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Portland Bureau of Transportation

Phone: 503-823-5185

Fax: 503-823-7576

1120 SW Fifth Ave, Suite 800, Portland, OR 97204

More Contact Info

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How do I submit the application/proposal?

Q: How do individual groups find a 501 (3)(c) non-profit partner for their projects?

Q: What if I’m not a nonprofit yet, but I’m currently applying for that status?

Q: Are there any non-profits that have expressed interest in partnering on projects?

Q: Can an organization serve as the fiscal agent for more than one project?

Q: Can I pass the application on to interested community members?

Q: Does my personal neighborhood project qualify for grant funding?

Q: Would PBOT fund a project that would take up street space?

Q: How many neighbors would we need to get on board? What sort of documentation is needed to demonstrate neighborhood support?

Q: Can a group of individuals of a neighborhood apply for the grant?

Q: Would we need to get other transportation advocacy groups support?

Q: Does my project need to partner with other bureaus and if so, would I consult them as part of the project?

Q: My community-based organizations applied to the Metro Community Placemaking grant, can we still apply the PBOT Portland in the Streets Community Grant?

Q: In a neighborhood with multiple projects, is it an advantage to have those multiple projects under one nonprofit or is it better to separate the projects? Should the neighborhood association put multiple projects under one application?

Q: Do I have to have all of the technical answers outlined in my proposal? For example, I want to suggest a new urban trail but I don’t know how to build one.

Q: Can you submit multiple applications?

Q: I couldn’t attend any of the  workshops but I have more questions than what are answered here. What do I do?

Q: Would a visioning or planning phase fit well with this grant?

Q: Will the amount of money a group asks for affect their changes?

Q: How can I learn more about the Placemaking and Urban Trail opportunities and resources?

Q: If we have a project that is several blocks long, should we apply for a larger budget that covers the entire length or a smaller amount for a pilot project? For example, if we apply for $20,000 could we be awarded part of that amount to do a smaller section?

Q: The budget is a big part of the application. How to set an hourly value an PBOT staff and volunteers?

Q: For long-term maintenance, is there a way to fund maintenance beyond December 2018?

Q: Our neighborhood has worked with PBOT before and has developed and approved a plan. Can we apply for a grant for a project outlined in an approved plan?  

Q: What will the grant awardee documentation look like?

Q: I’ve heard that for placemaking street sign toppers there is a charge from the City to put those on. Would that cost be included in the budget?

Q: Can the grant pay for an artist?

Q: Can any of the projects take place on private property?

Q: Will PBOT be able to broker relationships with other jurisdictions to facilitate a project?

Q: Can one organization/group submit two separate applications?

Q: When will the awarded funds be available?

Q: How can applicants find out about PBOT’s programs and priorities?

Q: Any ideas/resources to involve houseless neighbors?

Q: Will this grant be awarded annually?

Q: Would a visioning or planning phase fit well with this grant?

Q: Will the amount of money a group asks for affect their changes?

Q: Will PBOT offer advice about permit costs in order to help applicants put together their budgets?

Q: Can the grant money be used for sub-grants to other organizations?

Q: Would this grant support a project in a park?

Q: Can you spend money on community engagement as part of the process?

Q: Can this grant be used to pay for staff time in support of the project?***

Q: How do you track your receipts? 

Q: Do permits need to be secured when submitting application?

Q: Does a project need to be limited to one specific neighborhood?

Q: Partner agencies at PBOT such as TriMet are aware this program or merged with process afterwards? Agencies asked to participate. 

Q: Do 501 (3) (6) organizations meet the non-profit requirement of the grant?

Q: Is it ok if we are focused only on one group, rather than spreading our project to all the under-represented groups?

Q: Who is on the selection committee?

Q: Can I received an application by mail?

 


 

Q: How do I submit the application/proposal?

  • A: First, download the application here: https://www.portlandoregon.gov/transportation/article/644566. Make sure you pay attention to the application checklist - so you don’t forget anything. After you have everything ready to go, send it to us one of these three ways before 5:00 PM on Thursday, August 31, 2017:

    • Email: ​pbotcommunitygrant@portlandoregon.gov and send a PDF of the application and any extra attachments (beyond the 8 page limit)

    • Drop off in person or send via postal mailing: to Portland Bureau of Transportation 
      Attn: John Brady, Communications and Public Involvement 
      1120 SW 5th Ave., Suite 800 
      Portland, OR 97204

      Suite 800 is located on the 8th Floor of the Portland Building, on the Yellow/Green/Orange MAX lines. The office is open between 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM.

      Note: Applications mailed through U.S. Postal Service must also be received by deadline 5:00 PM on Thursday, August 31, 2017.

Q: How do individual groups find a 501 (3)(c) non-profit partner for their projects?

  • A: For those new to this process, this program wants to promote the opportunity for you to work with your neighbors and local organizations and businesses. Reach out to them directly by setting up a meeting or giving them a call to start the conversation on developing a partnership.

  • This grant will encourage groups to partner with 501(c)(3) non profit organizations.  To check if the organization is a 501(c)(3) non profit and in good standing, please visit the Oregon DOJ (https://justice.oregon.gov/Charities) and the Business Registry Database (http://egov.sos.state.or.us/br/pkg_web_name_srch_inq.login). Quick overview of good standing:

    • Non-discrimination policy statement: Participating charity should have in place a policy and procedure of non-discrimination

    • Character and extent of charitable work being performed as well as location where the work is being done

    • A copy of the most recent financial report or statement certified by an independent Public Accountant

    • Registration with the Attorney General of Oregon as a Charitable organization and the Oregon Secretary of State

    • A copy of IRS 501 C3 status of umbrella organizations

 

Q: What if I’m not a nonprofit yet, but I’m currently applying for that status?

  • A: Since it can take several months to get this status we suggest teaming with an existing nonprofit for the application.

 

Q: Are there any non-profits that have expressed interest in partnering on projects?

  • A: Idealist.com is a good start to find nonprofits. We have not  heard from any specific nonprofits interested in working on this grant. Idealist.com is a great resource for researching non-profits. Neighborhood associations would be another option to try. Given this grant’s emphasis on equity, we would also encourage applicants to explore partnerships with organizations that work with underserved populations.

 

Q: Can an organization serve as the fiscal agent for more than one project?

  • A: Yes. The projects should be submitted as separate applications.

Q: Can I pass the application on to interested community members?

  • A: Yes, please share this opportunity with community-based organizations and neighbors.

Q: Does my personal neighborhood project qualify for grant funding?

  • A: To be eligible, projects and/or applicants must be:

    • be located within and benefit City of Portland community members.

    • address one or more of the goals or priorities outlined in the program overview.

    • applicant must have 501(c)(3) nonprofit status from the IRS or be fiscally sponsored by a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.

  • If your project meets those three requirements, you should apply for the grant. However, please note that the grant funds (if your project is awarded) cannot go toward paying for the costs of writing the application, direct social/emergency services, ongoing organizational support (rent/utilities), grants or scholarships to specific individuals, or paying off existing debt/loans. Please see the full list of items that will be ineligible for receiving grant funds: https://www.portlandoregon.gov/transportation/article/644507

 

Q: Would PBOT fund a project that would take up street space?

  • A: The City of Portland is open to hearing a variety of ideas for using the right of way in different ways, including temporary and permanent use.

 

Q: How many neighbors would we need to get on board? What sort of documentation is needed to demonstrate neighborhood support?

  • A: It’s great to show community support for your proposal. While more is better, we recommend gathering 2 - 5 signed letters of support from local neighbors. If your proposal supports a specific community, it would make sense to get a statement of support from them.   

 

Q: Can a group of individuals of a neighborhood apply for the grant?

  • A: Yes, community-based organizations and neighbors throughout the City of Portland can apply for the grant. Community-based organizations must have 501(c)(3) nonprofit status from the IRS or be fiscally sponsored by a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.  Remember that two of the main goals for this grant program are to invest in small-scale, community driven projects focused on transportation safety, equity, innovation and placemaking, as well as engaging communities historically underrepresented in and underserved by PBOT programming, including but not limited to communities of color, immigrant and refugee communities, low-income individuals and families, youth, people with disabilities and lesbian, gay, bi, transgender people.

 

Q: Would we need to get other transportation advocacy groups support?

  • A: Applicants may include support statements from partnering organizations, references to supporting research, transportation advocacy groups that support your project.

 

Q: Does my project need to partner with other bureaus and if so, would I consult them as part of the project?

  • A: That would be driven on a project to project basis but we encourage collaboration with community groups and bureaus. However, you don’t need to know all the details about who or when to partner with these groups (particularly with other government agencies) because we can review that in the technical assistance phase.

 

Q: My community-based organizations applied to the Metro Community Placemaking grant, can we still apply the PBOT Portland in the Streets Community Grant?

  • A: Yes. 

Q: In a neighborhood with multiple projects, is it an advantage to have those multiple projects under one nonprofit or is it better to separate the projects? Should the neighborhood association put multiple projects under one application?

  • A: It’s not an advantage to combine projects but it’s important to remember that each application can only apply up to $20,000, so that may determine how you group projects.

 

Q: Do I have to have all of the technical answers outlined in my proposal? For example, I want to suggest a new urban trail but I don’t know how to build one.

  • A: No, the workshop meeting will provide the opportunity to complete the application and if awarded the grant, technical questions can be answered through the process of the project. Another option would be to partner with a  501(c)(3) nonprofit organization who has experience in urban trails projects.

 

Q: Can you submit multiple applications?

  • A: Yes, you want to make sure each proposal is specific and we recommend explaining why you’ve submitted multiple applications in the description.

 

Q: I couldn’t attend any of the  workshops but I have more questions than what are answered here. What do I do?

 

Q: Would a visioning or planning phase fit well with this grant?

  • A: No. We are looking for projects that will have a more immediate impact, so visioning and planning aren’t the best activities for this program.

 

Q: Will the amount of money a group asks for affect their changes?

  • A: As long as projects stay within the required grant amounts, the amount of money a group asks for won’t have any influence on a group’s chances. Projects will be judged by their quality and how well they meet the goals of the grant program.

 

Q: How can I learn more about the Placemaking and Urban Trail opportunities and resources?

 

Q: If we have a project that is several blocks long, should we apply for a larger budget that covers the entire length or a smaller amount for a pilot project? For example, if we apply for $20,000 could we be awarded part of that amount to do a smaller section?

  • A: After awarding we’ll go through a technical review and analysis to help you fine tune the budget, but it’s important to apply for the full amount you need to get the project done. During the application review we won’t know if your project can be broken down into a smaller/pilot size or not – so you need to be clear about your needs in the application.

 

Q: The budget is a big part of the application. How to set an hourly value an PBOT staff and volunteers?

  • A: You don’t need to estimate PBOT staff time in your budget, since that will be absorbed by the City. It might be hard to estimate in-kind donations of volunteers’ time but if you can find out how much someone would normally charge to do the work you can include that as an estimate. If you have in-kind donations, please include those in the budget. You can also reach out to experts (nonprofit or for profit groups) that might be willing to donate time to help you during the application phase or later during the implementation phase. They may be able to get you good estimates for costs.

 

Q: For long-term maintenance, is there a way to fund maintenance beyond December 2018?

  • A: You should include some ideas in the proposal to show that you’re thinking about the long-term life of the project; however, the grant funds can only be used through December 2018.

 

Q: Our neighborhood has worked with PBOT before and has developed and approved a plan. Can we apply for a grant for a project outlined in an approved plan?  

  • A: Yes, we'll be looking at the project itself. If you see this project as a phase of a larger plan, then just explain how the project meets our grant goals.  

 

Q: What will the grant awardee documentation look like?

  • A: PBOT will want to have some documentation of the project’s success including stories, pictures, and other documentation of the project or program. We are most interested in getting community ideas developed into real projects and publicizing that success.

 

Q: I’ve heard that for placemaking street sign toppers there is a charge from the City to put those on. Would that cost be included in the budget?

  • A: While there will be technical assistance to refine the exact cost after grants are awarded, it’s best if you can put in a rough estimate for all costs that you expect to face.

There are also a number of local companies that supply materials and items that would       

           be part of a placemaking or safety project. They can be a good source of information to

           estimate project costs. The companies are: Traffic Safety Supply (tssco.com) and

            Parking Zone (parkingzone.com)

 

Q: Can the grant pay for an artist?

  • A: Yes. It would be helpful to explain how the artist supports the goals of the project.

 

Q: Can any of the projects take place on private property?

  • A: Yes, but applicants must make sure they have documented permission by the property owner/manager and that such a project adheres to the eligibility requirements and provides a benefit to the public and meets other goals of the grant program.

 

Q: Will PBOT be able to broker relationships with other jurisdictions to facilitate a project?

  • A: Yes, during the technical assistance phase, PBOT can help with this. It is advisable that applicants reach out to the other jurisdictions about the project and mention this outreach as part of their proposal.

 

Q: Can one organization/group submit two separate applications?

  • A: Yes. But the organization should submit a separate application for each project. In other words, don’t bundle projects together. Each project will be considered separately.

 

Q: When will the awarded funds be available?

  • A: Grant funds can not be awarded until applications are selected, which will be no later than October 2, 2017. Most projects will go through a technical assistance before awarding funds, so we expect most work and fund payment to take place in 2018. PBOT will make the funds available based on the needs of the project. The funds have been budgeted and can be disbursed as needed.

 

Q: How can applicants find out about PBOT’s programs and priorities?

  • A: A great place to start is with Portland Progress. This is PBOT’s two year strategic work plan. It details PBOT’s strategic priorities and programs. It can be found at www.portlandprogress.com

 

Q: Any ideas/resources to involve houseless neighbors?

  • A: Some great organizations to reach out to are Right to Survive, Right to Dream, Street Roots, shelters, or social service providers (Sisters of the Road, Outside In). However, it’s important to know that these non-profit groups are often limited in time and other resources, so make it easy for them to get involved.

 

Q: Will this grant be awarded annually?

  • A: At this point funding for future years isn’t known and will be determined by PBOT’s budget. However, this type of grant and work is a priority for PBOT, so we would expect to pursue additional funding.

 

Q: Would a visioning or planning phase fit well with this grant?

  • A: No. We are looking for projects that will have a more immediate impact, so visioning and planning aren’t the best activities for this program.

 

Q: Will the amount of money a group asks for affect their changes?

  • A: As long as projects stay within the required grant amounts, the amount of money a group asks for won’t have any influence on a group’s chances. Projects will be judged by their quality and how well they meet the goals of the grant program.

 

Q: Will PBOT offer advice about permit costs in order to help applicants put together their budgets?

Q: Can the grant money be used for sub-grants to other organizations?

  • A: No, the grant money is to support a specific project.

 

Q: Would this grant support a project in a park?

  • A: One of the goals is to have projects that are tied to the public right of way (streets, trails, etc). So if the proposed project is in a park, we would like to see how it connects to the public right-of-way.

 

Q: Can you spend money on community engagement as part of the process?

  • A: Yes.

 

Q: Can this grant be used to pay for staff time in support of the project?***

  • A: Yes. Staff time that is directly related to the proposed project is eligible for support through the grant. Please do be clear how the staff time will support the project’s goals.

Q: How do you track your receipts?

  • A: Work with your fiscal sponsor. Keep track of all receipts and invoices. Technical assistance will be provided once the money has been awarded.

 

Q: Do permits need to be secured when submitting application?

  • A: No, you don’t need a permit before applying, but you should include an estimate for the permit cost. Technical assistance for that particular project will be provided your application

 

Q: Does a project need to be limited to one specific neighborhood?

  • A: No, a project can take place in multiple sites as long as it meets the eligibility requirements and the goals of the grant program.

 

Q: Partner agencies at PBOT such as TriMet are aware this program or merged with process afterwards? Agencies asked to participate.

  • A: Depending on the project we can help you make the connection.

 

Q: Do 501 (3) (6) organizations meet the non-profit requirement of the grant?

  • A: No.

 

Q: Is it ok if we are focused only on one group, rather than spreading our project to all the under-represented groups?

  • A: Yes, that is fine to focus on only one group. Our goal is to have meaningful engagement of historically underserved communities, whether that is one community or several.

 

Q: Who is on the selection committee?

  • A: Bureau Budget Advisory Committee members from the community and PBOT staff. 

 

Q: Can I received an application by mail?

  • A: Yes. Please email us your full address. 

 

If you don’t find the information you need, please email: pbotcommunitygrant@portlandoregon.gov