Appalachian Regional Commission
Pre-Application Solicitation

Area Development Program & Access Road Program

  1. Contact NEPA for an inital conversation about your potential project before beginning your pre-application to ensure the project will be competitive.
  2. Check this timeline to make sure your organization can meet the required deadlines.
  3. Review the ARC 2016-2020 Strategic Plan, the PA Area Development Plan 2015-2018, Appalachian Regional Commission Program Guidelines and the PA FY17 Strategy Statement to ensure your project matches the most current goals and strategies at the federal and state levels.
  4. Currently, all of the counties NEPA serves are designated as transitional, meaning the Area Development grants require a 50% match to leverage the 50% grant funds, and while the Access Road Program no longer requires a match, it is highly encouraged.
  5. This is a reimbursement grant.  You cannot make purchases prior to receiving a grant contract from ARC. (This includes the purchase of equipment or services that will be used for match.)  Once you execute the contract, you will submit invoices after each 120-day period.  Your contract period will likely start August, September or October 1st.
  6. ARC is federal agency and funds from their grant are federally sourced. Federal wage rates (Davis Bacon Act) will be required for grant and matching funds.
  7. For project budgets: Supplies should include items that are less than $5,000 and Equipment should include items that are over $5,000.
  8. Higher Education Projects:
    1. Please include the job placement rate of graduates for Appalachia and non-Appalachia counties. ARC and DCED typically wish to see that 80% of graduates stay within Appalachia. If your number is not this high, please provide some justification based on job centers/clusters.
    2. ARC central office takes notices of current Community College of Appalachia members.
  9. Any construction project (Area Development) requires a federal cognizant agency, often referred to as a BFA (Basic Federal Agency), as a partner (USDA, Army Corp of Engineers, US DOT FHWA, EDA).
  10. All Local Access Road applications must address the following points:
    1. Projects must be coordinated with PennDOT and the NEPA Alliance or Lackawanna-Luzerne Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPOs) to be added to the Transportation Improvement Program (TIP).
    2. List PennDOT as the Basic Agency in the Executive Summary.
    3. Note in the project description whether the road is owned by the county or local municipality. If the property has not been transferred to a local government entity, include a letter of intent, including the planned date of transfer.
    4. Clarify in the project descriptions whether the cost is for “construction only” or “design and construction”. If construction only, note if design is complete and if design is in conformity with PennDOT standards. Be sure to include date (or anticipated date) for design completion.
    5. Describe the length of the access road constructed as part of the project, in miles or decimals of miles (not linear feet). Include the current road width, if applicable, as compared to width of completed project as well as list other enhancements to the project, such as bus stops, sidewalks, utility relocation, signalization etc.  Note this change with appropriate details in the explanation and financial sections. Priority is generally given to projects which create, expand or enhance access to help accommodate or attract new development. Maintenance only projects will not be considered.
    6. Match is no longer required but highly encouraged.
    7. If you are using Liquid Fuel Funds as the match, please label them as “State” funds.
    8. List current employers and number of employees that are tenants of the road section that is being repaired or built.
    9. If the road is new, list the number and size (acres) of available lots. Are there any commitments for sale/lease? Is there other infrastructure (sewer, water, natural gas, broadband) in place?
  11. If you are selected for a full application, you must have the match committed. Before beginning a pre-app, please make sure your matching funds can be committed by that time.
  12. You must have outcomes and outputs that match ARC’s guidelines for reporting to Congress; however, you may also include additional outcomes and outputs that show the full impact of the program or project.  Please review ARC’s guidance for performance measures here.
  13. After these steps, use the pre-application template here to guide the development of your proposal. Pre-applications should be submitted via email to kbauman@nepa-alliance.org and aaardweg@nepa-alliance.org in MS Word (not PDF) by May 10 at 5pm.  Submit the documents in MS Word so we (NEPA & DCED) can make minor edits to strengthen the pre-applications. Use ARC Pre App (and then the name of your project) to title the document. For example: ARC Pre App NEPA Alliance ARC Program.
  14. Below is a listing of example pre-applications to help clarify the information requested under each section. Since these examples are from previous years and may have different requirements, it is in your best interest to use the downloadable blank pre-application document (linked above) as the template to complete your pre-application.
    a. Local Access Road Pre-Application (Luzerne County)
    b. Area Development Pre-Application (Allied Services Foundation)
    c. Area Development Pre-Application (Johnson College)
    d. Area Development Pre-Application (NeighborWorks Northeastern Pennsylvania)

If you have any questions, please contact:

Athena Aardweg
Community Services Manager
aaardweg@nepa-alliance.org – 570-655-5581 ext. 251

Kurt Bauman
Vice President, Community & Economic Development Services
kbauman@nepa-alliance.org – 570-655-5581 ext. 237

 
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