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Category Archives: STAR Updates

STAR Objective Spotlight: HS-7: Safe Communities

Crime happens in every city and county in the United States. The recent mass shooting in Las Vegas was a tragedy, just as every crime is that takes a life, our liberty, or the pursuit of happiness. This month, STAR Communities is focusing on HS-7: Safe Communities. This objective includes outcomes for crime rates and... Read More

Q&A Series: Reflecting on the QuickSTARt Workshop in Columbia, SC

This month we hear from Mary Pat Bauldaf, Sustainability Facilitator for Columbia, SC. In May 2017, STAR Communities traveled to Columbia to conduct a QuickSTARt Workshop, a multi-day program that accelerates data collection to reach STAR certification. After four months of data collection, Columbia has submitted their application and anticipates becoming South Carolina’s first certified... Read More

Celebrating the Conclusion of Version 1.0 of the STAR Rating System

In September 2017, STAR Communities certified its 63rd community, concluding certifications under Versions 1.0, 1.1, and 1.2 of the STAR Community Rating System. Since the launch of Version 1.0 in 2012, hundreds of communities have used the rating system to set goals, measure progress, and improve their communities. Over the past 5 years, we have... Read More

STAR Objective Spotlight: CE-7: Waste Minimization

This month STAR is directing attention to objective CE-7: Waste Minimization. The goal of this objective is for communities to track how they reduce and reuse material waste produced in the community. In 2015, 258 million tons of municipal solid waste (MSW) were generated in the United States. This is equivalent to 0.8 tons per person or 4.41... Read More

Q&A Series: Universal Recycling and Composting in Burlington, VT

This month we hear from Jennifer Green, Sustainability Coordinator for the City of Burlington, Vermont. Burlington received a 4-STAR Rating in April 2015. This month we are focusing on community efforts to reduce waste. At the time of Burlington’s certification, the City was three years in to the eight year roll out of Vermont’s Act... Read More

Q&A Series: Integrating STAR into Local Plans in Lawrence, KS

This month we hear from Eileen Horn, Sustainability Director in Lawrence and Douglas County, KS. Lawrence received a 4-STAR Rating in October 2016. Since that time, the City has used STAR outcomes as the metrics for their recently adopted Strategic Plan and incorporated STAR actions into an update to their Comprehensive Plan. What was Lawrence’s... Read More

STAR Objective Spotlight: EAC-3: Educational Opportunity & Attainment

Summer vacation days are waning. Principals and teachers are dusting off cobwebs, physically and mentally, and gearing up for the next school year to begin. This month, STAR Communities is directing attention to Objective EAC-3: Educational Opportunity & Attainment. Objective EAC-3 focuses on equitable attainment of quality education for individuals from birth to adulthood. Outcomes... Read More

STAR Communities Board Approves Strategic Plan

Earlier this year, the STAR Communities Board of Directors approved a strategic plan for 2017-2020. The new strategic plan guides the organization’s activities and presents an updated mission, vision, and core values for the organization. STAR Communities became an independent 501c3 organization in 2012. The rating system was released in pilot program that same year. Five... Read More

Local Government Adaptation to a Changing Climate Using the STAR Community Rating System

This is the second blog post which provides supporting perspectives for the new STAR Climate Change Guide. Read the first blog post here. In addition, STAR hosted a webinar on  July 20th, with representatives from local governments that discussed the newly released Climate Change Guide, the current state of climate change efforts in the United States, and several local... Read More

Q&A Series: Building a Sustainability Coalition in Winston-Salem, NC

Winston-Salem, NC received their 3-STAR Rating in February 2017, as a part of the Spring 2016 Leadership STAR Community Program. Wendell Hardin, Sustainability Manger, and Helen Peplowski, Sustainability Project Coordinator, tell us how the City took a comprehensive approach during their data collection, in order to assess the whole community’s sustainability. They also share how... Read More