The city of Springfield is the recipient of a roughly $200,000 grant for environmental job training.
The funding is coming to the city from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Brownfields Job Training Program, according to a news release. The municipality is one of 19 organizations nationwide to be selected this grant round – part of the Biden administration's campaign to shore up funds for environmental protection.
“The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law presents a once-in-a-generation opportunity to build a better America and that means new, good-paying jobs. The Brownfields Job Training grants announced today will prepare over 1,000 individuals for new environmental jobs like those,” EPA Administrator Michael Regan said in the release. “This program will directly impact people’s lives, boosting the environmental workforce while helping to transform communities that need it the most.”
The money represents the fourth round of EPA grant funding for the local Green for Greene environmental job training program, said Sally Payne, Springfield director of workforce development.
"We know this training is life-changing for the graduates of this program, as it allows them a way to acquire skills and obtain gainful employment," she said in the release.
The city of Springfield plans to train 56 students and place at least 35 in environmental jobs. Training includes instruction in hazardous waste operations, trenching and excavation, and asbestos handling.
For most, winter offers a break from gardening. But there’s plenty of action at Amanda Belle’s Farm on East Primrose Street, a Springfield Community Gardens project at the edge of the Cox Medical Center South campus.