FR Doc E6-18185
[Federal Register: October 31, 2006 (Volume 71, Number 210)]
[Notices]               
[Page 64080-64084]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
[DOCID:fr31oc06-125]                         

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DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION

 
Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services; Overview 
Information; National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation 
Research (NIDRR)--Disability Rehabilitation Research Projects (DRRPs)--
Vocational Rehabilitation (VR): Transition Services That Lead to 
Competitive Employment Outcomes for Transition-Age Individuals With 
Blindness or Other Visual Impairments

    Notice inviting applications for new awards for fiscal year (FY) 
2007.

Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA)

    Number: 84.133A-4.
    Dates: Applications Available: October 31, 2006. Deadline for 
Transmittal of Applications: January 18, 2007.
    Date of Pre-Application Meeting: November 30, 2006.
    Eligible Applicants: States; public or private agencies, including 
for-profit agencies; public or private organizations, including for-
profit organizations; institutions of higher education (IHEs); and 
Indian tribes and tribal organizations.
    Estimated Available Funds: $450,000. The Administration has 
requested $106,705,000 for the National Institute on Disability and 
Rehabilitation Research program, of which we intend to use an estimated 
$450,000 for the Transition Services that Lead to Competitive 
Employment Outcomes for Transition-Age Individuals With Blindness or 
Other Visual Impairments competition. The actual level of funding, if 
any, depends on final congressional action. However, we are inviting 
applications to allow enough time to complete the grant process if 
Congress appropriates funds for this program.
    Estimated Average Size of Awards: $450,000.
    Maximum Award: We will reject any application that proposes a 
budget exceeding $450,000 for a single budget period of 12 months. The 
Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services 
may change the maximum amount through a notice published in the Federal 
Register.

    Note: The maximum amount includes direct and indirect costs.

    Estimated Number of Awards: 1.

    Note: The Department is not bound by any estimates in this 
notice.

    Project Period: Up to 36 months.

Full Text of Announcement

I. Funding Opportunity Description

    Purpose of Program: The purpose of the DRRP program is to plan and 
conduct research, demonstration projects, training, and related 
activities to develop methods, procedures, and rehabilitation 
technology that maximize the full inclusion and integration into 
society, employment, independent living, family support, and economic 
and social self-sufficiency of individuals with disabilities, 
especially individuals with the most severe disabilities, and to 
improve the effectiveness of services authorized under the 
Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended. DRRPs carry out one or more of 
the following types of activities, as specified and defined in 34 CFR 
350.13 through 350.19: research, development, demonstration, training, 
dissemination, utilization, and technical assistance.
    An applicant for assistance under this program must demonstrate in 
its application how it will address, in whole or in part, the needs of 
individuals with disabilities from minority backgrounds (34 CFR 
350.40(a)).
    The approaches an applicant may take to meet this requirement are 
found in 34 CFR 350.40(b).
    Additional information on the DRRP program can be found at: http://www.ed.gov/rschstat/research/pubs/res-program.html#DRRP
.

    Priorities: NIDRR has established two priorities for this 
competition. The General DRRP Requirements priority is from the notice 
of final priorities for the Disability and Rehabilitation Research 
Projects and Centers program, published in the Federal Register on 
April 28, 2006 (71 FR 25472). The Vocational Rehabilitation (VR): 
Transition Services that Lead to Competitive Employment Outcomes for 
Transition-Age Individuals with Blindness or Other Visual Impairments 
priority is from the notice of final priority for the Disability and 
Rehabilitation Research Projects and Centers program, published 
elsewhere in this issue of the Federal Register.
    Absolute Priorities: For FY 2007, these priorities are absolute 
priorities. Under 34 CFR 75.105(c)(3) we consider only applications 
that meet these priorities.
    These priorities are:
    General Disability and Rehabilitation Research Projects (DRRP) 
Requirements and Vocational Rehabilitation (VR): Transition Services 
that Lead to Competitive Employment Outcomes for Transition-Age 
Individuals with Blindness or Other Visual Impairments.

    Program Authority: 29 U.S.C. 762(g) and 764(a).

    Applicable Regulations: (a) The Education Department General 
Administrative Regulations (EDGAR) in 34 CFR parts 74, 75, 77, 80, 81, 
82, 84, 85, 86, and 97. (b) The regulations for this program in 34 CFR 
part 350. (c) The notice of final priorities for the Disability and 
Rehabilitation Research Projects and Centers program, published in the 
Federal Register on April 28, 2006 (71 FR 25472). (d) The notice of 
final priorities for the Disability and Rehabilitation Research 
Projects and Centers program, published elsewhere in this issue of the 
Federal Register.

    Note: The regulations in 34 CFR part 86 apply to IHEs only.

II. Award Information

    Type of Award: Discretionary grants.
    Estimated Available Funds: $450,000. The Administration has 
requested $106,705,000 for the National Institute on Disability and 
Rehabilitation Research program, of which we intend to use an estimated 
$450,000 for the Transition Services that Lead to Competitive 
Employment Outcomes for Transition-Age Individuals With Blindness or 
Other Visual Impairments competition. The actual level of funding, if 
any, depends on final congressional action. However, we are inviting 
applications to allow enough time to complete the grant process if 
Congress appropriates funds for this program.
    Estimated Average Size of Awards: $450,000.
    Maximum Award: We will reject any application that proposes a 
budget

[[Page 64081]]

exceeding $450,000 for a single budget period of 12 months. The 
Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services 
may change the maximum amount through a notice published in the Federal 
Register.

    Note: The maximum amount includes direct and indirect costs.

    Estimated Number of Awards: 1.

    Note: The Department is not bound by any estimates in this 
notice.

    Project Period: Up to 36 months.

III. Eligibility Information

    1. Eligible Applicants: States; public or private agencies, 
including for-profit agencies; public or private organizations, 
including for-profit organizations; IHEs; and Indian tribes and tribal 
organizations.
    2. Cost Sharing or Matching: Cost sharing is required and will be 
negotiated at the time of the grant award.

IV. Application and Submission Information

    1. Address to Request Application Package: You may obtain an 
application package via Internet or from the Education Publications 
Center (ED Pubs). To obtain a copy via Internet use the following 
address: http://www.ed.gov/fund/grant/apply/grantapps/index.html.

    To obtain a copy from ED Pubs, write or call the following: 
Education Publications Center, P.O. Box 1398, Jessup, MD 20794-1398. 
Telephone (toll free): 1-877-433-7827. FAX: (301) 470-1244. If you use 
a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD), you may call (toll 
free): 1-877-576-7734.
    You may also contact ED Pubs at its Web site: http://www.ed.gov/pubs/edpubs.html
 or you may contact ED Pubs at its e-mail address: edpubs@inet.ed.gov.

    If you request an application from ED Pubs, be sure to identify 
this competition as follows: CFDA Number 84.133A-4. Individuals with 
disabilities may obtain a copy of the application package in an 
alternative format (e.g., Braille, large print, audiotape, or computer 
diskette) by contacting the program contact person listed under FOR 
FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT in section VII of this notice.
    2. Content and Form of Application Submission: Requirements 
concerning the content of an application, together with the forms you 
must submit, are in the application package for this competition.
    Page Limit: The application narrative (Part III of the application) 
is where you, the applicant, address the selection criteria that 
reviewers use to evaluate your application. We recommend that you limit 
Part III to the equivalent of no more than 125 pages, using the 
following standards:
     A ``page'' is 8.5'' x 11'', on one side only, with 1'' 
margins at the top, bottom, and both sides.
     Double space (no more than three lines per vertical inch) 
all text in the application narrative. Single spacing may be used for 
titles, headings, footnotes, quotations, references, and captions, as 
well as all text in charts, tables, figures, and graphs.
     Use a font that is either 12 point or larger or no smaller 
than 10 pitch (characters per inch).
    The suggested page limit does not apply to Part I, the cover sheet; 
Part II, the budget section; Part IV, the assurances and 
certifications; or the one-page abstract, the resumes, the 
bibliography, or the letters of support. However, you must include all 
of the application narrative in Part III.
    The application package will provide instructions for completing 
all components to be included in the application. Each application must 
include a cover sheet (Standard Form 424; budget requirements (ED Form 
524) and a budget narrative justification; other required forms; an 
abstract, Human Subjects narrative, Part III narrative; resumes of 
staff; and other related materials, if applicable.
    3. Submission Dates and Times:
    Applications Available: October 31, 2006.
    Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: January 18, 2007.
    Pre-Application Meeting: Interested parties are invited to 
participate in a pre-application meeting to discuss the priorities and 
to receive information and technical assistance through individual 
consultation. The pre-application meeting will be held on November 30, 
2006. Interested parties may participate in this meeting by conference 
call with NIDRR staff from the Office of Special Education and 
Rehabilitative Services between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m., Washington, DC 
time. On the same day, NIDRR staff also will be available from 2 p.m. 
to 4 p.m., by telephone, to provide information and technical 
assistance through individual consultation. For further information or 
to make arrangements to participate on the conference call or for an 
individual consultation, contact Donna Nangle, U.S. Department of 
Education, Potomac Center Plaza, room 6030, 550 12th Street, SW., 
Washington, DC 20202. Telephone: (202) 245-7462 or by e-mail: 
Lynn.medley@ed.gov.

    Applications for grants under this competition may be submitted 
electronically using the Grants.gov Apply site (Grants.gov), or in 
paper format by mail or hand delivery.
    For information (including dates and times) about how to submit 
your application electronically, or by mail or hand delivery, please 
refer to section IV. 6. Other Submission Requirements in this notice.
    We do not consider an application that does not comply with the 
deadline requirements.
    4. Intergovernmental Review: This program is not subject to 
Executive Order 12372 and the regulations in 34 CFR part 79.
    5. Funding Restrictions: We reference regulations outlining funding 
restrictions in the Applicable Regulations section of this notice.
    6. Other Submission Requirements: Applications for grants under 
this competition may be submitted electronically or in paper format by 
mail or hand delivery.
    a. Electronic Submission of Applications.
    We have been accepting applications electronically through the 
Department's e-Application system since FY 2000. In order to expand on 
those efforts and comply with the President's Management Agenda, we are 
continuing to participate as a partner in the new government-wide 
Grants.gov Apply site in FY 2007. Disability Rehabilitation Research 
Projects-CFDA Number 84.133A-4 is one of the programs included in this 
project. We request your participation in Grants.gov.
    If you choose to submit your application electronically, you must 
use the Grants.gov Apply site at: http://www.Grants.gov. Through this 

site, you will be able to download a copy of the application package, 
complete it offline, and then upload and submit your application. You 
may not e-mail an electronic copy of a grant application to us.
    You may access the electronic grant application for Disability 
Rehabilitation Research Projects at: http://www.grants.gov. You must 

search for the downloadable application package for this program by the 
CFDA number. Do not include the CFDA number's alpha suffix in your 
search.
    Please note the following:
     Your participation in Grants.gov is voluntary.
     When you enter the Grants.gov site, you will find 
information about submitting an application electronically through the 
site, as well as the hours of operation.

[[Page 64082]]

     Applications received by Grants.gov are time and date 
stamped. Your application must be fully uploaded and submitted, and 
must be date/time stamped by the Grants.gov system no later than 4:30 
p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date. Except as 
otherwise noted in this section, we will not consider your application 
if it is date/time stamped by the Grants.gov system later than 4:30 
p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date. When we 
retrieve your application from Grants.gov, we will notify you if we are 
rejecting your application because it was date/time stamped by the 
Grants.gov system after 4:30 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the 
application deadline date.
     The amount of time it can take to upload an application 
will vary depending on a variety of factors including the size of the 
application and the speed of your Internet connection. Therefore, we 
strongly recommend that you do not wait until the application deadline 
date to begin the application process through Grants.gov.
     You should review and follow the Education Submission 
Procedures for submitting an application through Grants.gov that are 
included in the application package for this competition to ensure that 
you submit your application in a timely manner to the Grants.gov 
system. You can also find the Education Submission Procedures 
pertaining to Grants.gov at http://e-Grants.ed.gov/help/GrantsgovSubmissionProcedures.pdf
.

     To submit your application via Grants.gov, you must 
complete all of the steps in the Grants.gov registration process (see 
http://www.grants.gov/applicants/get_registered.jsp). These steps 

include (1) registering your organization, (2) registering yourself as 
an Authorized Organization Representative (AOR), and (3) getting 
authorized as an AOR by your organization. Details on these steps are 
outlined in the Grants.gov 3-Step Registration Guide (see http://www.grants.gov/section910/Grants.govRegistrationBrochure.pdf
). You also 

must provide on your application the same D-U-N-S Number used with this 
registration. Please note that the registration process may take five 
or more business days to complete, and you must have completed all 
registration steps to allow you to successfully submit an application 
via Grants.gov.
     You will not receive additional point value because you 
submit your application in electronic format, nor will we penalize you 
if you submit your application in paper format.
     If you submit your application electronically you must 
submit all documents electronically, including the following forms: 
Application for Federal Assistance (SF 424), the Department of 
Education Supplemental Information for SF 424, Budget Information--Non-
Construction Programs (ED 524), and all necessary assurances and 
certifications. Please note that two of these forms--the SF 424 and the 
Department of Education Supplemental Information for SF 424--have 
replaced the ED 424 (Application for Federal Education Assistance). You 
must attach any narrative sections of your application as files in a 
.DOC (document), .RTF (rich text), or .PDF (Portable Document) format. 
If you upload a file type other than the three file types specified 
above or submit a password protected file, we will not review that 
material.
     Your electronic application must comply with any page 
limit requirements described in this notice.
     After you electronically submit your application, you will 
receive an automatic acknowledgment from Grants.gov that contains a 
Grants.gov tracking number. The Department will retrieve your 
application from Grants.gov and send you a second confirmation by e-
mail that will include a PR/Award number (an ED-specified identifying 
number unique to your application).
     We may request that you provide us original signatures on 
forms at a later date.

Application Deadline Date Extension in Case of System Unavailability

    If you are prevented from electronically submitting your 
application on the application deadline date because of technical 
problems with the Grants.gov system, we will grant you an extension 
until 4:30 p.m., Washington, DC time, the following business day to 
enable you to transmit your application electronically, or by hand 
delivery. You also may mail your application by following the mailing 
instructions as described elsewhere in this notice. If you submit an 
application after 4:30 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the deadline date, 
please contact the person listed elsewhere in this notice under FOR 
FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT, and provide an explanation of the 
technical problem you experienced with Grants.gov, along with the 
Grants.gov Support Desk Case Number (if available). We will accept your 
application if we can confirm that a technical problem occurred with 
the Grants.gov system and that that problem affected your ability to 
submit your application by 4:30 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the 
application deadline date. The Department will contact you after a 
determination is made on whether your application will be accepted.

    Note: Extensions referred to in this section apply only to the 
unavailability of or technical problems with the Grants.gov system. 
We will not grant you an extension if you failed to fully register 
to submit your application to Grants.gov before the deadline date 
and time or if the technical problem you experienced is unrelated to 
the Grants.gov system.

    b. Submission of Paper Applications by Mail.
    If you submit your application in paper format by mail (through the 
U.S. Postal Service or a commercial carrier), you must mail the 
original and two copies of your application, on or before the 
application deadline date, to the Department at the applicable 
following address:

By mail through the U.S. Postal Service: U.S. Department of Education, 
Application Control Center, Attention: (CFDA Number 84.133A-4), 400 
Maryland Avenue, SW., Washington, DC 20202-4260.

or

By mail through a commercial carrier: U.S. Department of Education, 
Application Control Center--Stop 4260, Attention: (CFDA Number 84.133A-
4), 7100 Old Landover Road, Landover, MD 20785-1506.

    Regardless of which address you use, you must show proof of mailing 
consisting of one of the following:
    (1) A legibly dated U.S. Postal Service postmark,
    (2) A legible mail receipt with the date of mailing stamped by the 
U.S. Postal Service,
    (3) A dated shipping label, invoice, or receipt from a commercial 
carrier, or
    (4) Any other proof of mailing acceptable to the Secretary of the 
U.S. Department of Education.
    If you mail your application through the U.S. Postal Service, we do 
not accept either of the following as proof of mailing:
    (1) A private metered postmark, or
    (2) A mail receipt that is not dated by the U.S. Postal Service.
    If your application is postmarked after the application deadline 
date, we will not consider your application.

    Note: The U.S. Postal Service does not uniformly provide a dated 
postmark. Before relying on this method, you should check with your 
local post office.

    c. Submission of Paper Applications by Hand Delivery. 

[[Page 64083]]

    If you submit your application in paper format by hand delivery, 
you (or a courier service) must deliver the original and two copies of 
your application by hand, on or before the application deadline date, 
to the Department at the following address: U.S. Department of 
Education, Application Control Center, Attention: (CFDA Number 84.133A-
4), 550 12th Street, SW., Room 7041, Potomac Center Plaza, Washington, 
DC 20202-4260.
    The Application Control Center accepts hand deliveries daily 
between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Washington, DC time, except Saturdays, 
Sundays, and Federal holidays.

    Note for Mail or Hand Delivery of Paper Applications: If you 
mail or hand deliver your application to the Department:
    (1) You must indicate on the envelope and--if not provided by 
the Department--in Item 11 of the SF 424 the CFDA number--and suffix 
letter, if any--of the competition under which you are submitting 
your application.
    (2) The Application Control Center will mail a grant application 
receipt acknowledgment to you. If you do not receive the grant 
application receipt acknowledgment within 15 business days from the 
application deadline date, you should call the U.S. Department of 
Education Application Control Center at (202) 245-6288.

V. Application Review Information

    Selection Criteria: The selection criteria for this competition are 
from 34 CFR 75.210 of EDGAR and 34 CFR 350.54 and are listed in the 
application package.
    The Secretary is interested in hypothesis-driven research and 
development projects. To address this interest it is expected that 
applicants will articulate goals, objectives, and expected outcomes for 
the proposed research and development activities. It is critical that 
proposals describe expected public benefits, especially benefits for 
individuals with disabilities, and propose projects that are optimally 
designed to demonstrate outcomes that are consistent with the proposed 
goals. Applicants are encouraged to include information describing how 
they will measure outcomes, including the indicators that will 
represent the end-result, the mechanisms that will be used to evaluate 
outcomes associated with specific problems or issues, and how the 
proposed activities will support new intervention approaches and 
strategies, including a discussion of measures of effectiveness. 
Submission of this information is voluntary except where required by 
the selection criteria listed in the application package.

VI. Award Administration Information

    1. Award Notices: If your application is successful, we notify your 
U.S. Representative and U.S. Senators and send you a Grant Award 
Notification (GAN). We may also notify you informally.
    If your application is not evaluated or not selected for funding, 
we notify you.
    2. Administrative and National Policy Requirements: We identify 
administrative and national policy requirements in the application 
package and reference these and other requirements in the Applicable 
Regulations section of this notice.
    We reference the regulations outlining the terms and conditions of 
an award in the Applicable Regulations section of this notice and 
include these and other specific conditions in the GAN. The GAN also 
incorporates your approved application as part of your binding 
commitments under the grant.
    3. Reporting: At the end of your project period, you must submit a 
final performance report, including financial information, as directed 
by the Secretary. If you receive a multi-year award, you must submit an 
annual performance report that provides the most current performance 
and financial expenditure information as specified by the Secretary in 
34 CFR 75.118.

    Note: NIDRR will provide information by letter to grantees on 
how and when to submit the report.

    4. Performance Measures: To evaluate the overall success of its 
research program, NIDRR assesses the quality of its funded projects 
through review of grantee performance and products. Each year, NIDRR 
examines, through expert review, a portion of its grantees to 
determine:
     The percentage of newly awarded NIDRR projects that are 
multi-site, collaborative, controlled studies of interventions and 
programs.
     The number of accomplishments (e.g., new or improved 
tools, methods, discoveries, standards, interventions, programs, or 
devices) developed or tested with NIDRR funding that have been judged 
by expert panels to be of high quality and to advance the field.
     The percentage of grantee research and development that 
has appropriate study design, meets rigorous standards of scientific 
and/or engineering methods, and builds on and contributes to knowledge 
in the field.
     The average number of publications per award based on 
NIDRR-funded research and development activities in refereed journals.
     The percentage of new grants that include studies funded 
by NIDRR that assess the effectiveness of interventions, programs, and 
devices using rigorous and appropriate methods.
    NIDRR uses information submitted by grantees as part of their 
Annual Performance Reports (APRs) for these reviews. NIDRR also 
determines, using information submitted as part of the APR, the number 
of publications in refereed journals that are based on NIDRR-funded 
research and development activities.
    Department of Education program performance reports, which include 
information on NIDRR programs, are available on the Department's Web 
site: http://www.ed.gov/about/offices/list/opepd/sas/index.html.

    Updates on the Government Performance and Results Act of 1993 
(GPRA) indicators, revisions and methods appear on the NIDRR Program 
Review Web site: http://www.neweditions.net/pr/commonfiles/pmconcepts.htm
.

    Grantees should consult these sites, on a regular basis, to obtain 
details and explanations on how NIDRR programs contribute to the 
advancement of the Department's long-term and annual performance goals.

VII. Agency Contact

    For Further Information Contact: Donna Nangle, U.S. Department of 
Education, 400 Maryland Avenue, SW., room 6030, Potomac Center Plaza, 
Washington, DC 20202. Telephone: (202) 245-7462 or by e-mail: 
donna.nangle@ed.gov.

    If you use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD), you may 
call the TDD number at (202) 245-7317 or the Federal Relay Service 
(FRS) at 1-800-877-8339.
    Individuals with disabilities may obtain this document in an 
alternative format (e.g., Braille, large print, audiotape, or computer 
diskette) on request to the program contact person listed in this 
section.

VIII. Other Information

    Electronic Access to This Document: You may view this document, as 
well as all other documents of this Department published in the Federal 
Register, in text or Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF) on the 
Internet at the following site: http://www.ed.gov/news/fedregister.

    To use PDF you must have Adobe Acrobat Reader, which is available 
free at this site. If you have 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.


[[Page 64084]]


    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: http://www.gpoaccess.gov/nara/index.html
.



    Dated: October 24, 2006.
John H. Hager,
Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services.
 [FR Doc. E6-18185 Filed 10-30-06; 8:45 am]

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