$600,000 awarded to community groups for Leeward projects

The Department of Business, Economic Development & Tourism (DBEDT) and the Department of Health (DOH) has awarded $600,000 in Supplemental Environmental Project grants
to eleven community organizations to undertake various environmental projects on Oahu's Leeward Coast.

Some of the organizations receiving funds are Ka'ala Farm, Nani O Waianae, Hawaii Nature Center and Nanakuli Elementary School.

"These are great organizations doing good work in the community, and we should support projects like these," stated Lt. Governor Brian Schatz.  "I'm proud of the work of DBEDT and DOH, and I'm glad we could play a part in making these awards happen."

The Hawaii Fair Share Initiative, a program launched and administered through the Lt. Governor's office, coordinated with state agencies and non-profit organizations, helping to enable the grant monies to be released and the projects to move forward.

Funding for the SEP grants program is part of a settlement agreement between the State of Hawaii, Department of Health, Waste Management of Hawaii, Inc. and the City & County of Honolulu over issues concerning the Waimanalo Gulch Sanitary Landfill.

DBEDT's Community-Based Economic Development (CBED) program administered the SEP grants program and selected the awardees.

"We are pleased to be able to support these projects," said DBEDT Director Richard Lim.  "They were selected because they will have a positive environmental impact on Leeward communities, and help further the goal of protecting and enhancing the public health and the environment, as well as educating children, families and the community about important environmental issues."

The projects will be completed by the end of 2011.

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