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 League Letter, March 28, 2017 

League Letter | Volume 38 | Issue 13

Municipal Equation EP 21: Murals Unlock a City

Town Hall Day is Tomorrow

Attend the League’s Spring Meetings for Insurance Information, Member Services Updates

2017 Regional Master Municipal Clerks Academies

Outdoor Lighting Webinar

State Transportation Improvement Program Public Information Sessions

N.C. Department of Transportation Webinar

N.C. Division of Coastal Management Grants

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Regional Conservation Partnership Program

Division of Water Infrastructure Announces Available Funding for spring 2017

Application Period for Hazard Mitigation Program Open

2018 NC 911 Board Grant Cycle Opened

Financial Fiduciary Responsibilities for Elected Officials

In the News: Charlotte Wants to Open its Streets to GM's Self-Driving Cars

Job opportunities

Calendar

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Municipal Equation EP 21: Murals Unlock a City

Sure, perspectives vary on public art. But on this episode we visit a small southern city with a ton of buy-in for art as a transformative tool -- for revitalization, community pride, local history, economic development -- all starting with publicly facilitated yet privately financed murals. And then, for our host, comes a funny coincidence. Hear what it's all about on this episode of Municipal Equation.

Town Hall Day is Tomorrow

Town Hall Day is all set for tomorrow, March 29th in Raleigh with a few changes. If you’re pre-registered, you should have received an email on Monday with detailed information about the day’s events. The locations for the morning briefings and parking have changed – attendees will park in the McLaurin Performing Arts Center Deck and then take a shuttle bus to the morning briefings at the NC Museum of History. Click here to access a map of tomorrow’s event locations.

Attend the League’s Spring Meetings for Insurance Information, Member Services Updates

In the past, you may have attended two separate Spring Meetings related to the League’s member services – one for insurance and one for general League activities, advocacy, etc. This year, we are streamlining our efforts to offer you a more efficient option -- attend the Spring Meeting closest to you to learn about insurance renewals for the health, workers’ compensation and property and liability insurance pools; legislative and grassroots advocacy efforts; risk control training opportunities; strategic planning efforts; and other important member services.

We want to make sure municipal officials and staff members are getting the most from your League membership. Join us at one of the breakfast, lunch, or dinner meetings to hear about:

  • Insurance renewal information and rates from the League’s Health Benefits Trust, Workers’ Compensation Trust, and Property and Liability Trust
  • Exclusive risk control training and programs from our insurance pools to help save your city or town money and protect your resources
  • Legislative updates related to our member-driven municipal advocacy goals
  • Advocacy and grassroots efforts and events available to League members
  • Legal consulting services
  • HR consulting services
  • And more!  

These meetings are perfect for Mayors, Council Members, Managers, HR Directors, Finance Officers, Risk Managers and other municipal employees – we look forward to seeing your city or town staff members on the Spring Tour. Click here to find the meeting closest to you and to register.

2017 Regional Master Municipal Clerks Academies

The UNC School of Government, in cooperation with the North Carolina League of Municipalities (NCLM) and the North Carolina Association of Municipal Clerks (NCAMC), is pleased to announce the schedule for this year's Regional Master Municipal Clerks Academies. The academies will take place on March 31 at Wilson, April 21 at Cramerton, and April 28 at High Point. Each academy will begin at 8:30 a.m. and end at 4:00 p.m. and will include the following sessions: Street Smarts; Spreading the Joy: Limits on Multiple Office-Holding; Financing Capital Projects 101; and Clerk Trivia. Click here to register for on of the academies.

Outdoor Lighting Webinar

Save the Date for the next joint meeting between League members and Duke Energy to discuss issues surrounding the modernization of municipal street lighting. The meeting will take place by webinar on April from 21st 10:00 – 11:30. This webinar will serve as a continuation of discussions that began after the League, in 2013, intervened in the Duke Energy Carolinas rate case before the North Carolina Utilities Commission. It’s an opportunity for Duke to check in with municipal customers to discuss outdoor lighting strategies, updates and sustainability efforts. Please, register here; agenda will be available soon!

State Transportation Improvement Program Public Information Sessions

The State Transportation Improvement Program (STIP) is a document developed cooperatively by local, regional and state transportation entities. It includes a list of multi-modal transportation projects, such as highway, transit and bicycle based on the state’s long-range transportation goals. The projects are drawn from and are consistent with a Statewide Long-Range Transportation Plan, Countywide Transportation Plans and Metropolitan Transportation Plans. There will be nine (9) public information sessions held from March 29-May 9 across the state designed to inform the public about the projects in the Draft STIP and gather input on the process to create it. People who cannot attend a meeting in person can also provide feedback via phone, fax and e-mail. Contact the NCDOT for dates and locations.

N.C. Department of Transportation Webinar

The N.C. Department of Transportation will hold a webinar to inform municipal and local government partners and those who sit on Metropolitan and Rural Planning Organizations about changes to federal aide projects and their approval process. The major change involves the use of the newly revised programmatic categorical exclusion checklist. NCDOT and the Federal Highway Administration have recently updated the Categorical Exclusions Agreement, which will change much of how NCDOT does business with FHWA with regards to categorical exclusions. The webinar will take place March 30 at 12:45 p.m. Click here to register. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar. For questions or additional information, please contact Donna Keener (dckeener@ncdot.gov) or Jon Nance (jgnance@ncdot.gov).

N.C. Division of Coastal Management Grants

The N.C. Division of Coastal Management recently announced the availability of $100,000 in grants to local governments in 20 coastal counties for projects during fiscal year 2017-2018. Grant funding will be prioritized for natural hazards and storm recovery projects. Proposals for projects not related to the natural hazards and storm recovery topics may be submitted for non-prioritized funding consideration. The maximum request is $20,000. The deadline for submission is March 31. Click here for more information on how to apply.

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Regional Conservation Partnership Program

Through this fourth Regional Conservation Partnership Program Announcement for Program Funding, the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) will award up to $252 million dollars to locally driven, public-private partnerships that improve the nation’s water quality, combat drought, enhance soil health, support wildlife habitat and protect agricultural viability. Applicants must match or exceed the federal award with private or local funds. The NRCS national office will host multiple webinars about the pre-application and full project application processes. Pre-applications are due April 21, 2017. Click here for details.

Division of Water Infrastructure Announces Available Funding for spring 2017

The Division of Water Infrastructure in the N.C. Department of Environmental Quality has announced the spring 2017 funding round and related application training. Funding offered this round will include a portion of the Connect NC bond program and all applications must be received by the division no later than close of business on April 28, 2017. Application training for the following funding programs will be offered in late February and early March in Asheville, Salisbury, Kinston, and Raleigh. Space is limited at each location, so please RSVP to Jennifer Haynie at jennifer.haynie@ncdenr.gov (919.707.9173) at least a week prior to the training event you plan to attend. Click here for more information on the application.

Application Period for Hazard Mitigation Program Open

The N.C. Emergency Management application period for the Hazard Mitigation Grant Program is now open. With the catastrophic impact of Hurricane Matthew on North Carolina, the state expects to see the largest HMGP offered since Hurricane Floyd. N.C. Emergency Management is accepting Letters of Interest for possible inclusion in the state’s HMGP submission to FEMA. Eligible applicants are local governments with a FEMA and NCEM approved and adopted Hazard Mitigation Plan. The deadline for receiving the letters is May 1, 2017. A separate goal of March 31, 2017, has been set for receiving letters for an expedited grant process for communities facing a more pressing resilient housing need. Communities will have to develop a process for gathering documentation and application for community residents, but technical assistance and additional help can be provided. Questions regarding the Hazard Mitigation Grant Program, technical assistance with applicant intake or eligibility can be directed to Nick Burk, Hazard Mitigation Grants Section Manager, at 919-825-2301, or Sharon Winstead, Hazard Mitigation Supervisor, at 919-825-2356.

2018 NC 911 Board Grant Cycle Opened

The 2018 NC 911 Board grant cycle is now open and the board is accepting grant applications. You can access the application by visiting the 911 Board website. The link can be found on the rotating “Carousel” on the 911 Board website landing page, in the “911 Forms Panel” under “Resources” or by using this link. Once completed, the application along with any accompanying documents must be emailed to 911comments@its.nc.gov. Applications will only be accepted via email. Any application received via mail, fax or other media will not be accepted. The deadline for filing is midnight, June 7. If you have any questions, please contact Richard Taylor at 919-754-6624 or via richard.taylor@nc.gov.

Financial Fiduciary Responsibilities for Elected Officials

The Local Elected Leaders Academy (LELA) will be offering the “Financial Fiduciary Responsibilities for Elected Officials” workshop on Wednesday, June 14th from 9:00 am – Noon at the Moore County Agricultural Center located at 707 Pinehurst Avenue, Carthage, NC. This workshop will focus on the financial fiduciary responsibilities that elected officials have regarding the annual audit, the oversight of fund balance, and reporting requirements of the Local Government Commission. Specifically, there will be a focus on two of the most frequently challenging arenas: what an audit is (and, more importantly, what it is not) and the limitations and flexibility that a governing board has regarding the use of fund balance. Instruction will include real-life examples of internal control challenges and how board involvement can help overcome those challenges. Attendees will also learn about the types of questions that elected officials should ask of their staff and their independent auditors, and what various correspondences from the Local Government Commission actually mean. This workshop is primarily for municipal and county elected officials and there is no cost to attend the workshop. Click here to Register

In the News: Charlotte Wants to Open its Streets to GM's Self-Driving Cars

Charlotte wants to be a pioneer in self-driving cars, and is in early talks with General Motors about the car maker testing new autonomous vehicles, most likely in University City. The city has wanted to be a test site since it applied for the U.S. Department of Transportation's Smart Cities program in early 2016. That was a frantic, three-month competition between cities as to who could best solve congestion issues. Click here to read this and other news.