The Association of Bay Area Governments (ABAG) was selected as the Bay Area regional partner for CivicSpark, a Governor's Initiative AmeriCorps program administered by the Local Government Commission. "The initiative is a win-win designed to generate jobs for recent college graduates, and the recruits are trained to help local governments implement programs to save energy, with the overall goal of protecting the environment," said Ezra Rapport, ABAG's Executive Director.
"CivicSpark is creating a model of climate action in the State of California," said Wade Crawfoot, Deputy Cabinet Secretary and Senior Advisor to the Governor. In the upcoming service year, CivicSpark Members in the Bay Area will assist local jurisdictions in developing and implementing energy audits, climate action plans, and other local climate change initiatives, and provide technical assistance to advance bicycling in San Mateo County.
As the Bay Area Regional Partner, ABAG is helping CivicSpark provide critical regional context and resources and assisting in member and project recruitment efforts. Together ABAG and CivicSpark are working to support local government sustainability projects to help communities respond to climate change.
Bay Area cities, towns, and counties can learn more about enrolling in the CivicSpark's program at www.civicspark.lgc.org. In collaboration with local government staff, the CivicSpark team will implement a needed climate-change project, while building long-term capacity to ensure the work is sustained after the project is completed.
Now recruiting for the 2015-16 service year, the program provides recent college graduates with a unique opportunity to gain professional experience, build important skills, and create a meaningful and lasting impact by supporting local government climate initiatives. For more information, go to www.civicspark.lgc.org.
In its first year, CivicSpark assisted 88 local government agencies in energy efficiency, solar procurement, urban forestry, sea level rise, climate action plan implementation, and related initiatives. To date, CivicSpark Members have provided over 40,000 hours of service to California's communities supporting a wide range of actions including eight climate or energy action plans; 17 climate action policies; 10 vulnerability assessments; eight greenhouse gas inventories; 12 community workshops, and energy benchmarking for four cities.
About Association of Bay Area Governments
Founded in 1961, ABAG is the official regional planning agency for 101 cities and towns, and nine counties of the Bay Area and is recognized as the first council of governments in California. ABAG was created by local governments to meet their planning and research needs related to land use, environmental and water resource protection, disaster resilience, energy efficiency and hazardous waste mitigation, and to provide risk management, financial services and staff training to local counties, cities and towns. www.abag.ca.gov
About Local Government Commission
The Local Government Commission (LGC) is a nonprofit organization fostering innovation in environmental sustainability, economic prosperity, and social equity by supporting local government policies and projects. The LGC is CivicSpark's overall program manager, providing statewide program infrastructure and overall member and local government support, coordinating training, and ensuring that performance goals are met. www.lgc.org
CivicSpark Bay Area Regional Partner
Association of Bay Area Governments
CivicSpark Project Manager
Local Government Commission