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Rural Gateway Peer-to-Peer Conference Call: Rural Economic Development and Infrastructure: A Discussion of Best Practices - April 19, 2017 - 2 PM EDT

Rural Gateway Peer-to-Peer Conference Call
Rural Economic Development and Infrastructure: A Discussion of Best Practices
Date: April 19, 2017
Time: 2:00 p.m. EDT

The Office of Rural Housing and Economic Development (ORHED) invites you to take part in our next Peer-to-Peer conference call. Scheduled for April 19, 2017, this call will offer participants the opportunity to learn about available funding opportunities through the U.S. Department of Agriculture-Rural Development (USDA-RD), the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) and the Delta Regional Authority (DRA) for economic development and infrastructure activities.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture-Rural Development's mission is to help improve the economy and quality of life in rural America. Through their programs, USDA-RD helps rural Americans in many ways. They offer loans, grants and loan guarantees to support essential services such as housing, economic development, health care, first responder services and equipment, and water, electric and communications infrastructure. USDA-RD promotes economic development by supporting loans to businesses through banks, credit unions and community-managed lending pools. They offer technical assistance and information to help agricultural producers and cooperatives get started and improve the effectiveness of their operations. USDA-RD provides technical assistance to help communities undertake community empowerment programs and help rural residents buy or rent safe, affordable housing and make health and safety repairs to their homes.

The Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) mission is to innovate, partner, and invest to build community capacity and strengthen economic growth in Appalachia.  ARC is a regional economic development agency that represents a partnership of federal, state, and local government.  Established by an act of Congress in 1965, ARC is composed of the governors of the 13 Appalachian states and a federal co-chair, who is appointed by the president. Local participation is provided through multi-county local development districts. ARC invests in activities that address the five goals identified in the Commission's strategic plan: 1) Economic Opportunities; 2) Ready Workforce; 3) Critical Infrastructure; 4) Natural and Cultural Assets; and 5) Leadership and Community Capacity.

Each year ARC provides funding for several hundred investments in the Appalachian Region, in areas such as business development, education and job training, telecommunications, infrastructure, community development, housing, and transportation. These projects create thousands of new jobs; improve local water and sewer systems; increase school readiness; expand access to health care; assist local communities with strategic planning; and provide technical and managerial assistance to emerging businesses.

The Delta Regional Authority (DRA) works to improve regional economic opportunity by helping to create jobs, build communities, and improve the lives of the 10 million people who reside in the 252 counties and parishes of the eight-state Delta region. Led by the Delta Regional Authority Board -comprised of the Federal Co-Chairman, appointed by the President and confirmed by the U.S. Senate, and the governors of the eight states-the Delta Regional Authority fosters local and regional partnerships that address economic and social challenges to ultimately strengthen the Delta economy and the quality of life for Delta residents.

Established in 2000 by Congress, the DRA makes strategic investments of federal appropriations into the physical and human infrastructure of Delta communities. Through the States' Economic Development Assistance Program, these investments help to improve transportation and basic public infrastructure and to strengthen our workforce development system and local business environments. The DRA supports job creation and economic development through innovative approaches to growing local and regional leadership, increasing access to quality healthcare, and boosting opportunities for entrepreneurs to obtain affordable capital.

Leaders of the USDA-RD, ARC, and DRA will share their knowledge of successfully implementing activities that have expanded and created opportunities for those living in rural communities. Participants will have the opportunity to ask questions about best practices and establish contacts for future reference.

Join HUD's Office of Rural Housing and Economic Development (ORHED), USDA-RD, ARC, and DRA staff as we engage community leaders in this open forum on rural economic development and infrastructure.  Speakers will include:

  • Jackie L. Williams, Ph.D., Moderator, Director, Office of Rural Housing and Economic Development, Community Planning and Development, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development;
  • Tedd Buelow, Acting State Director – Colorado, National Native American Coordinator, Rural Development, U. S. Department of Agriculture;
  • Karen Fabiano, POWER Initiative Manager, Appalachian Regional Commission;
  • Alex Holland, Director of Federal Affairs and Strategic Programs, Delta Regional Authority;
  • Brian Henson, Special Advisor for Congressional Affairs, Delta Regional Authority.

Topics to be discussed

  • Funding and technical assistance opportunities at the U.S. Department of Agriculture-Rural Development, the Appalachian Regional Commission, and the Delta Regional Authority for rural economic development and infrastructure.
  • Public and Private sources of funding to carry out projects.
  • Best practices and lessons-learned.

Format of the call

Please RSVP by email to rhed@hud.gov no later than close of business on Friday, April 14, 2017. Please include your name and organization.

Call-in instructions and additional materials will be emailed to participants on Tuesday, April 18, 2017. The 60 minute call will include presentations and a Q&A session.

If you have any questions, please call 1-877-RURAL-26 (1-877-787-2526).

         
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