CDFI Fund: First-Time CDFI Fund Grant Applicants Should Register with ASAP

Process for registering new entities may increase application time

Are you interested in applying for an upcoming Community Development Financial Institutions Fund (CDFI Fund) program round, but you haven’t registered in the General Services Administration (GSA) System for Award Management (SAM) yet? Please pay close attention to the following information:

Due to recent third-party fraudulent activity in SAM, an updated process is being implemented in order to verify the identity of new registering entities in is an official website of the U.S. government that collects, validates, stores, and disseminates business information about the federal government’s trading partners in support of contract awards, grants, and electronic payment processes.

Registration in is a prerequisite for participating in many federal government discretionary grant (those funded by Congress through the annual appropriations process) and Federal Credit programs. This includes the CDFI Fund’s Bank Enterprise Award Program (BEA Program), Capital Magnet Fund (CMF), Community Development Financial Institutions Program (CDFI Program), Native American CDFI Assistance Program (NACA Program), and CDFI Bond Guarantee Program (BGP).

Those that are registering a new entity in must now submit a notarized letter to stating that they are the authorized Entity Administrator1 before their entity registration will be activated. This new requirement may substantially increase the time needed to activate a new entity registration.

Since the CDFI Fund anticipates opening the FY 2018 application rounds for the BEA Program and Capital Magnet Fund in late spring 2018, those organizations that may be contemplating applying to these programs but have not yet registered with are encouraged to do so as soon as possible. It is currently unclear how long it will take the GSA to process the notarized letters required to activate new accounts.

While this process only applies to entities that have never previously registered in, and not to those with an existing registration, it is recommended that previous SAM registrants ensure their account is current and active.

Additional information resources:


Thinking of applying for grant funding assistance from the CDFI Fund? There are a number of steps you can take now in order to prepare for submission of a future CDFI Fund grant assistance application. The CDFI Fund has prepared a description of these steps here.

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