Published in the Center for Watershed Protection's May 2015 Watershed Science Bulletin.
As the green infrastructure (GI) approach to water management gains momentum, the local government budget process needs to adapt to some of the characteristics that make GI distinct from the more traditional gray infrastructure approach. As communities launch GI projects, shortcomings in the budgeting process can falsely create a bad first impression. When an inaugural GI project is grossly over-budget for installation or needs more frequent maintenance than planned, future GI projects may be blocked before the current project's vegetation can become established enough to produce the significant benefits for which it was designed.
At the same time, the local government budget officer has not been the target audience for the tools and resources being developed in the GI field. This publication aims to provide a budget officer, or watershed proponent who seeks to influence a budget officer, some considerations in planning for certain key attributes of GI in the budget process.