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US Senate to Consider the Livable Communities Act: $2.2 Billion for Local / Regional Planning

The Obama Administration has recognized the need for coordinated land use and transportation planning by creating the Interagency Partnership for Sustainable Communities to connect federal housing, transportation, and environmental decisions.

This fall, the U.S. Senate will take up the Livable Communities Act (S. 1619, Dodd-CT), which would strengthen and increase funding for the Interagency Partnership for Sustainable Communities.  Not only would the Livable Communities Act make the Partnership permanent under law, but it would also fund planning grants to help communities do better planning to coordinate land use and transportation for the future.

Already, the Sustainable Communities Initiative has committed $100 million for planning grants in 2010 – but the Livable Communities Act would increase that funding to $2.2 BILLION over three years.  California’s cities, counties and regions could use these grants for Sustainable Communities Strategies planning and other efforts to revive our economy, lower greenhouse gas emissions, improve public health and safety, protect open spaces and farmland, and build vibrant city centers.

The Livable Communities Act was approved by a key committee in August, and the momentum is building to see this bill become a law by year’s end.

By Lauren Michele

Lauren Michele – Founder/Owner of Policy in Motion – is a policy consultant/advisor and communications strategist, specializing in progressive and non-partisan politics. She helps candidates and clients build campaigns, coalitions, and communication strategies. Lauren has 15 years of experience working with federal, state, and local government agencies; non-profit organizations; foundations; universities; and political/issue campaigns, including a Presidential Campaign and a California State Bond. Ms. Michele has over a decade of experience working virtually both in team and individual environments, with Policy in Motion offices in California. Policy in Motion’s mission is to promote the environmental, economic, and social well being of communities —fostering a sustainable future for all people and the planet.

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