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§ 1249. Assistance for small shipyards and maritime communities

(a) Establishment of program
Subject to the availability of appropriations, the Administrator of the Maritime Administration shall establish a program to provide assistance to State and local governments—
(1) to provide assistance in the form of grants, loans, and loan guarantees to small shipyards for capital improvements; and
(2) for maritime training programs in communities whose economies are substantially related to the maritime industry.
(b) Awards
In providing assistance under the program, the Administrator shall—
(1) take into account—
(A) the economic circumstances and conditions of maritime communities; and
(B) the local, State, and regional economy in which the communities are located; and
(2) strongly encourage State, local, and regional efforts to promote economic development and training that will enhance the economic viability of and quality of life in maritime communities.
(c) Use of funds
Assistance provided under this section may be used—
(1) to make capital and related improvements in small shipyards located in or near maritime communities;
(2) to encourage, assist in, or provide training for residents of maritime communities that will enhance the economic viability of those communities; and
(3) for such other purposes as the Administrator determines to be consistent with and supplemental to such activities.
(d) Prohibited uses
Grants awarded under this section may not be used to construct buildings or other physical facilities or to acquire land unless such use is specifically approved by the Administrator in support of subsection (c)(3) of this section.
(e) Matching requirements
(1) Federal funding
Except as provided in paragraph (2), Federal funds for any eligible project under this section shall not exceed 75 percent of the total cost of such project.
(2) Exceptions
(A) Small projects
Paragraph (1) shall not apply to grants under this section for stand alone projects costing not more than $25,000. The amount under this subparagraph shall be indexed to the consumer price index and modified each fiscal year after the annual publication of the consumer price index.
(B) Reduction in matching requirement
If the Administrator determines that a proposed project merits support and cannot be undertaken without a higher percentage of Federal financial assistance, the Administrator may award a grant for such project with a lesser matching requirement than is described in paragraph (1).
(f) Application
(1) In general
The Administrator shall determine who, as an eligible applicant, may submit an application, at such time, in such form, and containing such information and assurances as the Administrator may require.
(2) Minimum standards for payment or reimbursement
Each application submitted under paragraph (1) shall include—
(A) a comprehensive description of—
(i) the need for the project;
(ii) the methodology for implementing the project; and
(iii) any existing programs or arrangements that can be used to supplement or leverage assistance under the program.
(3) Procedural safeguards
The Administrator, in consultation with the Office of the Inspector General, shall issue guidelines to establish appropriate accounting, reporting, and review procedures to ensure that—
(A) grant funds are used for the purposes for which they were made available;
(B) grantees have properly accounted for all expenditures of grant funds; and
(C) grant funds not used for such purposes and amounts not obligated or expended are returned.
(4) Project approval required
The Administrator may not award a grant under this section unless the Administrator determines that—
(A) sufficient funding is available to meet the matching requirements of subsection (e) of this section;
(B) the project will be completed without unreasonable delay; and
(C) the recipient has authority to carry out the proposed project.
(g) Audits and examinations
All grantees under this section shall maintain such records as the Administrator may require and make such records available for review and audit by the Administrator.
(h) Small shipyard defined
In this section, the term “small shipyard” means a shipyard that—
(1) is a small business concern (within the meaning of section 632 of title 15); and
(2) does not have more than 600 employees.
(i) Authorization of appropriations
There are authorized to be appropriated to the Administrator of the Maritime Administration for each of fiscal years 2006 through 2010 to carry out this section—
(1) $5,000,000 for training grants; and
(2) $25,000,000 for capital and related improvement grants.
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