Wednesday, May 7, 2014

FW: Publications, learning, funding, and Misc.

From our colleagues at USDA-RD.


From: Agans, Suzette - RD, Washington, DC []
Sent: Friday, May 02, 2014 2:19 PM
Subject: Publications, learning, funding, and Misc.



Rural counties lead growth in U.S. natural gas production - From 2000 to 2011, onshore gross withdrawals of natural gas in the lower 48 States increased by about 47 percent, reaching historic highs in every year after 2006. The most rural of counties—those that are outside the commuting area of a metropolitan area and lack a core urban area of at least 10,000 people, so called “nonmetro noncore”—accounted for nearly half of the growth in gas production. This growth is driven by nonmetro noncore gas-producing areas in the country’s midsection. Several metropolitan areas, notably the Fort Worth area in Texas, also contributed to the growth in natural gas production. Nonmetro micropolitan counties (nonmetro counties with small cities) as a whole accounted for only about 13 percent of the growth in natural gas production from 2000 to 2011. This chart and the underlying data (which include data on natural gas and oil production, as well as indicators of the degree of rurality) are found in the ERS data product, County-level Oil and Gas Production in the U.S., released in January 2014.





WEBINAR: Community Branding webinar on May 8th; 


WEBINAR: Creative Thinking about Rural Food Systems, by  Creative Art-Force, Inc. and the Center for Rural Affairs will be presenting during a webinar on May 8 at 1:00 PM ET on Creative Thinking about Developing Rural Food Systems. The free webinar will explore challenges and responses in building healthy, sustainable food systems in rural areas. Register here.


WEBINAR: The Future is Now: What’s Next in American Infrastructure, Friday, May 16, 2014, 9:30 - 11:30am
The Brookings Institution, Falk Auditorium, 1775 Massachusetts Ave NW, Washington, DC




Disruptive market, demographic and environmental dynamics are fundamentally reshaping America’s economic landscape. In this new reality, the United States must redouble its effort to rebuild and renew the critical infrastructure assets that will enable the growth of a more productive, inclusive, and resilient economy. This is no small task. As the federal government continues to scale back its role in the sector, a new generation of ideas and innovators are needed to fill the gap.

On May 16, the Metropolitan Policy Program at Brookings will host a series of presentations and discussion sessions highlighting young leaders who are fundamentally rethinking America’s critical infrastructure systems.  This event will be live webcast. Join the conversation on Twitter at #RebuildRenew and learn more about Infrastructure Week





Urban and Non-Urban Homeless Veterans' Reintegration Program (HVRP) — SGA-14-02

The U.S. Department of Labor's (DOL) Veterans' Employment and Training Service (VETS) announces the availability of approximately $6 million in grant funds to provide job training, counseling, and placement services (including job readiness, literacy, and skills training) to expedite the reintegration of homeless veterans into the labor force in urban or non-urban geographical areas. The HVRP grants intend to address two objectives: to provide services to assist in reintegrating homeless veterans into meaningful employment within the labor force and to stimulate the development of effective service delivery systems that will address the complex problems facing homeless veterans. Successful applicants will propose programs that expedite the reintegration of eligible homeless veterans into the labor force by providing job-driven training, placement services, counseling, supportive services, and other assistance. Competitive awards will range from a minimum of $100,000 to a maximum of $300,000 for each Urban grant and from a minimum of $100,000 to a maximum of $200,000 for each Non-Urban grant. Closing Date: May 13, 2014. Read the Full Announcement (PDF)


Doris Duke Charitable Foundation Accepting 'Electronic Postcards' for Building Bridges Program - DEADLINE: June 27, 2014 (Electronic Postcards)

Grants of up to $300,000 will be awarded to nonprofits in support of cultural programs or projects intended to increase public knowledge and understanding of Muslim societies through arts or media-based experiences....


Open Society Foundations Invites Applications for Social Justice Photography Projects  - DEADLINE: July 8, 2014

Grants of up to $30,000 will be awarded for photography projects that address a pressing social justice or human rights problem and provide concrete ways for photographers, organizations, and their target audiences to create a positive social impact....


James F. and Marion L. Miller Foundation Accepting Applications for Arts and Education Programs  - DEADLINE: July 21, 2014

Grants will be awarded in support of arts organizations and programming and K-12 education organizations in Oregon....


Lincoln Financial Group Invites Submissions for 2014 Lincoln's Legacy Award  - DEADLINE: June 6, 2014

A $50,000 grant will be awarded to a nonprofit organization whose programs have boosted high school graduation rates and college preparedness....


Sun Life Financial Invites Applications From Nonprofit Organizations for Rising Star Awards  - DEADLINE: June 9, 2014

Grants of $50,000 will be awarded to nonprofit organizations working to promote the academic achievement of underserved youth in Boston, Nashville, San Francisco, South Florida, and the Tulsa/Oklahoma City area....


National Resource Center for First-Year Experience Invites Applications for Paul F. Fidler Research Grants  - DEADLINE: July 1, 2014

One grant of $5,000 will be awarded for a project aimed at improving the experiences of college students transitioning into and through higher education....


International Reading Association Invites Applications for Regie Routman Teacher Recognition Grant  - DEADLINE: November 15, 2014

A grant of $2,500 will be awarded to an outstanding elementary school teacher dedicated to improving teaching and learning of reading and writing across the curriculum....


National Weather Association Invites Applications for K-12 Meteorological Education Projects  - DEADLINE: June 1, 2014

Grants of up to $750 will be awarded to help teachers and others improve K-12 education in meteorology and related sciences....


L'Oreal Paris Seeking Nominations for 2014 Women of Worth Awards - DEADLINE: June 25, 2014

Ten women will receive $10,000 each in recognition of their efforts to make a difference in the world through voluntarism....


THE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE is offering grants to states, local government, and Indian Tribes for funding to help the transitions of individuals leaving prison and jail and returning to society. Deadline: 6/2/2014. Click here for more information and to apply.


USDA is offering grants to collaborative state, tribal, local, or regionally-based networks or partnerships of qualified public and/or private entities including community-based organizations for the Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program.  Deadline to apply: 6/12/2014. For application requirements, click  here.


THE NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION is offering grants to nonprofits, public agencies, and others for STEM Learning Projects. Deadline: 7/10/2014. Grants will be offered to advance new approaches to and evidence-based understanding of the design and development of STEM learning in informal environments.  They will also provide multiple pathways for broadening access to STEM learning experiences, and provide other activities. Click here for guidelines and an application.  


USDA announced that it will be accepting applications for other new Rural Business Investment Companies.  Deadline to apply: 7/29/2014. Any application accepted after this deadline will be held for consideration next year. Application materials can be downloaded here.  


The IRS has announced a funding opportunity today with the opening of the application period for eligible organizations to administer/operate the Volunteer Income Assistance Tax Program.  The IRS provides grants to organizations to achieve the following program objectives:

1)Enable the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Program to extend services to underserved populations in hardest-to-reach areas, both urban and non-urban;

2)Increase the capacity to file returns electronically;

3)Heighten quality control;

4)Enhance training of volunteers; and

5)Improve significantly the accuracy rate of returns prepared at VITA sites.

The VITA Grant program supplements the work already being done in the VITA Program by providing support to help organizations grow their existing programs.






1) The April 23, 2014 FEDERAL REGISTER contains the Request for Information from the three Departments with twelve proffered questions for examination and response.  The Departments of Education, Health and Human Services, and Labor seek to further support the development of high-quality career pathways systems by jointly soliciting information and recommendations from a broad array of stakeholders in the public and private sectors, as well as in State, regional, tribal, and local areas.  The information collection from the RFI will be used to:

(1) Inform and coordinate policy development, strategic investments, and technical assistance activities; and

(2) improve coordination of Federal policy development with investments at the State, tribal and local levels.

Responses must be received by June 9, 2014.


Who Should Respond: (The Departments) invite practitioners, policy makers, funders, business and industry associations, and researchers to provide information, including those who are, or those who work in:

·         Employers, Businesses, and/or Associations of Employers, such as local and regional employers and businesses, trade/industry associations, and others.

·         Education, such as State and local agencies; adult education, corrections/re-entry, elementary/secondary special education, and career and technical education programs; community and technical colleges; institutions of higher education; tribal, community, and faith-based organizations; youth service providers; and student organizations.

·         Workforce Development, such as State, regional, tribal and local agencies; youth service providers; State and local workforce investment boards; training providers; community- and faith-based organizations; workforce intermediaries; sector-based training partnerships; American Job Centers; Registered Apprenticeship programs; student organizations (career-focused); and others in the workforce development field.

·         Human Services, such as State, tribal, and local TANF agencies; and community- and faith-based organizations.

·         Economic Development, such as State and local agencies, regional skills partnerships, planning and development organizations, area development districts, councils of governments, economic development associations, and economic development corporations. Others, such as research organizations, philanthropic funders, advocacy organizations, think tanks, and associations.


2) EPA Solicits Public Comments on Action Plan for RE-Powering America’s Land

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is seeking public comments on the draft action plan for its RE-Powering America’s Land Initiative. The plan guides EPA’s efforts over the next two years to encourage renewable energy development on current and formerly contaminated lands, landfills and mine sites when such development is aligned with the community’s vision for the site. The cleanup of contaminated land and the production of renewable energy will provide long-term improvements to air quality in communities, while protecting public health.

In 2010, the RE-Powering America’s Land Initiative published its first management plan to provide a useful framework to engage stakeholders on the potential to site renewable energy on contaminated lands and track progress. This second action plan, Action Plan 2.0, identifies activities planned for the next two years.

The agency will solicit comments for 30 days. Comments on the proposed plan are due by Friday, May 30.To submit a comment, please send to

A copy of the draft Action Plan 2.0:



Suzette M. Agans

Community and Economic Development
Rural Development | U.S. Department of Agriculture
1400 Independence Ave., S.W. | Washington, D.C. 20250-3253
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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