The Highland County Board of Commissioners on Wednesday finalized the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funding in a second public hearing for two projects in the county, one in Greenfield and the other in Mowrystown.
As previously reported, in the first public hearing held last month, commissioners ranked the projects with Greenfield’s Massie Street paving project first, Mowrystown’s sewer system upgrades second, and Hillsboro’s proposed sidewalk improvements.
Part of the discussion was in regard to requested funds from the municipalities and the matching funds offered. Greenfield’s total project amount is $60,600 with the village requesting half that amount through CDBG and matching the rest of the project’s funding. Hillsboro’s total project amount is $63,100 with the city requesting $55,600 through CDBG. Mowrystown’s total project amount is $62,500 and the village is looking for full project funding.
Highland County Commissioner Shane Wilkin previously said that the issue with Mowrystown’s sewer system is that the “electric and the pumps aren’t quite meshing” which causes the pumps to burn out. The village has had to have the pumps rebuilt four times since 2008. Discussion also included Mowrystown’s financial state and the importance of funding the fixes to a necessary system, fixes that are expected to alleviate the current system’s issues.
On Wednesday, commissioners decided to stick with the previous ranking and to fund the top two, with Greenfield to receive $36,700 and Mowrystown to receive $62,500, the estimated cost of the project as confirmed by mayor Frank Terwilliger who was present at the meeting.
It was previously reported that Highland County was allocated $124,000 in CDBG funds, and after administrative and fair housing fees, would have $99,200 to fund up to three projects.
The CDBG money for Hillsboro would have been for a stretch of sidewalk going south from the recently-installed pedestrian bridge on North High Street. It was considered companion funding for previously announced Capital Budget funding that the city is in line to receive in the amount of $200,000 for the construction of a pathway – essentially a sidewalk – connecting the uptown area to Southern State Community College. Hillsboro Safety and Service Director Todd Wilkin said later that if the city had been awarded the CDBG funding, it could have stretched the Capital Budget funding.
In other business, Shane Wilkin said he had communication with the Ohio Valley Regional Development Commission (OVRDC) in regard to funding a different project previously submitted.
A recent local OVRDC caucus saw the ranking and scoring of county projects, which then went on to a regional level for ranking and scoring before going to the state to determine funding.
In May, OVRDC members at the hearing ranked a Turning Point project for the addition of a manufacturing line at the facility third out of three projects, likely leaving it out of the running for funding.
But on Wednesday Wilkin said he had been informed by the OVRDC that some additional funds may be available that may help the project for Turning Point Applied Learning Center. He said he already put executive director LuAnn Winkle in touch with the commission on the matter.
He said the proposed project was for the addition of a powder coating line at Turning Point, which would be part of a partnership between the facility and Greenfield Products.
On another matter, a manufacturer’s roundtable meeting is being held at Buckeye Hills in Greenfield on Thursday, June 2 at 3 p.m. The purpose, as previously reported, is to give local manufacturers a chance to network and get to know each other.
The Highland County Board of Commissioners meets each Wednesday at 8:30 a.m. on the second floor of the county administration building, 119 Governor Foraker Pl., Hillsboro. The meetings are open to the public.
Reach Angela Shepherd at 937-393-3456, ext. 1681, or on Twitter @wordyshepherd.