Special to the Daily News
The Center for Rural Development, a nonprofit organization located in Somerset, is accepting grant applications from city and county governments and eligible nonprofit organizations in Bell County for the next round of federally funded Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) mini-grants to help advance strategic planning efforts throughout the region.
Grant applications will be accepted through Nov. 15. Grants range from $5,000 to a maximum of $10,000 and are scheduled to be awarded in March.
The ARC mini-grants, awarded through The Center’s Developing and Implementing Community Strategies Program, may be used for either the successful creation of a strategic plan or the implementation of priority community development projects identified in existing strategic plans.
The Center encourages prospective applicants to incorporate the use of technology solutions in the implementation and execution of these plans and projects.
“Stimulating innovative and sustainable economic development solutions in the region we serve are at the core of The Center’s mission, and these grants target communities that have the ideas — but lack the resources — to move forward,” Lonnie Lawson, president and CEO of The Center, said.
“Grants awarded during the last ARC funding cycle made a significant impact on each of the counties, cities or organizations that received them, and we fully expect this new funding will build on that success and impact our region to a much greater extent,” he said.
All projects must be completed within six months after the grant announcement and require a local cash match of 20 percent of the total project cost.
Since 2005, more than $475,000 in ARC mini-grant funding has been awarded by The Center to 39 Southern and Eastern Kentucky communities to advance local economic and community development plans.
Bell County has received a total of $48,000 in ARC funds since 2008. In 2008, the county used $12,800 of ARC money to develop a strategic plan. In phase two of a Comprehensive Plan for Future Economic Growth in Bell County, the county was awarded $20,000 for plan development.
In 2010, the county received another $10,000 from ARC grant money for an implementation project. The county also received $5,200 for a brand and logo implementation plan that helped create the new Bell County logo.
For more information on applying for ARC funding support through The Center, contact Patti Simpson at 606-677-6000 or email email@example.com.