Section 6 Grants

Request for Proposals
Traditional Section 6 Proposal Submittal Guidelines
November 2021

Project Scope

Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) announces a Request for Proposals (RFP) for state fiscal year 2022 under the "Traditional" Section 6 research program. Funds for these Federal Assistance grants are provided by Cooperative Endangered Species Conservation Fund authorized by Section 6 of the Endangered Species Act and are administered cooperatively between TPWD and the Endangered Species Program of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS).

Statement of Work

TPWD has identified the following areas as the highest priority needs at the current time and proposals that do not address these topics will not be considered. Prior to submittal, it is suggested that investigators contact the taxa-specific biologist to discuss and refine potential proposals.

  1. Investigate the reproductive biology of the federally listed Texas prairie dawn (Hymenoxys texana). The project should include but is not limited to the following: determine the phenology (at the population level) and breeding system and document effective pollinators and seed dispersal mechanisms. In addition, from the results of the project and any other existing data on the species, an evidence-based rationale should be given for how that species’ populations can be delineated. Federal funding limit: $120,000.
  2. Identify important wintering habitat for Whooping Cranes using non-traditional inland habitat by both the Aransas-Wood Buffalo population and individuals that have strayed into Texas from the Louisiana experimental population. This study would occur within the Coastal Prairies & Marshes ecoregion and involve inland sites (i.e., non-coastal marsh) frequented by cranes and include data from radio-telemetered cranes from Louisiana's experimental population which spend months of the year in Texas. Federal funding limit: $125,000.
  3. Investigate the reproductive biology of the federally listed Tamaulipan kidneypetal (Ayenia limitaris). The project should include but is not limited to the following: determine the breeding system, document effective pollinators, estimate effective pollinator forage range and determine the viable seed production in wild populations. In addition, from the results of the project and any other existing data on the species, an evidence-based rationale should be given for how that species’ populations can be delineated. Federal funding limit: $120,00.


Eligibility of Prospective Applicants

TPWD will only issue contracts to the following entities:

  1. Institutions of Higher Education, such as colleges or universities (private or public; see "Higher Education Coordinating Act of 1965" Sec. 61.003).
  2. Non-profit organizations [501c(3)].
  3. Federal (except Dept Interior), State, Local (County, City) offices, (see "Professional Services Procurement Act" Sec. 2254.002).

TPWD will no longer issue contracts directly to consultants or consulting agencies (see State of Texas "Professional Services Procurement Act" Sec. 2254.021).

It is imperative that the applicant agency/institution possess thorough knowledge of State of Texas purchasing rules and Federal regulations (e.g., 2 CFR 200), and have the administrative expertise and infrastructure to be able to manage federally-funded state contracts.

Matching Requirements and Funding Limitations

Traditional Section grant funding 6 is a cost-share program that requires a non-federal match to the funding that is awarded. The current cost-ratio for Section 6 is 75:25 meaning that all grants require non-federal matching funds that are equal to 25% of the grant’s total cost. Funds will be made available to the grantee on a reimbursement basis.

All funding recipients under this Request for Proposals will be required to provide the non-federal matching funds for their grant (25%SAE of the grant’s total cost). Sources of matching funds can include, but are not limited to, cash match of state or private dollars, in-kind services, the contribution of a portion of the recipient’s indirect costs, or the contribution of a portion of the salary of the Principal Investigator(s) (PI). No federal funds, including funds from other federal grant programs, can be used as matching funds for the Section 6 program. The 25% match requirement must be met cumulatively each year.

Proposal Format and Proposal Preparation Guidance

All proposals submitted in response to this RFP must be written in the format described in Appendices I and II. Proposals should contain a thorough description of the activities to be performed and the data that will be collected and provided with the project’s Interim Performance Reports and Final Report. Prior to submittal, we suggest that investigators contact the taxa-specific Nongame and Rare Species Program biologist to discuss and refine potential proposals.

Proposals must be submitted in electronic format (e.g., Word), and budgets must be submitted on the provided Excel template. Complete proposals, not including the itemized budget, are limited in length to ten single-spaced, 8-1/2 x 11-inch pages, using 11-point font or greater with one-inch margins. Proposals exceeding this length will not be considered. The project title in the separate Excel budget form should match exactly the narrative (text) title for the project. The proposal may include up to six additional pages for needed attachments and/or appendices that may present data tables, graphs or maps that support the proposal’s narrative section. Additionally, the proposal must be accompanied by a brief biographic summary for each Principal Investigator (PI) working on the project. The biographic summary should be a brief description (not more than one page) of each applicant’s experience and knowledge as it relates to the activities included in the proposal and is not expected to be a complete resume. (The biographic information does not count against the ten-page proposal maximum size limit.) Total electronic file size for all materials submitted should not exceed 25 MB. We will send an email within 2 business days confirming receipt of your application. Application materials will not be returned following evaluations and awards.

Compliance with Federal and State Law

The Section 6 program is funded through Cooperative Species Conservation Fund. Because the program’s funds are federal dollars, all activities funded through the program must be in compliance with all federal laws.

Successful grant recipients will be considered sub-recipients of TPWD and will be required to comply with applicable federal and state laws and regulations including the provisions of the National Environmental Policy Act and the Endangered Species Act. If handling endangered species, the PI will be required to provide his or her federal scientific collecting permit number or indicate if the PI will obtain a federal scientific collecting permit before contract approval. Additionally, the grant recipient is required to obtain a state scientific collector's permit if any non-threatened or endangered species will be captured, held in possession temporarily, or collected as part of the project.

Projects that involve construction or soil-disturbing activities must be prepared to address their potential effect on archaeological and cultural resources as well as historic preservation. Projects that involve the capture or collection of any vertebrate species may require Animal Welfare compliance (e.g., Laboratory Animal Welfare Act of 1966 and Health Research Extension Act of 1985).

As a condition of accepting federal funds through the Section 6 program, grant recipients must agree to adhere to all Federal Assistance compliance requirements including a thorough written assessment of the project’s Environmental Compliance in Section P of the and the timely submission of financial and project performance reports. The recipient’s organization must have a system to track and document all expenses claimed toward the grant.

Any work to be performed on private lands in Texas using these funds requires, as a matter of state statute (TPW 12.103) and TPWD policy grantees to secure written permission from the private landowner(s) for the purposes of (1) access to the land, and (2) use of data collected on that land. If your project will include reporting results from specifically identified private lands, written permission from applicable private landowners will be required to be provided to TPWD before the contract can be approved. Complete and attach form PWD 0153a Landowner Permission for Wildlife Research including landowner(s) signature and date to this application packet to verify that they have read, understood, and agreed to your proposal, will grant access to their land to specified individuals, and will grant permission to use data obtained from the project for scientific and/or environmental consultation purposes (e.g., reports, maps, databases). Or, if the project has not specifically identified private lands at the time of proposal submission, a form PWD 0153a Landowner Permission for Wildlife Research must be provided later before contract approval. If such action becomes necessary after the contract has been signed, then documentation, as specified above, will be required before work can begin on identified private lands study sites. Copies of all completed and signed PWD 0153a Landowner Permission for Wildlife Research forms must be provided to the contract manager no later than the deadline specified in the contract for the final report.

Performance Reporting Requirements

All successful applicants will be required to provide annual reports of their project’s activities to satisfy federal project monitoring requirements.

An Interim Report will be due to TPWD within 30 days of the annual reporting period end date of the grant as listed in the contract. A Final Report will be due to TPWD within 30 days of the completion of the grant. Interim and Final reports are critically important and must be submitted on time in order to process grant invoices. If reports contain confidential data, the PI must provide an additional redacted version to TPWD. Invoice payments may be delayed because of untimely or deficient report submissions and invoices may be returned. Each Interim Report and the Final Report must be provided in Microsoft Word format using the template provided; reports submitted in any other format will be rejected. PIs are encouraged to submit digital images/photos with their reports that depict various aspects of their project including procedures employed in the field, their study site, and the species involved in the project. Performance reports must contain a comparison of the actual accomplishments during that grant segment with the objectives of the grant as written in the proposal/scope of work. If applicable, an explanation must be provided describing why the objectives were not met and any other pertinent information relevant to the project results

Duration of Grants

Proposals will be considered for projects that cover one, two, or three year periods. For this cycle we will accept proposals that have a starting date of November 1, 2022, or January 1, 2023.

Budget Preparation

The necessary funding for the entire project should be included in the proposal. The budget should be prepared as a series of state fiscal year budgets (Sept 1 – Aug 31) for each year or partial year of the project using the provided TPWD budget template. The budget also should identify the source(s) of the non-federal matching funds that will be provided by the grant recipient. The budget shall be prepared by the institution’s fiscal, budget, or grant staff, and signed by this individual. Once the contract is developed between TPWD and the grant recipient’s institution, TPWD will reimburse the grant recipient for up to 75.00% of its approved invoiced costs. Please submit both an Excel version and a signed PDF version of the budget completed using the provided Excel template; the budget/budget narrative should not be included in the text body of your proposal.

A detailed, itemized budget should be prepared using the budget template provided that describes how the project’s funding will be used/allocated. The budget should be prepared as a series of annual budgets that follow the state fiscal year (e.g. Sept 1 through Aug 31). Funds not spent in a fiscal year may roll to the following year within the contract grant period. Any request to roll funds will require a budget amendment.

The budget also should identify the source(s) of the 25% non-federal matching funds that will be provided by the grant recipient. Please note that for multi-year proposals, the budget for the total project must have at least 25% non-federal match.

The itemized budget must include estimated costs (rounded to the nearest whole dollar) for salary and wages, fringe benefits, travel costs (tips or gratuities and purchase of alcohol are not reimbursable expenses), supplies, miscellaneous, and indirect costs. Also include contractual services if applicable to the project. Modified Total Direct cost (MTDC) must be calculated on the provided budget template, to which indirect costs should be applied. MTDC excludes equipment, capital expenditures, charges for patient care, rental costs, tuition remission (stipend), scholarships and fellowships, participant support costs, and the portion of each sub-award and subcontract in excess of $25,000. Please note that if you intend to subcontract/sub-award work that exceeds $25,000 in total, only the first $25,000 of that subcontract/sub-award amount may be included in the MTDC for the overall project budget. Therefore, only up to $25,000 for a subcontract/sub-award can be included when calculating MTDC over the entire life of the project. An example budget table and an example budget narrative are provided in Appendix II.

Pre-Award Meeting

Successful grant applicants and their relevant fiscal staff shall participate in a pre-award meeting with relevant TPWD program, Texas Natural Diversity Database staff and Federal Assistance staff to discuss reporting requirements, data formatting and submission, as well as financial aspects of the grant process.

Proposal Submission Deadline and Contact

The deadline for the submission of proposals is the close of business (4:30 p.m.) on Thursday, January 4, 2022.

Applicants must submit an electronic copy (Microsoft Word/Excel files) of their proposal in the format described in the attachment to TPWD by this deadline. Email proposals to

Proposals that are received after this date and time will not be considered for selection.

Questions regarding the content of this RFP may be directed to the appropriate taxa-specific Nongame and Rare Species Program biologist or to Chelsea Acres, Rare and Listed Species Grant Coordinator, at or (512) 389-4933.

Approximate Timeline:

  • Late November 2021 — Request for Proposals issued.
  • January 4, 2022 — Proposals due to TPWD by COB (4:30pm). Copies will be made of all proposals, and these will be distributed to the internal review committee.
  • Mid-January 2022 — Section 6 Review Committee meets to assess and rank proposals. Successful grant applicants will be notified, and a TPWD biologist will be assigned to the project. The TPWD lead biologist, or Project Coordinator, will work with TPWD's Federal Aid office to guide the proposal through the process of becoming a federal grant (i.e. creation of the grant's project statement using the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's online system, creation of required environmental compliance documentations, etc.).
  • Mid-February 2022 — Final proposals and budgets submitted to Rare and Listed Species Grant Coordinator. The project is subject to final approval by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Once the federal award is received, TPWD will enter into a contractual agreement with the sub-recipient and ultimately issue a purchase order to fund the project.

Other Considerations

At all times, grantees shall be considered cooperators or independent contractors and not agents or representatives of the TPWD.

Grantees shall be subject to potential audit by the Texas State Auditor’s Office and the U.S. Department of the Interior. Because of the origin of this funding, grantees will be considered to be sub-recipients of both TPWD and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

TPWD reserves the right to terminate a cooperative agreement for failure to perform obligations under the contract.

TPWD reserves the right not to select a proposal due to funding limitations, insufficient proposal quality, or any other factors deemed appropriate.

Appendix I: Proposal Narrative

Each proposal must follow this format and must include all sections below to be considered.

Appendix II: Example Budget and Budget Justification