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U.S. EPA awards Los Angeles Conservation Corps $700,000 for green job training

Release Date: 08/11/2009
Contact Information: Francisco Arcaute (213) 244-1815, Cell (213) 798-1404 arcaute.francisco@epa.gov

160 students receive environmental training funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act

LOS ANGELES - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency EPA today awarded the Los Angeles Conservation Corps $700,000 funded in part through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to provide job training for 160 students to learn the latest environmental technologies and prepare them for “green” jobs.


    Attending the event was U.S. EPA Acting Regional Administrator Laura Yoshii; Mary Silverstein, President & CEO, LA Housing Partnership Inc.; Bruce Saito, Executive Director, LACC; Tim Elliot, LA Housing Department and representatives from LA DWP

    “Through this Recovery Act funding, EPA and our community partners will provide training and environmental career opportunities to California residents," said Laura Yoshii, EPA's acting Regional Administrator for the Pacific Southwest. "These grants will help ensure that a trained work force is ready to clean up contaminated sites and revitalize them for productive reuse in our communities."

    The Los Angeles Conservation Corps will receive $700,000 in brownfields job training grants which will be used to recruit residents from the city’s impoverished Empowerment Zone. The funding includes $500,000 in Recovery Act funding and $200,000 in other EPA brownfields funds. The Los Angeles Conservation Corps will train and graduate 160 students, place at least 130 graduates in environmental technician jobs, and track students for at least one year.

    The Los Angeles Conservation Corps’ training program will consist of approximately 400 training hours in hazardous waste health and safety, environmental technologies, lead and asbestos abatement, refinery safety, forklift training, and general industry standards. Four certifications will be offered.

    LACC previously received over $400,000 from EPA and with those funds they trained 126 people and placed 86% in jobs with average salaries of $18/hour.

    “Getting trained for green jobs makes me feel like I’m making a difference, doing something good for the generations to come,” said Brunny Smith, a recent graduate of the Los Angeles Conservation Corps. “I thank the Los Angeles Conservation Corps for giving me the tools, it’s up to me to do the work.”

    Since 1998, EPA has awarded more than $25 million in brownfields job training funds. EPA established the Brownfields Job Training Program to help residents take advantage of jobs created by the assessment, as well as to spur cleanup and sustainable reuse of brownfields sites and to ensure that the economic benefits derived from brownfields redevelopment remain in the affected communities.

    Brownfields are sites where expansion, redevelopment, or reuse may be complicated by the presence or potential presence of a hazardous substance, pollutant, or contaminant. In 2002, the Small Business Liability Relief and Brownfields Revitalization Act (Brownfields Law) was passed. The Brownfields Law expanded the definition of what is considered a brownfield, so communities may now focus on mine-scarred lands or sites contaminated by petroleum or the manufacture and distribution of illegal drugs. EPA’s Brownfields Program encourages redevelopment of America’s estimated 450,000 abandoned and contaminated waste sites.

    President Obama signed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 on February 17, 2009, and has directed that the Recovery Act be implemented with unprecedented transparency and accountability. To that end, the American people can see how every dollar is being invested at Recovery.gov.

    Information on ARRA brownfields job training grants and other EPA Brownfields activities under the Recovery Act: http://www.epa.gov/brownfields/eparecovery/index.htm

    Information on brownfields job training grants: http://www.epa.gov/brownfields/job.htm

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