RRRC May 2019 Newsletter
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May 2019 RRRC News
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Upcoming Events

May 6th
Spring Transportation Meetings
VDOT Culpeper District
VTrans Open House | 3:00 pm
SYIP Public Hearing | 4:00 pm

May 16th
Land Use & Environment Committee
RRRC Board Room | 10:00 am

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

May 29th
Managing Fill Dirt & Debris Disposal in Rural Lands Workshop
The Barn at LFCC, Warrenton | 10am-3pm
Free Registration

May 30th
Rural Transportation Committee
RRRC Board Room | 1:30 pm
RRRC Seeking Nominations for 2019 Distinguished Leadership Awards

The Rappahannock-Rapidan Regional Commission is accepting nominations for the 2019 Regional Distinguished Leadership Citizen and Government Awards.  The awards, first presented in 2007, are intended to honor members of the Rappahannock-Rapidan region for outstanding contributions to the region, and facilitation and support for regional coordination, planning, and communication in addressing issues or priorities of regional significance.  A list of past honorees can be found at


  • Nominees for the Government award are Elected Officials or Government Staff
  • Nominees for the Citizen award may be citizen planners, business leaders, community volunteers, appointed members of local Planning Commissions, Boards of Zoning Appeals, or other Planning-related committees

Nominations may be submitted online, or to receive a paper copy, please contact Patrick Mauney at

Nominations are due by Friday, June 21, 2019 and will be presented to the selected honorees at the RRRC Annual Meeting in September.

Managing Fill Dirt & Debris Disposal in Rural Areas Workshop Set for May 29th
The Rappahannock-Rapidan Regional Commission, Piedmont Environmental Council and Northern Virginia Regional Commission are hosting a free workshop on Managing Fill Dirt and Debris Disposal in Rural Areas on Wednesday, May 29th from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.  The workshop will be held at the Barn on the Fauquier Campus of Lord Fairfax Community College.  

Workshop Overview
As construction picks up in the region, many of our localities are struggling with fill dirt and inert debris dump sites popping up in rural areas. These problematic sites come in many forms, but some have caused significant problems because they are well in excess of the stated agricultural purpose and are impacting adjacent landowners and citizens.

The agenda includes speakers from VDACS, VDOF, and DEQ. There will also be an opportunity for representatives from attending localities to share their experiences (e.g. how you've have handled it, what has and hasn't worked, etc.).

Who Should Attend
The workshop is intended for county and municipal staff from legal, zoning, stormwater, erosion and sediment control departments, as well as planning commissioners and elected officials.

Please register online at Eventbrite.  The workshop is free and lunch will be provided to those registered.
Regional Tourism Committee Hosting Owned, Earned, and Paid Media Workshop June 25th
The Rappahannock-Rapidan Regional Tourism Committee invites you to a free workshop - Owned, Earned & Paid: How To Master Media & Know Your Audience - hosted at Morais Vineyards & Winery in Bealeton.

Led by members of the Regional Tourism Committee, the workshop will enable participants to learn both effective and successful online marketing strategies while having the opportunity to network with other area businesses and tourism professionals. This event is free and open to the public. Light refreshments will be provided and Morais Vineyards & Winery will open the public Tasting Room and offer a 20% discount off of tastings for any workshop participants, immediately following the conclusion of the workshop.

Questions may be directed to Hunter Berry at
Owned, Earned, and Paid: How to Master Media and Know Your Audience Workshop

Tuesday, June 25th
9:30 am to Noon

Morais Vineyards & Winery
11409 Marsh Road
Bealeton, VA 22712

Who Should Attend
Open to anyone, including Tween Rivers Trail members, Tourism and Agritourism businesses and stakeholders

Registration is free.  RSVP kindly requested through Eventbrite.
Town of Gordonsville Safe Routes to School Walkabout Completed
Representatives from the Town of Gordonsville, Gordon-Barbour Elementary School, and the Regional Commission recently completed a Safe Routes to School Walkabout assessment through the Virginia Department of Transportation's Safe Routes to School program.  The assessment included hands-on walking and biking infrastructure assessment conducted at the elementary school in April to identify opportunities to enhance safety and walkability for students, parents, staff, and citizens, and allows for those stakeholders to experience existing conditions, share ideas and perspectives, and build consensus around potential solutions.  A follow-up Walkabout report  will identify potential infrastructure or safety enhancements to complement the existing sidewalk infrastructure near the elementary school and within the Town of Gordonsville.

RRRC staff provided grantwriting and coordination assistance to the Town of Gordonsville for the project.  Questions may be directed to Joe Costello at

As a reminder, Safe Routes to School infrastructure projects can be submitted through VDOT's Transportation Alternatives grant program.  Pre-applications for such projects are due by July 1, 2019 with full applications due by October 1, 2019 for the upcoming two-year funding cycle.
USDA Announces ReConnect Rural Broadband Funding Program - First Application deadline is May 31st
In April, Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue announced that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is now accepting online applications for funding through the new ReConnect Rural Broadband Pilot Program. In this first round of funding, USDA is making available at least $600 million in rural broadband projects, through $200 million in grants, $200 million in loan and grant combinations, and $200 million in low-interest loans.

The application deadlines for each of these funding packages are as follows:
  • May 31, 2019, for projects seeking federal funds from the grants-only package;
  • June 21, 2019, for projects seeking a combination of federal loans and grants; and
  • July 12, 2019, for projects seeking low-interest federal loans.
This $600 million appropriation from Congress more than doubles federal funding available through USDA’s longstanding broadband programs. Future rounds of funding for ReConnect will be announced later in 2019.  Congressman Denver Riggleman and USDA Rural Development are hosting a training seminar on the ReConnect program on Wednesday, May 8th from 9am to Noon at Piedmont Virginia Community College in Charlottesville.  An RSVP for that event is requested to

In addition, Virginia applicants must submit two letters from the Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD).  The first letter will confirm that a proposed project area has not received state funding in the past five years, and the second letter will include details on the Commonwealth's ongoing efforts to address broadband connectivity.  The latter will provide up to 20 points in the ReConnect scoring process.  Project area submissions may be directed to by Monday, May 20th.

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