Senator Schiavoni Introduces Bill To Boost Green Infrastructure In Ohio
Grant program would help local communities with storm water management

COLUMBUS – Today, Senate Minority Leader Joe Schiavoni (D-Boardman) introduced legislation that would create a dedicated funding source to support green infrastructure projects in Ohio.

“Too often we find ourselves using our limited financial resources to fix 19th century infrastructure problems with outdated solutions and technology,” said Senator Schiavoni. “Green infrastructure projects are both cost-efficient and low impact to the environment – a win-win for all parties involved. The establishment of a state fund will help local communities finance these worthwhile projects.”

Under Senate Bill 112, the state would create a $10 million grant program to help fund projects related to dam removal, natural stream channel and floodplain restoration, storm water retention wetlands, green streets and parking lots, green roofs, urban reforestation projects, and rainwater harvesting. This program will be modeled similar to the very popular Ohio EPA Surface Water Improvement Fund (SWIF). The Ohio EPA will assist in the review of applications and the Ohio Public Works Commission will administer the grant dollars.

“We applaud Senator Schiavoni for promoting green infrastructure as a cost-effective and low-maintenance solution to the challenge that Ohio’s cities face in managing storm water,” said Josh Knights, Executive Director of The Nature Conservancy in Ohio.  “The creation of a green infrastructure fund will give municipal leaders more flexibility in how they tackle this problem while expanding green space and wildlife habitat for the enjoyment of all Ohioans.”

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