Application Review and Evaluation

Initial Screening

TCDD staff review applications upon submission for compliance with the requirements of the RFA and to ensure that all sections are complete. Incomplete applications and applications that do not meet the requirements of the RFA will not be considered.


An Independent Review Panel consisting of three to five people with expertise related to the RFA reviews the applications. The panel’s review focuses on the quality of the proposed plan, the feasibility of completing the plan, and how well the proposed project may move TCDD closer to meeting the TCDD State Plan Goals and Objectives. The panel will only consider the contents of the application. The following criteria will be used to evaluate proposals:

  • Significance: Does the project address an important problem or a critical barrier to progress for people with developmental disabilities? How well do the goals address local concerns for people with developmental disabilities? How clearly are the goals and objectives stated? How many people will benefit?
  • Innovation: How creative is the proposal? Will the project provide experiences for groups and/or participants to empower themselves, grow, enhance their well-being, and build powerful connections? Does the project reflect the use of new approaches and techniques and incorporate elements that are new and improved over what has been done in the past?
  • Approach: Does the project include efforts to reach a broader community and/or specific target groups with programs to obtain desired outcomes? Does the applicant clearly spell out how the project will be marketed and promoted?
  • Likelihood of Success: Is the project feasible in terms of time, budget request, and available resources? Does the applicant discuss reasonable evidence it has that this project will achieve the desired results?
  • Sustainability: Does the applicant identify its goal(s) for ensuring future financial sustainability for this project? Does the applicant describe how it will ensure that this idea will be sustainable in the future?
  • Budget: Are the budget and amount requested appropriate and reasonable for this type of project? Was an adequate level of detail provided in the budget justification?

Preference will be given to proposals that:

  • leverage additional funding,
  • demonstrate collaborative partnerships in the community,
  • build organizational and financial capacity,
  • expand or improve over what has been done in the past,
  • show ability to achieve the desired results, and
  • have potential to make long-term impact.

Executive Committee Review and Decision

The TCDD Executive Committee reviews information related to the steps above and makes the final funding decisions. If you have received a grant in the last five years, TCDD staff inform the Executive Committee about your performance on the past Project.

Note: TCDD may give priority to proposals that address the needs of people who are unserved or underserved. This may include, but is not limited to:

  • people living in rural areas,
  • people who experience poverty,
  • people of color, and
  • people with limited English proficiency.