Department for Border Policy and International Funds Batorego 5 Str., 02-591 Warsaw Poland
+48 22 601 42 48 +48 22 601 41 74
Norway Grants 2009-2014
ANNOUNCEMENT OF THE CALL FOR PROPOSALS
TO THE MAIN COMPETITION
IN THE FRAMEWORK OF THE NORWEGIAN FINANCIAL MECHANISM 2009–2014
OPERATIONAL PROGRAMME PL15:
Schengen Cooperation and Combating Cross–border and Organised Crime, including Trafficking and Itinerant Criminal Groups
MINISTER OF THE INTERIOR
AS THE OPERATOR OF THE
SCHENGEN COOPERATION AND COMBATING CROSS-BORDER AND ORGANISED CRIME, INCLUDING TRAFFICKING AND ITINERANT CRIMINAL GROUPS PROGRAMME IN THE FRAMEWORK OF THE NORWEGIAN FINANCIAL MECHANISM 2009–2014
ANNOUNCES THE FIRST CALL FOR PROPOSALS IN THE COMPETITION FOR THE COFINANCING OF PROJECTS
with a total amount of EUR 8,053,751 = PLN 34 010 185*
(calculated on the basis of the average monthly exchange rate published in the C series of the Official Journal of the European Union, for the 6–month period prior to the month in which the announcement was published, that is EUR 1 = PLN 4,2229)
* The amount includes a reserve to be used for the appeal procedure, due to the fact that the Programme Operator has not foreseen any additional increase of financial resources resulting from recognition of possible appeals of the applicants
The programme’s aim is to strengthen the capacity of Polish services in their fight against cross–border and organized crime, including trafficking in human beings.
- Thematic areas for the projects to be submitted to the call for proposals
- development and enhancement of structures, systems and technical equipment in order to improve the implementation of the Schengen acquis,
- improving the capacity of appropriate services to prevent and combat cross–border and organized crime, including trafficking in human beings and migration of criminal groups,
- improving cooperation between the authorities and relevant stakeholders, including non–governmental organizations, in assisting the victims of trafficking.
- Types of activities eligible for co–financing in the framework of the call for proposals:
- organization of conferences, study visits, seminars, etc.
- development of structures and systems.
- Eligible applicants:
- institutions from the public finance sector e.g. units subordinated to the Ministry of the Interior and the Ministry of Finance, such as the Police, Border Guard, Customs Service;
- non–governmental organizations* and international organizations involved in the prevention, investigation and prosecution of organized crime, ensuring public safety, prevention of human trafficking and assistance to victims of human trafficking.
NGO: a voluntary non-profit organization established as a legal entity that is non–commercial, independent of the local, regional and central government, public entities, political parties and commercial organisations. Religious institutions and political parties are not considered NGOs.
- Partnership projects
The Programme Operator encourages applicants to submit applications together with a partner from a Donor State (Norway), whose involvement is to be confirmed with a letter of intent (or a partnership agreement) attached to the application form.
The Promoter of the project (the Applicant) shall be Polish and shall be solely responsible for submitting the application form.
Partnership projects receive additional 5 points from the Programme Operator in the content–related assessment of the application. Partnerships are not obligatory.
- Bilateral Cooperation Fund
One of the tools that are to enhance partnership cooperation is known as the Bilateral Fund (BF). The Programme Operator earmarks the amount of EUR 176,471, that is PLN 745 219 from the Programme’s budget for the BF during the implementation of the Programme.
The amount of EUR 158 824 (that is 670 697PLN) of the total Programme’s budget for the BF shall be earmarked to be used by the Final Beneficiaries.
This amount shall be available for the purposes of networking, exchange, sharing and transfer of knowledge, technology, experience and best practices among the beneficiaries of the projects and entities from Norway.
The amount of EUR 17 647 (that is 74 521PLN) shall be earmarked for activities initiated by the Programme Operator in line with Annex II to the Programme Agreement. Should the amount earmarked for the implementation of the BF resources not be fully used by the Final Beneficiaries in the call for proposals, the remaining amount is to be allocated to activities initiated by the Programme Operator.
The Programme Operator does not envisage a separate call for proposals for activities financed from the BF. The application form contains sections to be completed by those applying for BF funds.
The list of activities eligible for funding under the BF should be consistent with the provisions of Article 7.7 point 1 of the Regulation on the implementation of the Norwegian Financial Mechanism (NFM) 2009–2014:
- Fees and travel costs for participation in conferences, seminars, courses, meetings and workshops;
- Travel costs for study trips;
- Travel and salary costs for visits by experts;
- Costs of conferences, seminars, courses, meetings and workshops;
- Promotional and information activities;
- External consultancy fees.
[Travel expenses in accordance with paragraph 1 include a subsistence allowance pursuant to the provisions of Article 7.3, paragraph 1 b) of the Regulation.]
The maximum amount of NFM co–financing of measures within the BF is EUR 10,000, that is PLN 42 229, with a maximum NFM financing level of 85% of the eligible project costs.
Negative assessment of the measures proposed by the Applicant in the BF is not tantamount to a negative evaluation of project measures and does not impose rejection of the application in course of the content–related evaluation . The decision about not granting the financing for project measures means a negative decision in relation to the proposed BF measures.
- Amount of funding allocated to the co–financing of projects
Total amount of allocation (NFM 2009–2014 funds) in the competition:
EUR 8,053,751, that is PLN 34 010 185, including:
- EUR 170,000, that is PLN 717 893 – the minimum value of the NFM co–financing for a single project, with a maximum NFM financing level of 85% of the eligible project costs;
- EUR 2,000, 000 that is PLN 8 445 800 – the maximum value of the NFM co–financing for a single project, with a maximum NFM financing level of 85% of the eligible project costs.
- Value of co–financing
In the case of pre–defined projects and projects selected in an open call for proposals, including projects of non–governmental organizations, funding from the programme shall not exceed 85% of total eligible project costs. The project’s remaining costs shall be borne by the beneficiaries.
- Eligible and non–eligible expenditure, in–kind contribution
Expenditure shall be eligible pursuant to general rules, in accordance with Section 7 of the Regulation on the implementation of the Norwegian Financial Mechanism 2009–2014:
In particular, the following direct costs are eligible provided that they meet the criteria set out in Article 7.2 of the Regulation:
- The cost of staff assigned to the project, comprising actual salaries plus social security charges and other statutory costs included in the remuneration, provided that this corresponds to the Project Promoter’s and project partner’s usual policy on remuneration. The corresponding salary costs of the staff of national administration are eligible to the extent that they relate to the cost of activities, which the relevant public authority would not carry out if the project concerned were not undertaken;
- Travel and subsistence allowances for staff taking part in the project, provided that they are in line with the Project Promoter’s and project partner’s usual practices on travel costs and do not exceed the relevant national scales;
- Cost of new or second hand equipment, provided that it is depreciated in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles applicable to the Project Promoter and generally accepted for items of the same kind. Only the portion of the depreciation corresponding to the duration of the project and the rate of actual use for the purposes of the project may be taken into account by the Programme Operator, except where the nature and/or the context of its use justifies different treatment by the Programme Operator. The application of such exceptions shall be regulated in the programme agreement and shall comply with the applicable rules on state aid;
- Purchase of land and real estate under the conditions set in Article 7.5 of the Regulation;
- Costs of consumables and supplies, provided that they are identifiable and assigned to the project;
- Costs entailed by other contracts awarded by a Project Promoter for the purposes of carrying out the project, provided that the awarding complies with the applicable rules on public procurement and this Regulation; and costs arising directly from requirements imposed by the project contract for each project (e.g. dissemination of information, specific evaluation of the action, audits, translations, reproduction), including the costs of any financial services (especially the cost of financial guarantees).
with the following exception:
With respect to point 3, the entire cost of purchasing new equipment is eligible within the project if the equipment forms an integral and necessary component and is essential for the achievement of the project’s results, in accordance with point 1.3 of the Annex II to the programme agreement.
Pursuant to the provisions of Article 7.4.1 (a) and (b) of the Regulation and point 1.3 of Annex II to the programme agreement, the project’s indirect costs are calculated in the following manner:
- based on actual indirect costs for those Project Promoters and project partners that have an analytical accounting system to identify their indirect costs as indicated above;
- the beneficiary and project partners may opt for a flat rate of up to 7% of total direct eligible costs, excluding direct eligible costs for subcontracting and the costs of resources made available by third parties which are not used on the premises of the Project Promoter.
The applicant is required to indicate in the application form the selected option of indirect costs accounting.
In the case of projects implemented by NGOs, in–kind contribution in the form of unpaid voluntary work can represent up to 50% of the financing required for the project. In relation to the remaining areas, own contribution is to be paid in cash, just as in the case of applicants that are not non–governmental organizations.
In case of in–kind contributions in the form of unpaid/ voluntary work, the value of work shall be calculated taking into account the following:
- the amount of time of voluntary work carried out for the project, expressed in hours and
- the hourly and daily rate for the type of work performed.
- Payment system
National budgetary units
The expenditure of public sector entities shall be subject to pre-financing.
Entities other than national budgetary units
The first instalment
The first instalment shall be paid to the beneficiary following the signing of the financing agreement, the submission by the Beneficiary of the request for the first advance payment and the provision of appropriate guarantees for the proper implementation of the above agreement by the beneficiary.
The amount of the advance payment is up to 50% of total funding. The exact amount of the first advance payment that can be requested by the beneficiary is specified in the financing agreement.
The second instalment
The second advance payment is paid to the beneficiary after at least 70% of the first advance payment, as specified in the agreement, has been spent and following the inspection of 100% of the declared expenditure.
The final payment
The final payment made to the beneficiary of the project takes place after approval of 100% of the project reporting documentation.
- Expenditure eligibility period
- The initial date of expenditure eligibility is the date of the decision to award co-financing, understood as the date on which the ranking list of projects selected for funding is published
- The final date of expenditure eligibility shall be no later than 30 April 2016.
- Project selection criteria
Project evaluation is a two–step process and consists of formal and content-related assessment. Only projects that meet all formal criteria shall be subject to content–related assessment.
Formal assessment shall be conducted by Polish experts. During the formal assessment, a 3–day supplementing procedure is to be conducted.
Formal criteria for the call for proposals:
FORMAL ASSESSMENT CRITERIA NOT SUBJECT TO THE SUPPLEMENTING PROCEDURE
- Administrative criteria
- The application was submitted to the Operator within the prescribed period
- The application was prepared on the appropriate form
- Qualification criteria
- The applicant is entitled to apply for co-financing in the framework of the Programme
- The type of project is eligible and consistent with the objectives of the Programme
- The amount of co–financing applied for is consistent with the guidelines specified in announcement of the call for proposals
- The date of the project’s completion does not exceed the prescribed deadline for expenditure eligibility date in the framework of the Programme
FORMAL ASSESSMENT CRITERIA SUBJECT TO THE SUPPLEMENTING PROCEDURE WITHIN THREE WORKING DAYS
- Two required original hard copies of the application form have been submitted (no pages are missing from the documentation)
- Two hard copies of the required attachments have been submitted (no pages are missing from the documentation)
- A CD/DVD containing the signed and initialled scanned copies of all attachments and the application has been submitted
- The paper and electronic versions of the documentation are identical
- The application form and attachments have been stamped and signed by authorised persons
- All the pages of the application form and the attachments have been initialled
- All the required pages of the documentation have been certified as a true copy by the authorised person or persons (if applicable)
- Bilateral Cooperation Fund (if applicable)
The amount of expenditure is consistent with the limit specified for the BCF in the announcement of the call for proposals.
Content–related assessment is carried out by Polish experts and each application is evaluated by two of them, and the final score for the application is calculated as the average score given by the two experts.
The final recommendation of projects to be co–financed shall be made by the Interministry Team for the Schengen Fund, the Norwegian Financial Mechanism, the European Refugee Fund, the External Borders Fund and the Return Fund.
Content–related criteria for the call of proposals:
- Institutional analysis of the Applicant/ Partner(s)
- The Applicant’s and Partner’s or Partners’ experience in the implementation of projects financed from the EU/ domestic/ Norwegian funds – max. 5 points
- The Applicant’s and Partner(s)’ staff potential in relation to the project’s planned scope – max. 3 points
- The Applicant’s and Partner’s or Partners’ premises and equipment, as well as the financial potential necessary for the implementation of the project – max. 2 points
- Project management model
- Project management structure, including management methodology and the adopted division of tasks/ competences – max. 3 points
- Qualifications of the project staff necessary for the implementation of the project and the experience of persons in charge of the project gained in similar ventures – max. 2 points
- The necessity of implementing the project/ Its impact on the achievement of the Operational Programme’s outcomes and results
- Justification of the implementation of the project (project’s environment, impact on target groups and the Applicant/ Partner’s environment) – max. 7 points
- Project’s impact on the achievement of the Programme’s objectives (together with the assessment of risks related to the failure to achieve the specified objectives) – max. 7 points
- Project’s impact and links with the implementation of domestic and European strategies – max. 2 points
- Selection of activities and target groups in relations to the efficient accomplishment of the project’s objectives – max. 3 points
- The Applicant’s readiness to conduct the project – max. 2 points
- The multiplier effect and long-term impact of the measures implemented in the project – max. 2 points
- Relevance to horizontal policies (sustainable development, equal opportunities, information society) – max. 2 points
- Assessment of the project’s budget, including content–related and project management expenses
- Logical connections between the expenses and the project’s measures – max. 3 points
- Adequacy of the financial outlays in relation to the project’s outcomes – max. 3 points
- Validity (inevitability) of subsequent expenses within the project – max. 4 points
- Consistency of expenses with the eligibility criteria – max. 5 points
- Accuracy and reasonableness of expenses/ rates in the project – max. 5 points
- Proportionality of management costs in relation to the remaining costs of project implementation – max. 3 points
- Appropriate accounting of the drafted budget (including the correct classification of expenses within the project) – max. 2 points
- Project implementation schedule
- The schedule’s consistency with project description, the suggested measures and the indicated timeframe of the project - max. 2 points
- Measures indicated in the schedule are feasible within the indicated timeframe – max. 3 points
- Adequate selection of indicators in relations to the presented actions and the project’s planned outcomes – max. 3 points
- Measurability of indicators – max. 4 points
- Verification and monitoring methods in relations to project indicators – max. 3 points
- Risk analysis
- Accuracy of the identified risks and the correctness of the evaluation of their occurrence in relations to the planned project measures – max. 3 points
- Adequacy of the suggested methods used for minimizing identified risk – max. 2 points
- Information and promotion
- Adequacy and diversity of the proposed promotional activities in relation to the nature and scope of the project – max. 4 points
- Relevance of the selected target group at whom promotional activities are aimed and of promotional tools to be used – max. 2 points
- Scope of promotional activities (both in Poland and in Donor States) – max. 2 points
- Compatibility between the suggested promotional activities and methods of their implementation with the Donors’ guidelines for the information and promotion of projects financed from the NFM – max. 2 points
- Partnership with entities from Donor States
- In the case of a lack of letter of intent or a partnership agreement confirming the existence of a partnership, the Applicant receives 0 points
- Submitting a letter of intent or a partnership agreement specifying the scope of cooperation and the obligations of the parties (including financial obligations) related to the implementation of the project – 5 points (zero–one assessment)
- Priority shall be given to projects focusing on measures other than infrastructure investments or equipment purchases.
- Projects that have scored a minimum of 60% of points in the content–related assessment (including minimum 50% of points in categories 3 and 4) shall be placed on the ranking list.
- Projects that have not received co–financing due to the insufficient amount of available funds shall placed on a reserve list.
- Formal and content–related assessment forms outlining selection criteria are included in the Annex to the announcement.
- Legal remedies available to applicants
In the case of both formal and content–related assessment, the applicant shall have the right to appeal against the decision to two instances. The first instance is the Programme Operator and the second is the National Contact Point.
The appeal procedure in the second instance shall consist in inspecting the assessment of the project conducted by the Programme Operator only in terms of its compliance with the regulations in force and the procedure of project assessment applied by the Programme Operator.
The decision of the National Contact Point cannot be appealed against.
Decisions of the Interministry Team for the Schengen Fund, the Norwegian Financial Mechanism, the European Refugee Fund, the External Borders Fund and the Return Fund shall not be appealed against.
- Date, place and manner of the submission of applications for the co–financing of projects
The call for proposals shall be carried out between 30 September 2013 and 8 January 2013, time: 16.00.
Two original hard copies of proposals in the Polish language, along with two hard copies of the attachments (all documents must be signed and initialled on each page, as well as certified as a true copy of the original if applicable) and scans of all the documents on a CD/ DVD should be submitted in an envelope or a package, by mail, by courier (in these cases, date as postmarked or a proof of shipment), or in person to the Ministry of the Interior at the following address:
Ministerstwo Spraw Wewnętrznych
Departament Współpracy Międzynarodowej i Funduszy Europejskich
ul. Batorego 5
(Ministry of the Interior, Department for International Cooperation and European Funds)
The following should be written on the envelope or package containing complete application documentation:
- Wniosek o dofinansowanie projektu w ramach Programu
Współpraca w obszarze Schengen oraz walka z przestępczością transgraniczną i zorganizowaną, w tym przeciwdziałanie handlowi ludźmi oraz migracjom grup przestępczychw ramach Norweskiego Mechanizmu Finansowego 2009–2014 (Application for co–financing for a project under the
Schengen Cooperation and Combating Cross–border and Organised Crime, including Trafficking and Itinerant Criminal GroupsProgramme in the Norwegian Financial Mechanism 2009–2014)
- Full name of the Applicant
- Applicant's address
- Title of the project
The deadline for the application documentation shipped via mail to reach the address above shall not exceed 10 calendar days counting from the next day after the last day of the call for proposal.
Additional information on the call for proposals shall be provided in writing.
The Programme Operator shall provide the applicant with information regarding the submitted applications by fax or e–mail – according to contact data provided in the application. The deadline for letters is counted from the date of notifying the applicant by fax (calculated from the date of fax message confirmation), or the date of sending an electronic message against confirmation of receipt.
The Programme Operator shall provide a response to the Applicant’s queries within 5 working days.
Queries should be sent to the following email address: firstname.lastname@example.org