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Local News

August 27, 2013

Local projects awarded $3M in grants

Nine projects in Otsego County, mostly in the town and city of Oneonta, have won state funding totaling almost $2 million, officials announced Monday. And in Schoharie County, five projects netted almost $1.2 million.

The grants in Otsego County are from the state Office of Homes and Community Renewal division are for housing, businesses and municipal infrastructure projects, a media release said, and they are the result of joint efforts by the county and city.

“I’m optimistic that these awards are harbingers of good things to come,” Mayor Dick Miller said.

All the project applications from the city were funded, Miller said, and the result was a welcomed success after the disappointments of rejected proposals in 2011 and 2012 in the state’s Consolidated Fund Application process.

The Mohawk Valley Regional Economic Development Council, which includes Otsego and Schoharie counties and is among councils established by the governor, recently announced $8 million in awards. The area projects funded are:

• Wilber Park bathhouse restoration, $241,000;

• Catella Well No. 1 Pump House reconstruction and well expansion, $242,000;

• Latte Lounge expansion, $41,000;

• City housing acquisition and rehabilitation project, working with Housing Visions, $400,000;             

• Otsego County Micro-Enterprise Grants, including three downtown Oneonta projects, $200,000;

• Brooks’ House of Bar-B-Q bottling plant assistance, $100,000;

• Ioxus, manufacturer of ultracapacitors, assistance, $206,000.

• Custom Electronics assistance, $105,000; and

• Mobile homes rehabilitation project in Otsego County, $360,000.

In Schoharie County, projects and funding levels are:

• Town of Cobleskill, Three Johns/The Bulls Head Inn assistance, $100,000.

• Town of Cobleskill, Route 7 water and waste-water project, $500,000.

• Schoharie County housing rehabilitation program, $525,000.

• MyMobie assistance, $25,000.

• New England Calendar Inc. assistance, $25,000.

Miller said the city’s awards represent the most-successful effort in recent years. The Latte Lounge, Brooks, Ioxus, Custom Electronics and the Micro-Enterprise grants have “tremendous positive impact” on the Oneonta community’s economy, he said.

Oneonta City Manager Michael Long said the $400,000 award for the city’s housing acquisition and rehabilitation project, working with Housing Visions, will leverage $10 million in private investment targeted at improving Center City conditions. The project is among several initiatives resulting from the city’s Housing Summit and Task Force work, he said in the release.

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