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e-CFR data is current as of October 27, 2020

Title 34Subtitle APart 75Subpart A → §75.52

Title 34: Education
Subpart A—General

§75.52   Eligibility of faith-based organizations for a grant and nondiscrimination against those organizations.

(a)(1) A faith-based organization is eligible to apply for and to receive a grant under a program of the Department on the same basis as any other private organization, with respect to programs for which such other organizations are eligible.

(2) In the selection of grantees, the Department may not discriminate for or against a private organization on the basis of the organization's religious character or affiliation and must ensure that all decisions about grant awards are free from political interference, or even the appearance of such interference, and are made on the basis of merit, not on the basis of religion or religious belief, or the lack thereof.

(b) The provisions of §75.532 apply to a faith-based organization that receives a grant under a program of the Department.

(c)(1) A private organization that engages in explicitly religious activities, such as religious worship, instruction, or proselytization, must offer those activities separately in time or location from any programs or services supported by a grant from the Department, and attendance or participation in any such explicitly religious activities by beneficiaries of the programs and services supported by the grant must be voluntary.

(2) The limitations on explicitly religious activities under paragraph (c)(1) of this section do not apply to a faith-based organization that provides services to a beneficiary under a program supported only by “indirect Federal financial assistance.”

(3) For purposes of 2 CFR 3474.15, 34 CFR 75.52, 75.712, 75.713, 75.714, and appendix A to this part, the following definitions apply:

(i) Direct Federal financial assistance means that the Department, a grantee, or a subgrantee selects a provider and either purchases goods or services from that provider (such as through a contract) or awards funds to that provider (such as through a grant, subgrant, or cooperative agreement) to carry out services under a program of the Department. Federal financial assistance shall be treated as direct unless it meets the definition of “indirect Federal financial assistance.”

(ii) Indirect Federal financial assistance means that the choice of a service provider under a program of the Department is placed in the hands of the beneficiary, and the cost of that service is paid through a voucher, certificate, or other similar means of government-funded payment. Federal financial assistance provided to an organization is “indirect” under this definition if—

(A) The government program through which the beneficiary receives the voucher, certificate, or other similar means of government-funded payment is neutral toward religion;

(B) The organization receives the assistance as the result of the decision of the beneficiary, not a decision of the government; and

(C) The beneficiary has at least one adequate secular option for use of the voucher, certificate, or other similar means of government-funded payment.

Note to paragraph (c)(3): The definitions of “direct Federal financial assistance” and “indirect Federal financial assistance” do not change the extent to which an organization is considered a “recipient” of “Federal financial assistance” as those terms are defined under 34 CFR parts 100, 104, 106, and 110.

(d)(1) A faith-based organization that applies for or receives a grant under a program of the Department may retain its independence, autonomy, right of expression, religious character, and authority over its governance.

(2) A faith-based organization may, among other things—

(i) Retain religious terms in its name;

(ii) Continue to carry out its mission, including the definition, development, practice, and expression of its religious beliefs;

(iii) Use its facilities to provide services without removing or altering religious art, icons, scriptures, or other symbols from these facilities;

(iv) Select its board members and otherwise govern itself on a religious basis; and

(v) Include religious references in its mission statement and other chartering or governing documents.

(e) A private organization that receives any Federal financial assistance under a program of the Department shall not discriminate against a beneficiary or prospective beneficiary in the provision of program services or in outreach activities on the basis of religion or religious belief, a refusal to hold a religious belief, or refusal to attend or participate in a religious practice. However, an organization that participates in a program funded by indirect financial assistance need not modify its program activities to accommodate a beneficiary who chooses to expend the indirect aid on the organization's program.

(f) If a grantee contributes its own funds in excess of those funds required by a matching or grant agreement to supplement federally funded activities, the grantee has the option to segregate those additional funds or commingle them with the funds required by the matching requirements or grant agreement. However, if the additional funds are commingled, this section applies to all of the commingled funds.

(g) A religious organization's exemption from the Federal prohibition on employment discrimination on the basis of religion, in section 702(a) of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. 2000e-1, is not forfeited when the organization receives financial assistance from the Department.

(Authority: 20 U.S.C. 1221e-3 and 3474, E.O. 13559)

(Authority: 20 U.S.C. 1221e-3 and 3474)

[69 FR 31710, June 4, 2004, as amended at 81 FR 19406, Apr. 4, 2016]

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