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CSAC Challenge Award Recognizes Climate Action

people sitting at a table at the climate launch

(September 2014) The California State Association of Counties has awarded Alameda County a 2014 Challenge Award for ongoing efforts to engage 20 County agencies in implementing the County’s Climate Action Plan for Government Services and Operations. Watch video.

The Challenge Awards recognize California county governments that have developed “innovative, effective, and cost-saving ways to provide programs and services to their citizens.”

The County was recognized for its cross-functional climate action teams that research, design, and execute climate initiatives from clean commuting to paper reduction. By bringing together employees from many divisions to work toward the common goal of climate action in a thoughtfully facilitated process, the quality of solutions have increased. This approach is unique because it uses both top-down and bottom-up strategies to give ownership to both executive leadership and employees.

The County also received the top honor in the Challenge Awards Program, the Innovation Award, for Dig Deep Farms & Produce, a community-driven venture launched by the Alameda County Deputy Sheriffs’ Activities League. Dig Deep Farms employs local residents, including individuals transitioning from the criminal justice system, to grow, sell, and distribute organic produce. Some of the produce is grown on County-owned land. The produce is distributed in local communities and can be purchased using food assistance.

Two innovative new programs were recognized with Merit Awards: the Assessor’s Office’s “Canvassing App” and the District Attorney’s Human Exploitation & Trafficking Watch Community Initiatives. The “Canvassing App” is a mobile tool that County staff can use for their annual business property canvassing; it eliminates paper forms and improves data quality. The District Attorney’s human trafficking initiatives educate the community about human trafficking, support victims, and hold offenders accountable.