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December 2019 RRRC Update
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Upcoming Events

January 8th
FHN Point-in-Time Count Subcommittee
RRRC Board Room | 10:00 am

January 22nd
FHN Point-in-Time Count
Region-wide | All Day

January 23rd
Food Council
RRRC Board Room | 5:30 pm

February 7th
VAPDC Winter Meeting
In partnership with VACo & VML
Richmond, VA | 9:00 am

February 26th
Regional Commission
RRRC Board Room | 1:00 pm
 
Commission Offers Thanks to Steve Walker & Roger Welch

At its December 11th meeting, the Rappahannock-Rapidan Regional Commission recognized two outgoing Commissioners with Resolutions thanking them for their service.

Mr. Steve Walker joined the Commission representing Culpeper County beginning in 2016 and served as a member of the RRRC Executive Committee during his time on the Commission. Prior to joining the Commission, Mr. Walker was engaged with RRRC on transportation and enviromental issues through VACo Region 7 committees and his familiarity and advocacy for regional coordination will be missed by Commissioners and staff alike.

Mr. Roger Welch, Commissioner from Rappahannock County, was appointed to the RRRC Board in January 2010 and served 10 years on the Commission. As of his departure, Mr. Welch had the second-longest tenure amongst active Commissioners and the Commission awarded him the 2019 Regional Distinguished Leadership Government award this past September. Mr. Welch's knowledge and concern for the history and character of the region were hallmarks of his service to RRRC.

Commissioners and staff wish both men well in their retirement from elected service and are grateful for their leadership and commitment to regional coordination and planning.

RRRC Chair Robert Coiner is pictured below with Mr. Walker (center) and Mr. Welch (right).

RRRC Seeking Applicants for Continuum of Care Coordinator

The Rappahannock-Rapidan Regional Commission seeks an energetic and detail-oriented individual for its Continuum of Care Coordinator position. The successful applicant will be able to work independently, while also collaborating with a diverse group of partner organizations and stakeholders working to make homelessness brief, rare and non-recurring in the Rappahannock-Rapidan region. Experience in homeless/human services, social work, or public administration is preferred.

The Continuum of Care Coordinator is a planning position with primary responsibility for providing leadership, coordination and staff support for the Foothills Housing Network (FHN) Local Planning Group in the Rappahannock-Rapidan region. The position is responsible for ensuring that the Rappahannock-Rapidan Regional Commission fulfills its responsibilities as FHN Lead Agency, in cooperation with the Virginia Balance of State Continuum of Care (CoC) and with regional public, private, and non-profit partners working in collaboration to address homelessness in the RappahannockRapidan region.

Interested candidates are encouraged to send cover letter, resume and minimum two (2) references to hr@rrregion.org. The position is open until filled, with application review beginning on January 2, 2020. RRRC is an equal opportunity employer.

Commission's Purely Piedmont Program Sponsors Farm to School Art Contests in Orange & Rappahannock

Orange and Rappahannock counties’ elementary schools participated in a Farm to School Art Contest sponsored by the Regional Commission’s Purely Piedmont program.  Students were asked to draw their favorite local farm-fresh food, or a picture of where their food comes from.  Schools districts held the contest during Virginia Farm to School Week in October and chose one winner from each grade to receive a Purely Piedmont T-shirt or cow drawstring bag.  Runners-up received a Purely Piedmont cow hat. 
 
Select winning artwork will appear in future Purely Piedmont marketing to promote the region’s locally-grown food.  The Regional Commission has offered to sponsor similar contests at other school districts in the region upon request.  A special thanks goes to the School Food Services Directors who led this effort: Linda Blair in Orange County and Amanda Butler in Rappahannock County.
 
Over the past six months, the Regional Commission has worked with the PATH Foundation to organize regional farm to school meetings with school districts, state agencies, and food businesses on a quarterly basis.  Discussion has focused on locally-grown food procurement and distribution, with the potential of forming a regional network and hiring a regional Farm to School liaison(s).  School districts were also surveyed to gauge current participation and costs, and inform future discussions at both the regional and state level.
 
The Commission’s Farm to School work is part of its larger effort to foster a sustainable food system in the region.  This effort is overseen by the Commission’s Regional Food Policy Council.  For additional information, please contact Michelle Edwards at medwards@rrregion.org, or visit the Commission’s Food System Webpage at www.rrregion.org/foodsystem.html

Pictures below used with permission of Orange County and Rappahannock County schools.

Commission Adopts First Active Transportation Plan
The Regional Commission adopted the RRRC Active Transportation Plan at its December meeting, marking the first time that such a plan has been endorsed.  Previously, the Commission developed several bicycle and pedestrian inventory documents reflecting existing and limited planned improvements.  The Active Transportation Plan incorporates a more robust data collection process, stakeholder involvement, locality assessments and includes additional outdoor recreation activities including river access and connections and equestrian accommodations.

The Active Transportation Plan aims to support and provide context to the continued development of a regionally integrated active transportation system and identifies five goals for a regional active transportation system:
  • Enhance connectivity
  • Improve safety
  • Encourage the development of an interconnected, multi-locality active transportation network
  • Support economic development and tourism through investments in the active transportation system
  • Develop and more accessible and equitable active transportation network
The plan can be used as a tool for localities that have already made investments in active transportation, as well as for localities that may be considering where active transportation infrastructure may fit into their short, mid, and long-range planning goals.  Local decisions will guide the overall implementation of any recommendations in the Active Transportation Plan or other locally-specific plans, though opportunities to consider multi-jurisdictional projects are also highlighted in the plan.

A copy of the adopted plan can be found on the RRRC website at http://www.rrregion.org/publications.html.
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