Whereas Minnesota Housing, the McKnight Foundation, Enterprise Community Partners, and the Urban Land Institute of Minnesota (hereafter: Sponsors) acting by and through designated officers and staff have organized the MN Challenge to Lower the Cost of Affordable Housing (hereafter: MN Challenge) to solicit the entry of ideas from Phase I entrants (hereafter: Entrants) for the purpose of selecting up to three Phase II finalists (hereafter: Finalists) to further implement solutions for lowering the cost associated with developing affordable housing in Minnesota.
By submitting a MN Challenge entry, each Entrant to the fullest extent permitted by law, releases the Sponsors and their partners from any and all claims, causes of action, injuries, damages, liabilities, losses, costs, and expenses resulting in any way from participation in the MN Challenge. No representation, warranty, or undertaking expressed or implied is or will be made by this Request for Ideas. Further, no responsibility or liability is or will be accepted by the Sponsors for their partners in relationship by this Request for Ideas. Selection of an Entrant’s proposal will not create any rights on the Entrant’s part, including, without limitation, rights of enforcement, equity, or reimbursement.
The goal of the MN Challenge is to widely share the ideas generated during the process. By submitting competition materials, products or ideas for selection consideration, Entrants relinquish their copyright or other intellectual property rights on any submitted materials, products, or ideas and grant the MN Challenge Sponsors and others the right to reproduce, publish, exhibit, share, reference, and use any and all materials submitted for the competition without compensation by the Sponsors or others to the Entrant and without restrictions. With respect to work products developed when implementing the winning idea (after the competition), intellectual property rights will be negotiated with the winning team if needed.
PHASE II AWARD
Each of the three Finalists will be awarded up to $10,000 by the Sponsors to assist with the costs associated with the development of Phase II proposals. Finalists will be asked to provide a budget for the development of their Phase II proposal by March 21, 2014. The Sponsors will complete their review of the budgets by March 26 with the goal of having the funding contracts/agreements signed by March 28, assuming that no changes (or only minor changes) are needed to the budgets. The funds will be made available to the Finalists by the Sponsors based on allowable expenses and the approved budget and in conformance with the funding contract/agreement.
If the Sponsors cannot come to agreement with one or more of the Finalists regarding their budgets and the use of the financial support, the Sponsors have the authority to drop one or more of the Finalists and choose a replacement (or replacements) from the other Entrants.
By February 28, the Sponsors will provide details about what the budget must include, what are allowable costs, and what will be in the funding contract/agreement. This information will be posted on the MN Challenge website (www.MNchallenge.com) prior to the selection of the Finalists so that the Finalists can move quickly and start developing their Phase II proposals. Only the Finalists will complete the budget and sign the funding agreement/contract.
The Sponsors will award up to $70,000 to the winning team for implementing its idea. The funds will be made available to the winning team by the Sponsors based on allowable expenses, information in the team’s implementation budget, and other details outlined in the funding agreement/contract. Details on allowable expenses will be provided by February 28, and the details of the funding contract/agreement will be negotiated with the winning team. Note that one key restriction will be that the winning team will not be allowed to use the implementation award (or the Phase II award) to lobby legislators or government officials.
All Finalists will be required to:
At the conclusion of the Challenge, the Sponsors will specify in the final funding contract/agreement the obligations that the winning team will have to meet to receive the funds for implementing the winning idea. If the Sponsors and the winning team are unable to successfully negotiate a contract/agreement, the Sponsors reserve the right to terminate negotiations and enter into negotiations with one of the other Finalists. The Sponsors further reserve the right to request during negotiations that the winning team make whatever adjustments to their team composition that are, in the opinion of the Sponsors, required.
CONFLICT OF INTERESTS
Employees of the Sponsor Organizations will not participate in MN Challenge as Entrants, but will be available for technical assistance to Finalists during Phase II. During Phase I of the competition, Sponsor Organizations will only be available to answer questions about the competition and developing concept papers through two venues: (1) the kickoff event, and (2) the question and answer process outlined in the Phase I timeline, which is provided in this Request for Ideas. However, for questions or issues related to the logistics of registering teams or submitting concepts papers to the website, staff from sponsor organizations can provide assistance at any time.
Any selection panel member who believes him or herself to have a potential conflict of interest with one or more associated Entrant(s) is required to notify the Sponsors about the nature of the potential conflict and to isolate him or herself from the Entrant(s) with respect to any work that is related to the competition. If the panel member in question is unable to maintain such isolation for any reason, the panel member shall recuse him or herself from deliberations with respect to the entry or entries in question. Failure on the part of any panelist to adhere to these provisions will result in disqualification of both the panelist and the associated Entrant/Finalist. If the Sponsors believe that the potential conflict of interest cannot be resolved through isolation and/or recusal, the member of selection panel in question will be taken off the panel (and replaced if appropriate and time permits).
MN CHALLENGE PROCEDURAL RIGHTS
The MN Challenge Sponsors have the unilateral and exclusive right at their sole discretion to:
@ St. Thomas University's Second
Annual Minnesota Affordable Housing Conference