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Grants to Iowa State and Local Units of Government to Improve
the Effectiveness of Criminal Evidence Processing

Paul Coverdell Forensic Science Improvement Grant

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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Iowa Governor’s Office of Drug Control Policy (ODCP)

Deadline Date:

06/27/22 4:30 PM Receipt


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Grants to Iowa state and local units of government to improve the effectiveness of criminal evidence processing. Applicants are advised that required registration may take several days to complete. Funding is intended to support the enhancement of laboratories and medical examiners' offices with the stated purpose of improving the quality and timeliness of forensic science and medical examiner services.

A state or unit of local government that receives a Coverdell grant must use the grant for one or more of these six purposes:

  1. To carry out all or a substantial part of a program intended to improve the quality and timeliness of forensic science or medical examiner/coroner services in the State, including those services provided by laboratories operated by the State and those operated by units of local government within the State.
  2. To eliminate a backlog in the analysis of forensic science evidence, including, among other things, a backlog with respect to firearms examination, latent prints, impression evidence, toxicology, digital evidence, fire evidence, controlled substances, forensic pathology, questioned documents, and trace evidence.
  3. To train, assist, and employ forensic laboratory personnel and medicolegal death investigators as needed to eliminate such a backlog.
  4. To address emerging forensic science issues (such as statistics, contextual bias, and uncertainty of measurement) and emerging forensic science technology (such as high throughput automation, statistical software, and new types of instrumentation).
  5. To educate and train forensic pathologists.
  6. To fund medicolegal death investigation systems to facilitate accreditation of medical examiner and coroner offices and certification of medicolegal death investigators.

Grant funding will be prioritized to projects which address the following priorities:

  • Programs designed to improve the timeliness and reduce backlogs for forensic science and medical examiner services.
  • The National Institute of Justice requires that 57% of the funding received by Iowa be utilized on programming which substantially addresses the challenges of the opioid crisis.
  • Accreditation of forensic laboratories and medical examiner offices. 

Specific requirements can be found starting on page 4 of the Application Instructions in Supporting Documents below.

Allowable expenses can be found on page 5 of the Application Instructions.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 189936

Term of Contract:

Grants are expected to be awarded by the Office of Drug Control Policy for a one (1) year period beginning January 1, 2023 through December 31, 2023.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Those eligible to receive grant funds through this solicitation include state and local units of government which operate a forensic laboratory.

For the purposes of this solicitation –
- Any state/local government entity performing forensic science services is considered a “forensic science laboratory.”
- Medical examiner and coroner offices are considered to be forensic science laboratories for the purposes of this solicitation.

For purposes of this solicitation, a local unit of government is defined as a city, county, town, township or other general purpose political subdivision of a state and includes Indian tribes as determined by the Secretary of the Interior.

Unallowable Expenses Include:
- Research
- Non-forensic investigatory functions
- Vehicles
- Land acquisition
- Bonuses or commissions
- Travel or compensation for federal employees
- Military type equipment
- Lobbying
- Fundraising

Due to federal restrictions and/or limited amounts of funding, as a general rule, ODCP does not fund canines, weapons, basic law enforcement equipment, construction, vehicles, or provide continuation or stopgap funding for projects initiated with other grant funding.

Pre-Application Information:

Applications for funding must be received by the Governor’s Office of Drug Control Policy by 4:30 p.m. June 27, 2022.

Applications will be submitted through the online grant management tool. Note: registration is required prior to submitting an application. Registration may take several days to complete.

Grant projects are funded on a reimbursement basis.

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Apply online:

If you have questions related to the Coverdell grant program, please contact:
Dennis Wiggins

Governor’s Office of Drug Control Policy
Pape State Office Building
215 E. 7th Street, 5th Floor
Des Moines, Iowa 50319

CFDA Number:


URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Iowa

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