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July 2004

Pennsylvania Distributes $4 Million in Municipal Recycling Performance Grants

Harrisburg, PA— Environmental Protection Secretary Kathleen McGinty announced more than $4 million in recycling performance grants this year to 142 Pennsylvania communities for their recycling efforts in 2002.

DEP has awarded 667 recycling performance grants totaling $15.3 million for recycling efforts in 2002, with about 115 applications still to be processed. The grants are financed by the Recycling Fund, which is supported by a $2-a-ton fee on all materials disposed of in landfills in Pennsylvania.

Recycling performance grant applications are still being accepted for 2003. The application deadline is September 30. Grant applications are available on the DEP website.

Recycling is one of the engines driving Pennsylvania’s economy. Recycling is a $23 billion industry, paying $2.9 billion in wages to 81,322 people employed in 3,247 recycling and reuse industries statewide. Annual sales receipts of these facilities total $18.4 billion.

Demonstrating that a clean environment and good economy go hand in hand, Governor Rendell’s proposed 2004-05 budget will distribute funds from an $800 million voter-approved bond issue to renew and enhance the state’s Growing Greener Program. Part of this initiative would provide $25 million a year to the recycling fund to assist municipalities with existing programs that give more than 10 million Pennsylvanians access to recycling. The money also will help 42 municipalities newly mandated to recycle as a result of the 2000 federal census.

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