Collaborative Competitive Grants

Portal ID:
Opportunity Type:
  • Grant
Last Updated:



The California State Library’s competitive LSTA grant opportunities: a. help California’s libraries respond effectively to local needs and align services with local community aspirations; b. support experimentation and R&D in California’s libraries; and c. provide training and support in grant writing and grant management for the California library community.


We invite libraries to apply for funding to support local and collaborative projects that meet community needs and align with community aspirations. We are especially interested in: (We encourage applications from…) · projects that focus on underserved populations, sustainability, workforce development, and equity, diversity, inclusion; · applications from library jurisdictions and branches of library jurisdictions that have not received LSTA funding in the last five years; · collaborative projects that represent a variety of regions, library sizes, and populations. However, we welcome applications from all California library jurisdictions and library consortia, and on any topic and serving any group. Collaborative Competitive Grants support projects that are implemented by three or more library jurisdictions. Community Partners: IMLS defines a partner as [insert IMLS wording]. Applicants should have a partner in place before submitting the application. The partner should not be a library or a library consortia. Applicants must provide a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to support the partnership. Applicants are not required to have a community partner confirmed before submitting the Intent to Apply form. Eligibility: · The collaborative competitive grant opportunity is open to California libraries and library consortia. · Any library or library consortium that is a lead applicant on a collaborative competitive grant application may also be part of the application team on a separate collaborative competitive grant application. · Libraries that apply for a collaborative competitive grant may also apply for a local competitive grant. Intent to Apply form (non-binding): · All potential competitive grant applicants must complete the Intent to Apply form. · Agencies that submit an Intent to Apply form may choose not to submit a Full Application; however, only agencies that have submitted an Intent to Apply form will be eligible to submit a Full Application. · Intent to Apply forms will be reviewed by State Library staff and selected applicants will be invited to complete a Full Application. · An invitation to submit a Full Application is not a guarantee of funding. Project Budgets: Applicants are expected to contribute a local match to the grant funds in the form of a cash match and/or in-kind contributions. Using Project Funds: All proposed expenditures must comply with federal restrictions on the use of LSTA grant funds. Using Project Funds: The lead applicant may not re-grant funds to other members of the applicant team or to any other agency.

Eligibility Requirements

Eligible Applicants:

  • Public Agency

The applicant team should include: (a) a lead applicant (either a library or a library consortium) that is responsible for submitting the application, receiving and expending project funds, and submitting project reports; (b) at least two collaborating libraries if the lead applicant is a library and at least three collaborating libraries if the lead applicant is a library consortium.

Matching Funding Requirement:

Applicants are expected to contribute a local match to the grant funds in the form of a cash match and/or in-kind contributions. You are required to share in project expenses at the level indicated in the approved project budget. You must also maintain auditable records of all project costs whether they are charged to award funds or supported by cost-sharing contributions.

Important Dates

Application deadline The date (and time, where applicable) by which all applications must be submitted to the grantor.
Expected award announcement The date on which the grantor expects to announce the recipient(s) of the grant.
July 1, 2021
Period of performance The length of time during which the grant money must be utilized.
July 1, 2021- Aug 30, 2022
Anticipated Open Date
September 2020

Funding Details

Expected number of awards A single grant opportunity may represent one or many awards. Some grantors may know in advance the exact number of awards to be given. Others may indicate a range. Some may wish to and wait until the application period closes before determining how many awards to offer; in this case, a value of “Dependent” will display.
Estimated amount per award Grant opportunities representing multiple awards may offer awards in the same amount or in varied amounts. Some may wish to wait until the application period closes before determining per-award amounts; in this case, a value of “Dependent” will display.
$50,000 – $250,000
Letter of Intent Required? Certain grants require that the recipient(s) provide a letter of intent.
Yes ( see Description for details )
Requires Matched Funding? Certain grants require that the recipient(s) be able to fully or partially match the grant award amount with another funding source.
Funding Source: The funding source allocated to fund the grant. It may be either State or Federal (or a combination of both), and be tied to a specific piece of legislation, a proposition, or a bond number.
  • Federal

Funding Source Notes:

Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) grants are federal funds from the Institute of Museum and Library Services that are awarded by the State Library to eligible California libraries. Available funding is based off the federal budget released in February.

Funding Method: The manner in which the grant funding will be delivered to the awardee. Funding methods include reimbursements (where the recipient spends out-of-pocket and is reimbursed by the grantor) and advances (where the recipient spends received grant funds directly).
  • Advance(s)

Funding Method Notes:

Funds are distributed in one ninety percent (90%) payment. If your full grant amount is $20,000 or more, ten percent (10%) of the grant award is withheld until the end of the project period.  It is payable only if the grant recipient fulfills all project reporting requirements and expends all funds, or returns all unspent grant funds, by the time specified in the grant program.

How to Apply

State agencies/departments recommend you read the full grant guidelines before applying.


For questions about this grant, contact:
Angela Shannon, 1-916-653-6699,

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