EPA Provides Supplemental Funds of $5M to RLF Cooperative Agreements Under CERCLA

March 10, 2020

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) plans to make available approximately $5 million to provide supplemental funds to Revolving Loan Fund (RLF) cooperative agreements previously awarded competitively under section 104(k)(3) of the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA). EPA will consider awarding supplemental funding only to RLF grantees who have demonstrated an ability to deliver programmatic results by making at least one loan or subgrant.

The award of these funds is based on the criteria described at CERCLA 104(k)(5)(A)(ii). The Agency is now accepting requests for supplemental funding from RLF grantees. Specific information on submitting a request for RLF supplemental funding is described below and additional information may be obtained by contacting EPA’s Regional Brownfields Coordinators, your SCS Project Manager, or the Brownfield’s Practice at service@scsengineers.com.

Requests for funding must be submitted to the appropriate EPA Regional Brownfields Coordinator by April 8, 2020. A request for supplemental funding must be in the form of a letter addressed to the appropriate Regional Brownfields Coordinator with a copy to Rachel Congdon at congdon.rachel@epa.gov and to Rachel Lentz at lentz.rachel@epa.gov. Contact your SCS Project Manager or service@scsengineeers.com for more information regarding filing if you are unsure.

Details here.

Background
The Small Business Liability Relief and Brownfields Revitalization Act added section 104(k) to CERCLA to authorize federal financial assistance for brownfields revitalization, including grants for assessment, cleanup and job training. Section 104(k) includes a provision for EPA to, among other things, award grants to eligible entities to capitalize Revolving Loan Funds and to provide loans and subgrants for brownfields cleanup. Section 104(k)(5)(A)(ii) authorizes EPA to make additional grant funds available to RLF grantees for any year after the year for which the initial grant is made (noncompetitive RLF supplemental funding) taking into consideration:

  • Number of sites and number of communities that are addressed by the revolving loan fund
  • Demand for funding by eligible entities that have not previously received a grant under this subsection
  • Demonstrated ability of the eligible entity to use the revolving loan fund to enhance remediation and provide funds on a continuing basis; and
  • Such other similar factors as the Agency considers appropriate to carry out this subsection.

Eligibility
In order to be considered for supplemental funding, grantees must demonstrate that they have significantly depleted funds (both EPA grant funding and any available program income) and that they have a clear plan for utilizing requested additional funds in a timely manner.

Grantees must demonstrate that they have made at least one loan or subgrant prior to applying for this supplemental funding and have significantly depleted existing available funds. For FY2020, EPA defines “significantly depleted funds'” as uncommitted, available funding is 25% or less of total RLF funds awarded under all open and closed grants and cannot exceed $600,000.  For new RLF recipients with an award of $1 million or less, funds will be considered significantly depleted if the uncommitted, available funding does not exceed $300,000.

Additionally, the RLF recipient must have demonstrated a need for supplemental funding based on, among other factors, the list of potential projects in the RLF program pipeline; demonstrated the ability to make loans and subgrants for cleanups that can be started, completed, and will lead to redevelopment; demonstrated the ability to administer and revolve the RLF by generating program income; demonstrated an ability to use the RLF grant to address funding gaps for cleanup, and demonstrated that they have provided for past and will provide for future community benefit from past and potential loan(s) and/or subgrant(s).

The EPA encourages innovative approaches to maximize revolving and leveraging with other funds, including the use of grant funds as a loan loss guarantee or combining with other government or private sector lending resources. Applicants for supplemental funding must contact the appropriate Regional Brownfields Coordinator to obtain information on the format for supplemental funding applications for their region.

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Posted by Diane Samuels at 6:05 am
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