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PCCD Funding Announcement Q&A

Q&A text
collapse Funding Announcement Title Drug Court Initiatives ‎(2)

Question: Are Juvenile Treatment Courts eligible to apply for this funding? 

Answer: Yes

collapse Funding Announcement Title Naloxone for First Responders ‎(3)

Question: Is this application process only for those who wish to become a Centralized Coordinating Entity (CCE)?


Answer: Yes, this application process is only available to those who wish to be the CCE for their county or region. If you are seeking to get Naloxone as a first responder, but are not seeking to become the CCE, you will need to communicate directly with the CCE in your community.

Question: I am a fire fighter or EMT and am included in the list of Eligible First Responders (See page 5 of the Application Guidelines) and am in need of Naloxone – Can I apply directly?

Answer: No. Only Eligible Centralized Coordinating Entities (CCEs) can apply. Eligible CCEs are County Commissioners, Single County Authorities, District Attorney’s Offices, Local Health Offices, Local Medical Directors and Emergency Medical Service agencies.
Once a CCE is selected, it will be listed on PCCDs website. An eligible first responder (i.e. Constable, Fire Fighter, EMT, etc.) would need to communicate directly with the CCE in their community.
collapse Funding Announcement Title SAEDR Category 1 ‎(15)

Question: According to the PCCD’s open funding announcements website, the amount announced for Category 1 is $1,416,562; however, the Category 1 solicitation states that the funding available is $1.4 million.   Which are the correct amounts?

Answer: The amounts in the funding announcement documents were rounded to the nearest dollar.  Depending upon the number of viable applications received (after the review/score process), PCCD may award up to the maximum amounts available under each category/solicitation.

Question: Are we eligible to apply for one grant each in Category 1 if one application is for adults and one is juveniles? 

Answer: Eligible applicants may submit one application under the 2017 Substance Abuse Education (SAEDR) Category One, and one application under the 2017 OJJDP SAEDR Research-Based for 2018 funding opportunities.

Question:  On the approval checklist page it asks the following question: Are the Privacy Certificates as to Confidentiality of Identifiable Research and Statistical Data attached? Can you please provide more information on what you are looking for and where to attach it (as there is no attachment feature on this page)?

Answer: Attachments are to be entered into the Required Attachment under Sections Tab. The following link details the requirements for the Privacy Certificates as to Confidentiality of Identifiable Research and Statistical Data: Privacy Certificates and Confidentiality Requirements (PDF).

Question: If we currently have funding through SAEDR does that make us ineligible to apply this year?

Answer: An application may be submitted even if an organization currently receives funding through SAEDR.

Question: We do not have a federally negotiated indirect cost rate, may we use the de minimus dindirect cost rate? 

Answer: If your organization has never had a federally approved indirect cost rate, the de minimis rate would be an allowable option to recover indirect costs.  Please review the Indirect Costs section of PCCD Applicant's Manual.

Question: The current SAEDER Category 1 solicitation indicates it is to serve families and a separate announcement will be released for projects related to the needs of juveniles. When do you anticipate the announcement specific to juveniles to be made?

Answer: PCCD’s Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention will be releasing a SAEDR Category One funding announcement for projects related to the needs of juveniles in the near future. 

Question: There are performance indicators in the application established by PCCD. Do these need to be filled out with the grant application or is this only for post award? 

Answer: The Performance indicators set by PCCD are required to be answered with target values and submitted with the application.  Awarded applications must report quarterly on the progress of these indicators.  Program specific indicators can also be added by applicant.
collapse Funding Announcement Title SAEDR Category 2 and 3 ‎(5)

Question: According to the PCCD’s open funding announcements website,  the amount announced for Category 2 and 3 is $1,445,385; however, the Category 2 and 3 solicitation states that the funding available is $1.4 million, and in another spot of the solicitation it says that “up to” $1.4 million is available. Which are the correct amounts?

Answer: The amounts in the funding announcement documents were rounded to the nearest dollar.  Depending upon the number of viable applications received (after the review/score process), PCCD may award up to the maximum amounts available under each category/solicitation.

Question: The funding announcement states that the applicant agency must have as its purpose the reduction of substance use and must attach or provide a link: a mission statement, by-laws, strategic plan, etc. in Egrants, as verification process.   Are all of these items required or can an agency provide 1 of the items listed?

Answer: A nonprofit organization is responsible for attaching or providing a link to one or more of the following into Egrants as verification: a mission statement, by-laws, strategic plan, or other documentation that indicates that the applicant meets the eligibility requirement.

Question: Can a nonprofit apply for grants in both categories simultaneously?

Answer: Yes, a nonprofit organization may submit one application under each of the two categories. 
collapse Funding Announcement Title SAEDR Category 3 ‎(3)

Question: Can you operationally define what is meant by “comprehensive drug-free workplace program”?

Answer: Due to the competitive nature of this funding opportunity, staff may not provide program specific guidance on how to respond to any section of the application. 
Q&A text
collapse Funding Announcement Title Emerging CACs and MDITs - 2017 ‎(1)

Question: If a MDIT received funding from the Pennsylvania District Attorney’s Institute under the 2016-2017 MDIT/CAC Grant Program are they still eligible to apply for this funding?

Answer: Yes, you are eligible to apply under this solicitation.   ​

collapse Funding Announcement Title Endowment Act - Prevention ‎(60)

Question: The grant terms are three years for the pilot project.  In addition to the project coordinator, there is a budget opportunity for additional staff, either at the service providers to increase capacity to carry out the goals of this pilot, or/and for caseworkers at the county level. 

Do we have to include a sustainability plan when we apply, even though the budget is going to be reviewed/approved/planned by the applicant agency, PCCD, and CMSN, only after the application is submitted?
(Page 8, Bottom) It indicates that only after the goals are met will PCCD/CMSN discuss sustainability with a pilot county to keep meeting those goals…Does that mean funding could potentially continue?  The grant does not indicate whether future funding can be secured to support these positions after 3 years, or if funding is perhaps dependent on the results of the pilot? 
Answer: A sustainability plan is not required at this point in the process.  However, the trial was designed with opportunities for sustainability in mind. This means that we have considered potential sustainable sources of funding for the ongoing prevention effort in PA – including looking at potential funding opportunities from the Department of Human Services, local county budgets, and Department of Education funding.  At this point, we cannot guarantee that funding will be available after the three year project, but any awarded grantee will work with PCCD and CMSN on possible sustainability sources. 

Question: Will not having full endorsement and support from 70% of all superintendents before the June deadline disqualify an applicant?  Written approval from 70% of school district superintendents providing a support letter stating that they endorse and will allow the program to take place in all of 2nd grades within their district is unrealistic for several reasons.  One, counties with multiple districts may not be able to attain all of these letters before submission. For example, we have 13 districts. Two, superintendents are typically not the person within their respective districts who make this policy decision.  Typically, this goes to curriculum directors and/or Assistant Superintendents or Principals. 

Answer: We recognize acquiring the written support from superintendents is a tall order. The intent is to guarantee the buy in of stakeholders to guarantee the opportunity for intervention in the schools. Not having written approval from 70% of the school districts may not inherently disqualify an applicant. The applicant is advised to thoroughly describe the structure of the school districts, who makes policy decisions, and how the applicant will acquire the support of those districts for which there is not a written letter of support included in the application.

Question:  Again, under activities – is there a preferred formula to arrive at the 5% of adults receiving the Stewards of Children program.  (Do we use the county census?)

Answer: According to the Darkness to Light National office, the tipping point for shifting the culture around prevention. As part of the application, we are asking counties to quantify 5% of their adult population (this is the number of adults that will be targeted to receive Stewards of Children training). To arrive at 5% of the adult population in a community the applicant should refer to the county census.  

Question: We only have statistics of SA reports from the latter half of 2015, due to expunctions. We began an internal tracking mechanism in July 2015. Are we able to extrapolate using the information we have from July-December? Additionally, we do have more than the 200 reports needed in 2016.

Answer: In your application, you would need to describe the situation regarding your 2015 data and the internal tracking mechanism begun in July 2015.  Estimates through extrapolation are allowed, but reviewers will take that into consideration when scoring applications.

Question: Do 70% of districts need to be signed on at the time of application or is it that districts accounting for 70% of students need to be signed on at the time of application?

Answer: 70% of districts need to be signed on at the time of application. 

Question: Can Safe Touches be delivered in larger groups (e.g., assemblies) within the school, or does it have to be delivered at the classroom level?

Answer: To ensure fidelity to the model, Safe Touches must be implemented at the classroom level. 

Question: Is there any possibility the Commission would grant permission to arrange workshop opportunities for 2nd grade students and parents outside the school day? We see possibilities for how we might be able to have parents and students complete the workshop during the evening and perhaps coordinate this experience with other events that are more likely to bring parents and 2nd graders back to school for an evening session. We believe it to be likely that more parents would consent to the experience if they could participate with their children.

Answer: Parents are, of course, a critical element in the prevention of child sexual abuse. A large literature base, however, supports the importance of teaching children directly how to identify things that make them uncomfortable and what to do if this happens.  The fidelity model of the evidence-based Safe Touches program is a 50-minute workshop delivered directly to elementary age children using puppets in the classroom setting.  Therefore, implementation in the prevention pilot must follow the implementation of the fidelity model.  After attending the workshop, children are sent home with a workbook to be completed with the parents.  County Coordinators will be supported to organize the community-based training (Stewards of Children) at no cost for parents in districts thus the comprehensive strategy will simultaneously reach children and their parents with similar content that can be discussed within the family setting.  Optimally, these programs can be delivered in parallel.

Question: Better understanding the role of teachers in this pilot process and determining how we allot teacher training time in our already packed professional development calendar.

Answer: Teachers do not have an active role in the student workshop (i.e., they are not necessary in its direct implementation).  The teacher workshop is not a requirement of the Prevention Pilot, but merely an option offered to interested schools districts.  This teacher workshop informs teachers about the content and empowers teachers to understand their role in sexual abuse prevention (see Fact Sheet for more information).

Question: Needing access to the survey and obtaining board approval to administer it, in accordance with board policy.

Answer: As detailed in the FAQs, the survey is brief and an adaptation of the Children’s Knowledge of Abuse Questionnaire (CKAQ).  PSU and PCCD will assist each county in obtaining the required permissions and approvals to conduct research in the schools.  Researchers from PSU, in cooperation with the Safe Touches developer, selected 6 questions from the CKAQ and added 8 “filler questions” including 3 questions that may be of interest to school leadership about the children’s perceptions about school.
Questions (note this is not the final order of questions):
1.    You have to let grown-ups touch you whether you like it or not.
2.    You always have to keep secrets.
3.    You can trust your feelings about whether a touch is good or bad.
4.    It’s OK to say “no” and move away if someone touches you in a way you don’t like.
5.    Someone you know, even a relative, might want to touch your private parts in a way that feels confusing.
6.    A pat on the back from a teacher you like after you have done a good job at school is a safe touch
7.    Grape juice will always turn your teeth orange.
8.    It is a good idea to wear a coat in the winter.
9.    Cats are better than dogs.
10.  It is important to drink milk with every meal.
11.  My teacher clucks like a chicken when we learn math.
12.  I look forward to coming to school every day.
13.  I have good friends in my classroom.
14.  My school is a happy and safe place to be.
 
Tutty LM. The revised Children’s Knowledge of Abuse Questionnaire: development of a measure of children’s understanding of sexual abuse prevention concepts. Soc Work Res. 1995;19(2):112–120

Question: Primary among our concerns is our belief that the conversations that would be taking place with 2nd graders should be done in a setting with parents present (or at least providing them opportunity to be present).  Students and parents [would be] hearing the same message together, have the opportunity to talk with one another about what is being presented, and are able to interact with the clinicians to ask questions and seek additional information.

Answer: Parents are, of course, a critical element in the prevention of child sexual abuse.  A large literature base, however, supports the importance of teaching children directly how to identify things that make them uncomfortable and what to do if this happens.  The fidelity model of the evidence-based Safe Touches program is a 50-minute workshop delivered directly to elementary age children using puppets in the classroom setting.  Therefore, implementation in the prevention pilot must follow the implementation of the fidelity model.  After attending the workshop, children are sent home with a workbook to be completed with the parents.  County Coordinators will be supported to organize the community-based training (Stewards of Children) at no cost for parents in districts thus the comprehensive strategy will simultaneously reach children and their parents with similar content that can be discussed within the family setting.  Optimally, these programs can be delivered in parallel.

Question: Safe Touches was evaluated with a population of 2nd and 3rd graders in a  low income urban environment by using a cluster-randomized classroom with control groups. 

My question is as follows:  As the PCCD Endowment grant is a research study looking at the efficacy of this program in 2nd grades in Pennsylvania, will grantees be expected to follow the same protocols – randomized control groups, the Children’s Knowledge of Abuse Questionnaire, parental consent, etc.? 
Answer: Safe Touches demonstrated effectiveness in a cluster-randomized trial, particularly among second graders, and the results were published in a peer-reviewed journal. By definition, this qualifies Safe Touches as an evidence-based program. The implementation of Safe Touches as part of the Prevention Pilot, therefore, does not require replication of the cluster-randomized trial. A child’s participation in the Safe Touches workshop will require parent permission which will be obtained passively (e.g., the County Coordinator will distribute a letter to be sent home to parents that describes the program and a method to retract permission). With regard to the research aspect, this will also require active parent permission (e.g., a signed consent form to be returned by the child). This process will be facilitated by the County Coordinator with heavy support from the Penn State Implementation Coordinator and research team.

Question: I was able to meet with the majority of our school district superintendents yesterday and they reported that although they are supportive of the grant many of them will need to get their school board’s approve for implementation of Safe Touches. This will be difficult to accomplish prior to June 15th.

Can their letters of support be worded to indicate that they support the grant and safe touches but will need school board approval prior to implementation?
Answer:  Yes, you can have your Superintendents provide letters that state their willingness to participate and the steps that still need to be taken before Safe Touches can be implemented. 

Question: How many sessions is the Safe Touches program?  A single dose or multiple dose session?

AnswerThe Safe Touches curriculum is delivered in a single 45-50 minute session in the classroom by two trained facilitators (i.e., not the teacher). Parent permission will be required for participation in the program as well as the brief research assessments.

Question:  Again under the activities: Safe Touches – what qualifies as 70% cooperation of the school districts – do we only need to involve public schools or is the expectation to capture parochial, charter, home based, etc.

Answer: We define cooperation of a school district when the applicant has obtained a letter of support from the superintendent. The applicant must demonstrate cooperation from 70% of public school districts. Any other schools (e.g., parochial, charter, etc) would be in excess of that 70%. We are focusing on public schools because the entire prevention project is designed with sustainability in mind. By focusing implementation efforts on public schools, it allows for the possibility of department of education funding in the future.

Question: As this is a research project with the intent of replication across the Commonwealth in future years, will funding be approved for counties with small, medium and large general populations? Or are the authors looking to fund mid-size counties with a limited number of school districts and general population size?

Answer: The Prevention Pilot will evaluate the effect of implementing a coordinated, comprehensive child sexual abuse prevention program. If effective, the intent would be to replicate across the Commonwealth. As such, the Pilot is designed to be delivered in any size county as long as the necessary requirements specified in the funding announcement are satisfied (e.g., 200 cases of CSA averaged over 2015-2016). The implementation budget is calculated on a per capita basis with the understanding and expectation that larger counties will require a higher level of funding as compared to a smaller county. PCCD and the Child Maltreatment Solutions Network will be working with each selected county individually on the budget for the pilot.   

Question: Would a limited (contiguous) geographic region within a populous county be considered as a service area for this project? If so, would an entire smaller county be a preferred service area over a smaller section of a large/populous county?

Answer: A limited, contiguous geographic region within a populous county could be considered as a service area for this project, but only if the region included has at least 200 or more investigated child sexual abuse cases annually (i.e., averaged over the past two years using 2015 and 2016 data) and meets all of the other requirements of the solicitation. The applicant must be able to share the data that meets this requirement (i.e., demonstrate how the county will be able to delineate referrals and investigations by zip code from this region from the rest of the county).  In addition, the applicant will need to work with the researcher to identify an adequate control region (i.e., another contiguous region within the county that is not overlapping and meets the same average number (i.e., greater than or equal to 200) of investigated sexual abuse cases and matches the applicant region demographically (e.g., income, minority status, etc.)). 

Question: Do agencies who apply need to contact those entities that provide Stewards of Children or train for Safe Touches in advance of the grant application? Or will this be managed by the CC and CMSN after approval?

Answer: Answer: You do not need to reach out to any program developers at this time.  PCCD and the Child Maltreatment Solutions Network will help coordinate contact with the developers after counties are selected to participate. 

Question: Under line to be implemented with parents. Can you send me a list of evidence based programs other than the SafeCare and Incredible Years?

Answer: The Prevention Pilot emphasizes the use of evidence-based programs (EBP) in each of its components (e.g., community, school, and parent). We expect applicants will use a variety of evidence-based parenting programs, however not all parenting programs are evidence-based. We would refer applicants to the resource guide from the EPIS Center at Penn State to review the criteria for being evidence-based (http://episcenter.psu.edu/sites/default/files/What%20do%20we%20mean%20when%20we%20say%20a%20program%20is%20evidence%20based.pdf). An additional resource we would direct applicants to is the Blueprints website (http://www.blueprintsprograms.com/images/standards_of_evidence.jpg).
There are numerous evidence-based parenting programs that an agency might be implementing. The Prevention Pilot is focused on parent education programs. We have gathered a list of programs below from a number of EBP registries. However, please note, the list of programs that follows is not intended to be exhaustive nor is it in any specific order. Individual applicants may inquire as to whether the programs the CYS agency in their county is currently implemented is considered evidence-based.
·         Nurturing Parenting Program
·         Triple P- Positive Parenting Program
·         Strengthening Families Program 10-14
·         Parents as Teachers
·         The Incredible Years
·         SafeCare
·         Nurse Family Partnership
·         Parent Management Training
·         Healthy Families America
·         Home Instruction for Parents of Preschool Youngsters (HIPPY)
·         Early Head Start

Question: Is parent consent required for a child to participate in the Safe Touches program? If so, is a passive consent or an active consent required? (A passive consent procedure typically involves distributing a letter to the children’s parents or guardians explaining the nature of the program and providing a method to retract permission. In an active consent procedure, the introductory letter explains the nature of the study and provides a method to document permission.)

Answer: Similar to other school-delivered programming, Safe Touches will require the parent’s permission for the child to participate in the Safe Touches workshop. This will be done, as suggested, using a passive procedure – the County Coordinator will distribute a letter to be sent home to parents that describes the program and a method to retract permission. With regard to the research aspect of the Prevention Pilot, active consent will be required. That is, the child must return a parent-signed form before they can be asked to participate in the research. Each child must also assent to participation in the research project. This process will be facilitated by the Implementation Coordinator and Research Team from Penn State.

Question: Our team is seeking some clarification please on this item in the grant application:


9. Scoring (page 10) #3
Describe how the county tracks LEO cases that may not be captured by CYS or the county data system.
 
Question- so that we are understanding the purpose of this request and providing an adequate process in the application – is this information needed so the data reflects an accurate # of cases?
(since CYS #’s alone do not now include the LEO cases)
Or should the process reflect more detail on any investigation by LEO?
Answer: We are requesting this information to get an understanding of how counties handle LEO data and to get an idea of how many LEO cases are handled.  We are not necessarily requesting that a county change their process and procedure, but rather to thoroughly describe the process of capturing LEO data in their application. The applicant should describe the process by which LEOs that do not come from CYS come to the attention of the DA’s Office and if/how these cases are captured in CYS numbers.

Question: (Page 10, Section 9, a, 3) “Describe how your county tracks LEO case that may not be captured by CYS or the county data system…”

The question again is, what should CYS be doing with this information if/when it is received by them?  In our County DA System, we have a mechanism to count cases charged, what type of abuse, and the like, but we also receive ALL of the cases CYS has so that none are missed…
Answer: Each county tracks LEO cases differently.  Sometimes this is coordinated at the District Attorney’s Office and sometimes this is done at the Child Advocacy Center.  Your county would need to come up with a system to track this information that will be agreed upon by all agencies involved. We want an accurate accounting for the number of reports and substantiations during the trial. The applicant should outline the plan so none are missed, the intention is not to reopen.

Question: Can decreased incidence rates of sexual abuse really be expected within the 3 years of the project?

Answer: The Prevention Pilot, as described in the funding announcement, is the first of its kind. It was informed by prior research conducted in Georgia which demonstrated an ultimate decrease in reports despite an initial increase (i.e., uptick) during implementation (Schober, D. J., Fawcett, S. B., Thigpen, S., Curtis, a., & Wright, R. (2012). An empirical case study of a child sexual abuse prevention initiative in Georgia. Health Education Journal, 71(0), 291–298). Our hypotheses about what we can expect in the Prevention Pilot are informed by these results. We anticipate that at the introduction of every prevention component, we will see an increase in the number of reports. During the third year of the project we expect that the number of reports and substantiations will decrease and calibrate. However, it is important to note that the effect of this kind of comprehensive prevention effort will take time to become evident in administrative data.

Question: We are coordinating with the County’s District Attorney’s Office for this pilot, and they wanted to know if they are able to hire an administrative person to help process the overwhelming amount of CY104s and 47s.  The Children’s Advocacy Center is run out of the DA’s Office and they are struggling with dramatic increase in child abuse allegations.

Answer: PCCD and the Child Maltreatment Solutions Network will be working with each selected county individually on the budget for the pilot.  However, all expenses will be directly related to the project and implementation. 

Question:  We met with the Director of DHS and Deputy of CYF and both informed us that the highest risk parents are not involved in evidence-based programs, but other, individualized programs that meet their higher level of need. Most of these parents receive in-home services by CYF. If we are attempting to reach the highest risk individuals would you consider allowing us to use the programming from the Endowment Act?

Answer: As directed in the Funding Announcement, the applicant should list all programs delivered to high risk parents (even those that are not evidence-based). Although the mission of the Prevention Pilot is to move counties toward the use of only evidence-based programs because of the documented scientific rigor inherent in an evidence-base, PCCD and CMSN will work with the applicants to identify adequate programs and will provide opportunity for training in evidence-based programs, if requested.

Question: I have a question about the Endowment Act - Prevention and who can apply.  On page 6 under "5.  Eligible applicants:" it says "county commissioners, DAs and/or county CYS agencies are eligible."  Does this mean that nonprofits that are already doing this work in our county cannot apply? 

Answer: PCCD and Penn State selected county agencies to be eligible applicants to show county-wide support and coordination for the project among all three components (i.e., the parent-based, school-based and community-based components).  While the applicant agency is a county agency, it is expected that the project include multiple agencies within the county due to the collaborative nature of the pilot.  We also expect that there may be multiple recipient agencies once PCCD and Penn State work with the counties to develop the project budget. 

Question: If all other eligibility requirements are met, does the fact that our county already uses Stewards of Children and has trained 5% of our county population disqualify us from this grant?

Answer: Currently having 5% of your county population trained in Darkness to Light – Stewards of Children would not disqualify you from applying for this grant.  However, since this training is only “good” for three years, you would need to include a discussion of how you will continue to maintain that 5% target. 

Question: If OCYS is submitting the grant and are grant recipient, does the CYS Administrator still need to provide the letter of commitment? 

Answer: Yes, a letter of commitment to the project is needed. 

Question:      Can additional staff or local evaluation contractors conduct consent process and collect assessment data, or is the county coordinator the only person who can be budgeted for those tasks?

Answer: There is no need for the county to consider additional staff for the research aspect of this project. The research aspect is funded and coordinated by the Penn State Research Team. We have designed the research to fit within the context of intervention delivery and no additional staff is required.

Question: Would it be possible to include an incentive in the budget for participants to the Darkness to Light program? We have reviewed a state wide program in Georgia that has had success with recruitment this way.

Answer: As stated in the funding announcement, this project is structured differently from previous grants in several ways, in particular with regard to the budget. First, PCCD and CMSN will work with selected counties to build the Implementation Budget. We have designed this on a per-capita basis and this is why we are asking applicants for elements such as the adult population census. The research of the Prevention Pilot is entirely supported by PSU; in other words, these funds are separate from the Implementation Budget. There are incentives built in related to the research aspect of this project, but not for participation in the program generally. The Prevention Pilot is designed with an eye towards sustainability and as such, no incentives for program participation will be budgeted.

Question: What considerations have been made as to the impact on ChildLine, County Children and Youth agencies, CACs, victim services agencies and others who provide counseling/advocacy and school districts who will be involved in the reporting and responding to of many additional mandated reports?  With the implementation of this program, there will be a significant increase in the number of mandated reports that will be made from each program.  While this is a positive in responding to and ensuring access to care, the impact on other agencies will be tremendous. 

Answer: The implementation budget does include funding for additional effort in the CYS agency as we do expect there to be an uptick in the number of reports made as the comprehensive prevention strategy is rolled out. The implementation budget includes additional employee effort in the budget for years 2 and 3 of the project to be spread across the county’s agencies as they see fit. The funding is only available in years 2 and 3 because it is at this point in the project when we would anticipate an increased demand for services. Additionally, the increase in reports and therefore demand for services should be addressed in the county’s needs-based-budget for the subsequent year.
Q&A text
collapse Funding Announcement Title Egrants Budget Work Around ‎(2)

Categories affected:  Consultant, Consultant Travel, Consultant Product/Service

Field(s) affected:  Justification
 
Applications containing multiple budgets are the ones affected.  The justification entered for one budget will carry to the justification for all budgets and cannot be edited, as they can be in the other budget categories. 
 
Work Around: Enter one justification. Use a Heading to indicate the budget the justification that follows pertains to. This justification will show with each budget allowing the application to provide a justification for each budget. 
collapse Funding Announcement Title Egrants VOCA Project Description (Mutli-County Projects) Work Around ‎(1)

Question: There seems to be a glitch in the Project Description- VOCA Competitive section of this application.  In Project Description section, item 6.  If 6.1 is Yes, directions indicate that in 6.1.2 we are to provide a separate narrative for each county-  “If multiple counties will be served as part of this project a separate narrative must be provided per county by clicking "ADD NEW RESPONSE."     However, if you click on Add New Response, it populates question 6.1 again, rather than another  text box under 6.1.2.

Answer: This was in reference to projects that are proposing to provide services in multiple counties.  This was a glitch in the system.  Our IT department has resolved this issue within this section.  Applicants can add the proposed county in Question 6.2 of each response and the proposed services for the county in Question 6.3.  The question and the section should appear as the following: Click Here

collapse Funding Announcement Title Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) 2018-2020 Competitive Funding ‎(204)

Question: Is Victim Compensation Assistance an eligible direct service under VOCA 2018-2020 Competitive Funding?  It’s not specifically listed on Appendix A.

Answer: Victim Compensation Assistance remains a VOCA eligible expense.  Victim Compensation Assistance is listed in Appendix F, VOCA Reporting Requirements, as a service that agencies must track, and report on quarterly. 

 

Question: ​Appendix F (Reporting Requirements) reporting question E5 refers to “civil legal attorney assistance with family law issues.”   In the definitions (page 45) of E5 “Civil legal attorney with family issues” the definition includes “such legal services may include financial exploitation, custody, housing disputes, public utilities termination, public benefit hearing/terminations, vacating/expunge convictions….”  Is civil legal assistance under E5 limited to family law issues (custody, visitation or support) or does it include the wider range of issues (e.g. housing disputes, public benefits) included in the definition of E5?

Answer: The federal VOCA guidelines state under section 94.119,” that emergency legal assistance, such as filing for restraining or protective orders and obtaining emergency custody orders and visitation” are allowable VOCA activities.  However, the federal Office for Victims of Crime (OVC) further expanded the list of eligible legal services in the Preamble to include proceedings for protective/restraining orders or campus  administrative protection/stay away orders: family, custody, housing and dependency matter, particularly for victims of intimate partner violence, child abuse, sexual assault elder abuse, and human trafficking: immigration assistance for victims of human trafficking, sexual assault and domestic violence; intervention with creditors, law enforcement (to obtain police reports) and other entities on behalf of victims of identity theft and financial fraud; intervention with administrative agencies, schools/colleges and other circumstances where legal advice or intervention would assist in addressing the consequences of a person’s victimization.  OVC stated in the Preamble that tort actions and criminal defense legal services are unallowable expenses.  For reporting purposes, the expanded civil legal services will be reported under E5. Civil legal attorney assistance with family law issues. 

Question: ​If the project provides services to clients from multiple counties, is the grantee required to prepare separate reports for each county at each reporting period?

Answer: Yes, our current reporting requirements require all agencies to report data by county if providing services in more than county and requesting funding for multiple counties.

Question: Can we use VOCA funds for Language Line interpretation services?

 

Answer: Yes, VOCA funding may support Language Line Interpretation services

Question: Can VOCA funding be used to provide services to victims of crime where the crime was perpetrated abroad, e.g. domestic violence, felonious assaults?  I understand crimes falling under the international terrorism definition would be covered if the crime occurred abroad, but does the funding cover other crimes that occur abroad?

 
Answer: The purpose of VOCA funding is ensure the delivery of direct services to crime victims in Pennsylvania.  VOCA eligible services can be provided to International crime victims that are currently living in PA.    
 

Question: If awarded a VOCA Competitive Grant 2016-2019 which includes Civil Legal Services and would like the CLR eligible services to be expanded from current emergency services to those CLR eligible services under the new VOCA Competitive announcement 2018-2020 (which are the New VOCA Regs. approved in August 2016) , BUT do not want additional funds or additional staff, can a PMR to the current grant (2016-2019) be submitted since it would just be an expansion of services provided within the same contract?

Answer: If you are interested in the newly eligible services, you will need to apply for funding under this solicitation to support those new services.  The projects from the previous VOCA Competitive grants are different projects and were awarded for separate purposes.

Question: VOCA Allowable Activities includes ‘Coordination of Activities.’  What VOCA Eligible Direct Service in the Project Description would these activities fall under if the coordination of activities was happening at a CAC, i.e. coordination of forensic interviews, medicals exams, therapy, etc.?   Personal Advocacy and Emotional Support?

Answer: Coordination of activities is defined as activities that facilitate the provision of direct services; including, but not limited to, crisis response teams, multi-disciplinary teams, coalitions to support and assist victims and other such programs, and salaries and expenses of such coordinators.
 
Coordination of activities is an indirect service and is not considered a direct service.  It is up to the applicant to describe how the project is proposing to be implemented, how the services will be provided and which VOCA funded positions will be providing VOCA eligible services within the project description of the application.   

Question: Would services provided for domestic and/or sexual violence victims through a safe custody exchange and supervised visitation program be eligible for funding through this grant?

Answer: Applicants must first identify if the entity administering the safe custody exchange or supervised visitation program is an eligible applicant based on VOCA’s definition and if yes, must describe a nexus between the proposed activity and one of the four VOCA goals, i.e. respond to emotional, psychological or physical needs, assist participation in criminal justice process, restore a measure of safety or security.  Finally, in the project description section explain the VOCA eligible services the applicant intends to provide during the safe exchange and supervised visitation

 

Question: When participating in outreach, must we verify that the population is a victim? (For example, some of our work involves working with teens and young adults on college campuses, who we know are susceptible to victimization, but are not necessarily victims themselves at the moment of outreach.)

Answer: Any VOCA funded outreach must ensure that the outreach is designed to inform potential crime victims of specific rights and services and provide them with (or refer them to) services and assistance. During the outreach presentations, victims would have the ability to self-identify as crime victims. 

Question:  Will there be more of an in-depth explanation for the new services that were added or is it left open for interpretation? ­

Answer: Additional information on the new services can be found in Appendix A-VOCA Allowable Direct Service /Activity Costs, pg. 22-26 of the funding announcement.  ­In addition, service standards will be developed for new services in the near future. ­

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Question: Can this VOCA application underwrite the expense to send (2) local detective to training to improve interviewing skills of child/teen victims? There is no other source of funding for this specific focus and would overall improve case disposition of offenders against children/teens.

Answer: VOCA funds cannot be used to fund training for Law Enforcement to improve interview skills. 

Question: Can this VOCA source be used for production of a PSA ad and running the spot through movie theater to promote accessing services? 

Answer: The new VOCA expanded services include public service announcements in other public forums that are designed to inform crime victims of their rights and services available to victims. 

Question: We do not currently utilize the ETO system.  If we use these competitive funds for assistance with transportation costs, housing and emergency medical supplies, would we only enter the stats for the victims we provide that service to in the ETO system?

For example, we provide the following services to a victim during the same reporting period: accompaniment, pre-sentence notification, and assistance with transportation.  The assistance with transportation is covered under this grant.  However the other services are covered under RASA.  Is that okay that the same person is being counted under both grants?
 
Answer: All VOCA recipients are required to utilize ETO (Efforts to Outcome), to submit data for federal reporting requirements.  Agencies will have the option to use the Aggregate or Case Management version of the software system.  If agencies choose to use the Case Management version of ETO, they also have the ability to track procedural services provided by RASA and/or VOJO funding. RASA and VOJO data will not be included in the VOCA report, but can be extracted from ETO to file the RASA /VOJO reports in EGRANTS.  Alternatively, a VOCA recipient can choose to utilize the Aggregate version of ETO to enter the VOCA services and demographics totals into their quarterly reports. All VOCA recipients are required to maintain data backup to validate their data. 
 

Question: Can we apply for transportation costs to and from alternative therapy or legal services for clients and counselors?

Answer: Transportation assistance is a VOCA allowable expense.  This includes assisting the victim with attending appointments, criminal/juvenile justice proceedings, and other public proceedings relevant to the victimization.

Question: Can you give an example of procedural services?

Answer: These are services that previously were only funded through RASA and/or VOJO funding.  Examples include pre-disposition or sentencing, court accompaniment, court notifications, etc.

Question:Additionally, In the solicitation on page 16 regarding Reporting Requirements it states: All VOCA funded programs ….are required to use the ESQ Survey.  Does this preclude the use of surveys developed previously which tend to be shorter, to the point and not quite invasive?

Answer: No, the ESQ-LF does not preclude the utilization of other surveys.  However, the program is required to distribute , collect and input the results of the ESQ survey as a condition of its grant.

Question: Please clarify, I am including the language from an email I received and would like clarification about whether this applies to CACs and other victim services agencies. “Due to the combined VOCA announcement that is out currently (attached) and the requirements that JPO/DA sign off the on the projects submitted (pages 30-33), I’d like to schedule a meeting about applications that are in the works and ensure from a systems perspective that we’re all on the same page.”
 
Answer: The required forms found on pages 30-33 of the funding announcement only apply to projects proposing to provide procedural services.
 
Procedural Services are mandated by the Crime Victims Act, Juvenile Act, and/or the Pennsylvania Rules of Juvenile Court Procedure to be performed by the District Attorney and Chief Juvenile Probation Officer.  Examples of these services are listed in Appendix A VOCA Allowable Direct Services/Activity Costs under “Facilitation of Participation in Criminal Justice and Other Public Proceedings Arising From the Crime.”   
 
The forms are to be completed by the District Attorney (DA) and/or Chief Juvenile Probation Officer of the county for which the VOCA applicant is being authorized to provide the procedural services. This requirement does not apply to the state-based procedural services provided by the Office of Victim Advocate.

Question:Am I right, that we can't submit a project modification to the 2016 VOCA contract for legal services in order to provide the expanded services?  We need to submit a new proposal through this funding process?­

Answer: Yes, that is correct.­​

Question: TO PCCD STAFF: In the recently-issued ​announcement for Victims of Crime Act 2018-2020 Competitive Funding, "legal assistance services" have been expanded as a "VOCA Allowable Direct Service".  We have several related questions:

a. The term "dependence matters" is used on Page 23 of 49.  Does this refer to victimization-related work in Pennsylvania's Dependency Courts under the Juvenile Act (also known in some counties as "Juvenile Court Dependency" or "Juvenile Court C&Y cases")? 

Answer: The term "dependency matters" as listed in the federal guidelines is described in the preamble to include, but is not limited to, victims of intimate partner violence, child abuse, sexual assault, elder abuse, and human trafficking. 

b. In the "Definitions: VOCA Allowable Direct Service" section, under Criminal/Civil Justice System Assistance, is attorney practice for child victims (e.g., known variably in different counties and in different types of cases as "guardian ad litem/GAL" or "counsel" or "Child Advocate") a form of practice that is contemplated by this definition?  The service appears to us to qualify as: "civil legal attorney assistance in obtaining protection" AND "civil legal attorney assistance with family law issues" AND "Other legal advice and/or Counsel". 

Answer: Yes, civil/criminal representation for child victims that is directly related to the child's victimization is included in direct services. 

Question: Please review the requirements for the Efforts to Outcomes (ETO) Software System.  Specifically, if an agency is not currently using a case management software system, how will compliance with the reporting requirement be achieved?

Answer: All agencies will submit quarterly reports through the Efforts to Outcomes (ETO) system.  There are two versions of ETO – a Case Management Version and an Aggregate Reporting Only version.  Agencies can choose which version they wish to use.  If an agency chooses not to use the Case Management version of ETO, they must have in place a means to record and track the required reporting data for VOCA funding.  Your agency would be required to compile the required data through a different method (case management program other than ETO, excel spreadsheet, access database, etc.).

Question: I have been working on submitting this grant since approximately 12:30 am this morning and the page erases text which has resulted in going back and forth for 6 HOURS! I believe I have created an excellent program that will really help people. However, Egrants site is ridiculously cumbersome and quite frankly, there is no need for this. My concern is this delay has me without sleep for 2 days in preparing the final draft as well as with re writing the same text over and over and I may not make the deadline. I would ask that this be accommodated so I may complete the process. I am working from home.​ 

Answer: A few reminders about the Egrants system, it will time out after 20 minutes of inactivity.  Please keep track of the time-out clock, at the top right of your screen, as you are completing your application.  In addition, each narrative section in Egrants has size limitations/character limits and therefore, we advise applicants to keep this in mind when developing their response to the sections.  If you encounter issues with text being cut off from your narrative this may be due to the size limitations and character limits of the section you are completing.  A helpful tip is completing your responses in a separate Word.doc. that will allow you to see the word count of the response.  It is important that you make every effort to be clear and concise when developing your responses.  If you continue to encounter issues with the sections not saving your entered responses, please contact the Egrants Help Desk at (717) 787-5887.  Please note:  While Egrants will accept your Application up until midnight of the due date, Help Desk staff will not be available after 4:00 p.m.​

Due to the competitive nature of this solicitation, extensions cannot be granted.  The Application must be entered into Egrants no later than Friday, September 29, 2017 by 11:59p.m., Eastern Time. 

Question: Should I assume the following for the years on the website for the cost spread:

Year 1 – April 2018 thru March 2019
Year 2 – April 2019 thru March 2020
Year 3 – March 2020 thru Sept 2020
 
Answer: The project dates for this 30 month funding announcement are the following:
 
Year 1 – April 1, 2018 thru March 31, 2019
Year 2 – April 1, 2019 thru March 31, 2020
Year 3 – April 1, 2020 thru September 30, 2020

Question: I have a question on the VOCA competitive grant. I would like to request funds to support a portion of the compensation for the second full time victim witness coordinator in this office.  The DA’s office will be funding part of her position for the rest of 2017 and 2018.  The county will in turn be funding part of her position in 2019.  I would like to relieve the DA’s office and the county of this financial burden by applying for funds to ensure the stability of this position.  Would this be a potentially funded project?

Answer: Applicants interested in proposing projects for procedural services can submit proposed projects for a VOCA position.  This VOCA competitive solicitation includes the expanded service of procedural services as one of many services a project may propose to provide.  If an agency proposes to provide procedural services, then the Certification form for procedural services signed by the District Attorney/Chief JPO is required as an attachment.  Please keep in mind, VOCA funds may not be used to supplant (replace) state or local funds that have been appropriated for the same purpose.

Question: ​Will VOCA cover a new or sustaining position at 100%?

Answer: VOCA can cover a position at 100% if all the efforts/services provided by that VOCA position are 100% VOCA eligible. 

Question: Our project focuses on working with incarcerated victims.  In the "Problem Description" section, it is asking to describe the demographic makeup, socio-economic conditions, and types of crimes/victimizations most prevalent of the area to be served.  Would we need to provide this information for the general population for the entire county or just information of the population in the institutions we hope to be serving?

Answer: The Problem Description section should include information that is specific to the service delivery area and the proposed population to be served for your specific project.  Applicants can include the demographics for the prison population at that institution targeted, as well as those for the targeted group the applicant intends to serve within the institution’s population.

Question: Since the character limit on question #2 in the Project Description section is exceptionally high compared to the subsequent questions in that section (20,000 versus 5,000), we just wanted to confirm that this is accurate. This will help us to discern your expectations for the response. Thank you!

Answer: The character limit is higher for #2, than the other questions because this is where applicants are to list and concisely describe the goal(s) of the project and provide sufficient detail to properly understand the project that is being proposed.  Please refer to the funding announcement for the type of detailed information which must be addressed in this section.    

Question:I read your answer to the question regarding keywords. I think the question was misunderstood. The concern is that there are no keywords to reflect counseling ,advocacy, crisis intervention, etc.  – the core direct services. Most of the keywords reflect some of the new eligible services but not the core services that some programs are applying for. It is unclear what we would choose if applying for counseling services etc. To choose the current keywords when applying for core services will be misleading to the reviewers.

Answer: The “Keyword” selection in the Summary section of the application is provided so that PCCD can track the selection of new services offered under this competitive solicitation.  If your project does not include any of the newly eligible VOCA services you do not need to complete this section.  This section is not scored and will not add or detract from the scoring of your application.  The VOCA Service Impact and Victimization Population and the VOCA Funding Allocation sections must be completed, but are not scored either.

Question: Please provide guidance on how best to include references cited in the Problem Description and Project Description sections of the proposal. Is it acceptable to attach a References Cited document?

Answer: For this solicitation, references cited can be added as an attachment or within the Problem Description and Project Description sections of the application.  

Question: The previous VOCA competitive RFP listed targeted populations (e.g. LEP, Veterans) that applicants were encouraged to apply to serve.  Are there any targeted populations in this funding cycle?

Answer: This VOCA Competitive 18-20 funding announcement does not have any scoring preferences or targeted populations.  

Question: If one is applying for a statewide project, under the Problem Description, should we give an overview of PA's social economic and demographics in general since the coverage area encompasses the whole state? 

Answer:Yes, if an applicant is applying for a statewide project, the applicant should we give an overview of PA's social economic and demographics if the coverage area encompasses the whole state.

Question: Is there a limit to the amount of money one agency can apply for?

Answer: Applicants must review and adhere to the county allocations chart for the limits of funding that agencies can apply for by individual county.  This information is located in Appendix C, page 39, of this solicitation.  For applicants that are interested in proposing statewide projects, the maximum amount is $1.5 million per project. 

Question: Does the collaborating agency provide the positions hired through this grant and are those job descriptions needed as part of the grant application or do you only need job descriptions for the applying agency?

Answer: All job descriptions for VOCA funded staff are required to be attached.  The only exception is for contracted staff.  For contracted staff, a copy of the contract is required to be attached.  

Question: Is one agency allowed to submit two applications?  We have two entirely different projects and plan to fund only one of them.  Can we submit both and see which one is funded?

Answer: Applicants are encouraged to submit one application for county projects even if they involve services in more than one county or more than one project in the county.  If the applicant is proposing to provide more than 1 project each project should be separately labeled, discussed, documented and budgeted, as required, in each section of the application.

Question: We are a standalone non profit (501c3) Children’s Advocacy Center with intention of seeking VOCA funding to support our forensic interview process. If our CAC meets all the VOCA requirements (specifically related to volunteer usage which supports the forensic interview process), can the County apply for the grant (as the lead agency) with the CAC as the sub-recipient? A previous answer indicated that “the lead agency would be responsible for ensuring that ALL VOCA requirements are met”. Does this mean that the lead agency (i.e. County) must ensure that the CAC meets the VOCA requirements as the sub-recipient of the funding OR that the lead agency (i.e. County) must meet the VOCA requirements?

Answer:  Based on the example provided, the county would be the applicant and the CAC would be the sub-recipient.  In this case, the county is responsible for ensuring the sub-recipient is meeting the VOCA requirements and would be required to demonstrate its compliance with these requirements.  Since the county is utilizing the CAC as the provider of services, it is the responsibility of the CAC to comply with all VOCA related requirements that would also include the volunteer requirement.  The county, as the applicant, is not required to have volunteers outside the sub-recipient’s project, but instead ensure the sub-recipient is in compliance.

Question: Do we need to provide a therapist license if we are not going to select and hire the therapist after we find out about funding?

 

Answer: Once you have the position filled, a copy of the license is required to be submitted.

 

Question: A surrounding county is planning to request money to provide an attorney to clients in their county and also our county when needed.  Our county is considering writing a letter of support for the purpose of their grant request.  If we write a letter of support for their grant request, would our agency be able to submit a request for the competitive funds for our agency regarding a completely separate project?

Answer: Applicants can provide a letter of support to a different proposed project, and in turn, submit their own proposed project for a VOCA eligible services.   

Question: Do these funds cancel our current competitive funding for 2016-2019.   Thanks.

Answer: This current funding announcement VOCA 18-20 is not replacing or canceling the current competitive 16-19 VOCA grants.  This funding announcement is optional for existing or new victim service programs.

 

Question: Does the in-direct service of CAC administrative duties, such as preparing parent packets, for non-offending parents qualify as volunteer hours?

Answer: Yes, this would be considered an indirect service for VOCA volunteer hours 

​Question: Could a non-paid Board of Directors for a 501(c)3 non-profit fulfill the requirement for volunteer hours?

 
Answer: Yes, non-paid board members would satisfy the VOCA volunteer requirement.  VOCA volunteers must support the organization’s VOCA project by either directly or indirectly supporting the eligible direct services.        

Question: Can you define secondary exposure?

Answer:  It is unclear what this question is referring to.  This funding announcement does discuss victims and secondary victims (significant others).  A victim is a person who has suffered physical, sexual, financial or emotional harm as the result of a crime.  They can be a primary or secondary (significant other) victim of the crime.

​Question: How does VOCA see the absorption and sustainability of the new initiatives being funded following the 30 months?

Answer: The VOCA 18-20 funding announcement has the project end date of September 30, 2020.  At this time, PCCD is unable to provide any other additional information past the September 30, 2020 date. 

Question:­ If we apply for multiple projects, and you determine that you can only fund some of them, can we revise the application or is it automatically denied? ­

Answer: ­If you are applying for multiple projects and one is approved for funding you will be notified of the support for that project.  You will then be requested to modify your application at that time.

Question: Is there a possibility that if a number of applicants are applying under one county, and they all score high, but their combined requests are greater than the county allotment, that there will be possible negotiation with PCCD to fund part of the request?

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Answer: ­PCCD will review all applications and recommendations on who will be awarded as part of the scoring and review process.  We are unable to provide additional information at this time.

Question: ​ Do the reviewers scores alone determine the awards or a combination of the scores and PCCD's recommendations or other factors?

Answer: The reviewers alone do not determine the final decision.  They are one part of the overall PCCD review process for competitive applications.

Question: Is it possible to have a waiver for use of the ESQ Survey?

Answer: The ESQ-LF is required to be used by every VOCA funded agency that provides services to victims ages 14 and older.  Children Advocacy Centers are the only types of agencies that are not required to use the ESQ-LF.

Question: Could you clarify if Advisory board members quality as volunteers under VOCA?

Answer: Yes, non-paid board members would satisfy the VOCA volunteer requirement.  VOCA volunteers must support the organization’s VOCA project by either directly or indirectly supporting the eligible direct services.

Question:Will preference be given to new programs, not previously funded by VOCA funding?

Answer: There will be no preference given to applicants.  Each application will be scored on its own merits.    ​ 

Questions:If the budget covers more than one county how will the specific county allocations be applied to this application?­

Answer: In the project description, you are required to list the amount of funding being requested from each county.  In addition, the Funding Allocation section also requests the county allocation breakout.­​

Question:We intend to contract with therapists, however those therapists aren't currently on staff.  We don't intend to hire these individuals until we know there is funding available so wouldn’t have access to their license, how can this work? ­

Answer: The application should be listed as to be contracted and once your organization enters into a contract with the individual their license would need to be submitted to PCCD at that time.  This may be after the application is submitted and approved.­​

Question:Would enhancing/improving existing salaries of direct service staff be considered an improvement of an existing project?­

Answer: Yes, this would be considered an improvement.​

Question:If we reference a journal article or report in the application, do we need to upload the report into Egrants?­

Answer: We encourage applicants to attach documents that support your proposed project. The applicant will need to determine what those documents are.­​

Question: What if the contractor is a long time contractor with the organization, already preforming the duties?  Do we need to obtain quotes from other possible contractors?  What if we obtained bids 3-10 years ago for the contractor?​

Answer: Yes, the following must be adhered to:  

There are new procurement procedures which must be followed depending on the dollar amount being expended.  The specifics for each procedure and threshold amount may be found in PCCD’s Applicant’s Manual at the following link: http://www.pccd.pa.gov/Funding/Documents/Applicants%20Manual/Applicant%27s%20Manual%20-%20Current%20Version.pdf,  beginning on page 16.​

​​Question: Can programs apply for multiple direct services under the "direct services" eligible activities, or does a program have to pick one direct service only to apply for?

Answer: Yes, a program may include multiple direct services as part of the VOCA proposed project.

Question: Does the volunteer requirement apply to statewide projects?

Answer: All VOCA awarded projects must use volunteers, unless they can provide a compelling reason for a waiver and have a waiver granted by PCCD.  The volunteer requirement is applicable for all projects, this includes a single county, multiple counties, regional projects and statewide projects.  

 

Question: Our agency operates an NCA member Child Advocacy Center as a component of our agency.  While we do not utilize volunteers in the CAC at this point in time, we do recruit, manage and train volunteers in other components of the agency. Do we meet the eligibility criteria to apply for VOCA funding?

Answer: The federal Office for Victims of Crime requires that VOCA funded agencies use volunteers, unless the agency can provide a compelling reason for a waiver and have a waiver granted by PCCD.  The volunteers must be used for the VOCA funded project, either as a direct service volunteer or an indirect service volunteer.  A volunteer in a different section of the umbrella agency will not meet the criteria of a VOCA volunteer. 

Question: If I have received Non-Competitive VOCA funding in the past, is this funding announcement now replacing the Non-Competitive funding and is it mandatory that I apply for this funding announcement in order to receive regular VOCA funding?

Answer: This current funding announcement VOCA 18-20 is not replacing the regular Non-Competitive VOCA grants.  The Office of Victims’ Services (OVS) will continue to fund the Non-Competitive grants.  This funding announcement is optional for existing or new victim service programs.   

Question:Request:  "A written statement that a checking account for sub-grant funds will be arranged so that at least two signatures are required for issuance of checks, and a list of those individuals who have such authority."

Are "sub-grant funds" for pass-through applicants only?  ​​

Answer: Private non-profit agencies, which intend to apply for direct funding, are required to demonstrate the financial responsibility of the organization and its capability to administer the project for which funds are being requested.   Accordingly, each private non-profit agency applicant is required to submit a written statement that a checking account for sub-grant funds will be arranged so that at least two signatures are required for issuance of checks, and a list of those individuals who have such authority. 

 The term “sub-grant” is utilized by PCCD for the entities receiving grant funding directly from PCCD.  The applicant will need to verify this requirement is fulfilled by any non-profit pass-through entities the applicant’s project includes and if requested, by PCCD will need to have a copy on file.    ​

Question:Yale University will be a pass-through entity on this Funding Announcement.  The RFP asks for salary in hours; however, Yale does not use hourly salary calculations for our faculty and would not be able to generate reports based on an hourly rate of pay. Our system is an effort-based equivalency which is audited yearly by PWC. Would this be acceptable if an award should be made?

Answer: All subgrantees and pass-through organizations must maintain supporting documentation for personnel charges to PCCD grants in a manner that is in compliance with 2 CRR 200—UNIFORM ADMINISTRATIVE REQUIREMENTS, COST PRINCIPLES, AND AUDIT REQUIREMENTS FOR FEDERAL AWARDS.

Question:The RFP does not specify how the 30 months are split up. Is it acceptable to do year one for 6 months and then years 2 and 3 as 12-month periods? 

Answer: Budgets are to be based on your best estimate of how much is anticipated to be spent per budget line item, within each timeframe outlined in the chart below.  The federal award used to fund projects under this solicitation have a shelf-life covering the entire project period, which means if you underspend or overspend a budget line item within a given budget year, the overall effect on your budget is null.  Furthermore, subgrantees do not have to adjust their budgets should overspending or underspending in a budget year occur. 

The project dates for this 30 month funding announcement are the following:
Year 1 – April 1, 2018 thru March 31, 2019
Year 2 – April 1, 2019 thru March 31, 2020
Year 3 – April 1, 2020 thru September 30, 2020

Question: Can you clarify for us where in the budget detail we would put relocation and/or transitional housing. I had thought it would go in the "other" section but after just reviewing the webinar again it does not appear that is where you want it. Would you want to see number of rents, number of security deposits. etc. or one line item for Relocation with the number of families served and an average cost per family that include moving expenses, security deposit, and utility connections and would this go under supplies and operating costs? 

Answer: Relocation and/or transitional housing should go under the Supplies and Operating Expenses category.  Each separate type of item such as rent, security deposit, utilities connection fee, etc. requires a separate line item  (these items must be distinguished as relocation or transitional housing and from organizational rent, utilities, etc.).  Each line should contain the number of rents, security deposits, etc. and the amount budgeted for each occurrence. 

​Question: If we purchase a computer for $399, would we list it under "equipment", "general office supplies", or under "other"?

Answer: A computer would be budgeted as a line item in the Supplies and Operating Expenses budget category.

Question: ​We have 2 current VOCA contracts.  Under question 3 of this section, where should VOCA funds show up?  State Allocation? Local Allocation?  Or Other Non-federal allocation amount?  Should we include charitable foundations and donations under 3.4?  Does the amount in question 3.5 need to equal the amount in question 2?

Answer: VOCA funding is not reported in this section.

Question:​Our organization is a 501c3 corporation which operates in Northampton and Lehigh County PA.  For over six years, Shanth Project has provided trauma-informed yoga and mindfulness to the Northampton County Prison and Juvenile Justice Center of Northampton County PA.  Most recently we’ve started providing in-class mindfulness to many schools throughout these counties. As nearly 90% of those in this residential treatment facility have been subject to abuse, it is the Juvenile Justice classes for which we wish to apply for funding.  Our services are provided by sub-contracted, trained and qualified teachers who are schedule in two month blocks to teach weekly classes as their availability permits.  This varies month to month.  Each month they submit invoices for the number of classes at each facility and in which unit they’ve taught 1hr. classes.  At present, because of the variability. we do not contract for an entire year.  How would we approach listing these sub-contractors?  Would they be considered consultants as listed on page 76.   Would they need a personnel number?  Is it possible to list that we’ll need 4hrs of services per week per year and reflect the actual personal who taught after the fact on a monthly basis  in our reporting documentation- i.e.  who taught which classes each month (using their invoice/timesheet) as documentation.

 
Answer: Instructors would be budgeted under the Consultant category.  The term various may be used to designate the Consultant’s name.  The Consultant’s category allows input either on an hourly, day, or flat fee basis.  In this scenario you would either budget cost per hour x the number of hours per year or flat fee per session x number of sessions.  Additionally, contracts would need to be secured for each instructor.  Documentation for reimbursement consists of instructor’s invoice and timesheet (if individual instructor, not through a company).  Timesheets would consist of instruction date, number of hours, rate, extended cost, brief description of instruction provided. Instructors would be budgeted under the Consultant category.  The term various may be used to designate the Consultant’s name.  The Consultant’s category allows input either on an hourly, day, or flat fee basis.  In this scenario you would either budget  cost per hour x the number of hours per year or flat fee per session x number of sessions.  Additionally, contracts would need to be secured for each instructor.  Documentation for reimbursement consists of instructor’s invoice and timesheet (if individual instructor, not through a company).  Timesheets would consist of instruction date, number of hours, rate, extended cost, brief description of instruction provided.
 
 

Question: Is a vehicle lease an allowable expense under VOCA?

Answer: VOCA allows for the purchasing or leasing of vehicles - whichever is most economical. Routine maintenance, repair costs and automobile insurance are allowable VOCA costs. A log book must be kept of all vehicle activity and receipts for all expenditures must be maintained.

Question:We are working on the budget section for a multiple county project.  We have entered the budget for our organization as the recipient agency, but have been unable to enter the pass through budget for the collaborating agency in the other county.  Have clicked on 'pass through budget" but e-grants does not permit us to enter the name of the other agency.  Instead, the program then enters our agency budget on the consultant line item.

Answer: In order for a pass- through budget to be submitted for another organization, the other organization must be added as a recipient agency in the Main Summary section firstIf applicants are still having difficulty completing a pass-through budget, please contact the Egrants helpdesk at 717.787.5887. 

Question: Are non-supplantation forms required for this proposal?  We have submitted them with previous grants but did not see them listed as necessary attachments for this project.

Answer:There are no non-supplantation forms separate from the application.  There is a non-supplantation condition included in the standard subgrant conditions which are incorporated by reference into the application. 

Question: Our federal indirect cost rate was 16.7 but lapsed.  Our finance person has been working on the renewal application, but it won't be prepared in time for the VOCA deadline.  Does that mean we cannot even use the 10% de minimis rate?  If not, is there any way we could charge for indirect costs?

Answer: Your agency had a federally approved indirect cost rate, although now expired, this prevents your organization from using the 10% de minimis rate.  Your organization may not charge indirect costs if they do not have a current federally approved indirect cost rate.

Question: ​For the services section “Support Groups” would sending a VOCA covered staff person to a training on a specific support group model be allowable? Training fee, transportation, hotel, etc.?

Answer: Yes, this is allowable if the support group would then be funded by VOCA.  Training registration fees, transportation, lodging, and subsistence costs are allowable expenses.  Please keep in mind transportation, lodging, and subsistence costs must be reimbursed at a rate no greater than the GSA rate for the specific geographical region of travel.

Question: Is it acceptable for the collaborating agency to submit for Administrative Costs?

Answer: Yes, a collaborating agency may submit for reimbursement for administrative costs, provided sufficient justification is submitted to show how these costs support the project.

Question: On the applicant checklist, we have to answer whether our by-laws require an annual audit.  Currently our bylaws do not, but our board informal policy is to conduct annual audits. and several funders do require an annual audit.  My question is:  is it required that our bylaws stipulate annual audits?

Answer: No, your by-laws do not have to stipulate the organization has an annual audit.

Question: Just to clarify- if I am requesting funds to utilize an outside professional to train staff, must I submit a contract between my organization and that professional as part of my application?

 

Answer: Yes, a contract is needed and if available at the time of the application should be attached.  If a contract is not available when applying a condition will be placed on the award  letter and must be fulfilled prior to a draw down of funds for consultant.

Question:Can equipment be purchased through the grant which will be used by another entity which has an MOU for service with victims referred by the agency submitting the RFP?­

Answer: The applicant may purchase the equipment and allow the entity with which they have an MOU to utilize the equipment, provided the applicant agency maintains control over the equipment.

Question:I have a question regarding the budget detail section.  We are writing for two counties and have a budget set up for each one.  For several sections (personnel, consultants, etc.) the same people are providing that service in both counties.  In terms of attachments, would I need to upload the contracts, licenses, job description, etc.  twice (once in each county) or would you prefer I only upload them once and note that in the justification sections?

Answer: Please attach the contracts, licenses, job descriptions, etc., one time only.  The justification section should detail information that pertains to a specific county.   

Question: In either case, if we stay below the threshold in our budget, this is to confirm that we can contract using the Simplified Acquisition threshold?  For purposes of Personal Services Contract, how many rate quotes would be considered acceptable? What kind of documentation would be needed?  

Answer: The minimum adequate number of qualified sources is three.  Acceptable documentation would be any price or rate quotes you have in writing from potential vendors, journal of a listing of the vendors contacted, date of contact, method of contact, parameters of information provided to potential vendors, price or rates quoted, and why a given vendor was selected. 

Question: What happens if you do not use all of the requested funds?

Answer: Subgrantees who do not use the full amount of their awarded funds will forfeit the remaining balance

Question: Would this allow for purchase of bus passes?  

Answer: Yes, bus passed are an allowable expense.  If bus passes are purchased in bulk, the justification section must include the procedures the organization has in place to safe guard the passes, how the passes are accounted for, the assurance the passes are used in conjunction with grant eligible travel expenditures.   

​Question: We have some questions about the procurement issue as it relates to entering into a contract for substance abuse services to be provided to Safe Berks clients.  We recognize that the contract must be with an entity or individual that is a licensed substance abuse provider and we do have several provider’s in our community.  However, we only have one that also provides housing and other resources that our clients would need.  Is the continuum of services available from a provider a justification for using a sole source contract?

If no, on the webinar there was a discussion that if under $150,000 actual bidding is not required but just 3 price quotes.  Is that $150,000 limit for the life of the grant or per annum?  Any clarification on this would be appreciated.  Thank you.
 
Answer: VOCA funding may not be used for in-patient substance abuse therapy, only out-patient substance abuse therapy may be paid for with VOCA funds.  The terms of the contract with the licensed substance abuse provider must spell out specifically what services are to be provided.  
 
Justification for a selecting a vendor on a sole-source basis may include activities/services that are not eligible to be paid for with VOCA funding, provided these additional activities/services are used only as justification as to why the selected vendor was the optimal choice for supplying VOCA eligible services.     
 
 
All subgrantees must adhere to the federal procurement regulations regardless of the service/product to be procured.  The dollar thresholds apply to the life of the project not on an annual basis. 

Question: ­Is this a 2 1/2-year grant? For Personnel section Year One and Year Two could be 52 weeks.  For Year Three shouldn’t it only be the remainder of the grant year? ­

Answer: ­This funding announcement is for 30 months.  For year three, the budget should only account for the time until September 30, 2020.  ­

Question: For the VOCA service impact and victim population section and the VOCA fudning allocation section, is this the percentage of funds under this existing grant application?  Or percentage of allocation under our existing VOCA grant?

Answer: Both sections are referring to what is being applied for in this grant application. 

Question:  ­If you apply for funds for Substance abuse treatment, would those funds be listed under the consultant section of the budget?  And if so, is it listed as the organization and not an individual? ­

Answer:  It will depend on how the agreement is structured if it will be a recipient agency budget, pass through agency budget or consultant under the applicant agency.

Question: Can you say more about non-supplantation? Is it permissible to expand services by moving an existing VOCA funded staff to a new project and replacing them with a new hire under the existing grant?­

Answer: Yes, this would be permissible and not considered supplantation. ­

Question: Can you please provide more information on what percentage of indirect costs are allowable?

Answer: If an organization has an unexpired federally approved indirect cost rate, a percentage up to and including the federally approved indirect cost rate may be charged.  A copy of the organization’s federally approved indirect cost rate letter must be attached to the application.  If the organization never had a federally approved indirect cost rate, the organization may use up to and including the 10% de minimis rate. 

Question:On the webinar silde #60 it shows that “No EEOP certification form is required”.  Can you please expand on what is required?  Does this mean applicants don’t need to submit an EEOP Certification Form to the Office for Civil Rights?  

Answer: The applicant is required to answer in the affirmative all questions contained in the Federal Funding Certification section of the application, with the possible exception of question 1.2.  No, all applicants must submit an EEOP Certification Form to the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) at the federal Office of Justice Programs, the EEOP Certification Form does not need to be attached to the application.    ​




Question:Can you explain more about the pass through process?­

Answer: Pass through agreements are used when an organization contracts with another organization to supply a given set of services, much like a consultant.  A pass-through agreement must be attached to the application.­

Question: Under Supplies and Operating Expenses, is it acceptable to put an estimated yearly amount for small office supplies (pens, pencils, etc) or does that have to be itemized per unit?­

Answer: You may use an estimated annual cost for small office supplies and enter 1 as quantity. ­​

Question: Is the threshold for “Small Purchase Methods” under $150,000? 

Answer: Yes, Small purchase procedures are those relatively simple and informal procurement methods for securing services, supplies, or other property that do not cost more than the Simplified Acquisition Threshold.  If small purchase procedures are used, price or rate quotations must be obtained from an adequate number of qualified sources.

Simplified acquisition threshold (2 CFR 200.88) means the dollar amount below which a non-Federal entity may purchase property or services using small purchase methods.  Non-Federal entities adopt small purchase procedures in order to expedite the purchase of items costing less than the simplified acquisition threshold.  The simplified acquisition threshold is set by the Federal Acquisition Regulation at 48 CFR Subpart 2.1 (Definitions) and in accordance with 41 U.S.C. 1908.  As of the publication of this manual, the simplified acquisition threshold is $150,000, but this threshold is periodically adjusted for inflation.

Question: Has the non-competitive procurement of service changed from a threshold of $10,000 to $3,000?

Answer: There are new procurement procedures which must be followed depending on the dollar amount being expended.  The specifics for each procedure and threshold amount may be found in PCCD's Applicant's Manual at the following link: 

http://www.pccd.pa.gov/Funding/Documents/Applicants%20Manual/Applicant%27s%20Manual%20-%20Current%20Version.pdf, beginning on page 16.

Question: Is pass through funding allowable from a statewide victim services organization to local victim services organization?

Answer: Yes, if an agency is proposing to submit a statewide project, where a pass through contract is included, then a copy of the contract must be submitted within the grant application.  Statewide project must be accessible to all Pennsylvania residents. ​

Question: I just want to clarify that this grant opportunity is a cost reimbursement grant – not a forward funded grant. Is this correct?

Answer: Yes.  The grant is a cost reimbursement grant.  Payments are made on a reimbursement basis.

Question: Please explain third party billing (p. 10 of the funding announcement), and provide examples?

Answer: In this instance third-party billing means billing or having an intermediary bill another party for services provided by a VOCA funded program such as billing an insurance company for services provided by VOCA funded personnel.

Question: Does a subgrantee have to budget the 3 years of the project in equal amounts each year?

Answer: No, the amounts budgeted per year do not have to be in equal amounts. 

Question: I don’t understand Qs 10 and 10.1 under VOCA Eligibility Verification.  At legal aid, we’re bound by the rules of professional conduct, including those pertaining to client confidentiality.  The application will be for an attorney.  Can you help me with this Q&A? Thank you.

Answer: All successful applicants must meet standards established by the relevant oversight organization.  Entities not required to follow the standards of Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape (PCAR), Pennsylvania Coalition Against Domestic Violence (PCADV), National Court Appointed Advocates (NCASA) and/or National Children’s Alliance (NCA), will be required to follow the standards of the Office of Victims’ Services (OVS).  Please see PCCD website for, Consolidated Victim Service Program Standards.    

In the case of civil legal services the applicant must meet PCCD’s Consolidated Victim Service Program Standards and are instructed to select this option.  Civil legal services for victims of crime are provided by professional attorneys and legal staff. As such, all attorneys and those persons supervised by attorneys in the provision of civil legal services to victims of crime are held to the PA Rules of Professional Conduct (PA RPC).​

All services shall be provided in a manner that assures quality, professional and confidential services. All legal staff shall abide by these professional standards:

​​204 PA Code § 81.4. Rules of Professional Conduct 

http://www.pacode.com/secure/data/204/chapter81/s81.4.html

BA Principles of a State System for the Delivery of Civil Legal Aid

http://www.americanbar.org/content/dam/aba/administrative/legal_aid_indigent_defendants/ls_sclaid_atj_tencivilprinciples.authcheckdam.pdf

BA Standards for the Provision of Civil Legal Aid

http://www.americanbar.org/content/dam/aba/administrative/legal_aid_indigent_defendants/ls_sclaid_aba_civillegalaidstds2007.authcheckdam.pdf

BA Standards of Practice for Lawyers Representing Victims of Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault and Stalking in Civil Protection Order Cases

http://www.americanbar.org/content/dam/aba/migrated/domviol/pdfs/0908/Standards_of_Practice_for_Lawyers_Representing_Victims_of_DV_SA_Stalking.authcheckdam.pdf ​



Question:PDAI, a 501c3, provides services (training) to victim service providers, but PDAI does not provide services directly to victims.  Are we eligible to receive this grant?

Answer: Training exclusively for developing the skills of direct service providers, so that they are better able to offer quality direct services, is eligible for VOCA funding.

Question: Are there any additional eligibility requirements for sub-recipients, or is the information detailed in Section 5: Eligible Applicants applicable to both applying organization and sub-recipients?

Answer: A complete description of the eligible applicants for this funding announcement is listed on page 5 under Eligible Applicants.

  

Question: To whom it may concern, My question is regarding my organization’s eligibility.  First however, I’m wondering if it is possible for new applicants to speak directly to a representative from PCCD. We want to make sure that we are eligible before we begin the lengthy process of compiling an application. This Q&A is very helpful and I will be on the WEBX conference call tomorrow, but I’m wondering if there is an opportunity for new applicant agencies to describe their program and receive confirmation that they are at least eligible to apply.

Now, my main question concerns how “component” is intended to be understood in the context of the organization I represent, as well as “principal mission.”   The umbrella organization under which we operate is a public governmental agency. The unit within that umbrella organization, (the unit that would be overseeing the grant), is the “Emergency Preparedness and Response Unit.” Our services reach victims of crime, but are not limited to victims of crime. One of the initiatives based out of the EPRU is a coalition of direct victim service agencies, first responders, and other organizations/agencies that serve individuals and communities impacted by trauma and violence. That coalition seeks to coordinate the efforts of these direct service organizations, an initiative that VOCA is seeking to fund. Another initiative of this unit is the program, “Network of Neighbors Responding to Violence” which is a network of trained volunteer community members who respond to communities in the wake of violent or traumatic incidents (so similar to Keystone) and would fall under VOCA’s definition of crisis intervention to communities impacted by violence. Some of these incidents are criminal, some of them are not (sudden loss of a community member, suicide at a school, etc.)
 
Basically, my question is this: Would the EPRU have to be considered the “component” of the larger umbrella organization? Meaning that the EPRU’s principal mission would have to be the provision of direct services to victims of crime, or could initiatives of the EPRU be in turn “components” that could receive VOCA funding?  Is the difference between a VOCA funded program and a VOCA funded project relevant here?
 
Again, while the FAQ page is helpful, it is my guess that this question will not be posted in its entirety.   If I could ask another question, it would be: “How can new applicants speak directly to a representative to field their organization-specific questions?” Thanks so much.
 
Answer: Due to the competitive nature of these awards, PCCD Program Staff are not permitted to answer questions concerning the content of a proposal, applicant eligibility determination, etc.  Staff will field clarifying questions pertaining to the funding announcement. All questions must be submitted through the following email: Ra-ovs-fundinginfo@pa.gov so that all applicants benefit from the Q&A process.  You may wish to reach out to established victim service providers within your community for clarity and possible collaboration.
 
To determine eligibility, applicants should review the funding announcement under the “Eligible Applicants” section and determine if their agency meets one of the two eligibility criteria.  If an applicant determines they are eligible, they will need to explain how they are eligible within the Applicants Overview section Victims of crime is broadly defined under VOCA and would include secondary exposure to violent crime.

Question: After reviewing the 2018-2020 competitive funding, our county had a question in regards to providing some of the new VOCA eligible services.  If the Protective Services unit (60 years of age and older) would apply for funding, in order to be considered a client would their PS investigation have to be substantiated?

Answer: No, the protective services investigation would not have to be substantiated in order for the victim to receive VOCA eligible services.​

Question: Good afternoon, My coworker and myself are currently in the beginning stages of applying for the 2018-2020 VOCA Competitive Grant.  We have discussed our proposed project with our boss and would like to run it by you in order to make sure our project does not fall into any of the ineligible cost categories. 

First, we are looking to purchase a vehicle and hire 3 employees who would transport victims to and from preliminary hearings.  We would use grant funds for the purchase of the vehicle as well as any costs associated with the vehicle, i.e. gas, repairs, upkeep, etc.  We would also use the funds to pay the employees and send them for the necessary training.  In addition we are looking to purchase gas cards to provide to victims who have transportation to come to court appearance but can’t afford the fuel cost associated with appearing.

Second, we are looking to purchase gift cards from a local hardware store to provide to victims who need to fix damages resulting to their home or vehicle in the commission of the crime they are a victim of.

Third, we would use some of the funds towards the salary of the individual administrating this program. Thank you for any help you can provide.

Answer: VOCA allows for the purchasing or leasing of vehicles - whichever is most economical. Routine maintenance, repair costs and automobile insurance are allowable VOCA costs. A log book must be kept of all vehicle activity and receipts for all expenditures must be maintained. 

The VOCA proposed project will need to articulate all the direct services being provided to crime victims as well as any special training needed to provide the service delivery. These services must be necessary and reasonable. All persons providing direct services to victims of crime are required to have 40 hours of victim- centric, trauma informed training .  Salary of staff administering the VOCA project is allowable, but must be proportionate to their time associated with the delivery of direct services. Job descriptions must be attached to the application and reflect the duties of the employees. 

If the project proposes to pay for allowable victim expenses such as transportation and window, door, or lock replacement or repair, and other repairs necessary to ensure a victims safety, the program will need a written policy and established procedures on the management, approval, and distribution of funds. In addition, the program must maintain a thorough record of all activities related to the administration of funds that reflects their written policy and procedures. At a minimum, records must include documentation of eligibility, distribution of funds, payee and amounts, dates of transactions, approving authorities and any other information deemed applicable by the program’s written policy. Expenditures to repair a victim’s vehicle is not an eligible expense.

Question: Is the cost of the case tracking system an eligible cost under VOCA? Specifically, NCAtrak­.

Answer: Yes, this is allowable on a pro-rated basis if being used for more than VOCA funded project.­​

Question:What would happen to a vehicle purchased for this grant after the 30 months?

Answer: If you get continued VOCA funding, you can use it through that.  If you get other federal funding you can use it through that.  It would still need to be used to provide transportation for crime victims only.­

Question:Would this grant support the purchase of a vehicle to transport victims back and forth to preliminary hearings?   Along with a driver?­

Answer: VOCA allows for the purchasing or leasing of vehicles - whichever is most economical.  The driver of the vehicle must be a trained victim advocate due to having direct contact with crime victims.  Salary for a victim advocate can be paid with VOCA funds. 

Question: Our organization is currently a recipient of a 2016-19 VOCA competitive grant and I’m trying to discover if we’re eligible for additional competitive VOCA funding for a different program/project, or if we are ineligible until our current VOCA competitive grant expires. We are very interested in applying, perhaps on a collaborative project with other service organizations in our area, and I would appreciate any guidance you can provide on this matter.

Answer: Yes you are eligible to apply for a competitive grant even if you currently receive a competitive grant. With respect to the second part of your question, if you are interested in pursuing a collaborative project you should consult other victim service organizations in your area to determine interest in collaboration. You should try to submit either a Memorandum of Understanding, Letter of Understanding or Letter of Support from the proposed collaborators which specifically lists the duties and responsibilities of each party or, in the case of a Letter of Support, whether they will assist by providing referrals to your proposed project.

Question: In the Egrants section on “VOCA FTE” are applicants to enter the current VOCA funding or the amount we anticipate in our grant application?

Answer: Within the Egrants, the VOCA FTE section is referring to this particular VOCA funded project, that an applicant will be applying.  The VOCA funding that would be budgeted for personnel in this application would be what is anticipated for this project.  There are three questions in this section to answer:
1.   What is the number of Paid Full Time Equivalents (FTE's) funded by VOCA? (Provide the TOTAL VOCA funded hours per week -for this VOCA funded project & the Full-time work schedule).
2.   What is the number of VOCA Volunteer Full Time Equivalents (FTE's)? (Provide the TOTAL VOCA funded hours per week -for this VOCA funded project & the Full-time work schedule).
3.   What is the agency's total number of Paid Full Time Equivalents (FTE's) providing victim services (regardless of the funding source; must include both VOCA and Non-VOCA funded staff)?
collapse Funding Announcement Title Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) 2018-2020 Competitive Funding WebEx Recording ‎(2)

Question: How can I view the WebEx recording for the VOCA Competitive Funding Announcement 18-20?

Answer: Below is a link to the WebEx recording. The WebEx is 1 hour and 19 minutes long.  Please click on the link below to begin playing the WebEx. 

Q&A text
collapse Funding Announcement Title 2017 OJJDP SAEDR Research-Based for 2018  ‎(21)

Question:
I am writing to ask a question about the funding announcement made yesterday.  Would college age students be an eligible target group for the funding? 

Answer:
Yes, you may apply for a research-based program that targets college students.

Question:
Our proposed program is SBIRT.  Are we permitted to ask for funds to include the delivery of the program to be through two different delivery methods; in-person and electronically?

Answer:
If both methods are research-based, you may apply for funding for both.  You should discuss the research behind both proposed delivery method in your application.

Question:
Hello, I am reaching out to you seeking clarification on what might constitute as research-based components for this particular grant. I see that Strengthening Families Program 10-14 (SFP 10-14) is included on the Appendix A examples of research-based programs. Our agency is trained in Strengthening Families Program 7-17 (SFP 7-17) which is not included in appendix A. Does SFP 7-17 meet your expectations of research-based or would you recommend we build capacity to offer SFP 10-14?

Answer:  
Appendix A contains a short list of examples of research/evidence-based programs.  It is not meant to be an exhaustive listing of possible programs.  As per page six of the announcement:
 
For Category One Research-Based, PCCD is requiring all applicants demonstrate that their proposed program is research-based and a proven approach.  Prevention, treatment, education, and intervention programs that have been researched will be considered if the programs have reported empirical data indicating convincing evidence of alcohol/drug abuse and behavior change for a sustained period. 
 
In your application’s “Project Design and Implementation” section, you should discuss the research behind your selected program including “a description of the evidence behind the program that shows it is considered research or evidence-based”.  This could be something like “listed on the California Clearinghouse database of programs as {2} – Well supported by Research Evidence”; and “research showed decreases in adolescent male use of cigarettes at six-months.”

Question:
The PCCD manual states that PCCD allows sub grantees to recover indirect costs in one of two ways:

federally approved indirect cost rate
or
10% de minimis rate
Should these two ways be applied to the applicant or the recipient agency?  And if the appropriate agency does not have a federally approved indirect cost rate, is the maximum that should be entered on the budget $2500 which is 10% of the first $25,000 of each sub award?  
 
The indirect rate can be applied to both the applicant and recipient agency to cover overhead expenses appropriate for the proposed project.  If you do not have a federally approved indirect rate, you may use the 10% rate. 

Question:
We currently have funding through PCCD for our Strong African American Families Program.

Are we eligible to apply since we are funded through PCCD for SAAF through 6/30/2018?
 
Answer:
If you will still be on OJJDP funding as on April 1, 2018, you are not eligible for this year’s announcement.

Question:
Regarding these two instructions with the 2017 OJJDP SAEDR Research-Based for 2018: “The application must be submitted with the endorsement of a local non-profit, community-based collaborative board….Applicants must demonstrate that an active collaborative is functioning and will endorse the program that the applicant has selected.  Such demonstration must be in the form of recommendations or conclusions from the most recently completed Risk and Resource Assessment.”  And later…"Identify the data sources used by your sponsoring collaborative board to prepare the Risk and Resource Assessment (RRA) that determined the prioritized RPF and how those RPF were determined. This RRA must have been completed within the last 36-months."  

If we are a coalition made up of several universities throughout the state, and each of those universities have university-community (town gown) coalitions that determine AOD prevention and intervention strategies through a strategic planning process including examination of data, SWOT analysis, and development of strategic plan including research based programs, will this suffice to fulfill the above mentioned instructions?
 
Answer:  
Of the participating universities, the applicant and recipient must be non-profits to be eligible for this funding. If your coalition has conducted a data-driven risk/needs assessment using local data to determine prevention priorities and to select programs within the last three years, that would meet the requirement.  In your application, you should describe the process you followed and the specific data that was used, including where it was obtained.
 

Question:
We recently received non-PCCD funding to train staff and begin implementation of one of the research-based based programs identified in the funding announcement.  Can we apply for this PCCD grant to implement the program, provided that PCCD funds will be used to expand services and will not supplant existing funds?  We have not received PCCD funding in the past for this program.

Answer:  
Since you have not received PCCD funding to implement the proposed program, you are eligible to apply under this announcement.  Please indicate in your application the fact that you are avoiding supplantation and how.

Question:
The current SAEDR Funding announcement has wording about being a current grant recipient would make you ineligible. Is that a grant through any funding stream?

Answer:
If you have a grant that will be active as of March 30, 2018 and that is managed by OJJDP staff, you are not eligible under this funding announcement. If you have a grant managed by a different office at PCCD, you may apply.

Question:
Do original copies of letters of support from appropriate collaborative board need to be delivered through US mail, or is enough to attach them electronically to the application in Egrants?

Answer:
Letters of support can be attached in Egrants; the only document that must be physically mailed is the signature page.

Question:
We are a community behavioral health center that delivers prevention in schools during the school day and do not have a Communities That Care site in our catchment area. We would like to know if the any of the following three entities (I have included their mission statements) would qualify as a collaborating entity for the purposes of this grant according to the language below as it appears on page 5:

"The application must be submitted with the endorsement of a local non-profit, community-based collaborative board. Examples of such boards include, but are not limited to, Delinquency Prevention Policy Boards; a Communities That Care (CTC) site; Balanced and Restorative Justice Teams; and Integrated Children’s Service Plan (ICSP) Teams.”
 
Answer:
To meet the requirement of applications being submitted on behalf of a collaborative, that collaborative must have conducted an assessment of the risks to be addressed, the program needs of the community, and the resources that are or are not present to meet those needs.  This assessment must have been completed within the last 36 months. You should describe the process by which your chosen collaborative board determined the program for which funding is being requested. 

Question:
Where can we learn more about Communities That Care, Delinquency Prevention Boards, Balanced and Restorative Justice Teams, or Integrated Children’s Service Plan Teams in our county?

To learn more about the various coalitions that we are aware of, please reach out to the EPISCenter at EPISCenter@psu.edu.