two alligators
Color blocks depicting park scenes and words Parks and Nature Areas Awards
Parks and Natural Areas Awards Application Period Now Open

H-GAC's 15th annual Parks and Natural Areas (PNA) Awards program is now accepting applications.
The Parks and Natural Areas 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. The application period will be open until 5 p.m. Wednesday, September 30. 

An online application guide is available. No funding is associated with this awards program.
Winners will be notified in December and recognized in 2021. For more information, contact Andrea Tantillo at 832-681-2507.
Livable Centers with shadow of people walking
Take an Online Walking Tour of the Montrose Livable Centers Area

H-GAC is offering an online Montrose Livable Centers Self-guided Neighborhood Walking TourThe tour will identify 19 key existing historical and other neighborhood assets throughout Montrose, while highlighting certain elements and their relation to the ongoing Livable Centers Project.

The goal is to share findings from our existing conditions and needs assessment research and get feedback on what was found, what people love most about these existing and historical elements, and how people hope to see these parts of Montrose preserved or improved as a part of the Livable Centers Concept Plan. People can take this tour from their couch, or decide to walk or bike the entire route or sections of it.

H-GAC's Livable Centers Program works with local communities to reimagine auto-focused infrastructure, policies, and programs to be more multi-modal friendly.
Celebrate Biking in September

This September 2020, Commute Solutions invites the region's residents who commute by biking to organize a ride to work. Teleworkers are encouraged to bike anywhere. 
If you bike, please participate in the #BiketoWork Social Media Campaign. Post a picture with the hashtag #bikeanywhere on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or LinkedIn and tag H-GAC @HouGalvAreaCog.
Also, Houston BCycle is offering free rides on Tuesday, September 22. Visit any BCycle station (see a map here) and enter code 92220 for a free 30-minute trip. Vanpoolers can participate in the METRO STAR scavenger hunt.
Learn more about safety tips and helpful resources by visiting and
Upcoming Events
Color blocks depicting park scenes and words Parks and Nature Areas
Parks and Natural Areas Roundtable - September 14 (Online)

The next Parks and Natural Areas Roundtable will be from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. Monday, September 14.

The roundtable will be online.  

Attendees will hear from Daveyon Edwards, Keep Angleton Beautiful Coordinator, who will share some tips and tricks on researching and applying for funding. There will be time for a robust roundtable conversation about ongoing and upcoming activities and events in your areas.

The roundtable meets the second Monday of March, July, and September with field trips scheduled in May and November. This group is open to anyone interested in participating. 
Registration is required. For more information, contact Andrea Tantillo at 832-681-2507. 
Parking with livable centers workshop above and September 17 and 28 below
Parking Workshop - September 17 and 18 (Online)

Whether in a small town or big city, parking is a key component to how we conduct business in the Houston-Galveston region. The H-GAC's annual Land Use/Transportation Workshop will focus on Facilitating Parking for Livable Centers. This year, the event will be presented online on Friday, September 18, for a half-day workshop and will kick off with a virtual evening forum on Thursday, September 17.

Separate registration is required for each event.

From 4:30 to 6 p.m. Thursday, September 17, explore how the current environment and future innovations are affecting how we plan for parking and how parking may change how we develop in the Houston-Galveston region. Registration is required.

From 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Friday, September 18, learn how to invigorate Main Streets, Downtowns, or Town Centers with parking solutions that leverage communities’ existing resources, enhance community context, and build community partnerships that incentivize new investment based on community needs. Registration is required. 

For more information, e-mail [email protected].
spring creek watershed partnership logo with frees and water in the middle
Spring Creek Watershed Partnership Meeting - October 8 (Online)

H-GAC and the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality will hold a public meeting for the Spring Creek Watershed Partnership from 2 to 4 p.m. Thursday, October 8. 

The meeting will be online. 
The purpose of the meeting is to discuss water quality issues impacting the Spring Creek watershed in Grimes, Harris, Montgomery, and Waller counties. Local stakeholders are invited to participate in the Spring Creek Watershed Partnership, which will develop a watershed protection plan to address these challenges.
Registration is required. For more information, contact Rachel Windham.
CWI Logo
Clean Waters Initiative (CWI) Workshop - October 15 (Online)

H-GAC's next Clean Waters Initiative workshop will be from 8:30 to 11 a.m. Thursday, October 15. 

The workshop will be online.
The CWI program offers workshops that help local governments, landowners, and residents develop effective strategies to reduce pollution in area waterways.

Registration is required. For more information, contact Brian Sims at 713-993-2438.
Bringing Back Main Street Logo
Rural and Small Town Downtown Revitalization Summit - October 27 (Online)

H-GAC's Bringing Back Main Street initiative will host the second annual Rural and Small Town Downtown Revitalization Summit from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Tuesday, October 27.

This event will be online.

Planned topics include doing business during COVID-19, including ways to attract visitors and residents to downtowns, ways to keep businesses thriving, and ways to measure success through available data.

Registration is required. For more information, contact Cheryl Mergo at 713-993-4520.
Bacteria Implementation Group (BIG) Annual Meeting - October 27 (Online)

The Bacteria Implementation Group (BIG) Fall Meeting will be from 1 to 3 p.m. Tuesday, October 27.

This meeting will be online.
Topics will include the 2020 annual report, BIG Implementation Plan revisions, and Total Maximum Daily Load updates.  
Registration is required. For more information, contact Steven Johnston at 832-681-2579.
Partner Announcements
Flood Mitigation Project Clearinghouse Now Available 
The Texas Water Development Board, the Texas General Land Office, and the Texas Division of Emergency Management launched a website with information on flood mitigation funding opportunities for Texas communities. The site includes an online Request for Information Form that entities can submit to get feedback on what state and federal financial assistance programs could be the best fit for their flood mitigation needs. The site also includes funding opportunities, general project and entity eligibility by program, upcoming events related to flood mitigation financial assistance, and other resources. For local governments interested in using the clearinghouse to access project ideas, visit the Texas Flood Clearinghouse website or call 512-463-8725. 
2021 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 2021 awards is now open. See the winner videos for 2020. Applications will be accepted through Friday, September 25
Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Resilient Texas Website 
Texas communities working on long-term recovery from Hurricane Harvey can find Infoshare resources at Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service's new Resilient Texas website. Visit the site for both new and previous information shared in weekly emails. FEMA's Texas Recovery Office partnered with AgriLife on the site and will continue to provide resources both in email and for the website. 
Free Technical Assistance Available for Brownfields 
Kansas State University Technical Assistance to Brownfields program provides free site re-use planning and visioning services, and site inventory and prioritization assistance to local governments that don't have the resources to get this done on their own. This assistance is usually enough to "start the ball rolling," for developing strategies and to attract funds to do more extensive planning work and to redevelop brownfields. For more information, contact Blase Leven, the Program Coordinator at Kansas State University, at 785-532-0780. 
Get Involved With Trash Free Texas 
Trash Free Texas strives to keep trash out of area waterways by working with communities and organizations across the state to connect people to places that need routine litter cleanup activities. Local governments and organizations can get involved by using the Adopt-a-Spot online interactive mapping application
More Upcoming Events
Bayou Preservation Association 17th Annual Symposium
The Bayou Preservation Association will host its 17th Annual Symposium online October 1 and 2. The two-day event will be from 8 a.m. to noon each day. Join key policy makers, regulators, resource agencies, scientists, and engineers in a discussion about how ​diversity contributes to the longevity and growth of our community as well as our unique bayou systems. Tickets start at $10, and sponsorship opportunities are still available.
Cursive Rethinking Recycling on a blue field of green stars with the State of Texas Alliance for Recycling stylized star in the middle.
STAR Recycling and Composting Summit
Registration is now open for the State of Texas Alliance for Recycling annual recycling and composting conferences. This year, the two popular events will be combined in a single all-virtual event October 5-7. The Rethinking Recycling event will feature online tracts and panels covering the most pertinent topics in the recycling and composting industries.
DEA National Takeback
Drug Enforcement Administration National Prescription Drug Take Back Day
The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) National Prescription Drug Take Back Day will be from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, October 24. Check the DEA website in early October for area drop-off locations. The collection event provides a safe, convenient, and responsible means of disposing of prescription drugs, while also educating the general public about the potential for abuse of medications and environmental contamination. Law enforcement agencies interested in hosting a collection site should call the point of contact for this area.
News and Notes
Harvey Households Covered by FEMA Group Flood Insurance Need to Buy Standard Insurance by October 24

The Federal Emergency Management Agency is reminding Texans that FEMA provided Group Flood Insurance Policies (GFIP) to 6,704 households across counties impacted by Harvey.

These three-year policies end Saturday, October 24, so policyholders must plan now to switch to a standard flood insurance policy to ensure continuous coverage. Those who received a GFIP policy as part of their FEMA disaster assistance after Harvey but don't buy a standard flood insurance policy won't receive federal disaster assistance for home repairs if they experience another flood event.
Funding Sources
Funding Sources

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 and economic recovery resources.

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.
More Information and Programs
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.

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 RecyclingTrash BashRegional Data LabBacteria Implementation Group (BIG), and West Fork Watersheds Partnership.

Find the latest information about activities around the region at H-GAC's Twitter feed @HouGalvAreaCog. H-GAC's water resources program also offers Twitter updates on water quality issues in the region @HGACwater.
Unless otherwise noted, all meetings scheduled at H-GAC are at 3555 Timmons Lane, Houston, Texas.

Banner Photo: Alligators at Brazos Bend State Park.
Would you like us to consider featuring your municipality, program, or regional photo on the C&E Planning Update banner? Just forward your picture to Andrea Tantillo, 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