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Great Lakes AOCs

Applying for Great Lakes Legacy Act Funding

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In order to receive funding under the Great Lakes Legacy Act, projects must be located in one of the 27 remaining U.S. Great Lakes Areas of Concern. In selecting projects to carry out, the Legacy Act specifically directs the EPA Administrator to give priority to projects that:

  • Clean up contaminated sediment.
  • Have been identified in a Remedial Action Plan and are ready to be implemented.
  • Use an innovative approach, technology or technique that may provide greater environmental benefits or equivalent environmental benefits at a reduced cost.
  • Start cleanup no later than one year after the date of receiving funds for the project.

Request for Projects

Project descriptions must be typewritten, double-spaced in 12-point or larger print using 8.5 x 11 inch paper with minimum 1-inch horizontal and vertical margins. Pages must be numbered in order, starting with the cover page and continuing through the appendices. One electronic version of the project description and attachments is required. If the project description contains confidential business information, it must be clearly labelled as confidential business information. All project descriptions should include:

Project Manager Information: Provide the name, position, mailing address, phone number, email address, agency affiliation, and other pertinent contact information for the principal project manager.

Executive Summary - The Executive Summary should be a stand-alone document, not to exceed one page. It should contain the specifics of what is proposed and what the non-federal sponsor expects to accomplish regarding measuring or movement toward achieving project goals. This summary should identify the measurable environmental results expected, including potential human health benefits, ecological benefits, and expected benefit to the AOC (e.g., how does this project move toward delisting of beneficial use impairments). The document should also list the proposed cost and non-federal cost share. The Executive Summary of a project proposal that passes the Stage 1 review may be posted on GLNPO’s website, so it should not contain any confidential business information.

Table of Contents - Self-explanatory

Project Description Narrative - Includes Parts I - IX listed below and not to exceed 15 pages.

Part I - Project Title - Self-explanatory

Part II - Objectives - A numbered list (1, 2, … ) of concisely written project objectives. In most cases, each project objective can be stated in a single sentence.

Part III - Justification - Discuss the current conditions at the site in relation to chemical concentrations in the environment, fish contaminant levels, routes of exposure and bioavailability of contaminants. Then, for each objective listed in Part II above, discuss the potential outcome in terms of environmental restoration, human health and/or source control. This section should be numbered with a justification corresponding to each objective.

Part IV - Approach and Methods - Describe in detail how the project will be carried out, including a schedule of project milestones. Describe how the system or approach will support the project goals.

For remediation projects - Please address all of the evaluation criteria listed in the Project Evaluation Criteria section of this RFP. All supporting documentation for the evaluation criteria should be submitted along with the project description (e.g., Remedial Investigation and Feasibility Study, Remedial Alternative Evaluation, Risk Analyses, etc.). Also, please identify any plans for ecological restoration at the site in conjunction with remediation.

Part V - Impact Assessment - State how the project’s success will be evaluated in terms of measurable environmental results, including benefit to the overall AOC, and its potential contribution to AOC delisting.

Part VI - Stakeholder Involvement - List the stakeholders involved in the development of the project, including a description of the planned role of each stakeholder group as the project proceeds. Also, provide documentation of stakeholder involvement and support of the project.

Part VII - Timeline - A timeline of important milestones for the project should be listed.

Part VIII - Budget - A budget should be provided with a justification for project costs. The source and documentation of the non-federal share of the project funding and 100 percent of the operation and maintenance costs should be specifically identified.

Part IX - Area of Concern (AOC) Documentation - Documentation should be provided indicating the proposed project lies directly within one of the 27 remaining U.S. AOCs. An AOC's Remedial Action Plan should be used in documenting if a project lies within the specified AOC (attach a map of the AOC indicating the location of the project site, if available). The Remedial Action Plan should also be provided as documentation if the proposed project is identified in the RAP as a priority project.

The Remedial Action Plan should also be provided as documentation if the proposed project is identified in the RAP as a priority project.

Project Description Appendices - All appendices to the project description package (e.g., RI/FS, remedial alternatives evaluation, risk analyses, documentation of stakeholder support, etc.) should be included with the project description.

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Quality System Documentation

Projects involving use of existing environmental data or data collection require approved Quality System Documentation (e.g., a Quality Assurance Project Plan) prior to commencing environmental data collection. In addition, the non-federal sponsor will be responsible for meeting all applicable health and safety requirements plus all other applicable conditions. Project budgets should reflect any additional costs and/or time needed to meet these requirements.

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Project Evaluation Criteria

All projects must meet all of the following required components to be eligible for Legacy Act funding. Those projects that meet the minimum requirements will be evaluated based on how well they meet the priority components, and all supporting documentation submitted by the applicant will be used to assist in the evaluation of the project. Remediation projects will be evaluated in accordance with the ®Rule. The ®Rule outlines EPA's process for identification, evaluation, selection, and implementation of projects for funding under the Great Lakes Legacy Act.



Required Components

  • Project falls within one of the 27 remaining U.S. AOCs.
  • A minimum of 35 percent non-federal match available, identified and committed to the project.
  • 100 percent of operation and maintenance costs available, identified and committed to the project.
  • Site will not suffer significant further or renewed contamination from existing pollution sources causing sediment contamination following completion of project.
  • Site assessment complete.
  • Remedial alternatives evaluation (e.g., dredging, capping, no action, monitored natural recovery, in-situ/ex-situ treatment, combination of alternatives) complete or being addressed.
  • Short-term/long-term effects analysis on remedial alternatives complete or being addressed.

Priority Components

  • Remedial design work complete or being addressed.
  • Projects to begin no later than one year after date of receiving funds.
  • Project identified in the Remedial Action Plan.
  • Documented coordination with and acceptance of project by stakeholders.
  • Information available on existing risk to human health and the environment (e.g., fish contaminant levels, chemical concentrations in environment, exposure routes, bioavailability of contaminants).
  • Ability to demonstrate risk reduction.
  • Ability to leverage funds from non-governmental sources.
  • Demonstration of innovative sediment treatment technologies and innovative sediment assessment techniques.
  • Coordination with regulatory agencies if necessary.
  • Experience and ability to properly perform the proposed work, if applicable.
  • Probability of success.
  • Reasonableness of project costs.
  • Soundness of approach, including scientific viability of the project.
  • Well-defined remedial boundaries.
  • Addresses habitat mitigation.
  • Addresses restoration of beneficial use impairments.

On-the-ground remediation projects will be evaluated and scored according to the “Great Lakes Legacy Act, Evaluation Form for Sediment Remediation Proposals” (“Stage 1: ‘Minimum Requirements Check’” and “Stage 2: ‘Strength of Proposal’”) and “Great Lakes Legacy Act Scoring Sheet” provided below.


(Monitor or evaluate contaminated sediment, prevent further or renewed contamination of sediment):

Required Components

  • Project falls within one of the 27 remaining U.S. AOCs.
  • A minimum of 35 percent non-federal match available identified and committed to the project.
  • 100 percent of operation and maintenance costs available identified and committed to the project.

Priority Components

  • Sediment assessments to support the development of remedial alternatives pursuant to the Legacy Act.
  • Controlling existing sources of sediment contamination.
  • Conducting evaluations of remedial alternatives for sites moving toward remediation.
  • Conducting remedial design work for sites moving toward remediation.
  • Data collection to support a review of the short-term and long-term effects of remedial alternatives on human health and the environment.
  • Probability of success.
  • Reasonableness of project costs.
  • Soundness of approach, including scientific viability of the project.

Non-remediation projects will be evaluated according to the "Great Lakes Legacy Act, Evaluation Form for Non-Remediation Sediment Proposals" provided below.

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Project Description Submittal

Scott Cieniawski

Please note that EPA’s e-mail server does not accept “zip” files.

Packages that contain documents/files greater than 5MB should be provided on CD/DVD and mailed to:

Scott Cieniawski
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Great Lakes National Program Office (G-9J)
77 W. Jackson Blvd.
Chicago, IL 60604-3590

Evaluation Forms

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