Iowa Leadership Exchange
The Rural Leadership Exchange is an educational event held to bolster existing rural leadership programs and support a statewide network of program leaders.
The Center for Rural Revitalization, housed within the Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA), is responsible for the day-to-day operations of the Empower Rural Iowa (ERI) initiative, implementing ERI task force recommendations, acting as a liaison to rural communities and helping small communities access programs that support rural areas.
The Governor’s ERI initiative was created by executive order in 2018. It is a partnership with the Iowa Rural Development Council (IRDC) and co-chaired by Lt. Governor Adam Gregg and IRDC Chair Sandy Ehrig. The Empower Rural Iowa Act also created three task forces, which develop recommendations for Gov. Kim Reynolds in advance of each legislative session:
IEDA’s community development programs provide support for downtown development projects. For more information on best practices and resources for revitalizing rural communities, visit the Iowa Rural Development Council. For updates on ERI meetings and resources, follow Empower Rural Iowa on Facebook and Twitter.
Rural Child Care Market Study Program
The Rural Child Care Market Study Grant program seeks to support the use of data and analysis by rural communities to determine the specific needs and solutions for their area.
Rural Return Program
The Rural Return Grant program seeks to support creative programming that attracts new residents to move and/or work in rural communities.
Rural Housing Assessment Grant Program
The Rural Housing Assessment Grant program supports the use of publicly available, online information through the “Profile of Iowa” tool and rural community efforts to interpret publicly available hard data to implement changes through development codes, local ordinances and housing incentives specific to individual community needs.
The Rural Innovation Grant program supports creative, non-traditional ideas that focus on current issues and challenges faced by rural communities associated with the themes of community investment, growth and connection.
The Rural Leadership Grant program provides training, mentorship and funding to rural communities and regions initiating leadership programs.
Four competitive programs available for rural communities under 20,000
39 applicants awarded a total of $97,500,000 for broadband infrastructure as part of the latest Empower Rural Iowa Broadband Grant Program