Article originally appeared in the Watertown Daily Times, written by Steve Sharp. Original article can…
The Community Economic Development Program is pleased to accept applications for the Community Economic Analysis for Rural Wisconsin Communities (CEA-RWC) Pilot Initiative supported by the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC).
What is the CEA-RWC Pilot Initiative?
As the Wisconsin economy builds back from the COVID pandemic recession, many rural communities struggle with identifying opportunities and strategies to move community economic development efforts forward. These rural communities often do not have the needed resources (i.e., staff, money or local expertise) to engage in comprehensive community economic development planning. The Community Economic Analysis for Rural Wisconsin Communities (CEA-RWC) pilot program is a joint effort between the University of Wisconsin, the Division of Extension, and the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation to bring a structured community economic development strategic planning program to a set of rural Wisconsin communities.
When is Extension Accepting Applications?
We are accepting applications through August 15, 2022. From the applications received, Extension and WEDC will select five communities to work with through a structured, yet flexible, strategic planning process aimed at helping rural Wisconsin. These pilot communities will be notified of acceptance no later than September 1, 2022. Pilot communities will work with Extension and WEDC upon acceptance through June 30, 2024.
Who can Apply?
This pilot program is open to rural places in Wisconsin including local communities, rural regions, rural counties, and tribal communities. Population size for pilot communities should fall between 1,000 and 7,500 people.
Why are Extension and WEDC Piloting this Initiative?
Extension and WEDC aim to understand the challenges for rural Wisconsin communities working on and executing community economic development plans. These efforts will provide valuable insight into establishing a process and pathway that other rural communities throughout Wisconsin can engage in as they develop and look to execute comprehensive community economic development planning in their community.