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Content provided by the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance
15.615 Cooperative Endangered Species Conservation Fund




Endangered Species Act of 1973, 16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq., as amended; Department of the Interior Appropriations, Public Law 107-63.
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To provide Federal financial assistance to any State or Territory (hereafter, "States"), through its appropriate State or territorial agency, to assist in the development of programs for the conservation of endangered and threatened species.


Project Grants.
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The assistance provided to the State fish and wildlife agency can include animal, plant, and habitat surveys; research; planning; monitoring; habitat protection, restoration, management, and acquisition; and public education. Assistance is restricted to those State agencies with which the Fish and Wildlife Service has a current cooperative agreement for the species involved.


Applicant Eligibility:   Participation limited to State agencies that have a cooperative agreement with the Secretary of the Interior.

Beneficiary Eligibility:   All States that have entered into a cooperative agreement with the Secretary of the Interior.

Credentials/Documentation:   A current cooperative agreement(s) between the Secretary of the Interior and the State Conservation agency(ies) concerning endangered and threatened species is necessary. Costs will be determined in accordance with 43 CFR Part 12, Subpart C, "Uniform Administrative Requirements for Grants and Cooperative Agreements to State and Local Governments." Section 12.62 (of the common rule), identifies Federal cost principles for determining allowable costs. Separate agreements for animals and plants are normally made with each State's responsible agency.

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Pre-application Coordination:   The standard application forms furnished by the Federal agency and required by 43 CFR Part 12, Subpart C, "Uniform Administrative Requirements for Grants and Cooperative Agreements to State and Local Governments," must be used for this program. This program is eligible for coverage under E. O. 12372, "Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs." An applicant should consult the office or official designated as the single point of contact in his or her State for more information on the process the State requires to be followed in applying for assistance, if the State has selected the program for review.

Application Procedure:   A standard application for Federal Assistance is submitted. The project description section of the application should address the evaluation factors identified in the annual request for proposals.

Award Procedure:   Final selection is made by the Secretary of the Interior, based on recommendations by the Director or Regional Director of the Fish and Wildlife Service. Funds are obligated by signature on a project agreement.

Deadlines:   Variable. Contact the regional office for application deadlines.

Range of Approval/Disapproval Time:   Not applicable.

Appeals:   Decisions can be appealed to the Fish and Wildlife Service, Chief, Endangered Species Division of Consultation. Final determination rests with the Secretary of the Interior.

Renewals:   Renewals can be made through submission and approval of a project agreement.


Formula and Matching Requirements:   States may receive up to 75 percent of the program costs. When two or more States have a common interest in one or more endangered or threatened species and enter into a joint agreement, the Federal share may be 90 percent.

Length and Time Phasing of Assistance:   Any amount obligated to any State for any fiscal year remaining unused at end of the year is available to that State until the close of the succeeding fiscal year. Any amount obligated to any State that remains unused at the end of the succeeding fiscal year is available to the Service as reverted funds to conduct other section 6 programs.


Reports:   A performance report is required for each project segment within 90 days following the close of the segment.

Audits:   In accordance with the provisions of OMB Circular No. A- 133 (Revised, June 24, 1997, "Audits of States, Local Governments, and Non-Profit Organizations," nonfederal entities that receive financial assistance of $300,000 or more in Federal Awards will have a single or a program-specific audit conducted for that year. Nonfederal entities that expend less than $300,000 a year in Federal awards are exempt from Federal audit requirements for that year, except as noted in Circular No. A-133.

Records:   Records must be maintained for 3 years following the submission of request for final reimbursement.


Account Identification:   14-5143-0-2-303.

Obligations:   (Grants) FY 01 $104,694,000; FY 02 est $96,235,000; and FY 03 est $91,000,000.

Range and Average of Financial Assistance:  
Varies by program element.

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In fiscal year 2001, a total of $104,694,000 was appropriated to the Cooperative Endangered Species Conservation Fund (CESCF) (Section 6 of the Endangered Species Act). This represented an increase of approximately $82,000,000 over the FY 2000 appropriation, and allowed for the creation of four new grant programs in FY 2001: Recovery Land Acquisition, Habitat Conservation Planning Assistance, Safe Harbor, and Candidate Conservation Agreement Grants. Through the traditional Conservation Grants program, $7,503,000 was allocated regionally based on the number of species covered under cooperative agreements within each region. An unprecedented $68,773,000 in Habitat Conservation Planning (HCP) Land Acquisition Grant funding was used to fund 15 individual projects out of 17 proposals across 10 States. The new Recovery Land Acquisition Grant program ($10,427,000) awarded 13 out of 46 proposals to provide project funding in 10 states. The new Habitat Conservation Planning Assistance Grant program awarded 24 out of 43 proposals to provide project funding in 14 states. For the Safe Harbor and Candidate Conservation Agreement Grant Programs, each was funded at $4,740,000. In fiscal year 2002, the Service will provide $7,520,000 to States for traditional Conservation Grants; $6,650,000 for Habitat Conservation Planning Assistance Grants; $61,306,000 for HCP Land Acquisition Grants; and $17,759,000 for Recovery Land Acquisition Grants. Funding through the Safe Harbor Grants and the Candidate Conservation Agreement Grants is not available in fiscal year 2002.


Endangered Species Act, 50 CFR 81, Federal Aid Manual.


Regional or Local Office:  
See Regional Agency Offices. Please visit to access a list of regional program contacts.

Headquarters Office:  
Chief, Ecological Services Chief, Ecological Services Division of Restoration and Recovery, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior, 5275 Leesburg Pike, MS: ES, , Falls Church, Virginia 22041-3803 Phone: (703) 358-2171.

Web Site Address:


A variety of projects were funded through the Cooperative Endangered Species Conservation Fund in FY 2001, including Habitat Conservation Planning Assistance grants to develop Habitat Conservation Plans across the country in areas ranging from the North Slope of Alaska to the islands of Hawaii, from the mountains of West Virginia to the forests of the Pacific Northwest. These HCPs will benefit a wide range of plants and animals, including the Houston toad in Texas, Ute ladies-tresses in Washington state, and the Florida golden aster in Florida. Most of the HCPs will address multiple species, many of them on a city, county or large watershed basis. Recovery Land Acquisition grants awarded in fiscal year 2001 will be used to acquire and protect important prairie, coastal, mountainous desert, cave, and riparian habitat, land that represents critical portions of species' last remaining habitat. Some of these acquisitions support many endangered species, as well as important habitat for migratory birds and other wildlife. For example, acquisition of property in Kern County, California benefits the largest known population of the Kern primrose sphinx moth by securing protection for an area that is the only place this species has been sighted in the past 20 years. In Tennessee, acquisition of a 25-acre site will protect one of only five known populations of the endangered Tennessee coneflower. HCP Land Acquisitions in fiscal year 2001 will be used to help acquire vital habitat for threatened and endangered species ranging from loggerhead turtles in Florida to imperiled songbirds in Texas. The lands acquired under the HCP Land Acquisition program are purchased only from willing sellers, and are intended to complement but do not replace the conservation responsibilities contained in a HCP.


Proposals for grant funding must be submitted by the State fish and wildlife agency. The State must have an approved cooperative agreement with the Secretary of the Interior which provides for sharing responsibilities for endangered species, prior to receiving Cooperative Endangered Species Conservation Fund (section 6 of the Endangered Species Act) funds. Individual project proposals must compete with other State submissions for funding.

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