Local Government Issues

FY 2018 EPA Brownfields Grant Application Guidelines Released

The FY 2018 application guidelines for EPA’s Brownfields Assessment, Revolving Loan Fund and Cleanup grants have been released by the Office of Land and Emergency Management. Proposals are due to EPA by November 16, 2017 at 11:59 p.m. Eastern time.

These federal grants are available for the assessment and cleanup of brownfield properties.

For assistance with applying for a FY 2018 Brownfields Grant, contact your regional EPA representative or the Region 5 Technical Assistance to Brownfield (TAB) provider, KSU. TAB can provide free review of your draft EPA Assessment and Cleanup proposals. Please give TAB a one-week heads-up that you will be sending a draft to review. It generally takes TAB a few days to get the proposals back to you. Please contact Blase Leven (785-532-0780) to reserve your spot.

To find out how to get a DNR letter of support and other useful information, visit the DNR Federal brownfield grants web page.

Pittsville, Edgerton receive DNR brownfield awards

MADISON – Two Wisconsin communities stand to benefit from Department of Natural Resources brownfields awards to assist with the investigation of historic contamination.

Pittsville and Edgerton received Wisconsin Assessment Monies (WAM) from the DNR for contractor services worth a combined $45,000. Administered by the DNR Remediation and Redevelopment Program, WAM awards provide communities with professional environmental site assessments of contaminated properties.

“The work will help the communities better understand the contaminated areas in question, leading to potential job growth, retention and economic development,” said Christine Haag, DNR brownfields section chief.

Continue reading “Pittsville, Edgerton receive DNR brownfield awards”

Community Redevelopment Toolbox

The latest version of ASTWMO’s Toolbox for Community Redevelopment, “A beginner’s guide to contaminated property redevelopment,” offers a five-step process to help local governments better understand the basic process of identification, assessment, investigation and cleanup.Clip Art

The Association of State and Territorial Solid Waste Management Officials, Inc., (ASTSWMO), is a national organization founded in 1974. Its mission is to enhance and promote effective state programs and to affect relevant national policies for waste and materials management, environmentally sustainable practices, and environmental restoration.

The toolbox and examples are not Wisconsin-specific, but include good, basic information for anyone interested in cleanup and redevelopment issues.

CDFA Brownfields Financing Webinar Hazardous to Healthy: Financing Solutions for Recovering Brownfields

Join CDFA, technical partners, and experienced brownfield communities for a discussion on the financial strategies that restored hazardous properties for healthy reuse on August 31 at 1:00 PM Central Time. This webcast is designed for professionals who work directly with brownfield sites as well as economic development finance professionals and communities interested in shaping programs to enhance redevelopment financing opportunities. Click here to confirm your participation and receive login information. Registration is free and open to all interested stakeholders.

Redevelopment Successes Detailed in Reports

Report Covers

The RR Program details the various activities undertaken and achieved throughout the year through the biannual Section 128(a) Report.

For nearly 15 years, the Remediation and Redevelopment Program has worked under a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to enhance state efforts with the cleanup and redevelopment of brownfields. As part of the agreement, the RR Program details the various activities undertaken and achieved throughout the year and makes those efforts available to the public through the biannual Section 128(a) Report. These reports can be found on the Brownfields Program webpage and we invite you to have a look. Recent reports detail redevelopment sites in Manitowoc and Madison, highlight video projects, recognize staff efforts, and recognize our external partners for helping guide program efforts.  

 

National TAB Webinar: The Basics of Site Remediation for Communities

Kansas State University, the New Jersey Institute of Technology and the Center for Creative Land Recycling will present an introductory webinar and remediation technologies. The webinar will take place on August 2, from 2:30-4:00 CDT.

During this webinar, you’ll learn about environmental cleanup technology, including the differences between remediation corridors versus single sites and how to work with the regulators, especially the state. This webinar will give you the tools to make informed decisions about your projects and remind you of special considerations to make while working on brownfield sites.

This webinar is geared for local and regional government officials, not-for-profit economic and community development organizations and anyone interested in learning about brownfield remediation.

The event is free, but registration required. For more information or help with registration contact Erica Rippe.

“When Life Hands You a Landfill” Webinar Recording Now Available

What to do with those pesky landfills? The Center for Creative Land Recycling presents an online recording of its recent webinar “When life hands you a landfill, make it into something better.”

The 60-minute video features experts from the field of brownfields redevelopment and covers a range of issues particular to working on landfill projects.

Wisconsin Communities Receive $1.8M in EPA Brownfields Awards for FY17

Money stack clip artA handful of Wisconsin communities, counties and entities will put to use recent brownfields awards from the US EPA. The awards are for assessment or cleanup activities and are part of the 279 awards given to communities across the nation, totaling $56.8 million.

These Assessment and Cleanup Grants, in Wisconsin and elsewhere, will aid under-served communities through the assessment and cleanup of abandoned industrial and commercial properties and expand the ability of communities to recycle vacant and abandoned properties for new, productive reuses.

Recipient Assessment / Cleanup Award Amount
Blugold Real Estate Foundation, Inc. (Eau Claire) Cleanup $200,000
Blugold Real Estate Foundation, Inc. (Eau Claire) Cleanup $200,000
Green Bay Assessment $300,000
Sheboygan County Assessment $300,000
Washington County Assessment $600,000
Wauwatosa Assessment $200,000

The US EPA has a list of all FY17 grants selected for funding, as well as a searchable database and fact sheets of all selected applicants.

Green Team Assistance for Local Governments

Green Team Meeting

The DNR’s “Green Team” meetings bring important parties together to discuss issues, answer key questions and give everyone a better understanding of the project.

Contaminated land often raises liability concerns, technical issues and funding questions. The DNR’s “Green Team” meetings bring important parties in the cleanup and redevelopment process together to discuss issues, answer key questions and give everyone a better understanding of the project at hand. DNR staff are available to discuss liability protections, regulatory processes and financial assistance available for the investigation, remediation and redevelopment of a contaminated property.

Green Team meetings are an effective and efficient way for local governments and others to evaluate options, plan for and work through a brownfield project. Many successful brownfield redevelopment projects in Wisconsin start with a local Green Team meeting. Funding from the EPA helps make this possible.

DNR staff participate in more than 100 Green Team meetings annually. Additional information, including a list of meetings held so far this year, can be found in the Section 128(a) Grant Mid-Year Report.

To learn more about Green Team meetings in general, visit the RR Program’s Green Team assistance web page.

Certificate of Completion Issued for Large Madison Brownfield

Sign at Royster Clark Property with contact information and list of financial supporters.

The Royster Clark project benefited from several financial incentives including the DNR’s Ready for Reuse program.

After more than 200 environmental reports and approvals over the course of ten years, the Wisconsin DNR issued a final Certificate of Completion for the former Royster-Clark facility in Madison. The Certificate of Completion was issued in March 2017 when the Wisconsin DNR approved the final investigation and remedial action and provided a liability exemption through the Voluntary Party Liability Exemption (VPLE) program.

The 27 acre Royster-Clark facility was once a fertilizer factory operating from 1952 until it closed in 2006. In 2011, Ruedebusch Development and Construction (RDC), a Madison-based real estate developer, purchased the property and took on the task of cleanup and redevelopment of the unique project.

The cleanup included contamination from leaking underground storage tanks and the excavation of more than 50,000 tons of nitrogen-contaminated soil removed from the site. The property went through extensive meetings, planning and approvals from the neighborhood association and the city of Madison. The redevelopment, some of which is already complete, includes affordable housing, market rate apartments, and commercial development, including a new public library branch and potential grocery store. The project also includes 50+ lots ready for single family homes.

The cleanup project benefited from several financial incentives including the Wisconsin DNR’s Ready for Reuse program, which is funded through a RLF brownfields grant from the EPA, Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation grants, and funding from the city of Madison.