OMB has issued initial guidance to agencies on carrying out the Biden administration’s Justice40 initiative, whose goal is that 40 percent of the overall benefits of certain investments flow to historically disadvantaged communities.
Memo M-21-28 defines covered programs as those involving climate change, clean energy and energy efficiency, clean transportation, affordable and sustainable housing, remediation and reduction of legacy pollution, clean water and infrastructure, and training and workforce development related to those areas.
Covered investments include various forms of grants, direct payments, procurement of goods or services for the government’s use, staffing costs, and other investments under covered programs.
The memo also defines characteristics of communities that qualify as “historically marginalized and overburdened by pollution and underinvestment in housing, transportation, water and wastewater infrastructure, and health care.”
It describes actions required of agencies that manage those programs, including identifying the benefits of those programs, determining how they distribute benefits, and calculating and reporting on reaching the 40-percent goal. “Additional guidance is forthcoming,” it adds.