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2008-05-29 15:07:43

NAR Grants Support Local Association Smart Growth Initiatives

The National Assn. of REALTORS® has awarded $48,262 to 13 local and state REALTOR® associations through the Smart Growth Action Grants program. The grants are awarded to help associations implement smart growth programs and activities that position REALTORS® as leaders in improving their communities.

NAR established the Smart Growth Action Grant program in 2005 to increase the effectiveness of REALTOR® associations in creating livable communities. Individual grants of up to $5,000 are awarded twice per year; more than 92 grants totaling $264,000 have been awarded through the program. Funds can be used to further community planning activities or host events such as a conference or speakers’ series on topics ranging from transportation and zoning to open space preservation and school development.

“REALTORS® build communities and care about improving them through smart growth initiatives,” said NAR President Dick Gaylord, a broker with RE/MAX Real Estate Specialists in Long Beach, Calif. “NAR’s smart growth grants help REALTORS® and their local and state associations become more involved in creating livable communities that meet the changing demands of their clients and customers and result in more walkable, mixed-use communities with a wider range of housing options.”

The following 13 REALTOR® associations were named Smart Growth Action Grant recipients:

Arcadia Assn. of REALTORS® (Arcadia, Calif.): $5,000 to host a green building seminar and expo to help educate REALTORS® about green building initiatives.

Biloxi Ocean Springs Assn. of REALTORS® (Biloxi, Miss.): $1,500 to bring REALTORS® from several cities together to develop a learning network about initiating smart growth activities in each community.

East Metro Assn. of REALTORS® (Gresham, Ore.): $5,000 to work with the city of Damascus to educate REALTORS® about a new smart growth plan being developed for the area.

Fremont County Board of REALTORS® (Lander, Wyo.): $5,000 to support efforts with the city of Riverton to create a citizen-based plan for developing a housing component of the City’s Master Plan.

Gulf Coast Assn. of REALTORS® (Gulfport, Miss.): $3,000 to train REALTORS®, appraisers, developers and community leaders on the provisions of recently adopted SmartCode zoning plans of five Gulf Coast communities.

Hattiesburg Area Assn. of REALTORS® (Hattiesburg, Miss.): $5,000 to support smart growth training for local planners, leaders, engineers, and government officials as well as a meeting to explore the role of economic development in communities and how it relates to smart growth.

Hernando County Assn. of REALTORS® (Brooksville, Fla.): $1,642 to produce a series of workshops on affordable housing and the future needs of the community.

Jackson Assn. of REALTORS® (Jackson, Miss.): $3,500 to hold a meeting between REALTORS®, developers, builders, and municipal leaders to discuss the role each plays in the creation of housing. The goal of the meeting is to increase REALTOR® involvement in future decisions regarding housing developments and their locations.

Northeast Mississippi Board of REALTORS® (Tupelo, Miss.): $3,000 to host a meeting for REALTORS® to discuss urban flight and develop an action plan to revitalize the city’s downtown.

Northwest Mississippi Assn. of REALTORS® (Nesbit, Miss.): $3,000 to support a five-year smart growth training program for county planning commissioners.

Pearl River Board of REALTORS® (Picayune, Miss.): $3,500 to educate REALTORS® about smart growth principles to influence more sustainable development projects.

Reading-Burks Assn. of REALTORS® (Wyomissing, Pa.): $5,000 to work with the Berks County Smart Growth Alliance to establish a Smart Growth municipal assistance program and facilitate adoption of smart growth principles.

San Luis Obispo Assn. of REALTORS® (San Luis Obispo, Calif.): $4,120 to host a one-day training for REALTORS® and the public on green building and smart growth planning. The event will include a field trip to local infill housing sites.

For additional information on NAR Smart Growth Action Grants or to download an application form, visit www.realtor.org/smartgrowth. Applications for the next round of grants are due October 3, 2008.

The National Assn. of REALTORS®, “The Voice for Real Estate,” is America’s largest trade association, representing 1.2 million members involved in all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate industries.

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