FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Andrew Wheeler and EPA Region 7 Administrator Jim Gulliford were in Springfield Thursday to acknowledge the work done by the City of Springfield and its many partners in conjunction with the EPA. Some of those projects include remediating brownfields and returning them to productive use, job connection and creation, and improving water quality.
“Springfield has proven itself as a model community regarding its Brownfields Program and Integrated Plan. We have an extensive history of partnership with the EPA which includes $8.5 million awarded in grants for brownfield assessment, clean up, revolving loan fund and job training programs,” said City Manager Jason Gage.
While in Springfield, EPA Administrator Wheeler and Region 7 Administrator Gulliford toured several Brownfield projects including the History Museum, Jordan Valley West Meadows, an affordable housing project, a former gas plant site and The Fairbanks Community Hub, seeing first-hand how the $8.5 million in EPA grants have helped revitalized blighted areas of Springfield.
In addition to the brownfields, EPA officials also learned how the City’s Department of Workforce Development is providing job training and placement with an Environmental Workforce Development Job Training Grant. This grant provides training for environmental-related careers at no cost to the participant and gives graduates of the program 13 certifications that are needed to work in environmental jobs.
“To date, we’ve had nearly 100 people graduate from the program which first began in 2017,” said Sally Payne, interim director of Workforce Development for the City. “These jobs average a starting wage of $16 per hour, providing above a livable wage in Springfield,” Payne added.
For more information, contact Director of Public Information and Civic Engagement Cora Scott at 417-380-3352 or [email protected].