Michael R. Bloomberg and Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm Speak to Mayors at Local Infrastructure Hub Convening
Bloomberg Philanthropies, in Partnership with National League of Cities, Results for America, and The U.S. Conference of Mayors, Hosts 3rd Virtual Convening with 370+ Cities
Bloomberg, Granholm Urged Mayors to Take Advantage of Energy Grant Program Funding Included in Bipartisan Infrastructure Law
New York, NY – Bloomberg Philanthropies this week hosted the third virtual convening for mayors as part of the Local Infrastructure Hub: Support for U.S. Cities and Towns to Put Federal Funding to Work for Residents. Michael R. Bloomberg, Founder of Bloomberg LP and Bloomberg Philanthropies and the 108th mayor of New York City, was joined by Department of Energy (DOE) Secretary Jennifer Granholm. The Hub is a national program, launched in July, to ensure that all cities and towns can access funding from the $1 trillion Bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act to drive local recovery, improve communities, and deliver results for residents.
Bloomberg and Secretary Granholm highlighted the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant (EECBG) Program and its availability for mayors. Through this grant program, cities with populations of more than 35,000 will automatically receive funds directly from the federal government — based on their population size — once they submit a letter of interest to DOE.
Bloomberg and Secretary Granholm were joined by Columbus Mayor and U.S. Conference of Mayors Second Vice President Andy Ginther, Fremont Mayor Lily Mei, Des Moines Mayor Frank Cownie, Burnsville Mayor Elizabeth Kautz, Piscataway Mayor Brian Wahler, Huntington Mayor Steve Williams, and Raleigh Mayor Mary-Ann Baldwin, who all shared insights during the convening. Nearly 400 attendees participated in the convening.
Michael Bloomberg began the meeting by discussing how his New York City administration increased energy efficiency, noting that, “we reduced pollution from new and existing buildings by passing innovative green building standards. We improved air quality by phasing out dirty heating oil and we addressed urban heat islands by painting roofs white. All of these steps reduced emissions, reduced asthma and other diseases, reduced energy bills, and put a lot of people to work in good paying jobs.” He acknowledged that mayors are currently facing an urgent challenge, sharing that “the need for bold action to reduce emissions from buildings is growing by the day. And the stakes could not be higher – we can see that every time we turn on the news and learn of another devastating flood or wildfire. But the good news is that all of the steps we take to reduce emissions also improve our health and save us money. So, we have every incentive to act.”
Bloomberg introduced Secretary Granholm saying, “she really does know the ins and outs of energy efficiency, clean energy, and more. And she knows how important cities are to achieving state and national goals. She’s been crisscrossing the country, talking with Americans about why clean energy is good for jobs, health, and our standing in the world. So, we appreciate the time she is taking to talk to some of the most important leaders in America.”
“The President and this administration know that when it comes to advancing clean energy and energy efficiency, the rubber meets the road at the local level,” said Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm. “That’s why the President’s agenda really empowers local governments to deploy solutions that we know are going to lower energy costs for families, clean up our air and water, create new jobs, raise our energy security, and help us overcome climate change. My team at the Department of Energy is eager to continue to work with America’s mayors through the EECBG Program and others to build cleaner, more energy-efficient cities.”
“As mayors, we owe it to our cities, and the nation, to devote the resources necessary to operationalize our climate action plans to meet the challenges in front of us. The Energy Block Grant can play a key role in all of this,” said Columbus Mayor and U.S. Conference of Mayors Second Vice President Andy Ginther. “In Columbus, Energy Block Grants will help us rapidly deploy things like LED Streetlights, Microgrids, and Resilience Hubs in our communities at a rate and pace that we otherwise could not accomplish because of resource limitations. America’s mayors look forward to continuing to work with Secretary Granholm and the Department of Energy to shape the nation’s clean energy future.”
The Local Infrastructure Hub website opened applications for technical assistance for small and mid-sized cities on August 12, 2022 and currently hosts several tools to help cities access the billions of dollars of federal funding now available. This includes the Opportunity Finder, a federal grant navigation tool powered by eCivis that allows cities to easily search for infrastructure grant opportunities, and a Content Calendar for future convenings.
Bloomberg Philanthropies, The Ballmer Group, Emerson Collective, Ford Foundation, and The Kresge Foundation have joined together and contributed $55 million to The Local Infrastructure Hub to help cities of all sizes capitalize on federal infrastructure funding.
The Hub is delivered by The U.S. Conference of Mayors, National League of Cities, and Results for America. The National League of Cities will offer technical assistance to help small towns and mid-size cities develop strong applications to draw down on federal grants. The U.S. Conference of Mayors and Results for America will lead webinars to help cities identify the grant opportunities, get guidance about application criteria and timeframes, and learn about infrastructure innovations and best practices.
Organizations including the Urban Sustainability Directors Network, National Association of City Transportation Officials, African American Mayors Association, and the National Urban League will partner to contribute additional content, expertise, and support to communities. These organizations will help cities think ambitiously about how to spend these grants on opportunities to advance innovative solutions to problems that are increasingly urgent in American cities, especially narrowing racial wealth disparities and cutting the pollution that causes climate change.
U.S. cities of all sizes can access the Local Infrastructure Hub here.
About Bloomberg Philanthropies:
Bloomberg Philanthropies invests in 941 cities and 173 countries around the world to ensure better, longer lives for the greatest number of people. The organization focuses on five key areas for creating lasting change: the Arts, Education, Environment, Government Innovation, and Public Health. Bloomberg Philanthropies encompasses all of Michael R. Bloomberg’s giving, including his foundation, corporate, and personal philanthropy as well as Bloomberg Associates, a pro bono consultancy that works in cities around the world. In 2021, Bloomberg Philanthropies distributed $1.66 billion. For more information, please visit bloomberg.org or follow us on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
Courtney Greenwald, Bloomberg Philanthropies email@example.com