Tuesday, March 5, 2013

FW: Publications, Tools, and Funding

From our colleagues at USDA-Rural Development. Several opportunities relate to manufacturing and/or rural populations specifically. Also, take note of the link to the proposed definition of "rural," which is to take effect on March 28, 2013.


From: Agans, Suzette - RD, Washington, DC [mailto:Suzette.Agans@wdc.usda.gov]
Sent: Thursday, February 28, 2013 2:35 PM
Subject: Publications, Tools, and Funding


REPORT ON THE DEFINITION OF RURAL – Recommendations to Congress, as per the Farm Bill, of (re) defining Rural.  Also includes the date March 28, 2013, when a new definition takes effect.






Manufacturing Bouncing Back

America's manufacturing sector is recovering and poised for a modest rebound. The question is how much?

The long decline in America's manufacturing sector finally is over. During the past two years, manufacturing output has regained almost three-quarters of the stunning 20% drop it took during the Great Recession. And manufacturing firms have pared their production costs and improved their efficiency. Now they are poised for a comeback. Read More

By: Art Pine/Kiplinger


The Geographic Concentration of Manufacturing Across the United States.

Manufacturing has been one of the major bright spots in the economic recovery of the last few years, contributing more than 25 percent of the overall growth in GDP between 2009 and 2011 and adding roughly 500,000 new jobs between the beginning of 2010 and the end of 2012. This trend is especially welcome as manufacturing jobs often provide higher wages and better benefits than non-manufacturing jobs. Read More..  By: Economics and Statistics Administration


Program to Entice People to Rural Kansas Working - Feb 4, 2013 -- NECN.com article tells of the Kansas Rural Opportunity Zone incentive, a program that pays back a portion of student loans and gives income tax breaks to those who move to a declining county.


Rural Poor are Concentrated - Jan 31, 2013 -- Daily Yonder discusses how poverty in rural America is more concentrated than in urban counties. Poor people are more likely to live in counties where a high percentage of people live in poverty.


EPA Releases New Report on Strategies to Advance Equitable Development

A new U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) report, written by the Office of Sustainable Communities and the Office of Environmental Justice, explains approaches for low-income, minority, tribal, and overburdened communities to shape development that responds to their needs and reflects their values. Creating Equitable, Healthy, and Sustainable Communities: Strategies for Advancing Smart Growth, Environmental Justice, and Equitable Development provides a menu of land use and community design strategies community-based organizations, local and regional decision-makers, developers, and others can use to revitalize their communities.  Case studies highlight seven communities that have used these strategies: Edmonston, MD; Chicago, IL; Spartanburg, SC; New Orleans, LA; Ohkay Owingeh, NM; Boston, MA; and Seattle, WA.  Click here to download the report.


New Minority Population Maps are Available
The Rural Assistance Center announces the addition of two new maps featuring data on 1) American Indian and Alaska Native Population and 2) Black or African American Population.


Vibrant Rural Communities Case Studies Series
Collection of case studies describing how rural communities and regions use strategies including downtown redevelopment, historic preservation, streetscape improvements, land conservation, and tourism to grow economies and create stronger communities. Currently, case studies feature New Mexico, Kentucky, Wisconsin, Georgia, Wyoming, Pennsylvania, and Iowa.
Organization: National Association of Development Organizations


Rural Natives' Perceptions of Strengths and Challenges in Their Communities
Explores how Native Americans view the current socioeconomic and environmental state of their communities and their future within them. Data from two sources were used to develop report: the Community and Environment in Rural America (CERA) surveys and focus groups with Native leaders in one rural state. Organization: Carsey Institute.  Date: 2013

Agriculture's role in climate change: greenhouse gas emissions and carbon sequestration - Agriculture (including on-farm energy emissions) accounted for about 8 percent of U.S. greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in 2010. Since farm production represents about 1 percent of total U.S. gross domestic product (in real gross value-added terms), the sector is relatively GHG-intensive. In all U.S. sectors except agriculture, the largest contributor to GHG emissions is fossil fuel combustion for energy. In agriculture, crop and livestock activities are unique sources of nitrous oxide and methane emissions, notably from soil nutrient management, enteric fermentation (a normal digestive process in animals that produces methane), and manure management. These emissions dominate the contribution of energy related emissions in the sector. The land-based activities of agriculture—as well as forestry—also have the unique capacity to withdraw ("sequester") carbon dioxide (CO2) from the atmosphere and store it in soil and biomass sinks through activities such as no-till on cropland or land use change from croplands to grasslands. EPA estimates that U.S. carbon land-sinks offset close to 15.8 percent of total U.S. emissions in 2010. Agriculture provided 4 percent of U.S. sinks in 2010.

Rural farm counties weather recession - Nonmetro counties classified by ERS as dependent on farming have historically lagged other nonmetro counties in growth. However, with agriculture generally thriving through the recession and recovery period, farm counties have had relatively healthy growth since 2009. Bureau of Economic Analysis statistics show that 18 percent of farm counties lost jobs in 2009-2011, but this was a far lower than the 45 percent proportion found among other nonmetro counties. Some of the gain in farm counties was due to growth in shale mining for oil and gas. A chart available and based on the County Typology Codes, found on the ERS website.





BusinessUSA.gov, a Presidential initiative designed to help small business and exporters Discover opportunities, Connect with the right resources and Grow was recently re-launched.

BusinessUSA is the first fully integrated federal website, reflecting a new level of collaboration among federal agencies and a stronger commitment to more streamlined and efficient customer service. Check out the new BusinessUSA! We've created a simpler and more intuitive website for users.The new BusinessUSA offer visitors a direct path to programs and tools such as financing, exporting, starting and growing a business, veteran's programs and disaster assistance.  http://business.usa.gov/


2012 Small Business Profiles for States and Territories
Supplies data on small businesses in each of the 50 states, the District of Columbia and limited data on the U.S. territories. Topics covered include: the number of firms, demographics of business ownership, small business income, banking, business turnover, industry composition, and employment gains and losses by size of business. Organization: Small Business Administration


SBA Local Assistance - Directory of local SBA district offices that provide counseling, mentoring, and training for small businesses. Organization: Small Business Administration


Conducting Homeless Counts on Native American Lands: A Toolkit
Highlights steps, tools, and methods that can be used to complete an accurate homeless count on American Indian, Alaska Native, and Hawaiian Home Land (AIANHH) lands. Toolkit is based upon past research as well as interviews with key stakeholders in the field. Organization: Housing Assistance Council. Date: 02 / 2013


5 more ways to overcome barriers to youth engagement - Engaging young people in community efforts can be easier said than done. Check out our list of five additional challenges, along with possible solutions you can implement right away.


Grow your own is a ground up, community-based approach to economic development. Instead of putting resources into economic development strategies that reach outside of the community, it focuses resources on existing community strengths, small businesses and developing job-creating entrepreneurs. Communities using a grow your own strategy develop policies and activities to spur innovation, entrepre­neurship and local business growth. Check out the Grow Your Own Guide from the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City.


Manufacturing Concentrations around the USA

This past month the U. S. Department of Commerce released the report "The Geographic Concentration of Manufacturing Across the United States."  It provides a fascinating look at one of the bright spots in the ongoing economic recovery.

In 2010, there were 629 counties where earnings paid to manufacturing employees exceeded 20% of the total earnings. States with over 30 counties were Indiana, Ohio, Tennessee, Wisconsin, Georgia, Iowa and Kentucky. Rural and micropolitan counties accounted for 425 of the 629 counties in the study.

Indiana, with 50 counties cited, has 22.3% of their total earnings coming from their 13.1% of employment base in manufacturing. Those employed in manufacturing earn 70% more than average in Indiana. There was a similar increase in wages for manufacturing in WI (up 56%); Iowa (66%); Ohio (60%); Michigan (69%); and Alabama (51%).

While manufacturing accounts for 11.9% of the U. S.'s GDP, from 2009 to 2011 it accounted for more than 25% of the overall growth in GDP during the same period of time. Over 500,000 manufacturing jobs were added since the lows of 2009.

This quote from the report summarized why we are so enthused about the impact of manufacturing in rural America: "Manufacturing is not isolated from the rest of the economy, and in places where a significant portion of economic activity is due to manufacturing, other types of business benefit. In other words, the presence of manufacturing in a community generates direct and indirect jobs and confers additional economic benefits that exceed the earnings and employment measures described above. As the economy continues to recover, the hope and expectation is that manufacturing will continue its rebound and contribute to the generation of more relatively high paying jobs."






Administration for Community Living Announces Funding Opportunity for Inclusive Transportation Planning

The U.S Administration for Community Living's Strengthening Inclusive Coordinated Transportation Partnerships to Promote Community Living program has issued a Request for Proposals for innovative inclusive transportation planning projects. These projects are a key component in the overall program's efforts to improve consumer involvement and ensure greater responsiveness to consumers' needs in the planning, design and operation of coordinated transportation systems. For more information, click here.


ARC Announces Grants for Make it in America Challenge

The Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) is making available up to $50,000 (up to $5,000 per project) in funding to help organizations serving the Appalachian Region develop applications for the Make it in America Challenge, a national federal competition focused on increasing the insourcing of American jobs that either have moved overseas but are now more competitively sourced in America; can be created through foreign direct investment; or are currently U.S.-based but are subject to international competition and can be strengthened with targeted technical assistance. The Make it in America Challenge will award more than $43 million in federal funds.  A federal funding opportunity (FFO) to be published in early 2013 at www.grants.gov will provide detailed guidelines for submitting an application to the challenge. To be eligible applicants must submit to ARC by email a letter of intent to participate in the challenge; letters of intent at currently being accepted. Applicants must submit the required information to ARC at insourcing@arc.gov no later than two weeks after the FFO issue date. ARC funding applicants will be notified of their eligibility for reimbursement within three weeks of the release of the FFO. Click here to view the original article.


Ben & Jerry's Foundation Seeks Proposals for Social and Environmental Justice Project - Grants will support nonprofit community-organizing groups in the United States working to further social and environmental justice and support sustainable and just-food systems.... Deadline: May 1, 2013


Land o'Lakes Foundation Accepting Applications for Projects that Benefit Rural Communities - Grants will be awarded to organizations working to address hunger, youth education, and arts and culture in rural communities.... Deadline: April 1, July 1, and October 1, 2013


Dominion Accepting Applications for K-12 Energy/Environment-Related Math and Science Programs - Grants of up to $10,000 will be awarded to schools, colleges, and nonprofits in the company's service area working to improve math and/or science education through study of the environment or energy.... Deadline: May 1, 2013


Lawrence Foundation Accepting Proposals for Environmental, Education, Human Services Projects - The foundation awards program and operating grants in a range of areas, including the environment, education, human services, and disaster relief.... Deadline: Rolling (April 30, November 1)


Sustainable Forestry Initiative Seeks Proposals for Conservation and Community Partnerships Program - The program awards grants of up to $5,000 to foster partnerships between organizations working to improve forest management in the United States and Canada and responsible procurement globally.... Deadline: March 18, 2013


Massage Therapy Foundation Invites Applications for 2013 Community Service Grants - The program awards grants of up to $5,000 to organizations that provide massage therapy to individuals who currently have little or no access to such services.... Deadline: April 1, 2013


Commonwealth Fund Accepting Letters of Inquiry for Patient-Centered Coordinated Care Program - The program aims to improve the quality of primary health care in the United States by supporting efforts to center care around the needs and preferences of patients and their families.... Deadline: Open (Letters of Inquiry)


Cornerstone OnDemand Foundation Seeks Applications for HR Management Software Grants - The company's Impact Grant program provides software and professional services worth up to $1 million to help nonprofits implement a learning management system.... Deadline: March 15, 2013


Department of Justice, Office on Violence Against Women Grants


Schools and Libraries Program Universal Service Fund - Application deadline: Mar 14, 2013
Provides discounts to help schools and libraries obtain affordable telecommunications and Internet access.


Inclusive Coordinated Transportation Partnership Project - Application deadline: Mar 20, 2013
Funding for organizations that are involved in the administration, delivery, or coordination of transportation, aging, and/or disability services to include seniors and individuals with disabilities in their planning processes.


Sustainable Construction in Indian Country Small Grant Program - Application deadline: Mar 25, 2013
Funding for programs that encourage the use of sustainable construction practices in Native American housing.


Typical or Troubled? School Mental Health Education Grants - Application deadline: Mar 30, 2013
Provides funding to schools to implement the Typical or Troubled? school mental health educational program.


Libri Books for Children Program - Application deadline: May 15, 2013.  Donates new, quality, hardcover children's books to small, rural public libraries in the United States.


Rural Broadband Access Loan and Loan Guarantee Program - Application deadline: Applications accepted on an ongoing basis.
This program furnishes loans and loan guarantees to provide funds for the costs of construction, improvement, or acquisition of facilities and equipment needed to provide service at the broadband lending speed in eligible rural areas.


The Glaser Progress Foundation grants - When future generations look back on us, what gauges will they use to decide whether we made genuine Progress? Based on the interests of its founder and managing board, the Glaser Progress Foundation accepts grant proposals in the areas of measuring progress, animal advocacy, and independent media.


Suzette M. Agans
Rural Development | Community and Economic Development
U.S. Department of Agriculture
1400 Independence Ave., S.W. Stop 3254 | Washington, D.C. 20250
Phone: 202.401.1922 | Fax 202.401.7311

"Committed to the future of rural communities"
"Estamos dedicados al futuro de las comunidades rurales"


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