Funding Strategies for Active & Passive Recreation


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Regional & connectivity planning efforts for the Town of Windham, Connecticut for redevelopment and integration efforts.

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Funding Strategies for Active & Passive Recreation

  2. 2. I. INTRODUCTION – Environmental PlanningEarly Attitudes As long as humans have been involved in organized societies there has been some form ofenvironmental planning. It is clear, however, that environmental planning has to do purelypractical things like food, water and defense (Randolph). A development of nineteenth century environmental planning has recently providedorganized communities the scientific understanding of the environment’s role in public health. Thisunderstanding came about through the documentation of environmentally sensitive diseases, suchas, malaria, dysentery and typhoid. Mount Auburn Cemetery (1831) in Cambridge, Massachusetts was a direct response to the1822 yellow fever epidemic in New York City. The need to alleviate standard burial practices – inthe middle of towns, in church yards or town commons – allowed to relieve overcrowding in localgraveyards. Mount Auburn Cemetery became the prototype of the ―rural cemetery‖ movement ofthe late 1800’s and a successful landscape within the American open space network. Planning problems that societies may experience today seem to result from mismatchesbetween land use and environment (Marsh). The mismatches are mainly four origins: 1. Initial poor land use decisions – ignorance or misconceptions about the environment 2. Environmental change – natural and human interjection 3. Social change – technological change 4. Violations of human values – mistreatment of the environmentPresent Day Attitudes – Environmental Management Environmental Management is the means of controlling or guiding human environmentinteractions to protect and enhance human health and welfare and environmental quality.Ultimately, the consuming public makes choices about products and designs that shape the patternsof production and development (Randolph, 3-5).II. THE LARGER PICTUREThe Federal Role – Financial opportunities for Open SpaceUS Economic Development Administration – 2
  3. 3. The Economic Development Administration (EDA) was established under the Public Worksand Economic Development Act of 1965 (42 U.S.C. § 3121), as amended, to generate jobs,help retain existing jobs, and stimulate industrial and commercial growth in economicallydistressed areas of the United States. EDA assistance is available to rural and urban areas ofthe Nation experiencing high unemployment, low income, or other severe economic distress.The basic principle that distressed communities must be empowered to develop andimplement their own economic development and revitalization strategies, based on theselocally- and regionally-developed priorities, EDA works in partnership with state and localgovernments, regional economic development districts, public and private nonprofitorganizations, and Indian tribes. The EDA helps distressed communities address problemsassociated with long-term economic distress, as well as sudden and severe economicdislocations including recovering from the economic impacts of natural disasters, the closureof military installations and other Federal facilities, changing trade patterns, and thedepletion of natural resources.Some investment programs offered by the EDA:Public Works and Economic Development ProgramSupport the construction or rehabilitation of essential public infrastructure and facilitiesredevelop brownfield sites and provide eco-industrial development. (CFDA No. 11.300).Planning ProgramThe Planning Program helps support planning organizations, including DistrictOrganizations and Indian Tribes, in the development, implementation, revision orreplacement of comprehensive economic development strategies (CEDS), and for relatedshort-term planning investments and State plans designed to create and retain higher-skill,higher-wage jobs, particularly for the unemployed and underemployed in the nation’s mosteconomically distressed regions. (CFDA No. 11.302)University Center Economic Development ProgramThe University Center Economic Development Program is a partnership between the Federalgovernment and academia that helps to make the varied and vast resources of universitiesavailable to economic development communities. (CFDA No. 11.303US Department of Transportation – 3
  4. 4. There are several grants and financial opportunities found here as well as other nationalagencies that work in conjunction with the USDOT to provide funding for American citiesand towns.Some investment programs offered by the USDOT:Transportation, Community, and System Preservation ProgramThe Transportation, Community, and System Preservation (TCSP) Program is acomprehensive initiative of research and grants to investigate the relationships betweentransportation, community, and system preservation plans and practices and identify providesector-based initiatives to improve such relationships. States, metropolitan planningorganizations, local governments, and tribal governments are eligible for discretionary grantsto carry out eligible projects to integrate transportation, community, and system preservationplans and practices that:  Improve the efficiency of the transportation system of the United States.  Reduce environmental impacts of transportation.  Reduce the need for costly future public infrastructure investments.  Ensure efficient access to jobs, services, and centers of trade.  Examine community development patterns and identify strategies to encourage private sector development patterns and investments that support these goals.The Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity ActThe Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act, enacted on August 10,2005, authorized up to $76.7 million per year from Federal FY2005-2009 funds for grants toestablish and operate up to 60 University Transportation Centers (UTCs) throughout theUnited States. Twenty of these centers are scheduled for competitive selection during 2006,and forty centers are located at institutions named in the legislation.VISIONInternationally recognized centers of excellence, fully integrated within institutions ofhigher learning, that serve as a vital source of leaders who are prepared to meet the nation’sneed for safe, efficient and environmentally sound movement of people and goods.MISSIONTo advance U.S. technology and expertise in the many disciplines comprising transportationthrough the mechanisms of education, research and technology transfer at university-basedcenters of excellence 4
  5. 5. National Park Service – Preservation Grant Each year, the U.S. Congress appropriates approximately $37 million to the Historic Preservation Fund (HPF) The HPF provides matching grants to encourage private and non-federal investment in historic preservation efforts nationwide, and assists State, local governments, and Indian tribes with expanding and accelerating their historic preservation activities nationwide. HPF grants serve as a catalyst and "seed money" for preserving and protecting our nations irreplaceable heritage for this and future generations.Save America’s Treasures The Federal Save America’s Treasures program is one of the largest and most successful grant programs for the protection of our nation’s endangered and irreplaceable and endangered cultural heritage. Grants are available for preservation and/or conservation work on nationally significant intellectual and cultural artifacts and historic structures and sites. Intellectual and cultural artifacts include artifacts, collections, documents, sculpture, and works of art. Historic structures and sites include historic districts, sites, buildings, structures, and objects.Preserve America matching-grant Program The Preserve America matching-grant program provides funding to designated Preserve America Communities to support preservation efforts through heritage tourism, education and historic preservation planning. Through these grants project we, as a country, gain a greater shared knowledge about the Nations past, strengthened regional identities and local pride, increased local participation in preserving the countrys cultural and natural heritage assets, and support for the economic vitality of our communities.Revitalizing Rural America - Key federal funding programs for rural areas listed by federal department, a comprehensive list developed to organize available funding opportunities for rural communities and their citizens. 5
  6. 6. Rural Information Center: 1.800.633.7701III. THE CONTEXTUAL PICTUREState Land Management PlanOffice of Policy and Management - www.opm.state.ct.usConservation and Development Policies PlanThe policies of the Plan guide the planning and decision-making processes of state governmentrelative to: (1) addressing human resource needs and development; (2) balancing economic growthwith environmental protection and resource conservation concerns; and (3) coordinating thefunctional planning activities of state agencies so as to accomplish long-term effectiveness andeconomies in the expenditure of public funds.CT Department of Environmental Protection - Space and Watershed Land Acquisition Grant Program(C.G.S. Section 7-131d to 7-131k, inclusive)The Open Space and Watershed Land Acquisition Grant Program provides financial assistance tomunicipalities and nonprofit land conservation organizations to acquire land for open space andto water companies to acquire land to be classified as Class I or Class II water supply property.The Department of Environmental Protection is currently seeking project proposals for theapproved amount of $3,750,000 by the State Bond Commission.Grants may be for the purchase of land that is: 1) valuable for recreation, forestry, fishing,conservation of wildlife or natural resources; 2) a prime natural feature of the states landscape;3) habitat for native plant or animal species listed as threatened, endangered or of specialconcern; 4) a relatively undisturbed outstanding example of a native ecological communitywhich is uncommon; 5) important for enhancing and conserving water quality; 6) valuable forpreserving local agricultural heritage; or 7) eligible to be classified as Class I or Class IIwatershed land. 6
  7. 7. Regional Land Management OrganizationsWINCOG – The Windham Region Council of Governments (WINCOG) is a voluntary associationof municipal governments serving nine communities in eastern Connecticut:Ashford, Chaplin, Columbia, Coventry, Hampton, Lebanon, Mansfield, Scotland, Windham WINCOGs mission is to plan for the future of the region, both physical andeconomic; to provide a forum for intermunicipal discussion and decision-making, and to helptowns implement their planning goals by providing information and assistance.NCCGP – Northeastern Connecticut Council of Governments WINCOG often works with NCCGP to identify major strengths, weaknesses andopportunities of the region and encourages specific actions to foster the growth of business andindustry in the region, while at the same time preserving its unique rural characteristics. 7
  8. 8. IV. LOCAL APPLICATIONSTown of Windham Local Open Space RegulationsOPEN SPACE PLAN Under the advisement of the Open Space Advisory Committee an Open Space Plan has beenadopted to ensure future community balance between economic developments, protection of theenvironment and enhance the quality of life for the citizens of Windham. The Open Space Advisory Committee recommends the Town of Windham:  Purchase land that is available for sale and encourage private open space protection without outright acquisition.  The consideration of acquisitions must have significant value to the Town and its residence and meets one or more of the priority criteria set forth by the OSAC: o Protects and improves water quality (ground and surface water), water habitats and/or increases recreational access to water o Creates connections between existing open space, recreational space, trails or greenways o Preserves and protects habitats that support special plant or animal life, especially those identified as endangered, threatened or of special concern o Preserves farmland, forest land, other agricultural lands and the rural character o the Windham villages o Develops neighborhoods parks, active recreational or educational opportunities 8
  9. 9.  Adopt necessary ordinances and regulations to assure protection of cultural, agricultural, architectural and natural resources  The Town of Windham is of limited nature to support development, with no public sewer or water supply. On-site septic systems must accommodate any type of zoning use residential, commercial or industrial. High density development must be avoided.TRUST FOR PUBLIC LAND – The Trust for Public Land (TPL) is a national, nonprofit, land conservation organization that conserves land for people to enjoy as parks, community gardens, historic sites, rural lands, and other natural places, ensuring livable communities for generations to come. TPLs Conservation Initiatives  Parks for People: Working in cities and suburbs across America to ensure that everyone in particular, every child—enjoys close-to-home access to a park, playground, or natural area. The Trust for Public Lands Parks for People -- New England program works with local residents, community groups, and government officials to improve the health, vitality and quality of life in communities by creating and restoring urban park space. Parks for People -- New England has partnered with communities throughout New England since 1985 to complete over 37 projects and protect more than 600 urban acres, representing an estimated market value of more than $22 million. The cornerstones of the program are:  Strategic partnerships with local, municipal, regional, and nationwide organizations  Public awareness of the need for parks and open space  Community engagement in all aspects of park and open space creation  Cutting-edge research on open space trends, needs, and funding tools These cornerstones are the mix of services and strategies that the program brings to a city or neighborhood that help ensure quality parks for everyone in those cities and neighborhoods. Parks for People -- New England provides leadership and technical assistance to build parks in cities, particularly targeting access for children. We also improve city parks and build new parks in underserved areas. 9
  10. 10. For more information contact:The Trust for Public LandParks for People -- New England33 Union St., 4th FloorBoston, MA 02108(617) 367-6200 10
  11. 11. SOURCESBOOKS Randolph, John. Environmental Land Use Planning and Management. Washington: Island Press, 2004. Marsh, William M. Landscape Planning Environmental Applications. Second Edition. New York: John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 1991.INTERNET Economic Development: Northeastern Connecticut Economic Partnership CEDS 2004 Update. Windham Regional Council of Governments. <> 11