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National Criminal History Improvement Program Announcement

Application Checklist

All applications must be electronically submitted through the Office of Justice Programs' Grants Management System (GMS), which can be accessed at Please use this checklist to make sure your application is complete. Your GMS application must include:

Online Forms

_____ Application for Federal Assistance (SF 424). The SF 424 is a standard form used by most Federal agencies. It contains 18 items that are to be completed online in the Overview, Application Information, and Project Information sections of the OJP GMS.

_____ Assurances and Certificates. Applicants are required to review, accept, and "sign off" on these assurances and certifications electronically through GMS. Please verify that the name, address, phone number, fax number, and e-mail address of the authorizing official on these online forms are correct.

Assurances. The applicant must comply with assurances in order to receive Federal funds under this program. It is the responsibility of the recipient of Federal funds to fully understand and comply with these requirements. Failure to comply may result in withholding of funds, termination of the award, or other sanctions.

Certifications Regarding Lobbying: Debarment, Suspension, and Other Responsibility Matters; and the Drug-Free Workplace Requirement. Applicants are required to review and check off the box on the certification form included in their online application process. This form commits the applicant to compliance with the certification requirements under 28 CFR Part 69, "New Restrictions on Lobbying," and 28 CFR Part 67, "A Government-Wide Debarment and Suspension (Nonprocurement) and Government-Wide Requirements for Drug-Free Workplace (Grants)."


_____ Attachment #1: Budget Detail Worksheet and Budget Narrative

The Budget Detailed Worksheet may be found through the Internet at ,OJP Standard Forms & Instructions. The OJP Financial Guide, which governs the administration of funds, contains information on allowable costs, methods of payment, audit requirements, accounting systems, and financial records, is available on the OJP website at h If you have any questions, please contact the Office of the Comptroller's Customer Service Center at 1-800-458-0786.

____ Budget Detail Worksheet. The budget should provide details for expenses in required categories (including match) and by individual task. A summary should be included with the 20% match clearly indicated as non-Federal match. The application should identify those agencies to receive direct funding and indicate the fiscal arrangements to accomplish fund transfer. Applicants seeking supplemental funds in connection with protection order initiatives must also include additional documentation showing that State or local funding does not already cover these operations.

____ Budget Narrative. The budget narrative should detail costs included in each budget category for the Federal and the non-Federal (in kind and cash) share. The purpose of the budget narrative is to relate items budgeted to project activities and to provide justification and explanation for budget items, including criteria and data used to arrive at the estimates for each budget category. The budget narrative should also indicate amounts to be made available to subrecipient agencies (under Contractual/Contracts category) other than the direct award recipient.

_____ Attachment #2: Program Narrative

The program narrative must include the following three (3) sections.

____ Section 1: Background and identification of needs

Accomplishments. Applicants must provide a detailed summary of the accomplishments achieved with funding under NCHIP. This section should describe, in quantifiable terms if possible, results achieved and advances made since the inception of NCHIP. Specifically address accomplishments relating to participation in each of the national databases and initiatives (i.e. III, NICS, NCIC Protection Order File, National Sex Offender Registry, IAFIS, mental health records, and livescan/AFIS capability). Where relevant, reference should be made to surveys and data quality audits. Reference must be made to the State's Records Quality Index (RQI).

Current status of program goals. This section should include a short update of current efforts relating to improvement of criminal history records, protection order data, or sex offender registries (including efforts supported under OJP and other Federal or State funded programs) and should discuss any evaluative efforts undertaken to identify the key areas of weakness in the State's criminal record system since submission of previous NCHIP applications. The applicant should specifically describe the status of State participation in the NICS, the III, the National Sex Offender Registry, and the NCIC Protection Order File. Please address each of the following six (6) subject areas in your application and include current number of records in each system, where applicable.

___ 1. Interstate Identification Index (III). States that are not members of III at the time of application must identify the tasks remaining to permit III participation and indicate whether available funding is adequate and the planned month and year of participation in III. If available funding is not adequate, the State is expected to apply for NCHIP funding that will permit the State to participate in III.

___ 2. Mental health records availability. States should indicate whether their mental health records are checked, either by the State POC or the FBI, during a NICS check. Where mental health records are accessible, please include the number of records currently available and any plans to improve availability. If mental health records are not currently accessible at the time of a background check, please describe factors which limit or prohibit exchange of mental health records.

___ 3.Protection order files. States should indicate whether they submit information for inclusion in the FBI's NCIC Protection Order file. States that submit protection orders should indicate the number of active protection orders provided to the FBI. States that do not submit protection orders should describe the prohibiting factors and any plans to overcome them.

___ 4. Sex offender registry. State applications should discuss the extent to which the State provides information to the FBI's NCIC Sex Offender Registry.

___ 5. Denied persons file. State applications should discuss the extent to which the State provides information to the FBI's Denied Persons File in the NICS Index. States that do not submit information to this file should describe the prohibiting factors and any plans to overcome them.

___ 6. NICS inquiries. The application must also discuss the extent to which dispositions requested in connection with a NICS inquiry have not been provided within the required time frame, and must identify any problems that are delaying instant responses to NICS inquiries and identify proposed solutions to these problems. Particular attention should be directed at needs of courts in connection with capture of disposition data.

____ Section 2: Description of tasks to be funded under NCHIP

Describe the activities to be conducted with NCHIP funds over the project period and specifically address each of the priority areas (identified under Program priorities). Dollar amounts must be included for each funded task. Also, this section should specifically address each of the following three (3) issues:

___ 1. Courts. In recognition of the importance of court reporting to the development of complete and accurate criminal records, all applications must describe tasks and indicate the level of funds that will be made directly available to the courts. Where no funds are provided for court-directed disposition reporting activities, a certification by the appropriate State court official declining participation must be included with this section.

___ 2. Unexpended funds. The application should describe the specific reasons that previously awarded NCHIP funds remain unexpended.

___ 3. Compatibility with other systems. The application should describe the extent to which proposed activities are compatible with NIBRS, NCIC 2000, NICS, IAFIS, and other applicable statewide or regional criminal justice information sharing standards or plans, including State anti-terrorism plans.

____ Section 3: Coordination

The administering NCHIP agency should coordinate efforts with relevant emergency management task forces and agencies to ensure that records development activities are compatible with security measures for preventing acts of terrorism. To encourage coordination and information sharing among criminal justice systems, all OJP awards supporting information technology development are being special conditioned to require that a description of the project be submitted to the State Information Technology Point of Contact (POC), if one has been designated. The name and address of the State POC can be obtained at the OJP Executive Council webpage A copy of the correspondence should be submitted as part of Attachment #3.

_____ Attachment #3: Other Required Documentation

The following required documentation should be submitted as file attachments:

___ 1. letter of support/commitment from the courts (if no funds are going to the courts);

___ 2. statement/memo indicating that funds are going to the courts (including amount of funds);

___ 3. letter to the State Information Technology POC describing the current application request, as referenced above;

___ 4. as required by CITA, the authorizing legislation for the NCHIP program, a statement certifying that: (1) the State is either currently participating in the Interstate Identification Index (III) or actively working toward such membership; and (2) has initiated, or will initiate, a comprehensive strategy for statewide information sharing which emphasizes the integration of all criminal justice system components, including law enforcement, courts, prosecution, corrections, and probation and parole;

___ 5. NCHIP funds may be supplemented for a State that certifies that it has or intends to establish a program that enters into the NCIC (a) warrants for the arrest of persons violating protection orders intended to protect victims from stalking or domestic violence; (b) arrests or convictions of persons violating protection orders or charged with domestic violence; and (c) protection orders for the protection of persons from stalking or domestic violence. The Program Narrative must include documentation showing the need for grant funds and that State or local funding does not already cover these operations; intended use of supplemental grant funds including a plan of action to increase record input; and an estimate of expected results from the use of the funds; and

___ 6. a 1-year project timeline outlining each activity, completion time, and responsible party.

Please refer to corresponding sections in the Program Announcement to determine specific content of each of these sections.

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