Partners for Fish and Wildlife
Department of the Interior, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, National Wildlife Refuge System, Division of Natural Resources and Conservation Planning, Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number: 15.631 Authority: Partners for Fish and Wildlife Act of 2006, S.260 Public Law 109-294; Fish and Wildlife Act of 1956, 16 U.S.C. 742a-c, 747e-742j; and Fish and Wildlife Coordination Act of 1958, 16 U.S.C. 661 667(e). The Partners for Fish and Wildlife (PFW) Program is a voluntary, incentive-based program that provides direct technical assistance and financial assistance in the form of cooperative and grant agreements to private landowners to restore and conserve fish and wildlife habitat for the benefit of federal trust resources. The PFW Program is delivered through more than 250 full-time staff, active in all 50 States and territories. Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program staff coordinate with project partners, stakeholders and other Service programs to identify geographic focus areas and develop habitat conservation priorities within these focus areas. Geographic focus areas define where the program directs resources to conserve habitat for federal trust species. Project work plans are developed strategically, in coordination with partners, and with substantial involvement from Service field staff. The program has been in existence since 1987 and has over 30 years of successful delivery. Project selection will seek to align or support the Secretary’s priorities. It also advance the Department of the Interior’s mission, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s mission, and PFW’s mission, promote biological diversity, and based upon sound scientific biological principles. Program strategic plans inform the types of projects funded under this opportunity. ***Applicants seeking technical or financial assistance from the PFW Program are requested to consult with the Regional PFW Program office BEFORE developing or submitting an application (see Section G. Agency Contacts at the end of this announcement).*** Conservation activities and projects do not have to meet all of the selection criteria; however, field staff will give the highest funding priority status to proposed projects that meet more of the following criteria (sequence of listing does not imply order of preference): Project selection will seek to align or support the Secretary’s priorities. Program funding will enhance the missions of DOI, FWS, and PFW. Restoring trust with local communities: The PFW program has local field biologists across all 50 states stationed and living in the communities they serve which enhances trust and allows sustainable relationship building. Projects which support and build trust with local communities will receive high prioritization. Modernizing our infrastructure: The PFW program will assist with modernizing fish passage structures to allow safe travel by aquatic resources and at the same time, allow for structural stability by designing units to avoid flood damage. Additionally, wetland levees, water control structures, and fencing projects are a few examples of modernizing infrastructure to support American conservation. Ensuring sovereignty means something: Many PFW projects support tribal operations and PFW staff will continue to recognize opportunities to enhance those relationships. Hunt/Fish: The PFW Program will continue to deliver on-the-ground habitat to support robust populations of wildlife for recreational use by the American public. These will support Secretarial Orders 3347, 3356, and 3362. National Wildlife Refuge System: PFW Program staff will favor conservation activities and projects that are on private lands near National Wildlife Refuge (Refuges) lands. Activities or projects that complement conservation practices on Refuges or resolve problems on Refuges that are caused by off-refuge land use practices will be given higher priority. Expand priority habitats, reduce habitat fragmentation, establish conservation buffers, and provide wildlife movement corridors that result in self-sustaining systems: Our staff will give preference to habitat improvement projects near protected land, including land owned or controlled by the National Wildlife Refuge System, National Forests, National Park Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture, other federal agencies, tribal, state agencies, or nongovernment entities. Regional strategic plans and priorities: PFW Program regional and field staff work with conservation partners to identify habitat conservation priorities and delineate geographic focus areas in our Regional strategic plans. The geographic focus areas represent an integration of shared habitat conservation priorities among the Service, conservation partners, and stakeholders. We will concentrate our technical and financial resources in these focus areas to conserve priority habitat. Habitat improvement projects that meet region-specific priorities and are located within geographic focus areas will receive higher priority. However, field staff are not prohibited from implementing high-value habitat improvement projects outside of these geographic focus areas. Most PFW Program projects are developed collaboratively with the landowner, PFW Program local staff, and other conservation partners. PFW Program biologists are able to provide technical biological information and are knowledgeable about state-of-the-art techniques to restore, enhance, and protect fish and wildlife habitats for the benefit of federal trust species. If an applicant chooses to prepare an application independently, the application will be reviewed to determine if the potential project is consistent with the Department of the Interior Secretary’s priorities, FWS Priorities, goals of the PFW Program Strategic Plan, and if the potential project meets the Eligibility Requirements and Criteria as stated in the full announcement. PFW Program field staff are responsible for identifying and selecting habitat conservation projects, with concurrence from the field station Project Leader, or other appropriate authority. Field staff also use the project selection criteria to identify projects that maximize benefits to federal trust species, and use program resources in the most effective and efficient manner. Cost sharing is encouraged but not required. Cost sharing is the PFW Program’s strategy to leverage program funds with funds from other federal and non-federal partners to deliver habitat conservation cost effectively. All proposals should strive to secure a cost share ratio of one partner dollar for each PFW Program dollar. If other considerations are equal, priority for funding will be given to projects that have agreements longer in duration, involve greater partnership support and cost sharing, and have the greatest cost effectiveness. Prior to participating in any review or evaluation process, all staff and peer reviewers, evaluators, panel members, and advisors must sign and return to the program office point of contact the “Department of the Interior Conflict of Interest Certification” form. For a copy of this form, contact the Service point of contact identified in the Agency Contacts section below.