For Immediate Release - May 16, 2007

Governor Patrick Announces New Sustainable Development Policies

Governor Patrick Announces New Sustainable Development Policies

BOSTON-Wednesday, May 16, 2007-After meeting with his Development Cabinet, Governor Deval Patrick today announced a series of changes to the state's development policies, incorporating clean energy as a key development goal and restructuring certain grant programs to better serve environmental and housing purposes.

"As we grow our economy, our energy, environmental, housing and transportation policies and initiatives must work in sync," said Governor Patrick. "Clean energy will be one of our development goals, and our grant programs must achieve their intended results."

For the first time, the state's Sustainable Development Principles now include promoting clean energy, in the form of energy efficiency and renewable power generation, in order to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and consumption of fossil fuels. Other changes encourage the creation of "pedestrian-friendly" districts and neighborhoods that mix commercial, civic, cultural, educational, and recreational activities with parks and homes. In housing, the principles call for buildinghomes "near jobs, transit, and where services, including water supply, are available." In addition, the principles would "foster the development of housing, particularly multifamily and smaller single-family homes."

"Our state needs to protect its natural resources and grow its economy. Governor Patrick's sustainable development principles show the way to do both," said Jim Gomes, president of the Environmental League of Massachusetts.

The Governor has also removed three affordable housing grants and three land preservation grants from the portfolio of grants that fall under the purview of the Commonwealth Capital Scorecard. Governor Patrick determined that the Commonwealth Capital Scorecard did not properly apply to these grant programs, and could actually discourage some affordable housing projects and undercut attempts to protect the Commonwealth's most valuable habitat land.

Governor Patrick has also convened an interagency group of senior level officials from the Executive Office of Administration and Finance, the Executive Office of Transportation, the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs, and the Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development that will examine ways to further improve the Commonwealth Capital program moving forward.

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