- Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs
Media Contact for Baker-Polito Administration Visits Reading MVP Project Site in Celebration of Climate Week
Troy Wall, Communications Director
READING — In celebration of Climate Week in Massachusetts, which is from September 19, 2022, through September 25, 2022, Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) Secretary Beth Card conducted a site visit at the Mailet, Sommes, Morgan stormwater wetland project in the Town of Reading, which is a recipient of a $2,116,578 Municipal Vulnerability Program (MVP) grant. The award was previously announced in August 2022 as part of a $32.8 million round of MVP grants and will provide critical funding to address stormwater infrastructure.
“Since its creation in 2017 by the Baker-Polito Administration, the Municipal Vulnerability Program has been a vital tool for many of the Commonwealth’s cities and towns by providing over $100 million as we work together to address the impacts of climate change,” said Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Beth Card. “Climate Week serves as a great opportunity for us all to celebrate the many ongoing efforts taking place across Massachusetts, such as the creation of a resilient wetlands system in the Town of Reading and surrounding communities, to make our state a more resilient place to live and work.”
MVP funding for the project enables the construction of a stormwater wetland system at Maillet, Sommes, and Morgan, which will help create additional offline stormwater storage, reduce inland flooding within the local area as well as downstream communities, and improve water quality. The project will also improve stream bank stabilization and ecological stability while improving open space development and trail connectivity.
“We are grateful to the Commonwealth for this substantial grant funding,” said Reading Town Manager Fidel Maltez. “The Maillet, Sommes & Morgan Conservation stormwater project will make great strides to reduce flooding for thousands, improve public safety, reduce property loss, and enhance our trails and protect our natural resources.”
“I’m delighted to see Reading leading the way in identifying this wetlands site as an important resource for the community and the entire Mystic River watershed, and putting together a strong plan to secure this sizable state grant,” said State Senator Jason Lewis (D-Winchester). “The state legislature has prioritized funding for the MVP program because we understand how critical it is for local municipalities to receive both technical and financial assistance to help mitigate the growing impacts from climate change, such as increased flooding and ecological damage.”
“The MVP grant program is a perfect example of the Baker-Polito Administration’s ongoing commitment to forging strong state and municipal partnerships to help improve the quality of life for all Massachusetts residents,” said House Minority Leader Bradley H. Jones, Jr. (R-North Reading). “I want to thank Secretary Card for recognizing the Town of Reading’s willingness to take a leadership role in pursuing a multi-community, regional approach to address the very real threat associated with climate change.”
“Massachusetts continues to be a national leader in the fight to save our natural resources and local projects like this one will combat local flooding, capture stormwater, and help preserve these critical conservation areas for generations to come”, said State Representative Richard M. Haggerty (D-Woburn). “I am grateful to the local officials, the Baker administration, and my colleagues in the state delegation for our collaborative support for this effort as Reading further commits to addressing the impacts of climate change.”
The MVP grant program, which was launched in 2017 as part of Governor Baker’s Executive Order 569, 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 Administration has now awarded $100 million to 97% of the Commonwealth’s cities and towns through the MVP program.