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GLIN==> Northeast-Midwest Weekly Update -- 2 July 2001


*  Brownfields Legislation Introduced in the Senate
*  Combined Heat and Power (CHP)
*  Working Lands Stewardship Act

     Senate Coalition members Carl Levin (D-MI) and Jim Jeffords (I-
VT) introduced two bills on June 21 to expand and enhance federal
brownfield redevelopment efforts.  The Brownfields Economic
Development Act (S. 1078) would allow the U.S. Department of Housing
and Urban Development (HUD) to expand the availability of Brownfields
Economic Development Initiative (BEDI) grants and set aside BEDI funds
for small communities and federally-recognized Indian tribes.  BEDI
grants provide local governments with a flexible source of funding to
pursue brownfield redevelopment through land acquisition, site
preparation, economic development, and other activities.  Currently,
BEDI grants must be awarded in conjunction with economic development
loan guarantees known as Section 108 loan guarantees.  To be eligible
for Section 108 funds, a local community must be willing to pledge
Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds as partial collateral
for the loan guarantee.  This requirement is a barrier to many local
communities that need assistance to revitalize brownfields.  S. 1078
would allow communities to apply for BEDI grants independent of
Section 108 loan guarantees.

     The Brownfield Site Redevelopment Assistance Act (S. 1079) would
expand the efforts of the U.S. Department of Commerce's Economic
Development Administration (EDA) to assist communities with economic
development.  Although EDA has helped many communities redevelop
brownfields, the agency lacks a dedicated funding source for
brownfields, and there is no guarantee that it will be able to sustain
the level of investment it has made in recent fiscal years.  S. 1079
would reinforce EDA's ability to facilitate effective economic
development planning for reuse; develop infrastructure necessary to
prepare sites for re-entry into the market; and provide the capital
necessary to support new business development.

     More details on these bills and information on other brownfield
legislation is available at the Northeast-Midwest Institute brownfields
page at www.nemw.org/brownfields.htm.

     The U.S. Combined Heat and Power Association (USCHPA) -- which
the Northeast-Midwest Institute is a founding member -- hosted a
Policy Day Workshop at the Madison Hotel on June 27.  The event
featured speeches supporting CHP by David Garman, Assistant Secretary,
Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy at the Department of Energy,
and Rob Brenner, Acting Assistant Administrator of Air and Radiation
at the Environmental Protection Agency.  CHP advocates from around the
country discussed critical policy issues including interconnection,
air quality, and tax treatment.  The event began with the announcement
of an alliance of USCHPA, the American Gas Cooling Center, and
Distributed Power Coalition of America, created to promote distributed
energy.  Summaries of the workshop, as well as presentations, will be
available at the USCHPA web site at www.nemw.org/uschpa.

     The Northeast-Midwest Coalitions are seeking co-sponsors for
legislation (H.R. 1945 and S. 933) to advance combined heat and power,
or cogeneration -- a means of generating electricity, heat, and
cooling at efficiency rates more than double that of conventional
technology.  The bills would ensure that CHP systems can interconnect
to the electricity grid and have access to back-up power at reasonable
rates.  The House bill also includes a tax incentive to encourage the
installation of CHP technologies.

     CONTACT:  Olwen Huxley with the Northeast-Midwest Congressional
Coalition (226-9497), regarding the legislation.

     House Coalition members Ron Kind (D-WI) and Wayne Gilchrest (R-
MD) introduced the Working Lands Stewardship Act (H.R. 2375), on June
28, with the broad bipartisan support of 56 members.  This legislation
seeks to improve our nation's farm policy through expansion of
existing USDA conservation programs that improve water quality,
preserve open space, and protect wildlife habitat.  This bill also
creates new programs that assist in rural and market development.

     To co-sponsor this legislation or if you have any questions,
please contact Brad Pfaff or Laura Cimo in Rep. Kind's office at 225-