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American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

American Government


Federal Highway Administration
May 13, 1999

Thursday, May 13, 1999
Contact: Jim Pinkelman
Tel.: 202-366-0660
FHWA 33-99

14 Communities Selected for Public Education Initiative

The U.S. Department of Transportation and the Environmental Protection Agency today launched "It All Adds Up to Cleaner Air," a national public education and partnership-building initiative in which 14 communities around the country will receive federal funds to increase awareness about how personal travel choices affect traffic congestion and air quality.

"President Clinton is committed to strengthening the federal government’s role as a partner with the growing number of state and local efforts to build ‘livable’ communities, and this program is an example of how we are fulfilling that commitment," U.S. Transportation Secretary Rodney E. Slater said. "By encouraging people to take responsibility in their everyday activities for air quality, this initiative will benefit the environment, communities and the American people."

The "It All Adds Up to Cleaner Air" campaign promotes convenient, simple steps that the driving public can take to have a positive impact on traffic congestion and air quality. These include combining errands into a single, sensible trip, known as trip chaining; performing regular car maintenance; and choosing alternative modes of transportation such as mass transit, biking, walking or ride-sharing. The campaign was tested in 1998 in San Francisco, Milwaukee, and Dover, Del., using materials developed for the DOT-EPA collaborative project.

"It is a hallmark of the Clinton/Gore Administration to provide the tools and resources necessary for local communities to decide what steps they can take to best protect their health and their environment," said EPA Administrator Carol M. Browner. "Through these grants, the private and the public sector will work together to improve the quality of life and health of the community."

The 14 communities each will receive $25,000 in federal funds to customize and place public service announcements (PSAs) in local print and broadcast media and to develop community-based partnership programs to inform the public about the connections between their transportation choices and traffic congestion, air pollution and public health. Other communities nationwide also can receive the PSAs and a tool kit that includes information on how to create, maintain and evaluate a successful education and outreach campaign.

The communities receiving cooperative agreement funds are:

* Dayton, Ohio (Miami Valley Regional Planning Commission)

* Northwestern Indiana/Chicago (Northwestern Indiana Regional Planning Commission)

* Anaheim, Calif. (City of Anaheim)

* Dallas/Ft. Worth (North Central Texas Council of Governments)

* Orlando, Fla. (Central Florida Transportation Authority)

* Atlanta (Georgia Department of Transportation, Georgia Environmental Protection Division, and the Clean Air Campaign

* Sacramento, Calif. (Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District)

* Southeastern Wisconsin (Wisconsin Partners for Clean Air/Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources)

* Phoenix, Ariz. (Maricopa Association of Governments)

* Portland, Ore. (City of Portland Office of Transportation)

* New York and surrounding areas (New York Metropolitan Transportation Council, New York State Department of Transportation, and New York City Department of Transportation)

* Philadelphia and surrounding areas (Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission)

* Washington, D.C. (District of Columbia Department of Health)

* Louisville, Ky. (Air Pollution Control District of Jefferson County)

To help community efforts, a national coalition made up of public and private organizations has joined in this campaign. They include the Environmental Defense Fund, American Highway Users Alliance, American Lung Association, American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials, National Association of Regional Councils/Association of Metropolitan Planning Organizations, Association of International Automobile Manufacturers, American Automobile Association, Ford Motor Company, American Petroleum Institute, Association for Commuter Transportation, ITS America, State and Territorial Air Pollution Program Administrators/Association of Local Air Pollution Control Officials, Society of Automotive Engineers/Service Technicians Society, American Public Transit Association, Edison Electric Institute, The Road Information Program, and League of American Bicyclists.

Each of the 14 communities selected was chosen based on a documented air quality and traffic congestion problem, a committed effort to inform the public about transportation and air quality issues, strong community partnerships, and the commitment of personnel and financial resources. The communities are expected to launch their campaigns during the 1999 summer ozone season.

"It All Adds Up to Cleaner Air" is a collaborative effort of the department’s Federal Highway Administration and Federal Transit Administration, and the EPA ’s Office of Mobile Sources . More than 70 communities applied for the grants through a competitive process.


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