Keeping you up to date on the community planning, economic development,
and environmental planning programs at H-GAC.
Your Monthly News & Updates
Upcoming Events
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Housing for the Future: A Regional Conversation - August 17

Join H-GAC for Housing for the Future: A Regional Conversation from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Friday, August 17, at H-GAC Conference Room B, Second Floor. 

Housing experts and local officials from across the region will discuss a broad vision for the region's housing and  specific strategies that can be used to increase housing availability, quality, and choice across rural, suburban, and urban communities. 

Breakfast begins at 8:30 a.m. Registration is requested. For more information, contact Amy Combs at 713-993-4544 or Clint McManus at 832-681-2513

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Coastal Communities Open House - August 22

H-GAC will host a Coastal Communities program outreach open house from 2 to 4 p.m. Wednesday, August 22, at Brazoria County Library--Alvin Branch, 105 S. Gordon Street, Alvin.
Representatives from communities, organizations, homeowner associations, civic groups, businesses, and apartment complexes are invited to
  • meet outreach partners and water quality organizations;
  • talk about ongoing water quality projects;
  • learn about resources for working with residents;
  • pick up samples of free materials to distribute to residents; and
  • visit with Coastal Communities project staff.


For more information or to reserve a table, contact Becki Begley at 713-993-2410. To learn more about Coastal Communities, visit

Regional Recycling Roundtable - August 23

The next Regional Recycling Roundtable will be from 10 a.m. to noon Thursday, August 23, at H-GAC Conference Room A, Second Floor. The topic will be tire recycling. Presenters will be Anthony Showen, CEO of Treadwright Tires, and Henrik Olesen, CEO of Genan Inc.

This roundtable series provides education/outreach to bring new ideas and knowledge to local governments, solid waste businesses, and interested residents on a wide range of recycling-related topics.

Registration is requested. For more information, contact Becki Begley at 713-993-2410.

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Future of Retail: Your Community Destination - September 21

Save the date for Future of Retail: Your Community Destination from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Friday, September 21, at H-GAC Conference Room B, Second Floor.

At this half-day workshop, participants will gain insights from experts on retail trends and future opportunities and learn how small communities are attracting and retaining retail tenants while rebranding their retail destinations through practical policies, programs and projects. 

Breakfast begins at 8:30 a.m. Registration is requested. For more information, contact Anita Hollmann at 713-993-4587.

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Bringing Back Main Street Roundtable - October 23

Save the date for H-GAC's next Bringing Back Main Street Roundtable scheduled from 9:30 a.m. to noon Tuesday, October 23. The location and topic are to be determined. 

H-GAC hosts quarterly roundtables to help local governments, chambers of commerce, and economic development interests promote the economic revitalization of downtown areas.

For more information, contact Joey Kaspar at 713-993-4547.

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Parks and Natural Areas Awards Application Open Until September 28

H-GAC will accept Parks and Natural Areas (PNA) Awards applications through Friday, September 28.
PNA awards honor projects in four categories: Projects Over $500,000; Projects Under $500,000; Planning Process; and Policy Tools. Winning entries serve as models for planning and project implementation for parks and natural areas in the region.
Winners will be notified in December. The awards ceremony and half-day parks event will be in February 2019. For more information, contact Andrea Tantillo at 832-681-2507.

Partner Announcements
2018 Texas Environmental Leadership Awards
The Texas Environmental Leadership Awards recognize individuals, communities, organizations, and businesses developing and maintaining programs involving recycling, composting, sustainable materials management, public education and outreach, and special event recycling. The complete awards nomination packet with specific awards and criteria is available. Applications are due Friday, August 17. Award winners will be honored as part of the Texas Recycling Summit on the evening of Tuesday, October 30.

2019 Texas Environmental Excellence Awards
Each year, the Governor's Office and commissioners from the Texas Commission on
Environmental Quality honor the state's most outstanding environmental projects through the Texas Environmental Excellence Awards. Winners from across the state exemplify how Texans set the standard for ensuring clean air, clean water, and the safe management of waste. The application period for the 2019 awards is now open. Winners will be honored at an awards banquet May 15, 2019, where videos of the winning projects will be featured. Applications will be accepted through Friday, September 28.
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Texas Rural Leadership Program
The Texas Rural Leadership Program (TRLP) offers leadership development training in communities through its TRLP Leaders-In-Action Workshop Series. TRLP partners with Texas A&M AgriLife Extension and Texas A&M University Public Partnership & Outreach. For more information about what TRLP offers, visit or contact Craig Rotter at 979-587-1992.

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Community Resilience Collaborative
The Community Resilience Collaborative (CRC) provides technical assistance for planning, outreach and education aimed at coastal communities, particularly resource managers, land use planners and emergency managers who deal with hazard mitigation. Planning is emphasized to address critical land use, environmental, hazard mitigation and disaster recovery issues through coastal planning. Priority is placed on providing planning assistance to low-capacity, low-resource and/or underrepresented communities. For more information regarding the CRC, contact Heather Wade at 979-845-3855.
More Upcoming Events
Center for Houston's Future Summer Salons
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The Center for Houston's Future is hosting three monthly summer salons at 7:30 a.m. at the Junior League of Houston, 1811 Briar Oaks Lane, Houston. These casual breakfast conversations will bring big-picture thinkers and regional experts together with broader audiences for an extended discussion on regional issues, with a focus on the next steps for creating a sustainable and competitive Houston region. Registration is $30 per person and includes a seated breakfast. Upcoming salons include Follow the Construction: Development in the Post-Harvey World, Wednesday, August 8; and Follow the Big Ideas: Smart Cities, Wednesday, September 13.

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America Walks Free Webinars 
America Walks is hosting free monthly webinars at 1 p.m. the second Wednesday of each month. These webinars look to expand knowledge, highlight success stories, and share new tools and resources. Registration is required. Upcoming webinars include Act Fast: The Growing Call of Slower Speeds, August 8; Pedestrians are People Too: The Criminalization of Walking, September 12; Walk Into Action: Walking and Walkability Policy Issues, October 10; Where Do We Go Next? Mapping and Tracking in the Future, November 14; and On a Sustainable Path: The Role of Walkability in Addressing Climate Change, December 12.

Harvey Research Symposium
University of Texas Marine Science Institute logo
The University of Texas Marine Science Institute is hosting a free Harvey Research Symposium from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursday, August 23, at Port Aransas Civic Center, 710 W. Avenue A, Port Aransas. Scientists, students, coastal managers, and elected officials will share research with oral presentations on how the hurricane has affected the coastal environments and communities of the Gulf of Mexico. The meeting is limited to 200 people, and registration is required. Abstracts for presentations will be accepted through Friday, August 3. For more information, contact Jace Tunell at 361-749-3046.

Gulf of Mexico Alliance Wednesday Webinars 
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The  Gulf of Mexico Alliance (GOMA) is hosting a Wednesday Webinar series at 2 p.m. the last Wednesday of every other month. Join to learn about resources and projects from around the Gulf. Preregistration is not required. Upcoming webinars include Tool Highlights (Dave Reed), September 26; and HAB Detection (Kate Hubbard), November 28. 

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Urban Riparian and Stream Restoration Program Workshop
Texas Riparian Association is hosting the Urban Riparian and Stream Restoration Program workshop from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Thursday, August 16, at The Recreation Center at Bear Branch Park - Live Oak Room, 5310 Research Forest Drive, The Woodlands. The training will focus on natural design processes for stream restoration projects. Registration is limited to the first 40 people. The cost is $100 and includes all training materials, lunch, and a certificate of completion. Registration is required by Monday, August 13.

STAR Texas Recycling Summit
STAR Summit 2018 logo - shaped like a sand dollar - words STAR Texas Recycling Summit - Galveston October 28-31 2018
Registration is now open for the State of Texas Alliance for Recycling (STAR) Texas Recycling Summit 2018 October 28-31 at the 7 Hope Boulevard, Galveston. This is the only state conference dedicated entirely to recycling and waste diversion activities in Texas. It's also an opportunity to network with professionals from the recycling industry to learn, collaborate, share successes, and support recycling efforts.

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Texas A&M AgriLife Extension, Master Gardeners Composter Training
Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service and Fort Bend County Master Gardeners Association are hosting a three-day composter specialist event from 10 a.m. to noon December 5-7 at the AgriLife Extension Office, 1402 Band Road, Suite 100, Rosenberg. This training is sanctioned by the Texas Master Gardener program, and the 24 attendees will receive the title of "Composter Specialist." More information, including an agenda and registration, is available online.
News and Notes
Scenic City Certification Program
Seabrook, West University Place Awarded Scenic City Re-Certification

Seabrook and West University Place have been awarded recertified Scenic City Certification by the Scenic City Certification Program of Scenic Texas.
Using tools provided through the Scenic City Certification Program, Texas municipalities can assess the status of their scenic infrastructure standards, plan enhancement projects, and reap the economic benefits of good design, unique character, and livability. The Scenic City Certification Program defines optimal standards for a Texas city's scenic infrastructure. Cities apply for an objective evaluation of existing ordinances against this standard, then use the evaluation as a guide for future planning. Through a points-based system recognizing detailed, clearly written, and enforceable ordinance language, applicant cities may earn one of five levels of certification.
Other cities in the region with Scenic City Certification include El Campo, Friendswood, Houston, Pearland, Magnolia, Missouri City, Nassau Bay, Richmond, Sealy, Sugar Land, and Webster.
The Scenic City application period for 2019 opens January 1, 2019. Any interested Texas municipality may go online now to review the Program standards and application process at

Funding Sources
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Texas Coastal and Waterway Community Recycling Grant

The Recycling Partnership and The Coca-Cola Foundation have opened the new coastal and waterways community grant program to help address the challenge of waste in waterways and help improve the collection of recyclables for reuse. The program will provide new carts with lids for curbside recycling programs located on the coastal shorelines.
The deadline to apply for the first round of funding is Friday, September 21. Anyone interested in this program should contact Rob Taylor before applying.

H-GAC Septic System Repair/ Replacement Funding Program

H-GAC has funding available for the repair or replacement of failing traditional or aerobic on-site sewage facilities (septic systems) in the H-GAC service region. 

Funds are available to homeowners who meet certain income restrictions. No cost sharing is required. For more information, contact Will Merrell at 713-993-4594.

US Economic Development Administration logo
EDA Harvey Recovery Grants

The U.S. Economic Development Administration's (EDA) Austin regional office received $129,119,000 in supplemental funding for disaster relief and is actively seeking projects to help communities in the Houston-Galveston region recover from Hurricane Harvey. 

The recently released Notice of Funding Opportunity outlines the requirements, which include the following:
  • Projects require a 20 percent match, which can include in-kind contributions
  • Typical projects will range from $1-$2.5 million
  • First round of 14-15 applications anticipated to be funded by September 2018, with 1 or 2 subsequent rounds of funding
  • Must demonstrate a nexus to Harvey, in terms of economic recovery or resilience
  • Eligible applicants include governments, nonprofits, and universities
For more information, contact Robert Peche of the EDA.

Tree with $ Money
H-GAC has compiled a list of local, regional, state, federal, and private funding sources for local governments and other organizations. H-GAC also maintains a list of ongoing funding opportunities for parks improvements.

If you know of a funding opportunity, forward it to Andrea Tantillo.

All content, including links to websites, is for informational purposes only. Users of this content are responsible for checking its accuracy, currency, and suitability.
Community and Environmental Planning Programs
GIS Globes
Mapping Applications
Looking for interactive applications or GIS data related to the H-GAC Community and Environmental Planning Department? Visit H-GAC's interactive applications web page to see the latest information, including Census, Regional Forecast, and more.
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H-GAC has a Facebook page where information about current and upcoming events is posted. Please visit and like H-GAC's page. While there, visit other H-GAC pages on Facebook, including Recycling, Trash Bash, Regional Data LabBacteria Implementation Group (BIG), West Fork Watersheds Partnership, and Cedar Bayou Watershed Partnership.

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Find the latest information about activities around the region at H-GAC's Twitter feed @hgaccog. H-GAC's water resources program also offers Twitter updates on water quality issues in the region @HGACwater.
Banner Photo by Kathy Janhsen: A toddler enjoys playing in the dry bottom detention in a neighborhood in Cypress. Offering storm water detention as a natural area and amenity for a community is a best management practice supported by the Parks and Natural Areas Roundtable at H-GAC. The roundtable promotes an annual awards program in the region. More information is available in this newsletter.

Would you like us to consider featuring your municipality, program, or regional photo on the C&E Planning Update banner? Just forward Andrea Tantillo your picture, along with some information about the subject and the photographer, and you might see it in a future month's newsletter.  
Houston-Galveston Area Council, PO Box 22777, Houston, TX 77227-2777
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