ACRPC NOVEMBER NEWSLETTER

Posted on November 4th, 2022 to Uncategorized

The ACRPC Newsletter contains Addison County announcements, events, grants, and training for the upcoming month. Click below to see this newsletter and other resources on our website. Please contact Maddison Shropshire with questions, [email protected]

ACRPC Update

Roles and Responsibilities in Municipal Land Use: function, structure and process of municipal boards and staff.

Date: December 5th at 6:30 p.m.   | Location: A virtual option will be available at this link.

Addison County Regional Planning Commission will be conducting a training session for both new and established members of municipal boards. Although the presentation is geared to planning commission members, the training focuses on the working relationships amongst all local boards and municipal staff.  A summary of Vermont’s history of land use planning legislation, how we got to where we are today, will kick off the conversation. This presentation will be held in Vergennes but is open to folks from all communities interested in how land use decisions are made in their towns. ACRPC encourages people to share their interests and concerns. There will be time for questions and discussion following the presentation. A virtual option will be available.

Events

November Calendar

DateTimeMeeting
November 9th7:00 PMFull Commission Meeting
November 16th6:30 PMTAC Meeting
November 17th7:00 PMACSWMD Meeting
November 23th2:00 PMOtter Creek Basin Water Quality
November 23th6:30 PMACRPC Executive Board Meeting
December 6th 6:30 PMEnergy Committee Meeting

This newsletter is financed through the State of Vermont Dept. of Housing and Community Affairs. Opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect the opinion of the State of Vermont. All programs of the Addison County Regional Planning Commission are ADA accessible.

Announcements

ACRPC to Host Health Equity Training and Grant Funding Workshop!

The ACRPC will be hosting a workshop in early December to discuss the meaning and importance of health equity in our communities, and the funding that is currently available for projects in your town. Space for this event is limited. Please contact Maddison Shropshire, [email protected], to learn more and ensure your town is represented at this event!

Bristol Firehouse Apartments Groundbreaking 

The Town of Bristol welcomes a new mixed-income housing development of 20 one-, two-, and three-bedroom apartments including town-home flats and duplexes. Fifteen units will have rents that are affordable to households earning 50% or 60% of Area Median Income (or less), and the remaining five will be affordable for households earning up to 120% of AMI. Amenities include a community room, on-site laundry, gardens, and easy access to the Bristol Trail Network. The neighborhood is located half a mile from the Town Green and just across the street from the Rec Park and High School. Apartments are projected to begin leasing in September 2023 and the application process will open in Spring of 2023. To be placed on an interest list to receive updates on the process, please contact Carolyn at (802)877-2626 x 109, or via email. Learn more about applying at www.addisontrust.org/apartments.

Help Us Get the Word Out About Free Grab-and-Go Meals this Month!

All Age Well Meals are open to anyone age 60 and over and their spouse of any age. All meal recipients must fully register with Age Well once a year and reservations for meals must be made in advance by calling Michelle Eastman at 802-377-1419. Rides, pickup and delivery of meals may be available. Call Tri-Valley Transit (TVT) at 802-388-2287 to enquire. TVT requests 48-hour notice. Donations accepted at all sites. To learn about upcoming meals and how to register please Click Here. Please also consider printing the information at this link and posting it in popular public locations and tell your friends about this valuable service. Print and share.

Vermont State Housing Conference

This is the only conference that brings together housing professionals from across the state to cover a comprehensive range of topics like housing development, single family financing, affordable housing, housing policy, local planning for housing, homelessness, and other special topics. Throughout this year’s conference, we will frame topics in terms of what each of us in our various roles can do to solve the housing crisis faced by Vermont. Register: here | Date: November 16 

ACORN’s Annual Meeting

Tuesday, November 15, 6:00 PM- 7:30 PM | Minifactory, 16 Main St, Bristol

Hear about ACORN’s brand new Food Hub and what it means for our local food system, the success of the 4th annual Farmacy: Food is Medicine collaboration and see what ACORN has in store for 2023. Celebrate local food with our community! REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED Email [email protected] if you prefer to pay at the door.

Grants & Funding

Community 

Municipal Planning Grants

The State’s flexible Municipal Planning Grants are ready to support projects for long-term recovery, and now is the time to begin thinking about projects. Individual towns may apply for up to $26,400 and joint applications from several municipalities (a consortium) may apply for up to $39,600.  Contact Katie Raycroft Meyer, Community Planner, [email protected] for more information.

Vermont Arts Council Animating Infrastructure Grant

Animating Infrastructure Grants support community projects that integrate art with infrastructure improvements. Through this program, the Council strives to demonstrate the positive impact of art in helping communities to meet goals of livability, walkability, safety, economic vitality, and community vibrancy, and to support the creation of unique infrastructure projects where function and art are one and the same. Access the grant application and learn more on the Vermont Arts Council website | Due: Dec 12, 2022

Vermont Community Development Grants

The Vermont Community Development Program (VCDP) assists communities on a competitive basis by providing financial and technical assistance to identify and address local needs in the areas of housing, economic development, public facilities, public services, handicapped accessibility and modification planning. 

Learn more: Here | Due: Rolling basis

VEDA Short Term Forgivable Loan Program

The VEDA Short Term Forgivable Loan Program provides financial assistance to businesses that continue to experience current and on-going economic harm due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Initially, these loans were only available to certain priority industry sectors and business owners. Starting November 1st, the program will be open to all business sectors & business owners who meet the criteria for eligibility. Learn more: Here

Energy

Electric Vehicle Workplace Charging Station Loan Program

Electric Vehicle Workplace Charging Station loans are available for any for profit or not-for-profit business, municipality, or individual owning or leasing a business property to an otherwise eligible business and installing a new EV Charging station(s). These include individuals, sole proprietors, LLCs, corporations, cooperatives, not-for-profit, and municipalities.

Learn more: Here | Contact Maddison Shropshire: [email protected]

Clean Energy Development Fund Incentives

  1. EDF’s new Woodstove Change-out and Repair Incentives for income eligible households are now available. Incentives up to $10,000 (or 80% of total cost) are available for the change-out of an old stove to a new cord or pellet stove and for needed repairs to hearths and chimneys (up to $6,000 for stoves and $4,000 for repairs).
  2. There is now an incentive adder for low/moderate-income Vermonters installing pellet boilers/furnaces.  The Advanced Wood Heating Systems Adder can add up to $8,000 to CEDF’s existing $3,000 incentive and households can add EVT’s $3,000 incentive to that for up to $15,000 for low-income households to install an automated pellet boiler/furnace and bulk pellet storage.
  3. CEDF’s Coal Change-out program continues to find VT households heating with coal that want to switch to advanced wood heating. The Coal Change-out Adder is up to $7,000 for residential projects and $27,000 for non-residential.

Contact Maddison Shropshire, Energy Planner, [email protected] for more information.

Equity

VCF Equitable and Inclusive Communities grant 

The Vermont Community Foundation is seeking proposals from Vermont villages, towns, and cities that close the opportunity gap by supporting local efforts to foster inclusion and belonging for people of all races and backgrounds. The Foundation offers grants of up to $10,000 to fund projects that generate a greater sense of community and equity education in town.

Learn more: Here | Due: rolling basis until funds are used

Transportation

Vermont Better Roads Grant Program

The Vermont Agency of Transportation (AOT) is pleased to announce the 26th year of funding to support projects on municipal roads that improve water quality and result in maintenance cost savings. The application scoring of the Better Roads Program is intended to be in line with the State’s Clean Water Act (Act 64) and the Municipal Roads General Permit (MRGP). In an effort to prioritize funding for projects that are providing significant water quality improvements, applicants must indicate whether or not the projects that they intend to construct will be in full compliance with the MRGP. 

Learn More and Download the Application: Here  |  Due: December 16, 2022  

Contact: Mike Winslow, Transportation Planner, [email protected]

SFY 2023 Transportation Alternatives Program

VTrans is pleased to announce that we are now accepting grant applications for the SFY 2023 Transportation Alternatives Program.  This year, Transportation Alternatives Program funding is available for all eligible activities as described in the Vermont Transportation Alternatives Fall 2022 Application Guide per the link below.  50% of grant program funds are reserved for environmental mitigation projects relating to stormwater and highways, including eligible salt and sand shed projects.

An informational workshop (via virtual meeting) will be held to convey requirements as well as to collect any questions that arise from the participants. Date: November 16th, 2022, from 10:00am-11:30am |  Join Webinar

To apply for the grant use this TAP Link. Applications are due by e-mail by December 14, 2022. If you have questions or would like more information, please contact:

Scott Robertson, P.E. | Municipal Assistance Bureau – Proj. Mgr.

Vermont Agency of Transportation | 802-793-2395 | [email protected]

Downtown Transportation Fund Grants

The Department of Housing and Community Development is pleased to announce the availability of approximately $3,600,000 in Downtown Transportation Fund Grants (DTF) to support revitalization efforts in Designated Downtowns and eligible Designated Village Centers. See the program application for a full list of eligible municipalities. 

Learn more: Here  |  Due: January 31, 2023 @ 5:00 p.m. 

Contact: Gary Holloway, the Downtown Program Manager at 802-522-2444 

Clean Water Initiative Funding

The Downtown Transportation Fund (DTF) has additional funding from the State of

Vermont’s Clean Water Budget, sourced from the Clean Water Fund. The Clean Water

Fund supports projects that plan for and implement stormwater management practices

that help improve water quality by reducing water pollution, such as phosphorus and

sediment, caused by stormwater runoff and erosion.

Learn more: Here  |  Due: January 31, 2023 @ 5:00 p.m. 

Contact: Gary Holloway, the Downtown Program Manager at 802-522-2444

Clean Water

Clean Water and Healthy Ecosystems RFP

LCBP seeks proposals for projects that would directly support the Clean Water and Healthy Ecosystems goals of Opportunities for Action: An evolving plan for the future of the Lake Champlain Basin through on-the-ground implementation of water quality and habitat improvement, project planning and prioritization, and aquatic invasive species spread prevention measures.

Learn More: Here 

Clean Water Proposals Due: Oct, 12th | Healthy Ecosystems Proposals Due: Nov, 9th

Natural Resources

ARPA Funded Primary Producer Grant Opportunity is now open!

Primary producers of farm and forest products can now apply for the ARPA-Funded Primary Producer grant opportunity!  The Working Lands Enterprise Initiative (WLEI) has released a request for applications (RFA) totaling $1,000,000.  Examples of eligible primary production activities are growing crops, livestock rearing, maple sugaring, dairy, and harvesting timber. Grant requests for the ARPA-Funded Primary Producer Grant can be from $50,000 to $250,000. Please read the request for applications (link below) to learn about eligibility, the application process, and review the application questions. The pre-application opens for submission on November 9, 2022.

Learn More: Here  |  Deadline: December 16, 2022. 

Contact: Clare Salerno, Agriculture Development Specialist [email protected] 802-917-2637

Communities Caring for Canopy Grant

Communities Caring for Canopy grants provide seed funding to help communities develop and sustain community-wide programs for trees and forests in public places and right-of-ways. These grants allow for multiple program components to be merged into one grant application.Grants range from $1,000 – $5,000.

Learn more: here | Due: December 30th, 2022

Growing Urban Forests Grant

Growing Urban Forests in the Face of Emerald Ash Borer Grants offer support to communities seeking financial assistance for tree planting and reforestation efforts in consideration of the impact of the invasive emerald ash borer (EAB) on all species of native ash trees.  Grants range from $3,000 – $20,000. Eligibility aligns with the VT Department of Housing and Community Development’s state designation programs. Learn more: here | Due: December 30th, 2022

Emergency Preparedness

November is Cybersecurity Month!

Municipalities need to be continually thinking about the security of their citizens’ data and their own ability to respond to malicious attacks or system failures. Regardless of how your IT support is handled, it is important to evaluate your organization’s needs and determine if they are being met on a regular basis. It doesn’t need to be a complicated or lengthy process or require a special committee to be set up. Instead, think of it as a periodic “checkup” 

There is more great Cybersecurity information on VLCT’s website, including resources and vigilance handouts: https://www.vlct.org/resource/pacif-advice-cybersecurity

There are also a couple upcoming funding opportunities for cybersecurity upgrades: 

State Homeland Security Program (SHSP) 

(https://hsu.vermont.gov/homeland-security-unit/funding-opportunities/SHSP

Applications are due in early 2023 and a supplemental (2022) funding announcement is expected to be issued soon. The program provides 100% funding, but is competitive and municipalities must demonstrate risk. Funding can be utilized for cybersecurity planning (i.e., the development of cybersecurity response plans or developing a cybersecurity incident annex to an Emergency Operations Plan); cybersecurity training (i.e., phishing training, general awareness training, etc.); cybersecurity exercises; or cybersecurity equipment. Eligible expenses include computer hardware and operating system software, back-up computer hardware, operating systems, data storage, and contingency operations application software (remote or a dedicated alternate operating site).

Local Emergency Management and Emergency Operations Center Enhancement Grant (https://vem.vermont.gov/funding/empg)

Up to $50,000 per sub-recipient, but requires a 50% LOCAL, NON-FEDERAL MATCH.

Qualifying Activities/Projects include Information Technology (IT) equipment to enhance local EOC or shelters including computers, tablets, and projectors. Other potentially funded activities and equipment includes:

  1. Permanent Generators and generator installation or portable generator and building hookup
  2. Information Technology (IT) equipment to enhance local EOC or shelter including computers, tablets, and projectors
  3. Situation Awareness aids to include maps
  4. Communications: Base stations to support communication with State, Local, and/or Amateur Radio partners
  5. Interior Construction and Reconfiguration: Minimal construction inside existing facilities to support enhancement of the local EOC. This may include electrical, HVAC, reconfiguring or addition of partitions and walls.
  6. Equipment to include AEDs, Electronic messaging boards, shelter cots, supplies
  7. Project funding: Plan development, exercise design and conduct, training acquisition and hosting
  8. Fixed public alert and warning systems
  9. Public education initiatives to increase preparedness
  10. Shelters: Equipment and supplies necessary to run a local shelter, warming center, or cooling center.

If you are interested in applying or would like more information, please contact ACRPC Emergency Management Planner, Andrew L’Roe, [email protected] 

Due: November 15th, 2022

Hazard Mitigation Grants (https://vem.vermont.gov/funding/mitigation)

Contact Andrew L’Roe ([email protected]) with any questions about the grant opportunities below: 

Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP)

Mitigation of local roads and bridges, home acquisitions, structural elevations or relocations, replacement of undersized culverts, mitigation outreach and education.

(under this round, projects will be eligible to receive a 90% federal cost share,

requiring only a 10% local match (reduced from 25% local match)

Additional money for Benefit-Cost Analyses (BCA) for projects that are already designedApplications accepted on a rolling basis with a state application deadline on November 30, 2022.

Building Resilient Infrastructure and Communities (BRIC)

Grant program to states and local communities for mitigation activities

Next Round of applications due December 9, 2022

Flood Mitigation Assistance (FMA)

To reduce or eliminate the risk of repetitive flood damage to buildings and structures

Includes Community Flood mitigation projects to reduce future NFIP flood claims

Next Round of applications due December 9, 2022

Flood Resilient Communities Fund (FRCF)

Reducing the future public safety and water quality impacts of climate-related flood hazards, focusing on buyouts of flood-vulnerable propertiesNext Round of applications due March 31, 2022

Tools & Training

Energy

Green Saving Smart Program

Reaching Energy Equity Goals with GreenSavingSmart – GreenSavingSmart is a new service administered by Vermont’s five community action agencies that connects financial coaching with energy savings for low- and moderate-income Vermonters to ensure a cleaner, greener Vermont. Learn all about this initiative here. And, if you missed VECAN’s March 2nd webinar about this program, you can watch the recording here. Contact Maddison Shropshire: [email protected] for more information.

Five Things Your Energy Committee Can Tackle Right Now

In this new resource from VECAN, find an overview of five different areas of work that town energy committees can think about tackling when looking for their next project(s) to take on. Topics include strategies for reducing transportation and thermal emissions, communications and outreach, advocacy and more! It even features a newly published case study on engaging more young people in energy committee efforts. Check it out here. 

Apply for the VCRD Climate Catalysts Program!

The Climate Catalysts Leadership Program participants arrive with transformative, community-scale climate economy related projects and work toward developing their concepts into reality while building peer connections, strengthening leadership skills, and receiving project development support. VCRD, as an organization, strives to support locally-generated ideas and projects and the outstanding local leaders who champion them. The fourth cohort of Climate Catalysts which will begin in December. Both seasoned and new local leaders with a project concept addressing climate change in Vermont are encouraged to apply. There is no cost to participate in the program and a small stipend will be provided to participants.Learn More: Here  |  Application Due: November 30, 2022

Earn a $100 Rebate on DIY Weatherization Projects from Efficiency VT!

Use Efficiency VT’s library of how to videos to help keep warm this winter. 

  • VIDEO – Get tips on how to seal problem areas such as windows, outlets, and doors.
  • VIDEO – How to insulate your basement
  • VIDEO – How to weatherize your attic

Find even more DIY projects here. Complete three for a $100 rebate on your materials.

Community

Grants Management Symposium Date Change

Save the date on Thursday, December 8, 2022, for the Vermont Community Development Program’s Grants Management Symposium. Events will be held all day at the Capitol Plaza in Montpelier, Vermont.

VCLN Workshop: Effective Grant-Writing To Fund Your Initiative

December 7 | 10 – 11:30 | Virtual

Hear from a panel of grant funders and successful grant writers who will share tips and strategies on how to find grants that may support your work, how to craft an effective grant narrative, and where to find resources and support.

Equity

VLCT Announces New Equity Resources for Municipalities

The VLCT Municipal Equity Toolkit is a ten-part online resource that covers everything from creating a municipal equity committee to building a framework and action plan to listing equity-related books, podcasts, and videos. It is free and available to all VLCT members and the public at vlct.org/JDEIB-resources. VLCT’s equity consultants, Nikki Fuller Esq-SHRM-SCP of Workplace Matters and Dr. Wanda Heading Grant, helped create the toolkit in collaboration with the VLCT Equity committee and with the support of a grant from the Vermont Community Foundation. The toolkit includes resources for both internally focused equity efforts (ensuring a community is a model employer) and external equity resources (ensuring the community itself is a welcoming place to all). More information and resources on equity can also be found through the State of Vermont Office of Racial Equity.

Creating an LGBTQ+ Inclusive Workplace

Join VBSR and Mara Iverson for an interactive workshop to help employees and managers at all levels to increase fluency with LGBTQ+ inclusive concepts, terminology, and practices. Participants will learn and practice approaches for making work environments affirming and supportive for people of all genders and sexual identities. Participants will identify specific opportunities for and challenges to inclusivity. Participants will leave with broader knowledge of LGBTQ+ topics, methods for recognizing gaps in inclusivity, and ideas for how to apply affirming practices to fill those gaps.

When: Wednesday, November 30th, 2:00 – 3:30 PM

Location: Virtual Registration and Link

Natural Resources

Falls Rivers and Roads Training 

Sponsored by VT Rivers Program, VT Fish & Wildlife Program, and VT Agency of Transportation is offering a series of one-day classes to preserve, enhance, restore, and conserve Vermont’s natural resources, and protect human health, for the benefit of this and future generations. Visit the Rivers and Roads Training Website to learn more or Contact Staci Pomeroy:([email protected], 802-490-6191) or Todd Menees, ([email protected], 802-345-3510). 

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