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Federal Agencies Team Up with Iowa’s Cerro Gordo County Health Department


The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Community for a Renewed Environment (CARE) program will partner with the Atlanta-based Centers for Disease Control on four CARE projects, including one with Iowa’s Cerro Gordo County Department of Public Health.

EPA’s Region 7 office in Kansas City, Kan., has been working with Cerro Gordo County and the Centers for Disease Control since October. EPA and the Health Department are working through community-driven citizen and advisory councils.

The community teams are gathering environmental concerns from citizens; helping them understand, rank and prioritize their concerns; and helping plan solutions. A final report will produce a prioritized list of citizen environmental concerns.

EPA Administrator Stephen Johnson and Dr. Julie Gerberding, director of the Centers for Disease Control, demonstrated their support for the partnership by signing a memorandum of understanding today at a ceremony in Washington D.C.

This collaborative partnership will help local communities identify and prioritize environmental concerns and help them use the best local, sustainable solutions for improving their air, land and water.

The Cerro Gordo County Department of Public Health received a $100,000 CARE grant award from EPA in October. The community will create a countywide environmental assessment and prioritize their environmental concerns. The Health Department, through its CARE Citizen Council, created an environmental survey that will be used to help determine the council’s final environmental priorities. Once the county has prioritized its issues, a $300,000 project might be available through a competitive national process and would be used to implement local sustainable environmental solutions.

The three other EPA and Center for Disease Control partnership CARE community sites are Cherokee Nation, Oklahoma; Savannah, Georgia; and Boston, Massachusetts.


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