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SGA providing women's participation in apprenticeship

    Billing Code 4510-30

    DEPARTMENT OF LABOR

    Employment and Training Administration

    AGENCY: Employment and Training Administration (ETA), DOL.

    ACTION: Notice of availability of funds; solicitation for grant applications (SGA) providing women's participation in apprenticeship.

    SUMMARY: THIS NOTICE CONTAINS ALL OF THE NECESSARY INFORMATION AND FORMS NEEDED TO APPLY FOR GRANT FUNDING. The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), Employment and Training Administration (ETA), Bureau of Apprenticeship and Training (BAT), announces the availability of funds for four (4) categories of pilot demonstration projects seeking to identify and eliminate barriers to recruiting, retention, training, and placement of female apprentices in non traditional occupations. Funds will be provided to Community Based Organizations, employers, labor/management organizations, employer associations, apprenticeship sponsors, educational entities, state and local governments, partners and stakeholders who propose to match (i.e., cash and/or other in-kind contributions), no less than one quarter of the amount of the awards.

    DATES: Applications will be accepted commencing (date of publication). The closing date for receipt of applications is April 23, 1999 at 4 P.M. (Eastern Time) at the address below.

    ADDRESSES: Applications shall be mailed to the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration, Division of Federal Assistance, Attention: Tracie A. Czwartacki, SGA/DFA 99-007, 200 Constitution Avenue, NW, Room S-4203, Washington, D.C. 20210.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Questions should be faxed to Tracie Czwartacki, Grants Management Specialist, Division of Federal Assistance, Fax (202) 219-8739. This is not a toll-free number. All inquiries should include the SGA number (DFA 99-007) and a contact name, fax and phone number. This solicitation will also be published on the Internet on the Employment and Training Administration's Homepage at http://www.doleta.gov. Award notifications will also be published on this Homepage.

    INNOVATION IN APPRENTICESHIP FOR WOMEN SOLICITATION

    I. Background. Women's participation in apprenticeship grew gradually during the early 1970's. Two major lawsuits filed against the Department of Labor in 1976 charged discrimination against women in the construction trades and in apprenticeship. These were resolved by consent decrees that established goals for women in apprenticeship for all industries and for the construction industry in particular. Federal regulations governing apprenticeships were revised in 1978 to require sponsors to adopt written affirmative action plans with goals and timetables, including a goal for female participation in apprenticeship programs. In spite of the Federal regulations, the number of women in high-skilled/high wage occupations over the past twenty years has remained stagnant.

    The Bureau of Apprenticeship and Training (BAT) Diversity Team spent eighteen months examining the barriers which diminish the likelihood that women will know about apprenticeship opportunities, choose to apply, enter, and continue training in a registered apprenticeship program. As a result, the Bureau is seeking grantees that can address multiple barriers, such as preparatory training, child care, transportation and paid (hands-on) on-the-job training opportunities which may lead to registered apprenticeship.

    Welfare Reform and the new Workforce Investment Act give rise to a renewed crusade for removing barriers to female entrance into registered apprenticeship programs, job placement, and other training vehicles (i.e., pre-apprenticeship programs), which build a woman's capacity to competitively enter the job market.

    II. Statement of Work. In order to implement this multi-grant demonstration project, various innovations in eliminating barriers to recruiting, training, retention, counseling and placing women in high skilled occupations will be sought. The number of women in high skilled, high wage occupations over the past twenty years has remained stagnant. The Department plans to provide separate awards for each of the following four (4) categories to applicants who can demonstrate innovative approaches to eliminating barriers to women in non traditional occupations. The Department is seeking awards that will address multiple barriers, such as preparatory training, child care, transportation and paid (hands-on) on-the-job training opportunities which may lead to registered apprenticeship.

    III. Project Categories, Eligibility, Funding and Number of Awards, Tasks to be Performed.

    Category 1

    A. Title - Best Practice Strategies for Eliminating Barriers to Female Entry into the "Traditional Trades".

    B. Eligible Applicants

      - Apprenticeship Sponsors

    C. Funding Availability and Number of Awards

      - The Department expects to make up to four awards under this category with a maximum amount of $200,000. Awards cannot exceed $50,000 under this category.

    D. Tasks to be Performed

      - These applicants will delineate how they propose to utilize their specific special best practice strategies for the elimination of barriers to recruitment, retention, and placement of women in non traditional occupations.

    Category 2 -

    A. Title - Partnerships That Include Addressing Multiple Barriers and Providing On-The-Job Training.

    B. Eligible Applicants

      - Community Based Organizations, employers, labor/management organizations, employer associations, apprenticeship sponsors, educational entities, state and local governments. Applicants applying under this category must show clear delineation of the expansion of the service delivery area through urban/suburban areas.

    C. Funding Availability and Number of Awards

      - The Department expects to make up to two awards under this category with a maximum amount of $200,000. Awards cannot exceed $100,000 under this category.

    D. Tasks to be Performed

      - These applicants will address multiple barriers such as early career counseling, preparatory training, high skill career exploration, child care, transportation, recruitment and retention. Proposals should include partnerships and linkages that will leverage services and, if possible, contain an on-the-job component. Priority will be given to those applicants who provide linkages with child care, transportation, and on-the-job experience.

    Category 3 -

    A. Title - Rural Initiative for Assisting Women in Enhancing and Expanding Their Knowledge and Abilities of High Skilled Occupations Through Classroom Theory, Hands-On Training and Where Possible, Either Paid or Non Paid On-The-Job Work Experience.

    B. Eligible Applicants

      - Community Based Organizations, employers, labor/management organizations, employer associations, apprenticeship sponsors, educational entities, state and local governments servicing rural areas.

    C. Funding Availability and Number of Awards

      - The Department expects to make up to three awards under this category with a maximum amount of $150,000. Awards cannot exceed $50,000 under this category.

    D. Tasks to be Performed

      - These applicants will address the barriers for women in rural areas seeking high skill, high wage employment. Each application should address multiple barriers such as child care, transportation, career exploration, skill enhancement activities both on-the-job (if possible) and in the classroom. Priority will be given to those applicants who provide linkages with child care, transportation, and on-the-job experience.

    Category 4 -

    A. Title - Empowerment Zone and Enterprise Community Initiative

    B. Eligible Applicants

      - Community Based Organizations, employers, labor/management organizations, employer associations, apprenticeship sponsors, educational entities, or state and local governments.

    C. Funding Availability and Number of Awards

      - The Department expects to make one award under this category with a maximum amount of $200,000. Award cannot exceed $200,000 under this category.

    D. Tasks to be Performed

      - These applicants will provide career-based preparatory training in high skilled, high wage occupations and provide job opportunities for female out of school youth who are in an Empowerment Zone or Enterprise Community. The applicant will address multiple barriers, such as educational attainment, child care, transportation, life skills, skill enhancement and on-the-job work experience. Priority will be given to those applicants who have a pre-apprenticeship component or registered apprenticeship component. In addition, priority will be given to those who address career awareness issues for women, potential linkages between targeted youth and responsive classroom training opportunities that lead to skilled worker matriculation, and provide career based on-the-job (OJT) employment with established industry employers and apprenticeship sponsors.

    IV. Period of Performance. The period of performance, for all categories, will be twelve (12) months from the date of execution.

    V. Application Process. The Department is reserving funds for four (4) award categories. Under this solicitation, applicants may only apply under one category. Each proposal must include a work plan or schedule which delineates the plans for coordinating and managing the proposed tasks. Applications that do not meet the requirements will not be considered.

    VI. Application Submittal. Applicants must submit four (4) copies of their proposal, with original signatures. The applications shall be divided into two distinct parts: Part I - which contains Standard Form (SF) 424, "Application for Federal Assistance," (Appendix A) and "Budget Information Sheet," (Appendix B). All copies of the (SF) 424 MUST have original signatures of the legal entity applying for grant funding. Applicants shall indicate on the (SF) 424 the organization's IRS Status, if applicable. According to the Lobbying Disclosure Act of 1995, Section 18, an organization described in Section 501(c) 4 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 which engages in lobbying activities shall not be eligible for the receipt of federal funds constituting an award, grant, or loan. The Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance number is 17.249. In addition, the budget shall include--on a separate page (s)-- a detailed cost break-out of each line item on the Budget Information Sheet. Clearly show the proposed in-kind contribution of no less than one quarter of the amount of the awards. Part II shall contain the program narrative that demonstrates the applicant's plan and capabilities in accordance with the evaluation criteria contained in this notice. Applicants must describe their plan in light of each of the Evaluation Criteria. Applicants MUST limit the program narrative section to no more than 15 double-spaced pages, on one side only. This includes any attachments. Applications that fail to meet the page limitation requirement will not be considered.

    VII. Late Applications. Any application received after the exact date and time specified for receipt at the office designated in this notice will not be considered, unless it is received before awards are made and it - (a) was sent by registered or certified mail not later than the fifth calendar day before the date specified for receipt of applications (e.g., an application submitted in response to a solicitation requiring receipt of applications by the 20th of the month must have been mailed/post marked by the 15th of that month); or (b) was sent by the U.S. Postal Service Express Mail Next Day Service to addresses not later than 5:00 P.M. at the place of mailing two working days prior to the date specified for receipt of applications. The term "working days" excludes weekends and federal holidays. The term "post marked" means a printed, stamped or otherwise placed impression (exclusive of a postage meter machine impression) that is readily identifiable, without further action, as having been supplied or affixed on the date of mailing by an employee of the U.S. Postal Service.

    VIII. Hand Delivered Proposals. It is preferred that applications be mailed at least five days prior to the closing date. To be considered for funding, hand delivered applications must be received by 4:00 P.M., (Eastern Time), on the closing date at the specified address. TELEGRAPHED AND/FAXED APPLICATIONS WILL NOT BE HONORED. Failure to adhere to the above instructions will be a basis for a determination of nonresponsiveness. Overnight express mail from carriers other than the U.S. Postal Service will be considered hand-delivered applications and MUST BE RECEIVED by the above specified date and time.

    IX. Review Process. A careful evaluation of applications will be made by a technical review panel who will evaluate the applications against the criteria listed below. The panel results are advisory in nature and not binding on the Grant Officer. The Government may elect to award the grant with or without discussions with the offeror. In situations without discussions, an award will be based on the offeror's signature on the (SF) 424, which constitutes a binding offer. Awards will be those in the best interest of the Government.

    Criteria for Evaluation:

    Category One-Evaluation Criteria

      > Plan, Coordinate, and Manage the Project

      The offerors are expected to delineate how they propose to plan, manage, and coordinate the project under the direction of BAT, and with preliminary guidance from the Diversity Team (15 points);

      > Clear Delineation of Best Practice Strategies

      The offerors are expected to indicate their specific best practice strategies to be utilized in reducing and eliminating barriers to recruitment, retention, training, and placement of women in non traditional occupations (65 points);

      > In-kind Contribution

      The offerors are expected to indicate how they propose to match 25% of the grant award, or provide an in-kind contribution which has a value equal to or greater than 25% of the grant award (10 points);

      > Work Plan and/or Schedule

      The degree to which the offerors have delineated milestones and/or target dates for implementing the project (10 points).

    Category Two - Evaluation Criteria

      > Plan, Coordinate, and Manage the Project

      The offerors are expected to delineate how they propose to plan, manage, and coordinate the project under the direction of BAT, and with preliminary guidance from the Diversity Team (15 points);

      > Approach, Partnership and Linkages Proposed to Address Barriers, and On-The-Job Experience Opportunities

      The offerors are expected to indicate how they propose to address multiple barriers to female participation in apprenticeship. Also, they should delineate how they will leverage child care and/or transportation services from their partnerships and linkages, and if possible, provide an on-the-job training component (65 points);

      > In-kind Contribution

      The offerors are expected to indicate how they propose to match 25% of the grant award, or provide an in-kind contribution which has a value equal to or greater than 25% of the grant award (10 points);

      > Work Plan and/or Schedule

      The degree to which the offerors have delineated milestones and/or target dates for implementing the project (10 points).

    Category Three - Evaluation Criteria

      > Plan, Coordinate, and Manage the Project

      The offerors are expected to delineate how they propose to plan, manage, and coordinate the project under the direction of BAT, and with preliminary guidance from the Diversity Team (15 points);

      > Approach, Partnership and Linkages Proposed to Address Barriers, in Rural Areas, to Female Participation in Apprenticeship, and On-The-Job Experience Opportunities

      The offerors are expected to indicate how they propose to address multiple barriers in rural areas, to female participation in apprenticeship. Also, they should delineate how they will leverage child care and/or transportation services from their partners and linkages, and provide, if possible, on-the-job experience opportunities (65 points);

      > In-kind Contribution

      The offerors are expected to indicate how they propose to match 25% of the grant award, or provide an in-kind contribution which has a value equal to or greater than 25% of the grant award (10 points);

      > Work Plan and/or Schedule

      The degree to which the offerors have delineated milestones and/or target dates for implementing the project (10 points).

    Category Four - Evaluation Criteria

      > Plan, Coordinate, and Manage the Project

      The successful offeror is expected to delineate how they propose to plan, manage, and coordinate the project under the direction of BAT, and with preliminary guidance from the Diversity Team (15 points);

      > Career - Based Preparatory Training/Empowerment Zone and Enterprise Community

      The offeror is expected to indicate how they propose to address multiple barriers, such as educational attainment, child care, transportation, life skills, skill enhancement and on-the-job experience for female out-of-school youth who are seeking training opportunities in high skilled, high wage occupations, but are living in an Empowerment Zone and Enterprise Community (65 points);

      > In-kind Contribution

      The offeror is expected to indicate how they propose to match 25% of the grant award, or provide an in-kind contribution which has a value equal to or greater than 25% of the grant award (10 points);

      > Work Plan and/or Schedule

      The degree to which the offeror has delineated milestones and/or target dates for implementing the project (10 points).

      The grants will be awarded based on applicant response to the above mentioned criteria and what is otherwise most advantageous to the Department.

    X. Reporting Requirements

      Quarterly Progress and Financial Reports

      Final Report

      Each awardee will receive a briefing from a BAT Diversity Team representative on the teams’ assessment of barriers to female participation in apprenticeship.

    Signed in Washington, D.C., this 8th day of March 1999.

    Laura Cesario, Grant Officer

    Appendix A: (SF) 424-Application Form

    Appendix B: Budget Information Form