CSBG DCL-2021-10 FY 2020 Annual Report Requirements and Due Date Extension

Publication Date: March 11, 2021

Community Services Block Grant

Dear Colleague Letter

DCL#: CSBG-DCL-2021-10

DATE: March 11, 2021

TO: States, Territories, and CSBG Eligible Entities

SUBJECT: FY2020 CSBG Annual Report Requirements and Due Date Extension

ATTACHMENT(S): FY2020 CSBG Annual Reporting Timeline, FY2020 CSBG Annual Reporting Requirements, CSBG Annual Report Kickoff Presentation, CSBG Annual Reporting Presentation

Dear Colleagues,

This message provides additional detail on the Fiscal Year (FY) 2020 Community Services Block Grant (CSBG) Annual Report requirements. This includes a discussion of reporting related to regularly appropriated CSBG (referred to as regular CSBG) as well as the supplemental CSBG grants awarded as a result of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act of 2020 (referred to as CSBG CARES) and the Additional Supplemental Appropriations for Disaster Relief Act of 2019 (referred to as Disaster Supplemental). 

Background on the CSBG Annual Report

The Office of Community Services (OCS) rolled out the current CSBG Annual Report in 2017. This is the CSBG Network’s most recent comprehensive revision of CSBG data collection and reporting since 1983. The information in the CSBG Annual Report is used at local, state, federal, and national levels to improve performance, track results from year-to-year, and maintain accountability for critical activities and outcomes at each level of the CSBG Network.

CSBG eligible entities coordinate a broad range of resources to ensure a positive impact on the causes and conditions of poverty. As of Fiscal Year (FY) 2018, the CSBG Network served over 15 million families with CSBG resources totaling $694 million. The CSBG Annual Report serves as the vehicle for detailing an eligible entity’s overall services, strategies and outcomes. The CSBG Annual Report data in the aggregate — from all corners of the CSBG Network — helps us better tell Community Action’s significant impact on individual, families and communities.

FY 2020 Reporting

For FY 2020 reporting, states[1] and CSBG eligible entities should plan to submit separate Annual Reports for Regular CSBG, CSBG CARES Supplemental, and CSBG Disaster Supplemental funding (the supplemental Annual Reports have been abbreviated). As noted above, since regular CSBG annual reporting typically encompasses all Community Action services, strategies and outcomes, OCS expects all funding streams (i.e., Regular CSBG, CSBG CARES, Disaster Supplemental, and all other sources) to be included in the regular CSBG Annual Report.

The CSBG CARES Supplemental and CSBG Disaster Supplemental Annual Reports include reporting specific to each of the supplemental funding streams. The rationale for a separate report for the supplemental funds is based off OCS’ experience with prior supplementals, and the need to be able to report to Congress and other interested stakeholders about the impact of each of the supplemental funding streams.

Please recall that in the Notice of Award Terms and Conditions as well as in CSBG Dear Colleague Letter (DCL)-2021-04, OCS requested that the CSBG Network be prepared to report on the use of CSBG CARES and CSBG Disaster Supplemental funds and activities separately from Regular CSBG funding.

Due Date Extension

After further consideration and discussions with the CSBG Network, OCS is extending the due date to June 30, 2021, for all three reports. OCS believes this will provide enough time to:

  1. complete the OMB clearance for the Supplemental Reports including implementing the revisions OCS made due to feedback during the 60-day public comment period;
  2. release SmartForms for all three reports; and
  3. allow states additional time to receive and review the data from CSBG eligible entities prior to submitting to OCS.

OCS is extending the due date cautiously. In prior years, extending the due date resulted in additional delays with finalizing the reports and releasing the SmartForms for the following year. OCS is requesting the help of the CSBG Network to finalize the FY2020 Annual Report data in a timely fashion in order to then release FY2021 SmartForms in a timely fashion. OCS is committed to meeting all due dates as outlined in the attachment, FY2020 CSBG Annual Reporting Timeline, in order to ensure that future reporting is completed on time. 

Reporting requirements as noted in CSBG-DCL-2021-04 (issued November 23, 2020)

CSBG-DCL-2021-04 outlines the expectations for each report and module. Based on comments received during the 60-day Federal Register Notice public comment period — OCS has updated the expectations slightly. Please find the revised FY2020 CSBG Annual Reporting Requirements chart attached.

Regular CSBG

For the regular CSBG Annual Report, states and CSBG eligible entities will report as normal on Module 1 (State Administration), Module 2 (Eligible Entity Expenditures) and Module 4 (Individual/ Family Services). OCS revised Module 3 (Community Transformations) to allow CSBG eligible entities to identify which funding source(s) were used to implement a Community Transformation. As a reminder, “normal reporting” includes reporting on all Community Action funding resources, related services, strategies, and outcomes.

CSBG CARES Supplemental and CSBG Disaster Supplemental Annual Report

For the CSBG CARES Supplemental and Disaster Supplemental Annual Reports, states will report using a simplified version of Module 1 that is focused on the related Supplemental, including allocations to CSBG eligible entities, state usage of Supplemental funds, and lessons learned. For Module 2, CSBG eligible entities will report using a simplified version focused on expenditures of Supplemental funds. For Module 3, CSBG eligible entities have the option to identify Community Transformations funded by CSBG CARES and/or the Disaster Supplemental within the regular CSBG Module 3 report. For Module 4, CSBG eligible entities will only report on services provided to individuals and families (Section B) in FY2020. OCS may request additional information in Module 4 in future years.

Importance of this Reporting

OCS recognizes that we as a Network are on the eve of the one-year anniversary of preventing, preparing for, and responding to the COVID-19 pandemic in the U.S. The CSBG Network, continues to play a critical role in millions of people’s lives — helping them to not only make ends meet, but also consider their goals for a better future. Being able to share the story of the CSBG Network’s critical role during this public health crisis will only be as good as the data collected. OCS asks that the CSBG Network consider ways to ensure high-quality data. This can include using CSBG funds to support staff time spent collecting, reviewing, analyzing, and tracking data. 

In addition to sharing the data on how the CSBG Network supports individuals and families striving to increase their economic security, OCS is reminding states and CSBG eligible entities to include the data that supports community-level change. For example, we are aware that many CSBG eligible entities have pivoted to partner with public health entities, serve as COVID-19 testing sites and/or assist with COVID-19 contact tracing. Working in tandem with community partners to decrease the COVID-19 infection rate is a prime example of a system integration-transformation strategy to meet a community level goal, which could be included under Module 3. 

Webinars and Technical Assistance

OCS is hosting a series of webinars to provide additional training and technical assistance related to this year’s annual reporting requirements.

Past Webinars

Upcoming Webinars

OCS plans to provide additional webinars, training, and technical assistance in the month of April. OCS will release a full schedule for April in the upcoming weeks.

Thank you for your attention to these matters. OCS looks forward to continuing to provide high-quality services to OCS grantees.

Charisse Johnson

Director, Division of Community Assistance
Office of Community Services

[1] “States” includes the 50 United States, Puerto Rico, and the District of Columbia. For the purposes of this document, this also includes U.S. Territories who do not receive CSBG funds through the consolidated block grant.

Current as of: