FY 2024 Round 1 School Maintenance Project Grant
Open for Applications: September 5 to December 1, 2023
The fiscal year 2024 Round 1 School Maintenance Project Grant application period will open Tuesday, September 5. All applications must be submitted in IWAS to the applicable Regional Office of Education by 4 p.m. December 1 – no exceptions. All applications must then be submitted by the Regional Office of Education to the Illinois State Board of Education by 4 p.m. December 15 – no exceptions.
There is approximately $46.7 million available for the FY 2024 Round 1 School Maintenance Project Grant (SMPG) program. Grants will be approved up to the amount released by the Governor’s Office of Management and Budget. Future application cycles will be open when funds are released.
The SMPG is a dollar-for-dollar state matching grant program that will provide awards up to $50,000 to grantees exclusively for the maintenance or upkeep of buildings or structures for educational purposes. Ongoing operational costs, including in-house labor for SMPG projects not contracted out, cannot be included for any School Maintenance Project Grant. There is no limit to the cost of a project; however, grant awards shall not exceed $50,000 per grant award, and applicants shall provide a match from local funds equal to the grant amount requested. An applicant must not obligate funds or begin work on any of the projects listed on the application prior to submission of the application in IWAS. However, submission of the application does not guarantee a grant will be approved or awarded. All project activities must be expended or legally obligated within two years of disbursement by the state. If funds have been obligated by the grantee but not fully expended two years after disbursement, 90 calendar days will be allowed to liquidate all obligations.
U.S. Department of Education guidance indicates that FY 2024 School Maintenance Project Grant applications will allow for the use of Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief III funds to meet the local match requirement.
Eligible Applicants: Any school district, cooperative high school, Type 40 area vocational center, or special education cooperative may apply for the grant. Please refer to the list of eligible applicants.
A summary of the steps that are necessary to fully execute the FY 2024 Round 1 SMPG are as follows:
- Complete and submit the SMPG Grant Application via IWAS. Local board approval is required for completion of this step. (A board resolution is NOT required.)
- Regional superintendent must review and approve.
- ISBE School Business Services Department must review and approve.
No amendments can be made to the application after it has been approved by ISBE.
Grants shall be awarded in order of five priorities within each round:
- "Emergency projects" are projects made necessary by a disaster as described in School Construction Law, Section 5-30 (1). Conditions caused by age or lack of timely maintenance do not constitute an emergency. Costs of an emergency project that are covered by insurance may not be claimed as part of an emergency project.
- "Health/life safety (H/LS) projects" are projects to remodel or improve an existing structure (within the existing exterior walls) to correct a violation of the Health/Life Safety Code for Public Schools (23 Ill. Adm. Code 180) OR to provide handicapped accessibility or school security (e.g., providing a secure entrance or vestibule to prevent an active threat or active shooter).
- "State priority projects" are projects necessary for energy conservation or that adapt a building or structure to better serve students in a specific program for which the applicant receives funding under the School Code (e.g., preschool education, school technology).
- "Permanent improvement projects" are projects designed to upgrade or install building systems (e.g., air conditioning, electrical or plumbing systems) or involve other improvements to a building or structure so that the building or structure is better adapted to the applicant educational programs.
- "Other projects" that don’t fit in any of the above categories.
All grant awards will be awarded to emergencies first, followed by the H/LS priority, and then to the other priority levels until funds run out. Applications in the priority level where funds run out before all applications can be awarded will be ranked and awarded by the district’s need index within that priority level. The amendments that are required for H/LS priority Level B must be submitted no later than 4 p.m. Friday, December 1, 2023 – no exceptions.
IMPORTANT REQUIREMENTS FOR GRANT RECIPIENTS:
- Quarterly Expenditure Reports are due within 20 calendar days of the quarter end dates (December 31, March 31, June 30, September 30). The Quarterly Reports for these grants will be submitted in IWAS. They are used to report expenditures for each awarded grant.
- Final Expenditure Report is due within 20 calendar days after the project is completed. It should describe the use of the grant funds and actual project expenditures. If actual project expenditures are less than expected (so that the amount of the grant is greater than 50 percent of the total project expenditures), the applicant shall refund the amount of the grant that is in excess of 50 percent of actual project expenditures, including any interest earned on the unexpended portion.
- All project activities must be expended or legally obligated within two years of disbursement by the state. If funds have been obligated but not fully expended two years after disbursement, 90 calendar days will be allowed to liquidate all obligations.
Contact Madison Dean in the School Business Services Department at SMPG@isbe.net or 217-785-8779 if you have questions.