Board Action Request
Neg 11 fall 2020 ERF grant agmts for cleanup of contaminated sites, various periods, total combined NTE $1,590,638
BE IT RESOLVED, that the County Administrator be authorized to negotiate the following Environmental Response Fund grant agreements for the assessment and cleanup of contaminated sites, during a two-year period beginning on the date of execution:
- Agreement PR00002937 with the City of Minneapolis, in an amount not to exceed $85,706;
- Agreement PR00002928 with the City of Minneapolis, in an amount not to exceed $92,329;
- Agreement PR00002935 with Cristo Rey Jesuit High School or affiliated entity, in an amount not to exceed $162,775;
- Agreement PR00002934 with the City of Minneapolis, in an amount not to exceed $190,000;
- Agreement PR00002931 with the City of Lakes Community Land Trust or affiliated entity, in an amount not to exceed $150,000;
- Agreement PR00002929 with Juxtaposition Arts Campus Redevelopment or affiliated entity, in an the amount not to exceed $37,513;
- Agreement PR00002936 with the City of Bloomington HRA, in an amount not to exceed $172,766;
- Agreement PR00002932 with the Minnesota Brownfields or affiliated entity, in an amount not to exceed $200,000
- Agreement PR00002938 with the City of Minneapolis, in an amount not to exceed $100,421;
- Agreement PR00002930 with Vista 44 Housing LLC or affiliated entity, in an amount not to exceed $25,000;
- Agreement PR00002933 with the City of Minneapolis, in an amount not to exceed $374,128; and;
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that following review and approval by the County Attorney's Office, the County Administrator be authorized to sign the agreements on behalf of the county; that costs incurred by the grantees after the board approval date be eligible for reimbursement upon execution of the agreements; that the County Administrator be authorized to approve one 12-month extension of the agreements; and that the Controller be authorized to disburse funds as directed.
History: The Environmental Response Fund (ERF) helps revitalize sites by providing funding to assess and clean up contamination. The grants reduce barriers to site improvement or redevelopment caused by the added costs of environmental cleanup and lessen the risk to human health and the environment posed by the contamination.
Minnesota Statutes, sections 383B.80 and 383B.81, authorize the county to collect a mortgage registry and deed tax for the purpose of establishing an environmental response fund. The board established the ERF in 1997 (Resolution 97-06-410R1) and authorized the grant program in 2001 (Resolution 01-9-615).
Projects supported by ERF grants provide a variety of community benefits, including creating affordable and moderately priced housing, supporting economic development, developing green space, and making infrastructure improvements. Many ERF grants address environmental contamination in communities with significant disparities in health, including low income areas and communities of color. Some of these sites become a catalyst for new development in neighboring areas, which can help address racial disparities in housing, employment, and income.
As a major economic center for 150 years, the county has a concentration of contaminated sites. Much of this contamination was caused by chemical spills or improper disposal of hazardous waste prior to the existence of environmental regulations. These improper disposal practices of the past can still cause soil and groundwater pollution that present environmental risks today.
Since 2001, the county has awarded 406 ERF grants totaling $57,557,091.
This request is to authorize the County Administrator to negotiate 11 ERF grant agreements, during various periods, with the total combined amount not to exceed $1,590,638.
In August 2020, the county solicited proposals from municipalities and nonprofit and for-profit developers. In an effort to maximize collaboration between funders, the timing of the ERF grant round coincides with additional contamination cleanup grant programs administered by the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development and the Metropolitan Council.
A committee reviewed the grant applications and recommend funding 11 of the 15 project applications received. Applications were evaluated on project need, degree of contamination, the appropriateness of the cleanup approach, creation or preservation of affordable and/or moderately priced market-rate housing, the creation of economic development, and the readiness of the project to proceed.
The fall 2020 ERF award recommendations are summarized as follows and are described in detail in the report, Environmental Response Fund Fall 2020 Funding Recommendations.
- 550 West Lake Street (Phase 3), Minneapolis - $85,706 for cleanup costs associated with the construction of an estimated 72 units of affordable housing (Grantee: City of Minneapolis)
- 2025 West River Road, Minneapolis - $92,329 for cleanup costs associated with the construction of an estimated 163 units of affordable housing and 2,000 square feet of commercial space. (Grantee: City of Minneapolis)
- Cristo Rey Jesuit High School, Minneapolis - $162,775 for the installation of a vapor mitigation system (Grantee: Cristo Rey Jesuit High School or affiliated entity)
- Currie Commons, Minneapolis - $190,000 for cleanup costs associated with the construction of an estimated 187 units of affordable housing (Grantee: City of Minneapolis)
- Fall 2020 Homes (CLCLT), Minneapolis - $150,000 for abatement costs associated with renovating 10 single-family, permanently affordable homes (Grantee: City of Lakes Community Land Trust or affiliated entity)
- Juxtaposition Arts Campus Redevelopment, Minneapolis - $37,513 for cleanup costs associated with the construction of a new 16,000-square-foot art center (Grantee: Juxtaposition Arts, Inc. or affiliated entity)
- Lyndale Flats, Bloomington - $172,766 for cleanup costs associated with the construction of an estimated 81 units of affordable housing (Grantee: City of Bloomington HRA or affiliated entity)
- Minnesota Brownfield Gap Financing Program, countywide - $200,000 to continue the Brownfields Gap Financing Program, which provides small environmental assessment grants to government entities and non-profit organizations (Grantee: Minnesota Brownfields or affiliated entity)
- Snelling Yards Senior Housing, Minneapolis - $100,421 for abatement and cleanup costs associated with construction of an estimated 100 units of affordable senior housing (Grantee: City of Minneapolis)
- Vista 44, Hopkins - $25,000 for cleanup costs associated with the construction of an estimated 50 units of affordable housing (Grantee: Vista 44 Housing LLC or affiliated entity)
- Walker Methodist Raines, Minneapolis - $374,128 for abatement of asbestos associated with the construction of an estimated 89 units of affordable senior housing (Grantee: City of Minneapolis)
This request also is for approval for grantees to incur costs after the board approval date, with reimbursements being paid upon execution of the grant agreements.
Impact/Outcomes: The recommended ERF grant awards will fund asbestos and lead-based paint abatement, soil assessment and cleanup, and soil vapor mitigation. The awards will also assist developments that increase the tax base, create permanent jobs, and create affordable and moderately priced market-rate housing. The recommended grants provide for the renovation or construction of an estimated 752 affordable housing units.
ERF grants reduce environmental contamination and support projects in communities with disparities in health, housing, employment and income.
|Recommendation from County Administrator: Recommend Approval|