Intergovernmental Review Support

An Intergovernmental Review is required for any project, or action that is included in the New York State List of Eligible Federal Programs for the Intergovernmental Review Process, as issued by the NYS State Division of Budget.  A list of Federal Programs can be found in the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) found by clicking here.

Southern Tier 8 functions as an area-wide clearinghouse for all projects within the counties of Broome, Chenango, Cortland, Delaware, Otsego, Schoharie, Tioga and Tompkins.

When applying for funding, applicants should include a completed copy of the Standard 424 form which can be found here.

For further assistance, please contact our office at (607) 724-1327.

Water Quality Program & Geospatial Assistance

The Upper Susquehanna River Drainage Sub-Basin crosses all 8 counties in the Southern Tier 8 Region. Several bodies of water in the watershed have been identified as impaired and are located along portions of the Susquehanna River, Chenango River, Unadilla River, Park Creek, Goodyear Lake and Whitney Point Reservoir. In Broome County, the Whitney Point Reservoir and a portion of the lower Susquehanna River have been assessed as impaired and require the development of a Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL), or other restoration strategy. Two other drainage basins include the Mohawk and Delaware Rivers. The Mohawk River Drainage Basin covers most of Schoharie County, where Engleville Pond and Summit Lake have been identified as impaired. The Delaware River Basin crosses Delaware County where impaired water bodies include the Pepacton and Cannonsville Reservoirs and a portion of eastern Broome where Fly Pond and Deer Lake are impaired. The severity of water quality problems at these specified locations has been assessed and documented at a state level.

With assistance from the DEC, Southern Tier 8 works with County Water Quality Coordinating Committees (CWQCC) to take local action to address water quality problems and needs in each county to plan for water quality improvement programs and remediation efforts in impaired water bodies and protection of healthy water bodies across the region. Learn more about the Drinking Water Source Protection Program here

Southern Tier 8 also works with the Broome Tioga Stormwater Coalition to meet federal and state regulations.  Learn more about stormwater here

More Information

Upper Susquehanna Watershed
More Information

Mohawk Valley Watershed
More Information

Delaware Watershed
More Information

DEC’s list of water bodies of concern
More Information

EPA’s 2015 Stormwater Calculator
More Information

Request for DEC stream sampling
More Information

Sampling for Susquehanna Watersheds
More Information

Sampling for the Mohawk Valley Watersheds
More Information

Asset-Based Economic Development: Developing a regional Opportunity Zone Portfolio

The Regional Board Staff is working with each County Planning Director & Municipal Economic Developer to draft a portfolio of the 19 designated opportunity zones across the Southern Tier.  The Opportunity Exchange is assisting with this community economic development project.  For more information, see the resources below…


The Governance Project Toolkit for Maximizing Impact of Opportunity Zones
HUD Opportunity Zone Toolkit on “Best Practices and Case Studies” for OZs
The US Impact Investing Alliance (USIIA) Toolkit
LISC Opportunity Zone Playbook
Accelerator for America Investment Prospectus Guide
Real Estate Investing Basics
The Opportunity Exchange Economic Development Library
LISC Guide: Anchor Institutions’ Contribution to Small Business Ecosystems

Understanding Opportunity Zones

Urban Institute 2020 Assessment Report on Opportunity Zones
Novogradac Opportunity Zone Resources Page
IRS – FAQ on Opportunity Zones
CDFA Opportunity Zone Resource Center
White House Impact of Opportunity Zones Report

EIG Report on the Persistence of Poverty Report

Maps & Data

Opportunity Zone Maps
EIG’s Opportunity Zone Map: searchable by census tract
Opportunity Zone Tract List: Excel file with a list of census tracts that have been designated as Opportunity Zones.
EIG’s Opportunity Zones Activity Map
Informational Maps
Department of Transportation Map of Transportation Facilities near OZs
Center on Rural Innovation Maps on Rural Resources
Urban Institute Map of Debt in America
Impact Data
The Urban Institute – Investment and Social Change Scores
LOCUS National OZ Ranking Report
EIG’s Distressed Community Index
Policy Map’s Social Need Index
Center for Inclusive Growth OZ Inclusive Growth Score
Develop Opportunity Zones Index
OZ Rankings and Scores
The Urban Institute – Investment and Social Change Scores
LOCUS National OZ Ranking Report
The Opportunity Atlas: Neighborhood data on rising out of poverty

Policy Recommendations

These are primarily for cities and community developers.
PolicyLink Opportunity Zone Recommendations
How Cities Maximize Opportunity Zones – Policy Brief
Chan Zuckerberg Initiative on Opportunity Zones and Affordable Housing

Opportunity Fund Resources

Novogradac’s Opportunity Fund List
National Council of State Housing Agencies Opportunity Fund Directory


Impact Real Estate Investing Podcast, by the founder of Small Change
The Lost Art of small-scale development episode

Legislative History
Novogradac OZ Legislation History

Southern Tier 8 is working with Industry Building Blocks to develop an asset-based program for businesses across the region and with the help of  our County’s Economic Developers & County Planners, we are pursuing the goals developed in our region’s 2018 Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS).  This initiative brought forward the Industry Summit Platform to increase collaborative opportunities for all businesses across the region.

Learn more about the line-of-business industry data at Southern Tier Industry & Company Info.  Key Industry Clusters across the Southern Tier:

Established Industry Clusters

  1. Business & Professional Services
  2. Healthcare & Life Sciences
  3. Manufacturing Superclusters
  4. Agriculture & Food
  5. Financial Services
  6. Media, IT, AI & Communication
  7. Education
  8. Advanced Manufacturing
  9. Transportation Manufacturing
  10. Advanced Materials

Emerging Industry Clusters

  1. Waterfront Development
  2. Logistics & Transportation
  3. Transportation Services
  4. Paving Technologies & Services
  5. Wood & Wood Products
  6. Energy & Smart Energy Products
  7. Beer, Wine & Spirits
  8. Sports & Sports Related
  9. Culture & Entertainment
  10. Tourism

Resiliency Planning

Over the last few years, Southern Tier 8 was matched for several Department of Defense Innovative Readiness Training (IRT) programs that offered training programs for the military while providing health care and engineering assistance to residents in Chenango and Cortland counties. County Planning Departments, Greater Chenango Cares, the Chenango County Agricultural Society and Healthy Cortland were key partners in these projects and provided services valued at more than $4.8 million.

Southern Tier 8 is currently working with Delaware County to bring an IRT healthcare program in 2021.  Insight from past IRT events can be gained here. Learn about IRT benefits here.

Infrastructure Planning & Implementation


Why is Broadband infrastructure so challenging in the Southern Tier and presents such a long-term planning effort for our communities? Topography and Rural Character. Due to our Appalachian topography and rural population density of 83 people per square mile, the construction of broadband infrastructure continues to be a challenge for our rural communities. Where we have few homes, there is less revenue potential for internet and cell service providers. Our rolling hills and valleys also limit potential for long wireless broadcasts.

Since 2004, Southern Tier 8 has been raising awareness for the need for improved 911 and cell service and broadband infrastructure development across our rural, hilly region. ST8 has also written several implementation requests, including Southern Tier Network development and expansion. The Southern Tier Network is a local dark fiber solution and was developed to run long miles of dark fiber to encourage small internet service provider investments in our rural communities. Learn more at: 

Communities across the Southern Tier still face broadband limitations and internet access per school district can be explored HERE.  Learn more about the State’s initiative at the New New York State Broadband Program Office.

For a more complete understanding of the current broadband challenges in rural Upstate NY, please see the REPORT ON THE STATE OF BROADBAND ACCESS, with many thanks to Congressman Anthony Brindisi for offering this community development resource.

For an understanding of 5G technologies, please see an interesting article here.

In 2009, New York’s Office of Critical Infrastructure established the Broadband Program Office and in 2015, the $500 million “New” New York State Broadband Program was launched to build last-mile residential infrastructure across the state, now managed by Empire State Development. More information can be found at


Southern Tier 8 continues to support the I-86 Coalition, tasked with encouraging interstate highway designation. Southern Tier 8 serves on the Binghamton Metropolitan Transit Study (BMTS) and supports regional construction projects and trail developments. Learn more here:


In 2017, while Southern Tier 8 was drafting the organization’s 5-year plan, business leaders raised concerns with the continued delay of William’s natural gas “Constitution” pipeline as energy needs are not being met in communities across Chenango, Delaware & Otsego Counties, creating a significant obstacle for economic growth.

The organization took on the role of researching the use of natural gas and other fuels for both industrial and residential use in the area and discovered that the available information came up short. The raw data for energy usage and fuel type percentages was not available.  Recognizing the need for a multi-county assessment of energy infrastructure needs, Southern Tier 8 secured $150,000 from the Appalachian Regional Commission to draft a baseline document, identify the unique challenges & offer strategies for alternative energy solutions. Southern Tier 8 released an RFP inviting firms to complete the study in January of 2019. Interviews were conducted with the 3 finalists, and ultimately LaBella Associates’ of Rochester was selected to complete the work. LaBella was chosen based on its high community rating from the Steering Committee and impressive relationships with New York State, NYSEG and PSC.

This 1-year planning process was designed to satisfy the following:

  1. Provide regional private and public leaders with a baseline of available energy infrastructure and usage data plan for allocating resources to support
  2. Identify and encourage sustainable energy development initiatives and opportunities that will improve the economic progress of the 8-county region.

The Steering Committee invested numerous hours in gathering information, engaging stakeholders and prioritizing community projects that are ready  for development. On behalf of the Southern Tier 8 Regional Board, LaBella Associates planned to host Open Houses for the community in Norwich & Cortland, however, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, LaBella hosted a WebEx presentation to present the findings of its 8-County Regional Energy Infrastructure Assessment & Strategy, as linked below.  Participants had an opportunity to comment and ask questions online and submit written comments via email through April 7, 2020. Comments were taken into consideration and the final document is linked below.

Many thanks to the staff, Steering Committee & LaBella Associates for producing a document that defines the energy resources, needs and opportunities for communities across the Southern Tier.

Review Public Documents here:

1. March 30, 2020 Presentation slides here

2. March 30, 2020 Recorded Presentation here & the password is:  Mw73eUTK

3.  2020 Regional Energy Infrastructure Assessment here.

4. US Department of Energy Appalachian Energy & Petrochemical Renaissance Report June 2020, with contributions by the Appalachian Regional Commission here