Washington, DC (February 13, 2009)- Thanks for your efforts to make contact w/ legislators this week. Final language from the Forestry section of the stimulus is provided here. The compromise did not include everything we wanted, but it does provide state forestry agencies with full authorities, which could in theory include U&CF. If you haven’t let your state know what you can do for green jobs, you may want to make them aware now. State foresters are assembling project lists now, and many of them are including urban forestry in their wish lists.
Government agencies will be under a lot of pressure to get the dollars out and working in the economy. In the current environment, there’s a high chance of pass-back funds as some projects fail to launch in time. I am suggesting to all of our ACT members that they think about Youth Crews, Tree Maintenance & Care Crews, and other models that are nearly 100% labor in their cost. Greening of Detroit, Trees Atlanta, and Our City Forest have programs in place which are good models if you are looking for ideas.
The other big opportunity in the stimulus package is $3.2 billion in funding for energy conservation block grants. Your city or county government will receive EEBG funds directly and make all decisions about their use. An excellent energy model you can tout is the tree planting program funded by the Sacramento Municipal Utility District.
Stimulus 2009, Title VII- Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies
Ask Your Senator to Support City Forests in the Economic Stimulus
Presidential Transition Package from the Continental Dialogue
Statement from the Forest Service about Economic Recovery