Okmulgee (October 18, 2016) – The City of Okmulgee on Tuesday was honored by representatives from the Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust (TSET) who recognized city officials and local partners for their commitment to improving health and quality of life in their community.
The City of Okmulgee was awarded its second Healthy Communities Incentive grant of $37,000 for achieving the Gold level which includes adopting policies and strategies that promote health and quality of life.
The city has utilized the $37,000 in funding for architectural services for design, drawings and construction observation. Other funding for the complete project of a trail systems amounts to $243,500 of which is a grant of $160,000 through the federal Recreational Trails Program administered by the OK Tourism and Recreation Department.
The first Healthy Communities Incentive grant for Okmulgee was $13,000 awarded in 2012 and that funding was used for the community garden and the Recreational Trail project.
TSET’s incentive grant funding for communities is based on population size and the types of strategies implemented. Cities that have met TSET’s criteria and been awarded a grant are able to determine how the incentive funding will be used to promote health in their communities. Grant funds are frequently used to leverage other funds for community projects that advance health.
As part of the criteria for the grant, the City of Okmulgee City Council voted to make all city property tobacco-free and vapor-free, adopted street and zoning policies that improve the walkability and biking in their community. All of these efforts help encourage residents to live healthy, active, tobacco-free lifestyles.
TSET offers incentive grants to eligible communities that have met criteria established for the program such as tobacco-free policies, availability of fresh fruits and vegetables, and increasing opportunities for residents to become more physically active.
To be eligible to apply communities must first have been recognized through the Certified Healthy Oklahoma program, a partnership between the Oklahoma Academy for State Goals, the Oklahoma Turning Point Council, the State Chamber and the Oklahoma State Department of Health.
Since the Healthy Communities Incentive Grant program began five years ago, $2.1 million in grant funds have been awarded to 56 communities.
“We are thrilled to offer incentives to cities and towns that have taken action to improve health in their communities,” said Tracey Strader, TSET executive director. “Working together we can make the healthy choice, the easy choice, where Oklahomans live, work, learn and play.”
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Julie Bisbee, firstname.lastname@example.org
The Oklahoma Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust (TSET) serves as a partner and bridge builder for organizations working towards shaping a healthier future for all Oklahomans. TSET provides leadership at the intersections of health by working with local coalitions and initiatives across the state, by cultivating innovative and life-changing research, and by working across public and private sectors to develop, support, implement and evaluate creative strategies to take advantage of emerging opportunities to improve the public's health. TSET. Better Lives Through Better Health.