Restoration Advisory Boards (RABs) and Technical Assistance for Public Participation (TAPP)


DoD encourages community involvement in the environmental restoration process through RABs.  RABs provide a forum for stakeholder input on and discussion about cleanup activities on active installations, Base Realignment and Closure locations, and Formerly Used Defense Sites properties.  For example, RAB participants review environmental cleanup progress and provide input to installation decision makers.  RAB participants may include representatives from installations and local communities; state, local, and tribal governments; Federal, state, and local regulatory agencies; and other stakeholders (e.g., parties that may be affected by environmental restoration activities at the installation).  DoD provides funding to establish, operate, and support RABs.  This support ensures that local citizens have a forum to provide meaningful input regarding cleanup activities in their communities.  In FY 2015, DoD spent $2.8 million to support 229 RABs on 250 installations and properties. 

The TAPP program provides communities with independent technical assistance that contributes to the public’s ability to provide advice to decision makers by improving the public’s understanding of the conditions and related cleanup activities at a site.  Specifically, the TAPP program helps RAB members better understand the scientific and engineering issues underlying environmental cleanup activities.  The RAB must agree and certify by majority to apply for TAPP.  Once the RAB members formally submit an application, DoD reviews the TAPP project to ensure it meets eligibility requirements.  RAB members can use TAPP funding for support with activities such as reviewing human health risks, assessing technology, interpreting technical documents, and participating in relative risk evaluations. 

For more information about RABs and the TAPP please see the following:

Final Rule for Restoration Advisory Boards, Part 202 of Title 32, CFR

May 30 2006 Vol 71, No 103

Final Rule for Technical Assistance for Public Participation, Part 203 of Title 32, CFR

TAPP Handbook