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

FYI, The South Alabama Regional Planning Commission was created by an  Act of the Alabama Legislature in the early 1960's. There are twelve Regional Planning Commissions within the State of Alabama and all are governed by various duties and functions. Our region, Region 8, is comprised of Mobile, Baldwin and Escambia counties. SARPC has five (5) departments: Administrative Services, headed by Robbie Young; Community Planning, headed by Diane Burnett; Area Agency on Aging, headed by Julie McGee; Employment and Economic Development Services, headed by  Terri Pringle  and Transportation Planning, headed by Kevin Harrison. Please don't hesitate to contact any of us at 251-433-6541 or me at rrhodes@sarpc.org if we can be of service. 


John F. "Rickey" Rhodes


M obile MPO Updates

There will be a Mobile MPO Policy Board meeting on August 21, 2019 at 10:00 AM in the SARPC Board room on the First Floor of the GMO Building. Prior to that meeting, there will be a Technical Coordinating / Citizens Advisory (TCC/CAC) meeting on July 31, 2019 at 10:00 AM in the Transportation Dept of SARPC on the second Floor of the GMO Building. There are couple of items on the agenda that include the FY 2020 Unified Planning Work Program ( UPWP ) and the FY 2020-2023 Transportation Improvement Program ( TIP ).  Both of the UPWP and the TIP are out for public review at 43 places around Mobile County. The UPWP is essentially the planning budget for 2020, and the TIP is a listing of all the federally surface transportation projects for years 2020-2023; the I-10 Mobile River Bridge is included in that listing.  If you have any questions prior to any of these meetings, please do not hesitate to give us a call.
M PO 101

The South Alabama Regional Planning Commission and The Eastern Shore MPO are jointly conducting a class for our committee members. If you are a committee member of the Bicycle Pedestrian Advisory Committee, Citizens Advisory Committee, Technical Advisory Committee, or MPO Policy Board for either the Mobile MPO or the Eastern Shore MPO, please consider attending this free class. Lunch is provided but seating is limited and registration is required (below). Seats are filling up fast.

Registration is  HERE

Freight Data
APM Terminals has provided us with their third quarterly survey report. Just as last quarter, for one day APM Terminals had on-board tablets for drivers to answer a series of questions in terms of where they came from and where they are going.  APM Terminals will continue to gather this information quarterly for our benefit of validating truck data for the travel demand forecasting model. This third survey report had 88% of trucker visits answering the survey, the best percentage yet, which helps refine our understanding of container truck trip patterns in the area.  See more   HERE .

Transportation Improvement Program( TIP)

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


Funding & Resource Announcement s

Access to Capital

Treasury Department Opens the FY 2019 Funding Round for the Capital Magnet Fund

The U.S. Department of the Treasury's Community Development Financial Institutions Fund (CDFI Fund) today opened the fiscal year (FY) 2019 funding round for the Capital Magnet Fund. Through the Capital Magnet Fund, the CDFI Fund competitively awards funds to CDFIs and qualified non-profit housing organizations. These awards can be used to finance affordable housing activities, as well as related economic development activities and community service facilities. The objective is to attract private capital to economically distressed communities, including underserved rural areas. Funding for the Capital Magnet Fund comes from allocations made by the Government-Sponsored Enterprises Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and varies from year to year.
The CDFI Fund plans to provide up to $130.8 million in awards for the FY 2019 round. Capital Magnet Fund recipients are able to utilize these funds for financing activities such as affordable housing funds, economic development funds, loan loss reserves, revolving loan funds, risk-sharing loans, and loan guarantees. For more info, see www.cdfifund.gov/cmf

Innovation and Entreprenuership

Prize Competition to Develop Wave Energy Powered Water Systems -Apply
by Sep 6.
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has officially opened the first stage of the Waves to Water Prize, which seeks to accelerate the development of wave energy-powered desalination systems and launch novel technologies to address critical water security challenges. The prize is divided into four stages, and the first concept stage is now open for applications through September 6, 2019.

The Waves to Water Prize is the first prize under the Water Security Grand Challenge, a White House-initiated, DOE-led framework to advance transformational technology and innovation to meet the global need for safe, secure, and affordable water. The Waves to Water prize is led by the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy's (EERE) Water Power Technologies Office (WPTO) and administered by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) on the American-Made Challenges platform.

The Natural Climate Solutions Accelerator supports projects with potential to substantially increase the use of natural climate solutions throughout the United States. The focus is on helping to kick-start innovative and scalable approaches to capturing greenhouse gas emissions by using natural and working lands. The program strives to support and develop a portfolio of proven approaches and mechanisms to deploying natural solutions that landowners, state and federal governments, corporations, and other climate leaders can efficiently implement on a broad scale. 
August 16, 2019


The Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2019 appropriated $292,730,000 for the Port Infrastructure Development Program to make grants to improve port facilities at coastal seaports. The Department of Transportation has announced the availability of funding for grants under this program and establishes selection criteria and application requirements. The Act directed that $92,730,000 of the appropriated funds shall be for grants to the 15 coastal seaports that handled the greatest number of loaded foreign and domestic twenty-foot equivalent units of containerized cargo in 2016, as identified by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.   Funds for the Port Infrastructure Development Program are to be awarded as discretionary grants on a competitive basis for projects that will improve the safety, efficiency, or reliability of the movement of goods into, out of, around, or within a coastal seaport, as well as the unloading and loading of cargo at a coastal seaport. All Port Infrastructure Development Program funding grant recipients must meet all applicable Federal requirements, including the Buy American Act. The purpose of this notice is to solicit applications for Port Infrastructure  Development Program. Applications must be submitted September 16, 2019.


DOL Funding for Apprenticeships. Apply by Sept 24.

The Department of Labor Employment Training Administration has announced a new solicitation to award up to $100 million in grant funds authorized by Section 414(c) of the American Competitiveness and Workforce Improvement Act of 1998 (ACWIA) for the Apprenticeships: Closing the Skills Gap grant program. 

The Department intends to fund up to 30 apprenticeship grants, with awards ranging from $500,000 to $6 million. Grants may be local/regional, statewide, or national in scale, and funding will depend on the proposed geographic scope of the apprenticeship project.  Grant funds will be awarded to apprenticeship partnerships of public- and private-sector entities, which together will develop and implement new apprenticeship models or expand existing apprenticeship programs.  The full solicitation will be published on grants.gov today. 

This Announcement solicits applications for the Apprenticeships: Closing the Skills Gap grant program.  The purpose of this program is to promote apprenticeships as a significant workforce solution in filling current middle- and high-skilled job vacancies and closing the skills gap between employer workforce needs and the skills of the current workforce.  The overarching goals of this grant program are threefold: (1) to accelerate the expansion of apprenticeships to new industry sectors and occupations, such as cybersecurity and those involving artificial intelligence; (2) to promote the large-scale expansion of apprenticeships across the nation to a range of employers, including small- and medium-sized employers; and (3) to increase apprenticeship opportunities for all Americans.
View the announcement on Grants.gov  HERE.

Reports, Tools and Data

Broadband Resources: Searchable Database of 50 Federal Programs in 12 Agencies
NTIA has developed a new  searchable database of 50 federal broadband programs, spanning a dozen federal agencies with billions of dollars for broadband grants, loans and other resources. The database, created with help of participating federal agencies, fulfills a goal set out in the American Broadband Initiative  announced in February to make it easier for community leaders to find federal funding and permitting information. Applicants can search for programs by agency, program purpose and eligible recipients. The inventory includes well-known infrastructure efforts at USDA and FCC, as well as other programs from ARC, EDA, HUD and other agencies that offer grants and loans for targeted purposes or specific regions of the country. To search or download the guide visit  HERE.

Opportunity Zones: Report Lists Federal Programs that Target OZs.  The White House Opportunity Council issued a Report that Lists Federal Programs That Support Opportunity Zones Click here to see a list of over   50 programs   that federal agencies have already taken action to better target resources to Opportunity Zones. This list will continue to be updated and augmented as additional resources become available, including the new Investment Priority that EDA recently added for projects based in or benefitting Opportunity Zones. See EDA's June 12, 2019 press release for more information.

Disaster Recovery Resources & Info

Primary site for Disaster Recovery Assistance: https://www.disasterassistance.gov /

Where to Find Federal Disaster Declarations
Division A Regionalized Hazard Mitigation Plan
  • The Regionalized Plan will include all eight (8) counties in Division A (providing all counties participate).
  • Alabama Tombigbee Regional Commission (ATRC) will work with the five (5) counties in ATRC's region to create part of the Plan and staff from the South Alabama Regional Planning Commission (SARPC) will work with the three (3) counties in SARPC's region to create part of the Plan.
  • SARPC will be the lead agency for the project.
  • The Plan will be created in two (2) phases in order to meet the expiration dates of all the county's plans.
  • Phase I of the Plan will only include Clarke and Conecuh counties. ATRC will be coordinating with these two counties in creating this phase of the Plan.
  • Phase I will begin when funding is received and must be completed and FEMA approved by August 1, 2020.
  • Phase II of the Plan will include the remaining six (6) counties of Division A, which are Choctaw, Washington, Monroe, Mobile, Baldwin, and Escambia.
  • SARPC will be coordinating with Baldwin, Escambia, and Mobile counties and ATRC will be coordinating with Choctaw, Washington, and Monroe counties in creating Phase II of the Plan.
  • A start date on Phase II of the Plan will be determined after an initial meeting is scheduled with the counties and the RPCs. Phase II must be completed and FEMA approved by May 2021.
  • Participation in the Regionalized Plan is not mandatory. However, funding is not available to counties for planning if a county chooses not to participate.
  • A maximum of $15,000 per county will be requested in the application, however, we may receive a lesser amount after it is determined how many counties will be participating in all of the regionalized plans.
  • A match of 25% from the counties will be required as cash or In-kind. A Resolution from the County Commissions will be required once the funding is received.
  • SARPC will create and submit the application for all eight counties by July 25, 2019.
  • The application requires a letter of support from each county EMA Director so the local EMAs are aware of the partnership and are in support of the regionalized plan. SARPC will notify each county once the application has been submitted.
Please don't hesitate to contact Diane Burnett at dburnett@sarpc.org if you have questions.
Senior Community Service Employment Program (SCSEP)

The Senior Community Service Employment Program (SCSEP) promotes economic self-sufficiency for older individuals who are working to achieve employment. The program provides useful part-time community service assignments while promoting transition to unsubsidized employment. The program serves persons 55 and older who qualify by income.

We are pleased to announce that two new Host Agencies have joined us. They are the Boy Scouts of America/Mobile Area Council in Mobile County and the Bay Minette Public Library.

SCSEP also provides great tools and opportunities for participants. At the last participant quarterly meeting a 2020 Census Bureau representative, David Hurst, shared information regarding the importance of completing the Census and included information on how to apply for employment.
David Hurst, 2020 Census Bureau Representative, and Terri Pringle, SCSEP Director.

Mature Staffing Service (MSS)

Staff members are focused to provide qualified and dependable employees to non-profit organizations and government entities seeking employees. MSS can provide: assistance in locating the right talent, handling all payroll processes which include Worker's Compensation coverage, payroll taxes (federal and state), etc. MSS takes the work and the risk while the employer gets to focus on other daily tasks.

One of our clients hired two of our MSS temps permanently on July 1st. This is great news for the workers and agency.  

HURRICANE SEASON is upon us. We have coordinated with Baldwin County Commission's EMA and enrolled approximately 60 Shelter Workers for disaster evacuation facilities for the County in the event of shelter activation.
BACK TO SCHOOL for Baldwin County August 14th.
Baldwin County Board of Education's After School Childcare Meeting is scheduled for July 31st. MSS is on the agenda to discuss our program and enroll new workers for the new 2019-2020 After School Program. We currently have approximately 250 workers enrolled in the After School Childcare Program.
If you're interested in learning more about our staffing service, please call Shannon Raley  (251-706-4639).
Community Involvement, Events, Meetings and Training

EEDS staff participates in different community events, meetings and training as well. Just to highlight a few:
Tara Holland enjoys the community involvement of attending Chamber luncheons and the Mobile County Municipal Association monthly meetings. She uses this opportunity to share information about all the Employment and Economic Development Department programs with mayors and elected officials.

On July 25th staff attended the "Media Appreciation Lunch Honoring Mel Showers".
Terri Pringle (back) is pictured with Mr. Showers above .
Shannon Raley is a member of the Mobile Society for Human Resources (SHRM). She attends meetings every second Friday of the month. The local SHRM chapter helps build relationships and contacts with other local companies while helping our department to stay up to date on state and local labor market conditions and issues. She will also be attending the Gulf Coast Conference on November 8th.

Alyssa Nelson attends monthly PRCA meetings. She recently attended the annual PRCA ToolKit Conference. The topic for the conference was  "Back to the Basics with Building Blocks for Successful Public Relations Strategies" . Mrs. Nelson also attended the Association for Non Profit Summit at the University of South Alabama on July 24 th .

In addition to these the Economic Development team is very involved in the Mobile and Baldwin Chamber of Commerce marketing meetings, task force, and various councils.

We are committed to reaching all members of our community to inform them about our SCSEP, MSS and RLF programs. Call us at 251-652-0585 for more information.


Living Well Alabama Workshop held in Mobile and Baldwin Counties

Ralph Sandler and Alice Bahr (back row, left), volunteers with the Area Agency on Aging, taught a Living Well Alabama: Chronic Disease Self-Management class at Somerby of Mobile, pictured is class graduation on June 28 th .

Steve Korham (back row left) and Don Wheater (back row, right), volunteers with the Area Agency on Aging, taught a Living Well Alabama: Chronic Disease Self-Management class at the Parkway (DIP) Senior Center, pictured is class graduation on June 27 th .
Classes are currently being held in Daphne and a Spanish language class at the Providence Ascension Center.  An upcoming class will be held on Providence Hospital beginning September 13 th .  For information contact Carol Massey at 251-445-3823 or

SARPC's SHIP Coordinator presents at July 24-25 RSA Retirement Preparation Seminars in Mobile
When local government employees from our cities, counties and public authorities attend the Retirement Preparation Seminar held by the Retirement System of Alabama, they receive an hour of education from SARPC's State Health Insurance Program (SHIP).  The Area Agency on Aging's SHIP program helps employees understand how Medicare will affect their insurance options at age 65 when they retire, including how Medicare will coordinate with their retiree health plans and questions about Medicare supplements, issues most local government employees need to understand.  However, employees don't have to wait until a RSA seminar is held in their county.  HR departments and benefits counselors for local governments and public agencies that participate in ERS can contact our agency at any time to schedule a SHIP workshop for their employees.  Local governments in Mobile, Baldwin and Escambia counties are invited to contact James Roberson, SHIP Coordinator at SARPC's Area Agency on Aging at 251-706-4617 or jroberson@sarpc.org.

Governor Ivey Appoints New Senior Services Commissioner

Commissioner Brown works with the 13 regional Area Agencies on Aging in Alabama who provide services to older adults locally.  SARPC's Area Agency on Aging services Baldwin, Escambia and Mobile Counties, who have an estimated 60+ population of 132.465 representing 13.7% of the older adult population in Alabama.  Julie McGee, AAA Director, indicated she has met with Commissioner Brown to discuss priority concerns,  and looks forward to working with Commissioner Brown to address the needs of our region's citizens. Article  HERE.

Spanish Living Well Alabama Workshop

Senior Expo

Grandparents Appreciation Day

Upcoming Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Workshops
July 16, 2019 @ 12 - 1:30 PM - Semmes Senior Center
August 8, 2019 @ 12:00 - 2:00PM - Crawford Baptist Church
September - Grandparent Appreciation Day Event
July 25, 2019 @ 11:00 AM - TBA
August 29, 2019 @11:00 AM - Accordia Health Services - Pending
September - Grandparent Appreciation Day Event
June 6, 2019 @ 10:00AM - Gulf Shores United Methodist Church
July   TBA (due to July 4th holiday)
August 1, 2019 @ 10:00 AM
September 5, 2019 @ 10:00 AM
August 6, 2019 @ 9:00 AM - Zion Fountain AME Church, Brewton
August 15, 2019 @11:30 AM - East Brewton Senior Center.
September - Grandparent Appreciation Day Event

August 6, 2019 @ 2:00PM - Oakdale Community Center's Embassy
August 13, 2019 @ 2:00PM - Emerson Gardens
September - Grandparent Appreciation Day Event
Grandparent Appreciation Day - Thursday, September 12, 2019
- Mobile Museum of Art

Alabama Silver-Haired Legislators

Monday, August 19, 2019 at 10:00 AM - GM&O Building
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