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In The News

TDA Awards $33.5 Million in Community Development Grants
More than $33.5 million in Community Development Block Grant awards are on their way to rural cities and counties within the state's 24 planning regions. These federal funds awarded by the Texas Department of Agriculture are to fund infrastructure projects that improve the quality of life for many Texans in rural areas of the state.. Read complete article....

Saturday is "2-1-1 Day" in Texas
The Texas Health and Human Services Commission has declared Feb. 11 as the day to educate residents about 2-1-1, the free phone number that connects callers with services in their community that can improve their health and quality of life, according to a news release from the Golden Crescent Regional Planning Commission. Read complete article....

Amarillo Updated on $113 Million Downtown Redevelopment Project
The Heart of Texas Council of Governments has secured a Sustainable Communities Regional Planning Grant of $660,000 from the United States Office of Housing and Urban Development. Read complete article....

HOTCOG Grant To Strengthen Local Communities And Improve Competitiveness
The Heart of Texas Council of Governments has secured a Sustainable Communities Regional Planning Grant of $660,000 from the United States Office of Housing and Urban Development. Read complete article....

AACOG to Begin Planning to Improve Public Transportation Access for Seniors and People with Disabilities
Planning is under way to improve access to public transportation for seniors and people with disabilities in the Bexar County-San Antonio Metropolitan area. Read complete article....

H-GAC Benefits County, Region in Funding Projects
The Houston-Galveston Area Council serves as the clearinghouse organization for distributing state and federal funds in addition to performing long-term planning for 13 counties in Southeast Texas. Liberty County is one of the members and Precinct 1 Commissioner Todd Fontenot is a member of the board of directors for the organization. Read complete article....

Barton Honored for Improvements to Transportation Planning
The Texas Association of Regional Councils (TARC) last week presented TxDOTs John Barton with the 2011 State Agency Supporter Award in recognition of exemplary support and partnership with Councils of Governments (COGs) in the state of Texas. Read complete article....

Panhandle COG to Unveil High-Tech Notification System
The Panhandle Regional Planning Commission is about to realize a goal it’s pursued for a long time — a system to allow entities to instantly let large numbers of people know about anything from a tornado warning to school buses running late in the snow. Read complete article....

Texoma Council of Governments Teams Up to Fight Medicare Fraud
The Texoma Council of Government says medicare fraud is on the rise, and they say education and awareness is the best way to prevent senior citizens from being taken advantage of. 
So they're teaming up with Texas Senior Medicare Patrol to train volunteers to fight healthcare fraud. Read complete article....

2011 Texas Conference on Aging
The 2011 Texas Conference on Aging will be held in San Antonio, Texas from June 12 through June 15 at the Sheraton Gunter Hotel. Read complete article....

DETCOG Agrees to Apply $1.5M Toward Technical-Training Center
The Deep East Texas Council of Governments (DETCOG) board has passed a resolution to apply a $1.5 million grant from the U.S. Department of Commerce Economic Development Agency (DCEDA) toward a proposed training center. Read complete article....

TARC and Regional Council Reps Attend Texas Rural Challenge
TARC representatives and many regional council representatives attended the Texas Rural Challenge May 24-25, an inaugural conference of the Institute for Economic Development’s Rural Business Program at the Embassy Suites and San Marcos Conference Center. Read complete article....

Panhandle City-County Officials Convene on Shared Local Government Issues
Texas Association of Counties President Vernon H. Cook, Roberts County judge, hailed it as “a fascinating concept, getting cities and counties together. There is so much similarity between county and city needs," he said. Read complete article....

PRPC Approves Rural Planning Group
There will be a new way to tell transportation planners what the Panhandle needs. Board members with the Panhandle Regional Planning Commission voted Thursday to form a rural planning organization to provide elected officials an opportunity to have input into regional funding and planning. Read complete article....

VP Announces Tighter Enforcement of ARRA
Vice President Joe Biden and Recovery Accountability and Transparency Board Chairman Earl Devaney announced today the release of a Presidential Memorandum directing agencies to further intensify their efforts to improve reporting compliance by recipients of American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funds. Read complete article....

2011 Super Bowl will Bring Big Transit Changes to Dallas Area
Super Bowl events next year will require a dramatic but temporary overhaul of parts of the North Texas transportation system, including a temporary rail station in Arlington and changes to highway lanes. Read complete article....

2010 Census Count Important to Government Entities
As the 2010 Census Portrait of America Road Tour - a cross-country interactive experience designed to draw awareness to the once-a-decade population count - makes its way through the United States, officials in Texas are preparing to make sure every resident is accounted for. Read complete article....

2010 Officers Hosted First Quarterly Meeting
TARC 2010 Officers hosted first Quarterly meeting at Austin Airport Hilton on December 11. Read complete article....

NCTCOG Site Helps Match Up Carpooling Partners in D-FW Area
The city of Fort Worth is getting a matchmaking service, but the goal is not to create love matches. Instead, a local agency has set up the program to help save people money by sharing rides. Read complete article....

September is National Preparedness Month!
KnoWhat2Do, NCTCOG's public education emergency preparedness campaign, is gearing up to prepare North Central Texas in full force. For starters, KnoWhat2Do has become a National Preparedness Month Coalition Member with Ready.gov. This initiative is a nationwide effort to spread the word about preparing for all hazards in homes, businesses, and communities. The benefits of being a coalition member are to receive emergency preparedness resources to promote, highlight events, and have your organization listed on the Website. For more information, visit the KnoWhat2Do Website..

Texas Area Agency on Aging Receives Three Awards
On July 20, 2010, the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging (n4a) announced the 2010 recipients of its prestigious Aging Innovations and Achievement Awards at its annual conference in St. Louis, MO. Read complete article....

Falls Prevention Awareness Week Observed at Capitol
The Texas Falls Prevention Coalition kicked off the observance of Falls Prevention Awareness Week 2009 with a press conference in Austin at the Capitol. Read complete article....

Texas Comptroller Urges Small Cities and Counties to Take Advantage of Energy Saving Grants
Texas Comptroller Susan Combs today announced more than a thousand small cities and more than 200 counties in Texas can receive grants to help with energy efficiency and energy conservation projects. A total of about $45 million in federal stimulus funds can be used for projects that include public building energy retrofits and energy efficient street lighting. Read complete article....

John R. Fernandez Confirmed as U.S. Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development
U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke today praised the U.S. Senate’s vote to confirm John R. Fernandez as Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development. . Read complete article....

National Criminal Justice Association Elects New Leadership
The National Criminal Justice Association (NCJA) is proud to announce the new members of its Board of Directors including newly elected President Roland Mena, executive director of the Montana Board of Crime Control and Vice President Molly J.M. Perry, executive director of the Georgia Criminal Justice Coordinating Council. Read complete article....

Efficient Planning Purchasing is Goal of PlanSource
PlanSource, a cooperative procurement program of the Houston-Galveston Area Council, helps local governments streamline the procurement process Read complete article....

Cherokee Sheriff's Office Dispatch Computer System with COG Grant-Jacksonville Paper?
In a business where timing is everything, it helps to have the very latest technology to get first-responders to the scene of an emergency faster. Read complete article....

National Citizen Corps Achievement Awards: Texas Finalists
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has announced the finalists for The National Citizen Corps Achievement Awards–Celebrating Resilient Communities for 2009. Read complete article....

Texas Stimulus in Plain English: Who's watching your money?
Read complete article....

Commissioner Staples Announces Creation of Texas Broadband Task Force: Regional Representative Chosen
Read complete article....

AACOG Weatherization Assistance Program gets a boost!
Congressmen Henry Cuellar and Ciro Rodriguez recently announced that the recent federal economic recovery bill continues to pump money into the Bexar County economy... Read complete article....

Funding for Broadband Access Now Available
USDA has funding available for improving broadband access in rural areas via the 2009 Community Connect Broadband Grant Program. Read complete article....

Citizens seek fair, beneficial stimulus fund allocations
Read complete article....

2010 Budget Blueprint: Agency by Agency
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Rio Grande Council of Governments Announces New Executive Director
Read complete article....

2009 State of the State Address
Governor Rick PerryTexas Governor Rick Perry’s State of the State Address on January 27, 2009, highlights a desire to establish a fund to help local communities prepare for and respond to disasters, such as hurricanes Ike and Dolly, which struck the state last year. To listen to the entire address, click here.

Governor Perry Allocates $2.5 Million from State Planning Assistance Grant Funds
Read complete article....

Sour Lake, Ganado Form Sister-City Initiative
(From the Texas Government Insider, a publication of Strategic Partnerships, Inc.)

The cities of Sour Lake and Ganado have partnered to function as sister cities in times of crisis, such as the devastation wrought to each town by Hurricanes Ike and Rita. The partnership was spear-headed by Suzie Simmons, a member of the Sour Lake City Council and Ganado Mayor and Immediate Past-President of TARC, Clinton Tegeler. Both cities have similar populations and tax bases. For more information click here.

2008-2009 TARC Officers Elected
Read complete article....

Southwest Regional Transportation Workshop Highlights and Presentations
Read complete article....

Walter Scheiber Leadership Award
Walter Diggles, Sr.Walter Diggles, Sr., Executive Director of the Deep East Texas Council of Governments (DETCOG) and serves on the Executive Directors Council of NARC, is the recipient of the 2008 Walter Scheiber Leadership Award. This award recognizes the significant impacts an Executive Director has made at the local, state and national levels.

Mr. Diggles has served on numerous other Boards including the Texas Association of Regional Councils' Executive Director's Council as Chairman and has been appointed by Texas Governor Rick Perry to serve as Chairman of the OneStar National Service Commission. Mr. Diggles has also received several awards including the "Al J. Notzon Regional Unity Award" from NARC in 2006.

Since becoming Executive Director of the DETCOG, Mr. Diggles has seen his community through three separate disasters: the murder of James Byrd in 1998, the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster, and most recently through Hurricane Rita. His dedication and commitment to his community is reflected in all his work.

Federal Grant Allows for New Home Care Program
The Central Texas Area Agency on Aging, along with Scott & White Healthcare, have received a federal grant to test out a new home-based care model for older adults who may not be able to afford a nursing home or assisted-living facilities. More information can be found in this news article from NEWS8 Austin.

EDA's Annual Report
EDA publishes an annual report to update Congress on the agency’s programs, policies, performance and its annual investments made in each state. The report describes EDA programs and highlights examples of outstanding economic development investments. It also includes information on economic development districts, university center economic development activities, trade adjustment assistance centers and EDA award programs. EDA’s FY2007 annual report can be viewed at www.eda.gov.

Prescription Medicine: Friend or Foe?
People age 60 and over take an average of seven prescription medications every day. The more medications they take, the more likely they are to experience undesirable effects related to drug-drug interactions. Nationwide, approximately 45% of all older people who take medications experience some negative effects. To help older persons avoid these problems, the North Central Texas Council of Governments’ Area Agency on Aging funds a number of medication management services. The Agency provides complimentary rental of electronic medication dispensing machines, and funds medication reviews by medical personnel— either in the home, or at community sites. Although older persons need not have low incomes to qualify, service priority is given to those who are in financial need, isolated, suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, and/or recovering from a major illness.

For more information about medication management services, call 1-800-272-3921, ext. 1193, or visit the NCTCOG Area Agency on Aging website.

H-GAC Expands Free On-line Ride-sharing Program to Montgomery County
NuRide is a national, free ride-sharing program that currently operates in eight counties in the Houston area. The Houston-Galveston Area Council funds NuRide, and since the program began in the Houston region in June 2005, it has attracted 8,500 members, arranged 506,000 trips and reduced 15 million miles of road travel. NuRide now plans to offer its services to Montgomery County. Find out more...

Tom Green County CERT Assists at Shelter for Women and Children from YFZ Ranch
Photo The Tom Green County Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) was recently called into action by local officials after women and children who identify themselves as members of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints were removed from the group’s YFZ Ranch near Eldorado, in rural Schleicher County. The women and children were placed into shelter facilities in San Angelo in what has been described as is one of the largest child custody operations in the nation’s history. Read complete article....


Smokestacks AACOG Working with Bexar County to Track Greenhouse Gasses
Area officials want to take the fight against global warming local, and they believe a good first step is determining where the region's greenhouse gases are coming from. Bexar County commissioners have asked the Alamo Area Council of Governments to create an inventory of all greenhouse gases in the county, and Tuesday they approved spending $3,000 for the study. The city of San Antonio, the San Antonio Water System and CPS Energy have also committed to funding the project, which should produce a regional inventory of greenhouse gases by August. Read more....

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