Author Archive

Rural Seniors and Their Homes

“One of the most dramatic demographic shifts in the history of our nation will occur over the next three decades, as the elderly population is expected to more than double in size” (Housing Assistance Council). This article examines the need for affordable senior housing given the increasing population of elderly citizens. Read the article for more information and links to additional resources. 

Rural Seniors and Their Homes

Reclamation and Development Planning Grants

The Reclamation and Developments Grant Program is transitioning to the State of Montana grant application and tracking database called WebGrants at www.fundingmt.org. The attachments provide instructions on how to register for an account and for how to complete an online grant application. Please call Stephanie Hester at 406-444-6691 or Alicia Stickney at 406-444-0547 for questions or technical support.

WHO:  Tribes, cities, counties, conservation districts, and other local government entities

WHAT:  Planning for natural resource projects that provide natural resource benefits in one of two categories:

·            mineral development impacts or

·            crucial state need. 

Mineral development impact projects must:

  1. Reclaim land, water or other resources adversely affected by mineral development, or
  2. Mitigate damage to public resources caused by mineral development, or
  3. Research, demonstrate, or provide technical assistance to promote the wise use of Montana minerals, or
  4. Investigate and remediate sites where hazardous wastes or regulated substances threaten public health or the environment, or
  5. Research to assess existing or potential environmental damage resulting from mineral development.

Crucial state need projects must prevent or eliminate severe and unacceptable damage to natural resources or capture extraordinary public benefit that would otherwise be lost. Public benefit from implementation of this type project must directly relate to natural resources. 

Project activities may include, but are not limited to:  (1) problem analysis, (2) feasibility or design studies, (3) environmental monitoring, (4) remedial action plans, (5) technology demonstration, (6) research, (7) construction, or (8) other related actions that lead to a full-scale project.

Funding limit:  Up to $50,000 per planning project, depending on intended planning activities.

Eligible projects that do not receive funding this cycle can resubmit in summer 2015, pending Legislative approval of additional planning funding.

For more information, visit the website at http://dnrc.mt.gov/divisions/cardd/resource-development/reclamation-and-development-grants-program.  

Regional Innovation Acceleration Network (RIAN)

The Regional Innovation Acceleration Network website provides resources for existing VDOs, or Venture Development Organizations. A VDO is a business-driven, public or nonprofit organization that promotes regional growth by providing a flexible portfolio of services, including: assisting in the creation of high-growth companies; providing expert business assistance to those companies; facilitating or making direct financial investments; and, speeding the commercialization of technology. RIAN supports the community of existing and emerging VDOs around the country by providing the means for peer-to-peer sharing of information and best/common practices and helping to identify funding opportunities for VDOs as well as provide tools to help regions approach the creation of their own VDO.

Northwest Area Foundation

The Northwest Area Foundation (NWAF) is committed to the well-being of the people in our region. They support efforts across an eight-state region, which includes Montana, to reduce poverty and achieve sustainable prosperity. They focus on the work of proven or promising organizations — those that have demonstrated success and those that are on the cutting edge and poised to do innovative work in poverty reduction. The foundation regularly disperses grants to organizations within their region. To find out more, follow the link.

Partnership for Sustainable Communities

The Partnership for Sustainable Communities works to coordinate federal housing, transportation, water, and other infrastructure investments to make neighborhoods more prosperous, allow people to live closer to jobs, save households time and money, and reduce pollution. The partnership agencies (HUD, EPA, DOT) incorporate six principles of livability into federal funding programs, policies, and future legislative proposals.

An informative webinar can be viewed by clicking here.  

Rural Voices for Conservation Coalition: Vision for Public Rangelands

This work focuses on policy-making based on collaboration between public and private landowners for the conservation of rangeland and grazing land in the Midwest. Used for ranching, recreational activities, and wildlife conservation, the grasslands of the west are highly valuable to both the public and to ranchers. This document provides recommendations for policy that provide satisfactory solutions to communities for both the conservation and use of rangelands.  

Rural Voices for Conservation Coaltion Vision for Public Rangelands

Recreational Trails Program

The Recreational Trails Program is administered by Montana State Parks to promote public health, economic growth, transportation infrastructure, and local community pride and identity. Grant funding associated with the program is available for Montana communities to conduct trail maintenance, build new trails, develop trailside facilities, and provide education and safety on outdoor recreation. Click here to learn more.  

Rural Broadband Connectivity

The Community Connect program makes funds available for cooperatives, incorporated organizations, tribes, and government units to complete broadband projects in rural areas. Projects must seek to provide internet services to areas where broadband is least likely to be available and most likely to have a huge impact on quality of life. Applications for the FY 2015 cycle must be submitted by February 17, 2015, via grants.gov. An application guide can be found here: www.rurdev.usda.gov.

One Montana

One Montana is a grassroots organization aimed at connecting rural and urban centers in Montana to create positive collaboration for maximized success in economic, land use, and agricultural development. One Montana focuses on issues of landowner/sportsmen relations, cultural exchange programs for youth, business, and government, and local foods initiatives. To find out more about partnering with local and regional organizations, click here to visit the site.

MT Geographic Information

Montana State Library develops and maintains an extensive collection of Montana’s geographically referenced information about the cultural and natural resources for the state. Montana State Library also provides technical assistance and develops information discovery, access, analysis, and interpretation tools. This MSL geo-information website contains an extensive simple and searchable dataset on Montana, aerial photographs of Montana, and also provides a web mapping service where users can access the most up-to-date GIS data over the web.   Click here to learn more.