Volume I; issue vii | January 2020
Eastern Carolina Council of Governments (ECCOG) would love to share your news with the Region. Email your stories to eccadmin@eccog.org
Upcoming Training Opportunities
NCLM Essentials of Municipal Government Course
The NC League of Municipalities and the UNC School of Government will be offering a new and improved Essentials of Municipal Government course. The course is now one day and will be offered at 11 locations throughout the state. The goal is to bring this critical course to people’s backyards and help give them an overview of the responsibilities that they have just taken on with their election to office. Incumbents are also encouraged to attend and learn from the new curriculum. It is a great opportunity to network and can be used a team building for entire councils. The courses will begin December 5, 2019 and end Jan. 31 st , 2020. League and SOG staff will be teaching the class in tandem. The calendar is as follows:
  • January 9, 2020 – Winston-Salem
  • January 10, 2020 – Kannapolis
  • January 11, 2020 – Fayetteville
  • January 23, 2020 – Durham
  • January 30, 2020 – Wilmington
  • January 31, 2020 – New Bern
January 10 - Digital Communications Records Workshop - click here for more information
January 29 - Ethics Training for Elected Officials - click here for more information
Febuary 2-7 - Advanced Leadship Corps - A week-long residential personal leadership course for 12 municipal/12 county elected officials. The target audience is local leaders who are looking for more skill development in the principles of personal advanced leadership in the public arena. The course fee includes lodging and meals, administration and analysis two leadership assessments, and post-event personal coaching. Applications will be received until the end of November.   click here for more information
February 10-13 - N ational Flood Insurance Program/Community Rating System Advanced Course - click here for more information
March 5-6, April 2-3, May 7-8, June 4-5. Leading the Way to Board Excellence , Western Carolina University, Cullowhee –  The target audience is county, municipal and school board members. This 4-part leadership course incorporates personal leadership skill development with leadership in working across boundaries. It also includes a special segment on working with the media. The four day-and-a-half segments are designed to allow commuting (start late-end early) for those in the western region and only one night away for those who need lodging. Two personal leadership assessments are included, with post-event coaching also available. Applications are open until the end of December.    Click here for more information  

Opportunities
NC DOT Rail Division seeks comment on Comprehensive State Rail Plan
NC DOT Rail Division is seeking comment on its new Comprehensive State Rail Plan. This plan identifies ways to make strategic passenger and freight rail investments that support safe and reliable rail transportation, while spurring economic development. The completed plan will be issued in 2020. To review the materials and provide comments, please go to https://ncstaterailplan.metro quest. com/
NC DOT Rail Division seeks comment on Comprehensive State Rail Plan
NC DOT Rail Division is seeking comment on its new Comprehensive State Rail Plan. This plan identifies ways to make strategic passenger and freight rail investments that support safe and reliable rail transportation, while spurring economic development. The completed plan will be issued in 2020. To review the materials and provide comments, please go to https://ncstaterailplan.metroquest.com/
Federal Government takes considerable steps to support Opportunity Zones
The Federal Government has taken significant steps to support Opportunity Zones. To date, Federal agencies have taken over 180 actions and developed a host of Opportunity Zone resources for local leaders, investors, and entrepreneurs. To review the list of Federal actions and resources available to date, please review the HUD Opportunity Zone website at: https://opportunityzones.hud.gov/.
OZ reporting framework released
A new Opportunity Zone Framework resource has been released by the US Impact Investing Alliance, the Beeck Center for Social Impact + Innovation at Georgetown University, and the Federal Reserve of New York. This resources aims to provide further information on Opportunity Zones, and provides further details on how stakeholders can measure and manage the impact and outcomes they seek to achieve. To access the resource, please go to:  https://ozframework.org/about-index.
Census releases Rural Opportunity Map
The Center on Rural Innovation (CORI) has partnered with Census to create and launch the Rural Opportunity Map, a new publicly available resource designed to help local leaders, community members, funders, and investors understand the landscape and identify opportunities in rural America. There is special emphasis on Opportunity Zones. To access the map, please go to: https://ruralopportunitymap.us/maps/. 

NC Parks & Recreation Trust Fund
APPLICATION DEADLINE: May 1, 2020
DRAFT DEADLINE: April 1, 2020
AWARD AMOUNT: Up to $500,000
MATCH REQUIREMENT: 1:1; at least 50% of eligible, approved project costs
ELIGIBLE APPLICANTS: North Carolina counties and incorporated municipalities
ELIGIBLE ACTIVITIES: For public park and recreational purposes:
1.      Acquire land
2.      Build or renovate facilities
COMPETITIVENESS CRITERIA:  
1.      Degree and quality of planning and public involvement;
2.      Acquisition or conservation of unique natural, cultural, recreational, or scenic resources;
3.      Recreation facilities provided;
4.      Quality of site with respect to its surroundings;
5.      Quality of park land to be acquired;
6.      Applicant's ability to operate and maintain the project;
7.      Inclusion of a new public recreation facility;
8.      Presence or absence of other funding sources;
9.      Population served.
APPLICATION REQUIREMENTS:  
1.      Application form and narratives;
2.      Site plan;
3.      Cost estimate;
4.      Mapping;
5.      Preliminary environmental form;
6.      Public participation and strategic planning documents.
USDA releases Community Facilities Rural Transportation Infrastructure Guidebook
USDA released a new toolkit to highlight how their Community Facilities program can be leveraged to advance the nation’s transportation network across the country. To learn more, please go to:  https://www.rd.usda.gov/files/508_RD_CFRuralTransportation_Guide916193.pdf.

Resource for Hurricane Florence Impacted Communities
EDA partners with IEDC to provide free economic development expertise to Hurricane Florence or Hurricane Michael impacted communities
The U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) has partnered with International Economic Development Council (IEDC) and is offering communities impacted by Hurricane Florence and Hurricane Michael professional economic developers to help support recovery. Professional economic developers will be placed in communities for a one-week period to tackle a pre-defined project identified by the community.  Deliverables can range from recovery plans, to finance plans, to downtown revitalization strategies, marketing or branding strategies, or other work to advance recovery activities in impacted communities. Any community that received a Presidential Declared from Hurricane Florence  or  Hurricane Michael is eligible to request this assistance. Communities may request more than one volunteer. These resources are provided to communities at no cost, but communities are required to define a specific project of focus. To learn more about the program, please contact Dana Crater at (910) 833-7020 or Hillary Sherman at (404) 730-3013 or hsherman@eda.gov .
EDA invites applications for disaster and economic development grant opportunities
The U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) invites applicants to submit applications for several open programs. Under the Public Works program and Economic Adjustment Assistance (EAA) programs, EDA invites applications for construction or non-construction assistance projects that will advance job creation, job retention and private investment.
Additionally, EDA is currently accepting applications to support economic recovery in communities impacted by Hurricane Florence and Tropical Storm Michael for projects that
 
In both opportunities, construction may support the construction of new public assets or the renovation of existing public assets, which include but are not limited to water/sewer lines, tanks, systems, pumps; incubators; access roads; workforce training facilities; port improvements; and other similar projects. Matching share funds are required. For Public Works and Economic Adjustment Assistance Programs the match is generally 50 percent, while for the disaster supplemental funding the match required is 20 percent.
 
To learn more and to discuss potential projects, please contact Hillary Sherman at 404.730.3013 or  hsherman@eda.gov . To access the funding notice and application forms, please go to:  https://www.eda.gov/funding-opportunities/
USDA Rural Utility Service releases policy and application procedures for ReConnect Program
The US Department of Agriculture’s Rural Utilities Service announced the general policy and application procedures for the second round of funding under its broadband program, ReConnect. The Rural Utilities Service has identified $512 million in available loans and grants. Beginning on January 31, 2020, applications can be submitted through the Rural Utilities Service on-line portal through 6pm ET on March 16, 2020. To learn more about the funding program and forthcoming policy changes, please go here: https://www.govinfo.gov/content/pkg/FR-2019-12-12/pdf/2019-26522.pdf.
Division of Soil and Water Conservation is accepting applications for stream debris removal funding related to Hurricanes Michael and Dorian
The Division of Soil and Water Conservation is now accepting applications for stream debris removal funding to address drainage impacts and stream blockages related to Hurricanes Michael and Dorian in 2018 and 2019, respectively. Only communities with a Presidentially Declared Disaster from Michael or Florence are eligible to apply at this time. Funding is available to local government entities, including SWCDs and Drainage/Service Districts, and non-profits. Applications must be submitted by January 10 to be considered for funding. To access application, please go to: https://fs3.formsite.com/ncdswc/dvme8ivju9/form_login.html.
GoldenLeaf Foundation offers disaster recovery resources
GoldenLeaf Foundation has resources available to support repair or replacement of infrastructure and equipment damaged or destroyed by Hurricanes Matthew, Florence, Michael, and Dorian. Eligible applicants are governmental entities and 501(c)(3) entities. To learn more about the funding program and forthcoming policy changes, please go here: https://www.goldenleaf.org/grant-seekers/disaster-recovery-grant-program/.
Regional Happenings
State Awards $1M for Access Projects
More than $1 million in grants have been awarded to eight local governments for public beach and water access improvement projects.
Design Firm Opening New Logistics Center in Goldsboro
Michael Aram, Inc., an internationally renowned luxury design company offering a wide range of craft-based jewelry, tabletop and home furnishings, will create 118 jobs as it relocates a logistics center to Wayne County, Governor Roy Cooper announced Tuesday. The company will invest nearly $5.7 million in the facility, to be located in Goldsboro.
Resolving Concerns through the Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program
This is a series coming out every newsletter. Last month the focus was on "Failing to Provide Necessary Services" this month the problem is " Improper Use of Physical Restraints".
Next Scheduled Meetings
RAAC/STHL Meeting - 1/6/2020
General Membership Board Meeting - 1/9/2020