45 CFR 1303.21 - Procedures for appeal by current or prospective delegate agencies to the responsible HHS official from denials by grantees of an application or failure to act on an application.
(a) Any current or prospective delegate agency that is dissatisfied with the decision of a grantee rendered under § 1303.20 may appeal to the responsible HHS official whose decision is final and not appealable to the Commissioner, ACYF. Such an appeal must be in writing and it must fully set forth the grounds for the appeal and be accompanied by all documentation that the current or prospective delegate agency believes is relevant and supportive of this position, including all written material or documentation submitted to the grantee under the procedures set forth in § 1303.20, as well as a copy of any decision rendered by the grantee. A copy of the appeal and all material filed with the responsible HHS official must be simultaneously served on the grantee.
(b) In providing the information required by paragraph (a) of this section, delegate agencies must set forth:
(1) Whether, when and how the grantee advised the delegate agency of alleged defects and deficiencies in the delegate agency's application or in the operation of its program prior to the grantee's rejection or termination notice;
(2) Whether the grantee provided the delegate agency reasonable opportunity to correct the defects and deficiencies, the details of the opportunity that was given and whether or not the grantee provided or provided for technical advice, consultation, or assistance to the current delegate agency concerning the correction of the defects and deficiencies;
(3) What steps or measures, if any, were undertaken by the delegate agency to correct any defects or deficiencies;
(7) Any other facts and circumstances which the delegate agency believes supports its appeal.
(d) In the case of an appeal by a delegate agency, the grantee must submit a written statement to the responsible HHS official responding to the items specified in paragraph (b) of this section. The grantee must include information that explains why it acted properly in arriving at its decision or in failing to act, and any other facts and circumstances which the grantee believes supports its position.
(1) The responsible HHS official may meet informally with the current or prospective delegate agency if such official determines that such a meeting would be beneficial to the proper resolution of the appeal. Such meetings may be conducted by conference call.
(2) An informal meeting must be requested by the current or prospective delegate agency at the time of the appeal. In addition, the grantee may request an informal meeting with the responsible HHS official. If none of the parties requests an informal meeting, the responsible HHS official may hold such a meeting if he or she believes it would be beneficial for a proper resolution of the dispute. Both the grantee and the current or prospective delegate agency may attend any informal meeting concerning the appeal. If a party wishes to oppose a request for a meeting it must serve its opposition on the responsible HHS official and any other party within five work days of its receipt of the request.
(f) A grantee's response to appeals by current or prospective delegate agencies must be submitted to the responsible HHS official within ten work days of receipt of the materials served on it by the current or prospective delegate agency in accordance with paragraph (a) of this section. The grantee must serve a copy of its response on the current or prospective delegate agency.
(g) The responsible HHS official shall notify the current or prospective delegate agency and the grantee whether or not an informal meeting will be held. If an informal meeting is held, it must be held within ten work days after the notice by the responsible HHS official is mailed. The responsible HHS official must designate either the Regional Office or the place where the current or prospective delegate agency or grantee is located for holding the informal meeting.
(h) If an informal meeting is not held, each party shall have an opportunity to reply in writing to the written statement submitted by the other party. The written reply must be submitted to the responsible HHS official within five work days after the notification required by paragraph (g) of this section. If a meeting is not to be held, notice of that fact shall be served on the parties within five work days of the receipt of a timely response to such a request or the expiration of the time for submitting a response to such a request.
(i) In deciding an appeal under this section, the responsible HHS official will arrive at his or her decision by considering:
(1) The material submitted in writing and the information presented at any informal meeting;
(2) The application of the current or prospective delegate agency;
(3) His or her knowledge of the grantee's program as well as any evaluations of his or her staff about the grantee's program and current or prospective delegate agency's application and prior performance; and
(4) Any other evidence deemed relevant by the responsible HHS official.