Wes Hickman or Kevin Bishop
– U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) today announced the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has awarded Florence and Rock Hill $200,000 each for a brownfields assessment grant.
Florence will use the grant to perform environmental site assessments on brownfields in seven targeted areas of the city. These include a 20-acre site that inhibits economic growth in some low-income, predominantly minority neighborhood.
Rock Hill will use the funds to conduct four Phase II assessments of former textile mills in the Arcade-Westside neighborhood area. Funds also will be used to conduct community outreach activities and redevelopment of planning for three of the four sites to be assessed.
The Arcade-Westside area contains several small business operations, but has lost four major textile mills in the last 15 years. The 2,500 residents of the neighborhood surrounding the targeted area relied heavily on these mills for employment.
On January 11, 2002, President George W. Bush signed into law the Small Business Liability Relief and Brownfields Revitalization Act. Under the Brownfields law, EPA provides financial assistance to eligible applicants through four competitive grant programs: assessment grants, revolving loan fund grants, cleanup grants and job training grants.
The Brownfields Program brings together states, communities, and other stakeholders in economic development to work together to prevent, assess, safely clean up, and sustainably reuse brownfields.