[Federal Register Volume 71, Number 65 (Wednesday, April 5, 2006)]
[Notices]
[Pages 17081-17083]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E6-4868]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

[Docket No. 060324085-6085-01; I.D. 032906F]


Science on a Sphere Installation Cooperative Agreements

AGENCY: Office of Education (OEd), Office of the Undersecretary of 
Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere (USEC), National Oceanic and 
Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce.

ACTION: Notice and request for proposals.

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SUMMARY: The NOAA Office of Education (OEd) is issuing a request for 
applications from informal education institutions with interest in 
displaying NOAA's Science on a Sphere. Awards will be made as one-year 
cooperative agreements and will be issued in fiscal year 2006 (FY06). 
Funded projects will support informal education institutions in 
incorporating this data visualization technology and compatible 
environmental data products into public exhibits. The goal of this 
program is to build environmental literacy among the general public 
through increased use of NOAA or NOAA-related data and data products in 
informal education institutions. See NOAA's Education Plan for more 
details on this goal and strategy: (http://www.oesd.noaa.gov/NOAA_Ed_Plan.pdf). It is anticipated that final recommendations for funding 
under this announcement will be made by June 30, 2006, and that 
projects funded under this announcement will have a start date no 
earlier than October 1, 2006.

DATES: The deadline for full applications is 5 p.m., EDT May 5, 2006. 
It is anticipated that final recommendations for funding under this 
announcement will be made by June 30, 2006, and that projects funded 
under this announcement will have a start date no earlier than October 
1, 2006.

ADDRESSES: Full applications should be submitted through Grants.gov 
APPLY (http://www.grants.gov). It is strongly suggested that Grants.gov 
be accessed using Internet Explorer for maximum compatibility. Because 
registration with Grants.gov can take up to three weeks, it is strongly 
recommended that this registration process is completed as soon as 
possible. Also, even if an applicant has registered with Grants.gov 
previously, the applicant's password may have expired. It is 
recommended that submission through Grants.gov be attempted 2 days 
prior to the deadline to avoid electronic submission errors. See the 
Office of Education's frequently asked questions site http://www.oesd.noaa.gov/sos_faqs.html for more details.
    If an applicant does not have Internet access, application kits 
must be requested from Carrie McDougall, completed, signed, and one 
hard copy should be sent to Carrie McDougall, DOC/NOAA Office of 
Education, 1401 Constitution Avenue NW., Room 6863, Washington, DC 
20230. If submitting a hard copy, applicants are requested to provide a 
CD-ROM of the application, including scanned signed forms or forms with 
electronic signatures. Printed forms from Grants.gov submitted in hard 
copy will not be accepted. Please note: Hard copies submitted via the 
U.S. Postal Service can take up to 4 weeks to reach this office; 
applicants are recommended to send hard copies via expedited shipping 
methods (e.g., Airborne Express, DHL, Fed Ex, UPS). See the Office of 
Education's frequently asked questions site http://www.oesd.noaa.gov/sos_faqs.html for more details. This announcement will also be 
available at: http://www.oesd.noaa.gov/funding_opps.html or by 
contacting the program official identified in FOR FURTHER INFORMATION 
CONTACT.

[[Page 17082]]


FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Carrie McDougall, telephone 202-482-
0875; e-mail carrie.mcdougall@noaa.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The NOAA Office of Education (OEd) is 
issuing a request for applications from informal education institutions 
with interest in displaying NOAA's Science on a Sphere. Awards will be 
made as one-year cooperative agreements and will be issued in FY06. The 
goal of this program is to build environmental literacy among the 
general public through increased use of NOAA data or NOAA-related data 
and data products in informal education institutions. See NOAA's 
Education Plan for more details on this goal and strategy: (http://www.oesd.noaa.gov/NOAA_Ed_Plan.pdf). It is anticipated that final 
recommendations for funding under this announcement will be made by 
June 30, 2006, and that projects funded under this announcement will 
have a start date no earlier than October 1, 2006. NOAA's Science on a 
Sphere (SOS) is a complete data visualization system consisting of a 
68-inch diameter opaque sphere onto which 4 video projectors project 
seamless ``movies'' of animated earth system dynamics or other solar 
system objects. NOAA data and NOAA-related data, models, and near real-
time whole-earth satellite imagery are provided with the SOS system. 
The current version of the standard, turnkey system will be provided to 
successful applicants. See http://www.oesd.noaa.gov/sos_faqs.html for 
more details. A detailed description for each program priority is in 
the full funding opportunity announcement that can be accessed via the 
Grants.gov Web site, the NOAA Web site at http://www.oesd.noaa.gov/funding_opps.html, or by contacting the program official identified in 
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT.

Electronic Access

    The full text of the full funding opportunity announcement for this 
OEd program can be accessed via the Grants.gov FIND Web site. That 
announcement will also be available at this NOAA Web site: http://www.oesd.noaa.gov/funding_opps.html or by contacting the program 
official identified under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT. Applicants 
must read and comply with all requirements contained in the full 
funding opportunity announcement. This Federal Register notice is 
available through the NOAA Home page at: http://www.noaa.gov/.

    Statutory Authority: 15 U.S.C. 1540; Public Law 109-108, 
Department of Commerce and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 
2006.
    CFDA: 11.469, Congressionally Identified Awards and Projects.

Funding Availability

    NOAA announces the availability of approximately $200,000 of 
Federal financial assistance in FY 2006 for Science on a Sphere 
Installation Cooperative Agreements. Approximately 2 to 4 awards in the 
form of cooperative agreements will be made. NOAA will only consider 
projects that have duration of one year. The total Federal amount that 
may be requested from NOAA shall not exceed $100,000 including direct 
and indirect costs. Applications requesting Federal support from NOAA 
of more than $100,000 in total costs will not be considered for 
funding.
    Publication of this notice does not oblige DOC/NOAA to award any 
specific project or to obligate any available funds. If an applicant 
incurs any costs prior to receiving an award agreement signed by an 
authorized NOAA Grants Officer, the applicant would do so solely at 
one's own risk of such costs not being included under the award.

Eligibility

    Eligible applicants are institutions of higher education, other 
nonprofits, commercial organizations, and state, local and Indian 
tribal governments. Federal agencies are not eligible to receive 
Federal assistance under this announcement, but may be project 
partners. Among those eligible applicants are K through 12 public and 
independent schools and school systems, and science centers and 
museums. The Department of Commerce/National Oceanic and Atmospheric 
Administration (DOC/NOAA) is strongly committed to increasing the 
participation of Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs), i.e., 
Historically Black Colleges and Universities, Hispanic-serving 
institutions, Tribal colleges and universities, Alaskan Native and 
Native Hawaiian institutions, and institutions that work in underserved 
communities. Applications are encouraged that involve any of the above 
institutions.

Cost Sharing Requirements

    There are no cost-sharing requirements.

Evaluation and Selection Procedures

    NOAA published its agency-wide solicitation entitled ''Omnibus 
Notice Announcing the Availability of Grant Funds for Fiscal Year 
2006'' for projects for Fiscal Year 2006 in the Federal Register on 
June 30, 2005 (70 FR 37766). The evaluation criteria and selection 
procedures for projects contained in that omnibus notice are applicable 
to this solicitation. Copies of the notice are available on the 
Internet at: http://www.ago.noaa.gov/grants/funding.shtml. Further 
details on evaluation and selection criteria can be found in the full 
funding opportunity announcement.

Intergovernmental Review

    Applications under this program are not subject to Executive Order 
12372, ''Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs.''

Limitation of Liability

    In no event will NOAA or the Department of Commerce be responsible 
for application preparation costs if these programs fail to receive 
funding or are cancelled because of other agency priorities. 
Publication of this announcement does not oblige NOAA to award any 
specific project or to obligate any available funds.

National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA)

    NOAA must analyze the potential environmental impacts, as required 
by the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), for applicant projects 
or proposals which are seeking NOAA Federal funding opportunities. 
Detailed information on NOAA compliance with NEPA can be found at the 
following NOAA NEPA Web site: http://www.nepa.noaa.gov/, including our 
NOAA Administrative Order 216-6 for NEPA, http://www.nepa.noaa.gov/NAO216 6 TOC.pdf, and the Council on Environmental Quality 
implementation regulations, http://ceq.eh.doe.gov/nepa/regs/ceq/toc 
ceq.htm. Consequently, as part of an applicant's package, and under 
their description of their program activities, applicants are required 
to provide detailed information on the activities to be conducted, 
locations, sites, species and habitat to be affected, possible 
construction activities, and any environmental concerns that may exist 
(e.g., the use and disposal of hazardous or toxic chemicals, 
introduction of nonindigenous species, impacts to endangered and 
threatened species, aquaculture projects, and impacts to coral reef 
systems). In addition to providing specific information that will serve 
as the basis for any required impact analyses, applicants may also be 
requested to assist NOAA in drafting of an environmental assessment, if 
NOAA determines an assessment is required.

[[Page 17083]]

Applicants will also be required to cooperate with NOAA in identifying 
feasible measures to reduce or avoid any identified adverse 
environmental impacts of their proposal. The failure to do so shall be 
grounds for not selecting an application. In some cases if additional 
information is required after an application is selected, funds can be 
withheld by the Grants Officer under a special award condition 
requiring the recipient to submit additional environmental compliance 
information sufficient to enable NOAA to make an assessment on any 
impacts that a project may have on the environment.

The Department of Commerce Pre-Award Notification Requirements for 
Grants and Cooperative Agreements

    The Department of Commerce Pre-Award Notification Requirements for 
Grants and Cooperative Agreements contained in the Federal Register 
notice of December 30, 2004 (69 FR 78389), are applicable to this 
solicitation.

Paperwork Reduction Act

    This document contains collection-of information requirements 
subject to the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA). The use of Standard Forms 
424, 424A, 424B, and SF-LLL and CD-346 has been approved by the Office 
of Management and Budget (OMB) under the respective control numbers 
0348-0043, 0348-0044, 0348-0040, 0348-0046, and 0605-0001.
    Notwithstanding any other provision of law, no person is required 
to, nor shall a person be subject to a penalty for failure to comply 
with, a collection of information subject to the requirements of the 
PRA unless that collection of information displays a currently valid 
OMB control number.

Executive Order 12866

    This notice has been determined to be not significant for purposes 
of Executive Order 12866.

Executive Order 13132 (Federalism)

    It has been determined that this notice does not contain policies 
with Federalism implications as that term is defined in Executive Order 
13132.

Administrative Procedure Act/Regulatory Flexibility Act

    Prior notice and an opportunity for public comment are not required 
by the Administrative Procedure Act or any other law for rules 
concerning public property, loans, grants, benefits, and contracts (5 
U.S.C. 553(a)(2)). Because notice and opportunity for comment are not 
required pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553 or any other law, the analytical 
requirements for the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.) 
are inapplicable. Therefore, a regulatory flexibility analysis has not 
been prepared.

    Dated: March 30, 2006.
Helen Hurcombe,
Director, NOAA Acquisitions and Grants, U.S. Department of Commerce.
[FR Doc. E6-4868 Filed 4-4-06; 8:45 am]
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