City officials aim for brownfields grant funding

(Carmen Rodgers) Mayor Johnny Hammock met with officials from Central Alabama's Regional Planning and Development on Wednesday, Sept. 11, at City Hall for guidance on the upcoming brownfields grant process.

Tallassee Mayor Johnny Hammock met with officials with Central Alabama's Regional Planning and Development on Sept. 11 at city hall for guidance on the upcoming grant process.

According to Hammock, this attempt will be the administration's third brownfields grant application to gain funding that could be utilized for cleanup at the eastside mill site.

"We missed it by one point last year," Hammock said. "We will get it this year."

The Environmental Protection Agency 's Brownfields Program provides direct funding for brownfields assessment, cleanup, revolving loans, environmental job training, technical assistance, training and research. To facilitate the leveraging of public resources, EPA's Brownfields Program collaborates with other EPA programs, federal partners and state agencies to identify and make available resources that can be used for brownfield activities.

Multipurpose (MP) Grants provide funding to conduct a range of eligible assessment and cleanup activities at one or more brownfield sites in a target area.

Area-Wide Planning Grants provide funding to communities to research, plan and develop implementation strategies for cleaning up and revitalizing a specific area affected by one or more brownfield sites.

Environmental Workforce Development and Job Training (EWDJT) Grants provide environmental training for residents impacted by brownfield sites in their communities.

Technical Assistance, Training and Research Grants provide funding to organizations to conduct research and to provide training and technical assistance to communities to help address their brownfields challenges.

State and Tribal Response Program Grants provide non-competitive funding to establish or enhance state and tribal brownfields response programs.

Assessment Grants provide funding for brownfield inventories, planning, environmental assessments and community outreach.

Revolving Loan Fund (RLF) Grants provide funding to capitalize loans that are used to clean up brownfield sites.

Cleanup Grants provide funding to carry out cleanup activities at brownfield sites owned by the applicant.

Only certain properties qualify for brownfields grant funding. Brownfields are defined as real properties, 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 or an acting state agency assesses these sites for clean up, prevent more contamination and make plans for re-use.

Under EPA guidelines, a brownfield is created when there is no longer a need for the current use of the property and the property has suspected environmental contamination.