The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (U.S. EPA) considers community involvement to be an important part of the Superfund program. U.S. EPA conducts community involvement activities to (1) encourage open lines of communication between residents and the U.S. EPA as well as with local and state government officials; (2) inform communities about the Superfund program, site-specific studies, and the progress of site activities; and (3) involve the public in decision-making processes. As part of its community involvement efforts, U.S. EPA conducts community assessments for each Superfund site to determine the specific issues and concerns of interest to local residents. Issues and concerns are usually identified through interviews conducted with local residents, community and environmental groups, local officials, and businesses near a particular site. After conducting a community assessment, U.S. EPA prepares a CIP that typically contains site background information, provides names and addresses of key community contacts, summarizes site-related concerns and issues of importance to the local community, and provides an outline of specific community involvement program objectives and activities to address the concerns identified and to keep residents informed throughout the site cleanup process.