BCD Council of GovernmentsSeptember 2012
The BCDCOG in brief
Welcome to the BCD Council of Governments digital newsletter. This newsletter is published once a month to bring you highlights of projects and activities being undertaken at the agency. Should you have any questions or would like to request additional information, please do not hesitate to contact us.

ACHIEVE For Healthy Communities

From February 2010- September 2012, the City of North Charleston coordinated with area stakeholders in Action Communities for Health, Innovation, and Environmental Change (ACHIEVE), with funding provided by the National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO.) Local efforts focused on developing community leadership to create health policy, systems, and environmental change strategies that help prevent or manage health-risk factors for chronic disease and promote healthy eating and active living. The BCDCOG participated in this ongoing project by providing transportation and GIS data, including assistance in the development of a transportation guide to facilitate citizens' use of public transportation to get to a grocery store.


City of Hanahan Applies for Village Renaissance Grant


The BCD Council of Governments staff recently assisted the City of Hanahan in completing an application for funding under the South Carolina Department of Commerce (SCDOC) Village Renaissance Program. This 3-phase program is primarily designed to assist in the development of sustainable communities through revitalization of in-town residential neighborhoods. A collaborative effort of the City of Hanahan Council and COG staff, several meetings were held while developing the funding application to gauge interest and identify issues and needs. In addition, City and COG staff held  public hearings to solicit public input regarding community needs and comments concerning the Community Development Block Grant funding application. If awarded, the grant will fund phase 1, a comprehensive neighborhood revitalization plan and needs assessment of the Charleston Farms Neighborhood. The Plan will identify and prioritize areas in need of improvement, such as housing conditions, land use, safety, and infrastructure and provision of public facilities/services. The City should know by December 31, 2012 if they have been awarded the grant.


BCDCOG Board of Directors Adopts Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS)


The Berkeley-Charleston-Dorchester Council of Governments Board of Directors approved a five year Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS) at its last meeting after a 30-day comment period. The CEDS is a regional strategy which reflects local economic development needs/priorities and recommends a regional approach to achieving sustainable economic development.

Organizations such as the Berkeley-Charleston-Dorchester Council of Governments (BCDCOG) are required to have a CEDS in order to: qualify for assistance through the US Economic Development Administration (EDA) in the form of public works and economic adjustment grants; qualify to be designated by the EDA as an Economic Development District (EDD) thus opening the door for us to apply for EDA grants; and be used as a regional strategy to coordinate economic development efforts.


The Berkeley-Charleston-Dorchester Region's CEDS is a compilation of the steadfast efforts to further economic development such as the Charleston Regional Development Alliance's Opportunity Next and 2010 and 2011 Regional Economic Scorecards, the Trident Workforce Investment Board Five Year Strategic Plan, and the Berkeley-Charleston-Dorchester Council of Governments' soon to be completed OurRegion OurPlan.


The Region's CEDS will now be submitted to the regional office of the Economic Development Administration in Atlanta, GA for review and approval.

Georgia-Lina Bike Summit to be held

The GEORGIA-LINA BIKE SUMMIT will be held in Athens, Ga. on October 19-21, 2012. The event is a combined South Carolina and Georgia conference for planners, transportation officials, bicycle advocates, retailers, elected leaders, and anyone interested in seeing a more bicycle friendly southeast. The one-day conference will include training on Safety Campaigns in Rural Communities, Bike Share Programs. Economic Benefits of   Bicycling, Women's Cycling Forum, Bicycle Network Planning for Universities, Partnerships with Off-Road Cycling Advocates, and Safe Routes to School. There will also be area bicycle rides and a bus tour of the North Augusta East Coast Greenway. For more information, go to http://georgiabikes.org/index.php/events/gbs12-reg 


New Federal Transportation Bill: MAP-21

On July 6, 2012, President Obama signed into law P.L. 112-141, the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (MAP-21) transportation bill which replaces the previous SAFETEA-LU bill.   Funding surface transportation programs at over $105 billion for fiscal years 2013 and 2014, MAP-21 is the first long-term highway authorization enacted since 2005. MAP-21 will provide needed transportation funds by consolidating the number of federal programs by two-thirds from nearly 90 programs to less than 30.


MAP-21 also creates a performance-based multimodal program to improve safety, maintain infrastructure condition, reduce traffic congestion, improve efficiency of the system and freight movement, protect the environment, and reduce delays in project delivery. The effective date for most highway provisions in MAP-21, both funding and changes to policy, is October 1, 2012. For more information on MAP-21, go to the Federal Highway Administration site http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/MAP21/ and the Federal Transit Administration site at http://www.fta.dot.gov/map21/.


In This Issue
City of Hanahan Applies for Village Renaissance Grant
BCDCOG Board of Directors Adopts CEDS
Georgia-Lina Bike Summit to be held
Quick Links

 AASHTO Bike Guide Webinar


Hosted by the Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center and Toole Design Group


August-October 2012 (Seven Parts)




Planner, engineers, policy makers and advocates can register for this free seven part webinar series to obtain information on the recent updates to the American Association of State Highway Transportation Official's (AASHTO) Guide for the Development of Bicycle Facilities. The guide was updated in June for the first time in 13 years and serves as a key resource for creating and designing bicycle facilities in the U.S. The series will provide an overview of the elements of on-road bicycle facility design and will include sessions that focus on bike lanes, shared use paths, shared lanes (unmarked and marked), paved shoulders and bicycle boulevards.


APA Continuing Education Webcasts to be held


The BCDCOG will continue to broadcast APA sponsored webcasts that meet requirements for required Continuing Education Credits. RSVP's are not required, but are appreciated by contacting Kathryn Basha. The next webcast will be on September 28th from 1pm-2:30pm. The topic will be Housing and Transportation for the Boomers and Beyond. A webcast will also be offered on October 19th from 1pm-2:30pm entitled A Tale of Three City Pairs: Regional Economic Growth and Rail Transit Investments.


 The BCDCOG will also host two 6-hour orientation training sessions in late October/early November for new Board or Commission members to meet requirements of the SC Planning Enabling Act. Please contact Kathryn Basha if you are interested in attending. This will assist us in determining the location for these training sessions.

BCDCOG Revolving Loan Can Assist Your Business


We currently have funds to loan. The RLF's primary goal is job creation and retention. It is designed to assist businesses whose projects will improve the tri-county economy. Eligible uses for loans include the purchase of equipment and land, and the improvement of real estate and building facilities. Contact us today for more information.