Technical Assistance Grants (TAGs)

PSC has developed and implemented US DOT PHMSA Technical Assistance Grant (TAG) proposals since 2009. If you are interested in working with us to develop and complete a TAG for your community, please contact us.

US DOT PHMSA’s TAG program awards enable communities and groups of individuals to obtain funding for technical assistance in the form of engineering or other scientific analysis of pipeline safety issues and help promote public participation in official proceedings. For purposes of grants eligibility, communities are defined as cities, towns, villages, counties, parishes, townships, and similar governmental subdivisions, or consortiums of such subdivisions. A nongovernmental group of individuals is eligible for a grant under the TAG program if its members are affected or potentially affected individuals who are incorporated as a non-profit organization in the state where they are located.  PHMSA first awarded technical assistance grants in 2009. The following is a list of TAG grants awarded to Pipeline Safety Coalition, the final reports, and collaborating organizations and individuals:

Grant Title - click the link to view details and/or final report

Main ObjectiveGrant RecipientFiscal Start Fiscal EndStatus
Education and outreach regarding existing and proposed pipelines

S.A.V.E., Inc. conducted education and outreach on pipeline safety involving the existing Columbia and proposed co-linear AES Mid-Atlantic Express LNG Project pipelines in Pennsylvania. Blue Heron Consulting/Pipeline Safety Coalition developed proposal.Safety, Agriculture, Villages, & Environment (S.A.V.E.) Inc.9/28/200912/30/2010Complete
Analysis of Dominion Keystone project for northern Chester County, Pennsylvania

West Vincent Township analyzed pipeline safety issues affecting the local community with regard to a Dominion Keystone project.  Blue Heron Consulting/Pipeline Safety Coalition developed proposal.West Vincent Township, PA9/28/20099/27/2010Complete
Evaluate and assess safety of co-locating proposed AES pipeline adjacent to Columbia pipeline in a High Consequence Area

The Bradford Glen Homeowners Association evaluated and assessed the safety of co-locating the proposed Mid-Atlantic Express, LLC pipeline adjacent to an existing Columbia pipeline in the vicinity of a High Consequence Area.  Blue Heron Consulting/Pipeline Safety Coalition developed proposal. Bradford Glen Homeowners Association9/28/20093/27/2011Complete
Development & Implementation of Chester County Coalition for Safety and Reliability of Pipeline Operations

S.A.V.E., Inc. created a Chester County coalition for pipeline safety.  Blue Heron Consulting/Pipeline Safety Coalition developed proposal.Safety, Agriculture, Villages, & Environment (S.A.V.E.) Inc., PA9/30/20109/30/2011Complete
Forest Vegetation as a Bioindicator to Detect Leaking Natural Gas Pipelines

Pennsylvania State University and Pipeline Safety Coalition developed educational and outreach efforts to educate the public and inform citizens, municipalities, and pipeline operators on how to detect leaks in natural gas pipelines using forest vegetation as a bioindicator.
Pennsylvania State University9/30/20109/29/2012Complete
Promoting Pipelines and Informed Planning Alliance (PIPA) recommended practices and model ordinances in multiple localities across Pennsylvania

S.A.V.E., Inc. promoted Pipeline and Informed Planning Alliance (PIPA) recommended practices and model ordinances in multiple localities across Pennsylvania. Pipeline Safety Coalition developed proposal. 

Safety, Agriculture, Villages, & Environment (S.A.V.E.) Inc.9/29/20119/28/2012Complete
Pipeline Procedure and Safety Education Program(PPSEP)

Pipeline Safety Coalition researched, defined, created, and delivered a curriculum for training community members to be pipeline safety educators. The curriculum targeted suburban and urban communities, Marcellus Shale communities, and farming communities. It addressed pipeline safety and current issues associated with Pennsylvania's rapidly developing energy infrastructure. The curriculum was designed to be transferable to other states.

Pipeline Safety Coalition9/29/20119/29/2012Complete
An overview of the state of pipelines in prototypical Lycoming, Pennsylvania


The League of Women Voters of PA Citizen Education Fund and Pipeline Safety Coalition worked together with other organizations and individuals to conduct an overview of the state of pipelines in a Pennsylvania community and county 

that included: expert, objective information about the safety of the growing number of natural gas pipelines in an area of prototypical region, Lycoming County; review of regulations and status of the existing and evolving gas transmission system; recommendations to serve as a basis for educating the public to prompt participation and an objective knowledge base for informed decision-making by elected officials; promotion of a safer, more efficient, environmentally sensitive natural gas transmission system for Pennsylvania.

League Of Women Voters of PA Citizen Education Fund9/29/20119/28/2012Complete
Creating a National Mayors’ Council on Pipeline Safety

The City of Allentown and Pipeline Safety Coalition worked on a project that consists of a two tier approach to be performed supportively and concurrently: Tier 1: Purchase four (4) multi gas surveyors GVS 500's to provide first responders the ability to detect leaks during emergency response to natural gas, pipeline and other emergency incidents. Tier II: Research and develop a national Mayor's Council on Pipeline Safety (MCPS), initiated by Allentown Mayor Pawlowski to initiate outreach to San Bruno Mayor Ruane to collaborate on efforts in defining and disseminating pipeline safety initiatives specific to American urban cities.

City of Allentown, PA9/28/20129/27/2013Complete
Chester County Commissioner created Pipeline Notification Protocol (PNP)

Pipeline Safety Coalition worked with East Brandywine Township to research and develop a standardized notification protocol for informing Chester County officials of projected pipeline projects in order to enhance engineering and scientific analysis of pipeline projects that is initiated by and includes full stakeholder participation in the planning stage.

East Brandywine Township, PA9/28/20129/27/2013Complete

Chester County-based First Responder Case Study

Pipeline Safety Coalition conducted a case study of Chester County, PA with first responders to identify first responder education and training needs specific to gas pipelines. Following the case study, recommendations were provided to develop a core curriculum using model firefighters. The final report was developed to share with other first responders and communities. 

Pipeline Safety Coalition9/28/20129/27/2013Complete
Tier I: Promote PNP in Pennsylvania; Tier II: Produce and Educate the Educator (PPSEP) Portal


Pipeline Safety Coalition leveraged work from two previous TAG projects (PNP in 2013 and PPSEP in 2012) to support Pipelines Informed Planning Alliance (PIPA) recommendations. Tier I advanced the work product of the Pipeline Notification Protocol (PNP) throughout the remaining 66 counties of Pennsylvania by creating a standardized notification protocol for pipeline operators to use in proposed pipeline projects prior to the permitting processes. Tier II advanced the work product of educating the Educators: Pipeline Procedure and Safety Education Program (PPSEP) by producing, activating, and employing the online program.

Pipeline Safety Coalition9/30/20139/24/2014Complete 
Develop the Mayors’ Council on Pipeline Safety

The City of Allentown and Pipeline Safety Coalition worked together to develop a National Mayors’ Coalition for Pipeline Safety and outreached to mayors by educating and promoting participation at local levels of League of Cities and Business Councils. The project scope included organizing and conducting the first National Meeting of Mayors on Pipeline Safety to promote participation, recommendations, and the growth of the National Mayors Coalition, in conjunction with Winter/Spring U.S. Conference of Mayors, in Washington, DC. 

City of Allentown, PA9/30/20139/24/2015Complete
Pipeline Safety Coalition Feasibility Study

Pipeline Safety Coalition conducted a feasibility study of the expansion of pipeline safety education in the Northeast United States in order to enhance the number of informed communities who play a vital role in safety and reliability of pipeline operations within the region. 

Pipeline Safety Coalition9/25/20149/24/2015Complete
City of San Bruno

The City of San Bruno worked with Pipeline Safety Coalition to conduct research for development of a model Urban Pipeline Initiative utilities and cities share pipeline mapping information; research, gather and analyze existing best practices for gas leak/explosion response and produce MCPS recommendations for prescriptive response best practices specific to urban communities; review current automatic shut off valve studies and/or initiatives to produce MCPS recommendations for prescriptive use of automatic shut off valves; solidify MCPS website host location. design and webmaster in order to accommodate growth of MCPS and facilitate dissemination of information; leverage the resources and relationships developed with partners such PHMSA, NTSB, the United Association of Journeymen and Apprentices of the Plumbing and Pipe Fitting Industry of the United States, Canada and Australia (UA), American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL/CIO), BlueGreenAlliance (BGA) and others, to facilitate the success of project research and produced work product.

City of San Bruno, CA9/25/20149/24/2015Complete
City of Allentown


The City of Allentown worked with Pipeline Safety Coalition to research and define specific Mayors' Council on Pipeline Safety (MCPS) recommendations for clear definitions and minimum leak detection regulations such as what qualifies as a leak, how leaks are classified, and what is done about discovered leaks, conduct a needs assessment for a MCPS national campaign for more consistent and prescriptive distribution line safety regulations; create a series of educational video bites for a Mayors National Campaign on Pipeline Safety similar to Marathon Pipe Line, LLC, "Safe Digging with John Ratzenberger" to be posted to the MCPS website and accessible to partner organization websites; and, leverage relationships developed with labor and other partners to produce a more robust national conference.

City of Allentown, PA9/25/20149/24/2015Complete
East Brandywine Township

Final Report

East Brandywine Township worked with Pipeline Safety Coalition to hire a hydrologist/hydrogeologist for the purpose of research, assessment, and analysis of the Sunoco Logistics LP Mariner East pipeline and pumping station proposals in Chester County with regard to community and environmental safety. As part of this TAG, East Brandywine Township conducted a series of public forums in Chester County for communities to: I) learn about the pipeline siting process for hazardous liquids vs. natural gas pipelines, and 2) to promote a proactive collective community approach to pipeline siting and safety through education.


East Brandywine Township, PA9/25/20149/24/2015Complete
Real Estate Best Practices for Pipeline Safety Education and Awareness


Pipeline Safety Coalition conducted a study of the practice of real estate in conjunction with gas, liquids, and hazardous liquids pipeline safety in order to develop informational resources for real estate professionals on pipeline safety and awareness in the US Atlantic Coastal States.

Pipeline Safety Coalition9/28/20159/27/2016Complete
Need, Scope, and Development of National Pipeline Survivor Support System


The City of San Bruno and Pipeline Safety Coalition leveraged investments, work products, and partnerships begun by the City of San Bruno and the City of Allentown in the bi coastal formation of the Mayors' Council on Pipeline Safety in order to convert disenfranchised cultures created through pipeline failure tragedy into a resilience based safety culture through the idea of a pipeline survivor network. 

City of San Bruno, CA9/28/20159/27/2016Complete
Safer Cities

The City of Allentown and Pipeline Safety Coalition worked together to define and develop grassroots generated pipeline safety protocols for American cities that could influence the advancement of safety recommendations into active and required best practices and achieve safer American communities through collaborative efforts. 

City of Allentown, PA9/22/20159/21/2016Complete
Strengthening Pipeline Safety Through Community Pipeline Safety and Awareness Networks

To establish and develop a grassroots-based Community Pipeline Safety and Awareness Network (CAN) across 21 municipalities in Chester County, PA.Pipeline Safety Coalition9/28/2018  Active