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TAP Questions

    While looking at a past cycle of USTAR's TAP, I saw it requested an itemized budget. I do not see that requirement here.

    USTAR is not requesting an itemized budget for this part of the TAP cycle. If awarded, USTAR will reach out to ask for a detailed itemized budget for contracting purposes, and will provide a budget template.

    Do references count as part of the six page white paper limit?

    No, you may include references in addition to the six page white paper

    Are we allowed to attach the resumes of key team members as appendices to the white paper without it counting against the 6 page limit?

    No. There is a section in the white paper, as well as the online application, dedicated to discussing team members.

    I am trying to download the Quad Chart and Scope of Work and get an error message that looks like this: Mb"$+Žc°«+bºº¦¡ T±‹˜Í朘5w á²N­‹—8¬†øs”÷¬€ÚœŽË‘&³IIö(þ...

    Make sure you are using the Chrome browser, which the application portal is optimized for. This should eliminate that error message.

    If it is felt by the reviewing committee that there are a number of applicants who they feel qualify, how is the amount shared if, for example, their cumulative budget amounts exceed $2.5m, your allotted budget for this round?

    There is not a specified amount a company can be awarded. However, since the available funds are limited to $2.5m, affordability of each selected project/company is a selection criteria.

    How are "matching funds" defined?

    Matching funds are those that are available from non-TAP sources that will be dedicated to meeting the technology milestones proposed.

    With respect to "total funding to date," we have a current contract, for which part of the funds have been spent and the remaining balance will be spent in parallel to the TAP effort. For total funding to date, should we include the funds already spent to date, or the total amount of funds awarded (including those spent to date and those that will be spent)?

    Total funding to date is the amount committed to the project.  Therefore the total contract amount can be listed.

    In the 2017 Spring TAP Program Announcement, it says, "USTAR is focused on the following targeted technology industry sectors for FY17 (July 1-June 30)" Elsewhere, it says that award notification within 45 days of deadline and that contract award award within 45 days of notification. For the purposes of budgeting, when should the expected award and start date be?

    The targeted technology industry sectors for FY17 refers to the technology industry sector categories that are selected every year and not the award timeframe.  The award notification is anticipated 90 days after the close of the proposal period or June 27, 2017.

    In the "Business Case" section of the online application, the "Go to Market Strategy" field can accept the entry of more than two lines of text, but only displays the first two lines. Should the response to this field be limited to two lines, or limited by what the field will accept/allow editing for (and not display on the web form)?

    Applicants can input as much text as they’d like. Scrolling up and down within the text box should eliminate this visibility problem.

    In the TAP Program Announcement, the funding section (F) contains the following wording, "Please identify any private or government funds raised to date or pending. Include the source of funds and total amount raised. Describe potential matching funds." In the TAP Webinar, it states, "The White Paper should match the online application." In addition to information on funds raised to date and potential matching funds, does the Funding Section (F) of the white paper require any of the following: Budget by Technical Milestone, Multi-year business plan, and Budget by fiscal year?

    The detailed budget information is only required in the budget template of the application.  Please provide the information requested in the “funding” section of the white paper as requested in the program announcement.  You do not need to provide the budget by technical milestone, multi-year business plan and budget by fiscal year in the white paper.

    What are defined as overhead costs?

    TAP funding is primarily for those costs directly associated with moving the project from one technical milestone to the next. Proposals should not include any request or budget for payment of “overhead” costs, or any other indirect costs based on projections, estimates, percentages or formulas. Grant funding will only be awarded for costs specifically attributable to the individual project described in the proposal.

    Does TAP cover software development?

    USTAR does not fund app development or software solutions that do not have significant technical development requirements.

    Does Tap includes gaming projects?

    TAP does not directly support gaming projects. Most apps and games do not fall under the categories listed in the announcement. However, if a project is clinical in nature and may be used as a treatment option or in a similar fashion, the project may be considered.

    Does the company's business entity need to be formed prior to the submission of the Letter of Intent?

    No, however a valid Utah business license number is required to participate in the program and must be provided as part of the Full Applications which are due October 4, 2016 at 8:00 a.m. MST.
    Full Application:  All applicants should download and complete the application form, W9, quad chart, white paper and budget, in that order. Applications are due October 4, 2016 at 8:00 a.m. A letter of intent is not necessary to apply, but is encouraged.

    What is USTAR's total available award funds?

    For the 2017 TAP rounds, approximately $2.25m will potentially be awarded each round.

    Is there a specific range or cap for winners?

    There is not a specified amount a company can be awarded. However, since available funds are limited to $2.25m per round, affordability of each selected project/company is a selection criteria.

    Can you please describe the difference between the TAP and the TCIP programs?

    Both of these programs are tools of the State of Utah which are specifically focused on technology. The Technology Commercialization Innovation Program (TCIP) is under the auspices of the Governors Office of Economic Development (GOED) and the Technology Acceleration Program (TAP) a new Utah Science, Technology and Research Agency(USTAR) program focused on technology entrepreneurs. USTAR and GOED TCIP programs work in concert to cover the spectrum of early and late stage technology and product development. Specifically, TCIP is positioned to leverage the investment in USTAR early research which has matured to the point of preparing for market entry. For example, in 2014 75 percent of TCIP awardees had received USTAR support. TCIP invests in companies that are market ready. Below is a quick summary of these two programs and their foci:

    TECHNOLOGY OUTREACH INNOVATION PROGRAM/ TAP (USTAR)

    • Provides pre-seed funding to Utah-based science and technology startups in the early stages of proof of concept, prototyping and product development.
    • Targets technology industries with a market gap in Utah, including: automation and robotics, advanced materials, energy and clean technology and life sciences.
    • TAP’s focus is on tech maturation that results in mid-term economic development returns (three-ten years)
    •  Functions on the Federal government’s Technology Readiness Levels (TRLS) 3-5.

    BUSINESS SERVICES, INCLUDING TCIP (GOED)

    •      TCIP provides grants to university teams and small businesses to accelerate the commercialization of their innovative technology ready for market entry.
    •      TCIP  heavily leverages the GOED Business Resource Centers (BRCs) to provide coordination of business support, education, tracking of clients, access to sources of funding, training, technical expertise, talent, and networking for new and existing businesses.

    When do you anticipate funded teams being under contract?

    It is estimated to be around December 1,  but this may very depending on the workload of contracting agents.

    Are there any limits to the size, revenue, or funding history of the company applying for these funds?

    No, there is no limit regarding the size, revenue or past funding. However, as stated in the announcement, please describe any private or government funds raised to date or pending. Include the source of government funds. Include total amount raised. This will not be a factor in determining those who will receive TAP funding.

    Does eligibility depend on being an SBA-qualified Utah company?

    No. Please refer to the application for the requirements. Full SBA certification is not required. To be eligible to participate in TAP, an Applicant must: (a) be an active Utah corporation/LLC/partnership, in good standing, registered in Utah, with a substantial presence in Utah; (b) be represented by persons at least 18 years old; and (c) comply with these Official Rules and all requirements outlined in the USTAR TAP 2Announcement. TAP is void outside of Utah. Employees, interns, contractors, and official office-holders of USTAR, and their immediate families (parents, siblings, children, and spouses of each, regardless of where they live) and members of the households (whether related or not) of such employees, officers and directors are ineligible to participate in TAP.

    Does eligibility depend of having a technology with a TRL 3-5?

    Yes. As stated in the announcement, technologies that are still in the basic research phase of development are not eligible at this time. Additionally, technologies that have been validated and are already in the market are not eligible for TAP funding. The technology maturity level that TAP is targeting uses the Federal Government Technology Readiness Levels (TRL’s). Proposals that address a technology that would be initially scored as a TRL 3-5 are eligible for consideration under TAP.

    Can an applicant be considered eligible for more than one TAP award?

    A company can submit more than one application as long as the technology or project is different.

    What is meant by estimated budget request?

    We are looking to see the amount you are seeking and how it will be applied within your business per the TAP Budget Template instructions:  Please provide budget amounts by technical milestone and by FY.  For each technical milestone provide the budget amounts in each of the categories listed in the template.  Budget justification can be added as required.  For the “Budget by FY” please provide budget amounts in each budget category that are estimated for each FY of the request.  The “Detailed budget” slide should provide a breakdown of the personnel costs for each technical milestone.

    Can federal R&D and or tech-to-market funds be used as cost-share?

    Yes, please describe any private or government funds raised to date or pending. Include the source of government funds. Include total amount raised.

    Can conference registration fees or business development courses be included in a TAP proposal?

    TAP is focused on technology development and the funds requested must be tied to a technical milestone.  The funds are not intended for sponsorship or business development including conference registration.

    Can legal fees for a patent application be included in the budget for the TAP contract?

    Generally, those fees associated with IP protection and patenting may be allowable. Reasoning is that these are costs associated directly with maturing the technology. Other business-related expenses such as marketing/advertising would not be allowable. Regardless, we would ask that you itemize those expenses for us.

    There is a lot of information requested in some of the quadrants. Should this be addressed as bullets, smaller text, or some kind of summary?

    You may express the details in the white paper submission and summarize a more in the quad chart.

    Would operations budget items be limited to the materials and supplies needed for the work? Also, is the purchases of capital equipment would not be allowed?

    Funding is primarily for those costs directly associated with moving the project from one technical milestone to the next.

    Can you clarify what is meant by FY (Fiscal Year) and how that will effect funds and milestones?

    We are on the Utah State fiscal year which ends Jun 30th each year. Our new FY begins 1 July (for example FY17 began July 1, 2016). If a FY is stipulated in the announcement, funds will need and milestones must be met in the FY specified.

    To whom should we submit a letter of intent? Person, address, and preferred medium.

    Per the program announcement, the letter of intent should be sent to tapinfo@utah.gov and should be addressed to the USTAR Office of Special Programs. You may send as a PDF or Word document.

    Can we have overlapping technology sectors or do we need to focus in just one sector?

    Yes, technology sectors may overlap

    How detailed does the funding amount need to be in the letter of intent?

    Letters of Intent do not need to address funding amount.

    What can the funding be used for? Process improvements, product development, or purchasing capital equipment?

    TAP is focused on technology development and the funds requested must be tied to a technical milestone. The funds are not intended for sponsorship or business development including, but not limited to conference registration.

    Is overlap permitted between the same projects? Can a project receive both TAP and UTAG funding?

    Overlap is not permitted; an applicant can not receive funding twice for the same project or technology.

    Will we receive a notice when we upload our application?

    No. However, you will be able to verify that your application has been saved and uploaded.

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