Selected Federal Agency Announcements and Related for the Week of April 16, 2018

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 developmentSpecial thanks to ETA and other federal partners for sharing content included below.

Features this week include newly announced grant opportunities from EDA for Disaster Recovery, as well as EPA on water infrastructure,   the Manufacturing USA Institute – RAPID on workforce for advanced manufacturing, and DOL ETA on occupational licensing certifications.

Also visit the following links on our updated EDI webpages at 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.

Funding & Resource Announcements

Announcements of Federal Funding & Assistance Available:


NEW Disaster Recovery –EDA Announces $587M in Supplemental Funding for Recovery from Major Disasters of 2017

Under the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018 (PL 115-123) (PDF), Congress appropriated additional Program funds to EDA for disaster relief and recovery as a result of Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria, wildfires and other calendar year 2017 natural disasters.

EDA has issued a NOFO (EDA-2018-DISASTER) inviting applications for $587 million in grants available to eligible entities to address economic challenges in disaster-impacted areas. 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 disaster grants will be made by regional offices under the Economic Adjustment Assistance (EAA) program, which can support a wide range of construction and non-construction activities. Through this program, EDA can support disaster recovery planning strategies as well as the implementation of disaster recovery projects. Projects, among other things, must have a nexus to applicable disaster recovery and resilience efforts and be consistent with at least one of the DOC Disaster Recovery Investment Priorities. EDA plans to accept proposals on a rolling basis until all funds are obligated.


NEW Water Infrastructure – EPA Credit Assistance Available for Regional Water Projects. Submit LOI by Jul 6.

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced the availability of funding that could provide as much as $5.5 billion in loans, which could leverage over $11 billion in water infrastructure projects through the Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA) program. Established by the Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act of 2014, the WIFIA program is a federal loan and guarantee program at EPA that aims to accelerate investment in the nation’s water infrastructure by providing long-term, low-cost supplemental loans for regionally and nationally significant projects.


Prospective borrowers seeking WIFIA credit assistance must submit a letter of interest (LOI) by July 6, 2018. This year’s Notice of Funding Availability (NOFA) highlights the importance of protecting public health including reducing exposure to lead and other contaminants in drinking water systems and updating the nation’s aging infrastructure. WIFIA credit assistance can be used for a wide range of projects, including:

  • Drinking water treatment and distribution projects;
  • Wastewater conveyance and treatment projects;
  • Enhanced energy efficiency projects at drinking water and wastewater facilities;
  • Desalination, aquifer recharge, alternative water supply, and water recycling project; and
  • Drought prevention, reduction, or mitigation projects.

For more information about WIFIA and this funding announcement, visit:


NEW Advanced Manufacturing and Workforce –RAPID Manufacturing Institute Calls for Proposals by May 22

The RAPID Manufacturing Institute, a Manufacturing USA Institute established by US Department of Energy, has two calls for project proposals that are now open for submission. The Rapid Advancement in Process Intensification Deployment (RAPID) Institute is focused on addressing the barriers listed above to enable the development of breakthrough technologies to boost energy productivity and energy efficiency through manufacturing processes in industries such oil and gas, pulp and paper and various domestic chemical manufacturers.

This call is unique as it solicits proposals on Education and Workforce Development (EWD) in addition to technical proposals. The EWD proposals are to develop and provide a face-to-face training course that is hands-on, project-based, inquiry-based or lab-based, is 2-5 days in duration, and is targeted to graduate students and professional engineers. The training developed will be available to current RAPID members in good standing. All proposals, whether technical or educational, should advance technical knowledge in one or more of RAPID’s focus areas: Modeling and Simulation, Module Manufacturing, Intensified Process Fundamentals, Renewable Bioproducts, Chemicals and Commodities Processing, and Natural Gas Upgrading. Both project calls will close in May.

Visit the RAPID website and membership areas for more information.


NEW Workforce Development – ETA Funding Opportunity to Support the State Occupational Licensing Review and Reform Grant Program. Due May 14

The Department of Labor’s Employment and Training Administration (ETA) has announced the availability of approximately $4.5 million in grant funds for the State Occupational Licensing Review and Reform grant program.

  • Individual states can apply for between $100,000 and $450,000 for a three-year grant.
  • The Department intends to fund approximately 10-20 states, and may also fund associations of states.
  • The overarching goal of this grant program is to provide states with the means to review and streamline occupational licensing requirements in state-identified occupations and to promote portability of state licenses to and from other states, which is of particular concern to dislocated workers and military families.

Applications are due by May 14. For details see Opportunity Number FOA-ETA-18-06 at, and DOL News Release


Brownfields RLF – EPA Announces $7M to Supplement FY18 Loan Funds. Apply by April 13.

EPA has funds available to supplement eligible Brownfields Revolving Loan Fund (RLF) grants. Specific information on eligibility and criteria for submitting a request can be obtained by contacting your EPA Brownfields Coordinator listed in the Federal Register Notice (see link below). Requests for funding must be postmarked by April 13, 2018. For details see: FY 2018 Supplemental Funding for Brownfields RLF Grantees (Federal Register Notice).


Brownfields and Capacity Building: NPS Groundwork Program – Letter of Interest Due Apr 30

Groundwork USA, in partnership with the National Parks Service and EPA, is accepting Letters of Interest from communities wishing to form a nonprofit trust to improve the environmental, economic and social conditions in communities impacted by brownfields and derelict lands. Submit Letter of Interest by April 30, 2018. Click here for more info.


Coal Impacted Communities – ARC FY18 POWER Grants. Apply by May 1.

The Appalachian Regional Commission has issued an RFP for its Partnerships for Opportunity and Workforce and Economic Revitalization (POWER) Initiative, for communities affected by job loss in the coal mining industry. The POWER FY18 grant competition will be structured in two cycles: Cycle 1 deadline: May 1, 2018.; Cycle 2 deadline: July 27, 2018. Up to 70% of available POWER FY18 funds will be awarded in Cycle 1. For more information visit:


Rural Broadband Loans – USDA Rural Broadband Access Loans and Loan Guarantees Program

USDA’s Rural Utilities Service is accepting applications for fiscal year (FY) 2018 for the Rural Broadband Access Loans and Loan Guarantees Program (the Broadband Program). Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis throughout FY 2018. Applications can only be submitted online through the RD Apply website at through  September 30, 2018.

Full background man be found at


Grants for New Product R&D – NSF Funds Small Business R&D for Science and Technology Products. Apply by June 14.

The National Science Foundation’s Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs seek innovative proposals that show promise of commercial and societal impact. Information on science and technology topics of interest is available here). Further information about the program is available at

Previously Announced Federal Funding Opportunities Closing Soon:  

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

Opportunity Number Opportunity Title Agency Posted Date Close Date
EPA-HQ-OPPT-2018-001 FY 2018 – FY 2019 Pollution Prevention Grant Program EPA 03/01/2018 04/26/2018
RDBCP-REAP-EEI-2018 USDA Renewable Energy Systems and Energy Efficiency Improvements Program USDA-RBCS 03/27/2018 04/30/2018
USDA-FS-UCF-01-2019 2019 National Urban and Community Forestry Grant Program USDA-FS 01/31/2018 04/30/2018
P18AS00071 Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) Grant Program DOI-NPS 02/28/2018 05/01/2018
BOR-DO-18-F002 Desalination and Water Purification Research Program for Fiscal Year 2018 DOI-BOR 02/27/2018 05/01/2018
OIT-STEP-2018-01 State Trade Expansion Program (STEP) SBA 03/30/2018 05/02/2018
FOA-ETA-18-02 Reentry Projects (RP) DOL-ETA 04/04/2018 05/04/2018
USDA-AMS-TM-LFPP-G-18-0001 Local Food Promotion Program USDA-AMS 03/07/2018 05/07/2018
USDA-AMS-TM-FMPP-G-18-0002 Farmers Market Promotion Program USDA-AMS 03/07/2018 05/07/2018
NOAA-NMFS-HCOP-2018-2005502 NOAA Coastal Resilience Grants Program (FY 2018) DOC 01/24/2018 05/07/2018
FOA-VETS-18-01 Homeless Veterans’ Reintegration Program (HVRP), including Incarcerated Veterans Transition,  Homeless Female Veterans and Homeless Veterans with Families DOL-ETA-VETS 04/06/2018 05/07/2018
P18AS00081 Historic Preservation Fund Grants-in-Aid: Tribal Heritage Grants DOI-NPS 03/01/2018 05/11/2018
RDRUS-CC-2018 Community Connect Grant Program USDA-RUS 03/15/2018 05/14/2018
FOA-ETA-18-06 State Occupational Licensing Review and Reform DOL-ETA 04/12/2018 05/14/2018
N00014-18-S-F005 FY 2018 FOA for DOD’s Office of Naval Research (ONR) Manufacturing Engineering Education Program DOD-ONR 01/12/2018 05/16/2018
USDA-NIFA-SRGP-006544 Special Research Grants Program – Aquaculture Research USDA-NIFA 04/03/2018 05/17/2018
USDA-AMS-TM-SCBGP-G-18-0003 Specialty Crop Block Grant Program – Farm Bill USDA-AMS 03/07/2018 05/24/2018
USDA-NRCS-PR-CIG-001 NRCS’ Conservation Innovation Grants (CIG) for FY 2018 – Caribbean Area USDA-NRCS 03/30/2018 05/30/2018
FMCS-2018 Labor-Management Cooperation Grant Program FMCS 03/12/2018 05/31/2018
RUS-18-01-DLT Distance Learning and Telemedicine Grant Program USDA-RUS 04/05/2018 06/04/2018
USDA-NIFA-FSMA-006549 Food Safety Outreach Competitive Grant Program 2018 USDA-NIFA 04/16/2018 06/07/2018
NNH18ZDA001N-DISASTERS ROSES 2018: Earth Science Applications: Disaster Risk Reduction and Response NASA-HQ 02/15/2018 06/14/2018
DE-FOA-0001755 Industry Partnerships for Cybersecurity of Energy Delivery Systems (CEDS) Research, Development and Demonstration DOE-NETL 04/16/2018 06/18/2018
NSF 17-590 Improving Undergraduate STEM Education: Education and Human Resources NSF 08/22/2017 10/01/2018


Public Meetings, Events and Training

NEW April 18 Broadband USA Webinar: How Smart States are Using Innovative Techniques to Enhance Technology Use

The National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), part of the U.S. Department of Commerce, is the principal advisor to the administration on telecommunications and information policy issues. NTIA, through its BroadbandUSA program, works to further the deployment and use of broadband and other technologies across America.  In BroadbandUSA’s Practical Conversations April webinar representatives from three states and a moderator from the National Governors Association will provide examples of how they are changing healthcare delivery, improving disaster mitigation, controlling traffic and lighting, creating economic growth and enhancing public safety.

Date:   Wednesday, April 18, 2018
Time:  2:00 to 3:00 p.m. ET

Please pre-register for the webinar using this registration link

Visit Broadband USA’s webinar archives for past presentations, transcripts and audio recordings. Check out for more information.


NEW: April 18 Webinar: Census Bureau and LED Partnership Present “Quarterly Workforce Indicator in Census Business Builder”

The U.S. Census Bureau and the Local Employment Dynamics (LED) Partnership in collaboration with the Council for Community and Economic Research (C2ER), welcomes Andrew Hait as he presents, “Quarterly Workforce Indicator (QWI) in Census Business Builder.” QWI data was recently added to the Census Business Builder (CBB) tool – in both the Small Business Edition and the Regional Analyst Edition.


NEW: May 3 Public Meeting – National Advisory Council on Innovation and Entrepreneurship

 The National Advisory Council on Innovation and Entrepreneurship (NACIE) will hold a public meeting on Thursday, May 3, 2018, from 1:30pm – 5:30pm Eastern Time (ET). Members will hear from Federal innovation and entrepreneurship policymakers and discuss potential policies that would foster innovation, increase the rate of technology commercialization, and catalyze the creation of jobs in the United States. Topics to be covered include increasing early-stage high-growth company exports, increased economic dynamism through innovation and entrepreneurship, apprenticeships in entrepreneurship and high-growth technology sectors, alignment of federal innovation and entrepreneurship policies and programs, and the principles set forth in NACIE’s recommendation entitled “Making America Competitive through Innovation, Entrepreneurship, and Productivity.”

Teleconference and/or web conference connection information will be published prior to the meeting on the NACIE website at See federal register notice for more information.


NEW June 8 Meeting – Federal Economic Statistics Advisory Committee

The Census Bureau has announced a meeting of the Federal Economic Statistics Advisory Committee (FESAC). The Committee advises the Under Secretary for Economic Affairs, the Directors of the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) and the Census Bureau, and the Commissioner of the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) on statistical methodology and other technical matters related to the collection, tabulation, and analysis of federal economic statistics.

The June 8 meeting will take place from 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m at the U.S. Census Bureau Conference Center,4600 Silver Hill Road, Suitland, MD 20746. Register by Friday, June 1, 2018 at: An agenda will be accessible before the meeting at the following link:


NEW Nov 6-7 National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education Conference, in Miami FL.

The U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) granted FIU, and its partner New America, a cooperative agreement to host the annual National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education (NICE) Conference and Expo over the next five years.

The National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education led by The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in the U.S. Commerce Department’s partnership between government, academia and the private sector focusing on cybersecurity education, training and workforce development. Its mission is to energize and promote a robust network and an ecosystem of cybersecurity education, training, and workforce development.

The NICE Conference and Expo brings together leaders from public and private sectors to examine challenges and opportunities for higher education and industry to address growing cybersecurity workforce shortages. This year’s conference will be held in Miami, FL from November 6-7, with the conference expanding to other major cities around the U.S in the future.

For more information regarding the 2018 NICE Conference and Expo, visit


Reports, Tools and Data

NEW – Executive Order Reducing Poverty in America by Promoting Opportunity and Economic Mobility

The Executive Order Reducing Poverty in America by Promoting Opportunity and Economic Mobility was issued on April 10.   The Executive Order summaries the purpose, policy, definitions and guidance documents to support the goals of the EO. Follow this link to view the executive order:

NEW: US Dpt of ED Publishes “Stackable Credentials Toolkit”

The Office of Career, Technical, and Adult Education has recently released a “Stackable Credentials Tool Kit” available here: https://Stackable_Credentials_Tool_Kit_20180401.pdf

From the Introduction:

Mapping Upward was a two-year project of the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Career, Technical, and Adult Education (OCTAE) that concluded in September 2017. It provided technical assistance (TA) to 13 community colleges in their efforts to embed stackable credentials within technical associate degree programs.  The project supported the approach by community and technical colleges of embedding “stackable” certificates aligned to industry certifications within associate degrees. This approach has emerged in recent years as a practical way of helping students progress along the education continuum while earning credentials with labor market value. By organizing programs into a series of certificates that build on each other, colleges can offer incremental milestones on the path to associate degree completion.


NEW Credential Engine Report: Counting U.S. Secondary and Postsecondary Credentials

Credential Engine engaged the Center for Regional Economic Competitiveness (CREC) and the George Washington University Institute of Public Policy (GWIPP) to estimate the number of credentials in the U.S. The review covered several credential types, including high school diplomas; postsecondary degrees; apprenticeships; occupational licenses; certifications; noncredit certificates; and emerging credentials such as badges, Nanodegrees, and MicroMasters.  Researchers indicated there are well over 300,000 confirmed credentials currently available in the United States alone. For many of the credential types our researchers looked into, there are not yet  sufficient or reliable data sources to capture an accurate count, indicating the true total number of credentials is likely significantly higher.

Following this inventory report, the Credential Engine plans to pursue additional research to answer questions surrounding the value of each credential for different audiences and purposes. See

NEW GAO Publishes “Assessment Methodology – Economic Analysis”

The General Accountability Office identifies five key methodological elements to the baseline structure of an economic analysis: Objective and scope, Methodology, Analysis of effects, Transparency and Documentation. GAO’s assessment methodology evaluates each key element and provides an overall assessment based on the assessment of the individual key elements.

GAO prepared this report (released on April 10) to answer the question: What are key methodological elements of an economic analysis that is intended to inform decision-makers and stakeholders?



Treasury Departments Launches “Data Lab”; Improved Visualization of USA Data, the one-stop shop for government spending data created by the 2014 Digital Accountability and Transparency Act (DATA Act), is a veritable treasure trove of information on how the government spends its money. The Data Lab, which officially launched on April 5, is a home for data visualizations based on data.

The site launched with six visualizations, including a federal accounts dendrogram showing the nearly 2,000 federal bank accounts and a sunburst diagram looking at “how nearly $500 billion is spent each year on contracts.” It’s also posting the code for each visualization to GitHub to encourage other developers to use it for their own projects or purposes.


CEDS Central –Free Resource and Training Archive for Regional Partners

CEDS Central serves as the Resource and Training Archive for materials developed by the NADO Research Foundation (NADO RF) as part of its Stronger CEDS, Stronger Region program, funded by the U.S. Economic Development Administration. The free materials archived there include reports, case studies, videos, webinars, and presentation materials on planning, developing, and implementing the CEDS. See:


Disaster Recovery Resources & Info

Primary site for Disaster Recovery Assistance:

Funding Assistance for Recovery Efforts:

NEW EDA Issues NOFO for $587M in Supplemental Funding for Areas Impacted by 2017 Hurricanes, Wildfires and Other Disasters

As noted above, EDA has issued a NOFO (EDA-2018-DISASTER) inviting applications for $587 million in grants available to eligible entities to address economic challenges in disaster-impacted areas. 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. See listing above and these links below for details:


NEW – HUD Awards Nearly $28 Billion to Help Nine States, Puerto Rico, and Virgin Islands from Major Disasters

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has awarded nearly $28 billion to support long-term disaster recovery in hard-hit areas in nine states, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. These funds are provided through HUD’s Community Development Block Grant – Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DR) Program and will address seriously damaged housing, businesses and infrastructure from major disasters that occurred since 2015.

The grants announced by HUD represent the largest single amount of disaster recovery assistance in HUD’s history and include more than $12 billion for major disasters that occurred in 2017 and nearly $16 billion to support ‘mitigation’ activities in areas that experienced major Presidentially declared disasters since 2015.  Mitigation can broadly be described as actions taken to protect communities from the predictable damage from future events.

The listing of all States and territories with subtotals and totals can be found at

NEW – USDA Announces $2.36 B Available through WHIP Program to Help Agricultural Producers Recover after 2017 Hurricanes and Wildfires

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue announced on April 6 that the U.S. Department of Agriculture will make disaster payments of up to $2.36 billion, as provided by Congress, to help America’s farmers and ranchers recover from hurricanes and wildfires. The funds are available as part of the new 2017 Wildfires and Hurricanes Indemnity Program (2017 WHIP). Sign-up for the new program, authorized by the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018, will begin no later than July 16.

Full background:


NEW – EPA Announces Puerto Rico Youth and the Environment Program – Apply by May 25

EPA-R2-CWD-FO-001: Puerto Rico Youth and the Environment Program. Posted 04/12/2018.

EPA Region 2 is soliciting grant applications from eligible applicants for the development of projects in Puerto Rico for eligible post-Hurricane Maria restoration activities in the (1) Vieques Bioluminescent Mosquito Bay; and (2) San Juan Bay Estuary, that involve training, studies and/or demonstrations relating to the reduction of the sedimentation load; elimination of water pollution; and/or the development of an environmental education program and materials through the Youth and the Environment program. Project activities may include, but are not limited to the training of no fewer than 2 ten (10) youths in their respective communities of Vieques and San Juan Bay. The youths will work 10 hours each week for 16 weeks, and will be employed from June to October. The young participants who are recruited will be trained primarily on environmental and community assessment, skills development and mentorship. Eligible activities must support the post-Hurricane Maria environmental restoration and relief effort.  Link to Additional Information


USDA FY18 Conservation Innovation Grants Avail for PR and USVI

USDA-NRCS-PR-CIG-001  USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) has posted a Funding Opportunity for its FY18 Conservation Innovation Grants (CIG) – Caribbean Area. Applications will be accepted from eligible entities for projects carried out in the USDA Caribbean Area: Puerto Rico and US Virgin Islands. CIG grants are designed to stimulate the development and adoption of innovative conservation approaches and technologies. A total of up to $250,000.00 is available for CIG in FY 2018. The maximum for a single award is $75,000.00.  FY18 Proposals must explicitly state which priority(ies) and sub-prority(ies) are being addressed. Caribbean Area CIG Priorities for FY 2018 are:

  1. Steep land Agricultural Technology;
  2. Renewable energy on Agricultural Enterprises and
  3. Risk Prevention and Management of Natural Resources affected by Natural Disasters.

See full announcement for subpriorities and additional instructions:

APPLICATIONS DUE by 4 p.m. Eastern Time on May 30, 2018. Submit electronically through In addition, a PDF of the complete application must be emailed to [email protected].


NIH RFA: Research on Health Risk and Resilience after Hurricanes Irma and Maria. Applications Due April 16

RFA-MD-18-006 The purpose of this initiative is to support time-sensitive research on risk and resilience factors related to short and long-term health outcomes following Hurricanes Irma and Maria in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Applicant organizations must be U.S. organizations physically located in Puerto Rico or the U.S. Virgin Islands. This initiative will use a shortened submission timeline with expedited peer review, council concurrence and award issuance. The entire cycle, from submission to award, is expected to be within 3-4 months. Application deadline is April 16. Follow this link for more info: Apply Now


Funding Opportunity for Gulf Coast States Recovering from Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill (AL, FL, LA, MS, TX). Deadline April 30.

Member agencies and states of the Gulf Coast Ecosystem Restoration Council (Council) may submit applications under the RESTORE ACT, to fund activities to enhance collaboration, coordination, public engagement, and use of best available science. Details are available at: Applications for project funding will be accepted until April 30, 2018


Related Resources – NonFederal:

NEW April 18 Webcast – Lessons from Harvey and Irma – How the FL & TX Grid Handled the Storms

POWERGRID International’s upcoming free webcast on Wednesday, April 18th at 1pm ET, in which emergency management and communication leaders from Florida Power & Light, CenterPoint Energy and AEP Texas will detail how their utilities prepared for the historic storms and how they repaired the grid in their wakes. Senior Editor Rod Walton will moderate “Harvey and Irma: How the Grid Handled Storms for the Ages,” which will begin 1 p.m. Eastern Time and is sponsored by Clevest. The same presentations anchored an extremely popular hurricane mega-session at the DistribuTECH Conference and Exhibition three months ago in San Antonio.

Not only is this a grid success story, but it’s also about heroism and perseverance.. Click here to register for this free webcast.

Updates on FEMA Response in Puerto Rico and US Virgin Islands


Where to Find Federal Disaster Declarations

  • Is your home, business or community included in a federally declared emergency or disaster area? You can find the latest federal emergency and disaster declarations, as well as prior declarations for other areas, on FEMA’s disaster declarations webpage.

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.

These are posted in the Federal Register here:

Economic Recovery Support

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