Applications were due on Friday, April 29, 2022 at 5:00 PM.
We are no longer accepting applications for this RFP process.
The Seattle Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs (OIRA) sought applications from agencies interested in providing naturalization assistance and related services to low-income immigrants and refugees as a partner with OIRA’s New Citizen Program (NCP).
About the New Citizen Program (NCP)
For more than 20 years, NCP organizations have provided legal assistance to low-income clients applying for U.S. citizenship, including many who are elderly, illiterate, or have limited English skills. In addition to representing clients in their citizenship cases, NCP organizations also provide citizenship instruction, interview preparation, as well as case management and referrals for particularly complex cases.
This Request for Proposal (RFP) was open to community-based agencies that assist immigrants and refugees living in the city of Seattle and in King County. Agencies must have been Department of Justice (DOJ)-recognized or have a pending application likely to be approved before June 1, 2022.
1. Our agency is a fiscal sponsor to a community partner/affiliate immigration agency that works with our community members. Are we eligible for funding through this RFP?
The NCP RFP will accept applications from agencies that work with a fiscal sponsor. The agency providing legal services must meet all relevant eligibility requirements, including those related to Department of Justice (DOJ) recognition. All partners would need to sign the application and then be available to answer questions about the application. The fiscal sponsor and the sponsored agency can divide up the duties any way they please, with the understanding that OIRA would require agreement(s) in writing among the parties. In addition, the fiscal sponsor that holds the contract and receives payments from OIRA is legally responsible for compliance with all contract terms, such as ensuring that the agency performing legal services maintains DOJ recognition.
2. My agency, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, is a small business association of color. Are we eligible for funding through this RFP?
Any nonprofit agency, or any entity that has a nonprofit fiscal sponsor, can apply for funding through this RFP. The agency providing legal services must meet all relevant eligibility requirements, including those related to Department of Justice (DOJ) recognition.
3. Our agency is based out of Kent. Would our clients need to receive public benefits?
To qualify for reimbursement under the NCP contract, your clients would need to receive a means-tested public benefit administered by the State of Washington unless they otherwise qualify as a low-income resident of Seattle or resident of a Seattle Housing Authority unit.
4. Do you want the application to be in a specific order, like budget before narrative?
That’s not a big deal to be honest, but the preferred way of doing it is in the order on the checklist. You don’t need to submit checklist itself, but the order on that is preferable because it helps us stay organized.
5. Our agency office in a different Washington city is already receiving funding directly from DSHS-ORIA. Can a different program/district apply for this funding?
Yes, a different office, as long as it is located King County, could apply, even if your agency’s office in a different city gets direct funding from DSHS-ORIA. Agency clients cannot be double counted—they must belong to either NCP or the direct contract, not both. There have been agencies within NCP that have both direct contracts with DSHS and a subcontract with NCP. Delineation needs to be clear, but it hasn’t been an issue.
6. On the proposed personnel detail form (Attachment 4), you want just the info about the folks directly dealing with the contract and not the entire staff of the organization, correct?
Attachment 4 is for people working with or having contact with NCP. It could be admin staff, not only legal service providers, could be .1 FTE. We are not looking for all staff in your agency, just those who will have direct contact with NCP and for whom some part of their salary would be covered by the NCP contract.
7. Are there plans to conduct a RFP for the New Citizen Campaign (NCC)?
Yes, OIRA plans to conduct a RFP for NCC in Fall 2022.
8. I see that providing citizenship instruction is encouraged but not required. The RFP shows that it is also a deliverable that NCP wants reported monthly. For agencies who provide instruction in-house instead of referring out, will this activity also be a pay point?
Citizenship Instruction hours are not a payment point. However, whether or not an agency provides citizenship instruction and the number of instruction hours provided are factors in determining the agency’s monthly base payment.
9. Does NCP take delayed processing times into account when assessing success at meeting targets and deliverables?
Yes, the NCP Program and Policy Specialist will take external delays (outside the agency’s control) into account when assessing an agency’s ability to meet certain targets, and may (at her own discretion) work with the agency to adjust deliverables during the course of the contract.
10. For organizations who are already in NCP, is our past performance weighed in this application?
Applications will be rated only on the information and documentation requested and outlined for this RFP. However, the RFP does seek information regarding an agency’s experience and expertise in this area and will give appropriate weight to those factors.