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Financial Assistance

Refer to the complete Federal Assistance Listings entry for applicant eligibility and program contacts ( All programs are subject to the provisions of 2 CFR Part 200 and Department of the Interior regulations 2 CFR Part 1402 and 43 CFR Part 12.

Application form Standard Form (SF) 424 must be used. The application requirements as contained in the announcement package and the above regulations apply to all USGS Financial Assistance programs. Applications may be made only through

Refer to individual application packages posted to for application deadlines.

USGS COVID-19 Guidance for Financial Assistance

On March 9, 2020, the Office of Management and Budget (“OMB”) issued OMB Memorandum 20-11, “Administrative Relief for Recipients and Applicants of Federal Financial Assistance Directly Impacted by the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19).” The memorandum allowed awarding agencies to grant flexibility in ten different grant administration areas. This first memorandum applied to recipients that conducted or provided research or services necessary to the coronavirus emergency response.

On March 19, 2020, OMB issued a second memorandum, OMB Memorandum 20-17, “Administrative Relief for Recipients and Applicants of Federal Financial Assistance Directly Impacted by the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) due to Loss of Operations.” It added three additional areas of flexibility to those stated in Memorandum 20-11, and authorized agencies to offer those flexibilities more broadly, to any “recipients affected by the loss of operational capacity and increased costs due to the COVID-19 crisis.”

On April 6, 2020, 0MB issued a third memorandum, OMB Memorandum 20-20, "Repurposing Existing Federal Financial Assistance Programs and Awards to Support the Emergency Response to the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)," which provides a class exception that allows Federal awarding agencies to repurpose their Federal assistance awards (in whole or part) to support the COVID-19 response, as consistent with applicable laws. This exception includes the donation of medical equipment and supplies purchased with Federal funds and repurposing of funds to COVID-19 related activities.

On June 18, 2020, OMB issued a fourth memorandum, OMB Memorandum 20-26, “Extension of Administrative Relief for Recipients and Applicants of Federal Financial Assistance Directly Impacted by the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) due to Loss of Operations,” which rescinds M-20-11 and M-20-20. M-20-11 expires on July 26, 2020. This memorandum also provides an extension of Allowability of salaries and other project activities through September 30, 2020 and Extension of Single Audit submission through December 31, 2020 to allow a responsible transition to normal operations. 

The Department of the Interior (DOI) Office of Grants Management (PGM) is primarily responsible for assessing and providing guidance to bureaus as necessary. DOI PGM developed FAQs in response to the OMB guidance. As PGM prepares more questions, the list will be updated. USGS specific guidance is available here.

For USGS recipients, please read about additional administrative relief for U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) applicants and recipients affected by COVID-19

Questions about this guidance should be directed to the OAG Grants Analyst or your USGS Project Officer and/or Grant or Contract Specialist, as directed.


Assistance Listings

CFDA Program Title Program Description
15.805 Assistance to State Water Resources Research Institutes To provide financial support to Water Resources Research Institutes located at designated State universities in each of the 50 States, Puerto Rico, the District of Columbia, Guam, the Virgin Islands, American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, and the Federated States of Micronesia for research, information transfer and student training on one or more aspects of priority water problems.
15.807 Earthquake Hazards Program Assistance To support earthquake hazards research and monitoring in order to develop information, knowledge, and methods relevant to the major Earthquake Hazards Program elements: Assessment and Characterization of Earthquake Hazards; Monitoring and Reporting Earthquake Activity and Crustal Deformation; Conducting Research into Earthquake Causes and Effects; and Earthquake and Safety Information for Loss Reduction. Specific objectives and research tasks identified as measures of progress towards the goals of these program elements are described in greater detail in Program Announcements posted to
15.808 U.S. Geological Survey Research and Data Collection To support research complementary to USGS program efforts in classification of the public lands and examination of the geological structure, water, mineral, and biological resources, and products of the national domain. This entry covers a variety of USGS assistance awards not covered by any other CFDA program entries. Awards are typically supported by funding from internal projects and programs, and funds are not separately budgeted or reserved for external projects or proposals under this entry.
15.810 National Cooperative Geologic Mapping To produce geologic maps of areas in which knowledge of geology is important to the economic, social, or scientific welfare of individual States. StateMap supports: (1) projects which produce new geologic maps with attendant explanatory information including correlation of map units, description of map units and symbols, stratigraphic columns, geologic sections, and other pertinent information; and (2) projects which compile existing geologic data in a digital form for inclusion in the National Digital Geologic Map Database. EdMap: Provide funding for undergraduate and graduate students in academic research programs, through cooperative agreements, that involve geologic mapping and scientific data analysis as major components; expand research and educational capacity of graduate programs that teach earth science students the techniques of geologic mapping and field data analysis; and facilitate the publication and distribution of geologic maps generated in field-based graduate academic research programs.
15.811 Gap Analysis Studies where native animal species and natural plant communities occur and identifies "gaps" in their representation to support conservation of biodiversity.
15.812 Cooperative Research Units To work in partnership with States and universities to address the information needs of local, State, and Federal fish, wildlife, and natural resource agencies through research, technical assistance, and education. 
15.814 National Geological and Geophysical Data Preservation To preserve and provide access to geological, geophysical, and engineering samples (and any related data) extracted from the Earth to improve the breadth of information available and to inform science and decision making now and in the future.
15.815 National Land Remote Sensing Education Outreach and Research To promote the uses of space-based land remote sensing data and technologies through education and outreach at the State and local level and through university based and collaborative research projects. Technologies of interest include multispectral and hyper-spectral electro-optical, thermal, and radar.
15.817 National Geospatial Program: Building The National Map To promote the uses of space-based land remote sensing data and technologies through education and outreach at the State and local level and through university based and collaborative research projects. Technologies of interest include multispectral and hyper-spectral electro-optical, thermal, and radar.
15.818 Volcano Hazards Program Research and Monitoring To advance the scientific understanding of volcanic processes and to lessen the harmful impacts of volcanic activity. The Volcano Hazards Program (VHP) monitors active and potentially active volcanoes, assesses their hazards, responds to volcanic crises, and conducts research on how volcanoes work to fulfill a Congressional mandate (Public Law 93-288) that the USGS issue "timely warnings" of potential volcanic hazards to responsible emergency-management authorities and to the populace affected. VHP provides domestic assistance in order to expand the expertise and capabilities applied to fulfilling its mission.
15.819 Energy Cooperatives to Support the National Energy Resources Data System To collect, interpret, correlate, and evaluate energy-related stratigraphic, chemical, and GIS data that support USGS Energy Resources Program research initiatives; to build and maintain national energy databases of; to conduct energy related research and apply knowledge gained to conduct resource assessments within the United States in order to further the understanding of energy resources within a global, geologic, economic and environmental context.
15.820 National and Regional Climate Adaptation Science Centers To enable the National Climate Change and Wildlife Science Center (NCCWSC) and the eight Department of the Interior Climate Science Centers (DOI CSC) to be responsive to the research and management needs of Federal and State agencies by working with partners to provide science and technical support regarding the impacts of climate change in fish, wildlife, plants and ecological processes and the mechanisms for adaptation to, mitigation of, or prevention of those impacts. Center activities will focus on providing national and regional habitat and population modeling and forecasting tools, integrating physical climate models with ecological models, assessing vulnerabilities and forecasting changes, and developing standardized approaches.
15.978 Upper Mississippi River Restoration Long Term Resource Monitoring Program To provide decision makers with information needed to maintain the Upper Mississippi River System (UMRS) as a sustainable large river ecosystem given its multiple-use character. Congress has declared the UMRS to be both a nationally significant ecosystem and a nationally significant commercial navigation system. The long-term goals of the LTRM are to: understand the UMRS ecosystem, monitor trends and effects with respect to selected resources, develop resource management alternatives, manage information, and develop useful products.
15.979 Hurricane Sandy To support research and data collection complementary to continued USGS activities supporting recovery and restoration efforts related to Hurricane Sandy. This entry covers a variety of USGS assistance awards funded through the Disaster Relief Appropriations Act. Data, tools, and information produced through these research and data collection efforts will 1) further characterize impacts and changes, 2) guide mitigation and restoration of impacted communities and ecosystems, 3) inform a redevelopment strategy aimed at developing resilient coastal communities and ecosystems, 4) improve preparedness and responsiveness to the next hurricane or similar coastal disaster, and 5) enable improved hazard assessment, response, and recovery for future storms along the hurricane prone shoreline of the United States.
15.980 National Ground-Water Monitoring Network To support data providers for the National Ground-Water Monitoring Network. The National Ground-Water Monitoring Network (NGWMN) is a cooperative, integrated system of data collection, management, and reporting that will provide data needed to address groundwater management questions. Assistance is provided to new and existing data providers of the National Ground-Water Monitoring Network. The program will provide support to multi-state, State, Tribal, or local Water-Resource agencies which collect groundwater data to serve as data providers for the National Ground-Water Monitoring Network. Support will allow the data providers to perform tasks to get their data into the Network such as: selecting and categorizing their wells within NGWMN specifications, adding sites to the network, establishing and maintaining connections between their databases and the NGWMN Portal, and to enhance their networks to provide better data to the NGWMN.
15.981 Water Use and Data Research To support State water resource agencies in developing water use and availability datasets that are integrated with each appropriate dataset developed or maintained by the USGS or that integrate any water use or water availability dataset of the State water resource agency into each appropriate dataset developed or maintained by the USGS. The Water Use Data and Research program will allow State Water Resource agencies to improve the collection and reporting frequency of water use categories, including the inclusion of categories that have been discontinued in the past due to limited resources. Data collection, and improvement efforts, as well as research conducted will complement priorities and investigations carried by Federal, State, and Local Governments, and by private industry in water availability assessments for human and ecological uses.


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