§1944.404 (Con.) RD Instruction 1944-I
(b) Have the financial, legal, administrative, and actual capacity to assume and carry out the responsibilities imposed by the Agreement. To meet the requirement of actual capacity it must either:
(1) Have necessary background and experience with proven ability to perform responsibly in the field of mutual self-help or other business management or administrative ventures which indicate an ability to perform responsibly in the field of mutual self-help; or
(2) Be sponsored by an organization with background experience, and ability, which agrees in writing to help the applicant to carry out its responsibilities.
(c) Legally obligate itself to administer TA funds, provide adequate accounting of the expenditure of such funds, and comply with the Agreement and Rural Development regulations.
(d) If the organization is a private nonprofit corporation, be a corporation that:
(1) Is organized under State and local laws.
(2) Is qualified under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986.
(3) Has as one of its purposes the production of affordable housing.
(4) Has a Board of Directors which consist of not less than five.
§1944.405 Authorized use of grant funds.
(a) Payment of salaries of personnel as authorized in the Agreement.
(b) Payment of necessary and reasonable office expenses such as office rental, office utilities, and office equipment rental. The purchase of office equipment is permissible when the grantee determines it to be more economical than renting. As a general rule, these types of expenses would be classified as indirect costs in multiple funded organizations.
(11-15-90) SPECIAL PN
RD Instruction 1944-I
(c) Purchase of office supplies such as paper, pens, pencils, and trade magazines.
(d) Payment of necessary employee benefit costs including but not limited to items such as Worker's Compensation, employer's share of social security, health benefits, and a reasonable tax deferred pension plan for permanent employees.
(e) Purchase, lease, or maintenance of power or specialty tools such as a power saw, electric drill, saber saw, ladders, and scaffolds, which are needed by the participating families. The participating families, however, are expected to provide their own hand tools such as hammers and handsaws.
(f) Payment of liability insurance and special purpose audit costs associated with self-help activities. These would be considered direct costs, even though the grantee's general liability insurance cost and the cost of audits for the organization are generally indirect costs.
(g) Payment of reasonable fees for training of grantee personnel including board members. This may include the cost of travel and per diem to attend in or out-of-state training as authorized by the board of directors and, when necessary, for the employee to do the current job. These costs are generally direct costs.
(h) Payment of services rendered by a sponsor or other organization after the grant is closed and when it is determined the sponsor can provide the necessary services which will result in an overall reduction in the cost of assistance. Typically, this will be limited to new grantees and an existing grantee for the period of time that its size or activity does not justify a full staff. A full staff is a full or part-time director, project worker, secretary-bookkeeper, and a construction supervisor. This type of cost is generally direct.
(i) Payment of certain consulting and legal costs required in the administration of the grant if such service is not available without cost. This does not include legal expenses for claims against the Federal Government. (Legal costs that may be incurred by the organization for the benefit of the participating families may be paid with prior approval of the State Director).
(j) Payments of the cost of an accountant to set up an accounting system and perform audits that may be required. Generally, these costs are indirect.
(k) Payments of reasonable expenses of board members for attending regular or special board meetings. These costs are indirect.
RD Instruction 1944-I
§1944.406 Prohibited use of grant funds.
(a) Hiring personnel specifically for the purpose of performing any of the construction work for participating families in the self-help projects.
(b) Buying real estate or building materials or other property of any kind for participating families.
(c) Paying any debts, expenses, or costs which should be the responsibility of the participating families in the self-help projects.
(d) Paying for training of an employee as authorized by
Attachment B of OMB Circular A-122.
(e) Paying costs other than approved indirect (including salaries) that are not directly related to helping very low- and low-income families obtain housing consistent with the objectives of this program.
The amount of the TA grant depends on the experience and capability of the applicant and must be justified based on the number of families to be assisted. As a guide, the maximum grant amounts for any grant period will be limited to:
(a) An average TA cost equivalent per unit of no more than 15 percent of the cost of equivalent value of modest homes built in the area. (Upon request, the County Supervisor will provide the grantee the average cost of modest homes for the area); or
(Revised 04-24-91, PN 163.)
(b) An average TA cost per equivalent unit that does not exceed the difference between the equivalent value of modest homes in the area and the average mortgage of the participating families minus $1,000; or
(c) A TA per equivalent unit cost that does not exceed an amount established by the State Director. The State Director may authorize a greater TA cost than paragraph (a) or (b) of this section when needed to accomplish a particular objective, such as requiring the grantee to serve very low-income families, remote areas, or similar situations; or
(d) A negotiated amount for repair and rehabilitation type proposals. At a minimum, applicants applying for repair and rehabilitation grants must include information on the proximity of the houses in a project, the typical needed repairs, and the cost savings between self-help and contractor rehabilitation and repair.