Omnibus package includes full funding for EPA's Office of Sustainable Communities

A contaminated empty lot is more than just an unsightly nuisance for its neighbors. It’s a financial burden on taxpayers, local businesses and nearby homeowners, not to mention a serious threat to land and water quality.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Sustainable Communities helps towns and cities address these kinds of problems and turn them into economic assets. Today Congress is scheduled to vote on the final FY 2012 Omnibus Spending package which includes full funding for the EPA’s Smart Growth Program in fiscal year 2012.

“Today’s vote will be a victory for towns across the country working toward economic prosperity,” said Geoff Anderson, President and CEO of Smart Growth America. “The EPA’s Office provides towns with the tools they need to overcome some of the largest, most persistent challenges to creating a stronger local economy. We are thrilled that Congress decided to support this program.”


Congress passes DOT and HUD funding for FY 2012

HUD’s Washington DC headquarters. Photo by Flickr user matturick.

The first conference report of the FY 2012 appropriations process – which includes funding for both the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the Department of Transportation (DOT) – passed both the House and the Senate on Thursday.

The bill included funding to maintain the Office of Sustainable Housing and Communities at HUD, which will continue to coordinate federal policy with DOT and the Environmental Protection Agency. Together the three agencies compose the federal Partnership for Sustainable Communities. By coordinating policy, the Partnership helps make federal investments more effective and efficient.


Take action! Help defend funding for the Partnership for Sustainable Communities

The Senate and the House of Representatives have each proposed budgets for the 2012 federal fiscal year, and each proposal includes different levels of funding for the federal Partnership for Sustainable Communities.

This week, the two houses are scheduled to reconcile their budgets and will decide funding for the Partnership and its programs for next year. That means this week is a crucial time to voice support for the Partnership.

Tell your Senators and Representative that to support the Partnership for Sustainable Communities: Call your members of Congress today.

The Partnership is an innovative and effective collaboration between the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Department of Transportation and Department of Housing and Urban Development. Through the Partnership these agencies coordinate federal policies, programs and resources to achieve multiple goals at the same time. This makes policy more efficient, makes best use of taxpayer dollars and helps build strong, durable economies in communities across the country.

The Partnership depends on the support of advocates like you. When you speak out, Congress listens!

Voice your support: Tell your Senators and Representative to continue funding the Partnership in Fiscal Year 2012.

Let’s work together to protect programs that put taxpayer dollars to good work and strengthen America’s local economies: call your members of Congress today.