Dispute process for determinations to not make awards based on Federal Awardee Performance and Integrity Information System (FAPIIS)
The following dispute process applies to applicants who have been denied an award due to a determination based on the conditions outlined in 2 CFR 200.206(a)(2).
After receiving notification of EPA’s determination that the applicant is not qualified for the award based on 2 CFR 200.206(a)(2) and will not be receiving an award, the applicant or their representative may file a written dispute electronically with the appropriate Dispute Decision Official (DDO) (designated under 2 CFR 1500.14(e) using the following guidelines, which will be referenced in the notification letter:
- The written dispute must be received electronically by the DDO within fifteen (15) calendar days of the notification date.
- The written dispute must include a detailed statement of the legal and/or factual basis for the dispute, the remedy that the applicant is seeking, information on how to communicate with the applicant or its representative (e.g., phone and fax numbers, email address), and any documentation relevant to the dispute.
- The DDO is only required to consider disputes challenging the accuracy of the facts that EPA used to determine that the applicant is not qualified for the award. The DDO has the discretion to determine whether to consider disputes based on grounds other than factual accuracy.
- Disputes about the Award Official’s judgment in interpreting accurate facts to determine an applicant is not qualified will be dismissed unless the applicant can demonstrate, to the satisfaction of the DDO, that the determination was arbitrary or capricious. In addition, the DDO may dismiss any dispute that is clearly untimely filed, raises issues that the DDO does not have the discretion to consider, or that fails to set forth a detailed statement of the legal and/or factual basis for the dispute.
If a dispute is filed, the DDO must consult with the Program Office, OGC/ORC, and Director of the National Policy Training and Compliance Division or designee, and then determine whether it is in the Agency’s best interest to delay the award process pending resolution of the dispute, particularly for disputes where the award is being made to a different applicant.
Unsuccessful applicants must be provided with reasonable access to agency records relevant to the dispute in a manner consistent with the standards contained in the Freedom of Information Act. EPA will not disclose materials exempt from disclosure under the Freedom of Information Act.
Upon receiving a dispute, the DDO will establish a process and schedule for resolving the dispute and communicate this to the applicant and affected Program Office. At his or her discretion, the DDO may
- request additional information from the applicant or Program Office and/or
- meet by phone or in person with the unsuccessful applicant and/or Program Office.
After reviewing all of the information relevant to the dispute, the DDO, with the concurrence of the OGC/ORC and Director of OGD or designee, will timely issue a final written decision regarding the dispute. The DDO’s decision will constitute final agency action and is not subject to further review within the Agency.