, Corbin, KY

Local News

December 11, 2013

Corbin 1 of 4 grant winners

$250K awarded through Livable Communities program

CORBIN — By John L. Ross / Staff Writer

You and Me Coffee and Tea in downtown Corbin was a sea of local, regional, state and federal representatives Tuesday afternoon.

The purpose?

To spread a little good cheer to the community by announcing the Corbin area was one of four designees nationwide to receive a chunk of $250,000 in grant funds.

The Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC), the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and the  U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) awarded technical assistance and implementation support through the $250,000 Livable Communities program.

Sandi Curd, the chairwoman for the Whitley County Farmers’ Market, said the county’s farmer’s market “had a wonderful year” and were able to open “a third venue in Corbin.”

“But we have big dreams — big dreams for a year-round market,” Curd said.

And with these grant funds — that dream is one step closer to reality.

ARC Federal Co-chair Earl F. Gohl spoke to the group of about 35 Tuesday about the grant monies.

“These four communities (including Corbin,) will receive technical assistance to help support the work they try to do,” Gohl said, adding that later a smaller grant for project implementation may be available.

“As (the farmers’ market) expands, it will strengthen the local economy,” he said. “And (it) will really help not only support the growers but also the downtown (area).”

The assistance and support will help these communities improve their livability by promoting economic development while safeguarding the natural environment.  

The 2013 program focuses on developing local food systems as a means of revitalizing traditional downtowns and promoting economic diversification. Selected communities drew on the help of their local development districts or their local university or community college to submit their winning applications.

Through the Livable Communities program, a team of small town development experts will work with each community to develop achievable plans for the local production, distribution, and consumption of healthful foods. The plans will support reinvigoration of downtowns and traditional neighborhoods in a variety of ways, including locating farmers’ markets or food hubs in “Main Street” areas.

An example would be the newest of three summer farmer’s markets set up in downtown Corbin.

“There is a growing momentum for the idea of integrating local food systems into rural economic revitalization efforts,” said USDA Acting Under Secretary for Rural Development Doug O’Brien. “Local foods are a critical component of creating stronger, healthier communities. These projects, along with the Livable Communities Partnership between EPA, USDA and ARC, show how innovation and cooperation are absolutely essential to successful community development. “

EPA Agriculture Adviser to the Administrator Sarah Bittleman was also on hand Tuesday to promote the grant monies.

“It’s exciting that so many Appalachian communities have a renewed interest in revitalizing their downtowns by promoting local food systems,” Bittleman said. “Focusing development in downtowns and existing neighborhoods is good for the natural environment and human health because it helps preserve rural lands and makes it easier for people to walk, bicycle, or drive shorter distances to their destinations.”

The goal for the EPA is the promotion of healthy people in a healthy environment, Bittleman said.

“We want to create healthier people and create a healthier environment,” she said. “It’s our bread and butter that we try to strive for every day — (we’re) thrilled to be a part of this process.”

O’Brien agreed. “We support that vision,” he said. “Government is at its best when it’s led by you.”

They explained that Corbin was selected for a project to expand its seasonal outdoor market into a year-round local food network hub in downtown Corbin.

Whitley County Farmers’ Market is a small market of about 30 vendors in a mainly rural county that includes the cities of Williamsburg and Corbin. It has achieved steady growth over the seven years of its existence.

However, to expand, the Farmers’ Market must develop ways to market local foods not only to individuals and families during the summer, but also to institutions and businesses in the county, such as hospitals, nursing homes, schools, state parks, and restaurants year-round. This project will help meet the technical and organizational challenges associated with this expansion.

Also on hand to hear the news was Gerry Roll, with the Appalachian Funders Network.

She said this would help throughout the Appalachian region, “and lift our community out of the poverty this area is known for.”

“People make (these things) happen — money makes it happen faster,” Roll said.

Gohl said the grant funds will be approximately $18,000-$25,000.

Curd explained the next step is to prepare a business plan — the grant monies will cover the expenses associated with preparing that plan.

Text Only
Local News
  • Couple pleads not guilty to abuse

    A Knox County couple facing charges in connection with second-degree burns on a child’s leg pleaded not guilty Tuesday morning during their preliminary hearings.
    Tyrone L. Person, 22, of Corbin, and Sierra Shepherd, 21, of Flat Lick, appeared before Judge John Chappell in Knox County District Court, according to a court official.

    July 23, 2014

  • Evaluation of Williamsburg Superintendent postponed

    An executive session to discuss and evaluate Williamsburg Independent Schools Superintendent Denny Byrd was slated for Tuesday night’s regular meeting — but an absence of one member postponed those plans.

    July 23, 2014

  • 0723 Capt. Coy Wilson, Harrison Creech & mom Samantha FOR WEB.jpg Heroes For A Day

    This boy likes to touch a truck — or in this case, the Corbin Police Department’s K9 Vehicle that was one of over 20 trucks, cars, boats, a helicopter and other vehicles stationed Tuesday at Corbin’s Rotary Park for the Sixth Annual “Touch A Truck” event.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • NIBROC: Just Lose It finalists announced

    The 20 finalists who will move on to the 4th Annual NIBROC: Just Lose It weight loss competition have been announced.

    July 23, 2014

  • NIBROC releases Kids Activities schedule

    We’re just over two weeks away from the 62nd Annual NIBROC Festival, and now, the schedule of kids activities for the fest is set in stone.

    July 23, 2014

  • Tri-County water treatment plants exceed quality standards

    Thirsty? If so, the Tri-County has some good water to offer to quench that thirst — that’s according to the Kentucky Energy and Environment Cabinet, which announced that 61 drinking water treatment plants across the state consistently produced drinking water last year that exceeded state and federal water quality standards.

    July 23, 2014

  • Corbin woman appointed to Ky. Board of Education

    A former Corbin Board of Education member has been appointed to the Kentucky Board of Education.

    July 23, 2014

  • POLICE ROUNDUP: Man admits to having sex with minor

    London City Police arrested a man Monday for having sexual relations with a minor, according to London City Police Chief Derek House.

    July 23, 2014

  • TODAY'S HEADLINES — July 23, 2014

    Couple pleads not guilty to abuse

    W’burg Supt. evaluation postponed

    NIBROC: Just Lose It finalists announced

    NIBROC releases Kids Activities schedule

    Corbin woman appointed to Ky. Board of Education

    Tri-County water treatment plants exceed quality standards

    Man admits to having sex with minor

    July 23, 2014

  • 0722 Mike Corey & David Thompson FOR WEB.jpg David Thompson to run again

    The mayor’s race in Barbourville will have a familiar name on the November ballot.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

Front page
Featured Ads
AP Video
Six Indicted in StubHub Hacking Scheme Former NTSB Official: FAA Ban 'prudent' EPA Gets Hip With Kardashian Tweet Bodies of MH17 Victims Arrive in the Netherlands Biden Decries Voting Restrictions in NAACP Talk Broncos Owner Steps Down Due to Alzheimer's US, UN Push Shuttle Diplomacy in Mideast Trump: DC Hotel Will Be Among World's Best Plane Crashes in Taiwan, Dozens Feared Dead Republicans Hold a Hearing on IRS Lost Emails Raw: Mourners Gather As MH17 Bodies Transported Robot Parking Valet Creates Stress-free Travel Raw: Fight Breaks Out in Ukraine Parliament Disabled Veterans Memorial Nearing Completion Last Mass Lynching in U.S. Remains Unsolved Home-sharing Programs Help Seniors Ex-NYC Mayor: US Should Allow Flights to Israel
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter