As you know, most development projects require permits or authorizations from DEP and the following tools are intended to help streamline the process for applicants.
Pre-Application Consultation Tool (PACT) and Pre-Application Meeting:. DEP offers a handful of tools that can be of assistance to clients to determine whether or not permits will be necessary including a Pre-Application Consultation Tool (PACT), which is a questionnaire filled out on-line that immediately produces an email back to the applicant with a list of permitting considerations. DEP also offers a pre-application meeting to clients. This is a fantastic resource for the public. The applicant would request a pre-application meeting with DEP and DEP would have all the appropriate program staff and possibly the Conservation District and Army Corps of Engineers at the table. DEP listens to the client’s project pitch and then is able to provide feedback, identify and help mitigate any red flags, provide timeframes, etc. DEP follows up in writing to all clients as well. DEP has found that having a pre-application meeting early in the process can make a big difference in the flow of the project and get everyone on the same page from the get go. NWRO Assistant Regional Director, Staci Gustafson, is the contact for pre-application meetings and the PACT. She can be reached directly at 814.332.6935 and firstname.lastname@example.org
If you are considering a brownfield remediation or redevelopment project in 2018, please take a look at DEP’s resources for those projects related to Act 2 and funding opportunities.
DEP Brownfield Success Stories: Undergoing an Act 2 cleanup can be an overwhelming process, but you will see through this webpage that many communities and developers have successfully undergone the Act 2 process, received an Act 2 Relief of Liability, and have brought many acres of once contaminated, blighted property back to productive use. DEP looks forward to assisting you in doing the same.
DEP’s Brownfield Development Guide: To help you navigate the process.
Industrial Sites Reuse Program (ISRP) Funds: ISRP offers grant and low-interest loan financing to perform environmental site assessment and remediation work at former industrial sites. The program is administered by Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) with close oversight of technical issues including work plan by regional DEP office. Program guidelines and application instructions can be found here. Note that the application process begins with a Letter of Intent being submitted to DCED. This is outlined in the program guidelines. ISRP is available to parties including EDCs who do not own the property for assessment activities. You must be the property owner in order to be eligible for remediation funding.
EPA Brownfield Grants: A list of EPA’s Brownfield programs. Western PA has had some luck accessing these competitive dollars. Lawrence County EDC received an assessment grant a few years ago and Greenville, Mercer County and a number of Pittsburgh area communities were recently awarded an EPA assessment grant. Press release.
Finally, DEP works closely with its sister agencies to get make sure communities and clients are connected to the resources that they need. PA DCED recently launched its new PA Business One-Stop Shop. Whether you are thinking about starting your own business, expanding your existing company, or are considering a move to the Keystone State, this site will provide useful information to help you work smart and live happy in Pennsylvania.