This post was originally published on April 17, 2017 and updated on July 3, 2019.
Federal financial assistance is the transfer of anything of value, most often money, from a federal agency to a non-federal entity.
In the most general sense, federal financial assistance is a tool the government uses to serve public purposes as defined by Congress.
Federal financial assistance is a very broad term, and it can take on a variety of more precise forms.
- One of the most common forms is a grant, which we write about quite often on this blog.
- Other examples of federal financial assistance include cooperative agreements, donations of property, direct appropriations, food commodities, loans, interest subsidies, and insurance.
- Each type of federal financial assistance serves different purposes and has different legal and regulatory frameworks that govern how that specific assistance can be used.
Continue reading What Is Federal Financial Assistance? [Updated]
As with many projects in life, it is best to begin your planning and writing as early as you can. When applying for federal grants, the OMB Uniform Guidance sets forth a 30 to 60 day range for federal funding opportunities to be open:
“(b) The Federal awarding agency must generally make all funding opportunities available for application for at least 60 calendar days. The Federal awarding agency may make a determination to have a less than 60 calendar day availability period but no funding opportunity should be available for less than 30 calendar days unless exigent circumstances require as determined by the Federal awarding agency head or delegate.” §200.203(b)
A reasonable follow-up question to this is what to do if you would like to begin working on a grant application more than two months in advance.
Continue reading Grant Writing Basics: How to Start Working on Future Funding Opportunities
If you haven’t visited USAspending.gov lately, do yourself a favor and check it out (as soon as you’re done reading this post, of course). The website’s revamped design goes far deeper than just a new coat of paint.
For example, USAspending.gov’s new Data Lab beta site could prove to be a (heavenly) time-suck for data analysis nerds.
Its excellent visuals and interactive charts make diving into the world of government spending a little like exploring Hawaii’s coral reefs.
Photo Credit: National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration
What is the USAspending.gov Data Lab?
Continue reading Take a Deeper Dive into Federal Government Spending with USAspending.gov’s Data Lab
The 2017 fiscal year has been an important one for federal government grants. Milestones include the completion of a Digital Accountability and Transparency Act of 2014 (DATA Act) pilot program and the release of the OMB M-17-26 Reducing Burden for Federal Agencies by Rescinding and Modifying OMB Memorandum.
For seasoned grant professionals, you have probably heard about the DATA Act and are familiar with memos from OMB that provide new guidance on how to better manage and implement grants.
Continue reading What’s New with Grant Policies? DATA Act & OMB Memos
Nearly every week, 50 or more new grant opportunities are posted to Grants.gov by federal grant-making agencies. Each of these grants aims to support a specific government objective – such as protecting our parks, funding research and development, or strengthening underserved communities.
This new blog series spotlights the federal grant-making agencies and the causes to which they are dedicated in service to the general public.
Continue reading Grant Agency Spotlight: U.S. Department of Education
The passage of the Digital Accountability and Transparency Act of 2014 (DATA Act) has unlocked a wider array of U.S. government spending data for public consumption. Among the beneficiaries of this data are federal grant applicants and the new beta version of USAspending.gov. (Note: The data is still being migrated, so more historical data is available here.)
How Could This Data Help?
Continue reading Using USAspending.gov Data for Grant Applications
Lots of grants are awarded by different grant-making agencies each year, so you may wonder—where do the grants go? Who receives the funding?
These are important questions. We will begin to answer them here, and we will also tell you where you can find more specific answers.
Continue reading Where Do Grants Go? Awards, USAspending.gov, and the DATA Act