New Recovery FAQ

We've been digging hard for answers to questions about how to leverage stimulus funds for green jobs. This FAQ is designed to answer some of those common questions.

General Questions

Q: What is the difference between the "Economic Recovery Package", the "Recovery", the "Stimulus", and "ARRA"?

A: They all refer to the same piece of legislation - the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, a $787 billion bill signed by the President on February 17th, 2009.

Q: Where can I learn more about the Economic Recovery Package and green jobs?
A: Read the Bringing Home the Green Recovery User's Guide for an in-depth look at green opportunities in the Recovery Package. Sign up for our Green Recovery Email Alerts for important updates and opportunities. Ask questions and share what you're doing on our Recovery Discussion Forum.

Q: Why is it important to implement a green recovery for all? I have a lot going on.
A: The talk is over. Now there is real money for real green jobs available to every community in the country. If we leave it up to local politics and business as usual, we could end up with low-road jobs going to big corporations and very few family-supporting jobs and job training for disadvantaged communities. Because things are moving so fast, we have a LOT of ability to influence the debate. If you want to make an impact but don't have a lot of time, use our LTE tool to submit a letter to the editor of your local newspaper calling for a green recovery for all.

Questions About Holding Public Officials Accountable

Q: How do I find out how much money my city or town stands to get from the Recovery Act for green jobs?
A: There are more than $60 billion for green initiatives in the Recovery Act. Every municipality and state is eligible to apply for funds. You can look up how much your city is getting for Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant funding here. For Weatherization Assistance Program funding, find your Community Action Agency and ask them what their allocation was from the state WAP plan due May 12th to DOE. For other Recovery programs, you can try looking up the program's Recovery website to investigate. Some cities have a website where you can track Recovery funds like this Philadelphia Recovery site. The STAR coalition keeps this list of city Recovery websites. They also have this state-by-state overview of accountability efforts.

Q: What should I ask for? I don't feel comfortable meeting with my elected officials unless I know what I'm asking for.
A: We are asking our public officials to implement a green recovery for all. That means using Recovery funds to create quality jobs with good benefits, to ensure accountability and transparency in the process, and to create green pathways out of poverty through training, services, and targeted hiring of low-income people, people of color, and women. Ask your local leaders to sign the Local Government Commitment, which includes these three important asks. If you are looking for more detailed policy recommendations, take a look at these suggestions from the California Green Stimulus Coalition.

Q: What program should I focus on? There are many different green programs receiving stimulus funding.
A: While there are 29 different federal agencies receiving Recovery funds for dozens of programs, Green For All is mainly focusing on three programs with good potential to create green jobs and training - The Weatherization Assistance Program ($5 billion allocated), the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant (EECBG)program ($3.2 billion), and the Green Jobs Training Competitive Grant Program ($500 million). Your city has a deadline of June 25th to submit their plan on EECBG funds to the Department of Energy. Take a look at the Cool Cities EECBG Toolkit for some guidance on how you can influence that. Resources on the WAP, EECBG, and Green Jobs Training programs are in our Recovery Resource Center. If you want to investigate options more broadly, take a look at this complete list of Recovery Programs and their purpose. Depending on your interest, you may be interested in other programs such as housing, transportation, or workforce funds. For a comprehensive analysis of green jobs funding in the Recovery, read our Bringing Home the Green Recovery User's Guide.

Q: What is the timeline for when funds will be made available?
A: For a list of important deadlines for 28 green-related Recovery programs, see our Timeline for Green ARRA Programs. A key deadline to look out for is June 25th, when states and cities must submit their Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant plans to the Department of Energy. While it is not a hard deadline, the Recovery Act gives preference to activities that can be started and completed expeditiously, including a goal of using at least 50 percent of the funds made available by it for activities that can be initiated not later than June 17, 2009. Competitive grants, additional program allocations, and other funds will still be available for between two and ten years after the Act was passed.

Q: Who is in charge of implementing Recovery Act funds?
A: The answer is different for each program, but Mayors, City Councils, and Governors play an important role. To see a list of who is in charge of Recovery funds for 28 different green-related programs and when applications for funds will be due, see our Timeline for Green ARRA Programs.

Q: How can I get a seat at the table in this process to affect my city's Recovery plan?
A: For tips on meeting with your local officials, read ourRecovery Toolkit. For added political leverage, ask organizations to sign on to the Community Commitment and ask a public official to sign the Local Government Commitment and be a champion for your cause.

Questions about Applying to Recovery Act Funds

Q:I am a business owner or a training provider wanting to do renewable energy, energy efficiency, or other green projects. How do I apply for Recovery Act funds?
A: Our Bringing Home the Green Recovery User's Guide includes starting-point information about funding for green jobs worker training in energy efficiency and renewable energy (p. 25), for the Weatherization Assistance Program (p. 28), and for Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grants (p. 29).

If you have questions that aren't answered in this FAQ, please send them to and we'll do our best to help you out.

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