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Receive FREE Technical Assistance from the Syracuse University Environmental Finance Center

Tackle Your Water and Climate Resilience Challenges

Our team of technical assistance providers collectively bring over eight decades of experience helping communities across New York, New Jersey, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands execute their visions and goals. 

We offer a full range of services that are available at no cost to communities in our region. Our team of experts work hand-in-hand with elected officials, utility directors, and other community stakeholders to set priorities, develop projects, secure funding, and communicate with stakeholders at every step of the way.

Our Approach

Take the first step: Schedule a free consultation with our team

Our Services

Local governments and community-based groups in New York, New Jersey, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands are eligible for free services, subject to availability of resources. 


Community Engagement and Communication ➤

We elevate stakeholder voices for grounded, community-based solutions, while helping communities tell their own stories. We make complex data understandable and present information clearly and effectively to drive action.

  • Examples | Meeting facilitation, visioning sessions, print and digital outreach tools

Needs Assessment, Planning Studies, and Analysis ➤

We find the answers you need to take decisive action on your community water projects.

  • Examples | Focus groups, survey design, ordinance and plan review, mapping

Climate Resilience and Readiness ➤

We work to understand your vulnerabilities and help you plan for the future.

  • Examples | Scenario Planning, Hazard Mitigation, Climate Adaptation Planning

Training and Professional Development ➤

We support your utility, board, or staff in their professional development journeys.

  • Examples | Grant writing, workforce planning, leadership, and management

Project Planning, Development and Management ➤

We use the best available local data, analysis, and community engagement tactics to fully realize your water and climate goals, and we help you get the job done.

  • Examples | Pre-application development and prioritization, feasibility studies, lead service line inventories, environmental reviews, soliciting bids for professional engineering and construction services

Funding and Finance ➤

We help tackle your community’s financial challenges to support long-term sustainability and operations.

  • Examples | Rate and revenue analysis, financial planning, identification of funding and financing options, application support

Launching EFCN’s National Water Leadership Program

In April, the Environmental Finance Center Network’s (EFCN’s) Water Leadership Program announced the inaugural cohort of 38 water professionals from around the country who will participate in a three-month professional development program. The program aims to give rising water leaders the training and resources needed to face the challenges of utility management with confidence and improve the quality of life of their residents. Through the pilot program, water professionals will participate in three months of sessions focused on asset and data management, disaster resiliency and planning, environmental justice, strategic communications, culturally responsive leadership, and other subject areas that are critical in an increasingly diverse and rapidly changing water sector.

The program is funded by a grant awarded by the United States Environmental Protection Agency’s Innovative Water Infrastructure Workforce Development Program, which launched in 2021. The pilot program is one of several receiving a total of $3.8 million in funding to help build the water workforce and connect individuals to career opportunities in the drinking water and wastewater utility sector, as well as expand public awareness about job opportunities at drinking water and water treatment utilities.

Improving Water Quality in Puerto Rico

In Puerto Rico, more than 250,000 residents lack basic access to clean water or sanitation. While there are several barriers, one obstacle is a lack of coordination. How can we make sure all groups can  advance community goals of ensuring clean water? One community that is creating a new model for engagement is Las Curias, in greater San Juan.

Hybrid Funding Roundtable | State and Federal Funding, Financing, and Resources for Municipal Infrastructure Roundtable Discussions

Wednesday, March 29, 2023

Syracuse Center of Excellence, 727 E Washington St., Syracuse, NY 13210

We did not record the Hybrid Funding Roundtable on March 29th, 2023 but we encourage you to watch the recording from our virtual Fall Funding Roundtable available here.

Are you interested in learning more about funding and financing municipal infrastructure in your town or village? At the Syracuse University Environmental Finance Center (SU-EFC)’s upcoming hybrid event, you can learn about funding opportunities for safe and clean water management, renewable energy, and other community investments from state and federal agency representatives. Lunch will be provided.

In-person attendance is encouraged, but sessions will be livestreamed for hybrid viewing. If you would like to attend virtually, please indicate so on the registration form.

Presenters will include representatives from:

  • New York State Homes and Community Renewal
  • New York State Departments of State, Health, & Environmental Conservation
  • New York State Environmental Facilities Corporation
  • US Department of Agriculture, Rural Development

Resources for Download:

Webinar | Getting Started with NEPA: What communities need to know to engage with the National Environmental Policy Act

Monday, March 6, 2023

Online via Zoom | 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM EST

The National Environmental Policy Act is one the most far-reaching environmental laws in the United States. If you are new to environmental project development and planning, this webinar is a great place to begin learning about NEPA. Join us for a discussion of important NEPA background and processes, knowing when NEPA applies, and what NEPA means for local projects.

View/Download | Flyer


This webinar is presented to you by the NYS Tug Hill CommissionEA Engineering, Science, and Technology, Inc., PBC, and the Syracuse University Environmental Finance Center.

Webinar | Knowledge Transfer: How to make sure you know what you don’t know when you experience staffing changes

Tuesday, February 28, 2023

Online via Zoom | 6:00 PM – 7:00 PM EST

When employees leave their positions, they take with them all of the experience and knowledge that may have been essential to the work they did, and critical to your organization, community, and current and future employees. If that knowledge is lost, it can undermine organizational capacity, and cause disruptions in services and performance.

In this webinar, we will share examples of the impact of when knowledge transfer goals were not met, examples of ways to prevent too much knowledge loss, and will discuss completing a Position Knowledge Inventory. This allows organizations to get an idea of the knowledge and responsibilities required to fulfill all current positions in order to seamlessly transfer key information to future employees.

View/Download | Flyer

Resources for Download:


This webinar is presented to you by the NYS Tug Hill Commission, the Mohawk Valley Economic Development District, the Northern Oneida County Council of Governments, and the Syracuse University Environmental Finance Center.

Virtual Event: State and Federal Funding, Financing, and Resources for Municipal Infrastructure Roundtable Discussions

Date: Wednesday, October 26, 2022
Time: 1:00 PM – 3:00 PM EDT
Location: Online via Zoom

Description: Are you interested in learning more about funding and financing municipal infrastructure in your town or village? At the Syracuse University Environmental Finance Center (SU-EFC)’s upcoming webinar, you can learn about funding opportunities for safe and clean water management, renewable energy, and other community investments from state and federal agency representatives.

Presenters included representatives from:

  • New York State Homes and Community Renewal
  • New York State Departments of State, Health, & Environmental Conservation
  • New York State Environmental Facilities Corporation
  • US Department of Agriculture, Rural Development

Questions? Please contact Jes Eckerlinjeschn01@syr.edu

Presentation Slides and Resources to Download:


Who should attend:
Consulting engineers
Fiscal advisors
Water utility managers
Municipal board members
Elected officials
And others interested in clean and safe water for New York communities!


This virtual event is supported under a grant by the Rural Utilities Service, United States Department of Agriculture. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions expressed in the webinar are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of the Rural Utilities Service.


Webinar: Introduction to the New York State Wastewater Surveillance Network

Date: Wednesday, January 19, 2022
Time: 10:00am-11:00am EST


Description:

Scientific breakthroughs show that levels of coronavirus genetic material in wastewater systems can provide an unbiased measure of coronavirus transmission for a community to guide public policy and response to the pandemic.

This free, 1-hour webinar introduces the New York State wastewater-based epidemiology network. The network provides real-time monitoring of wastewater for coronavirus RNA. In collaboration with the New York State Department of Health and New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, Dr. David Larsen’s team is working to scale a wastewater surveillance network across New York State to aid the response to public health threats.

By January 2022, this new network aims to include at least one wastewater treatment plant in each New York State county to monitor for COVID-19. Join us to learn more about the current progress for monitoring wastewater for public health benefit and ask questions about the network during a facilitated discussion. Wastewater treatment staff are encouraged to attend.

For additional information, check out the Wastewater Surveillance Network website!

Presenters:

  • David A. Larsen, PhD MPH, Associate Professor and MPH Director, Falk College Department of Public Health, Syracuse University
  • Mary B. Collins, PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Environmental Studies, SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry
  • Dustin T. Hill, PhD, Postdoctoral Researcher, Falk College Department of Public Health, Syracuse University

Webinar Resources to Download:


Partners:

This webinar is organized by Syracuse University Falk College Department of Public Health and the SU Environmental Finance Center, and is co-sponsored by the New York Water Environment Association (NYWEA) and NYS Water Resources Institute.