The Golden LEAF Board awarded three projects totaling $445,582 in Open Grants Program funding. These projects will support workforce preparedness and job creation and economic investment in Carteret, Beaufort, and Wayne counties.
- $199,300 to North Carolina Coastal Federation to support the creation of a shared use aquaculture hub facility in Carteret County that would provide new and existing oyster and clam growers improved access to the water, product refrigeration, storage, grading, and loading equipment, and an aggregation site for distributors, with the goals of creating high-quality jobs and increasing income for shellfish growers.
- $46,575 to Pungo Christian Academy to support equipment and supplies to expand PCA’s FFA program to include welding and auto mechanics in addition to its existing horticulture and carpentry offerings. PCA students can participate in the Career and College Promise program at Beaufort County Community College, which has indicated its support for the project.
- $199,706.78 to University of Mount Olive for simulation equipment to support development of a BSN program that will train 100 RNs each year for positions within Wayne and surrounding counties.
The Golden LEAF Board awarded $1,382,782.18 to MCNC to be used as matching funds in an application MCNC will make for federal broadband funding. If federal funds are secured, MCNC plans to build 127 miles of broadband fiber between Sanford and Jacksonville—including Harnett, Lee, Onslow, Duplin, Cumberland, and Sampson counties—that would directly serve 20 community anchor institutions and pass within three miles of 195 additional community anchor institutions.
Additionally, the N.C. Rural Center was awarded $127,534 by the Golden LEAF Board to administer the Rural Internship Initiative for the Golden LEAF Scholarship Program. The N.C. Rural Center assists with the outreach and promotion, manages selection of the interns, reviews internship sites to ensure alignment with the student’s course of study and the student’s intent to return to rural N.C., and provides oversight and engagement with the interns and internship sites during the summer.
The Golden LEAF Foundation was appropriated $25 million from the State of North Carolina for a Flood Mitigation Program. The Flood Mitigation Program will award funding up to $250,000 per project. Funds may only be awarded to units of local government.
The Golden LEAF Board awarded $1,365,000 in funding to seven projects through the Flood Mitigation Program in Beaufort, Brunswick, Sampson, Perquimans, Lenoir, Granville, and Columbus counties.
- $225,000 to the Town of Aurora to create a maintenance plan and schedule for all the ditches and tributaries within the town’s jurisdiction, in an effort to mitigate areas of frequent flooding during heavy rainfall events.
- $250,000 to the City of Boiling Spring Lakes to install stormwater infrastructure along the areas of Holly, Walnut, and Redwood roads in an effort to mitigate flooding the city experiences several times a year along those roads. In 2014, A 2014 preliminary engineering report determined optimal solutions to reduce flooding in the area and a 2021 stormwater management master plan determined this project as a priority.
- $250,000 to the City of Clinton to reroute the existing drainage system along Weeks Street to mitigate frequent flooding along the road and nearby Highway 24.
- $90,000 to the Town of Hertford to collect field data, perform modeling of existing watersheds, map the location and condition of stormwater assets, and develop and prioritize concept plans to address flooded streets that occur during heavy rain events that prevent access to public and private property and create high inflows at the wastewater treatment facility due to inflow and infiltration.
- $250,000 to the City of Kinston to develop a plan for flood mitigation solutions through review of existing data sources, collection of additional data from field surveys, update of existing models, etc. to address flooding along Adkin Branch which restricts residents from accessing emergency services and nearby medical offices.
- $125,000 to the City of Oxford to develop concept plans—from mapping stormwater infrastructure and modeling existing watersheds along sub-basins west and parallel to College Street and MLK Jr. Avenue—to address flooding that occurs throughout the city during heavy, unnamed, non-tropical rain events and that restricts public works staff from accessing critical infrastructure, specifically at the wastewater treatment plant.
- $175,000 to the Town of Tabor City to install infrastructure to enclose the ditch that runs perpendicular to Hickman Road that will improve drainage to eliminate frequent and prolonged flooding that occurs in the southern part of town during heavy rain events.
Since 1999, Golden LEAF has funded 2,027 projects totaling $1.19 billion supporting the mission of advancing economic opportunity in North Carolina’s rural, tobacco-dependent, and economically distressed communities.