Interagency group issues plan for simplifying grants

A group of agencies is working to make it easier for states, local governments and nonprofit organizations to apply for federal grants and carry out the projects associated with them. Twenty-six grant-making agencies released a plan for streamlining each step of the federal grants process earlier this month. The plan describes how agencies will comply with the 1999 Federal Financial Assistance Management Improvement Act, which requires the executive branch to develop a common application for numerous federal grant programs and create a standard set of administrative rules to govern more than 600 federal grant programs. Agencies are still far from fulfilling the act's requirements, which the plan describes as a "vast" undertaking. But the plan lays out a timetable for complying with each of the act's key requirements, including the creation of an online grant application system. The plan focuses on improving the announcement, payment and reporting procedures that are common across all grant programs. By Sept. 30, agencies will develop a set of standards for all grant announcements. It will also streamline the numerous progress and financial reports that grant recipients must turn in. In 16 months, agencies plan to put some reporting forms online. The Grants Management Committee of the Chief Financial Officer's Council is organizing agency efforts to comply with the 1999 act. The Committee has five working groups, each of which contributed to the plan. One of the groups, the Inter-Agency Electronic Grants Committee, launched a Web portal for grant applications last December. The Federal Commons Web portal will eventually allow applicants to submit and track their grant applications online, fulfilling a key objective of the 1999 act. At present, users can search a General Services Administration catalog of federal grant programs on the site. While the plan outlines a series of administrative improvements to the grants process, the Office of Management and Budget has taken steps to bolster grant management through legislation. Earlier this month, OMB sent Congress a list of recommendations for improving the grants process, according to a spokesman at the Department of Health and Human Services, the lead agency in drafting the plan.
Stay up-to-date with federal news alerts and analysis — Sign up for GovExec's email newsletters.
Close [ x ] More from GovExec

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Going Agile:Revolutionizing Federal Digital Services Delivery

    Here’s one indication that times have changed: Harriet Tubman is going to be the next face of the twenty dollar bill. Another sign of change? The way in which the federal government arrived at that decision.

  • Cyber Risk Report: Cybercrime Trends from 2016

    In our first half 2016 cyber trends report, SurfWatch Labs threat intelligence analysts noted one key theme – the interconnected nature of cybercrime – and the second half of the year saw organizations continuing to struggle with that reality. The number of potential cyber threats, the pool of already compromised information, and the ease of finding increasingly sophisticated cybercriminal tools continued to snowball throughout the year.

  • Featured Content from RSA Conference: Dissed by NIST

    Learn more about the latest draft of the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology guidance document on authentication and lifecycle management.

  • GBC Issue Brief: The Future of 9-1-1

    A Look Into the Next Generation of Emergency Services

  • GBC Survey Report: Securing the Perimeters

    A candid survey on cybersecurity in state and local governments

  • The New IP: Moving Government Agencies Toward the Network of The Future

    Federal IT managers are looking to modernize legacy network infrastructures that are taxed by growing demands from mobile devices, video, vast amounts of data, and more. This issue brief discusses the federal government network landscape, as well as market, financial force drivers for network modernization.

  • eBook: State & Local Cybersecurity

    CenturyLink is committed to helping state and local governments meet their cybersecurity challenges. Towards that end, CenturyLink commissioned a study from the Government Business Council that looked at the perceptions, attitudes and experiences of state and local leaders around the cybersecurity issue. The results were surprising in a number of ways. Learn more about their findings and the ways in which state and local governments can combat cybersecurity threats with this eBook.


When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.