Greene County commissioners approved a resolution during their Nov. 18 meeting to apply for more than one million dollars from a state funding stream to be used for numerous housing improvements throughout the county.
The application is asking for a total of $1,054,199 from the Pennsylvania Housing Affordability and Rehabilitation Enhancement Fund, which was created in 2010 to assist with the creation, rehabilitation and support of affordable housing throughout Pennsylvania.
The application would include a local 10% match in the amount of $105,419.
State funding for the grants is provided by both the Marcellus Shale Impact Fee established by Act 13 of 2012 and revenues from the Realty Transfer Tax (RTT) established by Act 58 of 2015.
Commissioner Mike Belding said, the grant request would continue the work of a recently received $500,000 HOME Investment Partnership Program.
“The program will provide no interest, deferred payment loans to assist with roof issues, safety and health issues, updates to major systems such as furnaces, outdated electric or plumbing systems, and other repairs to preserve, improve and stabilize the current housing stock in Greene County,” Belding said. “Assuming compliance of the homeowner, this loan is forgivable after five years. This is for owner occupied homes only.”
Previously awarded PHARE grant funding has been used in Greene County by the Redevelopment Authority for the purchase and clearing of six blighted homes.
In other news, commissioners approve a Forgivable Advance for Small Business Assistance (FASBA) in the amount of $33,516 to the Pennsylvania Livestock Auction, pending financial analysis and committee approval.
Belding said FASBA funds can be used to pay for the following eligible expenses: Payroll, rent/mortgage, utilities, supplies (up to 90 days), PPE, insurance, accounting, legal and advertising expenses. FASBA funds can also reimburse eligible costs incurred to prevent, prepare for, and respond to the coronavirus.
Commissioners also approved the lease of a SendPro 2000 postage machine with the company Amasti of Pittsburgh for 63 months in the amount of $18,600.75.
Belding said the county had a “Supermail” contract that processed outgoing county mail, which is no longer available. The SendPro 2000 postage machine will be shared by county offices so each office can accurately apply postage to their outgoing mail and then deliver to the U.S. postal system, he said.
Commissioners also approved an allocation of $6,500 to Jefferson Volunteer Fire Company for a mechanical CPR device. The fire company requested assistance last month in purchasing a Lucas device, which allows personnel to perform other lifesaving treatment. Belding said the money is allotted through the county’s allocated American Rescue Plan funding.
Commissioners also recognized six residents, who served as longtime volunteers for the Corner Cupboard Food Pantry. Belding said the food bank’s director, Candice Webster, requested the six volunteer be recognized for their decades of volunteer work.
“They were actually delivering food during our meeting, so we are determining a time to go to the pantry and deliver a letter of appreciation to each of them,” Belding said.
The recognized volunteers are Monteen Murphy, Wallace Murphy, Shirley Burris, Harry Burris, Ellen Fern Weaver and Patty Bane.