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Fact Sheet

February 2009


Brownfields Job Training Grants Program

INTRODUCTION

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has defined a brownfield site as “real property, the expansion, redevelopment, or reuse of which may be complicated by the presence or potential presence of a hazardous substance, pollutant, or contaminant….”  The EPA Region 7 Brownfields Job Training staff is engaged in working with local communities and other stakeholders to provide information and technical assistance, and to establish green brownfields job training opportunities throughout the four-state area.

JOB TRAINING GRANT OPPORTUNITIES

Job Training grants are for a two-year funding period, and provide up to $200,000 to fund job training in environmental fields for individuals who have been negatively impacted by brownfields in their neighborhoods. Eligible applicants include either eligible governmental entities or eligible nonprofit organizations. Some public and private educational facilities may also be eligible. Generally, job training grant applicants must be located within or near a brownfields grant community.

Eligible entities must propose to serve a community that currently receives, or has received, financial assistance (federal, state or tribal) for brownfields assessment, revolving loan fund, or cleanup, site-specific response program work. For a complete listing of existing EPA-funded brownfields grant areas, please visit: http://www.epa.gov/brownfields/plocat.htm.

EPA's Brownfields Program is an organized commitment to help communities revitalize brownfield properties both environmentally and economically, mitigate potential health risks, and restore economic vitality to areas where brownfields exist. Successful cleanup and redevelopment of brownfields are proof that economic development and environmental protection can indeed coexist.

PUBLIC PARTICIPATION

A critical part of EPA's efforts to encourage assessment and cleanup of brownfields is participation by affected residents. In addition, EPA works to ensure that disadvantaged residents do not bear a disproportionate burden of the effects of environmental contamination. To help residents take advantage of jobs created by the assessment and clean up of brownfields, EPA initiated the Brownfields Job Training Grants Program.

BACKGROUND

In the early 1990s, stakeholders expressed concerns to EPA that more than 600,000 properties that were once used for industrial, manufacturing, or other commercial uses were lying abandoned or underused due to the actual or perceived presence of contamination.

In 1994, EPA responded to the brownfields problem with an approach that is locally based, encourages strong public-private partnerships, and promotes innovative and creative ways to assess, clean up, and redevelop brownfield sites. This approach empowers state, tribal, and local environmental and economic development
officials to oversee brownfield activities. It also encourages implementing local solutions to local
problems. EPA has provided funding to create local environmental job training programs to ensure that the economic benefits derived from brownfields cleanup and revitalization efforts remain in local neighborhoods.

The Small Business Liability Relief and Brownfields Revitalization Act (“Brownfields Law” or “the Law,” P.L. 107-118) authorizes EPA to fund training to facilitate assessment, remediation, or preparation of brownfield sites. In 2002, the Brownfields Law authorized funding for a national Brownfields Job Training Grants Program which incorporated many of the goals and objectives for job training grants.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

If you have questions about the Region 7 Brownfields Job Training Grants Program, or need additional information, please contact:

Ina Square
Environmental Protection Agency
Brownfields Job Training Coordinator
901 N. 5th Street
Kansas City, Kansas 66101
Phone: 913-551-7357 or Toll free: 800-223-0425
square.ina@epa.gov


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