Selected Federal Agency Announcements and Related for the Week of April 1, 2019

Highlights this week include:

The following is a selection of recent announcements gleaned from various federal sources and colleagues, and is provided to EDA’s Economic Development Integrators to increase our awareness of complementary resources for economic development. Special thanks to ETA and other federal partners for sharing content included below.

See more open funding opportunities at federal agencies on the EDI webpage at https://www.eda.gov/edi/assistance/

Also visit the following links on our updated EDI webpages at www.eda.gov/edi for additional information about federal resources that are available to support comprehensive regional economic development strategies, including:

Click here to view all weekly federal announcement posts.


Contents


Funding & Resource Announcements

ECONOMIC AND COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT PLANNING

Closing April 5: REDI Program – TA for Rural Economic Development Plans.

The Rural Economic Development Innovation (REDI) initiative application is now available for rural communities and regions to apply for free technical assistance to develop, and implement, economic development plans. This assistance is designed to assist communities to develop evidence-based assessments; quantifiable goals; plans to improve the local and regional economy; and metrics to track implementation and progress. Application Deadline: April 5, 2019. Download the application or request information at RD.Innovation@osec.usda.gov

INNOVATION & ENTREPRENEURSHIP

Closing April 4: EDA 2019 Regional Innovation Strategies Program

EDA is now accepting applications for the 2019 Regional Innovation Strategies (RIS) Program funding. The RIS Program, operated by EDA’s Office of Innovation and Entrepreneurship (OIE), again offers funding through two competitions: FY19 i6 Challenge and FY19 Seed Fund Support (SFS) Grant Competition. All applications must be submitted no later than 11:59pm ET on Thursday, April 4, 2019.

For more information on eligibility and how to apply through grants.gov, visit EDA’s Regional Innovation Strategies webpage.

NSF Invites Proposals for its Pilot Convergence Accelerator. Concept Paper due April 15.

The National Science Foundation has released a Dear Colleague Letter (DCL) for its pilot NSF Convergence Accelerator (C-Accel) activity, which aims to fund approximately 50 Phase 1 projects at up to $1 million each, with proposals due in the spring of 2019 and projects to start no later than the fall. In 2020, Phase 1 projects will be eligible to apply for Phase 2 C-Accel support, for up to $5 million.  Three tracks for projects are:

  • An Open Knowledge Network (as part of Harnessing the Data Revolution)
  • AI and Future Jobs (as part of Future of Work)
  • A National Talent Ecosystem (as part of Future of Work)

The DCL provides more detailed information about participating in the pilot Convergence Accelerator. The first step in participation, submission of a Research Concept Outline, is due April 15, with full proposals due by June 3.  Webinars to answer questions about the submission process or about C-Accel broadly will be held on March 27 and April 3 at 2 p.m.  Follow @NSF_OIA on Twitter for C-Accel updates. For more info, about the details of this DCL, contact C-Accel@nsf.gov

EPA Region 4 Announces Grants for Projects Advancing Sustainable Materials Management. Apply by May 10 (Southeastern US)

EPA is soliciting applications that accelerate substantial solutions or propose innovative ways of capturing, using, and reusing materials such as: (1) advancing the sustainable management of food (organics) through prevention, donation or recycling; (2) expanding, capturing and/or reusing glass cullet or the glass recycling infrastructure; (3) advancing recycling market development using clear marketing strategies for material reuse opportunities within the Southeast; and (4) advancing Sustainable Materials Management (SMM) in the built environment (including buildings, infrastructure, and resiliency). Priorities for this solicitation are economically-driven strategies to drive SMM of food, glass, recycling markets, and the built environment. Link to the application packet here: RFA NUMBER: EPA-R4-RCRD-19-01 (PDF)

 

SBA is Recruiting Participants for 2019 Emerging Leaders Initiative

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) announced the launch of the 2019 Emerging Leaders Initiative for executives of small businesses poised for growth in emerging markets. Local area recruitment for the 2019 training cycle is currently ongoing at designated SBA District Offices. Interested small business owners can learn more regarding eligibility, how to apply, class schedules, and locations at www.sba.gov/emergingleaders, or by contacting their local SBA District Office.

RURAL DEVELOPMENT

2019 POWER Initiative for Appalachian Coal Communities. Apply by April 10.

The Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) is accepting applications for the FY 2019 POWER (Partnership for Opportunity and Workforce and Economic Revitalization) Initiative. ARC’s POWER Initiative will continue focusing on regional investments that maximize economic revitalization in the Appalachian region’s coal-impacted communities.  Access the 2019 Request for Proposals (RFP) here.

 

INFRASTRUCTURE

Rural Broadband: FY19 Community Connect Grants Available. Apply by Apr 15.

RUS is now accepting applications for FY 2019 for the Community Connect Grants program. This program helps fund broadband deployment into rural communities where it is not yet economically viable for private sector providers to deliver service. The application window closes April 15, 2019. Applications for this program are serviced by RUS national office staff, available at community.connect@wdc.usda.gov.  See the Community Connect fact sheet, and the Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) for details.

 

NEW: USDA To Open Applications for Rural e-Connectivity Pilot Program On April 23.

Acting Assistant to the Secretary for Rural Development Joel Baxley announced that USDA Rural Development will begin accepting the first round of applications for the Rural e-Connectivity Pilot Program (ReConnect Program) on April 23, 2019, through reconnect.usda.gov.

USDA is making available up to $200 million in grants, $200 million in loan and grant combinations, and $200 million in low-interest loans to help build broadband infrastructure in rural America. The application deadlines are:

  • May 31, 2019, for grants;
  • June 21, 2019, for loan/grant combinations; and
  • July 12, 2019, for low-interest loans.

Applicants can request technical assistance from USDA by filling out the contact form at https://www.usda.gov/reconnect/contact-us.

The ReConnect Program enables USDA to create and implement innovative solutions to rural connectivity by providing various financial options to our partners and customers. For additional information, see page 5981 of the Feb. 25, 2019, Federal Register and page 64315 of the Dec. 14, 2018, Federal Register or visit reconnect.usda.gov.

NEW USDA Announces Funding Opportunity to Provide TA Grants for Rural Transportation Systems

The Department of Agriculture’s Rural-Business Cooperative Service is inviting applications for grants to provide Technical Assistance for Rural Transportation (RT) systems under the Rural Business Development Grant (RBDG) to provide Technical Assistance for RT systems and for RT systems to Federally Recognized Native American Tribes’ (FRNAT) (collectively “Programs”) and the terms provided in such funding. Successful applications will be selected by the Agency for funding and subsequently awarded from funds appropriated for the RBDG program.

The full announcement can be found in the March 27 FEDERAL REGISTER.  Note references to funding projects that benefit Opportunity Zones and communities responding to impacts from Opioid Misuse.

 

NEW: DOE Grants for Energy Infrastructure on Tribal Lands. Apply by May 1.

DE-FOA-0002032 FOA Deployment 2019   The Department of Energy has announced up to $17 million in new funding to deploy energy infrastructure on tribal lands. Grants will be awarded under three topic areas: 1) Install energy generating system(s) and/or energy efficiency measure(s) for Tribal Building(s); 2) Deploy community-scale energy generating system(s) on Tribal Lands; and 3) Install energy system(s) for autonomous operation (independent of the traditional centralized electric power grid) to power a single or multiple essential tribal facilities during emergency situations or for tribal community resilience.

 

An informational webinar was held March 14, 2019, to describe the FOA in detail, presenters discussed who is eligible to apply, what an application needs to include, cost share and other requirements, how to ask questions, and how applications will be selected for funding. Download and view the presentation.  The full funding opportunity is available online. Read more in the press release.

Federal Funding Opportunities Closing Soon:  

 

Below is a list of previously highlighted funding opportunities that are still open. Enter the Opportunity Number in Grants.gov to see announcement details. You can also search Grants.gov for a full list of current federal opportunities, including programs not listed below.

 

Opportunity Number Opportunity Title Agency Posted Date Close Date
EDA-HDQ-OIE-2019-2005942 FY 2019 Regional Innovation Strategies Program DOC 02/01/2019 04/04/2019
HHS-2018-ACF-ANA-NA-1339 Social and Economic Development Strategies –SEDS HHS-ACF-ANA 02/06/2018 04/15/2019
RDRUS-CC-2019 Community Connect Grant Program USDA-RUS 02/12/2019 04/15/2019
 

USDA-NIFA-CBGP-006696

1890 Institution Teaching, Research and Extension Capacity Building Grants (CBG) Program USDA-NIFA 02/14/2019 04/18/2019
 

BOR-DO-19-F007

WaterSMART: Title XVI Congressionally Authorized Water Reclamation and Reuse Projects DOI-BOR 03/04/2019 04/22/2019
DE-FOA-0001976 FY 2019 SBIR/STTR Phase II Release 2 PAMS-SC 03/04/2019 04/23/2019
BOR-DO-19-F005 WaterSMART Grants: Small-Scale Water Efficiency Projects for Fiscal Year 2019 DOI-BOR 01/24/2019 04/24/2019
EDAP2018 FY18 Economic Development Assistance Programs: Public Works and Economic Adjustment Assistance DOC-EDA 07/02/2018 Open
693JJ319NF-NSFLTP Nationally Significant Federal Lands and Tribal Projects (NSFLTP) DOT-FHWA 10/04/2018 Open
EPA-R4-RCRD-19-01 Advancing Sustainable Materials Management EPA 03/25/2019 05/10/2019

Public Meetings, Events and Training

 

Begins April 1:  Census Bureau to Offer Free Online Trainings on Access and Use of Its Statistics

The U.S. Census Bureau will conduct a series of free data access webinars to all interested data users. Attendees will learn how to access demographic, socioeconomic, housing and business data from the Decennial Census, American Community Survey, Local Employment Dynamics, Economic Programs and more.

When: April 1 – June 28, 2019.  All sessions are conducted by a representative from the Census Bureau and will last between 30 minutes to one hour. To learn about and register for the webinars, visit Census Academy

 

Begins April 2: Workshops on USDA ReConnect Program Opportunities

USDA is hosting technical assistance workshops for the new ReConnect Program. This program furnishes loans and grants to provide funds for the costs of construction, improvement, or acquisition of facilities and equipment needed to provide broadband service in eligible rural areas.

Technical Assistance Workshops:

April 9 & 30: UEDA Webinars on Innovation and Economic Prosperity:

The University Economic Development Association (UEDA) is the cornerstone membership organization representing higher education, private sector and community economic development stakeholders. The organization has announced a slate of upcoming webinars with an emphasis on innovation and economic resilience

  • April 9 (2:00 p.m. ET) The Best Approaches to Innovation at Innovation and Economic Prosperity Universities. Register: https://iep-innovation.eventbrite.com
  • April 30 (2:00 p.m. ET) The Best Approaches to Place at Innovation and Economic Prosperity Universities

Register: https://iep-place.eventbrite.com

 

  • UEDA Summit: Designing Resilient Regions. September 29 – October 2 (Reno-Tahoe, Nevada)

Details: http://www.uedaannualsummit.org (registration opening in March)

April 16 EPA Webinar: Identifying and Prioritizing Environmentally Impacted and Vulnerable Communities

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has announced training to build the capacity of states to integrate environmental justice into their decision-making process. Over the next year, EPA will conduct five national training webinar, to serve as an ongoing resource for state staff and others interested in developing their environmental justice knowledge and expertise. To complement the online trainings, EPA Regions will conduct training on environmental justice for their respective states. The first training webinar is entitled “Identifying and Prioritizing Environmentally Impacted and Vulnerable Communities.”

April 16-17: CDFA Federal Policy Conference; EDA, HUD, USDA, DOT, Treasury, EPA and SBA to Present Updates on Federal Financing

On April 16-17 in Washington DC, CDFA will host its 2019 CDFA Federal Policy Conference, featuring development finance experts and practitioners from key federal agencies, congressional offices, and policy organizations. The CDFA Federal Policy Conference will highlight rural and urban financing programs, the Opportunity Zones incentive, programs for supporting small business development, as well as financing programs for infrastructure, energy, brownfields remediation, and water systems financing. The event will be held at the Washington Marriott Georgetown, and space is limited to the first 250 attendees – register early to secure your seat!

 

NIH Online Course for Biomedical Innovators:  Applying for SBIR/STTR Funding

National Institutes of Health recently released a five-module online course for biomedical innovators considering funding through the NIH SBIR/STTR programs. For information on the latest SBIR/STTR Opportunities at NIH, visit https://sbir.nih.gov/ .


Reports, Tools and Data

NEW: BLS Releases Occupational Employment and Wages (May 2018)

The Bureau of Labor Statistics just released the Occupational Employment and Wages report for May 2018. Their news release features transportation and material moving; education, training, and library; and food preparation and serving related occupations, in addition to STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) occupations and employment and wages by typical entry-level educational requirement. National employment and wage information for all occupations is shown in table 1.

 

NEW: GAO Issues New Report on Coordination Across DOL Employment Training Programs.

The Government Accountability Office has released a report — Employment and Training Programs: Department of Labor Should Assess Efforts to Coordinate Services across Programs.  The highlights may be found here.

 


Disaster Recovery Resources & Info

Primary site for Disaster Recovery Assistance: https://www.disasterassistance.gov/

Where to Find Federal Disaster Declarations

 

  • Amended Declarations: Existing Declarations may be subsequently amended to expand covered areas, provide notification that an incident has been closed, or make other necessary changes.

Link: https://www.federalregister.gov/agencies/federal-emergency-management-agency#documents

Funding and other Assistance Available for Recovery:

EDA Has Supplemental Funding Available for Areas Impacted by 2017 Hurricanes, Wildfires and Other Disasters

These grants will support disaster recovery activities in areas receiving a major disaster designation as a result of Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, Maria, and wildfires and other 2017 natural disasters. EDA plans to accept proposals on a rolling basis until all funds are obligated.  Grants will be awarded on a competitive basis. See the following links for details:

 

Visit EDA’s Disaster Recovery web page to view the grants that EDA has already made (XLSX) through its 2018 Disaster Supplemental Appropriation.

Economic Recovery Support & the National Disaster Response Framework