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Mantua gets funds worth 200K for township projects

Money is from state’s Community Development Block Grant

Courtesy of Mantua Township. Grant money is currently being used to fund two projects in the township: Improvement of the community center’s roof and upgrades for the bathrooms of Chestnut Branch Park.

As a way to help improve certain parts of the community for everyone, Mantua Township has been awarded a Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) of $50,000 for 2023, for a total of $200,000 in such funding.

“It can be applied annually for the refurbishment of buildings for structures that fall into a certain category,” said Mayor Robert Zimmerman. “Our township administrator (Jennica Bileci) will analyze these grants and determine whether or not to apply based on if we need to improve anything.

“There’s times we may not apply if we don’t fit a certain criteria,” he added. “From 2015 to ‘17 for instance, we did not apply for the grant, because we didn’t have anything that needed fixing.”

One reason for making grant applications, according to Zimmerman, is to help ease the burden of Mantua’s taxpayers.

“It’s important, since it helps taxpayers save money,” he noted. “I’m trying to be more proactive in getting information out there (about the grant).”

The grant money is currently being used to fund two projects in the township. First is the improvement of the community center’s roof, at a cost of $100,000. The center serves as a venue for senior events, though it has been closed during renovations.

“We first received $50,000 for 2018-’19 (application),” said Zimmerman. “But there was a lapse in getting work done because of COVID and due to addressing structural issues that were found. We received $50,000 this year to continue improvement, and we should hopefully have it done in early spring of this year.”

The second township project is an upgrade for the bathrooms of Chestnut Branch Park that will cost $100,000 in grant money. The park serves as a major hub for public events, and it is unknown when the work will be complete. 

The projects are not the first time Mantua has used money from the CDBG: In 2014, it paid for the repaving of Boodys Mill Road. The township was recently approved for a $3,000 Sustainable Communities Environmental Stewardship Grant to add new state-of-the-art trash bins to Chestnut Branch Park.

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