Guide to Local Recovery Update: June 28

Jun 28, 2023

Applications for an energy block grant and a street safety program are due soon and the Internal Revenue Service is holding a June 29 webinar on proposed energy credit tax guidance. The National League of Cities and the Local Infrastructure Hub are also holding several recovery webinars.

Energy block grant applications now due July 31

The U.S. Department of Energy extended the deadline for the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant program. The formula grant program supports initiatives that reduce fossil fuel emissions, decrease total energy use, and improve energy efficiency. Over 200 cities in California are eligible for funding.

Although formula grants are noncompetitive, cities must apply by July 31 to receive the funding. The minimum pre-award amount is $76,170, but most cities are set to receive more than $150,000. Matching funds are not required.

The National League of Cities has released several related resources for cities, including one for smaller communities.

New program helps improve street safety for all users

The U.S. Department of Transportation is accepting applications for the Safe Streets and Roads for All program. Funded by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, the program helps cities prevent roadway deaths and serious injuries.

Two types of grants are available: Planning and Demonstration Grants help cities develop or supplement a comprehensive safety action plan. This can include goal setting, safety analysis, and certain pilot programs. Implementation Grants provide funding to implement projects identified in an action plan, such as bike networks, speed management strategies, and other multimodal projects. 

Applications are due July 10.

IRS to hold webinar on proposed energy credit tax guidance

The Internal Revenue Service is holding a June 29 webinar on the proposed guidance for the elective pay provision in the Inflation Reduction Act. The regulations would allow cities, rural energy cooperatives, and other stakeholders to fully benefit from clean energy tax credits. The proposed guidance clarifies tax credit eligibility, processes, and timelines, as well as temporary regulations for an electronic pre-filing registration requirement.

The National League of Cities recently released an overview of the guidance, with links to additional resources. The final regulations could come out by the end of the year.  

National League of Cities and Local Infrastructure Hub webinars

The National League is Cities (NLC) is hosting a June 29 webinar on workforce challenges and opportunities, with a focus on smaller communities. Cities of all sizes regularly cite recruitment and retention as critical challenges. The webinar will focus on new survey data from government employees and human resource managers.

Local leaders will share how they are improving broadband access during a July 19 NLC webinar. Access to high-speed and quality internet is a necessity for families, communities, and businesses and is a critical part of the nation’s technology infrastructure. Limited access disproportionately impacts individuals living in rural areas, low-income residents, older adults, as well as Black, indigenous, and people of color.

The Local Infrastructure Hub is also holding two infrastructure webinars, one on economic mobility and another one on clean water infrastructure.

On July 11, policy experts and mayors will discuss the best strategies for securing funding under the former Reconnecting Communities Pilot program. Soon to be under the Reconnecting Communities and Neighborhoods Program umbrella, the program helps mitigate the harm made by past transportation infrastructure decisions.

Similarly, on July 25, environmental policy experts, mayors, and other stakeholders will discuss the best strategies for working with state leaders to enhance water quality infrastructure.

City officials looking for additional information about the American Rescue Plan Act, Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, the Inflation Reduction Act, or additional recovery tools can visit the Cal Cities Guide to Local Recovery portal.