DRAFT Superintendents' Toolkit by zrk13765

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									THE SUPERINTENDENT’S TOOLKIT FOR
COOPERATING ASSOCIATIONS




       DRAFT



                                   1
ABOUT THE TOOLKIT                                                             3


TOOLS FOR CHOOSING A PARTNER                                                  3

Determining Partnership Goals .................................................................................................................................. 3

CHOOSING A COOPERATING ASSOCIATION                                            5

Which cooperating association? ................................................................................................................................. 5

Partnering with an existing CA [multi-park option] ................................................................................................ 8

Partnering with a new CA [single-park option] ........................................................................................................ 8

Partnering with a national CA [multi-region option] ............................................................................................... 8

Preparing for the new cooperating association ......................................................................................................... 9

TOOLS FOR MANAGING EXPECTATIONS                                               13

Communication tools ................................................................................................................................................. 13

Operating Tools ......................................................................................................................................................... 14

Evaluation Tools ........................................................................................................................................................ 17

Training Tools ............................................................................................................................................................ 19

ISSUES RESOLUTION                                                             20

Options ....................................................................................................................................................................... 20

FAQ’S                                                                         22

Donations .................................................................................................................................................................... 22

Fundraising ................................................................................................................................................................ 22

Concessions ................................................................................................................................................................ 22

APPENDICES                                                                    24

Appendix 1: The cooperating association Principles adopted by the NLC .......................................................... 24

Appendix 2: Partnership Authorities ....................................................................................................................... 25

Appendix 3: Cooperating Association Authorities and Policy ............................................................................... 27




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The Superintendents Toolkit for Cooperating Association (Toolkit) is designed to address key issues
facing superintendents in managing of the cooperating association (CA) partnership. Where appropriate,
the toolkit will incorporate the Cooperating Association Principles that guide the National Park Service
in working with CAs. The principles were adopted by the National Leadership Council in 2008.
Principle 1: The NPS reaffirms that the primary purpose of CAs (associations) is to support the
educational, scientific, historical, and interpretive activities of the National Park Service.
Associations accomplish this primarily through the sale of interpretive and educational books and
materials to the public. While the sale of these materials may result in a profit returned to the NPS
in the form of a donation, profit-generation through retail sales is secondary to the CA purpose.
Management decisions regarding CA operations, retail sales items selection, and other factors
shall be based first on accomplishing the primary purpose of CAs, and second, on the potential of
profit generation resulting in donations to the NPS.
The tools provided are specialized and have been chosen because they will help navigate through issues
such as:
    “How to choose a CA partner”
    “How to manage expectations in the partnership” and finally
    “How to troubleshoot when the partnership falters and expectations are not met”
The toolkit is not intended to replace Director’s Order 32: Cooperating Associations and the
accompanying Reference Manual 32 (RM 32). RM 32 is still the most comprehensive guide for National
Park Service (NPS) employees and CA employees and their boards on the day-to-day management of
CAs.


There are several ways to learn more about working with partnerships including trainings, websites,
manuals, regional coordinators, and the Partnership Office in Washington, DC. The Toolkit is specific and
is meant to provide guidance on how to:
1) Determine goals a superintendent wants to accomplish with a CA.
2) Understand what policies, limitations or even prohibitions exist that may affect which partner, if any, is
    chosen.
3) Look at the world of partnerships: both nonprofit partners and, to the degree they affect CAs,
    concessions operators.
4) Help determine whether a CA is the most appropriate partnership for the goals attempted.

DETERMINING PARTNERSHIP GOALS
What is trying to be accomplished? Are there planning documents to support the goals? Who should be
at the table? Is there need for consultation with the appropriate regional or Washington Support Office?
All of these questions can help the visioning process for the new partnership.
What is trying to be accomplished?
List the activities the park wants done. Here are some ideas:
      Support resource protection projects
     Provide educational products through sales
     Interpretative, education, and outreach programs/institutes
     Manage volunteers
     Develop site-specific products
     Fundraising
Who are the potential partners that could help achieve those goals?
   CA
     Friends group
     Other government agencies

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     Education partners
     Other agencies
     Recreation Groups
     Youth organizations
     Concession operators
Which partner has the authority and ability to help?
Principle 3: Every park should have the opportunity to have a partner(s) to provide interpretive sales items
and services. The NPS is dedicated to identifying visitor needs for such items and services, and identifying
appropriate mechanisms to allow every park to fulfill those needs through its partners.


What planning documents will help?
   GMP
     LRIP
     CSP
     Strategic plan
     Business plan
Who are the stakeholders?
 Advisory group
 Park staff
 Community organizations
 CA or Friends Group
 Concessions operator
 Other nonprofit
 Other governments or agencies


When to consult the region or WASO?
Principle 8: As per current policy, signature authority for CA agreements is and should remain the Regional Director for
operations within a single region or the Director for operations in more than one region.
In addition, a change in partner-provided services which involves more than one type of organization within a park—a
CA, a concession, or a friends group can be approved at the Regional Director level, unless there are irreconcilable
differences or unless there are potential impacts beyond the region upon which it will be elevated to require the Director’s
review and approval.
    Could the creation of the partnership have impacts beyond the park? Beyond the region?
    Are there political sensitivities?
    Will other local, tribal, state, or federal governments or agencies be involved?
    Will the work of the partnership trigger any financial thresholds requiring regional review?
    Will the partnership cause a change in partner provided visitor service such as switching from a
     concession (once the contract has expired) to a cooperating association.

PUTTING OUT AN RFP
One method for selecting a nonprofit partner is to let an RFP to clearly articulate goals, expectations,
roles, responsibilities, money, operations, accountability, etc.
[Double-click on sample RFP: Gettysburg]


  F:\CASC\tool kit\
MEGA\Gettysburg RFP.doc


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The World of Nonprofit Partners


Cooperating Associations [link to NPS CA website: www.nps.gov/interp/coop_assn/index.htm]
Associations are authorized under 16 U.S.C. Sec 1-3, 6, 17j-2(e) and are guided by policy provided in
Director’s Order 32: Cooperating Associations.
After more than 85 years of collaboration with government agencies, CAs are well established as
mechanisms for providing exceptional interpretive and educational services.
Friends Groups [link to Making Friends Handbook:
www.nps.gov/partnerships/making_friends_handbook.pdf]
Association of Partners for Public Lands [link to APPL’s website: http://www.appl.org/].
National Park Foundation [link to NPF’s website: http://www.nationalparks.org/]
The National Park Foundation (NPF) is the Congressionally-chartered nonprofit partner of America's
National

DESIGNATING A PARTNER
Depending on the partner choice, there may be different approval authorities.
If a CA is chosen, then the partnership must be authorized through a cooperating association agreement
signed at the appropriate level.

APPROVAL OF A COOPERATING ASSOCIATION AGREEMENT
Principle 8: As per current policy, signature authority for CA agreements is and should remain the
Regional Director for operations within a single region or the Director for operations in more than
one region.
In addition, a change in partner-provided services which involves more than one type of
organization within a park—a CA, a concession, or a friends group can be approved at the
Regional Director level, unless there are irreconcilable differences or unless there are potential
impacts beyond the region upon which it will be elevated to require the Director’s review and
approval.
If the organization will affect:
1) One or more park units within one region: authority to designate is delegated to the regional director
     and may not be re-delegated to superintendents.
2) More than one region: authority to designate resides with the Director.
3) Supplemental agreements must be signed by the same approving official.


This section looks at how to choose a new CA where there had not previously been one or how to change
CA partners.

WHICH COOPERATING ASSOCIATION?

WHO TO CONSULT
When seeking to establish the initial partnership with a CA, the regional director and the regional CA
coordinator should be consulted.
Discussion of the role of an association should be part of park planning and included in such documents
as the GMP and Comprehensive Interpretive Plan (CIP). It may be that a proposed association’s activities
are subject to commercial services planning. Even though the primary mission of coop associations is to
provide interpretive services, commercial activities such as the sale of convenience items, should be
considered in the context of all commercial services in the park unit.
Stakeholders
 Existing concessions operator
 Existing friends group
 Park management team

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QUESTIONS TO THINK ABOUT WHEN CHOOSING A COOPERATING ASSOCIATION PARTNER
1) Does the park want to sign on with a CA that is already partnering with the NPS?
    a) If yes, the park is, by default going to be part of a multi-park association.
    b) If no, will the park
         i) Look to develop a new CA from a new partnership?
         ii) Look to develop a new CA with an existing partner?
2) Is there an existing concessions operator?
3) What is the governance structure of the potential CA?
    a) How many board members?
    b) What are their terms (to show stability balanced against allowing for new directors)?
    c) Will the same BOD govern all functions?
    d) Is the board expected to fundraise?
    e) Are board members representative of the local community and can therefore assist with
         outreach?
4) Will the association engage in more than just a CA function?
5) What is the financial structure of the organization?
    a) Are all monies pooled from all sources? Revenue sharing?
    b) What is the donations policy?
         i) Is it a set % per park based on income?
         ii) Is there some other method?
6) What agreement(s) will need to be put in place with this partner: standard CA agreement, fundraising
    agreement, cooperative agreement, or supplemental agreement?
7) Does the organization have a business plan?
8) Are there any changes to the corporate structure or function planned for the next 5 years?
9) How closely are the association’s goals aligned with park management goals?
    a) Will the CA allow the park to review, comment upon or advise on operational issues such as
         staffing levels that may impact the bottom line and therefore, possible revenue available for
         donation to the NPS.
10) How often will the association meet with park management?
11) Is there an opportunity for the association to be engaged in a CIP or other interpretive planning
    process in the next 5 years?
12) Does the organization have a strong track record in retail? As a bookstore?
13) How strong is the publications program and expertise?
14) What is the organization’s experience with volunteer management?

TOOLS FOR CHOOSING A CA
Intangibles Ranking Tool
This tool will help prioritize the intangible benefits of CAs.
    Is it more important to have a partner that is good at branding but has no experience with
     community engagement?
    Is the park’s outreach program so important that it cannot even consider an association that is
     limited in its ability to support in this area?
    Do the CA need to only provide excellent interpretive sales?
[Double click icon to open Intangibles Ranking Tool]


  F:\CASC\tool kit\
MEGA\Intangible Benefits Ranking tool.SAMPLE.xls




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Cooperating Association Models
This is a simple document that looks at some current CA models wherein a nonprofit organization is
operating under a CA agreement and sometimes one or more other agreements. These organizations are
often called hybrid organizations. [Double-click icon to open Hybrid Models]


 C:\Documents and
Settings\fennellr\Desktop\CASC\tool kit\MEGA\Hybrid Models.doc




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PARTNERING WITH AN EXISTING CA [MULTI-PARK OPTION]
This option automatically means being part of a multi-park association. When the NPS considers
designating an existing association to serve a new area or areas, the association’s executive and board
should be involved in negotiations as early as possible. Expanding association operations to include a
new area will require important financial decisions, so adequate lead-time is essential.
    :
    An existing association may be well-equipped to serve a new area for reasons of proximity,
     expertise, and/or availability of funds for start-up operations.
    There is a track record for references.
    Familiarity with NPS.
    :
    Less control.
    Potentially larger overhead expenses.
    Less focus on individual parks.
    Less flexibility.
    The need to request park specific financial reporting rather than organization-wide reporting.
    Potential for revenue earned in park to go to another park or even agency.
    Potential for superintendent’s at one park to make decisions about the CA that affect another park.

PARTNERING WITH A NEW CA [SINGLE-PARK OPTION]
A new association may be another viable alternative. Superintendents considering this alternative should
be prepared to work closely with their regional CA coordinator to evaluate not only the workload involved,
but also the funding required and the potential for revenues to support a new association.
    :
    More control
    Strong community ties through board members
    Park focused
    Clearer reporting
    :
    No history
    No predictability
    Greater opportunities for failure
    Potentially insular

PARTNERING WITH A NATIONAL CA [MULTI-REGION OPTION]
If a park wants to join a multi-regional association, consultation with the Servicewide Cooperating
Association Coordinator is in order.


    Tremendous resources
    Possible revenue sharing for small parks
    vast majority of the parks are small and lesser known that can provide valuable visitor services only
     because of these conglomerate cooperating associations that share revenues with smaller parks


    [see multi-park]
    Need for director approval(s) rather than regional director




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PREPARING FOR THE NEW COOPERATING ASSOCIATION

SIGNING THE CA AGREEMENT
Principle 4: The NPS will only sign a CA agreement with an organization whose purpose as
identified in its by-laws is consistent with supporting the interpretive, educational, and research
activities of the National Park Service.
Principle 8: As per current policy, signature authority for CA agreements is and should remain the
Regional Director for operations within a single region or the Director for operations in more than
one region.
In addition, a change in partner-provided services which involves more than one type of
organization within a park—a CA, a concession, or a friends group can be approved at the
Regional Director level, unless there are irreconcilable differences or unless there are potential
impacts beyond the region upon which it will be elevated to require the Director’s review and
approval.
   There is one standard CA agreement that must be used by all NPS CAs. Any special
     circumstances can be addressed through other stand alone agreements or with supplemental
     agreements.. The Cooperating Association Agreement is a general agreement.
[Double-click icon to open the Standard CA Agreement]


 C:\Documents and
Settings\fennellr\Desktop\CASC\tool kit\MEGA\Standard CA Agreement.doc




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Activities authorized under the CA Agreement
Associations focus their activities on purposes related to interpretation, education and visitor services.
Some of the more common activities include:
 Sales: Principle 2: The NPS has identified the ongoing need for, and value in working with both
 non-profit and for-profit partners to provide for the sale of interpretive materials (the NPS has no
 legal authority to directly sell), and the provision of interpretive services. The NPS recognizes
 our non profit and business partners’ abilities to help the NPS build capacity to serve the public
 and enhance our interpretive programs. NPS policy states that these services can be provided
 under the laws cited in a CA agreement as well as concessions law.
    We reaffirm the current language within NPS Management Policies that states: “Cooperating
     associations will be used wherever possible to facilitate the conservation, education and
     interpretive programs of a park, as authorized under 16 U.S.C. 17j-2(e). Based on a written
     agreement with the National Park Service, CAs may produce and sell interpretive items such as
     publications, maps, visual aids, handcrafts, and other objects that are directly related to the
     understanding and interpretation of the park or the National Park System. Associations may offer
     some interpretive services to augment those of the National Park Service.”
    Only CAs and concessions operators can sell in parks unless the seller has special legislation. [36
     CFR 5.3]
    Product development: producing materials—especially site-specific materials—that may increase
     the understanding and appreciation of park units and the NPS
    Programming: supporting park and NPS interpretive, educational, and scientific programs,
     including presentations and demonstrations. Superintendents must give written approval of
     interpretive program and any fees to be charged for association-conducted interpretive programs.
    Providing cash aid to NPS: supporting NPS interpretation and research by providing cash aid.
    Providing funds for or serving as contract manager for design and construction: supporting
     design and construction necessary to complete the development of park areas, when use of those
     facilities is consistent with the association’s purposes.
    Participating in activities of organizations whose goals and objectives are compatible with
     those of the NPS: by providing logistical support and staff leadership and a nexus to the
     community bringing a citizen-perspective to the NPS.
Activities Prohibited or limited under the CA Agreement
    Associations must maintain their tax exempt status under Section 501(c)(3) corporation to operate
     as a CA or will be prohibited from operating under the agreement.
    Associations are prohibited from advocacy by the Internal Revenue Code.
    While associations can lobby and still retain their tax-exempt status, lobbying activities are limited
     by the Internal Revenue Code.

WHAT ACTIVITIES REQUIRE SUPPLEMENTAL AGREEMENTS?
The Standard Agreement contains a provision to implement supplemental agreements for activities not
covered. Those activities must support the mission of the NPS and be compatible with the purposes for
which the association was established. Activities that typically require supplemental agreements are as
follows:
           Regular participation in sales activities outside of the assigned sales area,
           Construction of permanent structures on NPS property,
          Other special, or unusual or complex activities not specified in the standard agreement but
           related to CA activities.
Supplemental agreements cannot be used to circumvent use of a contract. Supplemental
agreements should undergo review by the appropriate solicitor and must be signed at the same level as
the CA Agreement.

IS THERE A NEED FOR A COOPERATIVE AGREEMENT?
Will there be any transfer of ONPS money to the CA? If so, transfer of federal funds is done under a
cooperative agreement, procurement contract, or grant. Cooperative agreements are legal instruments

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that establish a relationship between a federal agency and a state or local government, tribal government,
or other recipient.

DEVELOP A WRITTEN OPERATING PLAN
See section below. Operating Plan

ESTABLISHING ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES: DOS AND DON’TS
See Reference Manual 32 for a complete list of NPS and CA roles and responsibilities and for a more
thorough explanation of the ethics issues surrounding CAs.
NPS generally
The NPS may not manage associations.
NPS staff may not supervise or evaluate association employees.
Park superintendents
Park superintendents usually delegate day-to-day liaison with associations to their park CA coordinators,
often the park’s chief of interpretation. However, as the official responsible for overall management of a
park area, the superintendent’s role in working with an association typically includes:
    Providing information to association board and staff on current park management issues, goals and
     objectives from the management perspective including at least one annual meeting.
    Approving sales items in accordance with the Scope of Sales.
    Approving donation requests prepared by park staff.
    Serve as park liaison with association fundraising activities.
    Establishes the roles of the association and other partners in the parks, such as concessions or
     friends groups.
Ethics issues
    Any NPS employee who is responsible for oversight of association activities or who has the
     potential to affect association operations as part of his or her NPS duties must ensure that all
     actions are free from even the appearance that the association is seeking to influence that
     employee through favors or gifts, or that the employee may benefit financially through decisions
     made in the course of carrying out his or her official duties.
    Associations are considered “prohibited sources” for the purposes of applying ethics and conduct
     rules and regulations.
    Employees may not accept loans from associations.
    Employees may not accept discounts from associations unless discounts are a benefit of
     membership and the employee, as private citizen, has paid the appropriate fee for association
     membership.
    NPS employees are strictly limited in the gifts (including meals, lodging, and transportation) that
     they can accept from associations. The employee may accept gifts with a market value of $50 or
     less per occasion, with a limit not to exceed $50 in a calendar year.
       NPS will not accept funds donated from organizations in which a NPS employee is an officer on
       the board of directors, or otherwise engaged in a leadership role, unless the arrangement has been
       approved by the Department of the Interior solicitor and NPS ethics officer.
The rules on NPS employees working for associations
1) Services performed for an association by a NPS employee are best accomplished under the authority
   of the Standard Agreement, as part of the employee’s official duties on government time.
2) NPS personnel can assist in the development of association publications
   a) During duty hours.
   b) During off-duty hours. Involvement where there is compensation may be allowed but is subject to
        ethics policy.
3) Any employment of NPS staff by an association
   a) Must be in compliance with ethics policy
   b) Must be approved in writing by the NPS.

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4) An association may employ NPS staff if
   a) The employee is off-duty from his or her NPS job.
   b) The duties performed for the association are substantially different from those performed for the
       NPS.
   c) The employee, their spouse or immediate family members have no influence over policy and
       operational decisions of the NPS that affect the finances of the association.

COOPERATING ASSOCIATION ROLES
Board of directors
    The association board of directors is the voluntary governing body legally responsible for the
     organization. NPS staff may not serve as members or officers of association boards.
    It is strongly recommended that each association board of directors adopt a policy on conflicts of
     interest.
Association staff
The chief administrator often called the executive director, reports to the association’s board of directors
and has responsibility for the association’s day-to-day operations and will most likely act as the main point
of contact between park managers and the association.




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Principle 5: The NPS and CAs will work together to identify and implement System-wide
standards, tools, and a variety of training opportunities to create and communicate a mutual
understanding of what constitutes success in a partnership. Included in this effort will be jointly
developed criteria to assist in evaluating the health and success of the partnership including both
the business practices and the working relationship.
Principle 12: The NPS encourages integrated planning in parks for all revenue generation
activities and visitor services. This integrated planning will take the form of an integrated visitor
services strategy, and will not fall under, nor be subject to the requirements of the formal planning
process. The NPS encourages parks to have regular communication and coordination among all
partners. The NPS is pledged to work with its non-profit and commercial partners to arrive at
reasonable and equitable solutions when questions arise.
Once an association has been designated, both the NPS and association are responsible for the well-
being of the partnership. Although the agreement is signed by the regional director or director, the day-to-
day operations of the association are part of the superintendent’s responsibility. Any evaluation should be
approached as a tool for communication, identifying both successes and potential problem areas, and as
a step toward ensuring the continuing success of the association-NPS partnership.
1) Each superintendent must meet with the association annually, at a minimum, to review and assess
    the partnership. Board members should be encouraged to be at the meeting.
2) At least once during the term of the agreement, the NPS in consultation with the association should
    perform a more formal review. This may be accomplished on a park-by-park basis, or for an entire
    association that serves multiple parks. Operations reviews may be coordinated by park manager in
    consultation with the regional, and/or Servicewide coordinators. The outcome of the review should
    ultimately lead to a more positive relation, visitor experience, better support for park interpretive
    programs, and improved operations of the association.
3) The NPS has a responsibility to monitor association operations. For instance, the NPS may inspect
    assigned facilities and audit interpretive and other activities authorized through the Standard
    Agreement. The Agreement also allows the Director or his designee to review association financial
    records.

COMMUNICATION TOOLS

COOPERATING ASSOCIATION MEETINGS: NPS AND THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Notification of NPS of Board Meetings
Associations will give reasonable notice to the superintendent and park coordinator regarding upcoming
Board meetings and appropriate committee meetings, and will invite NPS representatives to attend those
meetings.
NPS Serving on Boards


1) Attend association meetings and participate in association committees meetings
2) Attend association board meetings in an advisory, non-voting capacity
3) Serve on appropriate association committees, including committee leadership positions excluding the
   Executive Committee.


1) serving on association boards, even in an ex-officio capacity,
2) participate in deliberation or decisions on the following topics:
   a) Matters of a confidential and proprietary nature such as personnel or compensation issues.
   b) Matters not directly relating to the association’s operation as an association of the NPS,
   c) Any association action where NPS staff might be viewed by a third party as a representative or
       agent of the association.




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NPS MEETINGS
Principle 9: We affirm the importance of park superintendents involving CAs and other partners in
comprehensive interpretive planning and the Interpretation and Education Renaissance. This
includes both long range and annual operations planning that will result in setting priorities for
park interpretive and educational needs. Likewise, we encourage CAs to conduct their own
strategic planning, and involve the NPS in this process.
At least once a year, the superintendent should sit down with CA senior management.
The CA should be part of any planning meetings as relates to interpretation of visitor center operations
involving the bookstore. Depending on the activities with which the association is engaged, the
superintendents may be the conduit to set up meetings between multiple park partners. An example of
when it would be appropriate to bring multiple partners together is when planning large-scale special
events.
If the park has a retail concession partner, the superintendent should meet with the concession operator
and the CA together at least once a year, a quarterly meeting is preferred. This meeting provides an
opportunity to review the following:
    new merchandise approval procedures
    wholesale opportunities
    new policies or procedures as relates to commercial services
    resolve potential conflicts
    planned park operations that might have an impact on retail partners
    whether sales projections are being met

OPERATING TOOLS

OPERATING AGREEMENT
Whereas each association has one standard agreement approved by the Regional Director or Director
(wherein the CAs activities cross regional boundaries), there should be an operating agreement in each
unit of the NPS where the CA does business. The operating agreement should spell out all of the
superintendent’s expectations of the CA and the NPS responsibilities toward the CA. The agreement
details how the CA will operate as a CA partner in that particular park unit and is the document of
accountability between the two organizations.
Principle 11: Within the parameter's identified as the primary purpose of CAs, the NPS will work
together with its CA partners to create an environment of innovation that will encourage and
foster creativity and experimentation in the programs and services provided by the CAs
A good operating agreement will make clear how the park envisions the partnership. Questions answered
by the agreement include the following:
1) Who are the key contacts?
2) How often will the park and CA meet?
3) What does the park need in the way of financial reporting in addition to the standard CA agreement
     requirements?
4) How will the park convey changes in NPS policy such computer and Internet protocols?
5) What facilities are assigned to the CA and what is their responsibility toward them?
6) In addition, the agreement should take into account NPS resources to be invested in partnership.
NPS Cost/Benefit of CA Partnership
The agreement will outline what resources the park expects to put into the partnership. By having a clear
accounting of what the park and its partner are putting into the relationship, the superintendent will have a
more accurate picture of the real costs and benefits of the CA relationship. The ledger sheet should
include amounts for the following:
    NPS staff cost including interpretation, maintenance, law enforcement, administrative.
    Cost per square foot of any retail, storage and office space provided per FMSS.
    Utility costs
    Regular NPS maintenance costs

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    Housing costs, if applicable
     Other costs the park may incur to have the CA partner operate
CA Cost/Benefit of CA Partnership
The operating agreement will also contain an accounting of the activities and resources the CAs expects
to put into the operations. Do the CA’s expectations match those of the park? If so, then everyone is on a
path to success. If not, then the issues should be resolved before signing off on the operating agreement.
The operating agreement could be appended with any of the items discussed in the next several sections.

STORE PROCEDURES M ANUAL
The store procedures manual contains detail for how your CA partner will operate the sales outlet in the
visitor center. The manual should be as detailed as necessary in order to affect a smooth-running
operation. The manual is where the park makes expectations known as to how the store will operate
overall. The association may have a separate procedures manual for their employees and for NPS
employees working in the store.

SCOPE OF SALES
The Scope of Sales Statement (SoS) is a collaborative effort between the park and the CA. It is the
opportunity for the NPS to make clear expectations for the sales offerings of the CA and clarify the
distinction between CA and concession sales. It addresses the following:
1) themes, quantity, audiences, price ranges
2) offers guidance for seeking out or developing new merchandise
3) contains a rationale for sales items review
All materials offered for sale by an association must be related to the interpretive themes of the park or
the NPS or must provide orientation and safety information or it must be sold under a concession
contract.


    The breadth of types of materials sold is determined by each association and park superintendent
     and is deferential to concession contractual rights.
     The park superintendent must approve each new sales item added.
Refer to Reference Manual 32: Section 3.5.3—Scope of Sales for detailed guidance on superintendent’s
role concerning scope of sales.
Sales Item Review
    The Scope of Sales Statement provides guidance for the review and approval process.
    The park CA coordinator, working with the association staff, should assume the primary
     responsibility for reviewing sales items.
    No employee involved in this process can have a financial or proprietary interest in the item.
Refer to Reference Manual 32: Section 3.5.4—Sales Item Review for detailed guidance on
superintendent’s role concerning scope of sales.


                                                                     About Scope of
                                                                       Sales.doc
A comprehensive discussion on scope of sales is available here:




                                                                                                             15
DONATIONS TO NPS PROCEDURES
The question is often asked: “What percentage of an association’s revenue is appropriate to be given as
“aid to NPS?”
There is no required or prescribed percentage. CAs are not authorized for the purpose of giving financial
aid to the NPS. CAs are authorized for the purpose of “providing assistance.” One type of assistance is
financial assistance.
If the park is focused on financial assistance rather than in-kind and staffing support, that should be made
clear to the CA with both working collaboratively toward maximizing revenues.
Donations should be considered a combination of tangible and intangible contributions.
If a percentage of financial aid is to be specified, it should take into consideration the following:
1) When negotiating a percentage donation, it is important for parks to understand how the association
     earns the revenue that is being donated. For example, if negotiating a percentage of gross revenue
     (revenue from all sources), a park should consider the following factors:
     a) if an association earns almost all of its revenue from sales (90% or more), then nearly have of
          the revenue is the cost of the goods sold (inventory), leaving roughly half of the remaining
          revenue for all other expenses including donations to the park.
     b) If an association earns most of its revenue from sales (60%-75%) but also has a large
          membership program, because there is not the associated cost of goods, there is potentially more
          money available for donations.
2) The percentage negotiated should be clearly documented.
3) The NPS level of engagement can influence association income and outflow. This is especially
     important if there is a negotiated percentage of return as both parties would be interested in the fiscal
     health of the association. By being supportive of association activities to increase sales and providing
     expertise and advice on operations efficiency, the NPS can have a direct affect on monies available
     for donations at the end of a fiscal cycle.
4) The percentage should be based on income earned not projected income.
5) The NPS should also recognize that unique mitigating circumstances, such as initial start-up years of
     an association, construction of needed facilities, saving for large capital projects, completion of a
     major “aid” project, natural disasters, or business emergencies such as pending lawsuits, may affect
     this percentage.


In determining a percentage of return as a donation to the park, consider the following:
    Association costs for office and warehouse space
    Location of an association’s operation, which may require construction of employee housing in
     remote areas, high wages in high cost of living or urban areas, etc.
    Ability of an association to generate contributions through donations and sources other than sales
     outlets, seminar programs, or more traditional association activities
    Nature of association’s operations, such as whether the association is operating low volume, high
     cost outlets at the request of the NPS, or is operating only in more profitable areas.
    Do a cost/benefit analysis to determine the appropriate mix of NPS or association staff needed to
     support the bookstore operation.
One association provides its partner parks with a tool called the Predictive Model. Depending on how the questions
are answered, a superintendent can see how decisions made by the park directly affect financial support.
[Double click icon to open Predictive Model Tool]


 C:\Documents and
Settings\fennellr\Desktop\CASC\tool kit\MEGA\Predictive Model.xls




                                                                                                                     16
EVALUATION TOOLS

ANNUAL SUPERINTENDENT’S MEETING
This may be the keystone for the success of the CA partnership. The superintendent’s attendance at the
annual meeting should not be delegated to staff. This meeting is an opportunity to review the previous
year’s successes and challenges and to formulate a plan to tackle to upcoming year.
Principle 10: The NPS is dedicated to promoting an environment for sustainability of an
organization serving the CA function.

ANNUAL ASSESSMENT
The Intangible Benefits Ranking Tool was initially used in helping to choose a partner. Now it is time to
look at that list again and rate the partner on how well they provided the intangible benefits being sought.
The rating of each benefit is then compared with how each benefit was initially ranked to come up with a
score.
The first data sheet allows a park to quickly capture the revenue and expenses (including Aid to NPS) of
the association and also the revenue and expenses of the NPS in providing the association opportunity.
The data sheet allows a park to see the aid benefit derived from association activities compared to the
total costs of providing the activity.
The second data sheet is a sample of the benefits ranking tool from above.
The third data sheet is the park’s assessment of how well the association did in meeting the priorities
needs of the park. It is the rating of the ranked benefits.
The third and forth data sheets are visual representation of how well the association’s activities meet the
stated expectations of the park. If a park as placed financial aid returned to the NPS above other
                                                                                                  st
intangible benefits such as visitor orientation, and the association’s performance lands in the 1 quadrille,
then the park’s overall satisfaction should be high. Again, this tool works best for single park associations.

[Double click icon to open CA Assessment Rating Tool]



 C:\Documents and
Settings\fennellr\Desktop\CASC\tool kit\MEGA\Jenny--_Intangible Benefits Rating tool.xls




                                                                                                            17
CA SELF ASSESSMENT
Self assessments are internal reviews done by the association. APPL has guidance on the self
assessment process.
[Double click icon to open the CA Self Assessment]


 C:\Documents and
Settings\fennellr\Desktop\CASC\tool kit\MEGA\Self Assessment.doc




                                                                                               18
TRAINING TOOLS
There is an array of training resources available to NPS and CA staff. If you are working with a new CA, a
new CA manager, or park CA coordinator, take advantage of the training that is out there. Contact your
regional coordinator for more information.
    APPL conventions and training courses
    NPS cooperating association training courses
    NPS superintendents academy
    NPS Division of Interpretation training courses
    Online training
    Eppley Institute
    Published references
    Detailed assignments with other parks and/or CAs
    Regional cooperating association coordinator guidance
    Servicewide cooperating association coordinator guidance
    Other CA guidance




                                                                                                        19
Principle 6: The NPS and partners will work together to clarify and implement the process for
identifying, coming to a mutual understanding of, and, if necessary, arbitrating problems in park-
CA relationships. We affirm the need to resolve problems at the lowest possible level.

CONSULTATION WITH APPROVING AUTHORITY
There may come a time you will need additional support to resolve a CA issue in your park. At this point, it is appropriate to
contact the regional office CA coordinator. If your park is part of a national CA, then your regional coordinate will work with
you and the servicewide coordinator.

COMMUNICATIONS CHECKLIST
Review your communications checklist to verify that you and your partner have held in your commitments.

OPERATING TOOLS CHECKLIST
Review the Operating Agreement. Are the goals and expectations clearly articulated? If not, re-visit the agreement with the CA
to resolve where clearer goals need to be expressed.

FORMAL REVIEW
Putting together a review team
The composition of the review team can include a combination of NPS and non-NPS outside expertise.
     Sample review
     Sample Review
     Stakeholders
     Roles and Responsibilities
     Cost

MEDIATION
[this section is under development]

OPTIONS

CONTINUATION OF THE SAME CA AGREEMENT

DECIDING TO TERMINATE THE AGREEMENT
Authority to Terminate an Agreement
Where an Association serves one or more park areas within a region, authority to terminate an
Association agreement is delegated to the regional director and may not be re-delegated to
superintendents. Where an Association serves park areas in more than one region, termination authority
resides with the Director.
Steps to Terminate an Agreement
1) A park and/or its association may evaluate their partnership and determine that termination of the CA
   agreement is desirable.
2) This evaluation must include the regional director (or Director as appropriate).
3) The evaluation should:
   a) include review(s) of the association’s past support of the site,
   b) include a projection of the association’s ability to meet future park needs,
   c) give consideration of the impact such a change may have on other park units served by the
       association,
   d) be completed prior to any discussion of other partnership opportunities and shared with current
       association management.



                                                                                                                                  20
Termination without Cause
Almost every government contract will contain some type of "Termination for Convenience" clause. The
NPS reserves the right to terminate the Cooperating Association Agreement or any part thereof for the
convenience of the government, at any time, when it is determined to be in the best interest of the public
to do so. The affected parties will be notified in writing within five (5) working days following the
termination.
Termination with Cause
Either partner may terminate the Cooperating Association Agreement for cause but must give thirty (30)
days written notice of its intent to do so and must provide an opportunity to meet with the affected party to
discuss its reasons for termination within the 30-day termination period.

WORK OUT A NEW AGREEMENT AND OPERATING PLAN




                                                                                                           21
DONATIONS
Donations to CAs on behalf of NPS
    Although the NPS is authorized to accept direct donations, associations are often in a better
     position to grow a donation, and may therefore be more attractive to a donor.
    When NPS personnel have responsibility for completion of projects funded through donations to
     associations, the association and NPS must coordinate carefully to ensure timely project
     completion and funds accountability.
Donations to NPS from CAs (Aid to NPS)
Donations may be financial assistance or in-kind service.
There is no Servicewide prescribed level of aid. The association and its park partners should jointly
determine the level of aid and a procedure for requesting, approving, and accounting for donations.
Donations policy should be part of a Donations SOP. See “Managing Expections—Operating Plans.”
Acceptance of donations follow guidance in DO 21.
Types of Donations
Lists of acceptable donations can be found in RM 32.
Donations for NPS Salaries
Donations from CAs may not be used for federal salaries, with the following exceptions:
    Support for temporary federal employees engaged in interpretive and/or educational activities
    Salaries and other costs associated with projects undertaken by the Harpers Ferry Center that are
     funded by the association.
    Seasonal employees are not temporary employees by OPM definition and, therefore, association
     funds cannot be used to pay for seasonal employees.
NPS Travel Paid by Donations
Employees may accept donations of travel expenses from associations only as a part of an approved
donations program of support and projects.

FUNDRAISING

FUNDRAISING BY COOPERATING ASSOCIATIONS
Association fundraising activities that are done for purposes other than interpretive, educational, and/or
research must be authorized under a separate partnership general agreement and not the cooperating
association agreement. They must be approved by the NPS and governed by Director’s Order #21.

ASSOCIATION MEMBERSHIP PROGRAMS
Associations should have clear goals when instituting membership programs.
The NPS encourages associations with membership programs to recognize membership discounts given
to members of other associations.
It is strongly recommended that members not be given voting privileges in the association.
http://www.nps.gov/partnerships/membership_programs.htm.

CONCESSIONS

OVERVIEW
The concession program administers nearly 600 concession contracts that gross over $750 million
annually. Concessioners employ over 25,000 hospitality industry people during peak season. Learn more
at Concessions Training for Superintendents.

SALES
The sale of merchandise in parks can be authorized through a concessions contract. Contracts are
competitively bid.
                                                                                                             22
Commercial Use Authorizations are used to allow:
(1) In-park services with annual gross receipts of not more than $25,000 from commercial services
originating and provided solely within a park area. An example of an in-park service is firewood sales to
visitors in a park area campground.
(2) Out-of-park services by operations that provide commercial services originating and terminating
outside of the park area An example of an out-of-park service is a horseback trail ride operation that is
based outside of the park area but takes visitors on rides into and out of the Visitor Convenience Items
Sales by Coops
See Sales of Visitor Convenience Items
Learn more about concessions operations at http://concessions.nps.gov/
Concession Sales
Cooperating associations are not prohibited from providing concession services in addition to interpretive
material sales.
    A concessions permit is required for an association to sell non-interpretive/educational items,
     considered to be visitor conveniences.
    A Scope of Sales statement is required for merchandise sold under the CA agreement and the
       concessions permit.
Detailed information about the following sales-related topics can be found in RM-32.
    Types of sales items
    Selling friends-Group-Produced Materials
    CAs selling Visitor Convenience Items
    Setting up a sales outlet either in park or out of park
    Special Event Sales
    Multi-Agency or Interagency Sales Outlets
    Mail Order Sales and Approvals
    Internet Sales
Concessions-related issue resolution
Superintendents, with assistance from park association coordinators and NPS concessions staff, should
monitor the activities of associations and concessioners in an effort to encourage cooperation and keep
potential conflicts to a minimum. In all matters of question, it is visitor benefit and safety that is paramount.
Park staffs and associations should also look for opportunities to work collaboratively with concessions,
such as wholesaling interpretive sales items, joint training, and co-sponsoring projects to improve visitor
services.
Association management should be familiar with the Internal Revenue Code pertaining to Unrelated
Business Income Tax (UBIT), which establishes the parameters for relatedness of sales items (and other
non-retail activities) to an exempt organization’s mission. Revenue derived from unrelated activities,
including sales, may be subject to state and federal income taxes. Failure to comply with the Internal
Revenue Code could result in serious repercussions, including fines, penalties, and the revocation of the
association’s tax-exempt status.




                                                                                                              23
APPENDIX 1: THE COOPERATING ASSOCIATION PRINCIPLES ADOPTED BY THE NLC
October 2008 Final, Q & A Format
1. What are the NPS’s priorities for the cooperating association mission?
The NPS reaffirms that the primary purpose of cooperating associations (CAs) is to support the educational, scientific, historical, and
interpretive activities of the National Park Service. Associations accomplish this primarily through the sale of interpretive and educational
books and materials to the public. While the sale of these materials may result in a profit returned to the NPS in the form of a donation,
profit-generation through retail sales is secondary to the CA purpose.
Management decisions regarding CA operations, retail sales items selection, and other factors shall be based first on accomplishing the
primary purpose of CAs, and second, on the potential of profit generation resulting in donations to the NPS.
2. Are nonprofit CAs the only organizations that should be permitted to sell interpretive materials and provide
supplementary interpretive services in parks?
The NPS has identified the ongoing need for, and value in working with both non-profit and for-profit partners to provide for the sale of
interpretive materials (the NPS has no legal authority to directly sell), and the provision of interpretive services. The NPS recognizes our
non profit and business partners’ abilities to help the NPS build capacity to serve the public and enhance our interpretive programs. NPS
policy states that these services can be provided under the laws cited in a CA agreement as well as concessions law.
We reaffirm the current language within NPS Management Policies that states: “Cooperating associations will be used wherever possible to
facilitate the conservation, education and interpretive programs of a park, as authorized under 16 U.S.C. 17j-2(e). Based on a written
agreement with the National Park Service, CAs may produce and sell interpretive items such as publications, maps, visual aids, handcrafts,
and other objects that are directly related to the understand and interpretation of the park or the National Park System. Associations may
offer some interpretive services to augment those of the National Park Service.”
3. Should every park have the opportunity to have a partner(s) to provide interpretive sales items and services?
Every park should have the opportunity to have a partner(s) to provide interpretive sales items and services. The NPS is dedicated to
identifying visitor needs for such items and services, and identifying appropriate mechanisms to allow every park to fulfill those needs
through its partners.
4. What types of organizations can provide the CA function in a park?
The NPS will only sign a CA agreement with an organization whose purpose as identified in its by-laws is co nsistent with supporting the
interpretive, educational, and research activities of the National Park Service.
5.What constitutes success in a CA partnership? How should the criteria to evaluate the health and success of the partnership be
developed?
The NPS and CAs will work together to identify and implement System-wide standards, tools, and a variety of training opportunities to
create and communicate a mutual understanding of what constitutes success in a partnership. Included in this effort will be jointly
developed criteria to assist in evaluating the health and success of the partnership including both the business practices and the working
relationship.
6. At what level and by what process should problems in park-CA relationships be resolved?
The NPS and partners will work together to clarify and implement the process for identifying, coming to a mutual understanding of, and, if
necessary, arbitrating problems in park-CA relationships. We affirm the need to resolve problems at the lowest possible level.
7. Should a CA be permitted to serve other, non-CA functions in a park?
An organization that serves the CA function (providing interpretive materials and services) may serve other functions to support the NPS,
such as fundraising or a concession operation, only when authorized by the appropriate legal instruments.
 8. At what NPS level should signature authority rest with for a CA agreement?
As per current policy, signature authority for CA agreements is and should remain the Regional Director for operations within a single
region or the Director for operations in more than one region.
In addition, a change in partner-provided services which involves more than one type of organization within a park—a CA, a concession, or
a friends group can be approved at the Regional Director level, unless there are irreconcilable differences or unless there are potential
impacts beyond the region upon which it will be elevated to require the Director’s review and approval.
9. What level of involvement should CAs have in comprehensive planning for interpretation and visitor services in a park?
We affirm the importance of park superintendents involving CAs and other partners in comprehensive interpretive planning and the
Interpretation and Education Renaissance. This includes both long range and annual operations planning that will result in setting priorities
for park interpretive and educational needs. Likewise, we encourage CAs to conduct their own strategic planning, and involve the NPS in
this process.
10. To what degree is the NPS responsible for the sustainability of a CA?
The NPS is dedicated to promoting an environment for sustainability of an organization serving the CA function.
11. To what extent does the NPS want to encourage innovation among our CAs?
Within the parameter's identified as the primary purpose of Cooperating Associations, the NPS will work together with its CA partners to
create an environment of innovation that will encourage and foster creativity and experimentation in the programs and services provided by
the CAs.
12. How should the various nonprofit and commercial revenue generating partners coordinate to maximize visitor service and
minimize competition in the provision of retail sales opportunities and visitor services?
The NPS encourages integrated planning in parks for all revenue generation activities and visitor services. This integrated planning will
take the form of an integrated visitor services strategy, and will not fall under, nor be subject to the requirements of the formal planning
process. The NPS encourages parks to have regular communication and coordination among all partners. The NPS is pledged to work with
its non-profit and commercial partners to arrive at reasonable and equitable solutions when questions arise
                                                                                                                                24
APPENDIX 2: PARTNERSHIP AUTHORITIES
 Authority     Purpose             Opportunities for                                  How to           Criteria and
                                   Revenue                                            Implement        Restrictions for Use
Cooperating       To provide interpretation and     Sales by the CA of                Standard, non-   must be nonprofit
Associations      education services and            interpretive and education        negotiable CA    501( c)(3)
                  products to the public, as well   products and services.            agreement.
16 USC 1-3, 6     as research support.              Also authorizes CAs to lead
and 17j-(2)e      Associations may also             fund-raising efforts for the
                  accept donations on               NPS and donate funds to
                  behalf of the NPS and             the NPS.
                  lead NPS-approved
                  fundraising.
NPS               To provide commercial             Franchise fees paid by            Competitive      Should not be provided
Concessions       visitor services                  concessions operations stay       offering of      within a park if the
Management                                          in the NPS, with 80%              concessions      identified needs for visitor
Improvement                                         remaining with the park and       prospectuses.    services can be
Act of 1998                                         20% allocated to the                               adequately met outside
Public Law 105-                                     concessions program                                park boundaries.
391                                                 overall.
Title IV—

36 CFR 51
Federal Lands     · Reducing the backlog of         Admission and visitor use         Fee              Those who lawfully enter
Recreation        maintenance to improve            fees charged by the               Management       the park for activities not
Enhancement       the quality of the visitor        National Park Service             Agreements       related to recreation will
Act               experience                                                          including        not be charged recreation
                  · Habitat restoration                                               contracts.       fees. This includes First
                  directly related to wildlife                                                         Amendment activities,
16 USC 6801-      dependent recreation                                                Fee collection   SUPs, NPS-authorized
6814              · Provide visitor                                                   can be           research, and outings for
                  information, interpretation                                         contracted.      education purposes by
                  and services                                                                         schools and other
                                                                                                       bonafide educational
                                                                                                       institutions.
Historic          To ensure preservation of         Lessee may use property to        Competitive      Use must not unduly limit
Property          historic properties               provide a commercial              offering.        public appreciation of the
Leasing                                             service if the service will be                     property; interfere with
                                                    patronized by park visitors       nonprofits can   visitor use and enjoyment
                                                    to only a minor extent.           receive leases   of the park; or preclude
                                                                                      non-             use for other mgt
16 USC 1a-2(k)                                      Rental income to the NPS          competitively    purposes, including
                                                    that is at least fair market                       administrative, judged
                                                    value.                                             more appropriate or cost
                                                                                                       effective
Special Park      To allow short-term               Fees for cost recovery,           Issuance of a
Uses              activities that provide a         including those incurred in       Special Use
                  benefit to an individual,         writing the permit,               Permit by the
                  group, or organization            monitoring, providing             park
                  rather than the public at         protection services,
                  large; is not initiated,          restoring park areas, or
                  sponsored, or conducted           otherwise supporting a
                  by the NPS; and requires          special park use will be
                  some degree of mgt                reimbursed. When
                  control to protect park           appropriate, the NPS will
                  resources and public              also include a fair charge for
                  interest                          the use of the land or facility
                                                    (Management Policies
                                                    8.6.1.2)
                                                    No fees charged for First
                                                    Amendment activities



                                                                                                                    25
Fee               To sell at fair market value   Fee interpretation by the      This authority      The 1a2(g) authority may
Interpretation    products and services          NPS and other                  allow the NPS to    not be used to charge
                  produced in the conduct of     organizations.                 charge fees, as     fees for core interpretive
                  living history exhibits and                                   well as to enter    tours, including cave
16 USC 1a-2(g)    interpretive demonstrations    Sale of handmade crafts by     into contracts      tours, historic home tours,
                  in areas of the NPS            cultural demonstrators who     including           and other programs that
                  system for products and        are not NPS employees.         cooperative         are not related to living
                  services that are directly                                    agreements with     history exhibits and
                  related to the park’s living                                  others and to       interpretive
                  exhibits and interpretive                                     credit the          demonstrations;
                  demonstrations; enter into                                    proceeds to the
                  contracts and cooperative                                     appropriation       Handicrafts need to relate
                  agreements to provide                                         bearing the cost    to the park’s interpretive
                  living exhibits and                                                               themes
                  interpretive                                                                      Handicrafts need to be
                  demonstrations; and, place                                                        self-made
                  income received from
                  these authorized activities                                                       All fees using the 1a2(g)
                  into accounts that pay the                                                        authority must be
                  cost of conducting the                                                            submitted annually as part
                  activities.                                                                       of the Service-wide Fee
                                                                                                    Rate Change Request

                                                                                                    Funds used to support the
                                                                                                    specific program for which
                                                                                                    they were imposed are
                                                                                                    available only for
                                                                                                    expenditure in the fiscal
                                                                                                    year in which they are
                                                                                                    collected.
Cooperative       gave the NPS the broad                                        cooperative         substantial involvement is
Agreements        authority to enter into                                       agreements that     expected
31 U.S.C. 6305    beneficial partnerships, to                                   involve the
                  carry out public purposes                                     transfer of NPS
                  of National Park Service                                      appropriated
                  programs                                                      funds to State,
                                                                                local and tribal
                                                                                governments,
                                                                                other public
                                                                                entities,
                                                                                educational
                                                                                institutions, and
                                                                                private nonprofit
                                                                                organizations
Special Events    Special events are             The sale of food is allowed    Permit              Cannot conflict with a
Sales             activities, such as sporting   only when the sale: (1) does   authorized by       concession contract.
                  events, pageants, regattas,    not conflict with the          park. Fees may
                  public spectator               activities of an NPS           apply.              The sale of T-shirts,
8.6.2.4 Mgt       attractions, entertainment,    concession, (2) is managed                         clothing, arts and crafts,
Policies          ceremonies, large group        under a permit, and (3) is                         and any other
                  camps or rendezvous,           conducted in compliance                            merchandise in
                  which fall under the           with Director’s Order #83:                         connection with a special
                  category of privileges.        Public Health. The                                 event or a First
                                                                                                    Amendment activity is
                                                                                                    prohibited.
36CFR 2.52 for    sale of printed material in                                                       Printed material cannot be
printed           connection with a special                                                         solely commercial
materials         event or First Amendment                                                          advertising (applies to
                  activity is allowed,                                                              sale and distribution of
                                                                                                    printed materials)

Friends and       authorizes the NPS to
Fundraising       accept donations for the
                  purposes of the National
Section 6 of 16   Park System:
U.S.C.
                                                                                                                26
APPENDIX 3: COOPERATING ASSOCIATION AUTHORITIES AND POLICY

Authority to designate CAs is delegated to the Director and is re-delegated to the regional directors.
This authority may not be re-delegated to superintendents. [31 F.R., p. 4255]
Authority to designate or terminate an association is assigned to the regional director (or Director,
where appropriate). Designation of an association occurs through a designation letter, but must be
accomplished and authorized through a signed Cooperating Association Agreement (“Agreement”).
Authority to partner with associations “…accept the assistance of any federal, state, or municipal
department or agency; or any educational or scientific institution; or any patriotic association or
individual for the protection, preservation, maintenance or operation of historic sites, objects or property.”
[16 U.S.C. Sec 461-468e].
Authority for NPS employees to work with and for associations: “appropriations shall be available for
the services of field employees in cooperation with such nonprofit scientific and historical societies
engaged in educational work in the various parks and monuments.” [1937 Interior Appropriations Act]
Authority to provide space and facilities allows the NPS to make available facilities “to such nonprofit
scientific and historical societies engaged in educational work in the various parks and monuments…”
[Public Law 79-633],
 Authority to provide supplies and equipment “on a reimbursement of appropriations basis, supplies,
and the rental of equipment to persons and agencies that ... render services or perform functions that
facilitate or supplement the activities of ... the National Park Service ...Provided that reimbursement
hereunder may be credited to the appropriation current at the time reimbursements are received.” [16
U.S.C. Sec 1b5].
NPS Management Policies state that CAs
           “will be used wherever possible to facilitate the conservation, education, and interpretive
            programs of a park, as authorized under 16 U.S.C. 17j-2(e).
           may produce and sell interpretive items such as publications, maps, visual aids, handcrafts,
            and other objects that are directly related to the understanding and interpretation of the park
            or the National Park System.
           associations may offer some interpretive services to augment those of the National Park
            Service”
           may, in certain circumstances and with NPS approval, sell, under concession authorizations,
            visitor convenience items unrelated to the park theme, as described in the Concessions
            Management Guidelines. A concessioner and an association will generally not operate
            duplicative, competitive sales outlets in the same building; however, compatible sales
            arrangements may be established.”




                                                                                                            27

								
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