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SG-W:/ Fwd: Eco-Compass--Sprawl Watch, July 26, 1999
- Subject: SG-W:/ Fwd: Eco-Compass--Sprawl Watch, July 26, 1999
- From: Steve Bean <email@example.com>
- Date: Tue, 27 Jul 99 11:51:27 -0400
The devoted among you may want to get this newsletter.
---------------- Begin Forwarded Message ----------------
Date: 07/26 3:57 PM
Received: 07/27 9:36 AM
From: Island Press, firstname.lastname@example.org
This week Eco-Compass introduces a new feature. Periodically
we will distribute electronic resources from select
environmental information providers.
We start with SPRAWL WATCH, the new on-line newsletter devoted
to the latest news and research on sprawl, smart growth and
livable communities. SPRAWL WATCH is produced by the
Sprawl Watch Clearinghouse, http://www.sprawlwatch.org,
a resource center which provides information, advice, and
referrals on issues related to sprawl, smart growth and
Volume 1, Number 7 - July 26, 1999
= = =State and Local News = = =
The Bay Area Transportation and Land Use Coalition a coalition
of more than 50 regional transportation, environmental,
business and social justice groups announced a campaign to
promote 'smart growth' policies at the local and regional levels
throughout the Bay Area. The coalition plans to influence the
expenditure of billions of state and federal transportation
dollars that the organizations see as crucial in their ongoing
efforts to halt suburban sprawl.
Urban sprawl and new farming techniques, including more
reliance on pesticides, have reduced the Georgia's quail habitat
and food supply. As a result, Georgia's quail population has
declined more than 70 percent in the past 30 years. Quail are
considered an indicator species -- a barometer of the
ecosystem. When quail have problems, other creatures that
share their habitat have problems. Wildlife officials hope they
can reverse the trend this fall when they kick off a pilot
program known as ``Georgia's Bobwhite Quail Initiative.''
It will offer incentives and cost-sharing payments to
landowners who agree to provide quail habitat.
The newly formed Maine Farmland Trust is the first and only
land trust in Maine dedicated to protecting the state's
productive agricultural land. Farmers, concerned citizens,
representatives from land trusts and state officials formed the
trust, which is currently seeking nonprofit status and
developing a fundraising strategy.
Contact: Frank Miles, (207) 767-1031.
Tradition Community Development Corp. recently announced plans
for a $1.7 billion planned community on 4,600 acres in
Mississippi's Harrison County, 12 miles north of the Gulf Coast.
"Tradition is the solution to unchecked sprawl", said Michael
Olivier, executive director of the Harrison County Development
Commission. "Harrison County will continue to grow regardless
of Tradition. The issue is whether we are going to grow in an
orderly fashion or have haphazard growth that sprawls across
the county leading to groundwater pollution and other problems."
The Mississippi Department of Economic and Community
Development (MDECD) is providing $20 million in infrastructure
(Becky Gillette, Mississippi Business Journal, July 1999)
Utah and Wisconsin
Salt Lake City has two thousand workers pouring concrete around
the clock, turning six lanes of I-15 into 12 lanes through
Salt Lake City and its suburbs. When the $1.6 billion expansion
is completed in two years, state officials say, they will need a
new, parallel highway to keep traffic moving along the 100
miles of the Wasatch Front, where most of Utah's 2.1 million
people live. Meanwhile, Milwaukee is taking sledge-hammers to
tear down a half-built section of highway that was supposed to
cut right through old Milwaukee. The city plans to use more than
$20 million in federal transportation money to carry out the
nation's largest highway deconstruction project.
(Timothy Egan, New York Times News Service, 7/14/99)
= = =Nationwide= = =
Sen. Rick Santorum, R-Pa., said Wednesday that federal spending
restrictions would make it difficult to renew a three-year-old
farm preservation program that helps state and local
governments buy easements, or development rights, from
farmers. But he plans to press on with his bill to authorize $50
million a year for easements, under which farmers would
continue to own land but would be barred from nonfarm
activities. A bill by Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., would offer $55
million. ``The Farmland Preservation Program enables producers
facing economic uncertainty to keep their valuable land in
production while keeping development pressures at bay,''
Santorum said. President Clinton requested $77.5 million for
farm preservation in his fiscal 2000 budget.
(7/22/99, AP, Anick Jesdanun)
On 6/29, Rep. Canady (R-FL) introduced a bill (H.R.2372) to
create new opportunities to bring "takings" claims, wherein
developers and other private landowners seek compensation
for not polluting or not building on protected land. The bill
is virtually identical to legislation (H.R.1534) passed by the
House in 1997. It would allow developers to circumvent local
zoning procedures to sue towns, cities, and counties for
alleged takings directly in federal court. Sen. Hatch (R-UT) has
introduced a similar bill (S. 1028). Click on Legislative Watch at
Natural Resources Defense Council's website
The Post Office Community Partnership Act, sponsored by Rep.
Earl Blumenauer (D-ND) in the House and Senator Max Baucus
(D-MT) in the Senate, requires that the Postal Service offer
a public hearing and comment period for local residents before
closing or relocating a post office. It also requires that the
Postal Service consider the impact on the community of closing
the post office, including whether the post office is part of a
core downtown business area.
To view the text of the bill, see the New Rules website, at:
The General Accounting Office (GAO) is in the process of
examining, through case studies, specific smart growth
efforts in various-sized communities around the country.
The goal of the March 1999 request by the Senate Smart
Growth Task Force is to obtain a better understanding
of how federal programs impact smaller communities.
= = =New Releases= = =
A new report by the Progressive Policy Institute says that
states need to invest in the foundations of success in the
New Economy: good public education, support for research
and development, availability of job-specific skills training,
good quality of life, and quality government, rather than simply
provide corporate tax subsidies and giveaways. (AP, 07/22/99)
The report, ''The State New Economy Index: Benchmarking
Economic Transformation in the States'' can be found at
On July 28, Brookings Institution will release a report on
growth's impact on social, economic, and demographic trends
in the Washington area. The report, "A Region Divided: The
State of Growth in Greater Washington, D.C.", shows that this
is a region divided, with too much growth in some areas and
too little in others. This imbalance creates challenges for all
the communities and residents of this area. At this forum,
local leaders will react to the Brookings report, the positive
and negative consequences of growth, and ways to bridge the
"The Debate Over Future Density of Development: An Interpretive
Review" -- Lincoln Institute of Land Policy
Working Paper 1999, 29 pages.
Minnesotans for an Energy-Efficient Economy release "Two Roads
Diverge: Analyzing Growth Scenarios for the Twin Cities".
The study addresses the following issues: How should the region
accommodate its inevitable growth? Can the region grow and
retain its unique character at the same time? What are the
costs and benefits to the region of sprawling and smart growth;
The web site includes the study's full report and six supporting
The Sprawl Watch Clearinghouse is a resource center which
provides information, advice, and referrals on issues related
to sprawl, smart growth and livable communities. The
Clearinghouse helps advocates, grassroots organizations,
public officials, developers, planners, policymakers,
architects and others revitalize existing communities and
reduce urban sprawl. Support for Sprawl Watch Clearinghouse
is provided by the Turner Foundation, Inc., The David and Lucile
Packard Foundation and the Surdna Foundation.
= = = = = = = =
If you wish to join the Sprawl Watch mailing list,
send your request to <email@example.com>
using the precise following language.
In the message area of your e-mail screen:
subscribe <emailaddress> from Sprawl Watch newsletter.
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Leave the subject line blank, in the body of the message, type:
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Eco-Compass by Island Press
The Environmental Publisher
1 800 828 1302
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