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Tonko Heralds Vote to Reauthorize EPA’s Brownfields Program

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Washington, November 30, 2017 | comments
"Since 2002, the Brownfields program has helped put tens of thousands of acres of economically critical land back into circulation, supporting local economies and encouraging greater development in areas that were previously written off. In the process, more than 130,000 jobs have been created and $24 billion has been leveraged from federal investment. Local governments are realizing that through this program we can turn a liability into an opportunity."
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WASHINGTONCongressman Paul Tonko issued the following statement today immediately after the House voted 409-8 to pass H.R. 3017, the Brownfields Enhancement, Economic Redevelopment, and Reauthorization Act of 2017. Tonko was the lead Democrat advancing the bill, which would reauthorize and expand a previously-expired EPA program that cleans up and assesses sites polluted by former industrial activity, re-opening the door to economic development and environmental revitalization of these often economically vital sites.

“Today’s overwhelmingly bipartisan vote in the House breathed new life into the EPA’s Brownfields program, a vital economic redevelopment tool,” said Tonko. “Since 2002, the Brownfields program has helped put tens of thousands of acres of economically critical land back into circulation, supporting local economies and encouraging greater development in areas that were previously written off. In the process, more than 130,000 jobs have been created and $24 billion has been leveraged from federal investment. Local governments are realizing that through this program we can turn a liability into an opportunity. Today’s vote brings us a step closer to restoring more than 450,000 brownfield sites that still exist across the United States. I urge my colleagues in the Senate to advance this measure so it can be adopted into law without delay.”

Congressman Tonko, who serves as the Ranking Member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee Subcommittee on Environment, is an original cosponsor of the legislation. He worked to shepherd the bill through regular order with his Republican colleagues on the committee.

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