Investment and Innovation grants are intended to build lasting, private-sector capacity to reduce waste through reuse, recycling, composting or energy creation from discarded materials in the Metro region. They seek to both strengthen local efforts to reduce the amount and toxicity of waste while generating positive benefits for communities of color and other communities that have historically not benefitted from the garbage and recycling system.
Program grants are awarded to support personnel costs, operations and equipment associated with new or expanded programming at for-profit businesses or non-profit organizations. Program grants require the applicant to provide a match of at least 20 percent of the grant amount in cash, in-kind support or both. A second round of program grants funding will be awarded in December 2019.
Investment and Innovation capital grants are currently being reviewed and awards will be announced in December 2019. Capital grants are up to $750,000 for infrastructure and equipment.
The 2019-20 Investment and Innovation program grant recipients are:
Wood shop expansion
Grant amount: $58,772
Match amount: $14,516
Total investment: $73,288
Salvage Works will expand its custom furniture wood shop to enable the company to transform more reclaimed lumber into high-quality furniture. The grant funds will purchase equipment to bring re-saw services in-house, which will enable Salvage Works to double the tons of reclaimed wood that it processes into furniture from house deconstructions (an additional approximately 45 tons of wood per year). The wood shop expansion will help the company expand its product line to use a wider range of reclaimed lumber. The company expects to add two full-time staff that will be exclusively recruited from technical training programs serving youth of color and people with barriers to employment.
Equity and Efficiency in Reuse Operations
Grant amount: $75,000
Match amount: $16,820
Total investment: $91,820
The ReBuilding Center will develop a centralized processing area and pricing system as part of a larger project to significantly improve inventory and resale systems by 2021. The suite of proposed improvements will enable the ReBuilding Center to more effectively receive, process, and sell reusable building materials to the community at a low price. Grant funds will be used to hire two new salvage specialists for product research, merchandising, pricing, lumber processing and customer assistance. The organization is currently undergoing an equity assessment to help shape organizational policies and staff and board training.
Lovett Deconstruction, Inc.
Full House Deconstruction Training Program
Grant amount: $66,316
Match amount: $16,579
Total investment: $82,895
Lovett Deconstruction will scale up the company’s deconstruction services by acquiring the tools and equipment needed to recruit, train and outfit an additional deconstruction team. With a new crew the company estimates it can deconstruct an additional 12 homes per year, diverting thousands of cubic yards of materials from entering the waste stream. Metals from their deconstructed homes are recycled and reusable materials are transferred to retail venues in the Metro region. Lovett’s expansion will create four jobs, and the company has committed to leveraging existing partnerships with community organizations to recruit and hire a diverse workforce. Lovett provides all of its staff with diversity and equity training and reimbursement for English as a Second Language and work-related trainings.