(s) them from using the Internet to submit their 
applications. The reason(s) must be outlined in a letter addressed to: 
Gisela Harkin, U.S. Department of Education, Office of Vocational and 
Adult Education, 330 ``C'' Street, SW., Washington, DC 20202-7100. 
Please mark your envelope ``CTC competition waiver request.'' The 
letter requesting the waiver is to be submitted no later than two (2) 
weeks before the deadline for transmittal of applications; last minute 
requests will not be considered.
    Any application that receives a waiver to the electronic submission 
requirement will be given the same consideration in the review process 
as an electronic application.

Pilot Project for Electronic Submission of Applications

    In FY 2003, the U.S. Department of Education is continuing to 
expand its pilot project of electronic submission of applications to 
include additional formula programs and additional discretionary grant 
competitions. The Community Technology Centers (CTC) program (CFDA 
84.341) is one of the programs included in the pilot project. If you 
are an applicant under the CTC program, you must submit your 
application to us in electronic format or receive a waiver.
    The pilot project involves the use of the Electronic Grant 
Application System (e-APPLICATION, formerly e-GAPS) portion of the 
Grant Administration and Payment System (GAPS). We shall continue to 
evaluate its success and solicit suggestions for improvement.
    Please note the following:

--Do not wait until the deadline date for the transmittal of 
applications to submit your application electronically. If you wait 
until the deadline date to submit your application electronically and 
you are unable to access the e-APPLICATION system, you must contact the 
Help Desk by 4:30 p.m. EST on the deadline date.
--Keep in mind that e-APPLICATIONS is not operational 24 hours a day, 7 
days a week. Click on ``Hours of Web Site Operation'' for specific 
hours of access during the week.
--You will have access to the e-APPLICATION Help Desk for technical 
support: 1 (888) 336-8930 (TTY: 1-[866] 697-2696, local [202] 401-
8363). The Help Desk hours of operation are limited to 8 a.m.-6 p.m. 
EST Monday through Friday.

    You must submit all documents electronically, including the 
Application for Federal Education Assistance (ED424), Budget 
Information--Non-Construction Programs (ED524), and assurances, 
certifications, and appendices, as appropriate.

--After you electronically submit your application, you will receive an 
acknowledgement, which will include a PR/Award number (an identifying 
number unique to your application).
--Within three (3) working days after submitting your electronic 
application, fax a signed copy of the Application for Federal Education 
Assistance (ED424) to the Application Control Center after following 
these steps: (1) Print the ED424 from the e-Application system. (2) The 
institution's Authorizing Representative must sign this form. (3) Place 
the PR/Award number in the upper right hand corner of the hard copy 
signature page of the ED424. (4) Fax the signed ED424 to the 
Application Control Center at (202) 260-1349.
--The Department may request that you give us original signatures on 
all other forms at a later date.

Closing Date Extension in Case of System Unavailability

    If you are prevented from submitting an application on the closing 
date because the e-APPLICATION system is unavailable, we will grant you 
an extension of one (1) business day in order to transmit your 
application electronically, by mail, or by hand delivery.
    For us to grant this extension:
    (1) You must be a registered user of e-APPLICATION and have 
initiated an e-APPLICATION for this competition; and
    (2) (a) The e-APPLICATION system must be unavailable for 60 minutes 
or more between the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. EST, on the 
deadline date; or
    (b) The e-APPLICATION system must be unavailable for any period of 
time during the last hours of operation (that is, for any period of 
time between 3:30 and 4:30 p.m. EST) on the deadline date. The 
Department must acknowledge and confirm these periods of unavailability 
before granting you an extension. To request this extension, you must 
contact the e-Grants Help Desk at 1 (888) 336-8930.
    You may access the electronic grant application for CFDA No. 84.341 

[[Page 33323]]

    Page Limit: The application narrative (Part VI of the application) 
is where you, the applicant, address the selection criteria that 
reviewers use to evaluate your application. You must limit Part VI to 
the equivalent of no more than 25 pages, using the following standards:
    [sbull] A ``page'' is 8.5'' x 11'' on one side only, with 1'' 
margins on the top, bottom, and both sides.
    [sbull] Double space (no more than three lines per vertical inch) 
all text in the application narrative, including titles, headings, 
footnotes, quotations, references, and captions, as well as all text in 
charts, tables, figures, and graphs.
    [sbull] Use a font that is either 12-point or larger or no smaller 
than 10 pitch (characters per inch).
    In addition, you must limit Part VII (budget narrative) to four (4) 
pages and Part X (Appendices) to 15 pages, using the aforementioned 
standards. We will reject your application if you:
    [sbull] You apply these standards and exceed the page limit; or
    [sbull] You apply other standards and exceed the equivalent of the 
page limit.
    Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: June 30, 2003.
    Deadline for Intergovernmental Review: August 29, 2003.
    Estimated Available Funds: $24,318,750. Note: Under 34 CFR 
75.225(c)(1), the Department will conduct a separate competition for an 
estimated $8,106,250 in additional available funds. Only a ``novice 
applicant,'' as that term is defined in 34 CFR 75.225(a-b), may apply 
for funds in that competition.
    Range of Awards: $300,000-$500,000.
    In previous grant competitions, applicants have routinely requested 
more money than the above award ranges dictate. As a result, plans 
submitted to the Department have included any number of activities that 
could only be made possible if an applicant received a funding amount 
much higher than intended in the award range. Based on this experience, 
the Department will fund only those applications that correctly request 
funds within the award range specified in this notice. Therefore, 
applicants who request more than $500,000 will be declared ineligible 
and will not receive funding.

    Note: The size of awards will be based on a number of factors. 
These factors will include the scope, quality, and comprehensiveness 
of the proposed program, and the recommended range of awards 
indicated above.

    Matching Requirement: Pursuant to section 5512(c) of ESEA, as 
amended by NCLB, Federal funds may not pay for more than 50 percent of 
total project costs. In order to apply for and receive a grant award 
under this competition, each applicant must furnish from nonfederal 
sources at last 50 percent of its total project costs. Applicants may 
satisfy this requirement in cash or in kind, fairly evaluated, 
including services.

    Note: The U.S. Department of Education is not bound by any 
estimates in this notice.

    Project Period: 12 months.
    Applicable Regulations: (a) The Education Department General 
Administrative Regulations (EDGAR) in 34 CFR parts 75, 77, 79, 80, 81, 
82, 85, 86, 97, 98 and 99 and (b) the regulations in the notice of 
final priorities, application requirements, and selection criteria for 
FY 2003 as published elsewhere in this issue of the Federal Register.
    Priorities: This competition gives absolute and competitive 
priorities to applicants that meet the conditions outlined in the 
Notice of Final Priorities for this program, which is published 
elsewhere in this issue of the Federal Register.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:  If you need further assistance and 
need to speak with someone in the CTC program, you may contact Gisela 
Harkin by phone at (202) 205-4238, by mail at 330 C Street, SW., Room 
4324, Washington, DC 20202, or via e-mail at    
Individuals who use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD) 
may call the Federal Information Relay Service (FIRS) at 1-800-877-
8339. Individuals with disabilities may obtain this notice in an 
alternative format (e.g., Braille, large print, audiotape, or computer 
diskette) on request to one of the contact persons listed in the 
preceding paragraph.

Electronic Access to This Document

    You may view this document, as well as all other Department of 
Education documents published in the Federal Register, in text or Adobe 
Portable Document Format (PDF) on the Internet at the following site:
    To use PDF you must have Adobe Acrobat Reader, which is available 
free at this site. If you have any questions about using PDF, call the 
U.S. Government Printing Office (GPO); toll free, at 1-888-293-6498; or 
in the Washington, DC, area at (202) 512-1530.

    Note: The official version of this document is the document 
published in the Federal Register. Free Internet access to the 
official edition of the Federal Register and the Code of Federal 
Regulations is available on GPO Access at:

Program Authority:

     20 U.S.C. 7263-7263b.

    Dated: May 29, 2003.
Carol D'Amico,
Assistant Secretary for Vocational and Adult Education.
[FR Doc. 03-13835 Filed 6-2-03; 8:45 am]