Native American Agriculture Fast Track Fund (NAAFTF)

Welcome to the application process to seek grant funding for the one-time cy pres distribution from the Keepseagle v. Vilsack Settlement Agreement also known as the Native American Agriculture Fast Track Fund (NAAFTF). These funds will be a one-time distribution of $38,000,000 total between all grantees. We appreciate your interest.


About the application process: The application process for the NAAFTF involves two specific phases:

► Phase 1: Letter of Inquiry (LOI). Applicant organizations were asked to submit a short Letter of Inquiry (LOI) Application that included documentation indicating eligibility as well as a short summary of their project proposal, requested award amount, organizational budget and budget of program(s) serving Native American farmers and ranchers.

Applicants are requested to submit only one LOI application. If multiple LOIs are submitted, the Advisory Committee will only review the first LOI submitted. This process closed on June 24, 2016. No other LOI applications are being accepted.

► Phase 2: Full Proposal.On July 28, 2016, invitations were extended to eligible applicant organizations that met all of the NAAFTF criteria to submit a full proposal for consideration of a grant award from the NAAFTF.

Funding for specific, eligible programs requested to support activities for a maximum of 24 months (2 years) are being considered in the second and final phase of the process. Entities receiving funds will be required to use the funds to provide services to Native American farmers and/or ranchers, including those seeking to become farmers or ranchers, to support and promote their continued engagement in agriculture.

Funds may be used for project support, endowment, scholarships, regrants and/or capital expenditures. A single application may include a mix of funds requested for project support, endowment, scholarships, regrants and capital expenditures. Funding for programs that will be conducted in the next two years will be given highest priority. Funding for endowments and capital expenses will be given lower priority because of the relatively low amount of the award pool.

Eligibility: Entities eligible to receive funding from the NAAFTF must have provided business assistance, agricultural education, technical support, or advocacy services to Native American farmers and/or ranchers between January 1, 1981 and November 1, 2010.

Eligible entities are:

  • Nonprofit organizations with IRS §501(c)(3) tax-exempt status;
  • Nonprofit organizations with §7871 Designation chartered under the tribal law of a state or federally recognized tribe;
  • Educational institutions described in §170(b)(1)(A)(ii);and
  • Instrumentalities of a state or federally recognized tribe, designated under §7701(a)(40).

Verification of eligibility and services provided will be required as part of the application process.

About the application process:The application process for the NAAFTF will involve two specific phases:

Updates on LOI Process:

If you were a LOI applicant and your application was denied, we are sorry that we will not be able to provide reasons why your application was not selected to move forward. It was a highly competitive process and NAAFTF had many more applications then could possibly be funded. No appeal process is available. When the Native American Agriculture Fund (NAAF) is established (which we hope may be within one year), your organization will be welcome to apply to that entity for funds.

NAAFTF is not making public any of the applications submitted to us, other than those that we end up recommending to the Court on October 17, 2016. Until we have a final decision on which applications will receive funding, we cannot answer as to what services will be provided in which locations.

Full Proposal Round and Final Recommendations: Key Dates and Updates:

  • July 28-September 2, 2016, Full Proposal Process for Invited Applicants: Only organizations receiving a formal invitation will be eligible to submit a full proposal for consideration of a grant award from the NAAFTF. The deadline for full proposal submission is September 2, 2016 at 4pm PDT/5pm MDT/6pm CDT/7pm EDT.
  • September 3-October 9, 2016 Full Proposal Review: The Advisory Committee will review applications and make recommendations to class counsel.
  • October 17, 2016 Submission of Recommendations to the Court: Class Counsel will submit recommendations on grant awards to the Court.
  • Appeal: While an appeal was filed objecting to the District Court’s modification of the Settlement Agreement, that appeal does not change the timelines for the NAAFTF process. Recommendations for how the $38 million “fast track” funds should be distributed are due to the Court on October 17, 2016, and the appeal does not change that deadline. Thus, we will continue to move forward with the application process. However, we do not anticipate that the Court will distribute the funds prior to the appeal being resolved, which we hope will be early in 2017.
  • Disbursement of Grant Awards: We do not anticipate that the Court will distribute the funds before successful resolution of the appeal.

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