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McLouth will hold public hearing concerning community center

by Dennis Sharkey

Advocates for a new community center building in McLouth seemingly have all of their ducks in a row. Now it’s time for the community to speak.

Before the city council’s next meeting Oct. 5, the city’s Recreation Commission along with city leaders will hold a public hearing at 6 p.m. about the center.

In preparation, city leaders and Recreation Commission members met with Garrett Nordstrom who along with Donna Crawford will serve as the initial grant writer that will primarily pay for the biggest chunk of the project. Crawford was not present for the meeting.

Project organizers are seeking a $400,000 federal grant to build the community center in Rose Park overlooking the Stan Braksick Sports Complex. To enhance the chances of the grant the recreation commission is putting forth $200,000 of their own as matching funds.

USD 342 will contribute to the project by donating the land in the park to the project. However, the project is mediated through the city so the school district will have to transfer the land to the city once the grant is approved.

The city will contribute to the project by being the governmental mediator because state statute does not allow a recreation commission to own property. The city will also donate labor and equipment for installing water and gas lines to the building. Supply funds will come from the project’s fund.

City Administrator Carl Chalfant was tasked with providing stiff estimates for what the value for the donation would be. Nordstrom said in-kind work on the project and the donation of the land can be used as points and better the chances of the city being awarded a grant.

The land being donated for the project also needs to be appraised. Nordstrom said the project would then need a second appraisal.

Although the city would own the building and lease it to the recreation commission, the city would not be able to use the building for any civic functions such as council meetings, court or voting.

“The city government wise is not going to see a lot of benefit from it,” Chalfant said to council members last week. “But our community would.”

In other city business:

  • City Clerk Kim Perry was not present last week but left a report indicating that she had changed the city’s filing status for unemployment insurance from a governmental agency to an employer contributor. The city’s fee will increase this year to 4 percent from 0.1 percent because a claim was filed against the city last year. If the move had not been made the city’s fee would have increased to 7.4 percent.
  • Perry’s report also said that the city will not be responsible for any liquor license fees to the state.

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Posted by on Oct 2 2010. Filed under McLouth, Municipalities, The Independent. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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