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ArkLaTex City Gets Big Bucks From EPA To Keep Clean

The city of Texarkana, Texas, will receive a $900,000 brownfields revolving loan fund grant from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).  The grant will be used to capitalize a revolving loan fund from which the city of Texarkana will provide loans and subgrants to support cleanup activities for sites contaminated with hazardous substances and petroleum. 

The revolving fund program will establish a sustainable source of cleanup funds focused on Texarkana’s Targeted Brownfields Area, consisting of 200 acres and 200 properties in the Historical Downtown and 7th Street Corridor that are contaminated or potentially contaminated with hazardous substances and petroleum.  Brownfields redevelopment in Texarkana will expand economic opportunity and address vacancy and decaying facilities that have caused an out-migration of businesses and homeowners from the area.

There are an estimated 450,000 abandoned and contaminated waste sites in America.  In 2011, the EPA’s brownfields program leveraged 6,447 jobs and $2.14 billion in cleanup and redevelopment funds.  Since its inception, the EPA’s brownfields investments have leveraged more than $18.3 billion in cleanup and redevelopment funding from a variety of public and private sources that have resulted in approximately 75,500 jobs.  More than 18,000 properties have been assessed, and over 700 properties have been cleaned up. Brownfields grants also target under-served and low income neighborhoods – places where environmental cleanups and new jobs are most needed.

The EPA’s Brownfields Program empowers states, communities, and other stakeholders to work together to prevent, assess, safely clean up, and sustainably reuse brownfields.  A brownfield site is 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.  In 2002, the Small Business Liability Relief and Brownfields Revitalization Act was passed to help states and communities around the country clean up and revitalize brownfields sites.  Under this law, EPA provides financial assistance to eligible applicants through four competitive grant programs: assessment grants, revolving loan fund grants, cleanup grants, and job training grants.  Additionally, funding support is provided to state and tribal response programs through a separate mechanism.

See list of all awarded brownfields grants by state: http://cfpub.epa.gov/bf_factsheets/

More information on EPA’s brownfields program: http://www.epa.gov/brownfields/

More information on brownfields success stories: http://www.epa.gov/brownfields/success/index.htm

More about activities in EPA Region 6 is available at http://www.epa.gov/aboutepa/region6.html

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