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Click here to see this online
 
 
 

February 19, 2021

 

 
 
32nd Annual Rural CED Conference 
 

Rural America has a higher concentration of older adults than urban and suburban areas. Less known is the degree of innovation that has emerged from necessity and creativity in rural communities, to harness the talents and address the needs of their older citizens. Sandy Markwood of the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging (n4a) will discuss ways that rural communities are supporting older adults, not just to age in place, but to thrive. Programs highlighted will cover services that include transportation, housing, health promotion, telehealth support, and combatting social isolation. The 32nd Annual Rural Community Economic Development Conference will be presented virtually February 24-25, 2021, in conjunction with the Governor's Rural Affairs Council and Rural Partners. Please visit our conference portal page to register and check the schedule. Registration is $25 per person for both days.

 

 
 
 Heider
 

Each month, community bank presidents and CEOs in nonurban agriculturally and energy-dependent areas of a 10-state region are surveyed regarding current economic conditions in their communities and their projected economic outlooks six months down the road. Bankers from Colorado, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wyoming are included. The Rural Mainstreet Index (RMI) focuses on approximately 200 rural communities with an average population of 1,300. It gives the most current real-time analysis of the rural economy. Ernie Goss, PhD, Jack A. MacAllister Chair in Regional Economics at Creighton University's Heider College of Business and Bill McQuillan, former chairman of the Independent Community Banks of America, created the monthly economic survey in 2005. For the third time in the past four months, the Creighton University RMI climbed above growth neutral, to its second highest level since January 2020. “Recent sharp improvements in agriculture commodity prices, federal farm support payments, and the Federal Reserve’s record-low short-term interest rates have underpinned the Rural Mainstreet Economy in a solid and positive growth range. However, the rural economy remains well below pre-pandemic levels,” said Goss. “Bankers reported that their biggest economic concerns for 2021 are excessive inflation and higher long-term interest rates.”

 

 
 
IL Product 
 

The Illinois Department of Agriculture (IDOA) announced the launch of Illinois Product Online Marketplace. This online platform provides an opportunity to purchase Illinois products in place of the annual Illinois Product Expo, which was cancelled due to Covid-19. Now through March 3, 500 Illinois products from 55 vendors throughout the state will be available for purchase at www.IllinoisProductsOnline.com.  “This past year has shown us now more than ever, people are wanting locally sourced products,” said IDOA Marketing Representative Jackie Sambursky. “Our summer farmers markets were a big hit, so when the time was approaching for our Illinois Product Expo, we reached out to Illinois’ ag products vendors and they were on board to provide their products for consumers online.” Customers can have their orders delivered for $11 or pickup for a $3 fee. Both pickup and delivery will take place March 6 and 7, with pickup taking place at the Illinois Building on the Illinois State Fairgrounds. Delivery orders will be made within Sangamon County.

 

 
 
 USDA
 

USDA Rural Development is inviting applications for grants under the Rural Business Development Grant (RBDG) Program for fiscal year (FY) 2021, subject to funding availability. This notice is issued to allow applicants sufficient time to leverage financing, prepare and submit their applications, and give the Agency time to process applications within FY 2021. Successful applications will be selected by the Agency for funding and subsequently awarded to the extent that allowance may ultimately be made available through appropriations. All applicants are responsible for any expenses incurred in developing their applications. Complete applications may be offered in paper or electronic format to the appropriate Rural Development State Office and must be received by 4:30 p.m. local time on March 31, 2021. 

 

 
 
LGE Webinar Series 
 

February 25 | Noon: DEI in Education Policy: Leading with Equity
What is the role of K-12 education in upholding the values of equity and diversity? How do we establish an equitable environment for all students that supports learning and justice? Let’s talk about it! Let’s explore strategies to address inequities in today’s environment and reimagine how learning communities could look and feel. Contact: Nancy Ouedraogo

 
 

UPCOMING EVENTS

February 19 - Governor's Hometown Award Application Due Date

February 23 - 2021 Illinois Virtual Hemp Summit

February 24 & 25 - 32nd Annual Rural Community Economic Development Conference

February 25 - Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Local Education Policy Series (Part 1): Leading with Equity

March 2 - 2021 Annual Membership Meeting of Illinois Rural Partners

March 17 - Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Local Education Policy Series (Part 2): Equitable Employee Management Practices

 
 
 
 
 

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