IV.  Natural Resource Project Ranking Criteria

 

Responses are mandatory and are limited to no more than 200 words for each criterion.    Responses that exceed this limit will not be accepted.

 

1.                  Significance of the Resource or Issue to the Park: How important is the resource or issue to the park involved, relative to it's other resources and issues? 

 

 

2.                  Severity of Resource Threat, Problem, or Need(s): 

 

 

3.                  Problem definition and information base: How well is the problem defined? 

 

 

4.                  Feasibility: 

 

 

5.                  Problem resolution: Will the proposed use of funds contribute directly to decisions or actions, which, when implemented, will meaningfully resolve a management issue?   

 

 

6.                  Transferability: How widely will the project protocols or results be useful? 

 

 

7.         Cost effectiveness: Given problem statement and proposed methodology, are cost estimates realistic and commensurate with the results to be produced?  

 

 

8.         Project Support: What resources (including in-kind contributions) are the park, region or other partner(s) willing to commit to this project?  A detailed description of total project costs, including contributions is required.

 

 

9.                  Scientific Merit: What is the technical and scientific value of the project? (Only applicable to the NPS-USGS Geologic Science and NPS-USGS Water Quality Assessment and Monitoring Partnerships.)

 

Natural Resources Project Ranking Criteria Rating Information

 

These criteria are to be addressed and included with proposals for all Natural Resources funding programs.

 

1.                  Significance of the Resource or Issue to the Park: How important is the resource or issue to the park involved, relative to it's other resources and issues?  (Weighting Factor = X2)

           

            5            High significance: resource or issue is one of the most significant in the park, defined as unique, the subject of the enabling legislation, fundamental to this park's ecosystem and purposes (as opposed to basic resources such as air and water that are fundamental to all parks), high priority in park RMP (is not sufficient in itself), on federal or state lists as endangered or threatened, required by statute, etc.  A "5" will generally require several of these criteria to be met. 

 

            3            Moderate significance: resource or issue is important, but not singularly so for that park.

                                                           

            1            Resource or issue only peripherally related to park's purposes or uses.

 

2.                  Severity of Resource Threat, Problem, or Need(s): (Weighting Factor = X3)

 

            5            Resource threat, problem, or need is current or imminent, and is extensive, persistent, immediate, complex, likely irreversible, a current or imminent risk to public health or safety, and/or hazardous.  Delaying the project will result in, or continue, significant resource degradation.

 

            3            Resource threat, problem, or need is potential, or moderate in extent, persistence, and/or complexity.  Delay of the proposed project may result in, or continue, limited resource degradation.  A potential public health or safety threat exists.

 

            1            Resource threat, problem, or need is minor, infrequent, remote, and/or temporary.  Immediate action is not necessary to protect resources.  Delaying the project will not result in, or continue, significant resource degradation.  Public health/safety is not an issue.

 

3.                  Problem definition and information base: How well is the problem defined?  (Weighting Factor = X2)

 

            5            The project statement clearly defines the problem.  The information base regarding the problem is well described and provides sound foundation for problem resolution. If problem is lack of information, project statement clearly documents extent of existing information or lack thereof.

 

            3            The project statement describes the problem in general terms.  The information base is mentioned but only moderately well described.

 

            1            Problem is poorly defined and/or availability of information is not addressed.

 

4.                  Feasibility : (Weighting Factor = X3)

 

            5              Objectives are clear; methodologies, procedures, and proposed actions are technically sound; and time frame is reasonable to accomplish project objectives.

 

            3              Objectives are fairly clear; or methodologies, procedures, and proposed actions are more or less technically sound; or project objectives may not be accomplished within time frame.

 

            1              Objectives are not clearly stated; or methodologies, procedures, and proposed actions are not technically sound; or project cannot be accomplished within time frames.

 

5.                  Problem resolution: Will the proposed use of funds contribute directly to decisions or actions that, when implemented, will meaningfully resolve a management issue? (Weighting Factor = X3)

 

            5            The proposed project implements [for USGS...or develops information for implementing...] specific management prescriptions that will result in the final resolution of a natural resource issue or threat [for USGS.. once the management phase is implemented...]; no additional actions other than follow-up monitoring are anticipated.

 

            3            The proposed project will contribute to the future resolution of a natural resource issue or threat by clarifying management issues, articulating techniques or procedures, supporting an inter-agency or regional strategy, etc.  Additional studies, management actions, and/or planning will be necessary to completely resolve the stated issue or threat.

 

            1            The proposed project is not directly related to the development of management actions to resolve a specific issue or threat, but will contribute basic information about park natural resources.  The focus here is on collection of baseline data, rather than implementation of a management action.

 

6.                  Transferability: How widely will the project protocols or results be useful? (Weighting Factor = X1)

 

            5            The protocols or results of the project can contribute to tangible needs at the national level (NPS or other organization), and the park demonstrates the intention and ability to make the information available widely.

                                   

            3            The protocols or results of the project can contribute to tangible needs at several parks or other organizations. The park demonstrates the intention and ability to make the information available to other units or organizations.

 

            1            The project's tangible benefits are limited to the park.

 

7.                  Cost effectiveness:  Given problem statement and proposed methodology, are cost estimates realistic and commensurate with the results to be produced? (Weighting Factor = X2)

 

            5            Costs are realistic, well researched, clearly spelled out, and defensible.

 

            3            Costs appear reasonable given stated project objectives and procedures, but proposal does not provide supportive data to indicate how they were determined. 

 

            1            Costs appear disproportionately high or low in relation to the stated project objectives and procedures; proposal does not indicate that costs have been accurately evaluated.

 

8.                  Project Support: What resources (including in-kind contributions) are the park, region or other partner(s) willing to commit to this project?  A detailed description of total project costs, including contributions is required.  (Weighting Factor = X1, except  for NRPP projects, where matching non-federal funds contribute at least 10% of the total project cost the weighting factor is = X2.)

 

            5              70% or more of the project costs covered by park, region or partner(s)

 

            4              51% - 69% of the project costs covered by park, region, or partner(s)

 

            3              39% - 50% of project costs covered by park, region, or partner(s)

 

            2              38% - 10% of project costs covered by park, region, or partner(s)

 

            1              less than 10% of project costs covered by park, region, or partner(s)

 

9.                  Scientific Merit:: What is the technical and scientific value of the project? 

NOTE:  This criterion is applicable only to the NPS-USGS Geologic Science and Water Quality Assessment and Monitoring Partnerships.  (Weighting Factor = X3)

5            The proposed project exhibits superior scientific merit by applying existing or new techniques to study unique and/or complex park problems, and by providing high quality information to managers and the public in useful and original products.

 

3            The proposed project exhibits scientific merit by applying existing techniques to address park problems, and by providing quality information to park managers and the public.

 

1            The proposed project does not exhibit scientific merit but will provide basic water resource information to park managers and the public.