Urban Parks & Rec Legislation
H.R. 3734, THE URBAN REVITALIZATION AND LIVABLE COMMUNITIES ACT
Redeveloping urban areas by re-investing in community recreation facilities and infrastructure that help achieve national goals
Nearly 80% of the U.S. population lives in urban areas, many of which are suffering from deteriorating community infrastructure, limited green spaces, poor health and chronic disease, as well as juvenile delinquency.
Overview Of The Legislation
The Urban Revitalization and Livable Communities Act (H.R. 3734) will invest in the health and well-being of communities across this nation from the standpoint of economic recovery, environmental protection, as well as providing safe and affordable places for recreation. The Urban Revitalization and Livable Communities Act authorizes $445 million to be appropriated annually and provided to urban park and recreation agencies through federal assistance grants (which must be matched with local funds). Grants could be used to rehabilitate existing and develop new urban parks and recreational infrastructure and revitalize communities by increasing economic development; improving public health; increasing daily physical activity; reconnecting children with nature; reducing crime; and providing safe, healthy alternatives for at-risk youth.
H.R. 3734 focuses on projects in urban areas that provide revitalization through:
- providing more places and spaces for engaging in structured and unstructured physical activity
- connecting children to the outdoors
- promoting physical activity
- connecting to public transportation, schools, and public housing
- creating green jobs and using green technologies
- promoting environmental stewardship components such as sustainable landscape features and materials; increased planting of trees; stormwater management and water conservation
- using energy efficient components such as energy efficient lighting and HVAC systems
H.R. 3734 provides federal assistance grants (which must be matched with local funds) to rehabilitate and develop urban parks and community recreational infrastructure and for the continued investment in programs that address national issues such as juvenile delinquency and issues affecting at-risk youth. Economically distressed communities can use these grants to improve their recreational facilities and infrastructure, increase economic development, improve safety in communities and provide healthy options for at-risk children.
Types of Federal Assistance Grants provided in the Urban Revitalization and Livable Communities Act:
- Rehabilitation Grants
The rehabilitation grants in the bill will include matching capitol grants to local governments for the purpose of rebuilding and expanding new and existing recreation and facilities.
- Innovation Grants
The innovation grants in this bill are matching grants for the personnel, facilities, equipment, supplies, and services for urban parks and recreation facilities to address common problems related to facility operations.
- At-Risk Youth Recreation Grants
The at-risk youth recreation grants include matching grants for existing programs that have demonstrated success in providing alternative activities to children who are at risk of engaging in criminal behavior and grants for programs in communities with a high prevalence of crime by youth offenders.
- Recovery Action Program Grants
Recovery Action Program Grants are matching grants to local governments for local park and recreation recovery action programs, including resource and needs assessment, coordination, citizen involvement and planning, and program development activities to encourage public definition of goals and to develop priorities and strategies for overall recreation system recovery.
For more information, please contact Mariel Lim in Congressman Albio Sires’ office at 202-225-7919