Award Competition for Hollings Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) Centers in the States of Arizona and Maryland with District of Columbia

National Institute of Standards and Technology

30 October 2022
United States of America
Research, Development and Innovation

The NIST Hollings Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP), authorized by 15 U.S.C. § 278k, is seeking applications from eligible applicants to enter into cooperative agreements to operate MEP Centers in the States of Arizona and Maryland with the District of Columbia. These MEP Centers will provide manufacturing extension services to small and medium-sized manufacturers (SMMs) in the States outlined above. These new MEP Centers will become part of the MEP National Network™ 1, which consists of 51 MEP Centers2 located in each State and in Puerto Rico, and over 1,400 trusted advisors and experts at approximately 450 MEP service locations. By statute, when an MEP Center has operated for a period of 10 consecutive years, a competition must be conducted to select an eligible entity to operate the Center. The MEP Centers in the States of Arizona and Maryland are each nearing 10 consecutive years of operation. See Section I. of this NOFO for additional information regarding the MEP Center program.


Per 15 U.S.C. § 278k(a)(5), eligibility is limited to United States-based nonprofit institutions, or consortium thereof, institutions of higher education, or State, United States territory, local, or tribal governments. As discussed in Section I.3. of this NOFO, NIST generally will not fund applications that propose an organizational or operational structure that, in whole or in part, delegates or transfers to another person, institution, or organization the applicant’s responsibility for core MEP Center management and Oversight functions. In addition, the applicant must have or propose an Oversight Board or Advisory Committee structure or plan for establishing a board structure within 90 days from the award start date (Refer to Section I.2. of this NOFO). Per 15 U.S.C. § 278k(h)(2), incumbent MEP Centers that have received financial assistance for ten (10) consecutive years and that the Secretary determines are in good standing are eligible to apply under this NOFO. See Section III.1. of this NOFO for additional information regarding the eligibility requirements for the MEP Center program.

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19 April 2023