Grants & Opportunities

Grants Webinars Workshops Conferences Publications

Grants

USDA Rural Business Development Grants
Deadline: Rolling
The USDA is currently accepting applications for Rural Business Development Grants. This competitive grant is designed to support targeted technical assistance, training, and other activities leading to the development or expansion of small and emerging private businesses in rural areas which will employ 50 or fewer new employees and have less than $1 million in gross revenue. Rural public entities including, but not limited to, towns, communities, state agencies, nonprofits corporations, federally-recognized tribes, institutions of higher education, and more are eligible to apply. There is no maximum grant amount; however, smaller requests are given higher priority. Generally, grants range from $10,000 to $500,000.

EDA Planning Program and Local Technical Assistance Program
Deadline: Rolling
The Economic Development Administration (EDA) is looking for applications that assist with the development of economic development plans and studies designed to build capacity and guide economic prosperity and resiliency in regions. The Planning Program helps with short-term state planning investments for the creation and retention of high-quality jobs. The Local Technical Assistance Program strengthens the capacity of local governments to undertake and promote effective economic development programs through feasibility studies and impact analyses.

TPCB Peer Program Application
Deadline: Rolling
The Transportation Planning Capacity Building (TPCB) Peer Program is a free resource for agencies in need of transportation planning assistance. The program pays for travel, accommodations, meals, and incidental expenses associated with on-site peer exchanges and offers workshops, roundtables, and webinars to participants free of charge. Interested agencies are encouraged to apply for assistance if they have a clearly identified transportation planning problem to solve and are interested in working with TPCB Program staff to plan and organize an event. TPCB also recently released two reports from peer exchanges in West Virginia and Las Vegas on transit-oriented development (TOD) and statewide and metropolitan transportation planning processes.

EDA Public Works and Economic Adjustment Assistance Programs
Deadline: Rolling
The Economic Development Administration (EDA) is seeking applications from rural and urban areas that support construction, non-construction, technical assistance, and revolving loan fund projects under EDA’s Public Works and EAA programs. These projects should be designed to leverage existing regional assets and support the implementation of economic development strategies that advance new ideas and creative approaches to advance economic prosperity in distressed communities. A portion of the funding will be designated specifically to assist communities and regions that have felt an impact from the decline of the coal industry. See U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross’ recent announcement making $30 million available to assist coal communities in their economic diversification efforts through the 2017 Assistance to Coal Communities (ACC 2017) initiative.

Enhancing Agricultural Opportunities for Military Veterans Competitive Grants Program
Letter of Intent Due: January 11, 2018
Applications Due: February 8, 2018
Up to $1 million grants are available to nonprofit organizations that apply through the USDA Enhancing Agricultural Opportunities for Military Veterans (AgVets) program. The overarching goal of AgVets is to increase the number of military veterans gaining knowledge and skills through comprehensive, hands-on and immersive model farm/ranch programs offered regionally that lead to successful careers in the food and agricultural sector.

Self-Help Homeownership Opportunity Program
Applications Due: January 25, 2018
The Self-Help Homeownership Opportunity Program (SHOP) has $10,000,000 in grant funding to be awarded to national and regional non-profit organizations and consortia to facilitate and encourage innovative homeownership opportunities on a national, geographically diverse basis. Applicants must propose to use a significant amount of SHOP Grant funds in at least two states. SHOP Grant funds must be used for land acquisition, infrastructure improvements, and for reasonable and necessary planning, administration, and management costs (not to exceed 20 percent). The construction or rehabilitation costs of each SHOP unit must be funded with other leveraged public and private funds. SHOP units must be decent, safe, and sanitary non-luxury dwellings that comply with state and local codes, ordinances, and zoning requirements, and with all other SHOP requirements, including but not limited to, the requirements for energy-efficiency, water conservation, and accessibility. SHOP units must be sold to homebuyers at prices below the prevailing market price. Homebuyers must be low-income and must contribute a significant amount of sweat equity towards the development of SHOP units.

Bureau of Reclamation WaterSMART Cooperative Watershed Management Program Funding Opportunity for 2018
Applications Due: January 31, 2018
This funding opportunity for Phase I of the Cooperative Watershed Management Program is seeking proposals for activities to develop a watershed group, complete watershed restoration planning activities, and to design watershed management projects. Up to $100,000 in federal funds may be awarded to an applicant per award, with no more than $50,000 made available in a year for a period of up to two years. States, tribes, local and special districts (e.g., irrigation and water districts), local governmental entities, interstate organizations, and non-profit organizations, including existing watershed groups, within the 17 western states are eligible to apply.

FEMA NOFO: Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program
Applications Due: February 2
The primary goal of the Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) is to meet the firefighting and emergency response needs of fire departments and non-affiliated emergency medical service organizations. Since 2001, AFG has helped firefighters and other first responders obtain equipment, protective gear, emergency vehicles, training, and other resources necessary for protecting the public and emergency personnel from fire and related hazards. If interested in applying for this grant, see the application assistance tools.

HHS Research Grants for Preventing Violence and Violence Related Injury
Applications Due: February 12, 2018
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Injury Prevention and Control (NCIPC) is soliciting investigator-initiated research that will help expand and advance our understanding about what works to prevent violence by rigorously evaluating primary prevention strategies, programs, and policies to address specific gaps in the prevention of teen dating violence, intimate partner violence, sexual violence, and youth violence. This initiative is intended to support the evaluation of primary prevention strategies, programs or policies that target universal or selected high-risk populations (i.e., populations that have one or more risk factors that place them at heightened risk for perpetration of violence). Funds are available to conduct such studies focused on preventing the perpetration of youth violence and/or teen dating/intimate partner/sexual violence.

HUD Office of the Secretary Launches EnVision Center Demonstration
Commitment Letter Due: February 12
The HUD Office of the Secretary recently announced that it will select ten communities to participate in an EnVision Center demonstration. The demonstration is designed to test the effectiveness of collaborative efforts by government, industry, and nonprofit organizations to accelerate the economic mobility of low-income households through EnVision Centers. These centers act as centralized hubs that offer support through their four pillars: economic empowerment; educational advancement; health and wellness; and character and leadership. HUD will provide technical assistance, evaluation and monitoring, online resources, stakeholder offerings, and a network of support from all HUD departments to help communities empower people to leave HUD-assisted housing through self-sufficiency. If you are interested in having your community participate, submit a commitment letter (sample letter here) with the information required by the Federal Register Notice to EnVisionCenterDemonstration@hud.gov.

Transitional Housing Assistance Grants for Victims of Sexual Assault, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence and Stalking
Applications Due: February 16
The U.S. Department of Justice Office on Violence Against Women makes grants to programs that provide 6-24 months of transitional housing with support services for victims who are homeless; in need of transitional housing due to sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, or stalking; or not able access emergency shelter services or other crisis intervention services because they are unavailable or insufficient. Programs need to have a holistic, victim-centered approach to providing transitional housing services that move survivors into permanent housing. Support services offered should help integrate victims into a community. Examples of support services include employment counseling, occupational training, transportation, counseling, child care services, safety planning, case management, and other assistance.

2018 VA Grant and Per Diem Program – Transition in Place NOFA  
Applications Due: February 21, 2018
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) announced the availability of per diem funds for assistance under the Per Diem Only (PDO) component of the VA’s Homeless Providers Grant and Per Diem (GPD) Program. VA encourages reapplication for those applicants who seek to continue providing “Transition in Place” (TIP) grants and new applicants that will serve the homeless veteran population through a TIP housing model to facilitate housing stabilization. VA expects to fund approximately 500 beds over a two-year period under this NOFA. Approximately $25 million is available to support an average of 25 beds per night, per project.

Fannie Mae Sustainable Communities Innovation Challenge
Applications Due: February 23
Fannie Mae has launched the Sustainable Communities Innovation Challenge to generate innovative ideas to addressing America’s affordable housing crisis and further support their mission to create housing opportunities that are safe, sustainable, and affordable. They plan to invest $10 million over two years to support innovative ideas through partnerships and funding for research, planning, idea development, and marketing. Now through February 23rd, they are seeking proposals that focus on the intersection of affordable housing and economic opportunity.

USDA Conservation Innovation Grants
Applications Due: February 26
Conservation Innovation Grants (CIG) are competitive grants that drive public and private sector innovation in resource conservation. Authorized by the 2002 Farm Bill, CIG uses Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) funds to award competitive grants to non-federal governmental or nongovernmental organizations, American Indian Tribes, or individuals. CIG projects inspire creative problem-solving that boosts production on farms, ranches, and private forests – ultimately, improving water quality, soil health, and wildlife habitats. Projects may be watershed-based, regional, multi-state, or nationwide in scope.

2018 Veterans Affairs Grants and Per Diem Program – Per Diem Only NOFA
Applications Due: February 28, 2018
VA is announcing the availability of per diem funds to eligible entities to provide transitional housing beds under VA’s Homeless Providers Grant and Per Diem Program models. VA expects to fund 1,500 beds with this NOFA for applicants who will use one or a combination of the following housing models: Bridge Housing, Low Demand, Hospital-to-Housing, Clinical Treatment, and Service-Intensive Transitional Housing and Service Centers. This NOFA announces the availability of per diem funding to provide a minimum of five transitional housing beds. No more than 40 beds per model, per medical center, per each applicant’s Employer Identification Number (EIN) will be allowed under this NOFA.

Transitional Living Program and Maternity Group Homes
Applications Due: March 11, 2018
The Administration for Children and Families has announced the availability of funds under the Transitional Living Program (TLP) and Maternity Group Home (MGH) Program. The purpose of the TLP and MGH grant programs are to implement, enhance, and/or support effective strategies for successful transition to sustainable living for runaway and homeless youth ages 16 to under 22 and/or pregnant and parenting youth ages 16 to under 22 and their dependent children. Both projects must provide safe, stable, and appropriate shelter for 18 months. Under extenuating circumstances, shelter can be extended to 21 months and can provide comprehensive services that supports the transition of homeless youth to self-sufficiency and stable, independent living. Through the provision of shelter and an array of comprehensive services, TLP youth will realize improvements in four core outcome areas: safe and stable housing; education/employment; permanent connections; and social and emotional well-being. Grants awarded under this announcement will have a start date of May 1, 2018 and the project period will be 41 months. The total 41-month project period should not exceed $641,660.

Street Outreach Program Grant
Applications Due: March 11, 2018
The Administration for Children and Families has announced the availability of funds under the Street Outreach Program (SOP). SOP works to increase young peoples’ personal safety, social and emotional well-being, self-sufficiency, and to help them build permanent connections with families, communities, schools, and other positive social networks. These services, which are provided in areas where street youth congregate, are designed to assist such youth in making healthy choices and to provide them access to shelter and services, including outreach, gateway services, screening and assessment, harm reduction, access to emergency shelter, crisis stabilization, drop-in centers, and linkages/referrals to services. The award process for the FY2018 SOP allows for annual awards over a three-year project period as funds are available.

EPA Environmental Education Grants
Applications Due: March 15
Under the Environmental Education Grants Program, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) seeks grant proposals for environmental education projects that promote environmental awareness and stewardship and help provide people with the skills to take responsible actions to protect the environment. This program provides financial support for projects that design, demonstrate, and/or disseminate environmental education practices, methods, or techniques. EPA anticipates awarding three to four grants in each EPA Region, for no less than $50,000 and no more than $100,000 each, for a total of 30-35 grants nationwide.

National Endowment of the Arts’ Challenge America Program
Applications Due: April 12, 2018
The Challenge America program offers support primarily to small and mid-sized organizations for projects that extend the reach of the arts to underserved populations – those whose opportunities to experience the arts are limited by geography, ethnicity, economics, or disability. Age alone (e.g., youth, seniors) does not qualify a group as underserved; at least one of the underserved characteristics noted above also must be present. Please provide details about the underserved audience you select in your application. Grants are available for professional arts programming and for projects that emphasize the potential of the arts in community development.

USDA: Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI)
Applications Due: September 8, 2018
The AFRI Foundational Program is offered to support grants in the six AFRI priority areas to continue building a foundation of knowledge critical for solving current and future societal challenges. The six priority areas are: Plant Health and Production and Plant Products; Animal Health and Production and Animal Products; Food Safety, Nutrition, and Health; Bioenergy, Natural Resources, and Environment; Agriculture Systems and Technology; and Agriculture Economics and Rural Communities. Single-function Research Projects, multi-function Integrated Projects, and Food and Agricultural Science Enhancement (FASE) Grants are expected to address one of the Program Area Priorities (see Foundational Program RFA for details). Additional details available.

Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, Partners for Fish and Wildlife 2018
Applications Due: September 30
The Great Lakes Restoration Initiative targets the most significant environmental problems in the Great Lakes ecosystem with federal funding and program implementation. One goal is to improve habitat and wildlife protection and restoration. Using appropriations from the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Partners for Fish and Wildlife (PFW) Program anticipates funding wetland (both coastal and interior) and associated upland habitat restoration and enhancement projects for conservation of native Great Lakes fish and wildlife populations. Restoration projects will be completed on privately owned (non-federal/non-state) lands. Emphasis will be placed on, but not limited to, completing projects within the watersheds of Great Lakes Areas of Concern and in coastal zones. Projects must advance their mission, promote biological diversity, and be based upon sound scientific biological principles. Applicants seeking funding under this program should review the program strategic plan and contact the PFW state coordinator PRIOR TO applying for funding.

Webinars

“3I” Series Infrastructure Ideas & Innovations: Asset Inventory
January 22, 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM ET
The Bipartisan Policy Center is launching the BPC Infrastructure Lab and “3I” Series—Infrastructure Ideas and Innovations. This new effort is aimed at providing policymakers with fact-based evidence that can shape strategies for restoring America’s infrastructure. State and local governments across the country are struggling just to repair and maintain their infrastructure systems, let alone expand or upgrade these systems with the latest and greatest technologies. As such, the lab’s first event presents leading public-sector efforts to embed asset management concepts into municipal government practices. In the spotlight: The District of Columbia’s comprehensive asset inventory, which includes 96 percent of all assets owned, a tally of accrued deferred maintenance, and an action plan to improve the District’s infrastructure. NARC member Grace Gallucci, Executive Director of the Northeast Ohio Areawide Coordinating Agency, is participating on the panel. The event will be webcast.

Electric Vehicle Corridor Planning in the Western U.S.
January 22, 2:00 – 3:30 PM ET
City and state governments across the country are working at a rapid pace to expand the number of EV charging points. In the Western U.S., coalitions of public agencies are working across state boundaries to create new “EV corridors” that link entire regions of the country. What are the barriers to EV corridor planning? How can public agencies build effective coalitions? What are the keys to successful EV corridors? Join this webinar which features leaders of Western State EV corridors to learn more.

Utility of the Future: Achieving and Maintaining Economic Health for the Community
January 23, 1:00-2:30 PM ET
As part of the webinar series, Enabling the Water Resources Utility of the Future, this webinar will focus on Achieving and Maintaining Economic Health for the Community. Leading clean water utilities will discuss innovative assistance programs to support low-income ratepayers and small water systems serving surrounding communities, enhancing the overall economic and social well-being of the entire area.

#CommunityFood: It Takes a Network
January 24, 3:30-4:45 PM ET
Across the U.S., non-profit community-based organizations are transforming food systems to create more equitable health, wealth, connection, and capacity within their communities. Some of the most creative and effective approaches to solving food insecurity, health disparities, economic inequity and environmental injustice emerge from this sector. As part of this webinar, the National Good Food Network will launch the Food Systems Leadership Network, a new national Community of Practice dedicated to supporting non-profit community-based organizations working on food systems change. This webinar will introduce the Food Systems Leadership Network, highlight its unique components (mentorship and grant opportunities!), and discuss how the Network will add value to both your organization’s work and your growth as a food systems practitioner.

Performance Based Planning and Programming Webinar
January 25, 1:00 – 3:30 PM ET
FHWA and FTA speakers will provide an overview of the Performance Based Planning and Programming Requirements, along with implementation timelines. Peer Presenters will share how they are coordinating and collaborating with key partners such as state DOTs, MPOs, and transit operators on Performance Based Planning and Programming. The goal of the webinar is to share the latest information and best practices to ensure consistency nationwide when implementing these requirements.

FHWA-FRA Joint Webinar: Section 130 program
January 25, 1:00 – 2:30 PM ET
The FHWA-FRA Joint Webinar Series discusses a variety of highway-rail grade crossing issues, and tools and strategies to enhance safety. This webinar’s focus is on the Section 130 Program, and includes an overview of Section 130 Program requirements and presentations from Montana and North Carolina’s Section 130 Programs.

National Stormwater Calculator for Managing Runoff Using GI: Cost Module and Mobile Web App
January 31, 2018, 2:00-3:00 PM ET
EPA developed the National Stormwater Calculator to help support local, state, and national stormwater management objectives and regulatory efforts to reduce runoff through infiltration and retention using green infrastructure (GI) practices as low-impact development controls. It is designed to be used by anyone interested in reducing runoff from a property, including site developers, landscape architects, urban planners, and homeowners. It can be used for any location within the U.S., including Puerto Rico. This webinar will provide potential and example applications, and will present the new cost module and mobile web application version that can be used on mobile devices.

Decision Support Tools
January 31, 2:00 – 3:00 PM ET
This webinar will review how two different agencies use decision support tools to support TAM efforts. The speakers will highlight using the TAM small provider template and developing customized decision support tools, among other topics. This webinar is part of a larger webinar series FTA is hosting in 2017-2018 to address important topics relating to TAM. TAM is an essential practice for providing safer, more reliable transit service nationwide while helping lower operating costs.

Decision Support for Transportation Asset Management
January 31, 2:00 – 3:00 PM ET
FTA will host a webinar to review how two agencies use decision support tools to support Transportation Asset Management (TAM) efforts. The webinar will feature presentations from Debbie Swickard (grants manager, Stark Area Regional Transit Authority (SARTA)) and Daniel Holdsworth (budget analyst, Capital District Transit Authority (CDTA)) and will highlight, among other topics, using the TAM small provider tool and developing agency-specific decision support tools.

Resilient Counties: Engaging Your Local Utilities in Disaster Planning and Response
February 6, 2:00-3:00 PM ET
Utilities are vital to the day-to-day life of the average American—whether electric, gas, wastewater, or drinking water. When a utility’s service is interrupted, it can pose life threatening challenges to residents. A lack of electricity to power home medical equipment. Untreated water. These issues are heightened in disaster situations. Join NACo for an interactive webinar on engaging local utilities to improve resiliency in a disaster situation.

Considering Traffic-Related Air Pollution in Bicycle Route Planning
February 7, 1:00 – 2:00 PM ET
Local, regional, and state agencies across the nation are making efforts to increase bicycle infrastructure. The typical planning process for locating new bicycle infrastructure considers a multitude of factors, such as available right-of-way, vehicular traffic volumes, safety concerns, among others. However, exposure to traffic-related air pollution is rarely considered but should be. Bicyclists are directly exposed to vehicular exhaust, which has been proven to contribute to a wide range of health problems such as lung and heart diseases. New research from the University of California, Riverside, provides insight on how the inclusion of traffic-related air pollution can change the outcome of bicycle route planning. Join this upcoming webinar to learn more about findings from this research and implications for bicycle route planning as well as future directions for this work.

County Roles and Opportunities in Opioid Treatment for Justice-Involved Individuals
February 8, 2:00-3:15 PM ET
Join NACo for a three-part webinar series that will focus on key areas of local criminal justice systems and offer strategies to address these issues, make their justice systems work more effectively and efficiently, and ultimately lead to safer and healthier communities. Counties face many challenges in trying to treat opioid misuse and addiction in justice-involved individuals. This webinar will explore strategies to address this issue, including community-based treatment, treatment within the justice system and reentry planning.

Workshops/Events

Leading Economically Competitive and Resilient Communities Training Program
See full list of locations and dates
The Delta Regional Authority presents a series of intensive two-day courses focused on economic development and disaster resiliency strategies to enhance the effectiveness of local elected officials, economic development practitioners, and other community leaders in the Delta region. The workshops are held in partnership with the International Economic Development Council (IEDC) and the U.S. Department of Commerce Economic Development Administration (EDA).

Each workshop will consist of a two-day training that covers one of the following courses – Module A: Basic Economic Development Strategies, Module B: Economic Resilience and Disaster Recovery, or Module C: Advanced Economic Development Strategies. The courses require no prerequisites, and participants are encouraged to attend any of the training workshops offered.

New NHI Course: The Role of Data in Transportation Performance Management
Signup to Host this Course
The Role of Data in Transportation Performance Management is a two-day instructor-led training course offered by the National Highway Institute (NHI). Its goal is to enable participants to manage, analyze, integrate, and use data from diverse sources to support an effective agency TPM function.

The course will begin with an overview of data management. It then details each part of the data supply chain–covering common needs, considerations, and challenges along the way. During the second day, the sessions will cover issues related to data assessment and data improvement planning. The course material is synthesized at the end of the course, through the creation of a data management and improvement plan. This training can provide a useful starting point for agencies that wish to undertake improvements at all stages of the data life cycle.

Steps to Effective Target Setting for TPM
A new FHWA course, Steps to Effective Target Setting for TPM, is now available through the National Highway Institute (NHI). This two-day instructor-led course explains the elements of target setting and how to establish reasonable, attainable performance targets. Upon completion, participants will be able to explain the key steps and factors in target setting; set targets; identify coordination needs; identify key stakeholder roles; and identify effective communication strategies. The primary audience comprises program managers, planners, and engineers responsible for target setting and transportation plans at state DOTs, MPOs, regional transit agencies, and FHWA and FTA employees who provide oversight and assistance for target setting.

Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) Procurement
This National Highway Institute FHWA course will provide an overview of strategies for successfully deploying ITS projects that build on systems engineering principles and practices and will present an approach to defining ITS projects and desired outcomes. The focus of this course is on the procurement stage of the overall acquisition process. For this course, the procurement stage spans from identifying what you need to developing a procurement that helps you get what you need through contractor selection. This course will provide you with tools to develop the key aspects of a request for quote (RFQ), request for proposal (RFP), invitation for bid (IFB), or goods contract advertisement to ensure a successful procurement.

Conferences

Publications

TRB Straight to Recording for All: Breaking Down Barriers – Funding and Finance Issues and Innovations in Public Transportation
Watch TRB recorded presentations that examine new approaches to funding and financing transit projects, including issues confronting sponsors of public transportation projects and programs and how transit agencies have addressed these issues. Topics include the use of passenger revenue-based Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (TIFIA) loans for transit capital projects, a review of how transit project sponsors are partnering with the private sector, and case studies of the funding and finance tools project sponsors are using.

Five Years After Great Recession American Children Still Suffer
As of 2013, 14.7 million children were in poverty, a significant increase from the 12.8 million children in poverty before the recession began. This paper from First Focus examines four factors – health, food security, housing stability, and maltreatment – and reviews the relationship of each to the well-being of children during the Great Recession, analyzing research and data from before, during, and after the Great Recession.

U.S. Foreign Born Population Projected to Reach 18.8% by 2060
According to new Census Bureau population projections reported by Pew Trusts Research, the U.S. foreign born population will set a new record for their share of the total population.

AARP Livability Index
AARP will release a new web-based Livability Index, based on nationally available data, mapping technology, and public policies to assess the livability of communities. The Index will help users better understand their communities and make decisions. Sign up to receive the AARP Livable Communities e-Newsletter.

Building Healthy Places Toolkit
The Urban Land Institute (ULI) released Building Healthy Places Toolkit: Strategies for Enhancing Health in the Built Environment to provide guidance on creating healthy, vibrant communities. The toolkit builds on previous ULI efforts, including the Building Healthy Places Initiative and Healthy Corridors Project.

Local Government Employment Buoys Stagnant Public Sector
The National League of Cities highlights increased local government employment helping prop up public sector jobs in CitiesSpeak. The blog notes that total public sector employment was up 7,000 jobs in February, with local government representing 4,000 of those jobs. Despite these improvements, local government employment remains 512,000 jobs below its July 2008 post-recession peak.

Affordable Housing for Who?
The National Low Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC) released Housing Spotlight: Affordable Housing is Nowhere to be Found for Millions, focusing on the gap between the number of low income renters and the number of units available in their price range. NLIHC finds that there is a national shortage of 7.1 million affordable rental units available to rental households with incomes at or below 30 percent of area median income (AMI)

APA Issues Post-Disaster Recovery Manual
Over the past four years, the American Planning Association (APA) Hazards Planning Center worked under an agreement with FEMA to develop Planning for Post-Disaster Recovery: Next Generation (PAS 576). This updated manual offers a no-nonsense explanation of the benefits and limitations of planning for unpredictable events.

Affordable Rental Housing Research Study
A study of affordable rental housing conducted by the New York University Furman Center analyzes rental housing affordability trends in the central cities of the 11 largest metropolitan areas in the U.S. This study looks into recent trends in rent levels, rent burdens, affordable units, and the gap between the number of low-income households in need of affordable housing and the number of existing affordable units. Data analysis is based on data from the U.S. Census Bureau, including data from the American Community Survey from 2006 through 2013, and uses geographic information from the Missouri Census Data Center.

Housing and Neighborhood Resources
How Housing Matters provides a new resource on housing and neighborhood issues. Funded by the MacArthur Foundation, the Urban Land Institute will host research and practical information on how housing can contribute to better educational opportunities and outcomes for children; stronger economic foundations for families and communities; and healthier people and neighborhoods.

Smart Gentrification
Jonathan Grabinsky and Stuart M. Butler from the Brookings Institution discuss “smart” gentrification and its role in fighting poverty. Between 1970 and 2010 the number of high-poverty neighborhoods in the U.S. tripled, while only 10 percent managed to escape poverty. While displacement is a possible outcome for existing low-income residents, “smart” gentrification can result in mixed-income communities rather than exclusive high-income communities. Cities like Washington, DC are attempting to regulate gentrification in order to preserve affordability for existing residents. Click HERE for part one, and HERE for part two of this Brookings discussion.

Income Segregation
The segregation of upper and lower income households has risen in 27 of the nation’s 30 largest metros, according to a 2012 report by the Pew Research Center. The report found that economic segregation is positively associated with population size and density, the share of minority residents, and wage inequality. According to the report, cities and neighborhoods are becoming more homogenous and segregated by income, education, and occupation. Click HERE to read more.

Getting to Green: Paying for Green Infrastructure, Finance Options, and Resources for Local Decision-Makers: This report summarizes various funding sources that can be used to support stormwater management programs or finance individual projects. Click HERE for the report.

Coastal Stormwater Management through Green Infrastructure: This handbook is designed to assist coastal municipalities within the Massachusetts Bay and Cape Cod Bay areas to incorporate green infrastructure into their stormwater management planning, and can be useful for other states.Click HERE for the handbook.

CDC Healthy Community Toolkit: Centers for Disaster Control and Prevention (CDC) has developed a Healthy Community Design Checklist Toolkit to highlight the connection between community design and health. Click HERE for tools and resources.

EPA Report: Connectivity of Streams and Wetlands to Downstream Waters: EPA’s Office of Research and Development released its final report, Connectivity of Streams and Wetlands to Downstream Waters. The report summarizes current scientific understanding about the connectivity of streams and wetlands to downstream waters. EPA conducted a review of more than 1,200 peer-reviewed and published documents on scientific evidence regarding the effects that streams, non-tidal wetlands, and open-waters have on larger downstream waters such as rivers, lakes, estuaries, and oceans. The report concludes that streams, wetlands, and other open-waters influence the integrity of downstream waters through both structural and functional connections. This report is meant to inform policy and regulatory decisions, including the Clean Water Rule (Waters of the U.S.) being developed jointly by EPA and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Click HERE for the report.

GAO Publishes Report on Surface Transportation Performance Measures in MAP-21: On Friday, the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) published the results of a review on the implementation of the MAP-21 surface transportation performance measures. Click HERE for the final report, entitled Surface Transportation: DOT Is Progressing toward a Performance-Based Approach, but States and Grantees Report Potential Implementation Challenges.

The Innovative MPO: A new report from Transportation for America highlights MPO successes from around the country. This new handbook is designed to give MPO staff, policymakers, technical and advisory committees innovative ways to achieve goals on behalf of their communities. Click HERE for the full report.

DHS 2014 National Emergency Communications Plan: The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) released its first updated National Emergency Communications Plan (NECP) since the original in 2008. The NECP is the Nation’s over-arching strategic plan for enhancing emergency communications capabilities and interoperability nationwide, and this update addresses the increasingly complex communications landscape that the public safety community uses. The plan provides a roadmap for improving emergency communications for traditional emergency responder disciplines such as law enforcement, fire, and emergency medical services, while recognizing the importance of engaging non-traditional disciplines including public health, public works, and transportation agencies. The 2014 NECP focuses on three priorities: (1) Maintaining and improving emergency responders’ current Land Mobile Radio systems; (2) Ensuring emergency responders and government officials plan and prepare for the adoption, migration, and use of broadband technologies, including the Nationwide Public Safety Broadband Network; and (3) Enhancing coordination among stakeholders. Click HERE to view the 2014 NECP and related documents.

NLC Report on Open Data: The capture and analysis of data is transforming the 21st Century. As society becomes more data driven, data has the ability to drive the bottom line for private companies and help the public sector to define where and how services can best be delivered. In City Open Data Policies: Learning by Doing, the National League of Cities (NLC) identifies how cities can take advantage of the opportunities presented by open data initiatives. Click HERE to read a summary of their recommendations and to download the report.

New CEs Available: On October 6, FTA published a joint final rule with FHWA that adds a number of new categorical exclusions (CEs) for FHWA and FTA pursuant to Section 1318 of MAP-21. The CEs were developed based on responses to a stakeholder survey conducted in September 2012 and published in a notice of proposed rulemaking in September 2013 for public review and comment. The new CEs became effective November 5th. Click HERE for access to the new Guidance for Implementation of FTA’s Categorical Exclusions webinar recording.

Ranking Metropolitan Areas by Transit Accessibility: The University of Minnesota has released a report, Access Across America, ranking major metropolitan areas by the accessibility to jobs by transit. Based on 46 of the largest metropolitan areas in the U.S., researchers collected detailed transit route and schedule information for each city followed by calculating the number of jobs a resident can reach by transit and walking between the hours of 7 AM and 9 AM. Cities like Washington, Philadelphia, Seattle, and Denver performed significantly better in the Access Across America transit report than the University’s 2013 Automobile Accessibility report. This report supports the University’s ongoing efforts to develop tools for assessing transportation performance. Click HERE for more information.

Labor Trafficking in America: A new report from the Urban Institute and Northeastern University, Hidden in Plain Sight: Labor Trafficking in America, documents labor trafficking abuses occurring in the major U.S. industries of agriculture, domestic work, hotels, restaurants, and construction. This study chronicles the experiences of labor trafficking victims from the point of recruitment for work, forced labor victimization, attempts to escape and get help, and efforts to seek justice through civil or criminal cases. Interview and case file data detail the ubiquity of trafficking, which occurs both in plain sight and behind lock and key.Detailed recommendations propose next steps for policy and practice. Click HERE for the report.

National Wildlife Federation (NWF) Report on Protecting Communities and Ecosystems During Extreme Weather: The National Wildlife Federation along with the Allied World Assurance Company and Earth Economics have developed a report that focuses on natural defenses from hurricanes and floods in the coastal waters of the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, the Gulf of Mexico, and the nation’s extensive network of rivers and streams. Click HERE for the report.

Ranking Metropolitan Areas by Transit Accessibility: The University of Minnesota has released a report, Access Across America, ranking major metropolitan areas by the accessibility to jobs by transit. Based on 46 of the largest metropolitan areas in the U.S., the researchers collected detailed transit route and schedule information for each city followed by calculating the number of jobs a resident can reach by transit and walking between the hours of 7 AM and 9 AM. Cities like Washington, Philadelphia, Seattle, and Denver performed significantly better in the Access Across America transit report than the University’s 2013 Automobile Accessibility report. This report supports the University’s ongoing efforts to develop tools for assessing transportation performance. Click HERE for more information.

Federal Investment in Transportation Infrastructure Creates American Jobs: Even though our decaying infrastructure is creating a significant drag on the economy, both Congress and the Administration continue to delay making long-term decisions about investing in our infrastructure. The Center on Globalization, Governance, and Competitiveness at Duke University developed a detailed report evaluating the cost of inaction from an international competitiveness and job creation perspective. Some findings of the report include: that the U.S. is less competitive than 15 of our major trading partners because of our old and broken transportation infrastructure; underinvestment costs the U.S. over 900,000 jobs – 97,000 are American manufacturing jobs; and that maximizing American-made materials when rebuilding infrastructure has the potential to create even more jobs. Click HERE for the full report.

Going Local: Connecting the National Labs to their Regions to Maximize Innovation and Growth
The Metropolitan Policy Program at Brookings has released a report on enhancing the national labs’ impact on regional economies and innovation. The report argues that the frequently rule-bound, “behind the fence” operating style of the Department of Energy (DOE) lab system has likely limited these invaluable institutions’ contributions both to local innovation and growth. Senior Fellow and Policy Director Mark Muro stated that the report argues that the hubs need to engage more with local industry clusters in order to deliver fully on their national mission and it recommends a number of ways to allow for that. Click HERE to read the report and to access additional information.

Small Legacy Cities, Equity, and a Changing Economy
Small Legacy Cities, Equity, and a Changing Economy is a report completed by a group of graduate students from the University of Pennsylvania’s Department of City and Regional Planning in spring 2014. With the Federal Reserve’s Department of Community Development Studies and Education acting as client, the students were tasked with evaluating the extent to which economic revitalization strategies in Wilmington, DE, Lancaster, PA, and Bethlehem, PA had led to equitable outcomes for low- and moderate-income residents. The report also presents city-specific recommendations and proposes a framework for integrating equity as a strategic priority into local economic development efforts. Click HERE to read the report.

Partnership for Sustainable Communities: Five Years of Learning from Communities and Coordinating Federal Investments
EPA released a report that summarizes its collaborative efforts with the U.S. DOT and HUD. These efforts have been aimed at improving the livability of communities, in part through improving access to public transportation and safe walkways. Click HERE to read the report.

AASHTO: Guide for Geometric Design of Transit Facilities on Highways and Streets, 1st Edition
This guide provides a comprehensive reference of current practice in the geometric design of transit facilities on streets and highways, including local buses, express buses, and bus rapid transit operating in mixed traffic, bus lanes, and high-occupancy vehicle lanes, as well as bus-only roads within street and freeway environments. It also covers streetcars and LRT running in mixed traffic and transit lanes, and within medians along arterial roadways. These guidelines are based on a review of relevant AASHTO, TRB, and ITE documents, as well as design reports provided by various transit agencies. They are designed for use by public agencies, practitioners, and developers in need of basic information about planning, locating, sizing, designing, and implementing transit facilities along roadways. Click HERE to purchase the guide.

Role of Regional Planning Organizations in Transportation Planning Across Boundaries
The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) Office of Planning, in partnership with the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) Volpe National Transportation Systems Center, prepared this white paper. This research examines how RPOs and rural interests are integral partners in transportation planning efforts for megaregions and explores methods for their participation. Click HERE to read the report.

A Guide to Regional Transportation Planning for Disasters, Emergencies, and Significant Events
The Transportation Research Board’s (TRB) National Cooperative Highway Research ProgramReport 777: A Guide to Regional Transportation Planning for Disasters, Emergencies, and Significant Events uses foundational planning principles, case studies, tips, and tools to explain implementation of transportation planning for possible multijurisdictional disasters, emergencies, and other major events. In addition to the guide, there is a research report and PowerPoint presentation describing the project. Click HERE to access the publication.

TRB’s Transportation Research Record Developing Countries 2013
This publication consists of 16 papers that explore travel time and space mean speed of nonmotorized vehicles; a review of India’s national urban investment program; assessment of public–private partnership in traveler information provision; low-mass urban microcars; transition Beijing, China to a transit city; and lessons of bus rapid transit from nine cities in China. Click HERE for additional information and to read the journal.

U.S. DOT Online Resource to Learn about ITS
The Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) ePrimer provides transportation professionals with fundamental concepts and practices related to ITS technologies. This online resource can help practicing professionals better understand how ITS is integrated into the planning, design, deployment, and operations of surface transportation systems. The ITS ePrimer is both a stand-alone reference document for the practitioner as well as a text for education and training programs. Click HERE to access the web-based textbook.

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