County Approves Agreements For Two Block Grant Programs
Moore County will pay $120,000 to draw down a $590,000 Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) from the state to extend water and sewer lines in the Addor community.
It is one of two block grant programs approved for Moore County this year. The other program, which does not require a local funding commitment, is $400,000 to continue scattered site housing improvements throughout the county.
At the Oct. 2 meeting, the Moore County Board of Commissioners voted to authorize Chairman David Cummings to execute both grant agreements.
The vote was not unanimous after two board members proposed delaying action on the two grant projects until the next meeting.
However, the substitute motion by Commissioner Tim Lea failed 3-2. Lea and Commissioner Colin McKenzie voted against the original motion to proceed with the projects.
Lea said that the board needs to study the issue in more detail and mentioned the prospect of a $7 million budget deficit in the next fiscal year. McKenzie wanted to know if the $120,000 commitment would come from the General Fund or the county utilities' fund.
Community Development Director Tony Patnode reminded the board that the application for the Addor project was first submitted in late 2004 but did not make it through the initial round of grants in 2005. Approval did come through this summer.
He said that completion of the project is expected to take 30 months, which means that payments may be spread over two or three fiscal years, probably up to 2008-2009.
This is the second block grant project for Addor, an unincorporated community located near the county's wastewater treatment plant.
The plant was built to accommodate the needs of Southern Pines, Pinehurst and Aberdeen, which shared the cost of the loans. Sewer services have since been extended to other areas, but Addor does not fall into any of those categories.
Because Addor is largely a community of low-income families, the county applied for the CDBG to cover the cost of extending water and sewer lines. The first such grant was awarded in 1995.
The new grant will extend water and sewer lines to about 16 households on Ironwood, Oak and Currant streets.
The scattered site grant will be used to replace or rehabilitate about five households at various points across the county.
Patnode already has a waiting list of houses that qualify for this program and is working his way through the list as the county secures the federal funds.
The two programs are funded as different categories. The Addor grant to meet concentrated needs is funded on a competitive basis, and applicants must compete with other communities for grant approval. Financial commitments are part of that aspect of the applications. The scattered site applications are handled in a different manner.
Florence Gilkeson can be reached at 947-4962 or by e-mail at email@example.com.
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