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Specialty Crop Block Grant Program - Farm Bill

Number: 10.170
Agency: Department of Agriculture
Office: Agricultural Marketing Service

Program Information 

Program Number/Title (010):
10.170 Specialty Crop Block Grant Program - Farm Bill
Federal Agency (030):
Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
Authorization (040):
Section 701 of the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 extends Section 10109 of the Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008, Public Law 110-246 (The Farm Bill) for one year until September 30, 2013.
Objectives (050):
To solely enhance the competitiveness of specialty crops defined as fruits and vegetables, dried fruit, tree nuts, horticulture, and nursery crops (including floriculture).
Types of Assistance (060):
Uses and Use Restrictions (070):
Projects must solely enhance the competitiveness of specialty crops.
Eligibility Requirements (080)
Applicant Eligibility (081):
The State department of agriculture, agency, commission, or department of a State government responsible for agriculture within any of the 50 States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, Guam, American Samoa, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands are eligible to receive grants under this program.
Beneficiary Eligibility (082):
State department of agriculture, agency, commission, or department of a State government responsible for agriculture within the State.
Credentials/Documentation (083):
A grant agreement is entered into between the Agricultural Marketing Service and the State department of agriculture that submits the application. 2 CFR Part 225 applies to this program. OMB Circular No. A-87 applies to this program.
Application and Award Process (090)
Preapplication Coordination (091):
Preapplication coordination is required. Environmental impact information is not required for this program. This program is excluded from coverage under E.O. 12372.
Application Procedures (092):
OMB Circular No. A-102 applies to this program. This program is excluded from coverage under OMB Circular No. A-110. 7 CFR Parts 3016 and 3019, and 2 CFR Part 215 apply to this program. The State department of agriculture submits SF-424 and SF-424B, and a State plan identifying the lead agency charged with the responsibility of carrying out the plan and indicating how the grant funds will be utilized solely to enhance the competitiveness of specialty crops. In developing their plans, States are encouraged to take into consideration the views of beginners and socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers, and take steps to perform outreach to these groups. The States should develop a transparent process of receiving and consideriing public comment. State departments of agriculture are encouraged to develop their State plans through a competitive process in order to ensure maximum public input and benefit. States are encouraged to submit grant plans that include multi-State and regional project proposals.
Award Procedure (093):
Applications are reviewed by the Agricultural Marketing Service. Grantees are notified of the amount awarded by a notice of award. Grant payments are made by electronic funds transfer.
Deadlines (094):
Contact the headquarters or regional office, as appropriate, for application deadlines.
Range of Approval/Disapproval Time (095):
A State department of agriculture eligible applicant should contact the headquarters office for application deadlines. Other applicants should contact their local State department of agriculture office. State contacts can be found at
Appeals (096):
No formal appeal procedure.
Renewals (097):
Awards are for 3 calendar years. Additional time to complete the project may be requested.
Assistance Consideration (100)
Formula and Matching Requirements (101):
Statutory formulas are not applicable to this program.
This program has no matching requirements.
This program does not have MOE requirements.
Length and Time Phasing of Assistance (102):
Funds are advanced or reimbursed. Applicants have up to 3 calendar years to use the funds. See for grant agreement award terms and conditions to obtain information on how assistance is awarded/released. See the following for information on how assistance is awarded/released: As provided for in agreements.
Post Assistance Requirements (110)
Reports (111):
No program reports are required. Cash reports are required as provided for in agreements. Annual performance reports are required. A final performance report and a final financial report are required within 90 days after the expiration date of the grant period. The SF-270 reports on what was requested and expended previously. The State departments of agriculture are required to monitor their sub-awardees' projects.
Audits (112):
In accordance with the provisions of OMB Circular No. A-133 (Revised, June 27, 2003), "Audits of States, Local Governments, and Non-Profit Organizations," nonfederal entities that expend financial assistance of $500,000 or more in Federal awards will have a single or a program-specific audit conducted for that year. Nonfederal entities that expend less than $500,000 a year in Federal awards are exempt from Federal audit requirements for that year, except as noted in Circular No. A-133. The State is required to conduct an audit of the expenditures of specialty crop block grant funds. Not later than 30 days after completion of the audit, the State shall submit a copy of the audit results to the Agricultural Marketing Service. States should also refer to 7 CFR Part 3052, Audits of States, Local Governments, and Non-Profit Organizations, for further information on audit requirements.
Records (113):
The State shall retain financial and other records relating to the funds and these programs for a period of three years after the final Federal Financial Report (SF-425) is received by the Agricultural Marketing Service or until final resolution of any audit findings or litigation claims relating to this program.
Financial Information (120)
Obligations (122):
(Formula Grants) FY 13 $52,000,000; FY 14 est $73,000,000; and FY 15 est $73,000,000
Range and Average of Financial Assistance (123):
As provided for in applicable statutes.
Program Accomplishments (130):
Not Applicable.
Regulations, Guidelines, and Literature (140):
Not Applicable.
Information Contacts (150)
Regional or Local Office (151) :
Headquarters Office (152):
Trista Etzig 1400 Independence Ave. SW, Rm. 2077, Stop 0235, Washington, District of Columbia 20250 Email: Phone: 202-690-4942
Website Address (153):
Examples of Funded Projects (170):
Not Applicable.
Criteria for Selecting Proposals (180):
Not Applicable.