The National Marine Fisheries Service (hereinafter, "NMFS") recognizes the unique importance of marine mammals to Alaska Native Organizations (hereinafter, "ANOs") and values ongoing efforts by Alaska Native Tribes and ANOs to conserve and protect subsistence species under NMFS' jurisdiction. Pursuant to 16 U.S.C. §1388, NMFS may provide Federal assistance to ANOs to conserve marine mammals and to promote co-management of Alaska Native subsistence use of such mammals under NMFS' jurisdiction. This assistance, provided in the form of cooperative agreements, may be used to support conservation of marine mammals utilized for subsistence purposes by Alaska Natives. Funded activities may include development and implementation of species management, subsistence harvest monitoring, subsistence harvest sampling, scientific research, and public education and outreach. Proposed activities should address priority actions identified in an Endangered Species Act Recovery Plan or Marine Mammal Protection Act Conservation Plan where applicable and the priorities identified within this federal funding opportunity. Tribally-Authorized ANOs with a signed agreement for co-management with NMFS are eligible to apply under this solicitation. Proposals focusing on marine mammals under the jurisdiction of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will not be considered for funding under this grant program. This document describes how to prepare and submit proposals for funding in fiscal year (hereinafter, "FY") 2023 and how NMFS will determine which proposals will be funded. This announcement should be read in its entirety, as some information has changed from the previous year.
Eligible applicants are limited to Tribally-Authorized Alaska Native Organizations (ANOs) with an existing marine mammal agreement for co-management with NMFS. In a case where an ANO has authorized another entity to serve as the fiduciary agent of the organization a copy of the agreement between the ANO and fiduciary agent must be provided with the application. This agreement must outline a thorough description of the relationship and responsibilities of both parties. The ANO will be listed as the lead entity/organization on the application as reflected in the agreement. Any ANO not holding an existing agreement for co-management with NMFS may collaborate with and be listed on the application as a sub-recipient under an eligible applicant. The legal status of the ANO must be identified (see verification below) and a copy of the sub-recipient agreement between the ANO and sub-recipient must be provided with the application. This agreement must outline a thorough description of the relationship and responsibilities of both parties. Eligibility must be met at the time of application. Acceptable verification of ANO legal status: 1)Non-Profit – In cases where the ANO board is a registered non-profit, the following is acceptable: (a)Proof that the Internal Revenue Service currently recognizes the applicant or an organization to which contributions are tax deductible under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code; (b) A statement from a State taxing body or the State Attorney General certifying that: i. The organization is a nonprofit organization within the State; and ii. No part of its net earnings may lawfully benefit any private or shareholder or individual. (c)A certified copy of the applicant’s certificate of incorporation or similar document if it clearly establishes the non profit status of the applicant. 2) Tribal Government – In cases where a tribal government directly holds a co-management agreement with NOAA, a letter from an authorized tribal representative certifying this status is acceptable.