Empire State Development (ESD) recently announced $738 million in funds have been awarded through Round Two of the Regional Economic Development Council initiative. Regional Councils were put in place in 2011 to redesign the state’s approach to economic development from a top-down model to a community-based, performance-driven approach.
One of the awards is a $500K grant to the Mayor’s Office of Environmental Remediation (OER) to help fund cleanup activities on approximately 60 Brownfield projects in low-income and under-served communities throughout all 5 boroughs that are enrolled in the City BCP. As reported in a previously, the City Brownfield Incentive Grant (BIG) program had become over-subscribed.
In another award that might be useful for brownfields, the New York City Department of City Planning will will receive $300K to complete an “Open Industrial Uses Study” to address issues related to flooding and dispersion of on-site contaminants. The project will examine pollution prevention controls and existing standards and regulations for materials storage. An outreach program to inform industry stakeholders of any amendments to the site and pollution prevention controls, and incentives offered to bring facilities into compliance will be developed. This award will be administered by the the NYS Department of State (DOS).
Finally, the NYC Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) will receive $500K for a Wetlands Mitigation Banking Pilot Program. The funds will be used to establish seed financing for the restoration of targeted wetlands in NY Harbor. This will leverage public and private investment in 60 waterfront development projects that may require wetlands mitigation to offset environmental impacts to tidal wetlands.