What is the Clearinghouse?
The official name of the Clearinghouse is State Clearinghouse for Intergovernmental Assistance, a unit within the Maryland Department of Planning. In most grant opportunity announcements from the federal government, they will refer to this unit and respective units in the other states and territories as a SPOC, Single Point of Contact.
What does the Clearinghouse do?
As the SPOC (Single Point of Contact) for the State of Maryland, it is the responsibility of the State Clearinghouse for Intergovernmental Assistance to ensure that any project requesting funds or other assistance from federal or State of Maryland government agencies is consistent with known Maryland laws, regulations, and policies. This is accomplished by distributing notice of a proposed project or proposal to various State agencies, and other appropriate county, municipal, and regional governmental agencies and requesting their comments as relates to compliance with public policy. Those comments are compiled and the applicant is notified of the final determination of consistency. If a problem is identified during the review process, Clearinghouse will work with the applicant and the agency that identified the potential problem area to resolve any issues.
In addition to reviewing proposals requesting financial assistance, the State Clearinghouse has also been charged with additional intergovernmental review responsibilities through various actions of the State legislature. At the time this page was prepared, those responsibilities include, but are not limited to, the review of proposals related to State-owned real property use, easements, and declarations of surplus needs, Post Office facilities, Historic Nominations, Facilities Plans, Annexations, School Sites, Environmental Assessments, Senior Centers, etc.
What is meant by intergovernmental review?
Clearinghouse is charged with the responsibility of coordinating the review of specific applications for federal and State financial assistance, for direct federal development and for certain planning and other activities requiring intergovernmental coordination. The review process provides for the collection and transmittal of the views of State, regional, and local officials in Maryland. It provides a sure and simple means for learning about and commenting on specific federal and State applications.
What does this mean to me?
Any individual, nonprofit or for-profit organization, governmental agency, including Federal and State of Maryland governmental agencies, and organizations outside of this State requesting funds from the federal government or state agency to be used in the State of Maryland must provide copies of the proposal to the State Clearinghouse for Intergovernmental Assistance.
How did the Clearinghouse get its authority?
The SPOC program is a national program authorized by Presidential Executive Orders 12372 and 12616, with the Federal Office of Management and Budget (OMB), as the national central contact for all SPOC's. Gubernatorial Executive Order 01.01.1983.17 designated the Clearinghouse as Maryland's Single Point of Contact (SPOC). The review and coordination function for the Clearinghouse is outlined in Code of Maryland Regulations (COMAR), sections 34.02.01.04-.06 and 34.02.02.04-.07.
What is an Executive Order?
An Executive Order is a declaration issued by the President of the United States or a Governor which has the force of law, usually based on existing statutory powers, and requiring no action by the Congress or state legislature.