Friday, March 15, 2013

FW: Publications, Tools, Learning and Funding

Resources from our friends at USDA-Rural Development


From: Agans, Suzette - RD, Washington, DC []
Sent: Friday, March 15, 2013 7:58 AM
Subject: Publications, Tools, Learning and Funding


INPUT SOUGHT by April 26  changes to 2 SBA programs:


The Small Business Administration has determined that changing conditions in the American economy and persistent high levels of unemployment compel the agency to seek ways to improve access to its two flagship business lending programs: the 504 Loan Program and the 7(a) Loan Program.


The purpose of SBA's proposed rulemaking announced today is to reinvigorate these programs as vital tools for creating and preserving American jobs. SBA proposes to strip away regulatory restrictions that detract from the 504 Loan Program's core job creation mission as well as the 7(a) Loan Program's positive job creation impact on the American economy. The 504 Loan Program and 7(a) Loan Program are SBA's two primary business loan programs authorized under the Small Business Investment Act of 1958 and the Small Business Act, respectively.


This proposed rule will enhance job creation through increasing eligibility for loans under SBA's business loan programs, including its Microloan Program, and by modifying certain program participant requirements applicable to the 504 Loan Program. In addition, SBA proposes to revise Certified Development Company (CDC)operational requirements to clarify certain existing regulations.


SBA must receive comments to this proposed rule on or before April 26, 2013.  The February 25, 2012 FEDERAL REGISTER contains the proposed rulemaking and instructions for submission of comments.





Limited Access: Rural Communities Struggle to Find Internet Providers - Feb 27, 2013 -- Associated Press article via The Washington Post, (DC), tells why finding reliable and affordable Internet can be a headache in rural areas.


How Much Can a Rural Doctor Do? Ask Neil Nelson, MD  - Feb 25, 2013 -- American Medical News article interviews Neil Nelson, MD, from Gibson City, Ill. about what it takes to be Country Doctor of the Year.


Imports account for large shares of U.S. consumption of some fruits - While the United States is one of the largest world producers of fruits and nuts, imports accounted for about 38 percent of the volume of U.S. consumption of fresh, processed, and frozen fruits and tree nuts in 2011. Imports account for important shares of U.S. consumption when products—primarily tropical products—cannot be produced in sufficient quantities domestically, or when imports can complement the seasonality of U.S. production. Bananas, pineapples, mangoes, and limes are examples of major tropical product imports, while grapes, plums, and blueberries are examples of important seasonal imports. Still other imports, such as clementines and raspberries, compete directly with U.S. products. Over the past decade, U.S. edible fruit and nut imports rose dramatically in value due to the growing demand for offseason fruit, an expanding ethnic population, and the interest of consumers in sampling new temperate and tropical fruits. Mexico and Chile dominate U.S. fruit imports, with a combined share of about 40 percent of the U.S. import value in 2011. A chart is updated from one that appears in Fruit and Tree Nut Outlook, December 2012.


Rural Development and Cooperative Programs released a new report – The Role of Food Hubs in Local Food Marketing (Service Report 73).  Here is a link to the press release issued by the Deputy Secretary’s office:  To view the full report, go to:


To learn even more about food hubs or other AMS local food marketing work, visit their Web site at:


Study shows consumers willing to pay more for local food -


Project for Public Spaces study indicates information and outreach bigger barrier than price at farmers markets

Foreign-born populations are a growing presence in many rural areas - The foreign-born population of the United States has increased rapidly since 1970, primarily due to immigration from Latin America and Asia. By 2010, about 40 million people of foreign birth lived in the United States, accounting for 13 percent of the population. New immigrants have historically settled in urban areas, and that continues to be true today. Nonetheless, during 2007-11, an average of 2.1 million foreign-born people lived either in nonmetro counties or in metro counties with economies that are heavily dependent on agriculture. Although the foreign-born population in such counties accounted for a smaller percentage of the total population (4.1 percent) than in the Nation as a whole, some of these counties have large foreign-born populations. Not surprisingly, many counties along the U.S.-Mexico border and in southern Florida have above-average concentrations of foreign born, but so do places like Clark County, Idaho (31 percent); Seward County, Kansas (31 percent); Echols County, Georgia (26 percent); and Franklin County, Washington (26 percent). A map is found in Immigration and the Rural Workforce, on the ERS website, updated February 2013.


Hospitals Building Healthier Communities. Authored by research associate David Zuckerman, the report examines how hospitals strengthen local communities through engagement and economic development, as they embrace an anchor mission.


Food manufacturing accounts for 14 percent of all U.S. manufacturing employees  - In 2011, the U.S. food and beverage manufacturing sector employed about 1.5 million people, or about 14 percent of all U.S. manufacturing employees, and just over 1 percent of all U.S. nonfarm employment. In almost 30,000 food manufacturing plants (as of 2007) located throughout the country, these 1.5 million workers were engaged in transforming raw agricultural materials into products for intermediate or final consumption. Some products become ingredients for other food products, such as syrup used to make soft drinks. Meat and poultry plants employed the largest percentage of food and beverage manufacturing workers (32 percent), followed by bakeries (17 percent), and fruit and vegetable processing plants (11 percent). This chart appears in the Processing & Marketing topic page on the ERS website, updated February 2013.






Benefits of EHRs for Critical Access Hospitals and Other Small Rural Hospitals
Offers resources on the adoption and implementation of electronic health records for small and critical access hospitals. Also has resources on hospital leadership, funding for health IT, health IT workforce and broadband connectivity. Organization: Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC)


Regional Food Hub Resource Guide -





NCBA Webinars:  Register for any of these here:



·         Board Member Engagement: Assessments and Succession Planning, Wednesday, April 10, 2013 • 2 - 3 pm, Eastern
Learn two critical issues needed for board success in cooperatives: tools for assessment and succession planning.



·         How to Engage Media about the Cooperative Advantage, Tuesday, April 30, 2013 • 2 - 3 pm, Eastern
Cooperatives have a good story to tell, and there are ways to engage the media to share the business model’s advantage with the public.


WEBINAR:  Regional Food Systems -- If you are working in regional food systems, think about registering for the March WCRL webinar - Thursday, March 28, 1-2 pm ET. Carol Kline will share her research on the sustainable farm to food value chain in North Carolina. Participate and contribute to the discussion! Click here to register. Please share the link with your networks!


WEBINAR: Local Government Finance in a Turbulent Economy 2013, Tuesday, March 26, 2013, 10:00 AM - 11:00 AM (Eastern Time)

Local Government budgets will be affected by several economic forces that are beyond the control of local officials. The rate of the national and state economic recovery, the condition of the housing market, and international economic events will all affect both the revenues and the expenses of local governments. More importantly, the duration of the financial stress now facing local governments will be determined, in part, by the duration of these events.

Fiscal Sustainability Webinar: Local Government Finance in a Turbulent Economy - Economic Outlook for 2013 Dr. David Schweikhardt
Registration is required for the webinar; to register go to

Contact Information: If you have any questions regarding the webinar series contact Mary Schulz





Food Assistance and Nutrition Challenges of Rural Residents and Communities (Application due April 15)

As in past years, the SRDC RIDGE Center is seeking to invest in innovative social sciences-based research that explores the dimensions of the food and nutrition assistance challenges impacting residents (or communities) in rural America, including key populations such as Native Americans, immigrants, other racial/ethnic minorities, single parents, youth, the persistently poor, and others. For more information on this year's research priorities and details of the application process, please check out the document  Download RFP


NURSE Corps Scholarship Program - Application deadline: May 2, 2013.  Provides scholarships to nursing students in exchange for a two-year, full-time service commitment (or part-time equivalent), at an eligible health care facility with a critical shortage of nurses.


Innovative Approaches to Improve Community Health - Application deadline: Applications accepted on an ongoing basis. Supports promising new practices that serve vulnerable populations by advancing prevention, improving access, and integrating primary community and clinical care.


Rural Transit Assistance Programs (RTAP) - Application deadline: Applications accepted on an ongoing basis. Funding for training, technical assistance, and other support services for rural transit operators.


USDA Community Facilities Loan and Grant Program - Application deadline: Applications accepted on an ongoing basis.
Funding to construct, enlarge, or improve essential community facilities for health care, public safety, and public services in rural areas.


Leadership & Sustainability Institute Seeks Nominations for 2013-2014 Black Male Achievement Social Innovation Accelerator - Programs and organizations selected as BMA Social Innovators will receive $150,000 over a period of twelve months in support of their efforts to become national leaders in the field of black male achievement.... Deadline: April 5, 2013


Dog Fence DIY Invites Applications for Veterinary and Pre-Veterinary Academic Scholarships
Scholarships will provide $2,000, distributed in increments of $500 per semester, to qualified applicants enrolled in a doctor of veterinary medicine program, an undergraduate biology or pre-veterinary studies program, or the equivalent.... Deadline: June 1, 2013


Harpo Foundation Invites Letters of Inquiry from Visual Arts and Nonprofit Arts Organizations - Grants of up to $10,000 will be awarded to visual artists whose work promises to advance and cross the boundaries of visual media and artistic disciplines.... Deadline: April 5, 2013 (Letters of Inquiry)


Langeloth Foundation Invites Health Organizations to Register for Physical and Emotional Healing Grants - Grants will be awarded to healthcare nonprofits working to promote healing from illness, accident, physical, social, or emotional trauma, as well as for projects designed to reduce recidivism among former offenders.... Deadline: April 8, 2013 (Registration)


Looking@Democrazy Competition Seeks Provocative Media Pieces that Address American Democracy - The competition offers a total of $100,000 in prizes to individuals who have developed creative ways to engage Americans in the democratic process and refocus the discussion of democracy in America.... Deadline: April 30, 2013 (Extended)


Mutual of America Foundation Accepting Applications for 2013 Community Partnership Awards - Ten public-private partnerships will receive awards, including a top prize of $25,000, in recognition of an outstanding contribution to society.... Deadline: April 1, 2013


Positive Exposures Invites Applications from Nonprofit Organizations to Create Compelling Media Campaigns - Positive Exposures works with nonprofit organizations to create compelling media projects that help them expand their reach, educate the public, and increase their funding.... Deadline: April 30, 2013


FY 2013 Economic Development Assistance Programs Modification 2 -

Technical assistance is one of the allowable activities.



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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