Delaware National Estuarine Research Reserve
photo by Eric Crossan

This enewsletter from the DNREC Delaware Coastal Training Program (CTP) features resources that are available for Delaware's community leaders and natural resource managers to help us plan smarter for safer and more sustainable communities! 

The roundup includes highlights of upcoming trainings, tools, technical assistance programs, and funding sources from the CTP as well as other local practitioners and technical experts. Please be in touch if you have more updates to share or are looking for additional info! 
Community Technical Assistance Opportunity
Resilient Community Partnership
Improving the management and wise use of land and water resources while promoting compatible economic development of the coastal zone is a key goal of the Delaware Coastal Programs (DCP) of the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control. The Resilient Community Partnership program provides technical assistance and potential funding to plan for and reduce the impacts of coastal hazards related to flooding from sea level rise, coastal storms and climate change through the development of planning strategies at the local level.  

The DCP is soliciting Letters of Interest (maximum of 8 pages, not including letters of support) from state, county, and municipal government entities within the State of Delaware to enter into a Resilient Community Partnership for projects that will support local resilience planning and adaptation activities in Delaware. 

Examples of eligible projects include, but are not limited to:

1. Assessments of vulnerability to flooding due to sea level rise, coastal storms, and nuisance flooding (sunny day flooding),
2. Assessments of local land use ordinances, zoning codes and building codes for the purpose of identifying barriers and opportunities, and recommending improvements,
3. Adaptation plans that outline short and long-term actions that can be taken to reduce vulnerability and increase preparedness, including updating comprehensive land-use plans. Such plans can be drafted for a specific community, town, or region or for a specific type of resource or infrastructure,
4. Design of on-the-ground adaptation projects,
5. Improving communication of risk and adaptation options to affected populations from flooding due to sea level rise, coastal storms, and nuisance flooding.

Limited funding is available for activities that require advanced technical assistance and are required to support the project objectives. The DCP will work with RCP awardee(s) to determine the technical needs of the proposed project and, as appropriate, retain subject matter experts or contractors to meet project requirements and deadlines.  

Applicants are encouraged to communicate with DCP staff to help answer any questions and ensure all submissions address the specified criteria. Examples of previous partnerships can be found at


June 29, 2018 - Letters of Interest due to Delaware Coastal Programs Office

July 18, 2018 - Selected Partnership(s) announced.

For further details regarding the Resilient Community Partnership Program, applicants are encouraged to contact Kelly Valencik (302) 739-6377; 
Training and Classroom Learning Opportunities
Creating a Flood Ready Community
May 11, 2018 9:00 AM - 1:00 PM
University of Delaware Paradee Center, Dover, Delaware

Registration Deadline: May 10, 2018
$50 Registration fee covers lunch and refreshments. Funding assistance is available for a limited number of municipal officials, based on financial need from the DNREC Delaware National Estuarine Research Reserve. Contact Kelly Valencik at for details.

This popular course returns for the 5th year. Planning 201 reviews the multiple sources of flood risks to Delaware communities that can be addressed and mitigated through planning, codes, and ordinances. It begins with an overview of flood
risks, covers floodplain requirements for municipalities, and discusses statewide sea level rise adaptation recommendations applicable at the community level. Local case studies of communities adapting to flood risk, as well as tools and sources of funding and technical assistance, will also be introduced.

Course Topics Include:

• Identifying Community Flood Risks
• Assessing Vulnerability to Flooding
• Strategies for Reducing Flood Vulnerability
• Funding and Technical Assistance

This session qualifies for University of Delaware Institute for Public Administration certificate
credit in the Academy for Excellence in Local Government Leadership, and the Delaware Planning Education Program.
You will learn how to:

  • Identify Community Flood Risks
  • Assess Vulnerability to Flooding
  • Develop Strategies for Reducing Flood Vulnerability
  • Find Funding and Technical Assistance

Who should take this course:

County, municipal and community leaders, regional and municipal planners, floodplain managers, community resilience and adaptation practitioners and more. 

This session qualifies for certificate credit in the UD Academy for Excellence in Local Government Leadership, and the Delaware Planning
Education Program.

Three CM AICP credits will be available for participating American Planning Association professionals.
Planning and Facilitating Collaborative Meetings
Weds. June 13 and Thurs. June 14, 2018
St. Jones Reserve Coastal Training Center, Dover, Del.

Registration Deadline: Monday, June 4, 2018
$50 Registration fee covers lunch and refreshments.

This two day instructor-led course from the NOAA Office of Coastal Management is designed to increase participants’ ability to plan and facilitate a meeting (or a series of meetings) that minimize conflict and enhance problem solving.

Collaboration is often cited as a good way to address coastal resource management issues, but the collaborative process is complicated, requiring a systematic approach. This course provides the skills and tools to design and implement collaborative approaches. The skills will be useful even when attending, but not running, a collaborative meeting. 
You will learn how to:

  • Determine if a collaborative process is appropriate
  • Select people with the skills needed to fit each meeting role
  • Learn and practice facilitation skills
  • Use appropriate process tools and techniques to address the meeting objectives
  • Manage conflict in meetings by understanding group dynamics
  • Identify disruptive behaviors in group processes and practice strategies to deal with them

Who should take this course:

County, municipal and community leaders, regional and municipal planners, state agency staff, natural resource managers, non-profit and academic-based collaborative supporters & organizers, and more. 
Mark Your Calendar for More Great Trainings Coming in 2018!
Community Climate Adaptation
Tues. July 10 - Weds. July 11, 2018
Held in partnership with Delaware Sea Grant. Communities increasingly realize the need for adaptation strategies, but many are unsure where to begin. This intensive and interactive course provides individuals with a thorough grounding and practical skills for incorporating adaptation strategies into planning processes. AICP credits will be available for participating American Planning Association professionals.

Participants will learn how to:
  • Apply the basic elements of an adaptation planning framework to organize future preparedness efforts,
  • Translate climate science into impacts on local community assets and practice compiling a vulnerability assessment,
  • Identify, compare, and prioritize locally relevant adaptation strategies and actions,
  • Describe implementation options for different strategies.
Planning Effective Projects
Late Summer 2018

In this two-day interactive instructor-led course from the NOAA Office of Coastal Management you will learn how to conduct a project assessment, use a logic model to plan a new project or reassess a current one, and prepare for a meaningful evaluation. Attend this course to learn project planning practices that help you build on accountability and strategic thinking, reveal assumptions, and create a targeted effort with measurable results.Great for those planning and implementing grant projects!

Note: this course is a prerequisite for the Planning for Meaningful Evaluation training below
Planning for Meaningful Evaluation
Weds. September 26 - Thurs. Sept. 27, 2018

Do you ever ask yourself, “Is my program designed to reach its goals?” or “How do I measure the performance of my existing program?” We would like to help you answer those questions.

This training addresses in detail the increasing demand for evidence of program accountability and impact by preparing participants for a meaningful evaluation. Participants will actively engage in creating a comprehensive evaluation plan. The purpose of the training is to provide an in depth understanding of the elements of evaluation, so that participants are able to make informed choices to create fundamentally sound evaluation plans for existing or longstanding programs.
Logic modeling is a concept at the heart of the effective program design and meaningful evaluation techniques taught in course. Participants in the workshop will be expected to understand logic modeling and are encouraged to bring a working or draft logic model built for your program with you to use during the workshop.
This workshop requires previous training in the development and use of logic models. If you have attended NOAA’s Planning Effective Projects workshop or you have other training in the development and use of logic models then you may attend this workshop.
Resources for Practitioners & Communities
Green Infrastructure Effectiveness Database

Search this online database of literature sources containing information on the effectiveness of green infrastructure to reduce the impacts of coastal hazards, such as inundation and erosion from tropical storms and cyclones, more frequent precipitation events, and sea level rise. The database contains records from a wide range of sources, such as peer-reviewed journals, online tools, and gray literature, and includes information on 32 different coastal green infrastructure types.

The green infrastructure techniques referenced cover a full range of approaches to coastal management, including natural, nature-based (e.g., low-impact development), structural, and policies.
Full resource guide is available here:
Funding Opportunities
U.S. Department of Transportation Grant Program Funding Announcement: BUILD Transportation Program
Sending along a new funding opportunity through the U.S. Department of Transportation that encourages the use of green infrastructure to protect and enhance transportation corridors. There's a series of webinars to help folks know how to compete for funding as well as current pilot projects.

The Better Utilizing Investments to Leverage Development (BUILD) Transportation Discretionary Grants program replaces the pre-existing TIGER grant program. BUILD grants support investments in surface transportation infrastructure (roads, bridges, transit, rail, ports or intermodal transportation) and are to be awarded on a competitive basis for projects that will have a significant local or regional impact. Applicants must describe how their projects would provide long-term benefits in safety, partnership, innovation, quality of life, state of good repair, economic competitiveness, and environmental protection (including how the project may reduce stormwater runoff). BUILD grants funding can be distributed to any public entity, including local governments, counties, port authorities, tribal governments, and Metropolitan Planning Organizations. DOT intends to award a greater share of BUILD Transportation grant funding to projects located in rural areas that align well with the selection criteria than to such projects in urban areas.
Additional details, including selection criteria, can be found in the Notice of Funding Opportunity

The DOT is hosting a series of webinars during the FY 2018 BUILD grant application process. A webinar on how to compete for BUILD Transportation Grants for all applicants will be held on Thursday, May 24; a webinar for rural and tribal applicants will be held on Tuesday, May 29; and a webinar on how to prepare a benefit cost analysis for a BUILD application will be held on Thursday, May 31.

The deadline to submit an application for the FY 2018 BUILD Transportation Discretionary Grants program is July 19, 2018.

For complete information, please visit
Find additional grant opportunities by searching the Delaware Database for Funding Resilient Communities!

Storm surges, nor’easters, heavy precipitation events, and sea level rise threaten municipalities around the state, and climate models predict that these hazards will increase in severity and frequency in the future. Financial assistance programs are available to support the implementation of projects to prepare for and adapt to these threats. The Institute for Public Administration (IPA) at the University of Delaware, with support from DNREC Delaware Coastal Programs office, compiled relevant financial assistance programs into a searchable web database for Delaware’s local governments. 
Guide to using the database 
As a part of our mission, the Delaware National Estuarine Research Reserve is committed to promoting informed decision making through the Delaware Coastal Training Program. This program addresses critical coastal resource management issues in Delaware by providing current scientific information, access to technologies and skill-building opportunities to Delawareans responsible for making decisions about the state's coastal resources. 

Requests for submittal: Have a great resource, training, or program that you want to share with Delaware community leaders and natural resources managers to help make our communities safer and more sustainable? Please submit information for inclusion in this e-newsletter to the contact below.
Kelly Valencik | Delaware National Estuarine Research Reserve | 302-739-6377