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Press Release Baker-Polito Administration Awards $11.1 Million in Climate Change Funding to Cities and Towns

89% of Communities Participating in Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness Program
For immediate release:
9/15/2020
  • Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs

Media Contact for Baker-Polito Administration Awards $11.1 Million in Climate Change Funding to Cities and Towns

Craig Gilvarg, Press Secretary

FitchburgContinuing its historic investment in climate change resiliency, the Baker-Polito Administration today announced $11.1 million in grants to cities and towns through the Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness (MVP) Program. This announcement brings total state investment in climate change resilience through the MVP program to over $44 million since 2017. The popular grant and designation program provides communities with funding and technical support to identify climate hazards, develop strategies to improve resilience, and implement priority actions to adapt to climate change. The grants were announced by Governor Charlie Baker and Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito in Fitchburg as part of the Baker-Polito Administration’s celebration of Climate Week in the Commonwealth.

“Projects like those receiving awards today are not only critical for the resilience of our communities, but also create local jobs, contribute to the economy, and avoid future costs,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “As we celebrate Climate Week, I am proud of the $44 million we’ve invested since 2017 through MVP, and we look forward to continuing the strong partnerships we’ve built with cities and towns to prepare for climate change impacts throughout the Commonwealth.”

“The continued success of the MVP program shows how important building resiliency in Massachusetts communities is to our municipal partners and residents,” said Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito. “We are thrilled to reach 89 percent participation in this voluntary program and are excited to continue to invest in efforts to build climate resilience in the Commonwealth.”

With this announcement, 89% of Massachusetts cities and towns, or 312 municipalities, are now enrolled in the MVP program, which pairs local leadership and knowledge with a significant investment of resources and funding from the Commonwealth to address ongoing climate change impacts like sea level rise, inland flooding, storms, and extreme temperatures. The program was created was created in 2017 as part of Governor Baker’s Executive Order 569.

The $11.1 million announced today will go towards MVP Planning Grants and Action Grants. Planning Grants support communities in working with a state-certified technical assistance provider to lead a community-wide planning workshop to identify key climate-related hazards, vulnerabilities and strengths, develop adaptation actions, and prioritize next steps.  Results of the workshops and planning efforts inform existing local plans, grant applications, and policies.

Communities are then eligible for competitive MVP Action Grant funding to implement priority on-the-ground projects. Projects are focused on proactive strategies to address climate change impacts and may include retrofitting and adapting infrastructure, actions to invest in and protect environmental justice communities and improve public health, detailed vulnerability assessments or design and engineering studies, stormwater upgrades, dam retrofits and removals, culvert upgrades, drought mitigation, energy resilience, mosquito control initiatives, and that focus on implementing nature-based solutions such as wetland restoration and floodplain protection.

“In this fourth round of MVP Action Grants, we are seeing the continuation of many projects we helped fund in the planning stage that are now ready for on-the-ground implementation,” said Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Kathleen Theoharides. “We are pleased to see the hard work of our municipal partners pay off in this way and are also excited for the many new communities that are just starting to take action to build resilience to climate change through the MVP planning process.”

The following communities will receive funding to complete the MVP planning process in 2020-2021:

 

 

 

Applicant

MVP Program Region

Grant Award

 

Ashburnham 

Central 

$22,000 

 

Ashby 

Central 

$27,000 

 

Berkley 

Southeast 

$15,000 

 

Carlisle 

Northeast 

$27,000 

 

Cheshire 

Berkshires & Hilltowns 

$32,000 

 

Chester 

Berkshires & Hilltowns 

$26,500 

 

Foxborough 

Greater Boston 

$17,000 

 

Granville 

Berkshires & Hilltowns 

$27,000 

 

Hampden

Greater Connecticut River Valley 

$40,000

 

Hardwick  

Greater Connecticut River Valley 

$20,000 

 

Heath

Berkshires & Hilltowns 

$27,000

 

Holbrook 

Greater Boston 

$32,000 

 

Hopedale 

Central 

$15,000 

 

Leyden

Greater Connecticut River Valley 

$27,000

 

Mount Washington 

Berkshires & Hilltowns 

$20,000 

 

New Braintree 

Greater Connecticut River Valley 

$20,000 

 

Otis 

Berkshires & Hilltowns 

$20,000 

 

Petersham 

Greater Connecticut River Valley 

$20,000 

 

Richmond 

Berkshires & Hilltowns 

$20,000 

 

Stockbridge 

Berkshires & Hilltowns 

$38,000 

 

Upton 

Central 

$20,000 

 

West Brookfield

Greater Connecticut River Valley 

$20,000

 

Westhampton 

Berkshires & Hilltowns 

$20,000 

 

Whitman 

Greater Boston 

$29,000 

 

Wilbraham

Greater Connecticut River Valley 

$32,000

 

Wilmington 

Northeast 

$31,000 

 

Total (26) 

 

$644,500 

         

The following communities were awarded Action Grants:

Applicant

Project Title

Grant Award

Agawam 

Agawam Stormwater Master Plan 

$216,750 

Arlington & Resilient Mystic Collaborative 

Wicked Hot Mystic 

$186,200 

Athol & North Quabbin Community Coalition 

Lord Pond Plaza Improvement Project 

$117,760 

Auburn 

Leesville Pond Water Quality Protection and Community-Wide Resiliency Improvements 

$209,895 

Belchertown 

Enhancing Water Supply Reliability: Resilient Water Storage and Water Conservation – Design & Implementation 

$698,356 

Blandford 

Resilient Community-Driven Master Plan + Resilient Regulatory Work 

$102,824 

Bolton, Harvard, & Devens 

Apple Country Ecological Climate Resiliency and Carbon Planning Assessment 

$250,000 

Boston 

City of Boston Heat Resilience Planning Study 

$280,070 

Braintree 

Monatiquot River Restoration – Construction 

$750,000 

Cambridge & Metro Mayors 

Building Resilience to Climate Driven Heat in Metro Boston 

$268,820 

Chelsea 

Urban Heat Island Mitigation Project 

$262,996 

East Longmeadow 

Comprehensive Master Plan 

$84,833 

Easthampton 

Green Infrastructure Planning and Resiliency Design for Cherry Street 

$175,957 

Fall River, Dighton, Somerset, & Swansea 

Regional Emergency Water System Interconnectivity Analysis 

$100,650 

Fitchburg 

John Fitch Highway – A Resilient Road Corridor 

$271,787 

Granby 

Resilient Regulatory Work and Refocusing on Climate Resilience Pathway in Master Plan 

$34,272 

Great Barrington 

Climate Action, Resilience, and Equity Great Barrington (CARE GB) 

$70,400 

Haverhill 

Little River Dam Removal Feasibility Study 

$129,693 

Holyoke 

Holyoke Urban Forest Equity Plan 

$135,032 

Lakeville, Middleborough, Freetown, Rochester, Taunton, & New Bedford 

Assawompset Ponds Complex Watershed Management and Climate Action Plan 

$93,236 

Lawrence 

Flood Study and DPW Yard Adaptation Plan 

$213,418 

Leominster 

Monoosnoc Brook Bank Stabilization Project 

$200,661 

Lexington & Resilient Mystic Collaborative 

Upper Mystic River Watershed Regional Stormwater Wetlands  

$670,000 

Littleton 

Watershed Protection for Climate Resiliency- Brown's Woods Acquisition 

$763,050 

Lowell 

Claypit Brook Climate Resilience Stormwater Management Capital Improvement Plan 

$138,000 

Lynn 

Strawberry Brook Green Infrastructure Implementation 

$199,090 

Malden 

Malden River Works 

$150,015 

Medford 

Conceptualization and Community Building for Equitable, Community-Driven Resilience Hubs in Medford 

$202,485 

Milford 

Green Stormwater Infrastructure in Milford Town Park 

$419,123 

Millbury 

Armory Village Green Infrastructure Project - Phase II 

$125,600 

Natick & Charles River Watershed 

Building Resilience Across the Charles River Watershed 

$264,171 

Newburyport 

Resilient Critical Infrastructure: Adapting a Wastewater Treatment Facility, Underground Electric Lines, and Public Rail Trail to Future Sea Level Rise and Storm Surge 

$1,000,000 

Plympton 

Building a Municipal Resilience Portfolio: Assessment of Critical Land in the Winnetuxet River Corridor 

$41,929 

Provincetown 

Permit Level Design of the Ryder Street Outfall Relocation and Drainage Improvements 

$70,465 

Revere 

Coastal Resilience Feasibility Study for the Point of Pines and Riverside Area 

$210,689 

Salisbury 

Resilient Rings Island: Preventing a Neighborhood from Being Stranded by Flooding 

$250,000 

South Hadley 

Climate Resilient South Hadley 

$105,000 

Springfield 

People-Focused Resilient Redesign and Retrofits for Community/Civic Infrastructure and Critical Facilities  

$210,422 

Stow & Hudson 

Assessing the Health of Lake Boon – A Key to Climate Resiliency in Stow & Hudson, MA – and Beyond 

$154,000 

Williamstown & Mohawk Trail Woodlands Partnership 

Mohawk Trail Woodland Partnership Forest Stewardship, Resilience, and Climate Adaptation 

$164,575 

Windsor 

River Road Site 1 Culvert 

$460,000 

Total (41) 

 

$10,452,224 

 

MVP supports implementation of the State Hazard Mitigation and Climate Adaptation Plan,released in September 2018, which provided a national model of integrating hazard mitigation priorities with forward-looking climate change data and solutions. The plan is implemented within state government by the Resilient MA Action Team, an inter-agency team led by the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs and the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency and staffed by designated Climate Change Coordinators from each Executive Office. The Resilient MA Action Team provides guidance and decision-making for Plan implementation, further refines priority actions, and ensures actions are integrated into agency practice and policy. The RMAT is also developing climate resilience standards and guidelines for state agencies and a project climate risk screening tool for the annual capital planning process and state-funded infrastructure grant programs to ensure that investments are climate-smart. These tools are anticipated to be launched on ResilientMA.org in early 2021.

"I am proud to be able to partner with the Governor, Lieutenant Governor, and Secretary Theoharides to promote the MVP program in the Worcester Middlesex District," said State Senator Dean Tran (R-Fitchburg). “The grants issued under this program by the Baker-Polito Administration will tremendously assist cities and towns in planning for climate change resiliency and implementing priority projects."

"The Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness (MVP) Program is vital to helping cities and towns address climate change at the local level," said State Representative Natalie Higgins (D-Leominster). "I am excited that Leominster secured funding for the Monoosnoc Brook Bank Stabilization Project through the MVP Program this year."

This year’s Climate Week marks four years since Governor Baker signed Executive Order 569 which lays out a comprehensive approach to further reduce greenhouse gas emissions, safeguard residents, municipalities and businesses from the impacts of climate change, and build a more resilient Commonwealth. More recently, the Administration has committed to investing $1 billion in climate resiliency by 2022 and achieving net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.The Commonwealth is working to determine how best to achieve this emissions limit through its 2050 Roadmap, a nation-leading quantitative and qualitative planning effort that will chart multiple technical and policy pathways by which the Commonwealth can equitably and cost-effectively achieve net zero emissions by 2050, and will conclude with the publication of a long-range 2050 Roadmap report. Additionally, the Administration is working with municipalities throughout the Commonwealth to prepare for the impacts of climate change through the nation-leading Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness (MVP) Program, which has now enrolled 89 percent of cities and towns.

Recently, the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency announced a new federal funding opportunity through FEMA that is designed to reduce, minimize or eliminate the increasing and varied natural hazards that result from our changing climate. The Building Resilient Infrastructure and Communities (BRIC) grant program will fund construction projects might include floodplain restorations, stormwater drainage and culvert upgrades, structural retrofits and floodproofing for community lifelines, and much more.  Projects funded under the program are expected to include the incorporation of nature-based approaches​ to mitigating hazards whenever possible. More information on the BRIC program can be found by visiting MEMA’s website.

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Media Contact for Baker-Polito Administration Awards $11.1 Million in Climate Change Funding to Cities and Towns

Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs 

EEA seeks to protect, preserve, and enhance the Commonwealth’s environmental resources while ensuring a clean energy future for the state’s residents. Through the stewardship of open space, protection of environmental resources, and enhancement of clean energy, the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs works tirelessly to make Massachusetts a wonderful place to live, work, and raise a family.
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