Equity and Environmental Justice

Beginning in 2018, the Restoration Authority has worked to develop a just and equitable approach to ensure the benefits of Measure AA funding are conveyed to economically disadvantaged communities (EDCs) in the Bay Area (EDC defined as a community with a median household income less than 80% of the area median income).

In 2024, Equity Guidelines were adopted by the Governing Board in May 2024, with passage of Resolution 122.   The Guidelines identify actions to further equitable outcomes in the six areas: representation, outreach and partnerships, applications and grants, meaningful engagement, project benefits, and accountability and transparency. They also provide the basis for staff to develop five-year equity work plans, which will include desired outcomes, strategies to achieve the outcomes, interim tasks and milestones, and performance measures that can be used to evaluate progress on an annual basis.  The Equity Guidelines build upon the foundational work achieved by the Authority’s equity consultant, Advisory Committee, and Governing Board in developing and adopting Equity Recommendations in 2020.

The Authority has also developed a set of Tribal Engagement Recommendations. More information about how the Authority works with Tribes can be found on the Tribal Relations page. 


Developing Equity Recommendations

Initially, the Authority's Advisory Committee formed an ad hoc subcommittee to explore how best to engage with and provide benefits to EDCs. To support this work, the Authority hired an equity consultant in February 2019 to develop recommendations for the grant program. The consultant’s report, Establishing an Equity and Community Engagement Program that Benefits Economically Disadvantaged Communities, was based on input obtained through interviews and focus group discussions with community leaders and equity experts. Based upon this report, the subcommittee developed a set of short-term recommendations to the Governing Board on next steps to advance Measure AA Projects in benefit of EDCs (December 2019).  Through discussion with the Governing Board, the subcommittee augmented this to include near and long term recommendations.  The full set of recommendations were formally adopted by the Governing Board in July 2020, with the passage of Resolution 70. 


Resolution 70 and the Advisory Committee Recommendations

Resolution 70 (July 2021) commits the Governing Board of the San Francisco Bay Restoration Authority to integrating equity into its work by continuing to listen, welcome new voices and partnerships, and work with community leaders to develop projects that empower and benefit communities that historically have been excluded from habitat restoration and the design of parks and trails.

The full text of the Resolution and the set of recommendations for achieving the aim of integrating equity into the Authority's work can be found here.


Equity Guidelines

Following the Equity Recommendations that were focused on the short-term, with the Equity Guidelines, the Authority established guidance that extends the full length of the Measure AA timeframe, until 2036. The Guidelines were developed by staff in partnership with the Authority Advisory Committee's Ad Hoc Subcommittee on Equity and informed by feedback from representatives from local community-based organizations, which can be found in the Summary of Feedback from 2023 Community Outreach and Listening Sessions document. The Equity Guidelines were adopted by the Governing Board in May 2024, with passage of Resolution 122. The Equity Guidelines are accompanied by the Equity Guidelines in Action document, which identifies completed and ongoing Authority actions consistent with the Equity Guidelines.


Progress Reports

In accordance with Resolution 70, staff report annually on the progress made towards implementing the recommendations. 


Community Grants Program

In response to recommendations from equity and environmental justice representatives, the Advisory Committee, and Governing Board Members to improve the equity of our grant program, the Authority developed a Community Grants Program. The Community Grants Program provides an alternative application pathway for projects led by community-based organizations in economically disadvantaged communities.  

More information on the Community Grants Program can be found here.



Restoration Authority Equity Resources, by date