NOTICE OF INTENT TO MAKE A SINGLE-SOURCE AWARD. In accordance with Department of Interior Guidance (505 DM 2), U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Region 2 hereby provides notice of its intent to make a single-source award in the estimated amount of $288,900 to the American Bird Conservancy under a multi-year cooperative agreement (FY 2009 Âż FY 2013) for providing the personnel and associated office space/support necessary to coordinate, support, and facilitate the activities of the Rio Grande Joint Venture. Joint ventures, the partnerships that were originally formed to implement the North American Waterfowl Management Plan, are regional, self-directed organizations involving Federal, State, and local governments, corporations, and a wide range of non-governmental conservation groups that have proven to be a successful means of developing cooperative conservation efforts to protect habitats of waterfowl and other birds. Joint ventures address multiple local, regional, and continental goals for sustaining migratory bird populations by developing scientifically based landscape conservation plans and habitat projects that benefit migratory birds and other wildlife populations. The joint ventures incorporate biological planning, conservation design, and conservation delivery with monitoring and research in an adaptive resource management framework (i.e., strategic habitat conservation) to create the biological-science and conservation-partnership base which will allow the joint venture partners to pool resources for regional projects in critical habitats for priority bird species. Under authorities of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act and the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Act, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service provides administrative funding for joint ventures, covering the costs of primary support staff and base program operations. The objective of the cooperative agreement with the American Bird Conservancy, a federally-recognized non-profit corporation, is to support core staff and base program activities of the Rio Grande Joint Venture partnership. A cooperative agreement was chosen because there is substantial Federal involvement in the project (i.e., the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is a member of the Rio Grande Joint Venture Management Board which participates in directing and managing this project, including the approval of any modifications). Competition would have a significant adverse effect on the continuity of the effectiveness of operations of the migratory bird habitat conservation partnership, especially activities under various elements that are essential to the management and conservation of birds and their habitat (e.g., Biological Planning; Conservation Delivery; Research; and Communication and Outreach).The single-source determination is in accordance with criterion #2 (Continuation) under Department of Interior guidance (505 DM 2 at 2.14 B). THERE IS NO ÂżFULL ANNOUNCEMENTÂż ASSOCIATED WITH THIS NOTICE. A multi-year cooperative agreement with the American Bird Conservancy has been executed to facilitate effective and efficient coordination of migratory bird conservation efforts in the Rio Grande Joint Venture region to meet the objectives of the partnership. The Rio Grande Joint Venture partnership is directed by the Management Board; members of the Management Board ensure that commitment and support is maintained to achieve the goals and objectives of the partnership. The Management Board had recommended establishing the cooperative agreement with the American Bird Conservancy to facilitate operations of the Rio Grande Joint Venture partnership. The American Bird Conservancy will provide personnel and associated office space/support to coordinate, support and facilitate the activities of the Rio Grande Joint Venture Management Board; coordinate project development and funding; and organize planning, tracking and evaluation, and communications necessary to advance the purposes of the Rio Grande Joint Venture partnership. The Management Board will provide guidance to the American Bird Conservancy, a member of the Rio Grande Joint Venture Management Board, on the direction and management of the partnership throughout the term of the cooperative agreement. The period of performance for the award for the personnel and associated office space/support outlined above will be for the period of June 1, 2012 through September 16, 2013. With this award, the total contribution by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to this project will be $759,640. The period of performance for the project is through September 30, 2014; and the total funding through the entirety of the project is estimated to be $1,048,540. However, any funding awarded to support core staff and base program activities of the Rio Grande Joint Venture partnership beyond September 16, 2013, will be subject to the availability of appropriations authorized by law and administratively allocated by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.