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 hold a series public information sessions to explain the draft plan. Members of the public and entities interested in receiving funds for eligible projects are encouraged to register and attend:

  • 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. Wednesday, July 14: Western NC Region
  • 2 p.m. – 4 p.m. Wednesday, July 14: Centralina/Triad Region
  • 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. Wednesday, July 21: Triangle Region
  • 2 p.m. – 4 p.m. Wednesday, July 21: Coastal NC Region

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 or emailed to 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


We’re Hiring! RPO Coordinator

The Kerr-Tar Council of Governments is seeking a Regional Transportation Planner.  This position will coordinate the transportation planning processes of the Kerr-Tar Rural Planning Organizatio (RPO) for the following five counties:  Franklin, Granville, Person, Vance, and Warren; serve as staff to the RPO’s Rural Technical Coordinating Committee (TCC) and to the RPO’s Rural Transportation Advisory Committee (TAC).  For more details and a full job description, click HERE.

American Rescue Plan Technical Sessions

The Governor’s Task Force on Racial Equity in Criminal Justice is sponsoring technical assistance sessions to provide assistance on three funding solutions that address both criminal justice reform and COVID-19 related mitigation and behavioral health needs.  These will be led by Justice Earls and Attorney General Stein.

Session 1:  Tuesday, July 13, 12:00 pm
Respond more appropriately to calls for emergency service, specifically concerning mental illness, autism, intellectual disabilities, substance abuse, homelessness, and other non-emergency situations.
Register HERE

Session 2:  Thursday, July 15, 12:00 pm
Fund violence prevention programs.
Register HERE

Session 3:  Tuesday, July 20, 12:00 pm
Establish and expand access to pre-arrest and post-arrest diversion programs (ex. LEAD).
Register HERE

For more information, click HERE.

June 2021 RPO Meeting

The June 24, 2021 meeting of the Kerr-Tar Rural Transportation Planning Organization will be held in person at the Kerr-Tar Regional Council of Governments’ office at 1724 Graham Avenue, Henderson, NC from 3:00-5:00 pm. The public will be allowed to physically attend this meeting; however, the public is also welcome to view or listen to the meeting via Zoom. Access information is available on the meeting agenda.

Members of the public who would like to make public comments during the Public Comments section of the meeting MUST register by emailing before noon on Thursday, June 24, 2021. You must include your name, the phone number you will be calling from (if applicable), and email address. You will be recognized for comments in the order that you registered. The time limit for each speaker will be five minutes.

Click HERE to view agenda and other meeting materials.

Local Governments and 2020 Census Data: What to Expect, How to Prepare

On May 26 from 1:00-3:00 pm, the NC Office of State Budget and Management is hosting a free, virtual event on the topic of Local Governments and 2020 Census Data: What to Expect, How to Prepare. We know how vital Census data is to our tribal and local governments. And we also know the 2020 Census ushered in numerous policy changes and unexpected challenges. Now that the first Census 2020 data has been released, we want to help local leaders in North Carolina understand what to expect from the coming data releases and what recourse is available to them if they have concerns about their local data.

The event features 3 speakers from the Census Bureau, addressing these issues and more. Feel free to share this information with your network and encourage them to register. To register for the event, click HERE.