Pennsylvanians Call for the Renewal of Growing Greener

For Immediate Release: June 17, 2011

Twelve More Organizations and Municipalities Join Coalition in Calling for Growing Greener Funding
Support to Restore Funding for Key State Environmental, Conservation and Recreation Program Continues to Grow

(HARRISBURG, PA) The Renew Growing Greener Coalition today announced that twelve more organizations and municipalities have joined in supporting the effort to restore state funding for Growing Greener.

Delaware River City Corporation (Philadelphia), Hay Creek Watershed Association (Geigertown), People’s Emergency Center (Philadelphia), and The W2Group (Philadelphia) have signed the Coalition’s Statement of Support, which calls for the establishment of a dedicated and sustainable source of revenue to support the renewal of Growing Greener. They join more than 215 other organizations and groups that have also announced their support for renewing Growing Greener.

On June 15 the Chester County Board of Commissioners unanimously adopted a resolution calling for the renewal of funding to Growing Greener.  Chairman Terence Farrell said, “Growing Greener has provided tremendous support for preservation and conservation efforts throughout Chester County.  The Commissioners urge the Governor and the Legislature to renew funding for Growing Greener. Without it, Chester County may not be the special place it is today.”

In addition, the following municipalities join over 60 other municipalities and 21 counties, representing over 5 million Pennsylvanians, that have passed resolutions:

*City of Coatesville (Chester County)
*East Vincent Township (Chester County)
*Newlin Township (Chester County)
*London Grove Township (Chester County)
*Phoenixville Borough (Chester County)
*Sadsbury Township (Chester County)
*West Nantmeal Township (Chester County)

“The Coalition’s purpose is to restore and revitalize the state’s most successful environmental, recreation and conservation program ever initiated,” said Andrew Health, Executive Director of the Renew Growing Greener Coalition. “It is not always easy, but seeing how many people support the effort, support the cause, gives us the motivation to fight harder.”

Growing Greener is a bipartisan program established in 1999 under Governor Tom Ridge and later expanded by Governors Schweiker and Rendell.  Since its establishment, Growing Greener has created a legacy of success, preserving more than 33,700 acres of Pennsylvania’s family farmland, conserving more than 42,300 acres of threatened open space, adding 26,000 acres to state parks and forests, and restoring over 16,000 acres of abandoned mine lands.

In 2002, a dedicated source of revenue for Growing Greener was identified in an increase in the state’s “tipping fee,” the fee charged for dumping trash in Pennsylvania’s landfills.  Those funds were supplemented by a $625 million bond approved by voters in 2005, called Growing Greener II. Unless action is taken by the Governor and the Legislature, those funds will be largely exhausted as of June 30th, with most of the Growing Greener I tipping fees going to the debt service on the Growing Greener II bonds.

About the Renew Growing Greener Coalition

The Renew Growing Greener Coalition is the Commonwealth’s largest coalition of conservation, recreation and environmental organizations representing more than 300 organizations and government entities.  For more information on the Coalition, visit www.RenewGrowingGreener.org.

 

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