Category Archive: NSGP

Coming soon, the 2014 nonprofit securitygrant

Posted on March 12, 2014

We expect the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to release the guidance on the program to the states on or about March 18th. We don’t expect any major changes in the requirements. New York DHSES will secure the necessary approvals and release their Request for Applications the following week.

This year’s budget includes $13 million in federal funding to help protect high-risk non-profit institutions from terrorist attacks. This is a $3 million increase over the fiscal year 2013 funding levels for the Nonprofit Security Grant Program. New York nonprofits must pre-qualify (see below), which may take several weeks (see below). While completing the pre-qualification process, organizations should assemble the materials for their Investification Justification (see here). Get started now!

New York’s new requirement

Pre-qualify with NY State. Applications from New York nonprofit organizations that have not “pre-qualified” will not be considered, so we recommend that you start this process immediately. Your pre-qualification package cannot be approved overnight – don’t wait until the last minute.

See the Grants Gateway at http://grantsreform.ny.gov/.

  • Written resources. The Grants Gateway website contains the definitive information. Be sure to check the required list of documents at Documents and Questions. More information can be found at the FAQs About Prequalification and the full manual.
  • Assistance. Any organization unsure about how to respond to the questions should contact the Statewide Grants Reform office at grantsgatewayhelp@budget.ny.gov or (518) 474-5595. While we try to learn as much as we can, the advice given by the Statewide Grants Reform office is definitive.
  • Documents. The Grants Gateway website has lots of information. You should consider their requirements and answers as the final word. A short list of the documents that organizations are required to submit include:
    1. Certificate of Incorporation or equivalent document.
    2. IRS 501(c)(3) determination letter. As long as your organization is seeking tax exempt status and can show that it
      has applied for a 501(c)(3) tax exemption from the IRS, then the uploading of a copy of your application form or a copy of the receipt letter from the IRS, is sufficient. They also recognize that some tax exempt organizations are not required to file for IRS 501(c)(3) recognition.Your organization will not be penalized if you do not submit its determination letter, if:
      • you are not required to have one; and
      • you write a letter attesting to the fact. For example, houses of worship and organizations incorporated pre-1969 are not required to file for 501(c)(3) recognition . Religious organizations need only provide a statement, including their official name, stating that they are a religious corporation and exempt from IRS recognition.
  • IRS 990. Houses of worship and some other religious corporations are not required to file an IRS 990. If your organization is not required to file an IRS 990, Religious organizations need only include a statement, including their official name, stating that you are a religious corporation and exempt from the requirement to file an IRS 990. If you do file, please include your latest IRS Form 990.
  • Audit/Reviews and Findings. In NY, organizations with revenues greater than $250,000 must provide an independently audited financial statement. Organizations with revenues of less than $250,000 but greater than $100,000, must provide a financial statement reviewed by a CPA. Organizations with revenues of less than $100,000 need only provide a copy of the most recent internal financial report.
  • Exceptions.
    • Religious organizations pursuing religious activity are exempt from the financial filing requirements regarding audit/reviews and findings.
      If you are a religious organization pursuing religious activity, you need only include a statement, including your official name, stating that you are a religious corporation pursuing religious activity and not required to report or file financial information with the New York State Attorney General.
    • However, religious organizations that engage in any form of secular activity (i.e. food bank, daycare, social justice advocacy, secular education, job training, conservation, after school athletics, etc.) must file through the Grants Gateway their audit/reviews or findings, consistent with their level revenues .
    • JCRC has inquired whether certain schools, exempt from filing with the New York State Attorney General, are required to file audit/reviews or findings.
  • NY State Attorney General Charities Bureau Form CHAR500 or CHAR410. Most not-for-profit organizations must file either a CHAR 410 (for newly formed entities within the first year of operations) or a recent CHAR 500 with the NY State Charities Bureau. Religious organizations, as well as educational corporations that confine solicitations to their student body, alumni, faculty and trustees and their families; need only include a statement, including their official name, stating that they are a religious or an educational corporation and exempt from registration with the New York State Attorney General.
  • Board of Directors Profile. A sample profile template can be found here. This document should include board member names and affiliations, a list of the board committees and chairs, and a list of board officers.
  • Senior Leadership Resumes.
    Not-for-profits must upload the resumes or CV’s of their Senior Leadership team. The positions included should be Chief Executive Officer, Chief Operating Officer, Chief Financial Officer, Executive Director, President, or other high ranking officials. Individuals should upload their own resume or CV.
  • Corporate Bylaws

There are also questions covering organizational policies supporting good governance, etc. The Grants Gateway (especially the manual) website has the rationale, samples and links to other sites with further information.

The Grant itself

Vulnerability assessment. We expect that the “Investment Justification” will again be based on a “previously conducted vulnerability assessment.” See Getting a vulnerability assessment for more details and suggestions.

  • Read and understand the Investment Justification. Download the Investment Justification from last year here. There will be some changes, but they are usually minor. You can find JCRC-NY’s guidance on each section on the “Security Grants” webpage (and below). Note: many applicants lost points last year because they did not properly respond to the questions.

There will be a 2014 grant…soon

Status

This year’s budget includes $13 million in federal funding to help protect high-risk non-profit institutions from terrorist attacks. This is a $3 million increase over the fiscal year 2013 funding levels for the Nonprofit Security Grant Program. We don’t know when the U.S. Department of Homeland Security will release the guidance on the program (best guess mid to late March), but we don’t expect any major changes. Get started now!

The newest requirement

Pre-qualify with NY State. Applications from New York nonprofit organizations that have not “pre-qualified” will not be considered, so start this process immediately. See the Grants Gateway at http://grantsreform.ny.gov/grantees. We requested a webinar on pre-qualification to assist you. Stay tuned.

  • Documents. Here is a quick summary of the necessary documents (the official website contains the definitive information). Make sure to check the required list of documents at Documents and Questions. There is more information at FAQs About Prequalification and a full manual. You will need:
    1. Certificate of Incorporation or equivalent document.
    2. IRS 501(c)(3) determination letter. As long as your organization is seeking tax exempt status and can show that it
      has applied for either a 501(c)(3) or 501(c)(4) tax exemption from the IRS, then by uploading a copy of your application form or a copy of the receipt letter from the IRS, everything
      should be fine. Also, we recognize that some tax exempt organizations are not required to
      file for a 501(c)(3), so they will not be penalized for not producing this document. [JCRC comment: Houses of worship are not required to file for 501(c)(3) recognition. They should simply state, on organizational letterhead: As a religious corporation they are not required to secure an IRS 501(c)(3) determination letter.]
    3. IRS 990. Houses of worship and some other religious corporations are not required to file an IRS 990. [JCRC comment: Houses of worship are not required to file for 501(c)(3) recognition. They should simply state, on organizational letterhead: As a religious corporation they are not required to file IRS Form 990.]
    4. Audit/Reviews and Findings.In NY, organizations with revenues greater than $250K
      must provide an independently audited financial statement. Organizations with revenues of less than $250K but greater than $100K, must provide a financial statement reviewed by a CPA. Organizations with revenues of less than $100K need only provide a copy of the most recent internal financial report. [JCRC comment: This is a requirement, if your organization’s revenues exceed $250,000 there is no alternative. We are afraid that this will disqualify many organizations.]
    5. CHAR500 or CHAR410. All not-for-profit organizations must file either a CHAR 410 (for newly formed entities within the first year of operations) or a recent CHAR 500 with the NY State
      Charities Bureau
      . [JCRC comment: There is a form to request an exemption (Schedule E).]
    6. Board of Directors Profile. A sample profile template can be found here. This document should include board member names and affiliations, a list of the board committees and chairs, and a list of board officers.
    7. Senior Leadership Resumes. Not-for-profits must upload the resumes or CVs of their Senior Leadership team. The positions included should be Chief Executive Officer, Chief Operating Officer, Chief Financial Officer, Executive Director, President, or other high ranking officials. Individuals should upload their own resume or CV.
    8. Corporate Bylaws

There are also questions about governance, etc.

The Grant itself

Vulnerability assessment. We expect that the “Investment Justification” will again be based on a “previously conducted vulnerability assessment.” See Getting a vulnerability assessment for more details and suggestions.

  • Read and understand the Investment Justification. Download the Investment Justification from last year here. There will be some changes, but they are usually minor. You can find JCRC-NY’s guidance on each section on the “Security Grants” webpage (and below). Note: many applicants lost points last year because they did not properly respond to the questions.

Continue Reading

Prospects look good for a 2014 grant

Update January 15: Today, the House voted overwhelmingly, 359-67, to approve a $1.1 trillion spending bill for the current fiscal year. It is expected to move quickly through the Senate and be signed by the President. The bill appropriates $13 million for the Nonprofit Security Grant Program, an increase of 30% over last year.

Update January 14: Congress filed the omnibus appropriations bill late yesterday, including funding for the Nonprofit Security Grant Program. The bill will be debated over the weekend.

Thanks to the incredible work of a coalition led by The Jewish Federations of North America/JFNA (with JCRC-NY and UJA-Federation playing active roles) there is likely to be another round of the Nonprofit Security Grant Program (NSGP). The JFNA Washington Office, directed by William Daroff, and its Senior Director, Legislative Affairs, Rob Goldberg deserve our most heartfelt gratitude.

For those who want the gory details: The House and Senate Appropriations Committees continue work to complete the FY14 Omnibus Appropriations bills before the current Continuing Resolution (CR) expires on January 15th. As has been the case over the past few years, it is doubtful that they will complete their work before the deadline, so there is likely to be another, short CR, giving Congress additional time to debate and vote (after all, the Omnibus bills cover virtually the entire federal budget). According to reports as of January 8th, the DHS budget was not yet approved, but is largely completed. Once the DHS budget is approved, our Washington champions will learn how much was allocated for the NSGP.

Appropriators on both sides of the aisle and chambers have pressed for a clean bill that does not include divisive partisan policy riders.  However, once the bill is filed and details emerge there are likely to be calls for amendments to diminish or obstruct implementation of Obamacare, EPA rules, and Wall Street protections or support anti-abortion policies (more than 130 such policy riders that have been mentioned, including aid for houses of worship damaged by Superstorm Sandy). There also remain, especially in the House, a number of conservatives who would still prefer passing a year-long CR at the lower FY13 spending level.

Get Ready

We strongly urge organizations contemplating applying for a grant to immediately take steps to deal with some of the details of the application package:

  • Pre-qualify with NY State. Applications from New York nonprofit organizations that have not “pre-qualified” will not be considered, so start this process immediately. There are five parts of this process so we strongly urge you to start now because it may take some time. We will schedule a webinar on pre-qualification in the near future.

Effective August 1, 2013, not-for-profit organizations must be prequalified in order to do business with New York State (i.e., to receive a grant). In order to prequalify, not-for-profit organizations must submit an online Prequalification Application through the Grants Gateway. The Prequalification Application is comprised of five components to gauge your organizational structure and the types of services you provide. The required forms and document uploads are all part of the Document Vault. Resources to complete the application and associated document vault can be found in the Quick Links Section of the Grants Gateway website: http://grantsreform.ny.gov/Grantees.

  • Vulnerability assessment. We expect that the “Investment Justification” will again be based on a “previously conducted vulnerability assessment.” See Getting a vulnerability assessment for more details and suggestions.
  • Read and understand the Investment Justification. Download the Investment Justification from last year here. There will be some changes, but they are usually minor. You can find JCRC-NY’s guidance on each section on the “Security Grants” webpage (and below). Note: many applicants lost points last year because they did not properly respond to the questions.

Schumer, Gillibrand secure over $3.4 million for 39 at-risk Jewish organizations

SCHUMER, GILLIBRAND SECURE OVER $3.4 MILLION TO IMPROVE EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS FOR RELIGIOUS INSTITUTIONS & ORGANIZATIONS IN-AND-AROUND NYC; GRANTS AWARDED TO 39 AT-RISK JEWISH SCHOOLS AND CONGREGATIONS

Schumer and Gillibrand Secured over 30% Of Total Funding For Organizations Based in New York – Out of the Total $10 Million Granted to Awardees Across the Country

The Awardees Include 39 Jewish Educational Institutions and Congregations; The Money Will Help These At-Risk Nonprofits For Security Preparedness

Schumer, Gillibrand: These Schools and Congregations are Vital Parts of our Community and Like Institutions Have Been Targeted Before; We Must Do All We Can to Protect All At-Risk Institutions

U.S. Senators Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand today announced that 39 New York Jewish organizations, including schools and congregations, and more have received a combined total of $3,425,148 for the 2013 fiscal year as Urban Areas Security Initiative (UASI) Nonprofit Security Grant Program (NSGP) Awardees. The program, run by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), awards federal funds to nonprofit organizations that are at a high risk of a national terrorist attack to encourage preparedness efforts.

“Would-be evildoers have previously targeted schools and congregations for attacks and that’s why FEMA’s Nonprofit Security Grant Program is critical in making sure that high-risk organizations like Jewish schools and congregations are safe and protected from terrorist attacks,” said Schumer. “It is especially important for organizations in and around New York City to receive this federal funding, which will go a long way to ensure that they are fully prepared for whatever may happen in the future.”

“New York’s religious institutions and non-profit organizations are the backbone of our communities,” Senator Gillibrand said. “No New Yorker, or American, should ever have to live or worship in fear of being targeted because of who they are or what they believe. As we have seen, New York City’s places of faith, worship and community gatherings continue to be targeted by hatred. These homeland security dollars will help arm our non-profits with the resources they need to guard us from attacks and keep us safe.”

The Nonprofit Security Grant Program (NSGP) is run under the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) Urban Areas Security Initiative (UASI). For the 2013 fiscal year, the UASI NSGP was budgeted $10 million. Only eligible nonprofit organizations, as described by the 501(c)(3) tax code of 1986, may apply for this grant. To be eligible, the nonprofit must be at high risk for an international terrorist attack and must be located in one of the designated urban areas throughout the country.

The 39 Jewish organizations that received funding from the New York City area are the Bay Terrace Jewish Center, Bnos Square of Williamsburg, Bnos Zion of Bobov, Boro Park Hatzolah, Chabad Israel Center of the Upper East Side, Chabad Lubavitch of Brooklyn Heights, Chabad of Great  Neck, East Meadow Jewish Center, Greater Five Towns YM & YWHA-DBA-JCC, Hatzolah of Williamsburg, Hebrew Academy of the Five Towns and Rockaway, Jewish Community Council of Greater Coney Island, Jewish Foundation School of Staten Island, Jewish Institute of Queens, Lincoln Square Synagogue, Magen David Yeshivah, Manetto Hill Jewish Center, Mayon Chai, North Shore Hebrew Academy, Old Westbury Hebrew Congregation, Park East Synagogue, Rabbi Arthur Schneier Park East Day School, Ramaz School, Shulamith School for Girls of Brooklyn, Sid Jacobson Jewish Community Center, Talmud Torah D’Nitra, Temple Israel of Great Neck, Temple Israel of Northern Westchester, The Bialystoker Synagogue, The Center for Jewish Life, United Talmudical Academy, Yeshiva Beth Hillel of Williamsburg, Yeshiva of Brooklyn, Yeshiva Tifereth Moshe, Yeshiva of Flatbush, Young Israel of Flatbush, Young Israel of Midwood, Young Israel of Woodmere and Young Mens and Young Womens Hebrew Association of Bronx.

Nonprofit Security Grant Program 2013 statistics

Posted on August 29, 2013

The US Department of Homeland Security announced the winners of the 2013 NSGP and New York did better than ever.

This year, New York State awardees will have to do additional paperwork and we realize that  the requirements may be inappropriate for some of the grantees. JCRC reached out to Gov. Cuomo’s office to request alternatives. Stay tuned. Meanwhile, if you have any questions about prequalification, please go to the Grants Reform website at http://www.grantsreform.ny.gov/ or contact Valerie Bloomer at (518) 242-5099 or via email at vbloomer@dhses.ny.gov.

Thanks to NY DHSES Commissioner Jerome M. Hauer, Shelley Wahrlich and Valerie Bloomer for making this critical program work in New York.

Thanks to NY DHSES Commissioner Jerome M. Hauer, Shelley Wahrlich and Valerie Bloomer for making this critical program work so well in New York.