By Pedro Hernandez
Last month the Ivanhoe Sol included a story on the potential development of a park for the community. The funding source for this project is the Urban Greening Program which is a state program designed to fund greening projects in low income communities like Ivanhoe. This program is funded by the State of California and is intended to provide multiple benefits for low-income communities like creation of green space, restoration of habitat, and air quality improvements by reducing the need for community residents to drive long distances simply to access a park.
Originally, at the beginning of March the Urban Greening Program should have officially opened its process to submit applications for the projects. Jurisdictions like City and County governments can submit applications and the most competitive projects will be invited to a second round to compete for their projects to be fully or partially funded by this year’s program allocation of $28.5 Million.
Unfortunately, the California Natural Resources Agency, Bonds and Grants Unit, the government agency that manages the Urban Greening Program is also experiencing difficulty due to the Coronavirus outbreak.
A statement from the front page of the Urban Greening Program website states, “In light of the recent developments related to COVID-19, The California Natural Resources Agency, Bonds and Grants Unit has postponed the solicitation due date and upcoming workshops for the Urban Greening Grant Program.”
As a result of this delay, the overall process is delayed indefinitely. The Ivanhoe Sol will continue to provide updates as information becomes available over the next few weeks.
This delay may work in the favor of the community of Ivanhoe since there is more time to create a strong application. The Ivanhoe Community Council is still seeking land to develop a proposal for the project.
If you know anyone in the community of Ivanhoe that owns vacant property or who is looking to donate their property for the development of a park please reach out to Adeyinka Glover, attorney at Leadership Counsel for Justice And Accountability at [email protected].