[Federal Register Volume 78, Number 77 (Monday, April 22, 2013)]
[Notices]
[Pages 23769-23770]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2013-09330]


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DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES

Administration for Children and Families

[CFDA Numbers: 93.581, 93.587, 93.612]


Notice of Final Issuance on the Adoption of Administration for 
Native Americans (ANA) Program Policies and Procedures

AGENCY: Administration for Native Americans (ANA), ACF, HHS.

ACTION: Issuance of Final Policy Directive.

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SUMMARY: The Administration for Native Americans (ANA) is issuing final 
interpretive rules, general statements of policy and rules of agency 
organization, procedure, or practice relating to the following Funding 
Opportunity Announcements (FOAs): Social and Economic Development 
Strategies (hereinafter referred to as SEDS), SEDS--Native Asset 
Building Initiative (hereinafter referred to as NABI), Sustainable 
Employment and Economic Development Strategies (hereinafter referred to 
as SEEDS), Native Language Preservation and Maintenance (hereinafter 
referred to as Language Preservation), Native Language Preservation and 
Maintenance--Esther Martinez Initiative (hereinafter referred to as 
Language--EMI), and Environmental Regulatory Enhancement (hereinafter 
referred to as ERE). This notice also provides information about how 
ANA will administer these programs.

DATES: The policies noted in the original Notice of Public Comment 
(NOPC) are effective immediately upon publication.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Carmelia Strickland, Director, 
Division of Program Operations, ANA (877) 922-9262.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Section 814 of the Native Americans Programs 
Act of 1974, as amended, requires ANA to provide notice of its proposed 
interpretive rules, general statements of policy, and rules of agency 
organization, procedure or practice. The proposed clarifications, 
modifications, and new text will appear in the six FY 2013 FOAs: SEDS, 
NABI, SEEDS, Language Preservation, Language--EMI, and ERE. ANA 
published a NOPC in the Federal Register (78 FR 13062) on February 26, 
2013, with proposed policy and program clarifications, modifications, 
and activities for the fiscal year (FY) 2013 FOAs. The public comment 
period was open for 30 days.
    For information on the changes ANA is making, please refer to the 
NOPC at the following link: https://www.federalregister.gov/articles/2013/02/26/2013-04383/request-for-public-comment-on-the-proposed-adoption-of-administration-for-native-americans-program.
    ANA received one comment from a Native non-profit organization. ANA 
considered the comment received and provides responses, clarifications, 
and modifications in this final directive. The following paragraph 
summarizes the comment and our response:

A. Comment and Response

    Comment: ANA received one comment in reference to ANA's new 
administrative policy focused on conflict of interest standards that 
states that staff employed through an ANA-funded project cannot also 
serve as a member of the governing body for the applicant organization. 
Therefore, staff employed through an ANA-funded project cannot also 
serve as a member of the governing body for the applicant organization. 
During the award negotiation phase, ANA will ask the prospective 
recipient to modify project personnel if a proposed staff member is 
also a member of the applicant organization's governing body. In 
addition, there should be a separation of duties from staff and the 
governing bodies within an organization to ensure the integrity of 
internal controls and to minimize disruptions in the continuity of 
operations.
    The commenter stated that this policy would have a negative impact 
on the commenter's organization's ability to implement a grant as it 
currently allows two teachers to serve as members of the school board, 
as required by their bylaws. If this policy were implemented, the 
applicant would not have the ability to modify project personnel to 
align with this policy due to the extreme shortage of certified

[[Page 23770]]

teachers with requisite language capabilities available to staff an ANA 
grant. In addition, the commenter stated that the by-laws are written 
so that teacher members do not have decision-making authority regarding 
personnel actions, nor to make financial decisions that are of personal 
benefit, thus insuring internal controls.
    Response: ANA offers no change in response to this comment. While 
ANA is sympathetic to the commenter's concern, it is important that 
this policy remains as written. Under the standard terms and conditions 
for discretionary HHS awards (Grants Policy Statement, page II-7 at 
https://www.acf.hhs.gov/grants/terms-and-conditions), grant recipients 
are required to establish safeguards to prevent employees, consultants, 
members of governing bodies, and others who may be involved in grant-
supported activities, from using their positions for purposes that are, 
or give the appearance of being, motivated by a desire for private 
financial gain for themselves or others, such as those with whom they 
have family, business, or other ties.
    This has been a long-standing policy of the Administration for 
Children and Families. All prospective applicants are required to 
submit the SF-424B Assurances (Non-Construction) agreeing to these 
terms and conditions at the time of submission. ANA understands this 
can cause challenges for applicants but it is important that applicants 
are reminded of the requirement to establish safeguards that prohibit 
employees from using their position for a purpose that presents a 
conflict of interest or the appearance of a conflict of interest.

B. Funding Opportunity Announcements

    For information on the types of projects funded by ANA, please 
refer to ANA's Web site for information on our program areas and 
funding opportunity announcements: http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/ana.
    Pre-publication information on ANA's FOAs is available at the HHS 
Forecast Web site at http://www.acf.hhs.gov/hhsgrantsforecast/.
    Once published, the 2013 FOAs can be accessed at: http://www.acf.hhs.gov/grants/open/foa/office/ana or http://www.acf.hhs.gov/grants/open/foa/. Synopses and application forms will be available on 
www.Grants.gov.

Lillian A. Sparks,
Commissioner, Administration for Native Americans.
[FR Doc. 2013-09330 Filed 4-19-13; 8:45 am]
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