Creating Regional Solutions Since 1971
February 2021
News
NC Extends Modified Stay At Home Order as Numbers Begin to Stabilize in an Effort to Continue to Slow the Spread

Governor Cooper announced that he will be extending the Modified Stay at Home Order through February 28th, 2021 with Executive Order 189
 
Governor Cooper is also extending the sale of “to-go” or delivery of mixed beverages through March 31st, 2021 with Executive Order 190.

The extension of Executive Order No. 191 will help families have the ability to stay in their homes, a critical component of slowing the spread of the virus. 
 
Read Executive Order No. 189 and the FAQs.
Read Executive Order No. 191 and the FAQs
NCDHHS Launches “Find My Vaccine Group” to Help North Carolinians Know When They Have a Spot to Take Their Shot

The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services launched a new online tool to help North Carolinians know when they will be eligible to get their vaccine. Find My Vaccine Group walks users through a series of questions to determine which vaccine group they are in. People can then sign up to be notified when their group can get vaccinated.

“Given the very limited supplies we currently have, there may be wait times, but every North Carolinian has a spot. A spot for accurate information. A spot in line. A spot to take their shot,” said NCDHHS Secretary Mandy K. Cohen, MD.

North Carolina is currently vaccinating people in Groups 1 and 2, which include health care workers, long-term care staff and residents, and people 65 and older. Group 3 will include frontline essential workers; Group 4 will include adults at high risk for exposure and increased risk of severe illness; and Group 5 will include everyone. Detailed information about each group is online at YourShotYourSpot.nc.gov.

Until the country begins to get a head of the pandemic, the CDC says everyone should keep wearing a mask, waiting at least six feet apart and washing hands often. North Carolina continues to have high rates of cases, hospitalizations and the percent of tests that are positive. A secretarial directive remains in effect. People should stay home and only leave for essential purposes such as buying food, accessing health care, and going to school or work.

For more information and to find your vaccine group, visit findmygroup.nc.gov.
IMPORTANT UPCOMING DEADLINE

February 15 - COVID Impact Reports (a new, one-time report required under Session Law 2020-3). The finance officer of each county, municipality, water district or authority, sewer district or authority, sanitary district, and metropolitan sewage district must submit this report. For information and a complete list of units subject to this reporting requirement, please see our COVID Impact Report webpage or contact CIR@nctreasurer.com.

A complete list of all reports due to the LGC, their deadlines, and references to statutes and LGC resources is available on the LGC Reporting Requirements and Due Dates webpage
The Great Migration? Small Town Economics and a COVID-19 Population Reshuffle

Small towns may not be able to compete with large and mid-sized cities in terms of major amenities, but small towns have unique assets on which they could capitalize. Place-based strategies contribute to the development of the community and may make that community more attractive for remote workers. Prior to the pandemic, workers craved communities with peer support groups and places to foster creativity. Co-working spaces and other entrepreneurial supports can help develop rural communities into thriving areas full of creative connections.
The budget package passed by Congress in December rectified an oversight from the earlier CARES Act: Making U.S. citizens and legal immigrants in mixed-status families eligible for COVID-19-relief payments. 

In a new commentary, Migration Policy Institute (MPI) researchers estimate that nearly 3 million U.S.-citizen and legal-immigrant adults and children with an unauthorized immigrant spouse or parent are eligible for stimulus of up to $600 under the December legislation, as well as retroactive CARES Act payments of up to $1,200 per person. 
With the incoming Biden administration and Congress likely poised to consider increasing the $600 checks, perhaps to as much as $2,000, the MPI data showing affected populations at U.S. and state levels could be a useful resource. The researchers note some populations remain uncovered, including 2.2 million U.S.-citizen and legal-immigrant children whose parents are both unauthorized immigrants. 

“Recent extensions of aid to U.S. citizens and legal immigrants in mixed-status families enjoyed bipartisan support,” write authors Julia Gelatt, Randy Capps, and Michael Fix. “ Further expansions of assistance would account for a small fraction of the total cost of any future stimulus package and would accrue major benefits to millions of U.S.-citizen children and—through family spending on essential needs—the communities in which they live.”

New Aspen Institute Resource: Equitable Recovery and Resilience in Rural America

In December 2020, Aspen Institute Community Strategies Group published Equitable Recovery and Resilience in Rural America, a Thrive Rural brief authored by Brian Dabson. The brief explores place-based rural realities and inequalities and provides transformational ideas and pivotal moves that government at every level can take to help rural communities become more dynamic, healthy places where everyone belongs, live with dignity, and thrive.
U.S. Census Bureau Updates Its Interactive COVID-19 Data Hub

The U.S. Census Bureau has released an updated version of the interactive data hub on its COVID-19 resource page. The resource page is designed to help federal agencies, businesses, and communities make decisions related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Version 2.0 of the interactive data hub includes new Census Bureau data, Community Resilience Estimates, and phase 3 results from the Small Business Pulse Survey. The update also adds links to 38 COVID-19 related datasets from other federal agencies, and nonprofit and private sector sources. These datasets provide resources related to business and economics, individuals and households, and government services. 
In an effort to keep COVID-19 safety precautions top of mind in Wilson and support our local businesses as they continue to navigate COVID-19 issues, the City of Wilson, Wilson County, and Wilson Chamber of Commerce have launched the Wilson Has My Word campaign.
Based on other successful support campaigns across the country, local businesses will complete a Health and Safety Checklist with the specific COVID-19 measures being taken in the business. After completing the checklist, they will officially be a part of this collaborative campaign committed to telling the community that Wilson has their word! 

Customers may look for the "Wilson Has My Word" logo around Wilson or go to www.thewilsonword.com to find participating businesses. Participation for businesses will be completely voluntary. We hope you will participate and encourage others to join the effort to keep our community safe!


The newest section in the Rural Response to Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) issue guide provides resources to help communities and healthcare providers ensure access to COVID-19 vaccination in rural areas. 
When Differences of Opinion Escalate: Conflict Resolution Skills for Local Elected Officials

March 24, 2021
10:00am – 2:00pm
 
Conflict at its lowest level is a difference of opinion. However, these differences can escalate and result in strained relationships that impede problem solving, successful goal attainment, and effective governance. We do not have to be resigned to these uncomfortable moments and resort to avoidance or aggression. There is a middle path to responding to conflicts in a civil fashion that supports hearing all sides of an issue regardless of the final outcome.  
If you want to influence others to listen to your perspective, if you want to reduce being misunderstood and misunderstanding others, if you want to manage the inevitable tensions that arise for elected officials with one another, citizens and staff, and if you want to maximize your effectiveness as an elected official to carry out your vision for running for office in the first place, there are tools to add to your toolbox.
In this workshop, you will strengthen your ability to effectively manage conflict in a variety of settings by: 

  • Identifying when differences of opinion are about to escalate
  • Adding tools that help in deescalating conflicts
  • Practicing five methods for conflict resolution 

This highly interactive video workshop will help you develop the leadership skills that allow you to express principled differences in a civil way. 

Dr. Heather Lee of Developmental Associates offers an interactive online workshop using presentation, video, small group discussions, and scenario practices to help improve your ability to identify and manage conflict.
 
Register here. If you have questions, email Lisa Sheffield
The budget package passed by Congress in December rectified an oversight from the earlier CARES Act: Making U.S. citizens and legal immigrants in mixed-status families eligible for COVID-19-relief payments. 

In a new commentary, Migration Policy Institute (MPI) researchers estimate that nearly 3 million U.S.-citizen and legal-immigrant adults and children with an unauthorized immigrant spouse or parent are eligible for stimulus of up to $600 under the December legislation, as well as retroactive CARES Act payments of up to $1,200 per person. 

With the incoming Biden administration and Congress likely poised to consider increasing the $600 checks, perhaps to as much as $2,000, the MPI data showing affected populations at U.S. and state levels could be a useful resource. The researchers note some populations remain uncovered, including 2.2 million U.S.-citizen and legal-immigrant children whose parents are both unauthorized immigrants. 

“Recent extensions of aid to U.S. citizens and legal immigrants in mixed-status families enjoyed bipartisan support,” write authors Julia Gelatt, Randy Capps, and Michael Fix. “ Further expansions of assistance would account for a small fraction of the total cost of any future stimulus package and would accrue major benefits to millions of U.S.-citizen children and—through family spending on essential needs—the communities in which they live.”

Funding/Grants
2021 SOLAR+ SCHOOLS
THE 2021 SOLAR+ SCHOOLS APPLICATION IS OPEN NOW!

APPLY BEFORE 5PM ON SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 28, 2021.

NC GreenPower plans to award 15 North Carolina schools each with a grant for the installation of an educational solar photovoltaic (PV) array. Each school will also receive approximately $14,000 in related benefits that include donated SunPower solar modules, a STEM curriculum and teacher training.

Questions should be emailed to solarschools@ncgreenpower.org. Submitted questions and answers regarding our Solar+ Schools program can be found here in our FAQ section. Need help convincing your school? Download this “Why your school should apply” document for some great reasons.

The 2021 application information and preview question documents are available at the links below. NC GreenPower estimates that there will be funding for 10 to 15 school grants for this year’s program. The total number of awards will be dependent on donations made to the program. NC GreenPower’s grant will pay for a portion of the project’s construction cost, up to a maximum of $14,000. School fundraising goals will be fixed, based on a scaled model, and will range from $6,000 – $12,000. To estimate your school’s fundraising goal, download this Excel file. Applications for the 2021 year will be accepted starting Saturday, January 2, 2021 and until 5pm on Sunday, February 28, 2021.
The U.S. Small Business Administration, in consultation with the Treasury Department, announced on January 8, that the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) will re-open the week of January 11 for new borrowers and certain existing PPP borrowers. To promote access to capital, initially only community financial institutions will be able to make First Draw PPP Loans on Monday, January 11, and Second Draw PPP Loans on Wednesday, January 13. The PPP will open to all participating lenders shortly thereafter. Updated PPP guidance outlining Program changes to enhance its effectiveness and accessibility was released on January 6 in accordance with the Economic Aid to Hard-Hit Small Businesses, Non-Profits, and Venues Act.

This round of the PPP continues to prioritize millions of Americans employed by small businesses by authorizing up to $284 billion toward job retention and certain other expenses through March 31, 2021, and by allowing certain existing PPP borrowers to apply for a Second Draw PPP Loan.

Please visit the website for more information: www.sba.gov

Grants to intermediary organizations to provide technical assistance and training for rural organizations and agencies to identify and plan for community facility needs that exist in their area, and once those needs have been identified, locating public and private resources to finance those identified needs. Priority will be given to applications that address USDA's goal to reduce the morbidity and mortality associated with Substance Use Disorder (including opioid misuse) in high-risk rural communities.

Geographic coverage: Nationwide
Application Deadline: Mar 22, 2021

Sponsors: U.S. Department of Agriculture, USDA Rural Development 

Funding to help nonprofit housing and community development intermediary organizations support housing, community facilities, and community and economic development projects in rural areas. Priority will be given to applications that address USDA's goal to reduce the morbidity and mortality associated with Substance Use Disorder (including opioid misuse) in high-risk rural communities.

Geographic coverage: Nationwide
Application Deadline: Mar 22, 2021

Sponsors: U.S. Department of Agriculture, USDA Rural Development 
Economic Development Grant Opportunity

The Creative Give Back is an award of up to $25,000 of consulting services for a unique economic development project. Creative Economic Development Consulting has given away one consulting project a year since 2014. The winner is selected through a competitive proposal process.
FY 2020 Section 202 Supportive Housing for the Elderly Program
Department of Housing and Urban Development

HUD is providing Capital Advance funding and project rental subsidies for the development and ongoing operation of supportive rental housing for very low-income persons, aged 62 years or older. This funding, leveraged with other financing sources, will expand affordable housing opportunities that are physically designed and that have a robust set of services that will allow seniors to live independently and age in community.
FY 2020 Fire Prevention and Safety Grant
Department of Homeland Security
Department of Homeland Security - FEMA

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA) Grants Programs Directorate is responsible for the implementation and administrations of the Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) Programs. The purpose of the AFG Program is to enhance the safety of the public and firefighters with respect to fire and fire-related hazards. The Grants Programs Directorate administers the Fire Prevention and Safety (FP&S) grants as part of the AFG Program. FP&S offers grants to support activities in two categories: (1) activities designed to reach high-risk target groups and mitigate incidences of death and injuries caused by fire and fire-related hazards ("Fire Prevention and Safety Activity") and (2) research and development activities aimed at improving firefighter safety ("Firefighter Safety Research and Development Activity"). The program guidance document provides potential applicants with the details of the requirements, processing, and evaluation of an application for financial assistance for both of these activity areas. 
Planning and Development
NC Small Business Survey Results

In October NC Main Street & Rural Planning (MS&RP) Center, in partnership with the Small Business and Technology Development Center (SBTDC), created a NC Small Business Survey. I asked you to share the survey with businesses in your community to identify their greatest needs and concerns. The survey drew responses from 1,219 small businesses from all 100 North Carolina counties, including 275 towns. Thank you for encouraging small businesses to participate! The survey responses have been compiled into a report which can be found here on the NC Commerce website.

The MS&RP Center and the SBTDC will collaborate to offer statewide training webinars, deliver one-on-one support, and provide technical assistance that addresses identified small business needs in these areas: planning for business continuity, developing a marketing plan, augmenting financial planning and assistance, pivoting a business, creating social media, and developing websites and e-commerce platforms. Through the survey, 353 small businesses also requested one-on-one business counseling services which the SBTDC provides at no charge. The partnership between the MS&RP Center and the SBTDC is intended to spur recovery and build more resilient local economies that can withstand crises and disasters including the COVID-19 pandemic.
Downtown Redevelopment Guide

The NC Main Street program is economic development within the context of historic preservation. With that being said, many of our Main Street communities have communicated a need for additional technical assistance on understanding the process and the role of the Main Street organization in the redevelopment of downtown properties. The NC Main Street & Rural Planning Center received a grant from the National Trust for Historic Preservation, to write a redevelopment guide, to specifically provide you with a step-by-step process and a checklist for leveraging redevelopment projects in downtown districts. Even if you are not a Main Street Community, this guide will be helpful. I encourage you to download the guide and use it as you work with projects over the coming years. In addition, the consultant that wrote the guide, Diane Young, will be conducted a break-out session at the NC Main Street Conference, on the redevelopment process and how to use the guide. The Redevelopment Guide can be found online.
COVID-19 Resources

Don’t forget, the NC Main Street & Rural Planning Center has a robust COVID resource site that is updated anytime new information is available. Check it out here.
44th Annual Conference & Exhibition

We would like you to SAVE THE DATE for our 
2021 Conference & Exhibition. 

Meet.
Make plans to attend the 2021 NCRWA 44th Annual Conference & Exhibition, May 10 - 13, 2021 in Winston-Salem at the newly renovated Benton Convention Center. The Convention Center is one of the largest meeting facilities in North Carolina featuring a first floor, street level exhibit hall. The windows and skylights provide an open and inviting atmosphere creating the perfect ambiance for meeting, learning and growing. This event offers prime networking and educational opportunities for water and wastewater professionals and provides vendors the perfect venue to showcase their products and services. NCRWA has the entire Benton Convention Center to showcase the many features of our event and the entire first floor is dedicated to our awesome vendors. 
 
Learn.
The largest event of its kind in NC, the conference features: exhibits, networking, continuing education sessions, credit hours, awards banquet, NC Water Taste Test Competition, golf tournament, sporting clay shoot, cornhole tournament, prizes and more! Be part of it! 
 
Grow.
Concurrent with Conference we are holding specially priced A-Distribution, B-Distribution, C-Distribution (incl. Trenching & Shoring), Collections I, Collections II, Collections III and Collections IV Certification Schools. 
 
 More information and registration details are coming soon to www.ncrwa.org
Revised Lead and Copper Rule Released

On December 22, 2020, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) finalized the first major update to the Lead and Copper Rule (LCR) in nearly 30 years. Per their press release, EPA's new rule uses science-based testing protocols to find more sources of lead in drinking water. The new rule also triggers actions to address lead earlier in more communities and reduces lead by more effectively managing corrosion control treatment, closing loopholes, and replacing more lead service lines in their entirety. 
 
This new rule will impact nearly all water systems across North Carolina and the nation. As implementation moves to the state level in the coming months, NCRWA will be prepared to assist systems with these new standards. More information is available at: https://www.epa.gov/ground-water-and-drinking-water/supporting-materials-final-revisions-lead-and-copper-rule.
WorkForce Development
NC Unemployment rates

Unemployment rates (not seasonally adjusted) increased in 76 of North Carolina’s counties in November, decreased in six, and remained unchanged in 18. Scotland County had the highest unemployment rate at 10.5 percent while Watauga County had the lowest at 4.2 percent. Ten of the state’s metro areas experienced rate increases, one decreased, and four remained unchanged. Among the metro areas, Fayetteville had the highest rate at 8.4 percent while Durham-Chapel Hill had the lowest at 5.2 percent. The November not seasonally adjusted statewide rate was 6.1 percent.

When compared to the same month last year, not seasonally adjusted unemployment rates increased in 99 counties and decreased in one. All 15 of the state’s metro areas experienced rate increases over the year.

The number of workers employed statewide (not seasonally adjusted) increased in November by 8,578 to 4,665,264, while those unemployed increased by 4,704 to 301,765. Since November 2019, the number of workers employed statewide decreased 257,673, while those unemployed increased 123,934.

It is important to note that employment estimates are subject to large seasonal patterns; therefore, it is advisable to focus on over-the-year changes in the not seasonally adjusted estimates.
The Center for Energy Education is partnered with the Family Resource Center-South Atlantic and the Turning Point Workforce Development Board to train a new round of Halifax County residents in solar construction

The Golden LEAF Foundation awarded funds to the FRC-SA for the New Start Glow Re-Entry program.

The goal of the program is to provide long-term employment in high demand fields, with an emphasis on the solar energy field for justice-involved residents of Halifax County.
“Our tagline is, serving families, changing communities,” said James Johnson, director of the New Start Re-Entry program at the FRC-SA.

According to Johnson, the New Start Re-Entry program is just one of the many FRC-SA programs. “We are doing our part by helping those in need of second chances obtain sustainable employment.”  Since 2017, the Center has trained 189 residents in its Solar Construction and Occupational Safety and Health Administration Training course.

Construction classes began at the Center on December 5.

Through the partnership, the FRC-SC recruits students for the C4EE to train. After their solar training is completed, students attend a work-readiness course from the Turning Point Workforce Development Board. “Work-readiness training gives students knowledge about the job and how to keep the job,” said Frince Williams, business engagement coordinator of the Turning Point Workforce Development Board.

The Center connects its certified trainees with solar companies who have construction projects underway.
CSX Completing Work On The Carolina Connector

Shipping Opportunities Will Open Up For All Freight Movers!

Rocky Mount's strategic location on the CSX network, its growing industrial sector, and proximity to the Raleigh market along with CSX's existing rail operations and community ties make it an ideal location for the Carolina Connector (CCX).
 
The positive impact of the CCX will ripple throughout the state. The project will result in $310 million in public benefits, $125 million to the state economy,
3 million annual reduction in truck miles on NC roads (equaling 120,000 trucks off the road per year), and 655,000 ton reduction in CO2 emissions
in NC (equaling 138,000 cars off the road).

CCX will provide critical infrastructure and improve transportation options for NC business to create competitive advantages that will support economic growth.
 
CCX will lower shipping costs by as much as 15% and increase access to national and global markets. It will provide greater market access for North Carolina ports at a lower cost, making the Port of Wilmington more attractive for shippers globally.
Temperature-controlled transportation company, Frozen Food Express (FFE) Transportation Services, Inc. is hiring for its new service center in Rocky Mount, NC. 
AGING
North Carolina Lifespan Respite Program

The North Carolina Lifespan Respite Program is an application-based program that reimburses eligible family caregivers caring for individuals of any age for up to $500 in respite care services in a calendar year. Funding is limited, and applications are accepted only when funds are available.

Eligibility

  • Caregiver must be at least 18 years old and a North Carolina resident.
  • Caregiver must be providing unpaid care for an individual of any age.
  • Neither caregiver nor care recipient can be receiving ongoing, publicly funded in-home services or other respite care, including adult day care services. Those who are on waiting lists for these services are eligible for Lifespan Respite Vouchers. (See list of examples of publicly-funded respite services (PDF).)
  • Priority is given to:
  • Caregivers with the greatest economic need.
  • Caregivers who provide direct care for their loved one.
  • Caregivers who have not received a publicly-funded respite break within 6 months of submission of application. (Applications not meeting this criteria will be considered if there are emergency or extenuating circumstances.)
  • Applicants must be able to use voucher funds within 90 days.

Application process

  • Family caregiver is referred to the program by a professional organization (referring agency).
  • Referring agency completes online application form on behalf of the family caregiver.
  • Family caregiver completes Caregiver Certification form.
  • Application is processed by the High Country Area Agency on Aging (HCAAA).
  • HCAAA provides additional instruction and required paperwork.
  • Family caregiver must be able to:
  • Pay for services in advance if bill arrives prior to reimbursement. Reimbursement check will be mailed within five (5) business days of receipt of completed paperwork from caregiver.
  • Screen and hire respite provider.
  • Complete required paperwork (Private Provider Agreement, Record of Respite Service).
  • Submit required paperwork within 14 days from expiration date noted on award letter.

Helpful forms


For additional information on the North Carolina Lifespan Respite Program, contact Pat Guarnieri at 828-265-5434 ext. 139 or pguarnieri@hccog.org
Connecting with Other People is Essential to our Health and Well-Being.

The good news is there are many ways we can connect even if we’re physically apart.

Keeping our physical distance from others is key to helping prevent the spread of COVID-19, but it also is important to find ways to connect to others and stay engaged in the world around us. That's because social isolation and loneliness also can have a devastating impact on our health and well-being. In fact, a recent study found that social isolation can be as bad for your health as smoking 15 cigarettes a day! 

That's why, as we work together as a nation to get through the COVID-19 pandemic, we also need everyone to join together and Commit to Connect... 

...to help ourselves:  Staying active and engaged is critical to our own health. Commit to Connect, and create a plan that includes activities and routines that allow you to stay in contact with others.

...with loved ones: People of all ages and abilities are struggling as a result of physical distancing, but many older adults, people with disabilities and others who are at increased risk from COVID-19 are particularly feeling the weight of social isolation. Commit to Connect more actively, and more regularly, with your family, friends and neighbors. Make sure they are ok, and help them connect to services and resources they may need.   

...through technology: Technology has opened many virtual doors, making it possible for people to share experiences, even while physically apart. We have to work together, and Commit to Connect more people to these resources.

...through our networks:  Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the aging and disability networks have been partnering with businesses, every level of government, other non-profits, and the people in our communities. Together, we have been finding, sharing and replicating innovative solutions to the ongoing challenges created by the pandemic, including social isolation and loneliness. We need to Commit to Connect as partners and innovators, even after the pandemic is behind us, to continue to help the people we serve stay connected and engaged, fully participating in their communities.  
Workshops/Webinars
Upcoming Webinar to Highlight Data and Broadband Planning

Join BroadbandUSA on February 17 at 2 p.m. ET for the webinarData as the Foundation for Broadband Planning.” The federal government compiles huge broadband datasets cataloguing broadband availability and subscriptions through the U.S. Census Bureau and Federal Communications Commission, among others. These can be augmented with commercially available speed test data to provide better insight into broadband access and availability. Through this webinar, gain a fuller understanding of these datasets and how to use data to strengthen your broadband planning efforts.

Click here to learn more and register.  
HURRY - Discounted Registration Rates End February 26th!
 
Join us online on April 23, 2021 as we explore "Innovative Alternatives for Stormwater Funding." The demands of today's stormwater management programs require a vast amount of resources. While these programs are typically funded by stormwater fees or other citizen funds, stormwater managers are often seeking creative approaches to meet growing demands. This Seminar will give you real-world experience and information on how to make the most of the resources you have while exploring ways to increase the bottom line. 

SESWA's 16th Annual Regional Stormwater Seminar
"Innovative Alternatives for Stormwater Funding"
-
Friday, April 23, 2021
9:00 AM - 4:00 PM Eastern
-
Online Event

Earn up to 5 Continuing Education Hours. Visit the SESWA Seminar webpage for complete details. We hope you are able to participate!

ReCONNECT for the Future: A Virtual Emerging Issues Forum 

Institute for Emerging Issues

Over four days, February 15-18, 2021, we’ll have a series of meetings called ReCONNECT for the Future, built from the key discoveries we made during the program:

·    People in our state are looking for ways to connect with one another across lines of difference. We’ve discovered some ideas with the potential to move to action across the state.

·    The easiest pathways to move forward are often local—steps we can take in our own backyards. We’ve identified some areas that will give community groups a greater capacity to make local change happen.

Connect, Engage, Transform: Rural Community Partnerships Webinar Series

UNC Rural Carolina Center for Public Service

As UNC-Chapel Hill and communities throughout rural North Carolina have adapted to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic — during a year that also highlighted ongoing racial injustice and a controversial election — we seek to highlight ways that University-community partnerships have moved through this time together.  

Through these webinars we aim to: 

·    Connect: Highlight collaborative partnerships between Carolina and rural communities 
·    Engage: Provide compelling and dynamic opportunities for interaction
·    Transform: Encourage learning from each other to promote the well-being of all 

There will be four webinars, each addressing a specific topic within the broad theme of “partnership in a pandemic.”

2021 NC Main Street - Virtual Conference

This year’s conference is going virtual March 9-11. “Main Street: Pivoting for Prosperity” recognizes that through the hardships that communities, businesses, property owners, and individuals have to endure as a result of a pandemic, a natural disaster, a market shift, or another crisis, the Main Street program helps build more resilient downtowns that are better equipped to face the next challenge.

The conference is open to everyone, not just NC Main Street communities and registration is $90. You can view the topics, schedule, and speakers, as well as register here.

February 2-April 27, 2021|Attend via Zoom
 
This program, led by faculty member Tyler Mulligan, teaches the concepts, methods, and strategies of community economic development. Held over 13 consecutive Tuesdays (9:00 a.m.-noon) and running from February through April 2021, this academy is designed for community development practitioners and covers the concepts, methods, and strategies of community economic development. The course provides community development practitioners with practical skills and perspectives surrounding community development in North Carolina.
Topics will include:

  • Community development finance
  • Affordable housing strategies and tools
  • Role of economic development
  • CDBG and related grant programs
  • Environmental finance
  • Visioning and citizen participation
  • Tools for group decision-making
  • Purchasing and contracting
  • Measuring success
  • Grants management

Attendees are eligible for a total of 37 AICP credit hours upon completion of the academy.
Town & State Social

The N.C. League of Municipalities is proud to host the annual Town & State Social: A Virtual Town Hall Connecting Legislators and Local Leaders on Wednesday, March 3 at 5 p.m., this time presented in a virtual format.

Join us for this special evening to celebrate our cities and towns, and to discuss the most critical topics facing our local governments. This is a valuable opportunity for our local leaders and state legislators to meet, interact, and hear from one another regarding the pressing issues facing our cities and towns.

The event will include policy updates from numerous legislative leaders, town hall sessions between state and local officials, and networking opportunities that aim to strengthen relationships as we move into the 2021-22 legislative biennium. We will also be exploring NCLM’s Municipal Advocacy Goals, as adopted by you, our local leaders, and look at how they intersect with the challenges facing your city or town.

This won’t be just another Zoom meeting. Be ready for an engaging evening, full of entertaining and valuable segments that, by evening’s end, will help us in “Working As One, Advancing All.” 

Leverage NC Webinar Series: Better Community Planning and Economic Development
Feb. 24

Join Leverage NC in a four-part series titled Better Community Planning & Economic Development for NC cities and towns. This series is led by Ed McMahon, a leading authority on topics such as the links between health and the built environment, sustainable development, land conservation, smart growth, and historic preservation. 

This series will explore small town economic development and quality of life, post-pandemic real estate and land use practices, asset-based economic development, and what to know about reviving suburbs and commercial corridors. 

This workshop will examine the “secrets of successful communities.” It will explore how some communities are able to maintain their economic vitality and quality of life in a rapidly changing world, while other communities continue to lose jobs, population and their once unique character and identity. This series will give you the tools and techniques that successful communities use to thrive!
TAKING THE CONVERSATION VIRTUAL: A Primer on Moderating Online Discussions
Hand Sanitizer 2
121 W. Nash St. Wilson, NC 27893
252-234-5952