LOOGOOTEE — The Loogootee City Council accepted a $150,000 grant Monday night from the Indiana Housing and Community Development Authority. This money will be used to rehabilitate up to seven homes in the city. The homeowners have to meet certain income parameters to qualify for the program.
Audrey Conlon, from Southern Indiana Development Corporation, presented the paperwork for Mayor Noel Harty and the council members to sign. She said SIDC would need to verify the seven homeowners who initially applied for the grant program still qualify.
Conlon said the rehabilitation work would be put out to bid to interested contractors. The grant program requires the work to be completed by the end of 2014.
A similar program occurred in Washington a couple years ago.
The council also agreed to pay SIDC $34,100 to administer the grant program, which includes meeting certain government regulations, such as the removal of lead-based paints.
In other business, Harty said the slide had been repaired at the city park.
A recent letter to the editor of the Loogootee Tribune had complained about some of the equipment at the park. The mayor said he had checked the equipment with the building inspector and they only found a problem with the slide. He said money for a new slide, which will cost about $4,000, has been included in the 2014 proposed budget.
Harty said Street Superintendent Don Grindstaff will officially retire in September, although his last day of work will be July 16. Between then and September, Grindstaff will use vacation days and other compensatory time he has accumulated. He will be replaced as superintendent by his assistant, Mike Taylor.
The mayor said the city¹s fund-raising efforts for a new pool now stands at $14,624, including $5,000 from the Knights of Columbus Loogootee Council No. 732. The fund-raising goal is $500,000.
In other business
*Rejected the sole asphalt bid, from Hunter Paving and Construction, Huntingburg, as being too high. The bid will be readvertised.
*Granted permission to Clerk-Treasurer Nancy Jones to advertise the proposed 2014 city budget. She said the Park and Recreation Department section of the budget was advertised extremely high, so she expects it will be cut by the state’s Department of Local Government Finance.
*Heard from Utilities Manager Bo Wilson that the city’s wastewater sludge can no longer be used on a local farmer’s fields, as it has been for years.
He said 100,000 gallons needs to be disposed of immediately. Wilson said he may have a temporary alternative solution involving another farmer¹s fields, but it would cost the city $5,000 per 100,000 gallons of sludge used.