Rural communities and small towns across the U.S. are interested in making smarter investments for their economic recovery. Communities have unequivocally shown that smart practices in housing, infrastructure and transportation will save local, state and federal government significant sums. Small businesses and family farms benefit from strategic local investments too, because smarter short-term decisions mean a stronger regional economy for the future.
The Partnership for Sustainable Communities – a collaboration between the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Department of Housing and Urban Development, and Department of Transportation – works to help communities achieve these goals. The Partnership along with the U.S. Department of Agriculture has released a new report on how the agencies are collaborating to support rural communities.
“Supporting Sustainable Rural Communities” (PDF) highlights how rural communities and small towns are using resources from these federal agencies to strengthen their economies, provide better quality of life to residents, and build on local assets such as traditional main streets, agricultural lands, and natural resources.
The report details how programs at all four agencies support environmentally and economically sustainable growth in rural places, and includes performance measures rural communities can use to target their investments. The report also includes 12 case studies of rural communities using federal resources to achieve their development and economic goals.
From Alabama to West Virginia, Maine to Minnesota, rural communities are interested in making smart investments that support regional economies. Smart practices in housing, infrastructure and transportation – like those promoted by the Partnership agencies and detailed in this report – can save money for local, state and federal governments alike.