Selected Federal Agency Announcements and Related for the Week of January 27, 2020

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.

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

OPPORTUNITY ZONES

EDA Announces New Opportunity Zone Resources

In January, EDA made available two new resources to support local development strategies that seek to increase investment and job growth in Opportunity Zones and other distressed areas:

NEW USA Opportunity Zone Mapping Tool

S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration (EDA), Indiana University (IU) and its Kelley School of Business launched the USA Opportunity Zones tool. The tool resides on the StatsAmerica platform.

This new web-based tool will help EDA-designated Economic Development Districts (EDDs) and other local economic and community developers and investors target private investment to economically-distressed areas where private investment may be eligible for capital gain tax incentives under the bipartisan Opportunity Zones initiative. The tool combines location information for OZs with reports that list the EDDs and University Center programs serving the area, as well as nearby EDA investments and other demographic and economic metrics.

  • View EDA investments in projects located in and around Opportunity Zones here.

NEW CEDS Guidance Updated with Opportunity Zone Resources.

EDA has updated the CEDS Content Guidelines to help communities across the country to maximize their ability to attract investment to Opportunity Zones. The recommendations outline how communities can further promote the economic attractiveness of their region by emphasizing Opportunity Zones as key investment ready locations. The CEDS content guidelines including information pertaining to Opportunity Zones is located here or in the full CEDS content guidelines located here.

More resources to help communities leverage their OZ designations:

UPDATED  Compilation of Federal Actions and Resources supporting OZs

View a full listing of actions taken by federal agencies to support Opportunity Zones, as well as a host of other resources for Local Leaders, Investors and Entrepreneurs in Opportunity Zones on the Opportunity Now, Opportunity Zones website hosted by HUD here.

Final Regulations on Opportunity Zones

Final rules issued by US Treasury and IRS in December 2019  provide clarity on determining qualification and levels of new investment in OZs, as well as clarification of rules regarding OZ investments for development of Brownfields. Learn more about OZ tax advantages and rules at www.irs.gov , including their updated FAQs.

 

DISASTER RECOVERY, RESILIENCE AND MITIGATION

Closes Jan 31 – FEMA FY19 Pre-Disaster Mitigation Program Funding.

The Pre-Disaster Mitigation (PDM) program makes available Federal funds to State, Local and Tribal Governments to implement and sustain cost-effective measures designed to reduce the risk to individuals and property from natural hazards, while also reducing reliance on Federal funding from future disasters. Visit Grants.gov for full details.

 

NEW:   NIST Funding Available for MEP Disaster Assessment Program

NIST invites applications from current recipients of Manufacturing Extension Partnership Center cooperative agreements (MEP Centers) to perform assessments of small- and medium-sized manufacturers (SMMs) in areas subject to a FEMA Disaster Declaration under the NIST MEP Disaster Assessment Program. These assessments should be designed to identify the impact, if any, to the operations of the SMMs as result of the subject disaster. MEP Centers receiving funding pursuant to this program must also assist impacted SMMs in identifying and accessing Federal, State and local resources to aid in business recovery efforts and, as appropriate, in the development of a risk mitigation plan for future disasters. Award recipients will further be required to share the results of their project, including disaster preparedness lessons learned and SMMs best practices, with other SMMs, NIST and the MEP National NetworkTM in order to help the SMM community with future disaster resilience planning efforts. This program is open, and applications will be accepted by NIST on a rolling basis based on the date of the subject FEMA Disaster Declaration. See NOFO (2020-NIST-MEP-MDAP-01) for full details.

 

Apply by Mar 26 – NOAA Environmental Resilience Education Programs

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced a funding opportunity to build environmental literacy of K-12 students and the public so they become knowledgeable of the ways to increase community resilience to extreme weather and/or other environmental hazards. See Grants.gov Opportunity Number: NOAA-SEC-OED-2020-2006190  for details.

 

INFRASTRUCTURE

Opening Jan 31: USDA RD New Round of Reconnect Program Funding for Rural Broadband

USDA will begin taking applications for the second round of $550 million in ReConnect Program loan and grant funding on January 31. USDA is making available approximately $200 million for grants, as well as up to $200 million for loan and grant combinations, and up to $200 million for low-interest loans. These funds will enable the federal government to continue to partner with the private sector and rural communities to build modern broadband infrastructure in areas with insufficient internet service. Applications for all funding products will be accepted in the same application window, which will close no later than March 16, 2020.  To learn more about eligibility, technical assistance and recent announcements, visit www.usda.gov/reconnect.

  • Applicant Workshops & TA: To assist potential providers with their applications, USDA is hosting technical assistance and training webinars across the country. To see an updated list of dates and locations, or to register for a workshop or webinar, visit usda.gov/reconnect/events.

 

Apply by Feb 3 – HUD CDBG Funding for Native American Communities.

Notice of Funding Availability for the Indian Community Development Block Grant Program (ICDBG) U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development will award up to $65 million to tribal programs through the ICDBG to develop viable Indian and Alaska Native communities by creating decent housing, suitable living environments, and economic opportunities primarily for persons with low- and moderate- incomes. Application Deadline: February 3, 2020.

  • TIP: For more current funding opportunities for Native American and Tribal Communities, see also USDA RD’s biweekly Innovation Matters Click to SUBSCRIBE

 

INNOVATION and TECHNOLOGY:

NEW: Concept Papers due Feb 25 – Energy Dpt’s $64M H2@Scale Initiative

U.S. Department of Energy announced up to $64 million in funding to advance innovations that will build new markets for the H2@Scale initiative. This investment will support transformational research and development (R&D), innovative hydrogen concepts that will encourage market expansion and increase the scale of hydrogen production, storage, transport, and use. Opportunities also exist in large-energy use applications for mobility, such as trucks, rail and marine, as well as in energy storage. Funding can support R&D in a range of areas from development of advanced materials and energy manufacturing processes, developing new markets for hydrogen based steel products, maritime, and data centers uses, and training and workforce strategies to develop the skills necessary to support the growing hydrogen and fuel cell industry.

Concept papers are due February 25, 2020 and full applications are due April 20, 2020. More information, application requirements, and instructions can be found on the EERE Exchange. Visit DOE’s webpage to learn more.

Apply by Feb 6: Funding Opportunity for Current MEP Centers

NIST invites proposals from current recipients of Manufacturing Extension Partnership Center cooperative agreements (MEP Centers) to deploy advanced manufacturing technology services to U.S. manufacturers in the broad area of Industry / Manufacturing 4.0, with an emphasis on serving the technology-based needs of small U.S. manufacturers (hereinafter referred to as small U.S. manufacturers). For full details, see NIST’s Notice of Funding Opportunity for the Advanced Manufacturing Technology Services program (2020-NIST-MEP-AMTS-01) here.

WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT

Apply by Mar 4 -Minority Serving Institutions Partnership Program

On December 30, DOE issued its Funding Opportunity Announcement DE-FOA-0002144 , for the 2020/2021 Minority Serving Institutions Partnership Program (MSIPP). Through this program, the Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration awards grants to Minority Serving Institutions (MSI) to prepare NNSA’s next-generation technical workforce. The program’s primary mission is to create and foster a sustainable STEM-pipeline that prepares a diverse workforce of world class talent through strategic partnerships between Minority Serving Institutions and the DOE/NNSA Enterprise. To execute this mission, MSIPP builds a network of NSE ready students through enrichment activities from K-20 to post-doctoral level. Through university-lab consortia partnerships students are exposed to cutting-edge research and activities in their relevant fields. Submission deadline for Applications is March 4, 2020.

 

Open Federal Funding Opportunities:  

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
PWEAA2020

 

FY 2020 EDA Public Works and Economic Adjustment Assistance Programs DOC-EDA   10/18/2019 Open
EDA-2019-DISASTER FY 2019 EDA Disaster Supplemental DOC-EDA   08/13/2019 Open
FR-6400-N-54 HUD’s FY2020 and FY2021 Distressed Cities TA Notice of Funding Availability (NOFA) HUD   11/26/2019 Open
693JJ319NF-NSFLTP Nationally Significant Federal Lands and Tribal Projects (NSFLTP) DOT-FHWA   10/04/2018 Open
DHS-19-MT-047-000-99 FY19 Pre-Disaster Mitigation DHS-DHS   09/09/2019 01/31/2020
 2020-NIST-MEP-AMTS-01 Advanced Manufacturing Technology Services DOC-NIST   12/23/2019 02/06/2020
DE-FOA-0002144 Minority Serving Institutions Partnership Program DOE-NNSA   12/30/2019 03/04/2020
EDA-HDQ-OIE-2020-2006301 Accelerate R2 Network Challenge – FINAL DOC   10/18/2019 03/11/2020
NOAA-SEC-OED-2020-2006190 Environmental Literacy Grants: Supporting the education of K-12 students and the public for community resilience DOC   10/15/2019 03/26/2020
CRNR-2020 Coral Reef and Natural Resources Program DOI   10/16/2019 04/01/2020
TAP-2020 Technical Assistance Program DOI   10/04/2019 04/01/2020
DE-FOA-0002229 Fiscal Year 2020 H2@Scale New Markets FOA DOE-GFO   01/23/2020 04/20/2020
2020-NIST-MEP-MDAP-01 NIST MEP Disaster Assessment Program DOC-NIST   01/17/2020  

Public Meetings, Events and Training

NEW: APLU’s Learning Exchange Forum: Rural Engagement for Resilient Communities

The American Public & Land-Grant Universities (APLU) is excited to provide a new monthly forum for those who are working in and/or are interested in supporting rural communities. Members of the forum will exchange best practices, engage philanthropic, private sector, and government funders, and more. Topics include:

  • MAY- Rural Opportunity Zones
  • JUNE- No Meeting. Join the CECE-CoR Joint Summer Meeting in State College, PA.
  • JULY- Infrastructure Development
  • AUGUST- Rural Workforce Development
  • SEPTEMBER- General Rural Economic and Demographic Trends
  • OCTOBER- Value Added Food Manufacturing

Learn more about the Learning Exchange Forum: Rural Engagement for Resilient Communities today!

Comment by Mar 20. HHS Seeking Input on Employment Training for Non-Resident Parents.

The Administration for Children and Families (ACF) seeks to further the development of employment programs for nonresident parents and is soliciting ideas and information from a broad array of stakeholders on improving nonresident parents’ employment outcomes, including how to create a comprehensive, multi-system approach that addresses multiple barriers that nonresident parents face when trying to support their children. ACF will analyze information collected from a November 20 RFI published in the FEDERAL REGISTER. Comments are due by March 20, 2020. Questions, comments, and supplementary documents can be submitted to nonresidentemploymentRFI@acf.hhs.gov.

 

Reports, Research and Tools

NEW: Annual Update of the HHS Poverty Guidelines

The Department of Health and Human Services has published the annual update of the HHS Poverty Guidelines.  The update accounts for last year’s increase in prices as measured by the Consumer Price Index. For related guidelines, also see the Department of Labor ETA’s Lower Living Standard Income Level Guidelines

NEW: GAO Report on Evidence-Based Policymaking

In December, GAO issued a report on Evidenced Based Policy Making by three agencies: Departments of Labor and Health and Human Services, and the Corporation for National and Community Service.  GAO was asked to examine the coordination of federal evidence-building activities. This report (1) describes selected agencies’ actions that align with direction from Congress and OMB to strengthen evidence-building activities and (2) examines the extent to which selected agencies’ processes for coordinating those activities reflect leading practices for collaboration. To read more, see the “GAO Report on Evidence Based Policymaking: Selected Agencies Coordinate Activities, but Could Enhance Collaboration: GAO-20-119, December 4, 2019 “ here:

Small Business Administration Releases Fact Sheet on Growth in Number of Rural Business Establishments

Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs) are defined around areas of high population density.  A comparison of counties within MSAs to those outside reveals how growth has varied between metropolitan and rural areas.  Since 2000, the number of establishments in metropolitan counties has grown by 30.9 percent, while the number in rural counties has grown by only 7.2 percent.  More information on trends can be found in the Small Business Administration’s Office of Advocacy’s “Small Business Facts: Growth in Number of Rural Establishments.”

Atlanta Federal Reserve Bank Report on Bridging the Gap between Economic and Workforce Development

As part of the Investing in America’s Workforce initiative, the Cleveland Fed’s Drew Pack and Kyle Fee recently wrote Understanding the Disconnect between Economic Development and Workforce Development Systems. The report focuses on the alignment of these two systems and highlights the common barriers and opportunities for improving alignment across several metro areas. The report identifies challenges to alignment noted by local stakeholders and explores best practices to address these alignment challenges. View the full post here: https://www.frbatlanta.org/community-development/publications

 

Disaster Recovery Resources & Info

Where to Find Federal Disaster Declarations

  • 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.

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

Funding and other Assistance Available for Economic Recovery:

EDA Disaster Supplemental Funding Available for Areas Impacted by 2018/19 Disasters

EDA’s Fiscal Year 2019 (FY19) Disaster Supplemental Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO), made available $587 million for eligible grantees in communities impacted by Presidentially declared natural disasters in 2018, and by floods and tornadoes in 2019. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis until funds are exhausted. View Opportunity Number EDA-2019-DISASTER on Grants.gov,  and contact your EDA Regional Office representative for eligibility information and application assistance.

EPA Toolkit Features Resources to Prepare for Natural Disasters

The U.S. EPA Urban Waters Federal Partnership has released a new toolkit, How to Prepare for Natural Disasters: A Pre-Disaster Toolkit for Small to Medium-Sized Communities.  The toolkit has two sections – one for local government officials, including Emergency Management Coordinators (EMCs), utility district managers, and local elected officials – and a section for community residents. It provides information, tools and resources to help with planning for hurricanes, floods, and other natural disasters. Click here to access the toolkit.

HUD TA for Disaster Recovery in Distressed Cities.

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development is accepting requests for Technical Assistance (TA) under the new Distressed Cities Technical Assistance (DCTA) Program.  Note that HUD strongly encourages interested jurisdictions to contact your HUD Field Office prior to submitting a request for TA.

HUD Mitigation Funds Available through CDBG-MIT Program.

In August, HUD announced $16B in CDBG-MIT funds for eligible jurisdictions and states, impacted by major disasters in 2015-2017. CDBG-MIT funds are to be used for different purposes than HUD’s traditional disaster funding, or CDBG-DR funds.  It focuses on current and future risks, including actions communities can take to protect themselves from the predictable damage from future events.  HUD coordinated with FEMA for the development of the guidelines for this funding and is encouraging close coordination with FEMA’s hazard mitigation planning programs.  To learn more, view this recent HUD webinar on the CDBG-MIT program.

USDA Rural Housing Announced Availability of 2019 Disaster Relief Act Funds

USDA Rural Housing Service’s Community Facilities Program (CF) has supplemental grant funding available for necessary expenses related to the consequences of Hurricanes Michael and Florence and wildfires occurring in calendar year 2018, tornadoes and floods occurring in calendar year 2019, and other natural disasters. Submit applications through USDA State Office contacts, available here.

NEW DOL Awards $4 Million in Additional Disaster Recovery Funding to NC  to Continue Hurricane Florence Relief

The Department of Labor on 1/21/20 announced incremental funding of $4,000,000 for a Disaster Recovery National Dislocated Worker Grant to the North Carolina Department of Commerce in response to Hurricane Florence in September 2018. Funds will allow participants to complete remaining disaster-relief activities in 18 counties declared eligible for the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s Public Assistance Program.

In September 2018, the department approved the grant for up to $18,500,000, with an initial release of $9,109,181. The department provided an additional increment of $3,130,273 in July 2019 to continue the work of the project. Today’s funding brings the total awarded to this project to $16,239,454.

 

Economic Recovery Support & the National Disaster Response Framework

  • Read more about the Economic Recovery Support Function (ERSF) and the National Disaster Response Framework here.
  • See also the federal government’s primary site for Disaster Recovery Assistance.