Rochelle Receives $400,000 EPA Brownfields Grant

Rochelle Receives $400,000 EPA Brownfields Grant

The US EPA has selected the City of Rochelle for two brownfields assessment grants, each for $200,000. These community-wide hazardous substances and petroleum grant funds will be used to perform environmental site assessments on properties throughout the City of Rochelle. Grant funds also will be used to maintain an inventory of brownfield sites, prioritize sites based on redevelopment potential, prepare hazardous substances and petroleum cleanup plans, and conduct community outreach activities. The successful grant was prepared by a partnership between the City of Rochelle and Fehr Graham, a local engineering and environmental firm.

“Not only are these funds protecting the environment and public health by helping communities clean up blighted toxic waste sites, there are new job growth opportunities for local economies to leverage through these investments,” said Gina McCarthy, EPA Administrator. “With cities looking at how to combat the impacts of climate change, it’s more important than ever for communities to innovate new ways to retrofit formerly polluted sites into assets for the community.”

“We are thankful the US EPA recognized the need for these funds in Rochelle. This grant award will allow the City of Rochelle to take a more proactive approach in identifying and assessing contaminated and blighted properties,” said Rochelle Mayor Chet Olson. “Our goal within the City of Rochelle is to create an ever-improving place to both live and work. This grant award advances this goal.”

“We are excited to see the City of Rochelle receive funding through this great program. Rochelle has a long history of economic development success and these funds will be used to further the effort of redeveloping specific areas in the City,” said Noah Carmichael, Fehr Graham Principal. “It is truly an honor to be involved in this project.”

The US EPA’s Brownfields Program empowers states, communities, and other stakeholders to work together to prevent, assess, safely clean up, and sustainably reuse brownfields. A brownfield site is real property, the expansion, redevelopment, or reuse of which may be complicated by the presence or potential presence of a hazardous substance, pollutant, or contaminant.