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Grants Management

"Excelling Beyond the Spreadsheet" - when Excel can't keep up anymore.

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Top 3 Things to Know Before Applying for a Grant

  
  
  
  
Grant seeking steps 1 2 and 3 wood blocks

Once you’re interested in a grant, there are a few steps you should take before you organize your team to apply. Determining fit and eligibility should be at the top of your list, as well as any funding restrictions, the total workload required, and due dates. At the end of the day, you want to know whether the grant is attainable and worth the investment from all angles. For those of you new to grant seeking, this blog post’s for you.

Federal Grant Awards for July 2014

  
  
  
  
grants, federal grants, federal grant award announcements for July 2014,

You know it's a wise practice to examine the lists of previous award recipients and their projects funded by grantors you are interested in. So with this in mind, here are select grant award announcements for July.

Creating a Grants Office from Scratch (Part 3): The Strategic Plan

  
  
  
  
Cogs and target  vector image representing strategy for a grants office

Welcome to part 3 of the series guiding leadership and grant directors in the quest to establish a strong grants office. (See parts 1 and 2 of the series in case you missed it.) Now that we have support for the office and know the reason for its being, let's talk strategy.

Best Practices for Grantees and Grantors: Grant Data Management

  
  
  
  
One hundred dollar bill through a glass sphere, transparency of federal grant funds

Data storage and management is something that all of us require both personally, and professionally, but rarely think about on a daily basis. Billions of dollars in federal funding has been earmarked for electronic health records, contract support to update aging computer systems and processes (think of Veterans Affairs), and a multitude of other systems. Grant data management has become increasingly important given the more focused OMB scrutiny on how federal funds are spent, and congressional focus on Transparency.gov to showcase how each federal dollar is spent in the public sector. This information is also intrinsically important from auditing, budgeting, strategic planning, and evaluation management perspectives. 

Highway Trust Fund Bankruptcy Would Hurt Local Governments

  
  
  
  
Trucks headed up rural highway, Highway Transportation Fund insolvency risk

The Highway Trust Fund, a major revenue source for infrastructure projects throughout the United States, is due to go bankrupt by September if Congress doesn't take action to shore up the fund, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT).

Choice Neighborhoods Initiative Grantees Announced

  
  
  
  
Rowhouses in City Center of Philadelphia, Choice Neighborhoods Grant Winner 2014

Back in 2010, the Obama administration began to catalyze change in distressed communities by creating the Neighborhood Revitalization Initiative (NRI), an interagency approach that would support local solutions to create opportunites in high-poverty neighborhoods. The initiative includes collaboration among stakeholders and the White House Domestic Policy Council (DPC), White House Office of Urban Affairs (WHOUA), the Departments of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), Education (ED), Justice (DoJ), Health and Human Services (HHS), and the Treasury. Since the inception of NRI, more than $350 million has been invested in more than 100 high-poverty communities, through programs like Promise Neighborhoods and Choice Neighborhoods grants, the Byrne Criminal Justice Innovation grants, and the Building Neighborhood Capacity Program.  

Grant Awards, June 2014

  
  
  
  
Award scroll representing grant award announcements

The following grant award announcements took place in June 2014. Reviewing awarded projects can be an excellent way to prepare your own application and to gauge funder priorities. Here are a few such award summaries:

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NACo in New Orleans: The 79th Annual Conference and Exposition

  
  
  
  
New Orleans on a Map

County leaders, it's that time of year again for you and your staff to attend the National Association of Counties (NACo) annual conference and expo, which will be held July 11-14 at the Morial Convention Center in New Orleans. You can register here, and can read and Tweet about the event with the hashtag #NACoANN. 

Creating a Grants Office from Scratch (Part 2): We Need One - Now What?

  
  
  
  
The components of "success" in blueprint form

For grant directors and other executive leaders focusing on assessing the viability of establishing a grants office, this article is the next installment in my series on creating a grants office from scratch. (Here's the first part of this series.)

Best Practices for Grantee and Grantor Relationships: Internal Controls

  
  
  
  
Internal controls for grantees

Internal controls – what does this term mean to you as a grant professional? To me, it almost sounds like "mission control." So who is commanding the post? From an accounting perspective, internal controls involve everything that controls risks for an organization, and ensures compliance with applicable laws and regulations (Sawyers Guide for Internal Auditors, The Institute of Internal Auditors Research Foundation, 2012). At the basic organizational level, most policies define internal control objectives as they relate to the reliability of financial reporting, timely feedback on the achievement of operational or strategic goals, and compliance with laws and regulations. Without internal controls, there would be no structure or guidelines with which to manage millions of dollars in public and private funding.

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