About Us

About Us


The Upper Explorerland Regional Planning Commission is a regional organization serving 52 cities in Northeast Iowa. We provide support through regional cooperation and collaboration between local governments, nonprofits and community members. We are an essential portal for planning and economic development expertise. We provide resources to support housing, workforce development, business development, community planning, and transportation. We do this by connecting community members to resources.

Upper Explorerland Regional Planning Commission (UERPC) was formally established in November of 1972.  UERPC was created to promote regional cooperation and meet the planning and economic development needs of local governments in the five NE Iowa counties of Allamakee, Clayton, Fayette, Howard and Winneshiek.

  • Providing technical assistance, information resources, and administrative services for local infrastructure projects and community facility projects to make communities a better place to live
  • Assisting with grants, providing loans and local financing tools to develop and preserve quality, affordable housing
  • Serving as the Economic Development District for the Region to stimulate economic growth through comprehensive loan programs, assisting with business plans, and financial packaging structured to meet the size and needs of individual businesses
  • Providing an extensive on-going cooperative planning effort to improve transportation needs of the area and assisting with regional transit planning to promote transit programs that further the development of the state's public transportation systems
  • Providing training and support assistance to low-income individuals, dislocated workers, and youth through classroom, pre-employment and on-the-job training programs
  • Providing assistance to low-income families with decent, safe, and sanitary housing in the private rental market
  • Facilitating access to employment and services for Iowa job seekers with disabilities
  • Providing technical assistance on land use planning, zoning, sub-division regulations, and local government financing
  • Providing assistance in updating city ordinances and conducting requested needs assessments to determine local housing demand
  • Providing information on historic preservation, recreation planning, downtown revitalization, and urban renewal special taxation districts.

The work accomplished by this Agency is spoken of highly by city council members, community leaders, home and business owners, and others who have received their assistance and benefited greatly from it.

For more information or a tour of the facilities, feel free to contact us at (563)-382-6171 or at (563)-864-7551.

News Headlines

Housing Program Meeting Being Held

Posted: Wed, May 6, 2015

Housing Program Meeting Being Held
Tuesday, May 19th at 11:00 a.m.
Oelwein Chamber and Area Development
25 West Charles, Oelwein, IA

Upper Explorerland Regional Planning Commission (UERPC) is hosting a meeting regarding housing programs that are available in Northeast Iowa.  Guest speakers include Jeremy Babcock and Steve Benne with Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA), Jerry Floyd and Rita Eble from the Iowa Finance Authority (IFA) and Kathy Pfiffner from USDA.

Hot Topics include:

  • IEDA Workforce Housing Tax Incentive Program (WHTIP) is to provide financial incentives for the development of housing.
  • IEDA Owner Occupied Rehabilitation to assist with rehabilitation assistance for low-to moderate income homeowners in their community.
  • IFA First Time Homebuyer or Qualified Veteran program to assist with down payment and rehabilitation assistance.
  • USDA-Repair and Rehabilitation Program to assist applicants with 1% loans and those 62 and older with grants for homeowner rehabilitation.
  • USDA Direct and Guaranteed loan programs for help in purchasing homes.
  • USDA Multi-Family Housing to assist with rental assistance in rural development financed apartments.
  • UERPC Housing Trust Fund Programs-Funding available to assist homeowners and landlords with rehabilitation assistance.
  • UERPC-Housing Choice Voucher program provides rental assistance to those under 50% of HUD’s income guidelines.


This meeting will be held on Tuesday, May 19, 2015 at 11:00 A.M. at the Oelwein Chamber and Area Development office at 25 West Charles Street, in Oelwein.  If you are interested in attending this meeting or would like more information please contact Mary Huinker at 563-864-7551 ext. 111 or by emailing Lori Brockway at lbrockway@uerpc.org.

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FREE Informational Session on Financing Sources for Businesses

Posted: Fri, May 1, 2015

Clayton County Development Group in Elkader the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) in Cedar Rapids and Upper Explorerland Regional Planning Commission in Decorah are holding an informational session on various sources of financing for start-up & existing businesses.  SBA, a federal government agency devoted to assisting small & medium-sized businesses, will have a representative discussing business loan options, and Clayton County Development Group and Upper Explorerland Regional Planning Commission will have a representative discussing RLF funds available for businesses.  The 1-1/2 hour session, including questions & answers, will take place on Tuesday, May 12th starting @ 5:30 PM at Clayton County Office Building at 600 Gunder Rd. in Elkader, Iowa.  Register today to attend contact Darla Kelchen at 563-245-2201.

WHAT:       Free informational session on sources of money for businesses
WHO:        New/start-up and existing business owners/managers
WHEN:      Tuesday, May 12th, 2015 starting @ 5:30PM & wrapping up by 7PM
WHERE:    Clayton County Office Building 600 Gunder Rd. Elkader
COST:        Free

Join Clayton County Development, Upper Explorerland Regional Planning Commission and SBA to learn more about the options available for financing your business.  Also, discussed briefly will be government contracting opportunities and free counseling along with low cost training resources available for businesses.  Get your questions answered.  Register by contacting Darla at the CCDG office at 563-245-2201.

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Office Car For Sale

Posted: Mon, April 27, 2015

UERPC is seeking car bids for a 2007 Malibu, LS V6 package, 141,993 highway miles, grey, four-door, cloth interior, very clean. Minimum bid is $2,400.

Please submit sealed bids to Executive Director, Rachelle Howe, UERPC, 325 Washington Street, Decorah, IA  52101.  Bids will be opened at 12:00 Noon on May 7th. You do not need to be present at opening of bids.

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To All Local Area Contractors or Developers

Posted: Thu, April 23, 2015

To:             Local Area Contractors or Developers
From:        Sarah Snitker, Program Administrator
RE:           Information on 2 Upcoming Meetings

Upper Explorerland Regional Planning Commission (UERPC) will be holding an informational meeting for local contractors or developers interested in higher education of their craft.  This meeting will be instructed by Bill McAnally and discuss high performance building information and ways to make homes more energy efficient.  

Bill has more than 35 years of experience in the construction industry.  He was a building contractor for over 15 years specializing in new home and light commercial construction.  During this time he focused on energy-efficient and healthy building methods.  Bill was also a carpentry instructor for Iowa Central Community College for 17 years, eventually serving as Department Chair of Industrial Technology.  Bill now operates Bill McAnally Consulting.

This meeting will be held on Wednesday, May 13, 2015 at 8:30 A.M. at the Upper Explorerland Conference Room, 134 W. Greene Street, Postville, IA.  This meeting will be free of charge.  

For any contractors interested in bidding or working on projects within the City of Lansing through the Lansing Owner Occupied Rehabilitation Program, this meeting is highly encouraged as it will discuss ways in which work will have to be done for these projects.  

UERPC along with USDA, IFA and IEDA will be hosting a housing incentives meeting to discuss options for housing incentives available in our area. This meeting will discuss the Workforce Housing Tax Incentive Programs, all HOME assistance programs and also about loans and grants available through USDA. This meeting will be held at the Oelwein Economic Development Office at 25 W Charles Street in Oelwein on Tuesday, May 19th at 11 a.m.

If you are interested in attending these meetings or would like more information please contact Sarah at 563-864-7551 ext. 101 or by email at ssnitker@uerpc.org.  

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