The Following are Frequently Asked Questions and Answers for award recipients of the Maine Seafood Dealer and Processors COVID-19 Response and Resilience Program (SDPP) funds.
How can I use my funds?
Each funding source (ARPA, NOAA, USDA) has a slightly different set of purposes. Your initial award notification indicated which funding you are receiving. In general, the funds must be used consistent with your application for proposed investments or reimbursements, and in support of the wholesale and/or processing portions of your business. Awardees may not use funds for retail or aquaculture investments or reimbursements.
If you are receiving ARPA funding, you may use the funds for the proposed investments in your wholesale or processing operations or to reimburse yourself for pandemic related expenses incurred after March 2021.
If you are receiving USDA funding, you may use the funds to reimburse yourself for the pandemic-related expenses incurred after March 2020.
If you are receiving NOAA funding you may use the funds for the proposed investments in your wholesale or processing operations, or to reimburse yourself for pandemic related expenses.
We ask that you please email us at email@example.com if you have any questions on what qualifies as an allowable use within your proposal.
I was awarded less than I asked for. How do I know which portion is funded?
Applicants can decide which portions of their proposal on which to spend funds. However, funds must be spent on items listed in the proposal, that fall within allowable expenses based on funding type (ARPA, USDA or NOAA) and apply to your wholesale or processing operations. We ask that you please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions on what qualifies as an allowable use within your proposal. Some applicants were awarded funds but also proposed a mix of allowable and non-allowable items.
Is there a timeframe for spending these funds?
While the funds don't necessarily expire, DMR expects that award recipients will initiate and complete the work proposed in your application as soon as is feasible, as long as the work is consistent with allowable uses of the program and of the particular funding source. If you anticipate any delays in beginning work, please contact us at email@example.com .
I want to use the funds for something I didnt identify in my application.
You must use your funds consistent with your proposed investments or reimbursements in your application. In some cases, if a change in circumstances warrant, we may be able to consider something new as a part of your proposal. Please contact Erica Maltz at firstname.lastname@example.org BEFORE spending any funds on projects not proposed in your application.
How did you let dealers and processors know this grant opportunity was occurring?
Earlier this year, we reached out to all businesses licensed as wholesale dealers or processors by the eligibility cutoff date of April 1, 2020 via text message and email to the contacts provided by each license holder. We also issued several press releases containing a link to subscribe to these alerts.
I met the eligibility criteria. Why wasn't I notified?
If you did not receive an email or text, one of several different problems may have occurred. We may not have your most up to date information in our licensing system. You may have provided us with a landline. The email may have been caught in your spam filter. You may also have previously unsubscribed from DMR updates. If you did not receive a notification and none of these apply to you, or if you want to change the contact information you have previously provided DMR, please contact email@example.com .
Are the award amounts public information?
Yes. During the application process all award recipients signed an attestation form. We specified in the form that award information (amount, business name, funding source) is public. Many other pieces of information collected during the application process remain confidential.
Why were some businesses awarded more than others?
DMR took into consideration several factors in determining award amounts. Through the application process, applicants were required to explain the impacts of the pandemic on their business and provide a plan to address those impacts. Applications were evaluated on the merits of the plan, including the degree to which the funds would be used for capital or operational expenses, and the potential to add new capacity and provide economic benefit to Maine. Number of employees and annual revenues were considerations in establishing award size.
Do I still need an UEI number? What do I do with it once I have it? What if Im having trouble?
Yes, you still need the UEI number. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org when you have a UEI number. SAM.gov is experiencing delays in issuing UEI numbers and in many cases you may have submitted all of the necessary information but are still waiting. If you are experiencing difficulty with your UEI application, please contact us at email@example.com and we can connect you to technical assistance.
I submitted my application to Maine Technology Institute. What is DMRs role in this program?
The Maine Technology Institute (MTI) administered the application process in close coordination with, and on behalf of, DMR and assisted DMR in processing applications. DMR made the final award decisions. Now that the application process has closed and awards have been granted, DMR will administer the program through completion.
What are the reporting requirements for my award?
As you committed in the attestation form within your application, you must be able to demonstrate use of funds in accordance with your proposal, within the above limitations. Specific requirements:
- For all award recipients, we will contact you within the next quarter regarding the status of your SAMS.gov registration and UEI number. If you received your UEI number after you submitted your application, please send it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- For recipients of ARPA funds who are using any portion of funding for employee compensation, we will contact you within the next quarter to verify whether the grant includes "premium pay" for workers. Please review the description from the U.S. Department of the Treasury that was mailed to you to determine the applicability to your business. If applicable, we will work with you to develop a written justification of how the premium pay supported essential work during the public health emergency for reporting purposes.
- If you are receiving over $50,000 in ARPA funds, we may contact you to verify the place of performance.
- For recipients of USDA funds, please be prepared to provide documentation (e.g., receipts or proof of purchase) for all items being reimbursed.
- For recipients of NOAA funds, there are no specific reporting requirements; however, please be prepared to comply with the auditing requirements listed above.
To qualify and quantify the impact of this unprecedented funding, we will collect additional information in the upcoming months regarding project progress and completion and the effects on your business.
What are the audit requirements for my award?
Please be prepared to justify how expenses supported the projects you identified in your application and retain the following for five years for audit purposes:
- Invoices and receipts for any expenditure or reimbursable expense with manager or owner approval clearly indicated;
- If applicable, signed contracts, justification of selection of vendors, copies of advertisements for vendors, and any bid submissions; and
- Payroll records if using ARPA funds to justify the relationship of an employees work to the grant.
- For ARPA funds, please clearly delineate in your records between ARPA-funded items and regular business items.
We may audit by requiring copies of the above documentation, by site visits and/or by photographs of completed work.
I have a question that isn't answered here - who can I talk to?
Please send any remaining questions you may have to email@example.com and she will help address them.