Letter from Van: urge congress to put BILLIONS into green jobs

Authors: greenforallblogger In the halls of Washington, D.C., there is an awful lot of "talk" these days about green-collar jobs. But in a few weeks, Congress will have the chance to put its money where its mouth is - for the first time. The Energy Bill authorized funding levels for both of these provisions. Now Congress needs to appropriate the money for them. As soon as two weeks from now, Appropriations committees in Congress will vote whether or not to fund these two vital programs. Click here to tell your representative to vote for full funding for the Green Jobs Act and the "Green Block Grant" Program in this year's Appropriations Bill. A fully funded Green Jobs Act will distribute $125 million per year to identify needed skills, develop training programs, and train workers for jobs in a range of green industries. That's enough money to train 30,000 people in green trades - every year. It targets a broad range of populations for eligibility, but it has a special focus on creating "green pathways out of poverty." In other words, this Act can connect the people who MOST need work - to the work that MOST needs to get done. A fully funded Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant Program will distribute $2 billion per year to cities and local governments for energy conservation, energy audits, fuel conservation programs, and the use of renewable energy. These "Green" block grants could create tens of thousands of green-collar jobs - accessible to low-income city residents who most need opportunities and careers. Click here to tell your representative to vote for full funding for the Green Jobs Act and the "Green Block Grant" Program in this year's Appropriations Bill. We must work hard to make sure that Congress understands the importance of funding these green-collar jobs programs. The budget submitted to Congress by the Bush Administration eliminates and under-funds a broad range of worthy programs. Therefore, Congress must wrestle with many competing priorities as its members attempt to make up for this shortfall and pass an Appropriations Bill for 2009. The Green Jobs Act and the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant Program are essential investments in green-collar job creation and job training. These programs will be fundamental to building an inclusive green economy strong enough to lift people out of poverty. Click here to send an email to your representatives and senators telling them to support appropriations for these critical green-collar jobs programs. Thank you for taking action. Sincerely, Van Jones President, Green For All

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