Source Water Protection: Plan Implementation Grant Application - EH: Minnesota Department of Health FAQ

Plan Implementation Grant: Frequently Asked Questions
Source Water Protection

Q: Who is eligible to receive a Source Water Protection (SWP) plan implementation grant?
A: Only public water suppliers that have a source water protection plan that is approved by the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) may apply for a grant.

Q: Where does the funding come from for these grants?
A: The Minnesota Department of Health has received money from the Clean Water Land and Legacy Amendment Fund to pay for the Source Water Protection Plan Implementation Grant Program.

Q: What activities are eligible?
A: Only activities that are specifically mentioned in an approved SWP plan are eligible. The activities must be referenced on the application form by the page number(s) from the SWP plan. Also, the work must be limited to inside the geographic extent of the source water protection area.

Q: Is there a time limit for spending grant money?
A: Yes, the money that is awarded during the current state fiscal year must be spent within the state biennium in which the funding was budgeted.

Q: Can a public water supplier apply for more than one of the same category of grant?
A: Once a public water supplier has received final payment from the MDH for an existing grant, it is eligible to apply for another of the same category of grant.

Q: Can a public water supplier submit more that one application for the same category of grant at a time?
A: The MDH will score only the first grant application that it receives.

Q: If a public water supplier receives an implementation grant, can it also apply for a competitive grant at the same time?
A: Yes, it can be awarded both an implementation and competitive grant, if the grants are not the same category, and respond to separate grant notifications.  Please note that it is not acceptable to use the plan implementation award as a cost share for the competitive grants.

Q: Can I send my application now, before I see an official announcement about the grant program?
A: No, the Minnesota Department of Health will only accept grant applications during the time period over which the notification for grant availability is posted.  The Minnesota Department of Health will notify you when a grant application period is open.

Q: How do I fill out the application?
A: In section called “work item,” describe the activity that you wish to implement. Make sure the activity refers to a source water protection measure included in the source water protection plan. For each activity that you are planning, use a separate box on the application form to describe it.  Also, be sure to include the estimated cost of performing the activity.

Q: Who can help me determine which activities to propose for funding?
A: The planner or hydrologist who are assigned to you will help you put together an application. To find out who the planner in your area is, please see the Source Water Protection Area Planner and Hydrologist Map.

Q: Do I need to sign the application form?
A: Yes, make sure you sign the application. Unsigned forms are not accepted.

Q: Can I use the grant funds for activities that took place in the past?
A: No, the grant money can be used only for activities that will take place after all the required signatures on the grant agreement have been obtained.

Q: What happens if an application is lost in the mail or electronically?
A: MDH is not responsible for grant applications that get lost in the mail or which are not received via the internet. If we do not receive your application, you will have to reapply.

Q: Can I use the grant funds to pay for staff salary?
A: Yes, if the activity is included in your SWP plan.

Q: If after I am awarded the grant I realize that I miscalculated the budget and I need more money to complete the work items, can I ask for additional money?
A: No, once the grant is awarded you can not change the grant amount or the work items that have been approved. You may have other options, like: refusing the grant and reapplying with the correct amount when a new notification is posted; contributing the difference from your own funds.

Q: If a single water supplier has two distinctly different WHP plans for two separate DWSMAs, can they apply for up to $10,000 for each DWSMA/WHP plan?
A: No, we accept only one application at a time per grant program.

Q: Are grants awarded from the Clean Water Land and Legacy Amendment Fund tax exempt?
A: These grants fall under the “aid” and “assistance” category, therefore they are not taxable.

Q: Am I allowed to reallocate funds between budget lines?
A: If necessitated by the nature of the project, a grantee is allowed to reallocate up to 10% of the amount originally awarded for a given expense category to another approved category without obtaining permission from the MDH. Should the grantee find it necessary to re-budget the grant beyond the 10% reallocation allowance, a written or e-mail request must be submitted to the MDH for approval.

Q: Can I use the grant funds to pay for preparing and/or mailing the consumer confidence report?
A: No. You can use the grant funds in relation to the consumer confidence report only if you add an article or a newsletter to the regular mailing that goes to the customers.  

Q: Can I use the grant funds to pay fees for well sealing or well construction?
A: No, inspection or permitting fees will not be reimbursed.

Q: Are two bids or two quotes required with the grant application?
A:  Public water supplier are not required to submit two bids/quotes with their grant application.  However, it is in their best interest to provide it whenever it is possible and practical.

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Updated Wednesday, August 09, 2017 at 04:00PM