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Stronger Economies Together (SET) applications now being accepted until May 7

Virginia was selected as a Stronger Economies Together (SET) Phase V state for 2015.  This designation creates an opportunity for two selected rural Virginia regions to receive economic development coaching and technical assistance. SET is a high-quality regional economic improvement program that strives to strengthen the capacity of communities and counties in rural America by developing and implementing economic advancement blueprints for the multicounty regions.

Launched in 2010 by U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development in collaboration with the nation's Regional Rural Development Centers and their land-grant university partners, this initiative is now in place in more than 50 regions in 28 states. It strategically builds on the current and emerging economic strengths of the regions.

In 2012, Virginia entered SET Phase III and worked with the Northern Neck and the Virginia Growth Alliance regions. Virginia regions are invited to apply to the SET project.  Two multi-county regions in rural Virginia will be selected to participate in the 2015 initiative. A region is eligible if it:

  • encompasses three or more contiguous counties in Virginia or in conjunction with counties in neighboring state
  • has a population and/or geographic area that is 51 percent rural in nature or 75 percent of the land area must be considered rural based on census data or other sufficient data or documentation

The regions selected will receive economic development coaching and technical assistance for at least 18 months, including:

  • Valuable training on the core building blocks for developing and launching a regional economic development plan.
  • In-depth economic data that delineates the critical drivers of the region's economy.
  • Tools that uncover local assets and resources that can be tapped to advance the region's economic strategies and actions.

All regions that meet the eligibility requirement are invited to submit an application by visitinghttp://tinyurl.com/SET-Virginia.

Completed applications must be submitted electronically to Martha Walker at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it by Thursday, May 7, 2015, will be reviewed by a state steering committee, and the two selected regions will be announced by June 30, 2015.

 

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Virginia Telecommunication Planning Initiative (VATPI) Letter of Interest

The Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) is currently accepting letters of interest for the Virginia Telecommunication Planning Initiative (VATPI). The primary objective of the VATPI is to ensure community sustainability and competitiveness in the global marketplace via comprehensive planning for broadband deployment.  VATPI is a comprehensive telecommunications planning effort that will allow communities to identify and develop elements necessary to develop a successful community broadband network. Community telecommunications plans include, at the least:

  •  Assessment of current broadband availability and usage;
  • Address demand aggregation and future use;
  • Address the relationship to regional planning and telecommunications networks;
  • Address community development applications; and
  • Design.

Funding

Up to $75,000 in funds will be awarded for communities to develop a comprehensive telecommunication plan.  DHCD anticipates awarding up to eight grants awards.

Selection Process

Grantees will be selected through a two-phased selection process for the VATPI program.  They include Phase I-Letter of Interest (LOI) and Phase II-Detailed Response. The letter of interest must be submitted on or before Friday, May 22, 2015 to Tamarah Holmes, Ph.D, at 600 East Main Street, Suite 300, Richmond, Virginia 23219. Guidelines for the Letter of Interest can be found here.

For additional information, contact Tamarah Holmes at (804) 371-7056 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

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NOTICE OF PUBLIC HEARING WEATHERIZATION ASSISTANCE PROGRAM 2015 STATE PLAN

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Pursuant to Title 10, Code of Federal Regulations, Section 440.14(a), the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) will conduct a public hearing for the purpose of receiving comments on the draft Weatherization Assistance Program State Plan for the 2015 Program Year.

The public hearing will be held on Monday April 20, 2015 at 10 a.m. at the Main Street Centre, 600 East Main Street, Richmond VA 23219, 12th floor, South Conference Room. The Weatherization Assistance Program is funded by the U.S. Department of Energy and is administered in the Commonwealth of Virginia by DHCD. The program’s purposes are to increase the energy efficiency of dwellings owned or occupied by low-income persons, reduce total residential energy expenditures and improve health and safety, especially of persons who are particularly vulnerable such as the elderly, handicapped and children.

Interested parties are invited to provide comment regarding the Weatherization Assistance Program. If you cannot attend the public hearing, you may state your interest or concerns through written testimony mailed to Nancy Palmer, Weatherization Assistance Program, DHCD, 600 E. Main Street, Ste 300, Richmond VA 23219. Copies of the draft 2015 Weatherization Assistance Program State Plan will be available for inspection at the hearing location or in advance by contacting Nancy Palmer at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

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2015 Competitive Pre-Applications now available in CAMS

Open to eligible applicants through Dec. 3

Click here