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Austin, TX 78744

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In the News: News from August 2017

CAPCOG provides local input for state freight network

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Expansion of the freight network into rural areas could increase traffic safety and connectivity throughout the ten-county region by making roadway projects more attractive to receive state and federal funding. With the state currently reviewing its freight network plan, CAPCOG’s Planning and Economic Development staff provided the state with local input about major rural thoroughfares, to ensure they can accurately be represented.

Freight traffic is growing on many roadways in the rural portions of the region as companies transport goods go or through the northern, central and southern parts of the metropolitan area. To help reflect that reality, CAPCOG collected a variety of local input about growth and use of rural thoroughfares during a series of planning meetings and public forums. The majority of the collected information from those forums are being placed into rural transportation planning documents, but the freight input also was provided to Texas Department of Transportation as part of its freight planning process.

> Learn about the CAPCOG Planning and Economic Development Division.

CAPCOG develops workforce education center database

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

CAPCOG and the Capital Area Economic Development District (CAEDD) is compiling a workforce education center database to help the region explore opportunities related to workforce development and answer questions about the relationships between training providers and other regional trends, statistics and demographics.

“Our affordability and economic development issues are closely tied to workforce education,” said Chris Schreck, CAPCOG Planning and Economic Development director. “Doing this project links workforce development with other factors. It focuses on getting good information pulled together and examining where opportunity might exist.”

A map shows apprenticeship programs in relation to job availability in the region.

The goal is to create a comprehensive catalogue of workforce training information that can be represented spatially, so it is easier to see how current training systems align with accessibility, concentrations of jobs, and target populations. The database could be used by policy makers to guide future planning and/or it could become public facing which also would allow residents to explore their own career opportunities based on their circumstances and interests.

“The CAEDD wants to engage stakeholders that are working on the same economic development and workforce development issues and make sure they have this data,” Schreck said. “With broad interest and engagement around expanding opportunities for skills development in the Capital Area, I’m excited about where this project may go.” CAPCOG will present the database to the CAEDD in August, which will help direct the project to its next stage.

Identification of the workforce database comes from the region’s five-year economic development plan, also known as the Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS), which identifies workforce development as one of four key elements in the action plan. CAPCOG is a designated Economic Development District by the Economic Development Administration, US Department of Commerce.

> Learn more about the CAPCOG Planning and Economic Development Division.

August, September temps could bring air pollution risk

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Average temperatures in the Austin area are higher than they have been in the last 17 years according to data collected by the National Weather Service, and higher temperatures can also bring higher levels of ozone air pollution. Half-way through the 2017 ozone season, the CAPCOG ten-county region already had three days when ground-level ozone has reached levels considered unhealthy for children, seniors, adults with asthma, and people who work outdoors, compared to just one day in 2016. There also has been an additional 66 days when ozone has reached “moderate” levels that can affect especially sensitive people.

It’s important for the region’s residents to realize August and September tend to be the worst months for air pollution in the region. They can help “Be Air Aware” by driving less, conserving energy, and checking the air quality forecast each day. Residents can better understand how their day-to-day activities affect air quality, and how changes in those activities can improve air quality by visiting

> Visit

CAPCOG is challenging area residents to calculate their emissions and make a commitment to take action to help keep our air clean.

> Learn about the CAPCOG Air Quality Program.

Striking a Balance lets caregivers take home experiences

Monday, August 14, 2017

CAPCOG’s Area Agency on Aging of the Capital Area (AAACAP) and AGE of Central Texas bring together family caregivers from around the region to learn how to better care for themselves and loved ones during the Striking a Balance Conference. The 16th annual conference will be held from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 26 at DoubleTree by Hilton Austin; with an anticipated attendance of 200 caregivers, the attendees will be their own greatest resources.Jane Meier Hamilton, CEO and founder of Partners on the Path

> Register for Striking a Balance 2017.

“The real strength of this event is the opportunity to communicate with other caregivers, and every year I see a table of caregivers that doesn’t want to leave because they are sharing their experiences,” said Patty Bordie, AAACAP director. “Sharing the caregiving experience validates feelings, emotions, thoughts, and lets people know they are not alone.”

Peer support is often more believable than what one learns from books or classes. Situations peers face may be similar so sharing experiences can lead to solving problems. Knowing the experience of caregiving is one of the many reasons Jane Meier Hamilton, CEO and founder of Partners on the Path, was selected to deliver the conference’s keynote address, “Why am I So Stressed?” and lead two breakout sessions. Hamilton, a 40-year nurse and 20-year family caregiver, runs Partners on the Path which helps professional and family caregivers preserve their health, well-being and capacity to care through research-based resources offered online, in-print and in-person. “There is no boundary in being a caregiver when it is your husband, your parents or your child, unlike when you are a nurse and can go home at the end of the day,” Hamilton said. “When it is your loved one, it is in your heart and in your mind all the time. The talks I do come out of my own struggle to stay healthy and stay resilient.”

Hamilton’s breakout sessions will discuss practical steps to self-care and establishing resiliency in oneself as a caregiver. Other breakout session topics include: addressing difficult behaviors associated with dementia, discussing driving with older family members, and financing long-term care. The conference includes opportunities to connect with community based organizations and service providers with expertise in caregiver support, education, training, in-home and long-term care services.

> Learn more about AGE of Central Texas.
> Read about AAACAP.

AGE’s Austin Adult Day Health Center will offer free off-site respite by reservation. Call 512-600-9275 to reserve.

CAPCOG seeks nominations for 2017 Air Central Texas Awards

Thursday, August 10, 2017

CAPCOG is soliciting nominations for the 2017 Air Central Texas Awards that recognize activities by organizations and individuals that have made significant contributions to regional air quality and promote future action on the part of the community to support the goals of the region’s ongoing air quality planning efforts. Nominations will be accepted until 5 p.m., Friday, Sept. 22.

The 2017 awards will mark the second year CAPCOG has held the award ceremony, and it is excited to introduce a new category to highlight the role the media plays in communicating air quality issues to the public, the Air Central Texas Media Award. The awards are a great way to honor those who have made significant differences in Central Texas’ air quality. CAPCOG wants to ensure this effort is a success, so please consider submitting at least one nomination for each of the following categories:

  • Air Central Texas Public Sector Award - recognizes action in the public sector that has helped improve/protect regional air quality during the past year.
  • Air Central Texas Private/Non-Profit Sector Award - recognizes action in the private or nonprofit sectors that has helped improve/protect regional air quality during the past year.
  • Air Central Texas Media Award - recognizes outstanding media coverage — TV, print, radio, or digital — of air quality issues in the region.
  • Bill Gill Central Texas Air Quality Leadership Award - recognizes an individual who has had a significant and lasting impact on Central Texas air quality.

> Review award guidelines and submit a nomination form.
> Contact Anton Cox, CAPCOG Air Quality Program specialist, with questions or concerns.

CAPCOG plans to hold an award ceremony in November to announce and celebrate the 2017 nominees and winners.

> Read more about the CAPCOG Air Quality Program.

Advocacy Day to strengthen ADRC partnerships, network

Tuesday, August 08, 2017

The Aging and Disability Resource Center (ADRC) of the Capital Area will host its first Advocacy Day and Resource Fair, an educational workshop for its steering committee members and community partners to explore using advocacy as a tool to increase the ADRC network’s capacity. The workshop will be from 8 a.m. to noon, Aug. 17 at the JJ Pickle Research Center’s Commons Learning Center.

“This workshop will provide increased awareness about the needs of individuals with disabilities and the importance of person-centered support,” said Patty Bordie, CAPCOG Area Agency on Aging of the Capital Area director who oversees the ADRC program. “In addition, steering committee partners will have the opportunity to highlight their services and make new connections to a broader group of professional stakeholders.”

ADRC agency partners contribute to a “No Wrong Door” system for consumers seeking long-term services and supports in the CAPCOG region. The ADRC coordinates these services across aging and disability networks to increase efficiencies and reduce duplication. This workshop is designed to further strengthen the bonds between those agencies and streamline an individual’s connection to services with a quality consumer experience.

> Parnters or potential partners RSVP for the workshop.
> Learn more about the ADRC.

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