Buffalo, NY – The Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo announced that beginning today through Sunday eligible residents of Tonawanda may cast ballots for environmental improvements they would like for their community. The balloting is part of the Tonawanda Community Environmental Benefits Program (Tonawanda Community EBP), a grant program of the New York State Department of Conservation and Office of the Attorney General, which is making up to $1 million in grants available for projects that will improve the environment or public health in the Tonawanda community.
Residents of Tonawanda aged 16 and up and living in the zip codes 14207, 14216, 14150, 14217, 14223, 14120 and 14072 are eligible to cast one ballot — either online o r in-person – for up to six of their favorite projects in two funding tiers. Ballots will be accepted through Sunday, September 26.
Ballots can be cast online at TonawandaFund.org or in-person at one of the following locations:
- Elaine M. Panty Branch Library at 820 Tonawanda St, Buffalo, NY 14207
- Grand Island Memorial Library at 1715 Bedell Rd, Grand Island, NY 14072
- Kenmore Branch Library at 160 Delaware Rd, Kenmore, NY 14217
- North Tonawanda Public Library at 505 Meadow Dr, North Tonawanda, NY 14120
- North Park Branch Library at 975 Hertel Ave, Buffalo, NY 14216
- Brighton Place at 999 Brighton Rd, Tonawanda, NY 14150
Please check with each individual library for current hours of operation.
The primary goal of the Tonawanda Community EBP is to fund environmental projects that will improve the environment or public health in the Tonawanda community, geographically defined as: Town of Tonawanda, City of Tonawanda, North Tonawanda, Village of Kenmore, the southern part of the Town of Grand Island, as well as Buffalo’s Riverside neighborhood.
Here are the 25 projects that are on the ballot:
Tier 1: Grants ranging from $5,000 to $25,000 for small-to-medium scale projects.
- Citizen Coalition for Wildlife and Environment “Plant for Nature! Ecological Gardening for Community Health and Native Plant Giveaway”
- Citizen Science Community Resources, Inc. “Community Victory Garden”
- City of Tonawanda Public Library “City of Tonawanda Public Library Community Reading Garden”
- Erie County Department of Environment and Planning “Senior Focused E-Waste Collection”
- Erie County Department of Environment and Planning “Subsidized Community Rain Barrel/Compost Bin Sale”
- Kenilworth United Church of Christ “Rain Barrel and Herb/Tomato Planter Workshops”
- Kenmore-Town of Tonawanda Union Free School District “Tree Planting and Beautification at Edison Elementary School”
- Kenmore Village Improvement Society “Treasure Our Trees and Save the Bees”
- Project Pride of North Tonawanda “Manhattan Street Rain Garden Improvements”
- Thomas Edison PTA “Thomas Edison Parent-Teacher Association Community Garden”
- Town of Tonawanda Public Library “Rain Garden and Welcoming Outdoor Public Space at Kenilworth Library”
- Western New York Sustainable Business Roundtable (SBR) “Tonawanda Clean Production Leaders Campaign”
Tier 2: Grants ranging from $25,001 to $250,000 for projects larger in scale and scope.
- Black Rock Riverside (BRR) Alliance Inc. “The Greening of Old Town and Riverside”
- Citizen Science Community Resources, Inc. “Healthy Soils, Healthy Gardens, Healthy Communities”
- City of Tonawanda “City of Tonawanda Veterans’ Memorial Park Development Project”
- Cornell Cooperative Extension of Niagara County “Community in Bloom: Environmental Sustainability Education and Community Awareness”
- Cornell University “Native Ladybugs and Plants for Tonawanda: Restoration, Conservation, and Inspiration”
- Elmlawn Memorial Park Foundation “Elmlawn Memorial Park Arboretum”
- Niagara River Greenway Commission “Building Stewardship and Strengthening Pride of the Greater Tonawanda Community”
- North Tonawanda Botanical Gardens “North Tonawanda Botanical Gardens Green Infrastructure Phase I Project”
- North Tonawanda City School District “North Tonawanda City School District Community Garden Space”
- The Clean Air Coalition “Organizing Our Environmental Justice Values in Action”
- Town of Tonawanda “Kenney Field Park Multi-Use Trail, Inclusive Playground and Mural Wall”
- Village of Kenmore Department of Public Works “Kenmore Tree Planting Initiative”
- Western New York Land Conservancy “Creating New Nature Preserves, Improving Public Access, Restoring Wildlife Habitat, and Offering Environmental Education”
You can find the full project descriptions at www.tonawandafund.org. Again, eligible residents can cast one ballot September 20 – 26 either online or in-person. Decisions will be announced by the State in late 2021.
The Tonawanda Community EBP is an environmental grant program established from $1 million in funding obtained as part of a consent decree between the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, the New York Office of the Attorney General (collectively referred to as the State) and the Tonawanda Coke Corporation (TCC) regarding various environmental violations at TCC’s former facility in Tonawanda, New York.
The Tonawanda Community EBP grant process was designed to engage the community to assist the State in selecting projects for funding. Because of the State’s fiduciary obligation under the settlement, the State will make final selections of projects to receive funds from the program.