What Nevada Wants in a Grant Management System
Overwhelmingly, Nevadans said they wanted a wholistic system that met the needs and wants of the entire grants process. The system has to:
- Be easy for grant recipients
- Simplify the grants management process for prime awardees and pass-through entities
- Provide clear data collection for continual evaluation and improvement
Potential grant recipients (primarily our stakeholders) would be able to use the grant management system to search/apply for grants and report on grants. Our stakeholders include:
- State agencies
- County governments
- Local governments
- Tribes & tribal governments
The prime awardee (main recipient or pass through entity) would be able to manage subrecipients through a portal and review grant proposals for state-level solicitations.
The system would enable state data collection, analysis, and reporting on successful applications, grant dollars received, missed funding opportunities, as well as data on awards, subrecipients, and grant matching.
Centralized Grant Management System
OFA staff began the work of implementing a Centralized Grant Management System. Per NRS 223.478, from language contained in AB445 (2021), the department is to acquire and implement a Centralized Grant Management System. Prior to starting the process of procuring the software for grant management system, the department requested input from our stakeholders who would be utilizing the system.
From March 2022 to June 2022, the Office of Federal Assistance conducted a Nevada Centralized Grant Management Needs Assessment, using TriMetrix consulting services. TriMetrix employed an assessment survey and held stakeholder interviews to create an thorough review of state agencies current grant management processes, needs, and concerns.
Using the gathered information from stakeholders and the Nevada Centralized Grant Management Needs Assessment, the department began working with State Purchasing. Together we identified a software provider whose grant management system meets our needs within the allotted budget and limited timeline.
OFA selected current State web-based grant management software IGX Solutions Corporation. The funds for the the program were received this biennium. The proposal is now at the Governor's Office for final approval. Once approved, the Governor's Office of Federal Assistance (OFA) will begin implementation.
Assembly Bill 445 from the 2021 legislative session appropriated funds for the planning and operation of a grant management system. The Office of Federal Assistance will seek a grant management system that will be used by grant seekers and recipients to manage state and federal grant awards. The system is expected to increase the amount of federal grant funding in Nevada, create administrative efficiency, and enable data collection and analysis. The Office of Federal Assistance will seek an enterprise grant management system that will be used by grant seekers and recipients to manage state and federal grant awards. The system is expected to increase the amount of federal grant funding in Nevada, create administrative efficiency, and enable data collection and analysis.
Historically, Nevada has been among the lowest-ranked states for federal grants received per capita. Nevada state agencies continue to report a lack of grant application capacity and other barriers to accessing or increasing grant dollars for their organizations.
In 2016 and 2018, the Nevada Advisory Council on Federal Assistance recommended to the Governor and Nevada legislators that the state implement a grant management system. As a result, during the 2017 and 2019 legislative sessions, the Nevada legislature appropriated funds to purchase and implement such a system, with a 2019 appropriation of $200,000 each of the two years over the next biennium.
Between 2017 and 2019, the Grant Office went through three separate RFP processes to contract with a vendor for the enterprise grant management system. None of the three RFP processes resulted in an executed contract and, during the third RFP, the Grant Office did not receive even one bid that met state requirements. The bottom line is that vendors just could not provide an enterprise system with full functionality for the allotted budget.
Despite these frustrating setbacks, the Grant Office recognized the need for implementing a system to serve grant seekers and recipients throughout Nevada and, in February 2020, initiated both a technology needs assessment and a request for information solicitation to gather information for the budgeting process and a future RFP. However, due to the unanticipated impact of the COVID-19 public health crisis and its impact to the state budget, these activities have been put on hold.
However, during the 2021 legislative session, Assembly Bill 445 was passed and included appropriations for a grant management system to collect and analyze grant data.
The Office of Federal Assistance utilized allotted funding in fiscal year 2022 (July 2021-June 2022) to conduct a needs assessment for a grant management system. The new system will be procured, funded for and administered by the Office of Federal Assistance.
The grant management system is expected to: increase access to federal grant dollars for state, county, and local governments and non-profits; increase efficiency for organizations in applying for and managing grants; and allow the state to collect and analyze grant data.
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- 2016 & 2018 – Nevada Advisory Council on Federal Assistance recommends Nevada implement a grant management system
- 2017 – Legislature appropriates funds for grant management system
- 2017 – Nevada Grant Office issues RFP and awards contract, which is appealed by unsuccessful bidder; appeal process lasts until May 2019, freezing all progress
- 2019 – Legislature appropriates $200,000 each year of the two years of the next biennium for implementation of grant management system
- July 2019 – Following appeal process, Grant Office issues second RFP; the vendor who appealed the 2017 RFP notifies the Grant Office that they will not bid because they cannot provide the system within the budget allotted by the state
- October 2019 – Grant Office cancels RFP to update requirements
- November 2019 – Grant Office issues third RFP with updated requirements; the vendor originally awarded the contract in 2017 notifies the Grant Office that they will not bid on this proposal because they cannot provide the system within the budget allotted by the state
- January 2020 – At end of bid period, Grant Office receives no bids meeting state requirements, pauses pursuit of bids until adequate funding can be obtained
- February 2020 – A request for information (RFI) was issued to inform the state's budget process and any future RFP
- April 2020 – The Grant Office canceled the RFI in April 2020 because of unforeseen budgetary impacts due to the COVID-19 public health crisis
- May 2021- Assembly Bill 445 passes the 2021 legislature and appropriates funding to plan for and procure a grant management system