Welcome to SARPC's digital newsletter. Our goal is to publish a newsletter bi-monthly that provides highlights of projects and activities being undertaken at the agency. If you have any questions or would like to request additional information, please do not hesitate to contact us.
In This Issue

WOW!!!!! What a winter we have had so far in our Region. But through cold, rain, sleet, ice and snow your SARPC staff continues to provide and administer numerous programs and services in our Region. We are all blessed to live and work in Southwest Alabama in spite of very occasional wintry weather. Please contact us if you have questions, suggestions or even constructive criticism.


John F. "Rickey" Rhodes

SARPC had the Department of Homeland Security present staff with Active Shooter Training.

Mayor/Chairman Sandy Stimpson presenting Mayor Yank Lovelace of
Brewton with NORMAN J. WALTON award for Community Excellence. 

Elected Officials from our Region, SARPC Board Members, SARPC
Directors, Sponsors and guests enjoy Annual Meeting on December 7th.


Mobile MPO and TCC/CAC Meetings

There will be a meeting of the Mobile Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) on Febuary 14, 2018 at 2:00 PM in the SARPC Board Room at the GMO Building. Prior to that meeting, the Technical Coordinating Committee/ Citizens Advisory Committee (TCC/CAC) will have a meeting on January 31, 2018.

US 45 Feasibility Study

There were six submittals for the US 45 Feasibility Study last month  The Consultant Selection Committee reviewed the six firms RFQ's, and graded them accordingly.  The three firms that were shortlisted by the Consultant Selection Committee were, Burk-Kleinpeter, Neel-Schaffer and Volkert. Presentations and interviews were last Friday and the committee selected Volkert to compete the work. The contract will soon be under negotiation and we can begin work soon after; we will keep you posted.

Human Services Coordinated Transportation Plan (HSCTP) Update

The South Alabama Regional Planning Commission (SARPC) has completed updating the Human Services Coordinated Transportation Plan which details which projects are eligible for Federal Transit Administration dollars for Elderly and Disabled (5310), Job Access and Reverse Commute projects (5316) or those transit projects that go above and beyond the requirements of ADA (5317). 
SARPC staff held two public meetings to explain the plan, solicit input, and review the FTA 5310 application process. One meeting was held at the Baldwin County Central Annex at 22251 Palmer Street in Robertsdale, Alabama. The second public meeting was at the GM&O Building at 110 Beauregard Street in Mobile, Alabama. The first meeting was sparsely attended but we had good turnout for the one in Mobile. We will be finalizing this plan next week and it will be adopted at the MPO meeting.  The plan may be viewed  HERE .
The HSCTP has now been adopted by the Mobile MPO, RPO, and the SARPC Board. If you have any questions please contact the Transportation Planning Department at SARPC at 251-433-6541.

Transportation Improvement Program( TIP) Now Online

The TIP represents a four year program (2016-2019) for improvements in the various transportation systems located within the Mobile study area as identified in the Mobile MPO's Long Range Transportation Plan (LRTP), the twenty-five year plan for the Mobile Urban area Destination 2040. The LRTP establishes the transportation programs that are needed to meet travel demand by the study year and study area. LRTP projects that become funded are moved into the TIP and submitted to the Alabama Department of Transportation (ALDOT), where they are programmed into the State Transportation Improvement Program (STIP). For MPO projects, TIP project selection is based on priorities established by MPO member governments and the availability of funds through the Surface Transportation Attributable program. For other projects, ALDOT has discretion of project funding based on availability of funds from various types of funding categories.  Most often, projects in the TIP are derived from the LRTP. The TIP guides ALDOT in its annual allocation of funds for transportation improvements and becomes a part of the STIP.
ArcGIS Online is now being utilized by MPO staff to map all federally funded surface transportation projects within our area. Check it out.
2016-2019 E-TIP HERE

Comprehensive, Cooperative, and Continuing Agreement Concerning Mobile's Transportation Planning Process

The Mobile MPO 3-C Agreement has been finalized and executed.  HERE.


Coastal Zone Management Grant Applications
The Coastal Zone Management Grant Applications should be announced in February.  The grant is available to Mobile and Baldwin Counties.  This is a 50/50 grant/match program.  The match can be in the form of cash or in-kind or a combination of the two.  The grant funds can be used for a variety of planning documents such as a comprehensive plan, storm water management plan and zoning ordinance.

Delta Regional Authority

The Delta Regional Authority (DRA) has announced they anticipate the opening of the States' Economic Development Assistance Program (SEDAP) grant application cycle to be March 1st.  Last year there were 7 statewide DRA investments equaling almost 1 million dollars.  These funds were leveraged with partner contributions increasing this amount to $7.1 million dollars of investment in the State of Alabama.  Escambia County is the only county in our region that is eligible to receive DRA funds.  Eligible applicants should work with Local Development District (LDD) offices, which is SARPC, to prepare and submit applications to the DRA. Once project applications are received, a review and determination of project eligibility are made, and projects are then divided into Tier 1 and Tier 2 eligible projects or are considered ineligible to receive funding.  Any applicant whose project is found to be ineligible will be allowed to appeal this decision by working with the LDD and/or DRA to provide additional documentation or other supporting documents to address the material issue(s) cited.

Dollar General Literacy Foundation
The Dollar General Literacy Foundation supports nonprofit organizations, educational institutions, and libraries that offer literacy programs in communities served by Dollar General in 44 states. The Foundation provides support through the following grant programs: Adult Literacy Grants support nonprofit organizations that provide direct services to adults in need of literacy assistance. Family Literacy Grants support family literacy service providers that combine parent and youth literacy instruction. Summer Reading Grants help nonprofit organizations and libraries with the implementation or expansion of summer reading programs for students who are new readers, below grade level readers, or readers with learning disabilities. Online applications for the three programs described above must be submitted by February 22, 2018. In addition, Youth Literacy Grants support schools, public libraries, and nonprofit organizations that work to help students who are below grade level or experiencing difficulty reading. The application deadline for this program is May 17, 2018. Visit the Foundation's website to access guidelines for each grant program

EPA Accepting Applications for Environmental Education Grants

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has announced up to $3 million in funding for locally-focused environmental education grants through the 2018 EE Local Grant Program. EPA will award three to four grants in each of EPA's ten Regions, for no less than $50,000 and no more than $100,000 each, for a total of 30-35 grants nationwide.  In addition to other environmental topics, the 2018 EE Local Grant Program includes support for projects that reflect the intersection of environmental issues with agricultural best-practices, conservation of natural resources, food waste management, and natural disaster preparedness.  Proposals are due March 15. Click here for more information. 

New Release of Census

Business Builder 2.3 Now Available
An advisory from the Census Bureau's Andrew Hait:
The 2.3 update to the Census Business Builder suite of tools went live on December 21, 2017. The updates include new content (including labor force data from the Quarterly Workforce Indicators dataset) and exciting new features (including new Map Customization options). For economic development users of the Regional Analyst Edition of CBB, you can now build regions in RAE from one or more states, counties, cities/towns, or ZIP codes (the first and last options are new). There are also many other enhancements in this release, including many usability improvements for our mobile device-users of CBB.  Check it out at:  https://www.census.gov/data/data-tools/cbb.html
New and Expanded Content:
  • Revised Demographic data (from the 2012-2016 American Community Survey)
  • More Agriculture data (now at the county level too)
  • New Labor force data from the Quarterly Workforce Indicators dataset (for 2- thru 4-digit NAICS codes at the state and county levels)
  • Revised Consumer Spending data (now Per Household instead of Per Capita)
New Features:
  • Customize Map Classes (quantile and equal interval) and Color Palette (2-, 3-, and 5-color options)
  • Choose Basemap (topographic, imagery, and dark)
  • Margins of Error displayed in map Data Dashboard
  • Other performance tweaks
View flyers that provide an Overview of the Small Business and Regional Analyst Editions of CBB.
Census Bureau Releases OnTheMap for Emergency Management 4.4

The Census Bureau has recently released version 4.4.1 OnTheMap for Emergency Management. OnTheMap for Emergency Management provides real-time access to a range of detailed U.S. Census Bureau data about the people living and working in areas being affected by hurricanes, floods, wildfires, winter storms, and federal disaster declaration areas. Version 4.4.1 provides updated LEHD Origin-Destination Employment Statistics (LODES) data for 2015.  To access the tool, please click  Here .
For help and documentation, please click  Here . For comments or questions, please contact  OnTheMap.Feedback@census.gov .


20th Annual Business Expo and Job Fair

It is that time of the year in which Employment and Economic Development Services gears up for the largest event of its kind in the South Alabama Regional Planning Commission's (SARPC) region - the 20th Annual Business Expo and Job Fair. 
Economic development in the SARPC region is exploding with new businesses locating in the area - in Mobile County: Walmart Distribution Center, Amazon Sorting Center; in Escambia County: Brown Precision, and Provalus; in Baldwin County: OWA Amusement Park, the approval of the new Industrial Park and the opening of the Mobile Infirmary ER facility.  With more to come on the horizon the need for a business expo and job fair is paramount.
Therefore, we are excited to present the 20th Annual Business Expo and Job Fair along with our Title Sponsor, The Grounds, and we look forward to a possible record year of businesses and job seekers attending.  

Mature Staffing Service

Our service takes the frustration and cost of releasing employees and finding qualified workers off of you and on to us. We are responsible for Worker Compensation costs, payroll taxes, and removing an employee who is just not a good fit.  Try it and see how easy it is.

Contact Shannon Raley at (251) 706-4639 or email her at 

SAPA - South Alabama Purchasing Association

Do you are your staff get frustrated with the bidding process in trying to find the best price for supplies?  Here is some good news......  If your organization is a non-profit or a government entity, you will want to check out the savings the South Alabama Purchasing Association can provide.  SAPA has contracts with companies which provide:  fuel, office supplies, vehicle parts and batteries, asphalt, pine straw, hay, etc.

For more information call Wayne Smith at (251) 463-1271 or email Wayne@MySAPA.com.  You will be glad you did.


Caregiver College

Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Workshop
Sponsored by SARPC/Area Agency on Aging

Thursday, March 1, 2018 at 9:30 A.M. - 1:30 P.M.

Gulf Shores United Methodist Church
1900 Gulf Shores Parkway, Gulf Shores, AL 36542

2018 Senior Life Styles Expos

Volunteer Appreciation Christmas Luncheon

Area Agency on Aging had a Volunteer Appreciation Christmas luncheon on December 14 , 2017, at the GM&O building.  We had a nice turn out of Volunteers to come decked out in red.

Everyone introduced themselves and the program(s) that they volunteer with at the AAA

SHIP Volunteers group

Some of our Volunteer Guardians

2018 Legacy Leadership Institute

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