To establish the policy and procedures for applying for grant funds.
To delineate the responsibility for the assessment and administration of grant funds, including compliance and renewal.
This Rule shall apply to all grants where the courts are the applicant, sub-recipient, or pass-through recipient of public or private grant funds. Applicability of this Rule concerning letters of support, or similar non-financial collaborations with external partners, is specified in Section (13).
This Rule applies broadly to encompass all agreements precedent to the potential receipt of grant funds either directly or indirectly. Agreements include, but are not limited to, memoranda of understanding (MOU) and any agreements for which the courts are contributing material resources or incurring risk, express or implied.
The Grant Application Proposal and approval process is also governed by Rule 3-105 (Administration of the Judiciary). Judicial Council review of Grant Application Proposals is governed by and subject to Rule 2-103 (Open and closed meetings) and Rule 2-104 (Recording meetings).
Statement of the Rule:
(1)(A) “Grantor” means the organization providing the funds or the state agency distributing the funds to the courts.
(1)(B) “Grant Application Proposal” (GAP) is the form maintained in the Accounting Manual used to request authorization to pursue grant funding.
(1)(C) “Grant Administering Unit” (GAU) is the Council, committee, court, board of judges, department, or court employee that intends to apply for and administer the grant or grant funds.
(1)(D) “Grant Coordinator” is the individual responsible for facilitating, monitoring, and executing the assessment and administration of Grant Application Proposals ensuring compliance with this Rule and all other applicable state rules, statutes, and federal requirements. Accounting Manual Section 11-07.00(D)(1) further delineates roles and responsibilities.
(1)(E) “Grant Manager” is the individual identified by the GAU or Grant Coordinator to manage the grant for the GAU. Accounting Manual Section 11-07.00(D)(2) further delineates roles and responsibilities.
(1)(F) “Governing Bodies” with oversight of the grant process refer to Boards of Appellate, District, Justice, and Juvenile Court Judges, the Judicial Council, the Budget and Fiscal Management Committee, the Judicial Council Management Committee, the appropriate court-level administrator and trial court executives, and any court committee (standing or ad hoc) vested with authority to direct the affairs of implicated court areas and operations. Judicial Council is the ultimate approving body for the grants process, preceded by the Budget and Fiscal Management Committee’s prior recommendation. Additional Governing Bodies are specific to the implicated court areas. The Grant Coordinator will confirm and may assist the GAU/Grant Manager with identifying the appropriate Governing Bodies. Determinations concerning the exclusive authority reserved by the Supreme Court and Judicial Council are governed by Rule 3-105.
(1)(G) “Notice of Award” (NOA) is the document notifying the applicant that an award has been issued and that funds are available to be accepted. This document contains the terms and conditions of the grant.
(1)(H) “Quorum” is defined in Rule 1-101(1)(S) as “a majority of the members of the Judicial Council, Board, committee or other body.”
(2) Purpose. The purpose of the grants policy is to facilitate the prudent pursuit of grant funds that further the courts’ mission to provide an open, fair, efficient, and independent system for the advancement of justice under the law.
(3) Grant Application Proposals. To apply for a grant, the person who would serve as the Grant Manager shall complete the steps set forth in the Accounting Manual Section 11-07.00(E)(2). The following requirements set forth in 11-07.00(E)(2) are incorporated into this Rule:
(3)(A) The Grant Coordinator, or their designee, must be notified of the applicant’s intent to apply a minimum of 8-weeks prior to the grant submission deadline established by the Grantor.
(4)(A) The Grant Coordinator will conduct a collaborative assessment of the incremental impacts the grant may have on the courts, with particular emphasis on IT Department resources. The Grant Coordinator must consider:
(4)(A)(i) the capacity of each impacted area to support the grant at current staffing levels; and
(4)(A)(ii) whether any incremental impacts would continue when grant funds cease.
(4)(B) Following the assessment, the GAU must incorporate adjustments identified by the Grant Coordinator in the Grant Application Proposal before circulating it for approval.
(5) Approval of Grant Application Proposals
(5)(A) The GAU and Grant Coordinator will present Grant Application Proposals to all Governing Bodies within the court that may benefit from or be impacted by the grant. All Grant Application Proposals must be reviewed and recommended by the Budget and Fiscal Management Committee (“BFMC”) prior to review and vote by the Judicial Council. Grant Application Proposals that do not receive approval from a Governing Body will not be advanced.
(5)(B) No Grant Application Proposal or grant shall be approved unless it is first presented for approval in a regularly scheduled meeting of the Judicial Council as provided in the annual Judicial Council Meeting Schedule and in compliance with Rule 2-103 and Rule 2-104. “Urgent” requests (GAPs with less than an 8-week period between notice and application due date) must also comply with paragraph (5)(A) and may be considered only if the grant funds are non-federal, do not exceed $150,000 inclusive of matching funds, and do not include the hiring of new employees. For an urgent request to be approved it must (1) secure a three-quarters supermajority vote among a Quorum of the Judicial Council in a regular meeting as provided in the Judicial Council Annual Meeting Schedule – ad hoc convenings will not be considered for the purpose of grant or Grant Application Proposal review, and (2) the urgency of the matter must not be precipitated by an “emergency of one’s own causing.”
(5)(C) The GAU must incorporate adjustments identified by a Governing Body in the Grant Application Proposal before it is circulated for re-consideration.
(5)(D) The Grant Coordinator will provide a synopsis of Grant Application Proposals that did not receive approval from a Governing Body to the BFMC.
(5)(E) When evaluating Grant Application Proposals, the BFMC and Judicial Council will consider the following:
(5)(E)(i) Does the grant contribute to accomplishing the mission of the courts?
(5)(E)(ii) Does the grant add value when compared with the burden on existing and future resources, both during the grant project completion phase and thereafter?
(5)(E)(iii) Does the grant provide measurable benefits to marginalized, minority, pro se, or similar under-served individuals or communities?
(5)(E)(iv) Does the grant assist the courts in solving problems and promoting innovations that cannot be accomplished with existing resources?
(5)(E)(v) Does the grant require actions or implementation of policy not in conformity with the mission of the courts or in conformity with policies previously established by the Judicial Council, Supreme Court, or the Utah Constitution?
(5)(E)(vi) Does the grant expose the courts to potential long-term, unfunded financial obligations?
(5)(F) If a Grant Application Proposal or grant implicates both the Supreme Court's and the Judicial Council's exclusive authority, the Supreme Court and the Judicial Council shall comply with Rule 3-105 before making application for the grant or accepting grant funds.
(6) Submission and tracking of approved applications. The tracking of approved submissions will follow the steps set forth in the Accounting Manual Section 11-07.00(E)(5).
(7) Notice of Award and accepting grant funds
(7)(A) Upon receipt of a Notice of Award, the Grant Coordinator will ensure the notice is consistent with the Grant Application Proposal as approved by the Judicial Council.
(7)(B) In accordance with Utah Code, as detailed in the Accounting Manual Section 11-07.00 Exhibit A, if approved by the Judicial Council, the Grant Coordinator will either:
(7)(B)(i) notify the Executive Appropriations Committee (EAC);
(7)(B)(ii) obtain “review and recommendation” from the EAC; or
(7)(B)(iii) obtain approval from the Legislature.
If approval from the Legislature is required, the Grant Coordinator will ensure grant funds are not accepted until Legislative approval is obtained.
(7)(C) If not approved by the Judicial Council, no funds shall be accepted from the grant and the Grant Coordinator and Grant Manager will notify the Grantor of the Judicial Council’s decision not to accept grant funds.
(7)(D) If grant funds may only be accepted with remedial steps, the Grant Coordinator and Grant Manager will communicate those steps in writing to the Grantor. The Grant Coordinator and Grant Manager will work with the State Court Administrator to ensure remediation has been accomplished and to determine whether the grant can be resubmitted for Judicial Council approval.
(8) Grant implementation. Grant implementation will follow the steps set forth in the Accounting Manual Section 11-07.00(E)(7). The following requirements in 11-07.00(E)(7) are incorporated into this Rule:
(8)(A) Judicial Council. Grant funds shall only be used to hire permanent full-time or part-time employees if approved by the Judicial Council and in accordance with Utah Code.
(8)(B) Judicial/Quasi–Judicial duties. If impacted by the grant, the presiding judge(s) of each district shall supervise any judicial or quasi-judicial duties required by the grant.
(9) Grant reporting requirements. Grant reporting to the Grantor will follow the steps set forth in the Accounting Manual Section 11-07.00(E)(8). The following requirements in 11-07.00(E)(8) are incorporated into this Rule:
(9)(A) Judicial Council
(9)(A)(i) Annually, the Grant Coordinator will complete a compliance self-assessment for all grants in the courts’ active portfolio and report the results to the BFMC, Audit Director, and Judicial Council.
(9)(A)(ii) Quarterly, the Grant Coordinator will prepare a summary of:
(9)(A)(ii)(1) all existing court grants;
(9)(A)(ii)(2) a pipeline of potential future grants inclusive of all grants-in-progress under paragraphs (5) and (6); and
(9)(A)(ii)(3) a list of potential grants denied under paragraph (5)(A).
(10) Changes in budget or scope
(10)(A) Any changes to a grant must be documented with a grant amendment, whether or not the Grantor requires such documentation. Changes include, but are not limited to:
(10)(A)(i) revisions to the scope or objectives of the overall grant or any portion thereof;
(10)(A)(ii) transfers of funds between different cost categories with no overall budget impact;
(10)(A)(iii) extensions of time to complete grant spending;
(10)(A)(iv) revisions to the amount of funds needed; or
(10)(A)(v) changes in key personnel named in the grant.
(10)(B) Changes may not be implemented until Grantor approval is obtained in writing and executed between the parties.
(10)(C) The Grant Manager and Grant Coordinator will work together to prepare grant amendments.
(10)(D) Grant amendments described in paragraph (12)(B) must be approved by the Judicial Council. All other amendments must be reviewed by General Counsel staff and signed by the State Court Administrator or designee.
(11) Closing out the grant. Procedures to close out a grant will follow the steps set forth in the Accounting Manual Section 11-07.00(E)(10).
(12) Renewing the grant
(12)(A) Judicial Council approval is required for grant renewal, even when there are no changes to scope, purpose, employees, matching, funding amount, or other areas, or when the prior assessment and/or Legislature approvals will not need to be revised. With appropriate documentation and the recommendation of BFMC, the Management Committee may review and confirm the grant renewal for Judicial Council approval in the consent calendar.
(12)(B) If a grant renewal involves a change that requires a new incremental assessment, or a change to the number of permanent full or part-time employees, or a grant amount requiring a different approval level than previously obtained, the Grant Coordinator will perform the steps in paragraphs (4) and (5). If the grant qualifies, the Grant Coordinator will resubmit the grant to the BFMC and Judicial Council for approval.
(13) Letters of support and other non-financial collaborations
(13)(A) External partners pursuing their own grant opportunities (“principal applicant”) may request the support of the courts as a stakeholder and explicit non-financial collaborator (NFC). Such collaborations are low-risk and provide documented reasonable assurances that no risk nor grant obligations will transfer to the courts directly or indirectly from the principal applicant. Letters of support or similar contributions to grant applications pursued by external partners must (1) be time-limited, (2) not entail the exchange of funds, (3) be non-binding, (4) not include the hiring of court employees, and (5) not commit or otherwise impose financial obligations on the courts.
(13)(A)(i) Agreements meeting all of the criteria in (13)(A) may be referred to the Grant Coordinator who will perform and document a risk assessment to be delivered to the State Court Administrator. If approved by the State Court Administrator or their designee, the Grant Coordinator shall retain a copy of the approval and notify the initiating party of the decision.
(13)(B) If approval is not granted, and assuming sufficient time to comply with this Rule, the State Court Administrator may recommend the request be modified to undergo the full process for Grant Application Proposals, or, withdrawn from all consideration.
(13)(C) All agreements approved or rejected in this process will be documented in the Grant Coordinator’s monthly updates to the Budget and Fiscal Management Committee and Judicial Council.
The Utah State Courts mission is to provide the people an open, fair, efficient, and independent system for the advancement of justice under the law.