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Privacy Act System of Records: Research Grant, Cooperative Agreement and Fellowship Application Files, EPA-36

[excerpted from: Federal Register: February 22, 2002 (Volume 67, Number 36)]

System Name: Research Grant, Cooperative Agreement, and Fellowship Application Files.

System Location: National Center for Environmental Research, Office of Research and Development, Environmental Protection Agency, Ariel Rios Building, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20460.

Categories of Individuals Covered by the System: Individuals (principal investigators and fellows) who request or have previously requested support from the ORD research grants programs, either individually or through an academic institution, state agency, or non-profit organization.

Categories of Records in the System: Names of the principal investigators, research proposals and their identifying numbers, supporting data from the academic institutions or other applicants, proposal evaluations from peer reviewers, review records, financial data, and other material related to evaluation of applications.

Authority for Maintenance of the System (includes any revisions or amendments): Federal Grant and Cooperative Agreement Act, 31 U.S.C.6301 et seq.; Clean Air Act, 42 U.S.C. 1857 et seq.; Federal Water Pollution Control Act, 33 U.S.C. 1254 et seq.; Public Health Service Act, 42 U.S.C. 241 et seq.; Solid Waste Disposal Act, 42 U.S.C. 6901 et seq.; Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act, 7 U.S.C. 136 et seq.; Safe Drinking Water Act, 42 U.S.C. 300j-1; Toxic Substances Control Act, 15 U.S.C. 2609, Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act, 42 U.S.C. 9660. Other laws may be relevant as well.

Purpose(s): To assist EPA in conducting and documenting the receipt and review of applications and award of research grants to the most meritorious applicants in response to solicitations issued by the Office of Research and Development in furtherance of its Science to Achieve Results (STAR) program.

Routine Uses of Records Maintained in the System, Including Categories of Users, and the Purposes of Such Uses: General routine uses A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, and K apply to this system. Records may also be disclosed:

  1. To qualified reviewers retained by EPA for their opinion and evaluation of applicants and their proposals as part of the application review process.
  2. To other Federal government agencies and private-sector organizations regarding applicants in order to coordinate joint grant programs between Federal agencies, State or local government agencies, and/or private-sector organizations.
  3. To the applicant institution to obtain data for use in reviewing applications, awarding grants, or administering grants.

Policies and Practices For Storing, Retrieving, Accessing, Retaining, and Disposing of Records in the System:

  • Storage: Electronic databases and hard copy files.

  • Retrievability: Electronic files may be retrieved by most data elements in the database (primarily by topic area and assistance number). Retrieval by name of principal investigator is reserved to the system manger.

  • Safeguards: Electronic records are maintained in a secure, password protected electronic system. Paper records are maintained in lockable file cabinets. All records are maintained in secure, access-controlled areas or buildings.

  • Retention and Disposal: Hard copies of awarded proposals are transferred to the Federal Records Center one year after closeout where they are retained for an additional six years. Hard copies of declined proposals are destroyed three years after they are declined.

System Manager(s) and Address: Director, Peer Review Division, National Center for Environmental Research, Office of Research and Development, Environmental Protection Agency, Environmental Protection Agency, Ariel Rios Building, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20460.

Notice Procedures: Any individual who wants to know whether this system of records contains a record about him or her, who wants access to his or her record, or who wants to contest the contents of a record, should make a written request to the System Manager.

Access Procedure: Requesters will be required to provide adequate identification, such as a driver's license, employee identification card, or other identifying document. Additional identification procedures may be required in some instances.

Contesting Procedure: Requests for correction or amendment must identify the record to be changed and the corrective action sought. Complete EPA Privacy Act procedures are set out in 40 CFR Part 16.

Record Source Categories: Academic institutions, principal investigators, other applicants, peer reviewers, and EPA and other Federal agency personnel.

Systems exempted from certain provisions of the act: Pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 552a(k)(5), this system is exempt from the following provisions of the Privacy Act, subject to the limitations set forth in that subsection: 5 U.S.C. 552a(c)(3) and (d).

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