LRCOG News & Updates
Our Mission
"In its dedication to regional excellence, the Lumber River Council of Governments is
proactive in identifying local and regional needs and the resources to address
those needs in an effective and fair manner."

County Response Rates
As of June 17, 2020

National Self-Response- 61.5%
NC Self-Response- 57.8%
Bladen County- 44.1%
Hoke County- 52.9%
Richmond County- 49.0%
Robeson County- 45.0%
Scotland County- 52.2%
June 15th was Elder
Abuse Awareness Day
President Trump held a Roundtable Discussion on Fighting for America’s Seniors
North Carolina
Safer At Home Phase 2:
NCDHHS Announces $26 Million to Help Mitigate the Economic Disruption of COVID-19, Including Assistance for Families Facing Eviction
North Carolina Summer Nutrition Programs Offer Free, Healthy Meals for Children During the Coronavirus Pandemic
COVID-19 North Carolina Dashboard

Knowing when to dial up or down measures that slow the spread of the virus depends on North Carolina’s testing, tracing and trends. The dashboard provides an overview on the metrics and capacities that the state is following.
Count on Me NC
Count on Me NC provides free online training to protect customers and employees in Phase 2 and beyond
New Testing Tools for Everyone to Use
Holding Public Meetings in Accordance with Senate Bill 704

The US House of Representatives is currently considering the "Flexibility for Localities and Eligibility Expansion Act of 2020" H.R. 6652. This bill would provide local governments the opportunity to utilize COVID-19 relief funds to help offset lost revenues that occurred during the COVID-19 pandemic.
How to Apply
A Training for the CDBG-Infrastructure Program
June 22, 2020, from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. ( Via WebEx)
Topics include:
  • Determining low to moderate income percentage during COVID-19
  • Pointers on data and data sources needed to document need in the project area
  • Details needed in planning documents to receive points in the application.

To Sign Up: Contact Colleen Simmons at , and provide your name, email address and phone number. You will receive an emailed link to the meeting once you have registered.

Approximately $25.5 million is anticipated to be available for funding.
National Association on Counties

NEW Webinar Series on Health Equity and Social Solidarity in the Time of Pandemic: Strategies for COVID-19 Response and Recovery

The series highlights the challenges communities are facing as they respond to COVID-19 and its impacts and serves as an opportunity for community leaders across the nation to learn from lead researchers, policymakers and each other.

Exploring Guaranteed Income as a Strategy to Address Income Inequality

COVID-19: Disproportionate Impact on Black Communities
Thursday, June 25 at 3pm ET

COVID-19: Disproportionate Impact on Tribal Nations
Thursday, July 9 at 3pm ET

US COVID-19 Mapping: Bridging Data with Historical Context
Tuesday, July 21 at 3pm ET

Responding to Crisis in the Latino Population with an Equity Lens
Thursday, August 13 at 3pm ET
House Passes Local Utility Viability Bill

A bill that would provide $9 million in non-recurring state funds, creating a new grant program called the Viable Utility Reserve, passed the state House this week and awaits Senate action. The program in HB 1087 would support financially distressed public water and wastewater systems by facilitating viable operations and encouraging regionalization.
160D Update and New Effective Date
David W. Owens | UNC School of Government

The General Assembly gave final approval to the General Statutes Commission bill that incorporates all the 2019 enacted legislation that affected statutes merged into Ch. 160D. This bill, S. 720, also makes a number of modest clarifying and technical fixes to Chapter 160D. The bill was sent to the Governor for approval.

The bill will make 160D effective upon the effective date of S. 720. So if the Governor signs S. 720 in the next week or so, 160D will become effective on that date. The COVID-19 bill enacted in May of this year delayed the effective date of Chapter 160D until August 1, 2021 in case the General Assembly did not have time to get to this General Statutes Commission bill. Since the General Assembly did get to the GSC bill, the COVID-19 delay is being repealed and replaced by this new effective date. While this legislation makes Chapter 160D effective this month, it also recognizes that some local governments will need additional time to update their ordinances given the delays and disruptions of the COVID-19 pandemic. Therefore this bill gives local governments an extra six months, should it be needed, to bring their regulations into conformity with Chapter 160D. Those local governments that are ready to act can do so immediately, but cities and counties can take until July 1, 2021 to complete their ordinance updates if need be. Since local ordinances will be amended at various times over the next year to conform with Chapter 160D, this law provides that valid local government development regulations that are in effect now remain in effect, but local governments are directed to amend them to conform on or before July 1. 2021. It further provides that Chapter 160D applies to local government development regulation decisions made on or after the earlier of: (i) the effective date of the amendments to local development regulations made to conform to the provisions of Chapter 160D or (ii) July 1, 2021. So the provisions of Chapter 160D will be phased in around the state as each local government adopts its ordinance updates, with a deadline of July 1, 2021 for that to happen.
Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)
Get the latest information on COVID-19 in North Carolina
North Carolina Launches a Statewide COVID-19 Website
The state has launched a new website to serve as a portal for all COVID-19 across state government.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
World Health Organization (WHO)
NC  2-1-1
Get up to date information on COVID-19

NC 2-1-1 is an information and referral service provided by United Way of North Carolina. Accessible via an easy-to-remember, three-digit number, families and individuals can call to obtain free and confidential information on health and human services and resources within their community.
Text COVIDNC to 898-211 for announcements and updates
Dial 2-1-1 or 888-892-1162 Available 24 hours a day 7 days a week
Mental Health Support

Call Hope 4 NC at 855-587-3463
Available 24 hours a day 7 days a week
COVID-19 Rumors and Misinformation

This website is a curated collection of tools and materials that can guide and provide examples on how to understand, track, address rumors and misinformation around COVID-19.
NC Pandemic Recovery Office (NCPRO)

The North Carolina Pandemic Recovery Office (NCPRO) will oversee and coordinate the state’s fiscal response to the COVID-19 pandemic as we recover stronger, more resolved, and more resilient.

Additional Resources:

Topics include:
  • Determining low to moderate income percentage during COVID-19
  • Pointers on data and data sources needed to document need in the project area
  • Details needed in planning documents to receive points in the application.

To Sign Up: Contact Colleen Simmons at , and provide your name, email address and phone number. You will receive an emailed link to the meeting once you have registered.

Approximately $25.5 million is anticipated to be available for funding.
Updated Coronavirus Relief Fund
Frequently Asked Questions
Funding Opportunities
US Economic Development Administration (EDA) CARES Act Recovery Assistance

EDA has released funding made available through the CARES ACT to facilitate economic recovery.
There is robust demand. Therefore, applicants are strongly encouraged to submit applications as soon as possible.
Requirements for Complete CARES Act Application
Institute for Emerging Issues (IEI) BAND-NC Grant
The Institute for Emerging Issues at NC State (IEI) in partnership with the Broadband Infrastructure Office at the NC Department of Information Technology, is addressing the digital divide across NC through a new program called “Building a New Digital Economy” (BAND-NC). BAND-NC will provide rapid-response community innovation mini-grants to communities across the state.
Emergency Supplemental Historic Preservation Fund (ESHPF) Disaster Assistance Grants for Historic Resources

Who May Apply For Grants
Local governmental units (including Councils of Government) and non-profit organizations can apply to use the Florence and Michael ESHPF Disaster Relief Grants. 
Your project must be located in one of the 61 eligible counties and involve properties listed in or eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places.
What is Grant Funding For 
  • Architectural and archaeological survey and inventory of historic resources to determine eligibility, degree of damage, and provide preparedness for future disasters.
  • Planning (known as pre-development) activities toward future stabilization and/or repair of damaged historic properties.
  • Brick and mortar work (known as development) to stabilize and/or repair damaged historic properties.
  • The execution of projects to mitigate the threat of damage to eligible historic properties from future natural disasters.

Request An Application Package 

Application packages can be requested by email at . The package consists of a guide to completing the application and the application form.

The application deadline is August 14, 2020 at 4 p.m.
Guide to Federal COVID-19 Funding for Local Governments
USDA Announces Cooperative Agreements for Community Compost and Food Waste Reduction

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) today announced the availability of $900,000 for local governments to host a Community Compost and Food Waste Reduction (CCFWR) pilot project for fiscal year (FY) 2020. The cooperative agreements will support projects that develop and test strategies for planning and implementing municipal compost plans and food waste reduction plans. The agreements are offered through USDA’s Office of Urban Agriculture and Innovative Production.
USDA Announces Grants for Urban Agriculture and Innovative Production

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) today announced the availability of $3 million for grants through its new Office of Urban Agriculture and Innovative Production. The competitive grants will support the development of urban agriculture and innovative production projects through two categories, Planning Projects and Implementation Projects. USDA will accept applications on until midnight July 6, 2020.
SBA Disaster Assistance in Response to the Coronavirus

The SBA has approved the North Carolina Governor’s request for a disaster declaration, and you may begin the application process. Eligible applicants may now apply for economic injury disaster loans (EIDLs) as a result of the ongoing effects of COVID-19.
Golden LEAF receives $125M in funding to support NC COVID-19 Rapid Recovery Loan Program
Funding will provide loans to help small businesses suffering economic losses related to Coronavirus (COVID-19)

The NC COVID-19 Rapid Recovery Loan Program was launched on March 24 with an initial allocation of $15 million provided by Golden LEAF. Applications were quickly submitted well in excess of the available funding. Golden LEAF worked with the Office of Governor Roy Cooper and leadership of the North Carolina General Assembly to appropriate the additional funds to support this program and address identified demand. With this additional funding in place, applications will continue to be processed on a first-come, first-served basis.
FEMA Public Assistance Program

All North Carolina local governments and certain nonprofits are eligible to apply to the FEMA Public Assistance Program for FEMA reimbursement to assist with emergency expenses related to responding to COVID-19.  The NC Division of Emergency Management and the UNC School of Government have partnered to produce an on-demand applicant briefing webinar that gives instructions on how to register for FEMA reimbursement, information on general reimbursement eligibility of COVID-19 expenses, tips on documenting expenses, and COVID-19 federal procurement requirements.

A link to the free on-demand applicant briefing webinar, a pdf of the briefing presentation slides, and a summary of the FEMA Public Assistance program is available at both websites below:  

The first step toward applying for FEMA reimbursement of eligible COVID-19 expenses is to register your organization in the FEMA Grants Portal .  

All local governments and nonprofits (incorporated as a 501(c), (d), or (e) in the state are encouraged to register in the FEMA Grants Portal. Even if your organization is not certain whether you have COVID-19 expenses that are eligible for FEMA reimbursement, you are encouraged to register - you cannot apply for FEMA reimbursement without being registered in the Grants Portal and completing a few simple registration forms. This very simple registration process is explained in the on-demand briefing webinar. 

Easy instructions to get started are also available
U.S. Department of Homeland Security Announces $10 Million in FY20 Funding Availability for Targeted Violence and Terrorism Prevention Grant Programs
FY 2020 EDA Public Works and Economic Adjustment Assistance Programs including CARES Act Funding
Suggested Reads
How Cities Are Expanding Food Access During The Pandemic

Lumber River Council of Governments | Phone: 910-618-5533 | Fax: 910-521-7556