Thanks to the foresight of the Grants Pass City Council, the Grants Pass Sustainability and Energy Action Task Force was established in late 2021. Following the direction of the Council, the 12-member volunteer citizen team developed a plan that would put city operations on a more sustainable footing, and simultaneously save the city budget and local taxpayers up to 2 million dollars annually. The plan, developed with engagement and support from the SOCAN Grants Pass Climate Action Team, was on the council agenda for approval at its meeting on Wednesday May 17.
After an enthusiastic introduction by Public Works Director and city staff liaison Jason Canady and a public comment period offering testimony for and against the plan, the city council discussed and approved the plan on a 7:1 vote. Public testimony was offered by SOCAN cofacilitator Alan Journet summarizing submitted written comments, members of the Taskforce (Dorothy Swain, Matt Rosen, and Grants Pass High School student member Kaylee Palmore) as well as a few opponents of the Sustainability Plan. The plan focuses on fourteen projects divided among four main areas: Buildings and Energy, Transportation, Materials and Consumption, and Natural Systems. Following the council vote, SOCAN co-facilitator Journet noted: “The Taskforce deserves kudos for developing such an effective plan, and the city council deserves applause for approving the plan. As the plan is actualized, the city will become more sustainable in its operations and will save considerably on operating costs. This well-developed plan underlines the reality that addressing the climate crisis and improving sustainability in our lifestyles can save money rather than impose on us huge costs.” The plan as approved is linked on the SOCAN website at: https://www.grantspassoregon.gov/DocumentCenter/View/27647/Sustainability-and-Energy-Action-Plan
In addition to approving the plan, the council established a Sustainability and Energy Advisory Committee. For further information on this committee, contact Kyrrha Sevco, Public Works Business manager, at 541- 450-6113 (firstname.lastname@example.org).