(1) Any organization qualified to apply for and receive funds from the Nebraska Resources Development Fund may file an application with the department for a grant or loan from such fund. Applications for grants to the department itself shall be filed by the department. Each application shall be filed in such manner and form and be accompanied by such information as may be prescribed by the director and the commission. No applications may be made to receive funds by grant or loan from the Nebraska Resources Development Fund after March 30, 2014.
(2) Any such application shall:
(a) Describe the nature and purpose of the proposed program or project;
(b) Set forth or be accompanied by a plan for development of the proposed program or project, together with engineering, economic, and financial feasibility data and information, and such estimated costs of construction or implementation as may be required by the director and the commission;
(c) State whether money other than that for which the application is made will be used to help in meeting program or project costs and whether such money is available or has been sought for this purpose;
(d) When appropriate, state that the applicant holds or can acquire title to all lands or has the necessary easements and rights-of-way for the project and related lands and has or may acquire all water rights necessary for the proposed project;
(e) Show that the applicant possesses all necessary authority to undertake or participate in the proposed program or project; and
(f) Demonstrate the probable environmental and ecological consequences that may result from such proposed program or project.
(3) Upon receipt of an application, the director shall evaluate and investigate all aspects of the proposed program or project and the proposed schedule for development and completion of such program or project, determine the eligibility of the program or project for funding, and make appropriate recommendations to the commission pursuant to sections 2-1586 to 2-1595. As a part of his or her investigation, the director shall consider whether the plan for development of the program or project is satisfactory. If the director determines that the plan is unsatisfactory or that the application does not contain adequate information upon which to make determinations, the director shall return the application to the applicant and may make such recommendations to the applicant as are considered necessary to make the plan or the application satisfactory.
(4) Requests for utilization of the Nebraska Resources Development Fund for state participation in any water and related land-water resources projects through acquisition of a state interest therein shall also be filed with the department for the director's evaluation, investigation, and recommendations. Such requests shall be filed in the manner and form and be accompanied by such information as shall be prescribed by the department and the commission.