Section 5: Post Grant Approval Procedures And Regulations
Recipients of FTA grant funds are responsible for prudent management and timely execution of their projects. FTA's grant management requirements include the following:
|For the 5310 and 5311 programs, the State is held responsible for ensuring that FTA requirements are met. States, in order to meet FTA requirements, may pass these responsibilities onto their subrecipients.|
The majority of FTA grants involve the procurement of goods and/or services, which must be conducted in full and open competition. State procurement procedures apply when States are the recipients of FTA funding under the 5309, 5310, 5311 and JARC programs.
FTA Circular 4220.1D provides comprehensive information on requirements that a direct grantee (or subrecipient) must adhere to in the solicitation, award and administration of its third party contracts. FTA has also published a Best Practices Manual that provides useful suggestions.
Best Practices Manual http://www.fta.dot.gov/library/admin/BPPM/
FTA Circular 4220.1D
|It is important to follow FTA procurement requirements in order to ensure eligibility for funding.|
|Consult the Best Practices Procurement Manual for recommended procurement clauses.|
|New model vans and buses are required to be tested at the Altoona Bus Testing Facility. When planning a bus or van procurement, States and small operators should seek copies of all bus and van Altoona test reports to assist in the preparation of specifications and to ensure receipt of a quality vehicle.|
|Small purchase procedures are for procurements costing more than $2,500 and not more than $100,000. When small purchase procedures are used, price or rate quotations only need to be obtained from an adequate number of qualified sources.|
States, their subrecipients, and other direct recipients must follow Federal Buy America requirements that provide for the purchase of products of U.S. origin. These requirements apply not just to vehicles but also to all purchases of more than $100,000. Recipients must conduct pre-award/post delivery audits and certifications to verify that 60% of the vehicles components are of U.S. origin and that final assembly takes place in the U.S.
49 CFR 661.13, 661.6, 661.7 http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/49cfr661_03.html
|Small purchases under $100,000 are not subject to Buy America|
|Contractors are required to certify that the materials provided either comply or do not comply with Buy America requirements. These certifications should be retained in the contract file and be available for inspection upon request.|
Real Property and Equipment Inventory Records/Disposition Procedures
States and their subrecipients, and other direct recipients of FTA funds must maintain control over real property, facilities, and equipment, and ensure that they are used in transit service. All recipients are required to conduct a biennial physical inventory.
There are specific Federal requirements that govern the acquisition, use and disposition of real property purchased with FTA funds. "Real property" can refer either to vacant land or to land with improvements such as buildings or other structures. Recipients must pay just compensation, based on appraisals, to property owners, and displaced persons and businesses must be relocated according to the Uniform Relocation Assistance and Real Property Acquisition Policies Act of 1970, as amended.
When vehicles and equipment originally purchased with FTA funds have reached the end of their useful life or are no longer needed for service, the grantee should request disposition instructions from FTA. When requesting disposition instructions from FTA, a grantee may request approval to retain the proceeds for use on a future FTA- eligible capital project. Vehicles and equipment acquired under a section 5310 or 5311 Federal grant may be disposed of according to State procedures contained in the State Management Plan.
(FTA Circular 5010.C) and the FTA Master Agreement
States and their subrecipients under FTA's 5309, 5310, 5311 and/or 3037 programs as well as direct recipients of FTA 5309 funds must keep Federally funded equipment and facilities in good operating order and develop written procedures for maintaining vehicles, equipment and facilities. These procedures should include maintenance plans and/or programs, maintenance checklists, and the manufacturers' recommended maintenance procedures. Maintenance inspection reports also should be retained, as FTA may inspect these documents during an oversight review.
FTA Circular 5010.C and 9030.1C
|FTA recipients should have a current written vehicle maintenance plan for their Federally-funded rolling stock|
Safety and Security
The goal of FTA's Safety and Security Program is to achieve the highest practical level of safety and security for all modes of transit. In order to protect passengers, employees, revenues, and property, FTA encourages all transit systems to develop and implement a proactive system safety and security plan and to coordinate and practice their plans in drills with local emergency responders. FTA has developed guidelines and best practices that systems can use in developing their safety and security plans. FTA also provides training, and performs system safety analyses and reviews.
|Recognizing that safety and security are integral to transit operations, grantees are encouraged to have a written safety policy and security policy and plan to coordinate with local emergency responders, and to practice their plans through safety and security drills.|
Since FTA is interested in the timely execution of projects, all grantees must report project activities to FTA on a regular basis. All grantees of FTA 5309, 5310, 5311 and/or 3037 funds in areas with populations under 200,000 must report annually, no later than October 30. States and recipients of 3037 funds must file their reports quarterly, no later than 30 days after the end of each quarter. The grantee that directly applies to FTA for funding must file its reports electronically through FTA's TEAM system. The subrecipients of FTA 5309, 5310, 5311 and/or 3037 funds from a State must make the information available to the State recipient, who will then file the report with FTA.
The purpose of these reports is to update FTA on significant project events and estimated completion dates in comparison to the dates that were estimated in the original grant application. The report should include the original estimated, revised, and actual completion dates; the dates of expected or actual requests for bid, delivery, and other events; and a narrative description of project status, including reasons why the milestones were not met and any unforeseen events that affected project schedule, cost or purpose.
|By keeping milestone dates current, grantees apprise FTA on the current status of grant activities. Grantees should update the Budget and Program of Projects to reflect any changes that have occurred during the reporting period.|
Financial Status Reports
FTA requires all direct grantees to submit Financial Status Reports (FSRs) concurrently with the milestone/progress reports and to file these reports electronically through FTA's TEAM system. As with milestone/progress reports, subrecipients of FTA 5309, 5310, 5311 and/or 3037 funds from a State must make the information available to the State recipient who will then file the report with FTA.
After a grant is approved, FTA allows recipients to make changes and revisions to the project budget and program of projects. Changes that are made that do not alter the project scope or change the amount of Federal funds are called budget revisions. Changes that do alter the scope of the project or change the amount of funds originally approved require a grant amendment.
|Refer to the individual grant program circulars for specifics regarding revisions and amendments|
All grantees are required to implement projects on schedule, spend obligated funds, and close grants. FTA requires that closeout documents be submitted within 90 days after project activities are completed.
When a grantee has completed a project and has no plans to amend its scope, the grantee should promptly enter a final budget and request closeout electronically through FTA's TEAM system. A grantee can request that a project be closed even if the project is not fully disbursed. Subrecipients of FTA 5309, 5310, 5311 and/or 3037 funds from a State must make project completion information available to the State recipient who will then request project closeout from FTA. FTA will evaluate and approve the closeout requests before officially closing a project.
|By promptly requesting FTA to close projects as soon as they have been completed, a grantee can sometimes utilize remaining formula funds for other projects that are ready to proceed.|
State Management Review
FTA conducts oversight of the Section 5310 and 5311 Programs through a State Management Review. This review is conducted every three years to ensure that the State is following its procedures as documented in their State Management Plan. Some site visits to subrecipients are often made. Changes to the State Management Plan may be necessary as a result of FTA's review.