Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance::Administration of federal assistance in the United States


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Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance

The Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) logo.
The task of organizing and categorizing federal assistance programs into a uniform and standardized system has been assigned to the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) since 1984.<ref name="cfda_intro2">2006 CFDA; “Introduction And How To Use This Catalog”; pg. I, par. 2</ref> The GSA achieves these tasks by maintaining the Federal assistance information database, which incorporates all federal agency programs that provide grants and awards to recipients. The Office of Management and Budget assists the GSA in maintaining the database by serving as an intermediary agent between the Federal agencies and GSA.{{ safesubst:#invoke:Unsubst||date=__DATE__ |$B=

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In addition to these tasks, the Federal Program Information Act requires the GSA to provide federal assistance information to the general public through the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA), a free register which incorporates both federal agency and federal program information. This register acts both as a directory and as a dictionary, facilitating both recipients and the general public in finding information of a specific program.

Currently, programs in the Catalog are being classified by the GSA into 15 types of assistance, which are then sub-classified into seven financial types of assistance and eight non-financial types of assistance:<ref name="cfda"/>

Financial type assistance

  • Formula Grants (A) – Includes allocations of money to States or their subdivisions in accordance with distribution formulas prescribed by law or administrative regulation, for activities of a continuing nature not confined to a specific project. Examples of this type of assistance include transportation and infrastructure grants designated by Congress, such as the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG).<ref name="cfda"/>
  • Project Grants (B) – Includes funding of specific projects for fixed or known periods. Project grants can include fellowships, scholarships, research grants, training grants, traineeships, experimental and demonstration grants, evaluation grants, planning grants, technical assistance grants, survey grants, and construction grants.<ref name="cfda"/>
  • Direct Payments for Specified Use (C) – Includes financial assistance from the Federal government provided directly to individuals, private firms, and other private institutions to encourage or subsidize a particular activity by conditioning the receipt of the assistance on a particular performance by the recipient. One example of this type of assistance is the Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher program.<ref name="cfda"/>
  • Direct Payments with Unrestricted Use (D) – Includes financial assistance from the Federal government provided directly to beneficiaries who satisfy Federal eligibility requirements with no restrictions being imposed on the recipient as to how the money is spent. Included are payments under retirement, pension, and compensatory programs.<ref name="cfda"/>
  • Direct Loans (E) – Includes financial assistance provided through the lending of Federal monies for a specific period of time, with a reasonable expectation of repayment, of which may or may not require the payment of interest.<ref name="cfda"/>
  • Guaranteed/Insured Loans (F) – Includes programs in which the Federal government makes an arrangement to indemnify a lender against part or all of any defaults by those responsible for repayment of loans.<ref name="cfda"/>
  • Insurance (G)– Includes financial assistance provided to assure reimbursement for losses sustained under specified conditions. Coverage may be provided directly by the Federal government or through private companies, and may or may not involve the payment of premiums.<ref name="cfda"/>

Non-financial type assistance

  • Sale, Exchange, or Donation of Property and Goods (H) – Includes programs which provide for the sale, exchange, or donation of Federal real property, personal property, commodities, and other goods including land, buildings, equipment, food and drugs.<ref name="cfda"/>
  • Use of Property, Facilities, and Equipment (I) – Includes programs which provide for the loan of, use of, or access to Federal facilities or property wherein the federally owned facilities or property do not remain in the possession of the recipient of the assistance.<ref name="cfda"/>
  • Provision of Specialized Services (J) – Includes programs that provide Federal personnel directly to perform certain tasks for the benefit of communities or individuals. These services may be performed in conjunction with non-federal personnel, but they involve more than consultation, advice, or counseling. Examples include the legal representation provided by the “Protection of Voting Rights” and the 'Civil Rights of Institutionalized Persons" programs.<ref name="cfda"/>
  • Advisory Services and Counseling (K) – Includes programs which provide Federal specialists to consult, advise, or counsel communities or individuals to include conferences, workshops, or personal contacts.<ref name="cfda"/>
  • Dissemination of Technical Information (L) – Includes programs that provide for the publication and distribution of information or data of a specialized or technical nature frequently through clearinghouses or libraries.<ref name="cfda"/>
  • Training (M)– Includes programs that provide instructional activities conducted directly by a Federal agency for individuals not employed by the Federal government.<ref name="cfda"/>
  • Investigation of Complaints (N) – Includes federal administrative agency activities that are initiated in response to requests to examine or investigate violations of Federal statutes, policies, or procedures.<ref name="cfda"/>
  • Federal Employment (O) – Includes programs that reflect the Government-wide responsibilities of the Office of Personnel Management in the recruitment and hiring of Federal civilian agency personnel.<ref name="cfda"/>

CFDA number

In order to assist in locating a federal program, the General Services Administration assigns a two-digit number unique to each federal agency authorized to provide assistance, and a three digit number to each federal assistance program within that agency. With these designations, a federal assistance program is identified by the combination of both numbers which in turn creates a five digit number divided by a dot (55.555).<ref name="cfda3"/> The two digit numbers assigned to federal agencies are:

Administration of federal assistance in the United States sections
Intro  Definition  Federal assistance programs  Recipients  Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance  Monitoring activities  See also  Notes  References  Further reading  External links  

Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance
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