CHWA CESU National Park Service Guidance

CHWA CESU Procedures for Submitting a Research Proposal to the National Park Service

This section is currently under construction.

CHWA CESU Cooperative and Task Agreement Administrative Steps

FY 2020 Financial Assistance Deadlines (tentative):

May 3  – Last day to enter Master Cooperative Agreements into FBMS
May 3 – Last day to complete an Interagency Agreement
June 14 – Last day to enter Task Agreements into FBMS
July 12 – Last day to enter Task Agreement Modifications into FBMS
September 24 – Last day to obligate funds using Financial Assistance

Any project that will be awarded in Fiscal Year 2020 MUST be on entered into the Google form and be on the Google sheet for review by April 2, 2020 (tentative).  Please use this document as you enter your project.

You can visit past year project sheets by using the following links:

Fiscal Year 2018 Sheet

Fiscal Year 2019 Sheet 

All Purchase Requests generating from the regional office should be entered into this form and can be tracked on this sheet.

You can view the status of your existing agreement by accessing the ASAP Draw Down Report here.

You can also check the history of an award by visiting this website and searching by the awards “P” number.

The process described below is written for the use of National Park Service employees who plan to complete a project using the Chesapeake Watershed Cooperative Ecosystem Studies Unit Network (CHWA CESU). If you are a university, Principal Investigator, or NGO, please contact the CHWA CESU Research coordinator.

  1. Please contact the CHWA CESU Research Coordinator by either email or telephone to determine if the university or NGO is you would like to engage is under a master cooperative agreement (for $0) or a stand-alone cooperative agreement (for the amount of the project) will need to be completed for the project. A list of all partners can be found by visiting the CHWA CESU Website.
  2. Per the Financial Assistance Policies and Procedures 1443-2015-06, competition is strongly encouraged and expected. There are regulatory time frames for posting awards on with the minimum posting of 30 days, however, competition is not as daunting as it sounds;  both a competitive announcement or a single source justification are available:
    • Competitive Announcement – a rolling Notice for Funding Opportunity (NOFO) Announcement has been posted on that will allow universities to submit proposals based upon the type of expertise you need.  These submissions will be independently rated to determine the most qualified university or NGO.
    • Single Source Jusitification – Completing a Notice for Intent to Award (NOI) is the appropriate action if the unique skills that you need for your project reside with one university or NGO.  Remember, a single source justification must be compelling; if you are having trouble crafting a compelling justification, competition may be the appropriate route for your project.
  3. Check the NPS ATR Certification Database maintained by WASO to ensure that your ATR certification is current. ATRs must have completed the 24-hour initial ATR training or 8-hour re-certification training within the last 3 years AND be registered in the national database to serve as the key contact on a CESU project.
  4. The Agreements Technical Representative (ATR) and the Recipient/Partner need to assemble all pertinent documentation:

    *The agreement could be a stand alone Cooperative Agreement for the project or a Task Agreement that will be completed under a Master Cooperative Agreement depending on if the project is being competition or is single-source; please contact the CHWA CESU Coordinator if you’re unsure of which financial agreement to use.,
    **If the award is $25,000 or above and requires a stand-alone Cooperative Agreement, the ATR needs to complete a draft announcement for This document must also be submitted with the PR. Use the attachments below (NOFO to to build the purchase requisition and the draft announcement.
    ***OR the email confirming that you are registered and up-to-date with your ATR Refresher courses.
  5. The host park or program enters the Purchase Requisition (PR) into FBMS and uploads all supporting documents mentioned in Step 2. Have your requisitioner use UPC 411C0000 (Cooperative Agreement – No Property) when entering the PR.
  6. Once loaded into FBMS, please email Danny Filer, CHWA CESU Research Coordinator, a .pdf file of the SAP Purchase Requisition print out sheet. This will include the PR number and all information on the project so he can track the project to awarding.
  7. The requisitioner will work with their respective funds certifier and supervisor approver to send an approval request email to the purchase requests is officially submitted.
  8. The NCR Grants Specialist will review the information entered; if additional documentation is needed you will be contacted via email in three business days.
  9. If the award is $25,000 or more (including modifications), it must be posted on for 10 days. If it has to compete, there is a requirement that it be posted for 30-60 days on
  10. Please allow this time frame, from beginning to end, for each award based upon the following schedule (based upon a COMPLETED package with all supporting documentation submitted correctly):
  11. After the award has been processed in FBMS, the NCR Grants Management Specialist will print the final task agreement, sign, scan, and email the executed agreement to the ATR and the recipient simultaneously. The ATR does NOT need to sign; the recipient will sign the document and return it to the NCR Grants Management Specialist and carbon copy the ATR and the CHWA CESU Research Coordinator ( so they have the fully signed document.
  12. Each recipient should consult the terms and conditions in the task agreement as to when progress reports and the SF-425 are due to the NPS. They should be sent to the ATR, NCR Grants Management Specialist, and the CW CESU Research Coordinator.

****If the partner is working through a master cooperative agreement, there may be additional paperwork requirements related to risk assessment, especially if awards are cumulative for a fiscal year and exceeded $750,000 of federal funding.

*****Other Resources from across the CESU Network can be found on the Financial Assistance Documents Portal.

******DOI Policy AAAP-0007 Link:   Key Excerpt:
The same base identified in the recipient’s negotiated indirect cost rate agreement, if the recipient has a federally negotiated indirect cost rate agreement; or the Modified Total Direct Cost (MTDC) base in cases where the recipient does not have a federally negotiated indirect cost rate agreement or, with prior approval of the Awarding Agency, when the recipient’s federally negotiated indirect cost rate agreement base is only a subset of the MTDC (such as salaries and wages) and the use of the MTDC still results in an overall reduction in the total indirect cost recovered.  MTDC is the base defined by 2 CFR 200.68, “Modified Total Direct Cost (MTDC).”
 In cases where the recipient does not have a federally negotiated indirect cost rate agreement, under no circumstances will the Department use a modified rate based upon Total Direct Cost.

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