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EPA Brownfields Program

EPA's Brownfields Program empowers states, communities, and other stakeholders to work together to prevent, assess, safely clean up, and sustainably reuse brownfields. A brownfield site is real property, the expansion, redevelopment, or reuse of which may be complicated by the presence or potential presence of a hazardous substance, pollutant, or contaminant. On January 11, 2002, President George W. Bush signed into law the Small Business Liability Relief and Brownfields Revitalization Act. Under the Brownfields Law, EPA provides financial assistance to eligible applicants through four competitive grant programs: assessment grants, revolving loan fund grants, cleanup grants, and job training grants. Additionally, funding support is provided to state and tribal response programs through a separate mechanism.

Assessment Grants

$200,000 for hazardous substances
$200,000 for petroleum

EPA has selected Elkhart County for two brownfields assessment grants. Hazardous substances grant funds will be used to create and prioritize a brownfields inventory, perform ten to 15 Phase I and three to five Phase II environmental site assessments, and conduct community outreach throughout the county. Petroleum grant funds will be used to perform the same tasks for sites with potential petroleum contamination.

Community Description

Elkhart County was selected to receive two brownfields assessment grants. Elkhart (population 191,768) is located in northern Indiana, approximately 150 miles north of the City of Indianapolis. The county is heavily dependent on the manufacturing sector, which provides 41.4 percent of the jobs and 57.1 percent of the income for Elkhart County residents. Brownfields have had a significant impact on the county. There are 1,000 sites within the county that may be contaminated. The population of Elkhart County increased by approximately 23 percent between 1990 and 2004. More than 50 percent of the increase was in the Hispanic/Latino community, which now constitutes nearly 12 percent of county's population, compared to only 4.3 percent of the state's population. A disproportionate number of these minority residents live in older residential neighborhoods within or adjacent to the industrial areas where many brownfields properties are situated. Assessment and eventual cleanup of brownfields properties will help reduce exposure to contaminants, eliminate unsafe structures and blight that harm the image of neighborhoods, and preserve the county's productive farmlands. Redevelopment is expected to create more viable neighborhoods and commercial corridors, expand tax and employment bases, and make the county a more attractive place to live, work, and raise families.


For further information, including specific grant contacts, additional grant information, brownfields news and events, and publications and links, visit the EPA Brownfields Web site (http://www.epa.gov/brownfields).

EPA Region 5 Brownfields Team
(312) 886-7576
EPA Region 5 Brownfields Web site (http://www.epa.gov/R5Brownfields)

Grant Recipient: Elkhart County, IN
(574) 875-3341

The information presented in this fact sheet comes from the grant proposal; EPA cannot attest to the accuracy of this information. The cooperative agreement for the grant has not yet been negotiated. Therefore, activities described in this fact sheet are subject to change.

EPA 560-F-06-100
May 2006
United States
Protection Agency
Washington, D.C. 20460
Land and
Management (5105T)

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