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National School Lunch Program (NSLP) Equipment Assistance Grant

Grants to Illinois School Food Authorities to
Upgrade School Food Service Equipment

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE)

Deadline Date:

12/31/18 Noon Receipt


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Grants ranging from $1,000 to $50,000 to Illinois School Food Authorities (SFAs) for the purchase, renovation, and replacement of school food service equipment in public and private schools throughout the State. Funding is intended to support the procurement and upgrade of equipment that enhances the quality and safety of school meals, promotes energy efficiency of food service operations, and increases participation in school meal programs at high-need schools.

The Illinois 2019 NSLP Equipment Assistance Grant will grant funding to eligible SFAs (School Food Authorities) to assist in purchasing, renovating, or replacing equipment needed to serve healthier school meals, improve food safety, and expand access to school meals. The program awards funds to School Food Authorities that have schools participating in the National School Lunch Program. The funds are used to reimburse preapproved purchases and/or renovation of equipment used for the improvement of school meal programs. Students will gain increased access to better quality, healthier school meals.

The term equipment, for purposes of this program, is defined by federal regulation as tangible personal property having a useful life of more than one year and a per-unit acquisition cost that equals or exceeds the lesser of the capitalization level established by the non-federal entity for financial statement purposes, or $5,000. For this year only, Congress has specified the grants issued under this funding opportunity are for purchase of equipment with a value of greater than $1,000.

Examples of equipment include, but are not limited to, refrigeration (reach-in or walk-in, if efficiently sized), preparation equipment (convection oven, combination oven, steamer, tilt skillet, food processor), serving line (effective flow and components, including merchandising), holding cabinet, dishwasher, shelving, salad bar, food transport carts, carriers, and point-of-sale system. Funds may only be used for equipment specified in the award letter unless an amendment is approved prior.

When purchasing equipment through this grant program, grant recipients must follow all applicable local, state, and federal procurement requirements. (See Equipment Procurement Regulations listed in Supporting Documents below.)

Selection Criteria:

1. Priority Points

- Free and Reduced-Price Eligibility Percentage (25)
- Schools that have not previously received a grant (25)
- Schools that participate in the School Breakfast Program (10)

2. Specific Criteria

- Section 1: Applicant demonstrates high-need for equipment requests (10)
- Section 2: Applicant demonstrates consideration of how the grant award will provide meaningful impacts on nutrition and quality of school meals (10)
- Section 3: Applicant demonstrates an understanding of Smarter Lunchroom strategies and commits to adopting lunchroom changes that provide more convenience and appeal to the student population (10)
- Section 4: Applicant demonstrates capacity to execute the grant project in accordance with grant requirements (10)

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 143827

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Estimated Size of Grant:

Grant awards will range from a minimum of $1,000 to a maximum of $50,000 per SFA.

Term of Contract:

The grant period will begin no sooner than April 1, 2019, and will extend from the execution date of the grant until September 30, 2020.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Illinois School Food Authorities (SFAs) are eligible to apply on behalf of their school sites that participate in the National School Lunch Program. An SFA is defined as a governing body that is responsible for the administration of one or more schools/sites and has the legal authority to operate the NSLP therein. Any sponsors participating in the National School Lunch Program, including private schools, are eligible to apply for funding.

All SFAs with NSLP schools are eligible to apply, but priority will be given to:

- High-need schools (i.e., schools in underserved areas, schools with limited access to other resources, and age of food service equipment) where 50 percent or more of the enrolled students are eligible for free or reduced-price meals;
- Schools that have not previously received a NSLP Equipment Assistance Grant; and
- Schools also participating in the school breakfast program.

Unallowable costs include, but are not limited to:

- Remodeling of the food service area or cafeteria,
- Facility renovation or construction costs (building improvements),
- Administrative expenses,
- Indirect costs, and/or
- Set-asides for auditing services

Pre-Application Information:

Application Period: November 1, 2018 through December 31, 2018 at noon.‚Äč

Proposals can be submitted electronically through the ISBE Attachment Manager, mailed, or hand-delivered to the Springfield office by no later than noon on Monday, December 31, 2018. Applicants must ensure that the NOFO/RFP response is in ISBE offices no later than noon on that date.

Applicants are advised to check the site before submitting a proposal.

It is anticipated that successful applicants will receive a notice of potential award from the State Superintendent via email or U.S. Postal Service within approximately 90 days after the application deadline. Awardees will receive additional information from the grant manager approximately two weeks later via email or U.S. Postal Service. This information will include steps for completing required risk assessment(s) and a detailed award letter with award amount.

Applicants are required to complete pre-qualification requirements before applying for any FY 2019 grant. This includes completion of the Grantee Registration and Pre-qualification process through the Illinois GATA Web Portal. (Pre-qualification includes having a valid DUNS number and current account.) Submissions by applicants who are not pre-qualified are not eligible to be considered for a grant award.

SFAs can apply for more than one school under their authority.

SFAs can still apply in 2019 for schools that have been previously awarded a NSLP Equipment Assistance Grant, or that received a 2018 NSLP Equipment Assistance Grant which is still in its performance period. However, a school that has previously received one of these grants will not receive the 25 priority points for this category on their score (see Selection Criteria in Description above).

ISBE provides funding awarded under the NSLP Equipment Assistance Grant Program on a reimbursement basis.

For more information, contact Emily Durbin.

For further information about registration and pre-qualification:

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

1. To submit an application electronically through the Attachment Manager:
Choose the name of the grant administrator [Emily Durbin] from the drop down menu in Receiver Information.

2. To submit by mail:

Illinois State Board of Education
Attn: Emily Durbin
100 North First Street (W-270)
Springfield, IL 62777-0001
(It is advised to use certified mail with guaranteed delivery date and a return receipt requested.)

3. To submit by hand-delivery, mark the envelope or folder containing the proposal with the following information and deliver to the Reception Area indicated below:

ISBE Nutrition Division (W-270)
Attn: Emily Durbin
2019 NSLP Equipment Assistance Grant RFP

Reception Area
First Floor
Alzina Building
100 North First Street

For more information, contact:

Emily Durbin
217-782-2491 or 800-545-7892

Mark R. Haller, Division Administrator
(217) 782-2491; 800-545-7892 (toll free in Illinois)
Fax (217) 524-6124

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Illinois