California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle) 

Questions and Answers: Recycled Fiber, Plastic, and Glass Grant Program (FY 2014/15)

Questions about the Recycled Fiber, Plastic, and Glass Grant Program grant application were accepted in writing only, no later than June 25, 2014. Similar or related questions were grouped together or reworded for clarity and responded to as one question.

The question and answer period is now closed for this grant cycle. All questions and answers are posted on this site.

General

  1. Is there a list of previously awarded grants?
    This is the first cycle of the Recycled Fiber, Plastic, and Glass Grant Program; therefore, no grants have been awarded. Visit http://www.calrecycle.ca.gov/Funding/Reports/ to view other grants awarded by CalRecycle.
  2. I had a question about the type of product we will manufacture to reduce GHG, however due to the confidential nature of it, we would not like it to be posted on the Q&A section. Does every question we ask to this email get posted?
    Because this is a competitive grant, all questions will be answered through the Question and Answer (Q&A) process and posted to ensure that all interested parties have the same information. Please see Application & Guidelines for more information regarding CalRecycle’s confidentiality policy.
  3. For the application, can the address of the proposed project/site be changed after the grant has been awarded? Within the course of the review/approval process, better locations may become available for the project. The same question goes for equipment. Depending on the percent grant awarded, this could alter the equipment we would be able to purchase.
    Any changes to the proposed project are subject to the approval of the grant manager and must not result in material changes including, but not limited to, the GHG emission reductions or tons of material that would be diverted from a landfill as a result of the project.
  4. When will this grant be open to apply to in the future? Is it awarded annually?
    Future Fiber, Plastic, & Glass grant opportunities are dependent on funding availability as appropriated in the annual budget act. Funding for additional Fiber, Plastic, & Glass grant cycles has not been appropriated.
  5. How detailed should the descriptions of proposed equipment be?
    The description should be detailed enough for staff to determine project eligibility.
  6. Are there any situations where CalRecycle would require review and approval (stamp) of a Registered Professional Engineer for a grant project?
    Construction and processes must comply with all local and state codes and regulations.
  7. The forms provided for estimation of Greenhouse Gas (GHG) reductions and increase in diversion of material away from landfills has a reporting span of 11 years (2015-2025). Is this period the recommended “life of the project?” If the applicant chooses to use this time period for the life of the project, would that be an acceptable time frame for CalRecycle?
    The application requires the projected annual GHG emission reductions for the project through 2025 and the grant dollars spent per million metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent (MTCO2e) over this time period. While the tons diverted and the GHG reductions need to be reported for a span of 11 years in the application it is anticipated the life of the project will extend beyond 2025.
  8. If a proposed grant project will upgrade existing equipment on an established manufacturing process that leads to measurable GHG reductions and increased recycling and achieves this by replacing existing equipment with innovative new technology equipment, is a letter from the Lead Agency for California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) compliance necessary? No discretionary decision will be made by any regulatory authority with an equipment replacement, so we request clarification on what level of CEQA determination is required?
    The applicant is required to describe the anticipated level of CEQA review required for the project, the current status of its CEQA review, and the projected timeline for completing CEQA. The lead agency determines the level of CEQA review. The applicant needs to provide copies of or a link to your CEQA documentation if it is available. If the lead agency determines CEQA review is not required, provide documentation from the lead agency confirming that CEQA review is not required. If you are unable to provide documentation from the lead agency indicating that CEQA review is not required, you will receive less points for that section of the scoring criteria.

Eligibility

  1. Would old corrugated cardboard qualify as fiber?
    Old corrugated cardboard is an eligible material type provided that it is generated in California and, prior to the grant, this material was landfilled.
  2. We have an innovative plan that will reduce expanded polystyrene (EPS Styrofoam) in Santa Cruz County. Can we assume that EPS is considered a plastic and would be covered under this grant opportunity?
    Expanded polystyrene is considered a plastic and is covered under the grant. This project may be eligible if it accomplishes the project requirements below
    Projects must be located in California and result in permanent, annual, and measurable:
    • Reductions in Greenhouse Gas emissions by manufacturing products with California-generated recycled-content fiber, plastic, or glass; and
    • Increased quantity (tons) of California-generated fiber, plastic, and glass materials diverted from landfills, and used to manufacture products.
  3. The client is taking a recycled material (old corrugated cardboard), removing elements that they need and then is sending the remaining pulp on to a biomass or other cardboard processor – Would they qualify on their own or would they need to partner with someone else?
    The applicant would need to be manufacturing a finished product with the elements they are removing from the old corrugated cardboard (OCC) and that OCC must have been destined for landfill prior to the grant award in order for them to qualify. In addition, the applicant needs to provide an explanation of the amount and destination of remaining materials not used including residuals sent to the landfill.
  4. We are a Cathode Ray Tube (CRT) Recycler located in Ontario, CA. We are E-stewards and ISO (International Organization for Standards) 14001 Certified. We are working to develop an application for use of CRT Panel Glass. I want to inquire will this be qualified?
    The project would have to meet all of the eligibility requirements including: 1) Reductions in greenhouse gas emissions by manufacturing products with California-generated recycled-content fiber, plastic, or glass; and 2) Increases in quantity (tons) of California-generated fiber, plastic, and glass materials diverted from landfills, and used to manufacture finished products.
  5. As we read through the criteria for application submittal, it reads as though the products created from the recycled material (in our case, grades 3-7 plastic waste) must be a “physical product” our process turns plastic waste into a high-grade crude oil (through pyrolysis/gasification). Do we meet the criteria and are we still eligible to apply for this Grant?
    No.
  6. Ineligible costs identified in the grant guidelines include “Costs associated with projects that use pyrolysis, gasification or other thermal conversion technologies to create products.” Would a styrofoam densifier be ineligible? It uses a laser to heat the expanded polystyrene (EPS styrofoam).
    Equipment to reduce the volume of styrofoam would not be eligible unless it was part of a project that resulted in reductions in Greenhouse Gas emissions by manufacturing products with California-generated recycled-content plastic and increased quantity (tons) of California-generated plastic materials diverted from landfills.
  7. Would grant monies be available under this grant for owner-operators of material recovery facilities for the purpose of implementing improvements/enhancements to fiber recovery efforts? The eligibility section makes reference to “owners/operators of solid waste facilities” but the eligible projects descriptions suggest that only manufacturers would qualify.
    The project must meet all eligibility requirements including:
    • Increased quantity (tons) of California-generated fiber, plastic, and glass materials diverted from landfills, and used to manufacture products.
    For the purposes of this program, a manufactured “product” is defined as a good or package in a form which requires no further processing before it is offered for sale to an end-user. It does not include intermediate products, such as plastic pellets sold as feedstock to a converter for fabrication into a consumer product.
  8. Is a project utilizing carpet feedstock eligible?
    Yes, carpet is an eligible feedstock. The project must accomplish all project requirements including:
    Located in California and result in permanent, annual, and measurable:
    • Reductions in Greenhouse Gas emissions by manufacturing products with California-generated recycled-content fiber, plastic, or glass; and
    • Increased quantity (tons) of California-generated fiber, plastic, and glass materials diverted from landfills, and used to manufacture products.
  9. Background for Question 9:
    A papermill located in CA receives and recycles a large quantity of waste paper fiber in the form of Old Corrugated Containers (OCC). OCC is pulped, cleaned, formed and dried to produce a sheet of paperboard. During the cleaning process, contaminants are removed from the pulp and disposed of as “Rejects”. Equipment can be installed to recover several tons per day of fiber from the Rejects. The project will reduce the amount of fiber Rejects sent to landfills and reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the decomposition of fiber within the landfill. The paperboard is sold to Boxplants, located primarily in California, where it is used to manufacture corrugated boxes. Prior to sale the paperboard requires no further processing or forming.
    Questions
    • Is paperboard a “Manufactured Product” within the context of the grant program?
      No, the corrugated boxes would be the manufactured product.
    • Is the above-described fiber recovery project eligible for grant funding?
      No. However, the project could be eligible as a partner with a grantee who is manufacturing corrugated boxes
  10. Would upgrades to a Materials Recovery Facility (MRF) processing facility qualify for the grant? The plan would be to improve the process of glass, which would produce more glass along with cleaner glass. The glass would then be shipped to a glass processing facility for additional processing. Most of this material will eventually be shipped to bottle manufactures to make new bottles.
    No. However, the project could be eligible as a cooperative grant with a grantee who is manufacturing a consumer product. The project must meet all eligibility requirements including:
    • Increased quantity (tons) of California-generated fiber, plastic, and glass materials diverted from landfills, and used to manufacture products.
    For the purposes of this program, a manufactured “product” is defined as a good or package in a form which requires no further processing before it is offered for sale to an end-user. It does not include intermediate products sold as feedstock to a converter for fabrication into a consumer product.
  11. According to the grant guidelines, the purchase or retrofitting of vehicles or containers for collection of feedstock are ineligible costs. What is considered feedstock?
    The term “feedstock”, within the context of this grant program, refers to fiber, plastic and/or glass waste materials. Instead of sending these waste materials to a disposal facility, these materials can be utilized as feedstock by a manufacturing facility that produces final products.
  12. We intend to recycle Expanded Polystyrene (EPS) into blocks and sell to a manufacturer that will create consumer products. However, the Application Guidelines lead us to believe that we must be the recycler and a new product manufacturer all in one. Does the grant require that recyclers must create a consumer product themselves?
    The project must meet all eligibility requirements including:
    • Increased quantity (tons) of California-generated fiber, plastic, and glass materials diverted from landfills, and used to manufacture products.
    For the purposes of this program, a manufactured “product” is defined as a good or package in a form which requires no further processing before it is offered for sale to an end-user. It does not include intermediate products, such as plastic pellets sold as feedstock to a converter for fabrication into a consumer product.
  13. Would selling Expanded Polystyrene (EPS) blocks to a manufacturer of consumer products qualify under this grant opportunity?
    No. However, the project could be eligible as a cooperative grant with a grantee who is manufacturing a consumer product. For the purposes of this program, a manufactured “product” is defined as a good or package in a form which requires no further processing before it is offered for sale to an end-user. It does not include intermediate products, such as plastic pellets sold as feedstock to a converter for fabrication into a consumer product.

Funding

  1. I’d like to know how much is the local match requirement, if there is one, for the subject.
    Matching funds are not required. However, matching funds can improve the cost-effectiveness of your proposal and enable you to keep managerial and miscellaneous costs to a minimum, which are areas considered in the Budget criterion score. In addition, use of matching funds is a positive indication that other funding may be available to sustain the program after the grant term has ended.
  2. We have heard that the Legislature has decided not to fund this grant program.
    Funding for the grants ($20 million) and loan ($5 million) program has been included in the budget passed by the Legislature, which was signed by the Governor on June 20, 2014. Please refer to Senate Bill 852 and 854.
  3. Is the "5 percent of grant awarded" maximum in the "Ineligible Costs" section referring to each item (permitting, public education/outreach, indirect overhead, salaries that are not related to construction/installation) or referring to the total amount of all of these items?
    It is costs exceeding 5 percent of the total amount, not each item for: permitting, public education/outreach, indirect/overhead, and salaries not related to construction or installation.
  4. Can the 10 percent withheld be paid out at the completion of a phase of operation or at the end of the project only?
    Ten percent of each approved Payment Request amount will be retained by CalRecycle until the Grant Manager approves the Final Progress Report, the final Payment Request and all required supporting documentation.
  5. Is the purchase of transportation equipment for delivering the recycled end product to the consumer eligible for grant funding?
    No.

Application

  1. After logging into CalRecycle “Web Pass” I do not see any option to begin an application for the Recycled Fiber, Plastic, and Glass Grant Program. Has the application been posted yet?
    After logging on to the Grant Management System select “Grant Application Search” on the left navigation bar. In the middle of the screen are the CalRecycle grants available at this time; on the far right there is an “Apply” button, select this and you can begin your application.
  2. For this program, must we submit the Recycled Fiber, Plastic, and Glass (FPG) Certification Form when applying for the grant?
    This documentation is to show that the recycled-content material used by your grant project is California-generated waste; it must be submitted with the application. It also guarantees an adequate amount of feedstock will be provided to make the project feasible. This may include a signed contract, letter of intent, or other documentation which shows the feedstock will be available by the time the project is operational.
    CalRecycle has updated the Recycled Fiber, Plastic, and Glass (FPG) Certification Form as of June 13, 2014 with modified language to correlate with the application process.
  3. In the fiscal soundness section, I am unable to enter any information into the Entity ID number field or the Other Documents field. Do you have a version that allows data entry in these fields?
    The Narrative Proposal document was corrected and has been uploaded to the Grants Management System under the Resource Documents section of the Summary tab.
  4. Where can I obtain a copy of the application?
    You first have to create a WebPass account. This is done on the Grants Management System webpage at http://www.calrecycle.ca.gov/Funding/GMS/default.htm. Once your WebPass has been activated, you will use your email address and password to sign in at GMS Sign-In
    After logging on to the Grant Management System, select “Grant Application Search” on the left navigation bar. In the middle of the screen are the CalRecycle grants available at this time; on the far right there is an “Apply” button, select this and you can begin your application.
  5. The budget spreadsheet for the Organics Grant Program seems to contain an error. When I enter information into the "Other" column, the spreadsheet does not count those numbers in the "Total Funds" column.
    The Budget spreadsheet was corrected and has been uploaded to the Grants Management System under the Resource Documents section of the Summary tab.
  6. 6. There is one grant application per project. What is the definition of a "project"? Would multiple locations for the same or very similar operations qualify as one "project" or several?
    A project is considered to be the construction, renovation or expansion of manufacturing facilities in California using California-derived recycled-content fiber, plastic or glass. A project could include multiple locations.
  7. If an item is identified in the proposal as a proprietary process or piece of equipment, how detailed must the initial information provided be and what is the negotiating process if the reviewers deny confidential protection? Can information going to the public be reviewed by the grantee for accuracy and proprietary content?
    The information must be sufficiently detailed for staff to determine if the project is eligible. Please see Application & Guidelines for more information regarding CalRecycle’s confidentiality policy.
  8. The Application Certification section states to have the Signature Authority sign and upload the document and retain the original. There does not seem to be a signature block section on the form. Where does the Signature Authority sign?
    The signature block can be found on the second page of the Application Certification document under the “Conditions and Certification” section.
  9. Under the Financial Information requirement section, it states that this may include three (3) most recent financial balance sheets, profit/loss statements and federal tax returns, or other documentation. The applicant is a subsidiary of a national and multinational corporation. Will the Consolidated Balance Sheet from the most recent Annual Report for the company be sufficient to satisfy this requirement?
    Yes, that is acceptable.
  10. The applicant receives recycled feedstock from several large suppliers under contract and small deliveries from many (>50/day) "mom and pop" operators on a random basis (pickup trucks and car trunks). Cumulatively, the small operators contribute a significant volume of the total. Form 778-FPG does not contemplate a way to access small and random deliveries from "mom and pop" operators to complete this form for future deliveries. There is also no time period on the form specified for the quantity delivered. A form may be completed for each delivery after the grant is awarded, but there is no way to accurately calculate future volumes or frequency for small "mom and pop" operators. For the purpose of submitting the grant application, can the applicant list small suppliers and volumes for a certain time period based on historical invoices or bills of lading? This form will work for actual deliveries after the grant commences, but is difficult to complete for the many small suppliers who are not under contract to deliver specified volumes.
    This documentation is to show that the recycled-content material used by your grant project is California-generated waste that was previously landfilled; it must be submitted with the application. It also guarantees an adequate amount of feedstock will be provided to make the project feasible. This may include a signed contract, letter of intent, or other documentation which shows the feedstock will be available by the time the project is operational. Other documentation could include estimated deliveries of recycled content feedstock from “mom and pop” operators.
Last updated: September 5, 2014
Climate Change: http://www.calrecycle.ca.gov/Climate/
Contact: climatechange@calrecycle.ca.gov