KTRPO Feasibility Study

The Kerr-Tar Rural Planning Organization is looking for a NCDOT-prequalified consultant to develop a Feasibility Study to conduct a corridor study to determine the feasibility of constructing the Granville County portion of the East Coast Greenway from the City of Oxford to the Town of Butner. The Request of Letters of Interest [RFLOI] can be found here. The deadline to receive RFLOI’s is 5:00 pm on September 30, 2021.

Kerr-Tar RPO Feasibility Study 

Public Comment Period Begins for Draft Phase 2 Volkswagen Mitigation Plan

The N.C. Department of Environmental Quality’s Division of Air Quality invites public comment on the state’s plan to invest $67 million in Volkswagen Settlement funds.  The Draft Phase 2 Mitigation plan focuses on efforts to reduce pollution impacts while incentivizing zero emission vehicles and increasing outreach to under-resourced communities.

The funds represent North Carolina’s share of the $2.9 billion federal settlement with Volkswagen due to its misrepresentation of diesel emission standards in certain vehicles. Governor Roy Cooper designated the Division of Air Quality as the lead agency to manage the project in November 2017. Wilmington Trust officially designed North Carolina as a State Beneficiary in January 2018.

In Phase 1 of the program, North Carolina awarded nearly $27 million to replace 111 school buses and 16 transit buses and to install 33 zero emission vehicle (ZEV) fast charging stations and 78 Level 2 charging stations across the state.

The Division of Air Quality will also hold a series of in-person public information sessions for counties eligible in the Historically Under-Resourced Counties Outreach Program. Additional meeting dates, locations and times will be posted on the DEQ Volkswagen Program webpage.

Comments may be submitted online via Microsoft Forms at https://bit.ly/3jMMu3i or emailed to daq_NCVWGrants@ncdenr.gov. Voicemail comments will also be accepted at 919-707-8429.

All comments will be accepted until September 7, 2021 at 5 p.m.

Additional information regarding Phase 2 can be found on https://deq.nc.gov/vw-settlement.

EDA STEM Talent Challenge

The US Economic Development Administration (EDA) launced the STEM Talent Challenge to support programs to train science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) talent and fuel regional innovation economies across the nation.  The $2 million STEM Talent Challenge will provide funding for work-and-learn programs to increase America’s STEM-capable workforce in emerging and transformative sectors such as space commerce, aeronautics, digital manufacturing, biotechnology, advanced manufacturing, and cybersecurity.

Competition applicants may request up to $250,000 for implementation of a 24-month workforce program that complements their region’s innovation economy.  The deadline to apply is October 12, 2021.  Click HERE for a helpful one-pager.

Click HERE for the Notice of Funding Opportunity.  

For more information, visit www.eda.gov/OIE/STEM.

A webinar will be scheduled to learn more about the application process.  For the latest updates, check their website and stay tuned for email updates.

2021 NADO Photography Contest

The 2021 NADO Photo Contest is open now through September 10.  This contest is an opportunity for our member organizations to tell the story of their regions through images that capture the people and places that make their communities great places to live, work, and play.  Photos submitted will be judged in five categories:

  • Building Vibrant Places
  • Strengthening the Built & Natural Environments
  • Investing in Our Regional Economy
  • Sustaining Our Communities
  • COVID-19 Response & Recovery

Prizes will be given to winning photos in these categories, as well as to a “People’s Choice” winner that will be selected by votes through the NADO Facebook page.

Looking for inspiration?  Click HERE to see last year’s winners and runners-up.  Please direct any questions to NADO Research Foundation Associate Director Brett Schwartz at bschwartz@nado.org.

For more information on this year’s contest and entry form, click HERE.