If you have trouble viewing this email, you can read it through your browser .
March 2010
President's Corner

The MACDEP Subcommittee met recently to begin to discuss CD programming in Montana; lots of great ideas were generated. If you’re interested to get involved in this new group, please contact us at:

-Paul Lachapelle
MACDEP President
MACDEP Happenings/Member News

2010 Rural Community Conference to Take Place Aug. 31-Sept. 1, SAVE THE DATE!!
Its official; the 2010 RCC Planning Committee has decided to schedule the next conference in Bozeman at MSU on Aug. 31-Sept 1. More information is forthcoming; please contact for more information and to be added to the conference update email list.

New Reports/Resources

Gallup/ Healthways Well-Being Index Site
The Well-Being Index and associated City, State and Congressional District Reports provide the only measurement today for total well-being. Beyond medical condition and access to healthcare coverage and services, the Index also questions respondents about economic, professional, emotional and social circumstances. With Well-Being Index data, it’s possible to quantify and establish a correlation between the places where people work and the communities in which they live and their well-being. This map from the Index shows that Montana ranks in the top quintile for well-being.

Well-Being Index by State

Interactive Map Shows Growth of Unemployment
According to the U.S. Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are more than 31 million people currently unemployed -- that's including those involuntary working part-time and those who want a job, but have given up on trying to find one. The map below serves as a vivid representation of just how much. Click here for the interactive version and watch the transformation of the U.S. economy from January 2007 -- approximately one year before the start of the recession -- to the most recent unemployment data available.

Unemployment Change

Five RURAL-Based Toolkits
Rural Dynamics Inc has posted the FIVE Northern Plains Conference Toolkits on their website.

New Directions for the Prairie Economy: Connecting Conservation and Rural Development in the Northern Great Plains
This publication by the WWF -US discusses opportunities that offer a proposed common ground for rural development and prairie conservation to build a new, more sustainable prairie economy together. It includes several maps and graphs including those below, which show projected summer temperature change by 2080 and the contribution of agriculture as percent of gross state product (GSP) in the five NGP states, 1969-2006.

Temperaature Change by 2080

Wind Capacity by State

2009 Montana County Health Profiles
This report has been prepared and distributed by the MT DPHHS with a critical set of demographic parameters on health in Montana.  Individual county reports (2 pages) are available here.  The map below shows the counties and reservations as taken from the full report.

Montana County and Reservation Map


Community Development “In the News”

National News

88% of Americans Support High-Speed Rail
A new survey conducted by HNTB Corporation says that nearly nine in ten Americans are currently open to high-speed rail travel for long-distance travel within the United States. HNTB Newsroom; Feb. 27

Driving on the Rise in America
After more than two years of declines in American driving patterns, the amount of driving seems to be on the rise. USA Today; Feb. 26

Poverty Heads to the Suburbs
The migration of America's low income population is spreading to the suburbs. But the suburbs aren't ready to handle the influx, according to this piece. Next American City; Feb. 25

Four Words That Could Save The Farm
Innovation. Engineering. Leadership. Institute.  Four powerful words, comprising the title of an energizing three-day class. Daily Yonder; Feb. 25

The Most and Least Affordable Places for Homebuyers
This article looks at the five metro areas with the most affordable housing options, and the five with the least affordable options. CNN Money; Feb. 24

The Migratory Patterns of Americans are Changing
The American Enterprise Institute looks closely at how migration patterns have changed state-by-state through the last couple of years of recession. The American Enterprise Institute; Feb 23

Startup Develops Fuel-Cell-Based Power Supply
A Silicon Valley startup plans to unveil this week a fuel cell capable of producing clean energy in amounts sufficient to power homes and corporations and possibly costing around $3k. Information Week; Feb. 23

Glimpse the Wireless Future of Transportation
The coming convergence of how we communicate and how we travel is spawning technologies that will change how we get around — and make transportation safer and more efficient, at the same time. Wired; Feb. 19

Most Federal Stimulus Money for Clean Energy Still in the Bank
Roughly $90 billion in the $787-billion American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, or stimulus bill, was earmarked for clean-energy programs, and to date about a third of that amount has been put to use, which is about the same ratio of federal stimulus fund spent--$263 billion--versus funds available. Christian Science Monitor ; Feb. 19

How Affordable is Your City?
CNN ranks 10 American cities according to housing affordability, and finds that foreclosures, median incomes and the availability of developable land all influencing housing affordability. CNN Money; Feb. 18

Millennials Aren't Buying American Dream
The younger generation of Americans will continue to rent rather than buy, predicts the Urban Land Institute. LA Examiner; Feb. 16

Wind Energy Blows Through Economic Downturn
Despite the global credit crunch and decreased energy demand in many countries, more wind energy was installed last year than ever before.. Worldwatch Institute; Feb. 12

Google to Build Ultra-Fast Broadband Networks
Google plans to build experimental, ultra-fast Internet networks in a handful of communities around the country. USA Today; Feb. 11

Start-ups are Key to New Jobs
Amidst all the proposals for jump-starting the jobs market through small business, more attention needs to be focused on start-ups. Atlanta Journal-Constitution; Feb. 11

Northwest Power and Conservation Council Unanimously Adopts Regional Energy Plan
The latest energy plan for the Pacific Northwest has been adopted with the goal of limiting greenhouse gas pollution by increased conservation and wind power development. KGW.com; Feb. 11

10 Ways to Boost Neighborhood Pride
Kyla Fullenwider offer ten simple ideas to improve the livability of your block. Good; Feb. 10

Economic Revitalization Starts on the Community Level.
Broad strokes won’t paint a pretty national economic development picture. What’s needed is a detailed application of business development on the local level says Steve Mercil, president and CEO of RAIN Source Capital. NASVF; Feb. 9

Global Warming? It's All About Land Use
In a new report looking at how cities in the American West can fight global warming, the authors conclude that the best strategy is to focus on economic and energy efficiency through smart growth. Lincoln Institute of Land Policy Blog; Feb 4

Millions of U.S. Homeowners Owe 75% More Than Home is Worth
It’s estimated that 4.5 million mortgage holders owe 75 percent more than the property's value, and more homeowners are deciding that it's easier just to walk away from such a situation  New York Times; Feb. 3

Upcoming Events

Three Lean Manufacturing Workshops
March 2, Bitterroot River Inn, Hamilton.
March 3, Wingate Inn, Missoula.
March 12, Montana Department of Commerce Building, Helena. The Montana Manufacturing Extension Center is offering workshops on lean manufacturing techniques in three locations in early March to help businesses be better prepared for the economic recovery. Each event runs from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Attendees must register in advance.

Public Facilities/Infrastructure Planning and Funding Workshops
March 3, Holiday Inn Downtown, Missoula, 8:30 AM
March 10, Hilton Garden Inn, Billings, 8:30 AM
March 16: Webinar, 8:30 AM
W2ASACT (Montana’s  Water, Wastewater and Solid Waste Action Coordinating Team) will be holding this series of workshops. There is no need to pre-register for any of the three W2ASACT workshops.

Welcome To Success In The New West!
March 11, 8:00 AM, Flathead Valley Community College, Kalispell. Flathead Area Young Professionals and the Flathead Valley Community College present the second annual Success in the New West, an educational and entertaining daytime event with top-ranked regional speakers and educators who will focus on the future, current trends and the local economy.

The ABC's of RFP's
March 11, 11:00 AM - 3:00 PM, MDT Auditorium, Helena. Do you want to learn the ABC's of how to properly fill out a Request for Proposal (RFP)? Responding to RFP's before your competition does may give you the edge you need. This workshop will help you learn the correct process, find out where to locate bids, simplify the answering of questions, and registering with the right database. Get to know the government market and have free lunch provided by the DBE program for taking time out of your week. Contact for details.

Native American Men’s Health Summit
April 1, 11:00 AM - 1:30PM (with lunch), MSU-Bozeman Procrastinator Theater. This gathering of special guests will provide an opportunity to discuss health and wellness issues for Native American men in Montana. Special Guests include: Jim Real Bird of the Crow Men’s Health Project and Shane Doyle, Buffalo Nations Leadership Group The event is part of the Earth Rights: Learning the Languages of Indigenous Environmentalism. A Native American Awareness Week Conference and is free; all are welcome to attend!

The Wheeler Center - "The 'Next' Economy: A Public Discussion On Jobs And Innovation
April 5 & 6, 12:00 PM, Best Western Grantree, Bozeman. The Wheeler Center will once again address the state of Montana’s economy at a statewide conference in Bozeman. In collaboration with many friends, partners and sponsors, we’ll explore and debate these questions, with the goal of offering a number of progressive and useful ideas for policymakers and planners across the state and region.

Community Development Society Webinar Series
Three webinar programs on “Initiating Innovation in the Face of Rapid Change” will be offered this spring through the Community Development Society.
April 8 - Strategic Doing 365
May 13 – Breakthrough Solutions for Your Community
June 3 - Innovative Collaboration with Elected Officials 
Webinar time is 2:00-3:00 PM CST.  Register on-line here and follow the front page link to registration page.

Idaho Rural Economic Development Conference
May 6–7, Coeur d’Alene, ID. The Idaho Economic Development Association and the US Department of Labor are hosting this conference. There will be a workshop on the topic of entrepreneurial culture in rural communities.  A number of rural communities have tried to move in that direction but have failed for a variety of reasons besides being small and remote.  These communities need to help the entrepreneurs find capital, gain access to knowledge and innovations from outside the community, and acquire the technical and managerial know-how to cultivate their growth. Contact for more info.

SAVE THE DATE! Senator's Statewide Job Creation Summit
Sept. 13 & 14, Butte. Montana's senior U.S. Senator Max Baucus announced that Butte will be home to Montana's next Economic Development Summit. This is the Senator's fifth Job creation conference. The event will bring Montana businesses together while providing resources to foster the entrepreneurial spirit in Montana- all to boost the economy and get workers back on the job.

Grant/Award Opportunities

Grants for Community &  Economic Development - 2010 Digital Edition
See who's giving and getting grants in your field. Strengthen your search for funds with Grants for Community & Economic Development. This new Grant Guide reveals the scope of current foundation giving in the field. You'll find descriptions of nearly 19,000 grants in excess of $5.5 billion from more than 1,000 foundations.

Montana Development Council Selects Growth Through Agriculture Projects
The Montana Agriculture Development Council has offered funding totaling $401,167 to 13 agricultural development projects under the state's Growth Through Agriculture program, according to council Chair David Tyler.

USDA/RD Application Deadlines Announced
The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Rural Development program has received funding information for 2010 for Business and Cooperative programs. Please note that
there are no ARRA funds remaining in the Rural Business Enterprise Grant program although there is plenty of Guarantee authority available in the Business and Industry (B&I) Guarantee program through September 30, 2010.

Six New Grant Opportunities have been added to the MSU Extension Website.

Montana News

Bitterroot River Drainage has Lowest Level of Snowpack in Montana
Snowpack levels across Montana are well below average this winter, and in the Bitterroot River drainage, levels are the lowest at 55 percent of average. Ravalli Republic ; Feb. 17

A Need for Speed: Rural Montana Calls for Better Internet Access
Deloney says the FCC could help bridge the digital divide if its new National Broadband Plan extends the existing Universal Service Fund rules and resources to broadband and mobile devices. KPAX; Feb. 15

Amtrak Reports Fewer Riders Boarded Trains in Montana in 2009
According to a report released last week, the number of people climbing aboard or deboarding Amtrak trains at Montana's 12 stops in 2009 fell to 2005 levels.
Great Falls Tribune ; Feb. 8

Broadband Cuts Wide Swath Through Montana
Compared with other rural states and even some urban areas, broadband Internet service in Montana is widely available. Great Falls Tribune; Feb. 7

MSU Extension Community Development
Wilson Hall 1156 P.O. Box 172240
Bozeman, MT 59717-2240
Tel: (406) 994-3620
To subscribe to the Montana CD E-Newsletter, send a request to: