The DNR Grants Unit at the 2013 Environmental Initiative Awards
Ceremony: From left to right: Pat Donnell, Amanda Graeber, Jason
The Grants Unit would like to extend a thank you to all
pass-through appropriation recipients for providing feedback in our
recent survey. The survey is an important evaluation tool that helps the
Grants Unit determine what grant management processes are going well
and what areas need improvement. Here are a few highlights from the
- Our response rate went from 59% last summer to 71.6% this summer.
- 95.8% of OHF and ENRTF grant recipients are satisfied or very satisfied
with the ability of the DNR Grants Specialists to resolve problems (70.6% for
- 95.7% are satisfied or very satisfied with the overall frequency of
- 90.5% are satisfied or very satisfied with overall customer service (78.8%
- 88% are satisfied or very satisfied with the consistent manner in which
reimbursement requests were processed (54.3% for FY12)
84% are satisfied or very satisfied with the
timely manner in which reimbursement requests were processed (54.3% for FY12)
- 83.4% are satisfied or very satisfied with the guidance provided by the
reimbursement manual (65.7% for FY12)
course, there is always room for improvement and the DNR Grants Unit is
committed to continuous evaluation and improvement. Some respondents had the
Improve user-friendliness of
Require less detail for expense
DNR Grants Unit is addressing the concerns noted by grantees in the following
a grant monitoring policy that reduces the amount of paperwork that must be
submitted with each request while still ensuring necessary controls through
desk or site visits;
reimbursement request spreadsheets with accurate, embedded formulas (and tips
on spreadsheet use at the annual reimbursement training);
the amount of back-up documentation (receipts, invoices, etc.) required to be
submitted with reimbursement requests in tandem with the new grant monitoring
also collaborating with Accounts Payable staff in order to ensure
reimbursements are paid as quickly as AP staffing levels allow and continuing
to notify appropriation recipients via email when their reimbursement requests
are received, processed, and taken to Accounts Payable.
reminders and thoughts based on other survey comments:
welcome suggestions for additions to the website and/or newsletter.
is difficult to compare the amount of documentation required by different grant
programs and funders. As you know, each grant program and funder is unique and
has different requirements and circumstances.
requests can be submitted as often as you like. You do not have to submit them
only quarterly, semi-annually, or annually.
DNR Grants Unit will continue to investigate best practices for grant
management across the state and nation and implement them as grant fund
requirements and risk management allow to ensure that grant allocations both
achieve their intended purpose and follow state statutes. Our goal continues to
be to assist OHF and ENRTF recipients to achieve the intended habitat outcomes
in compliance with Minnesota law to the benefit of our customers, partners, and
the citizens of Minnesota.
The Grants Unit held its 2nd annual Reimbursement Manual
Training session on September 18th. 38 pass-through appropriation
recipients attended this webinar training class compared to 25 in 2012. If you were unable to
attend the webinar, please visit our training page on our grants website
to see a copy of the power point presentation.
If your organization plans to purchase land at the very end of the calendar year, please notify the Grants Unit well in advance of your closing date so we will be able to have a staff member assist you during the holiday season.