United States Department of Agriculture - Rural Development

United States Department of Agriculture - Rural Development

USDA assists regions in creating self-sustaining, long-term economic development in rural areas through visioning and strategic planning. They provides communities seeking information on USDA Rural Development and other federal community and economic development programs. USDA promotes partnerships at the local and state levels to assist communities in advancing their strategic or economic development plans.They also promote coordinated planning among Rural Development programs to address specific projects in a community or regional strategic plan.

Grant Programs:

Community Facilities - To fund the development of essential community facilities for public use in rural areas and may include hospitals, fire protection, safety, as well as many other community-based initiatives

Rural Community Development Initiative  - provides technical assistance and training funds to qualified intermediary organizations to develop their capacity to undertake housing, community facilities, and community and economic development projects in rural areas.

Rural Business Opportunity Grants - The RBOG program promotes sustainable economic development in rural communities with exceptional needs through provision of training and technical assistance for business development, entrepreneurs, and economic development officials and to assist with economic development planning.

Contact Rachelle Howe for more information on USDA grant opportunities.

News Headlines

UERPC August Newsletter

Posted: Mon, August 18, 2014

Some of the headlines you can read about this month:

  • Updated LMI Figures
  • Employee Spotlight-Steven Benne
  • IowaWorks-Did You Know?
  • ALICE Training
  • Finance 101 Training
  • YCC Training Held in Washington D.C.
... [ Read More ]

Pavement Data Collection Vans

Posted: Wed, July 23, 2014
Last spring, the Iowa DOT expanded its pavement data collection activities to include all paved roads in the state.  Previously, data was collected only on Federal-aid routes.  The Iowa DOT is paying for this data collection as part of its efforts to promote asset management among all jurisdictions responsible for roads.  

As a result of the increased scope of data collection, we've received calls and questions from several communities about the data collection vans.  The purpose of this note is to alert you that you may observe these vans in your community.  The vans are white with an  ARAN (Automatic Road Analyzer) logo on the side.

If you would like more information about pavement data collection, the Iowa Pavement Management Program (IPMP) web site is a good resource.  The page below, which is advertising a free workshop on pavement data collection and uses, shows a picture of what the ARAN vans look like, as well as the areas of the state where pavement data collection is currently in-progress.
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UERPC July Newsletter

Posted: Tue, July 22, 2014
Some of the headlines you can read about:
  • FFI Partners Nurture Worksite Garden
  • Board Member Spotlight-Randy Uhl
  • Seeking AmeriCorps Service Members
  • IowaWorks Did you Know
  • Zero Fatalities: A Goal We Can All Live With
... [ Read More ]

Seeking AmeriCorps Service Members

Posted: Wed, June 25, 2014
The Northeast Iowa Food and Fitness Initiative (FFI) in partnership with Luther College are accepting applications for the anticipated 2014-2015 AmeriCorps positions.

The AmeriCorps service members will join a team of enthusiastic people working in over 16 schools throughout Northeast Iowa to promote healthier school environments. Members will serve one or two districts within Northeast Iowa as they integrate healthy living into school culture through modeling and education. Members will develop youth leadership programs and deepen community investment in local healthy food access and opportunities for physical activity. As part of their service members, will support school gardens, encourage Safe Routes to School and integrate Farm to School activities across their assigned district.

Luther College is the host organization for the AmeriCorp State of Iowa 4-H positions.  AmeriCorps members will live and serve within school districts across Northeast Iowa transforming school environments to be healthier for students and models for their communities. Membership is open to U.S. citizens or lawful permanent residents age 17 and older.

On the ground, members will assist with school gardens, conduct nutrition and health education, and coordinate and train others to be leaders in this work.  Members will deepen the understanding for students, teachers and staff about the benefits of growing and consuming healthy, green, affordable food and being physically active.

With coaching, members will become a resource for school wellness committees in one or two districts and provide active programming that infuses healthy living into school culture.

AmeriCorps members may live within one of the following communities in the six-county region: Elkader, West Union, Oelwein and/or New Hampton.  Additional work space will be provided at the Environmental Studies department at Luther College where members will be able to connect with other folks doing similar service.

Service members receive a modest living allowance, travel reimbursement and an education award which can be used for higher education tuition or loan repayment after completing a full term of service.  The term of service is September 1, 2014 - August 31, 2015.

Luther College is currently accepting applications on a rolling basis; positions will be open until filled.  Please submit an electronic letter of interest and a résumé highlighting experiences and rationale to Emily Neal, Director of School Outreach at Luther College at nealem01@luther.edu or find application info online at www.iowafoodandfitness.org.
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