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									                              U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
                              Office of the Science Advisor

                      Landscape Conservation Cooperatives (LCC)

                                Adaptive Science
    Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number: 15.669 & 15.670

           Notice of Funding Availability and Application Instructions




    Landscape Conservation Cooperatives – National science, conservation
   information, and related conservation decision support tool development
                                   process


I. Description of Funding Opportunity
The USFWS uses a science-based, adaptive framework for setting and achieving cross-program
conservation objectives that strategically address the problems that fish, wildlife, and their
habitats face now and into the future. This framework, called Strategic Habitat Conservation, is
based on the principles of adaptive management and uses population and habitat data, ecological
models, and focused monitoring and assessment efforts to develop and implement strategies that
result in measurable fish and wildlife population outcomes. In addition, by leveraging resources
and strategically targeting science to inform conservation decisions and actions, Landscape
Conservation Cooperatives (LCC) have been established to create a network of partners working
in unison to ensure the sustainability of land, water, wildlife and cultural resources.
Financial assistance will be awarded for projects that address the priority theme areas identified
in section IX of this announcement.

A broad group of states, non-government organizations, academic institutions and federal
agencies, has recognized the need to substantially enhance science and partnerships to adapt to
climate change and other stresses on land, water, ocean, fish, wildlife, and cultural heritage
resources. The complicated and inter-related nature of climate change, land use change, invasive
species, energy development, water withdrawals, and other stresses on our natural and cultural


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resources increasingly demand that resource management actions should be targeted, evaluated
for effectiveness, and better informed by the growing body of science on climate change and its
interaction with other landscape scale stresses. Scientists and resource managers need to have
new and more effective opportunities to collaborate, communicate, and develop scientific
direction to inform resource management.

The Department of the Interior has recognized this challenge and its obligation to work with
partners to address the impacts that climate change and other landscape scale stressors are having
on America’s natural and cultural resources by developing integrated adaptation and mitigation
strategies. In part of its overall response, Secretary Salazar signed a Secretarial Order (No. 3289)
on September 14, 2009 and amended February 22, 2010, entitled, “Addressing the Impacts of
Climate Change on America’s Water, Land, and Other Natural and Cultural Resources.” The
Order established a Department-wide approach for applying scientific tools to increase
understanding of climate change and to coordinate an effective response to its impacts on tribes
and on the land, water, ocean, fish and wildlife, and cultural heritage resources that the




Department manages. As a result, the Department, other federal agencies, states, non-
governmental organizations and others have established 22 Landscape Conservation
Cooperatives (LCC). The LCC’s are landscape-scale applied conservation science partnerships
that will support and enhance on-the-ground conservation efforts by facilitating the production
and dissemination of applied science for resource management decision makers. LCCs may


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consist of Federal, State, Tribal, international, local, and private stakeholders. LCCs will
identify and seek to coordinate among existing relevant conservation partnerships, plans,
agreements, and programs with the specific goals of identifying common needs for information
and sharing information and science.


II. Award Information
This program has no statutory formula. This program has no matching requirements. However,
to the extent possible, recipient in-kind and /or cash match is encouraged. Project period of
performance may be up to three years. This program uses grant agreements and cooperative
agreements. A determination of award instrument (grant or cooperative agreement) will be
based on the level of Federal involvement. A cooperative agreement award should only be used
when substantial Federal involvement is expected. Per 505 DM 2, Section 2.9 substantial
involvement is expected when FWS:
     Participates and collaborates jointly with the recipient partner, volunteer, scientist,
        technician or other personnel, in carrying out the scope of work, training recipient
        personnel, or detailing Federal personnel to work on the project effort;
     Reviews and approves one stage of work before the next stage can begin;
     Reviews and approves proposed modifications or sub-grants, prior to award;
     Helps select project staff or trainees;
     Directs or redirects the work because of interrelationships with other projects;
     Has power to immediately halt an activity if detailed performance specifications are not
        met;
     Limits recipient discretion with respect to scope of work, organization structure, staffing,
        mode of operations and other management processes, coupled with close monitoring or
        operational involvement during performance under the award.

A total estimated amount of $700,000 may be awarded under this announcement for supporting
OSA partners and landscape conservation delivery. The minimum amount for projects is $25,000
and the maximum amount that will be awarded to a project is $250,000. Projects can be
developed with up to a three-year project completion plan but projects with substantial
deliverables in a single year relative to the desired outputs will be preferred.


III. Basic Eligibility Requirements
Eligible Applicants:
All potential applicants are eligible.

Federal law mandates that all organizations applying for Federal financial assistance must have a
valid Dun & Bradstreet Data Universal Number System (DUNS) number and have a current
registration in the Central Contractor Registry (CCR). Exemptions: Individuals submitting an
application on their own behalf and not on behalf of a company or other for-profit entity, State,
local or Tribal government, academia or other type of organization are exempt from registering
in DUNS and CCR. Foreign entities not already registered and applying for an award for less


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than $25,000 for activities to be performed outside the United States are also exempt from
registering in DUNS and CCR.

A. DUNS Registration
   Request a DUNS number online at http://fedgov.dnb.com/webform. U.S.-based
   organizations may also request a DUNS number by telephone by calling the Dun &
   Bradstreet Government Customer Response Center, Monday – Friday, 7 AM to 8 PM CST at
   the following numbers:
           U.S. and U.S Virgin Islands: 1-866-705-5711
           Alaska and Puerto Rico: 1-800-234-3867 (Select Option 2, then Option 1)
           For Hearing Impaired Customers Only call: 1-877-807-1679 (TTY Line)
   Once assigned a DUNS number, organizations are responsible for maintaining up-to-date
   information with Dun & Bradstreet.

B. CCR Registration
   Register with the CCR online at https://www.bpn.gov/ccr/default.aspx. Beginning on or
   about June 1, 2012, applicants needing to register in CCR will be directed to register in CCR
   through the new System for Award Management (SAM) portal at http://sam.gov/. Once
   registered in CCR, organizations must renew and revalidate their CCR registration at least
   every 12 months from the date previously registered. Organizations are strongly urged to
   revalidate their registration as often as needed to ensure that CCR is up to date and in synch
   with changes that may have been made to DUNS and IRS information. If your organization
   does not renew its CCR registration, it will expire. Foreign applicants who wish to be paid to
   a bank account in the United States must enter and maintain valid and current banking
   information in their CCR profile.

C. Excluded Parties
   Entities identified on the Excluded Parties List System (current website is
   https://www.epls.gov; beginning on or about June 1, 2012 will be moved to http://sam.gov)
   as debarred, suspended, proposed for debarment, excluded or disqualified under the non-
   procurement common rule, or otherwise declared ineligible from receiving Federal contracts,
   certain subcontracts, and certain Federal assistance and benefits will not be considered for
   Federal funding.

IV. Application Requirements
To be considered for funding under this funding opportunity, an application must contain:

A. A completed, signed, and dated Application for Federal Assistance (SF-424). The SF-424
   form is available online at http://apply07.grants.gov/apply/FormLinks?family=15.

B. Project Summary
   Briefly summarize the project, in one page or less. Include the title of the project, geographic
   location, LCC Theme addressed by the proposal (see section IX, below), and a brief
   overview of the need for the project, goal(s), objectives, specific project activities,
   beneficiaries, and expected outcomes consistent with this funding opportunity. As
   applicable, describe how you/your organization has coordinated with and involved other


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   relevant organizations or individuals in planning the project, and detail if/how they will be
   involved in conducting project activities and/or disseminating project results.

C. Project Narrative [Maximum of 5 pages - not including curricula vitae for key personnel,
   literature cited, or the map or description of the project area. Use a font size of no smaller
   than 11 points and margins of no less than 1-inch on all sides.]


   1. Statement of Need: Describe why this project is necessary (significance/value) and
      include supporting information. Specifically describe the Theme (see below) and
      component of the theme that the project addresses. Summarize previous or on-going
      efforts (of you/your organization, and other organizations or individuals) relevant to the
      proposed work.

   2. Identify the LCC sponsor(s) of the proposed project: List the LCC name and
      individual LCC staff referenced as sponsor. All projects submitted through this process
      must be sponsored by at least one LCC. Note that some Themes (see section IX below)
      require a minimum of five LCCs as sponsors. Sponsorship simply means that an LCC
      has been provided the opportunity to review the proposal and agrees that it will be of
      benefit to the LCC effort as defined in one of the thematic areas. The concept of
      sponsorship in this context does not equate with endorsement or support of the proposal.
      This is simply a process step that will provide a minimal means of assurance to both the
      author and the LCC community that the proposal will be of benefit to the LCCs. The
      applicant is responsible for contacting the LCC Coordinator or Science Coordinator to
      obtain this sponsorship. Contact information for all LCC staff is found at:
      http://www.fws.gov/science/SHC/lccinfocontacts.html. If an LCC staff cannot be
      contacted, you have questions about the appropriate LCC to contact, or need additional
      information, please contact either Ben Thatcher or Doug Austen (information below).

   3. Project Goals and Objectives: State the long-term goal(s) of the project. Objectives
      are the specific steps to be taken to reach the stated goals. State the objectives of the
      project, which must be specific, measurable, and realistic (attainable within the project’s
      proposed period of performance). State the anticipated outcomes and/or benefits of the
      project.

   4. Project Activities, Methods and Timetable: State the proposed project activities, and
      describe how they relate to the stated project objectives. The proposed project activities
      narrative must be detailed enough for reviewers to make a clear connection between the
      proposed activities and the proposed project costs. For projects being conducted within
      the United States, the narrative must provide enough detail so that reviewers are able to
      determine project compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act, Section 7 of
      the Endangered Species Act, and Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act.
      For projects being conducted on the high seas, the narrative should provide enough detail
      so that reviewers are able to determine project compliance with Section 7 of Endangered
      Species Act. Provide a detailed description of the method(s) to be used to carry out each
      activity. Provide a timetable indicating roughly when activities or project milestones are
      to be accomplished. Include any resulting tables, spreadsheets or flow charts within the

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       body of the proposal narrative (do not include as separate attachments). The timetable
       should not propose specific dates but instead group activities by month for each month
       over the entire proposed project period.

   5. Anticipated Products/Outputs: Describe any expected project products/outputs. Once
      identified, describe the intended impact of the products/outputs on the target resource.
      Detail if/how products will be distributed to resource managers, researchers and other
      interested parties. Detail any applicability of the project methods/activities/outcomes to
      other projects.

   6. Project Monitoring and Evaluation: The project must incorporate a monitoring and
      evaluation plan that will allow proponent to ascertain the quality of benefits and outputs
      and to ensure that the benefits/outputs reach the intended beneficiaries. Describe how
      you/your organization (or others) will monitor project progress and measure the project’s
      impacts. Include details on how you/your organization will assess progress towards
      reaching objectives, and, as applicable, how project participants and beneficiaries will
      participate in these activities.

   7. Description of Organization(s) Undertaking the Project: Provide a brief description of
      the applicant organization and all cooperating entities and/or individuals. Identify which
      of the proposed activities each agency, organization, group, or individual is responsible
      for conducting or managing. Provide complete contact information for individual within
      your organization that will oversee/manage the project activities on a day-to-day basis.
      This is the person commonly referred to as the Project Officer or Project Manager. If
      eligibility for funding is based in whole or in part on the qualifications of key personnel,
      provide brief (1-2 pages) curricula vitae for key personnel, identifying their
      qualifications to meet the project objectives. Do not include Social Security numbers,
      the names of family members, or any other personal or sensitive information on the
      curricula vitae!

   8. Sustainability: As applicable, detail which of the proposed project activities are expected
      to continue beyond the life the proposed project period, and the expectation of how and at
      what level these future activities will be funded.

   9. Literature Cited

   10. Map or Description of Project Area: Map or description should clearly indicate the
       geographic area for both project focus and ability to extrapolate information.

D. A completed Budget Information for Non-Construction Programs (SF-424A) or Budget
   Information for Construction Programs (SF-424C) form. Use the SF-424A if your
   project does not include construction and the 424C if it does include construction. The
   budget forms are available online at http://apply07.grants.gov/apply/FormLinks?family=15.




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   When developing your budget, keep in mind the following:

      Cost Principles: Financial assistance awards and subawards are subject to OMB Circulars
       A-122, Cost Principles for Non-Profit Organizations (2 CFR Part 230), A-21, Cost
       Principles for Educational Institutions (2 CFR Part 220), and A-87, Cost Principles for
       States and Local Governments (2 CFR Part 225), as applicable to the recipient
       organization type. These OMB circulars are available online at
       http://www.doi.gov/pam/financialassistance/resources/index.html.

      Federally Funded Equipment: Applicants cannot attribute equipment paid for by the U.S.
       Federal Government under another award as matching or in-kind contributions. Do not
       include this type of equipment in your budget! Instead, provide a separate list of any
       equipment paid for by the U.S. Federal Government that will be used for the project,
       including the name of the Federal agency that paid for the equipment.

      Indirect Costs: An applicant without an established indirect cost rate agreement with a
       Federal agency may not charge indirect costs to Federal financial assistance awards and
       must charge all costs directly. Individuals submitting an application on their own behalf
       and not on behalf of a company or other for-profit entity, state, local or tribal
       government, academia or other type of organization must charge all costs directly.

       If indirect costs are included on proposed budget, the applicant must submit copy of their
       most recently submitted/approved indirect cost rate agreement. Non-profit organizations
       that have received, or expect to receive, the greatest amount of Federal funding in direct
       awards from the Department of the Interior, should go to
       http://www.aqd.nbc.gov/Services/ICS.aspx for online guidance and tools for submitting
       an indirect cost rate agreement proposal to the Department of the Interior. Organizations
       may also contact the National Business Center directly at:

              Indirect Cost Services
              Acquisition Services Directorate, National Business Center
              U.S. Department of the Interior
              2180 Harvard Street, Suite 430
              Sacramento, CA 95815
              Phone: 916.566.7111 Fax: 916.566.7110
              Email: ics@nbc.gov

       All other types of applicants except individuals should contact the USFWS program point
       of contact identified in the Grants.gov funding opportunity with any questions on how to
       establish an indirect cost rate agreement with a Federal agency.

E. Assurances
   Include the appropriate signed and dated Assurances form available online at
   http://apply07.grants.gov/apply/FormLinks?family=15. Use the Assurances for Non-
   Construction Programs (SF-424B) if your project does not involve construction. Use the
   Assurances for Construction Programs (SF-424D) if it does involve construction.


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F. Disclosure of Lobbying Activities
   Under Title 31 of the United States Code, Section 1352, applicants must complete and submit
   with their application the SF-LLL Disclosure of Lobbying Activities form (available online
   at http://apply07.grants.gov/apply/forms/sample/SFLLL-V1.1.pdf ) when they have made
   payment or have agreed to make payment to any lobbying entity for influencing or
   attempting to influence an officer or employee of any agency, a Member of Congress, an
   officer or employee of Congress, or an employee of a Member of Congress in connection
   with the awarding of or the extension, continuation, renewal, amendment, or modification of
   any Federal contract, grant, cooperative agreement, or loan. Recipients may not use funds
   awarded under a Federal grant or cooperative agreement to conduct such lobbying activities.

G. Statement Regarding A-133 Single Audit Reporting: Following OMB Circular A-133
   (http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/omb/assets/a133/a133_revised_2007.pdf),
   domestic entities expending $500,000 USD or more in Federal award funds in a year must
   submit an A-133 Single Audit report for that year through the Federal Audit Clearinghouse’s
   Internet Data Entry System. State if your organization was/was not required to submit an A-
   133 Single Audit report last year (either your organization is a non-U.S. entity or a domestic
   entity that did not spend $500,000 USD or more in Federal funds last year). If your
   organization was required to submit an A-133 Single Audit report last year, state if that
   report is available on the Federal Audit Clearinghouse Single Audit Database website
   (http://harvester.census.gov/sac/).

                                     Application Checklist
   □   A complete, signed and dated SF 424-Application for Federal Assistance
   □   Project Summary and Narrative text and attachments
   □   A complete SF-424A or SF-424C Budget Information form
   □   If Federally funded equipment will be used for the project, a list of that equipment as
       described in section D above
   □   If indirect costs are included in proposed budget, a copy of the organization’s current
       approved indirect cost rate agreement or proposal
   □   Signed and dated SF-424B or SF-424D Assurances form
   □   If applicable, completed SF-LLL form
   □   Statement regarding applicability of and compliance with OMB Circular A-133 Single
       Audit Reporting as described in section G above

Failure to provide complete information, as outlined above, may cause delays, postponement, or
rejection of the application.

V. Submission Instructions
Proposals may be submitted by mail, by email, electronically through Grants.gov, or as
otherwise described in the Grants.gov funding opportunity. Please select ONE of the submission
options. The deadline for submissions is July 15 by 5pm EDT.



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To submit a proposal by mail:
Number all pages of your printed proposal. Mail one, single-sided, unbound copy (do not staple
or otherwise permanently bind pages) of your complete proposal to the USFWS program point of
contact (Ben Thatcher or Doug Austen) identified in the Grants.gov funding opportunity.

To submit a proposal by e-mail:
Format all of your documents to print on Letter size (8 ½” x 11”) paper. Format all pages to
display and print page numbers. Scanned documents should be scanned in Letter format, as
black and white images only. Where possible, save scanned documents in .pdf format. E-mail
your proposal to the USFWS program point of contact (Ben Thatcher or Doug Austen) identified
in the Grants.gov funding opportunity.

To submit a proposal in Grants.gov:
Go to the Grants.gov Apply for Grants page
(http://www07.grants.gov/applicants/apply_for_grants.jsp) for an overview of the process to
apply for grant opportunities on Grants.gov. In order to apply for a grant, you/your organization
must complete the Grants.gov registration process. Registration can take between three to five
business days or as long as two weeks if all steps are not completed in a timely manner.

Important note on Grants.gov application attachment file names: Please do not assign
application attachments file names longer than 20 characters, including spaces. Assigning file
names longer than 20 characters will create issues in the automatic interface between Grants.gov
and the USFWS’ new financial assistance management system.

VI. APPLICATION REVIEW
Criteria:
Recommendations for funding will be based on an evaluation of proposals against the following
general criteria:

          Applicability and Relevancy to the Themes Described in Section IX (40%) –
           (Please be sure to review the Statement of Need, Desired Proposals, and Desired
           Results/Expected Benefits sections of the theme(s) your proposal is addressing)
          Soundness of Design / Technical Feasibility / Scientific Merit (25%) – Is there a
           clear statement of project objectives, explanation of what the project will accomplish
           and why it is important for the LCC Network? Have the applicants demonstrated a
           clear understanding of the problem being addressed, the present state of knowledge in
           the field, and the project’s relation to other work? Is there sufficient information to
           evaluate the project technically? What are the strengths and/or weaknesses of the
           technical design relative to securing productive results? Is there an assessment of
           project uncertainties and how they could impact the success of the project? Have the
           applicants clearly described the form or manner in which the work’s products will be
           made available so as to be most readily used?
          Applicant Capability to Satisfactorily Complete Project (15%) - Does the
           proposal demonstrate that the applicant is capable of successfully completing the
           project, taking into account such factors as the applicant’s 1) past performance in
           successfully completing projects similar in size, scope and relevance to the proposed


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           project, 2) organizational experience and plan for timely and successfully achieving
           the objectives of the project, 3) staff expertise/qualifications, staff knowledge, and
           resources or the ability to obtain them, to successfully achieve the objectives of the
           project, and 4) other factors as relevant.
          Timeline and Costs (15%) - Is there a clear table detailing appropriate timelines and
           associated measurable milestones, objectives, accomplishments, and deliverables that
           can be used to track and evaluate project performance through the entire award
           period? Is the time line realistic and has a high probability of being met? Is the
           justification and allocation of the budget, in terms of the work to be performed,
           unreasonably high or low?
          Matching Funds (5%): Although match is not a requirements, projects with match
           will be provided additional points in scoring. Match must be directly relevant to the
           proposed work.

Review and Selection Process:
Proposals will be evaluated by using a tiered evaluation approach. Proposals that are not
sponsored by at least one LCC (please see section C.2. above) will not be reviewed further.
Proposals receiving further review will be evaluated with respect to the five criteria listed above.
High ranking proposals will then be evaluated with respect to additional criteria, including: the
breadth and magnitude of benefit to the LCC Network; and the degree of impact to the capacity
of the LCCs and the associated partner organizations to conduct landscape conservation.

Ultimately, a suite of proposals for funding will be selected in consideration of the individual
project evaluations, the value of the final suite of selections to the LCC Network, and the ability
of the final suite of selections to provide the best foundation for the LCC Network to meet its
conservation goals. The result may be that proposals are not funded in all thematic areas and/or
that multiple proposals are funded within one or more themes.

USFWS staff will notify applicants of review results by either issuing a fully executed Award
either electronically or through the mail, or by sending written notification to the applicant that
the application will not be funded.

VII. Award Administration
Award Notices: Following review, applicants may be requested to revise the project scope
and/or budget before a final award can be made. Successful applicants will receive written
notice in the form of a Notice of Award document. Notice of Award documents are typically
sent to recipients by e-mail. If e-mail notification is unsuccessful, the documents will be sent by
courier mail (FedEx, DHL, Airborne Express). Award recipients are not required to sign/return
the Notice of Award document. Acceptance of an award is defined as starting work, drawing
down funds, or receiving the award via electronic means. Awards are based on the application
submitted to, and as approved by, the USFWS. Applicants whose projects are not selected for
funding will receive written notice, most often by e-mail, within 30 days of the final review
decision.

Domestic Recipient Payments:



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Prior to an award being issued to you/your organization, the USFWS program office will contact
you/your organization to either enroll in the U.S. Treasury’s Automated Standard Application for
Payments (ASAP) system or, if eligible, submit to the USFWS program a request to obtain
approval from the Department of the Interior to be waived from using ASAP.

Domestic applicants subject to the CCR requirements (see Section I above) who receive a waiver
from receiving funds through ASAP must enter and maintain valid and current banking
information in their CCR profile. Domestic applicants exempt from the CCR requirements who
receive a waiver from receiving funds through ASAP will be required to submit their banking
information directly to the USFWS program. However, do NOT submit any banking
information to the USFWS until it is requested from you by the USFWS program!

Recipients are responsible for ensuring any sensitive data being sent to the USFWS is protected
during its transmission/delivery. The USFWS strongly recommends recipients use the most
secure transmission/delivery method available. The USFWS recommends the following digital
transmission methods: secure digital faxing; encrypted emails; emailing a password protected
zipped/compressed file attachment in one email followed by the password in a second email; or
emailing a zipped/compressed file attachment. The USFWS strongly encourages recipients
sending sensitive data in paper copy to use a courier mail service. Recipients may also contact
their USFWS Project Officer and provide any sensitive data over the telephone.

The Notice of Award document from the USFWS will include instructions specific to each
recipient on how to request payment. If applicable, the instructions will detail any additional
information/forms required and where to submit payment requests.

Foreign Recipient Payments:
Foreign recipients receiving funds to a bank outside of the United States must be paid
electronically through U.S. Treasury’s International Treasury Services (ITS) system.

Foreign recipients receiving funds electronically to a bank in the United States must be paid by
Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) through the Automated Clearing House network. Foreign
recipients subject to the CCR requirements (see Section I above) to be paid by EFT must enter
and maintain valid and current banking information in their CCR profile. Foreign recipients
exempt from the CCR requirements to be paid EFT will be required to submit their banking
information directly to the USFWS program. However, do NOT submit any banking
information to the USFWS until it is requested from you by the USFWS program!

Recipients are responsible for ensuring any sensitive data being sent to the USFWS is protected
during its transmission/delivery. The USFWS strongly recommends recipients use the most
secure transmission/delivery method available. The USFWS recommends the following digital
transmission methods: secure digital faxing; encrypted emails; emailing a password protected
zipped/compressed file attachment in one email followed by the password in a second email; or
emailing a zipped/compressed file attachment. The USFWS strongly encourages recipients
sending sensitive data in paper copy to use a courier mail service. Recipients may also contact
their USFWS Project Officer and provide any sensitive data over the telephone.



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The Notice of Award document from the USFWS will include instructions specific to each
recipient on how to request payment. If applicable, the instructions will detail any additional
information/forms required and where to submit payment requests.

Standard Award Terms and Conditions:
Acceptance of a Federal Financial Assistance award from the Department of the Interior (DOI)
carries with it the responsibility to be aware of and comply with the terms and conditions of
award. The text of all standard award terms and conditions are available online at
http://www.doi.gov/pam/TermsandConditions.html. Acceptance is defined as starting work,
drawing down funds, or accepting the award via electronic means. Awards are based on the
application submitted to, and as approved by DOI and are subject to the terms and conditions
incorporated either directly or by reference in the following:
     Program legislation/regulation
      Special terms and conditions
      Code of Federal Regulations/Regulatory Requirements, as applicable:
           − 2 CFR Part 25 Central Contractor Registration and Data Universal Numbering
             System
           − 2 CFR Part 170 Reporting Subawards and Executive Compensation
           − 2 CFR Part 1400 Government-wide Debarment and Suspension (Non-
             procurement)
           − 2 CFR Part 1401 Requirements for Drug-Free Workplace (Financial Assistance)
           − 2 CFR Part 175 Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000
           − 43 CFR 12(A) Administrative and Audit Requirements and Cost Principles for
             Assistance Programs
           − 43 CFR 12(C) Uniform Administrative Requirements for Grants and Cooperative
             Agreements to State and Local
           − 43 CFR 12(F) Uniform Administrative Requirements for Grants and Cooperative
             Agreements with Institutions of Higher Education, Hospitals, other Non-Profit
             and Commercial Organizations
           − 43 CFR 18 New Restrictions on Lobbying
           − 305 DM 3, Integrity of Scientific and Scholarly Activities and 217 FW 7,
             Scientific Integrity and Scholarly Conduct. Grant and cooperative agreement
             recipients must ensure quality project results. Results must consist of unbiased
             assessments through proper management and enforcement of scientific integrity
             standards, which includes avoiding conflicts of interest as defined in USFWS
             policy 212 FW 7 (complete text available online at
             http://www.fws.gov/policy/212fw7.html).

Recipient Financial and Performance Reporting Requirements:
Interim financial reports and performance reports may be required. Interim reports will be
required no more frequently than quarterly, and no less frequently than annually. A final


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financial report and a final performance report will be required and are due within 90 calendar
days of the end date of the award. Performance reports must contain: 1) a comparison of actual
accomplishments with the goals and objectives of the award as detailed in the approved scope of
work; 2) a description of reasons why established goals were not met, if appropriate; and 3) any
other pertinent information relevant to the project results. The USFWS will specify the
performance reporting frequency applicable to the award in the Notice of Award document.

VIII. Agency Contacts
Headquarters Office:
Ben Thatcher or Doug Austen, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 4401 N Fairfax Dr, Room 222 ,
Arlington, Virginia 22203
Email: ben_thatcher@fws.gov; Phone: 703-358-2060
Email: doug_austen@fws.gov; Phone: 703-358-1953
Website Address:
http://www.fws.gov/science/
http://www.fws.gov/science/shc/lcc.html

IX. Funding Themes and supporting material




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Theme A - Synthesis Products to Advance National LCC Network
Coordination and Function
Statement of Need: The LCC Network is in need of common sets of processes and tools to
inform and support landscape-scale conservation planning, climate change adaptation, and
effectiveness measurement. Many such processes and tools exist, but determining which are best
suited to the LCC enterprise requires familiarity with an extensive technical literature and
communities of practice. These may not be accessible to most LCC staff, precluding selection
and adoption of the best options. Acknowledging this, the LCC Network has to date funded
syntheses and “best practice” assessments for climate model downscaling and scenario planning.
Additional synthesis products may function to introduce the LCC network, and stakeholders, to
unfamiliar but potentially useful techniques from a variety of disciplines, to assess the utility of
existing tools under various circumstances, and to guide development of new methods in light of
lessons learned or where no current ones are adequate to support LCC tasks.

Desired Proposals: Proposals addressing this theme will create a product that allows LCCs to
select or adopt optimal products, processes, or techniques to accomplish LCC goals. Proposals
may include, but are not limited to, the following:
     Assessing and synthesizing approaches and products for biological planning,
        conservation design, and/or other LCC-relevant components of strategic large-scale
        conservation planning (i.e., those currently being used by LCCs and/or those exhibiting
        potential for this application);
     A comparison and decision guide for selecting landscape conservation planning software
        (e.g., Miradi) for LCC-relevant planning;
     A comparison and decision guide for selecting among alternative methods (e.g., scenario
        planning, projection, overlay) that account for the impacts of future change (e.g., invasive
        species, urbanization, climate change) and multiple resource perspectives (e.g., birds,
        fish, water quality) in identifying and prioritizing areas that are important for
        conservation.
     A survey and comparison of methods of measuring effectiveness of landscape-scale
        conservation actions.

Desired Results/Expected Benefits:
1. Successful proposals will create products that allow individual LCCs, regional groups of
LCCs, or the LCC network as a whole to adopt practices or technologies that effectively create
or communicate actionable information for managers and other stakeholders.
2. By surveying and summarizing the current state of knowledge, technique, or
technology/software, and proposing selection criteria or best practices, such projects would
dramatically reduce duplication of effort and the risk of LCCs adopting a patchwork of
contrasting or incompatible practices.




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Theme B - Addressing Existing Needs Identified by National or Large-scale
Conservation Efforts

Statement of Need:
The Landscape Conservation Cooperatives (LCC) recognizes that there are a number of existing
conservation efforts that work nationally or at large regional scales. These may include but are
not limited to:
     National Fish Habitat Action Plan (NFHAP; www.fishhabitat.org)
     Migratory Bird Joint Ventures (JV;
        http://www.fws.gov/birdhabitat/JointVentures/index.shtm )
     Partners in Amphibian and Reptile Conservation (http://www.parcplace.org/)
     National Phenology Network (NPN; http://www.usanpn.org/ )
     Science and information needs identified in key national reports such as the State of the
        Birds Report (http://www.stateofthebirds.org/)
     Large existing regional conservation efforts that transcend multiple LCCs

Many of these large-scale efforts have completed thorough assessments of the research and
information needs that are limiting their conservation efforts or that would support enhanced
efficiency of their conservation planning and implementation. Because a fundamental premise
of the LCCs is to build upon existing large-scale conservation efforts, the LCCs will support
advancement of well-defined needs that are clearly LCC-relevant and will entertain proposals
that reflects these needs. Note: In order to ensure and demonstrate the direct relevancy of the
work to the LCC Network, submitted proposals under this theme must include statements of
sponsorship by at least five LCCs. Please see instructions and contact information on
sponsorship in section C.2., above. Please note that the sponsorship requirement attests to a
minimal level of relevance but the author(s) should also describe how the project is relevant to at
least five LCCs.

Desired Proposals: Successful proposals would be clearly built upon existing statements of
need by national or large-scale conservation efforts, programs, or alliances. Proposals may
include, but are not limited to, the following:

      Research, information, decision tool development or other needs specifically defined
       through a completed and structured process by an existing large-scale conservation effort.
      Workshops, synthesis papers, or other activities that are designed to address specific
       objectives identified as key needs to advance conservation planning, coordination,
       monitoring, or other needs as identified by existing national assessments. Any products
       of these efforts must result in tangible guidance, recommendations, or other actionable
       outputs.
      Development of enhanced monitoring design and coordination that supports an adaptive
       management (strategic habitat conservation) framework at the large-scale conservation
       level.




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Desired Results/Expected Benefits:
The proposals anticipated in this thematic area are expected to benefit the initiating
organization(s) and to strengthen the work of the LCCs. The original framing of the LCCs, for
example, include recognition of the existing work of the Migratory Bird Joint Ventures, State
Wildlife Action Plans, and the National Fish Habitat Action Plan, among many other existing
programs. Each of these conservation efforts has developed thoughtful and strategic science and
information need statements. By advancing this body of work, the LCCs can further their
conservation efforts and fill in critical gaps without having to recreate previously completed
science needs assessments.




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Theme C - Development of Performance Measures for Landscape
Conservation and the LCCs

Statement of Need:
The Landscape Conservation Cooperatives (LCC) are highly collaborative partnerships
involving a wide variety of federal and state agencies, non-governmental organizations, tribes
and others. The LCC’s vision is to develop conservation science and create a forum of
conservation planning that will ensure that we have fully functional landscapes supporting our
natural and cultural resources for future generations. Each of the 22 individual LCCs and the
national network of all LCCs are expected to document how they are contributing to
accomplishing this vision both within individual LCCs, and as a complete network.
Congressional committee report language underscores this need, “The conferees support these
efforts but also expect the Service to establish clear goals, objectives and measurable outcomes
for LCCs that can be used as benchmarks of success of the program”. The Office of
Management and Budget has similarly requested a more mature and appropriate set of
performance measures for the LCCs. Current LCC performance measures have been developed
at several levels:

At the level of the Department of Interior the following “Priority Goal” has been established
(note that it applies more broadly than just to LCCs) – By September 30, 2013, for 50 percent of
the Nation, the Department of the Interior will identify resources that are particularly vulnerable
to climate change and implement coordinated adaptation response actions.

Within the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the following performance goals have been
established in two categories that reflect the two funding codes:

Cooperative Landscape Conservation
1. Number of LCCs formed.
2. Number of LCCs operational.
3. Number of LCCs with a management/operating plan in place.
4. Number of decision-support tools provided to conservation managers to inform management
   plans/decisions and Endangered Species Act (ESA) recovery plans.
5. Number of conservation delivery strategies and actions evaluated for effectiveness.
6. Number of landscape-scale conservation strategies developed (including explicit species-
   specific, scalable populations objectives and adaptation approaches) that can direct
   management expenditures where they have the greatest effect and lowest relative cost.

Adaptive Science
1. Number of risk and vulnerability assessments developed or refined for priority species or
   areas.
2. Number of inventory and monitoring protocols developed, refined or adopted to capture data
   on priority species addressed in LCC work plans that are expected to be vulnerable to climate
   change.
3. Number of population and habitat assessments developed or refined to inform predictive
   models for changes in species populations and habitats as a result of climate change.


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4. Number of biological planning and conservation design projects developed in response to
   climate change.
5. Number of management actions evaluated for effectiveness in response to climate change
   and research activities conducted to address information needs in response to climate change.
6. Number of conservation genetics projects to improve and enhance conservation design and
   delivery for fish and wildlife populations in response to climate change.

These performance measures were created in the very early stages of LCC development, and
though they reflect a set of activities that the LCCs are involved with, they do not reflect some of
the core roles of LCCs. Further, they are heavily oriented towards climate change issues, don’t
reflect the full suite of LCC activities, and are written for DOI agencies most notably for the
FWS.

To begin development of performance measures that could be used across the diverse LCC
partnerships a performance measures work group has been established. Initially, this group is
staffed by LCC Coordinators from DOI agencies and representatives from the FWS Division of
Cost and Performance Management. This group will begin by reviewing FWS performance
measures and recommending revised and new measures that provide meaningful measures of
performance for FWS. These FWS measures will be used as templates for development of
performance measures appropriate for other DOI agencies. The FWS and DOI measures will be
used to generate performance measures for LCCs that can be accepted and used by individual
LCCs and the LCC network.

Desired Proposals: Funding recipients would develop a comprehensive synthesis paper on the
application of performance measures to landscape conservation efforts and would communicate
the key findings to the LCC working group on performance measures. This should include:
       a. A review and assessment of a wide variety of existing landscape efforts that describe,
           compare, contrast and evaluate the existing application of large-scale conservation
           performance measures. This should include evaluating comparable efforts in other
           sectors (e.g., industry, health) with similar identification of relevant efforts with
           analysis of efficacy and application. This should also include assessing (or taking
           into account) the types of work the LCCs are doing and plan to do so that when
           performance measures are developed they will account for regional variation while
           being broadly applicable across the LCCs.
       b. Provide a set of recommendations based upon that assessment. Resulting work
           should address one or more of the following: (1) descriptions of performance
           measures and approaches that worked, and also that didn’t work, from the example
           entities, and (2) examples or processes that led to meaningful performance measures
           that reflect programmatic success, and (3) clear definition of how to define success at
           the level of large-scale conservation; e.g., ecological, social, political.
       c. Provide seminars, workshops, or other training to the LCC working group on
           performance measures to transfer research findings to work group for incorporation
           into their efforts.




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Desired Results/Expected Benefits:
1. Results of this work should support the development of LCC performance measures that
   move from the current “output” model to an “outcome” based approach. The result should
   be “meaningful, quantifiable indicators of performance” that measure success of the LCC
   enterprise. A more appropriate set of performance measures for the FWS funding
   appropriation for the LCCs will allow for an improved understanding of funding impacts and
   provide a mechanism for projecting the ramifications of budget increases or decreases.
2. Performance measures developed for FWS LCC investments may be applicable, with
   appropriate modifications, to other bureaus that provide funds to the LCCs.
3. It is expected that performance measures will be scalable and be able to be rolled up from the
   most direct application of individual actions within an LCC, to the complete set of actions of
   LCC Network.




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Theme D - Enhancing Landscape Planning and Ensuring Compatible
Landscape Planning across the National LCC Network
Statement of Need
A key function of LCCs is to integrate priorities across resource perspectives. For example, at
the level of the individual LCC, a key role is the development of common conservation goals and
the development of tools and strategies to inform landscape-scale planning and management
decisions. At the scale of the National LCC Network, the goal is to provide a forum for national
and international conservation planning, integrate the efforts of the 22 LCCs, and to facilitate
efforts across and among individual LCCs. Importantly, a role of an LCC partner is to define
and share individual large-scale conservation priorities to help shape a common landscape-scale
conservation framework for science and conservation actions. This is all accomplished while
fully respecting the individual authorities and responsibilities of the LCC partners and is
intended to support their achievement of conservation goals that can only be attained through a
landscape approach.

However, designing a landscape that sustains the multitude of species, habitats, and processes
that we value is a monumental organizational and technical challenge. This needs to happen
within an individual LCC but, critically, it must take place seamlessly across LCCs. Currently,
individual LCCs are exploring alternative means of overcoming these conservation planning
challenges. While this diversity of approaches is welcomed from the perspective of innovation,
it also has the potential to undermine the ability of the LCCs to fully function as a seamless
network. Thus, there is an immediate need to develop explicit linkages among potentially
divergent approaches now to ensure that there are not incompatibilities in terms of resolution,
scope, or scale of the outputs later.

Conservation planning at large scales is not a new exercise. Large scale conservation has been
addressed by organizations such as The Nature Conservancy through their ecoregional planning,
in several large conservation efforts such as the Everglades, Crown of the Continent, and
Chesapeake Bay, and through state-based exercises such as the State Wildlife Action Plans. A
situation of comparable challenge is being addressed by the Western Governors’ Association
Wildlife Council through the development of eight separate Crucial Habitat Assessment Tools
(CHAT) that must have consistent definitions in order to be inter-operable.

The LCCs need to have a full understanding of conservation planning tools and processes,
including those developed by key partners. Similarly, the LCCs need to be able to understand
and integrate across the existing assessments within their geographies, in order to identify and
address gaps and ultimately arrive at landscape designs that sustain natural and cultural
resources. Further, the LCCs need to develop a network-wide community of practice and
standards that account for regional variation while supporting the development of planning
products that are compatible, interoperable, and seamless across the landscape.




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Desired Proposals: Funding recipients would complete the following types of projects for the
LCC Network:

1. Assessment and synthesis of existing LCC biological planning and conservation design
   approaches and products, and the framing and development of workshops, documents, tools,
   or other products to increase the capacity of LCCs to conduct effective biological planning
   and conservation design, and to facilitate sharing of best practices across the LCC Network.
2. Working in consultation with the LCCs, develop best practices, or other guidance that will
   ensure that individual LCC conservation plans and products are compatible, interoperable,
   and seamless with adjacent LCCs.
3. Development of synthesis papers, workshops, or other learning tools to raise the level of
   technical knowledge of LCC Conservation Science staff about landscape planning. Forums
   or workshops to convene key partners, experts, and practitioners to share practices, develop
   new approaches, and develop a community of practice in support the LCC biological
   planning and conservation design process.

Desired Results/Expected Benefits:
1. Development of state-of-the-art frameworks and approaches that improve the ability of LCCs
   to conduct landscape planning and design, and that are sufficiently compatible, interoperable,
   and seamless across the network of LCCs. This needs to be accomplished while
   simultaneously supporting the ability of individual LCCs to account for regional variation in
   landscape context, resources, threats, and partner needs and concerns.
2. Full engagement by the LCC partners through planning tools that embrace their individual
   landscape planning goals and objectives and that integrates these into a larger landscape level
   approach that reflects common objectives and that produces conservation results that are of
   greater benefit to the partners than would be obtained through discrete, independent planning
   efforts.




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Theme E - LCC Network-wide Data Integration and Dissemination

Statement of Need:
Coordinated data management, development and delivery in support of landscape conservation
efforts of the LCC partners are critical needs of the Landscape Conservation Cooperatives. The
National LCC Network identified data management as a priority theme to be addressed via a
coordinated working group at the National LCC Meeting in April 2011. Further, coordinated
data management and delivery is identified as a key need in the Department of Interior’s
guidance documents including “Interior’s Plan for a Coordinated Science-based Response to
Climate Change Impacts on our Land, Water, and Wildlife Resources”
(http://www.doi.gov/csc/upload/Detailed-LCC-and-CSC-Information.pdf). Several LCCs have
developed or are developing data management and integration platforms, yet there is sub-optimal
coordination among various efforts. Several LCCs have also identified development and
updating of key national datasets as necessary to support their conservation efforts. The need for
coordination involves a comprehensive solution for data identification, discovery, acquisition,
application, and delivery.

Desired Proposals:
The National LCC Network seeks proposals that will support LCC conservation science and
planning efforts through improved availability and dissemination of information on ecological,
biological, cultural, and other relevant features. This includes data describing climate change
impact and vulnerability, as well as access and decision-support to scientists, resource managers,
decision makers, and the general public. The National LCC Network seeks to support the
Secretary’s Climate Change Response Council by promoting data sharing and science
collaboration among the broadest possible partnership, developing mechanisms for data and
information management, and preventing duplication of effort among the national network of
LCCs. Specifically, the Office of the Science Advisor is seeking proposals which address:

   1. Information management processes that facilitate LCC science product (e.g., project
      proposals, reports, data, models, toolboxes, decision tools) submission, storage, and
      dissemination, or project tracking, potentially including integrated quality-control support
      and documentation to science product development. This could include an assessment of
      current LCC project tracking, data needs identification, or expansion or further
      development of existing information management applications that provide the necessary
      capabilities. The system should be broadly applicable across the network of LCCs and
      interoperable with the USGS National Climate Change and Wildlife Science Center
      (NCCWSC) project management system.

   2. Information management system expansion to accumulate and deliver foundational data,
      conduct data gap assessments, provide repository and tracking mechanisms for modeling,
      research, or other science. Proposals addressing this need can include activities such as
      expansion of an existing natural resource information system that is currently utilized or
      directly applicable to multiple LCCs and that can be more broadly utilized by the entire
      LCC Network, or a broader partnership. Systems or applications of interest here would
      address:



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           a. Development or modification of a platform or virtual workspace to support
              landscape development, application , and delivery of planning tools, models,
              training, decision support tools and other cross-jurisdictional science and
              management efforts.
              Note: this is not a call for specific tool development which is addressed by
              Theme A in this solicitation; here we are seeking an integrated workspace that
              supports shared model and tool development.
           b. Expansion or integration of multiple existing (and future) information resources in
              support of LCC efforts. Target data resources should be broadly applicable to at
              least five LCCs but supporting the entire LCC network would be desirable.
              Example resources include, , but are not limited to:
                    i. Geospatial Fisheries Information Network (GeoFIN;
                       https://ecos.fws.gov/geofin/)
                   ii. National Conservation Easement Database
                       (http://www.conservationeasement.us/)
                 iii. Landscape-scale Energy Action Plan (LEAP)
                  iv. Tracking and Integrated Logging System (TAILS;
                       http://ecos.fws.gov/tailssite/site/home.do;jsessionid=580279AFB093860F
                       980470FFA3E2BE3C)
                   v. Sagebrush And Grassland Ecosystem Map Assessment Project
                       (SAGEMAP; http://sagemap.wr.usgs.gov/)
                  vi. DataBasin (http://databasin.org/)
                 vii. ShoreZone (http://conserveonline.org/workspaces/shorezone/)
                viii. Wildlife Tracking and Reporting Actions for the Conservation of Species
                       (TRACS; http://www.wildlifetracs.com/)
                  ix. National Wetlands Inventory (http://www.fws.gov/wetlands/)

   3. Development of guidance, user-guides, or tutorials designed to improve the utility of
      existing repositories, decision support tools, models or toolboxes and effectively improve
      our ability to apply those resources to conservation. Any such product must be
      applicable to multiple LCCs or the entire LCC network.

Preference will be given to proposals that build off of existing resources via integration of
disparate resources, expanding or improving functionality, or developing associated modules that
use existing resources in novel ways to further conservation, but all will be considered.

Desired Results/Expected Benefits:
1. The net benefit of products expected to be developed for this solicitation will be better
conservation delivery via data management and application support to conservation planning or
design, coordinated conservation activities, application, and/or monitoring and evaluation of
resource status and trends.
2. Data management is a core science and management need for all partners of all LCCs, yet our
ability to build upon our extensive knowledge base and apply that knowledge to natural resource
problems is limited by our ability to access and understand traditional, legacy and newly-
generated data. Products funded under this solicitation are expected to correct one or more
aspects of that problem.


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