ADAMS, Mass.— Elected officials had a broad conversation at their recent workshop meeting about the $ 2.3 million the city is expected to receive as part of the US stimulus package.
“This program… is definitely a complicated program,” city administrator Jay Green told the selectmen on Wednesday.
Accountant Crystal Wojcik detailed the restrictions on the use of funds, and there are five main areas where the city can use the money: to support public health spending; to alleviate the economic suffering caused by COVID-19; replace lost public sector revenue; provide a bonus to essential workers; and investing in water, sewers and broadband infrastructure.
Green said Adams was receiving less than other surrounding communities. For example, Pittsfield is approaching $ 30 million.
Selectman Joseph Nowak asked Wojcik if the cast had anything to do with political patronage, but both Green and Wojcik said they were certain the funds were allocated based on an algorithm used by the treasure. The algorithm, they said, is likely population based, among other things.
No votes were taken during this meeting as it was a workshop meeting, but the topic will surely come back for further discussion.
In other cases, the selection committee considered possible projects for the next community development block grant application.
Eammon Coughlin, of the Department of Community Development, briefed the board on Wednesday about potential projects the department plans to apply for in the next round of the Community Development Grant (CDBG) grant.
“The city has a long history of successful CDBG applications,” Coughlin said.
As the city goes through each round of grants, it will apply for housing rehabilitation funds that will allow residents to make improvements to their homes.
This year, the grant application will include funds to rehabilitate 10 to 15 housing units, an increase from six to eight in a typical year.
The units themselves can be single-family homes or apartment buildings, with each unit counting for the 10 to 15 they plan to renovate. The plan is to ask for $ 30,000 per unit, totaling nearly half a million dollars in federal grants from the Department of Housing and Urban Development.
Most of the development will be used to modernize some of the over 80-year-old buildings along Route 8. which
“We just want to do [the buildings] code compliant and bring them to contemporary use, ”said Director of Special Projects Donna Cesan.
She said this will also help ” [seniors] aging in place. “
The maximum amount the city can claim is $ 1.35 million. The total amount available statewide is $ 25 million. The ministry has yet to finalize its total request, but it plans to ask for more than half a million for housing.
As discussed in January, the city still plans to apply for funds to develop the Hoosac Valley Coal and Grain Park on Cook Street.
The park will preserve the historic grain elevator and feature a central walkway, dog park, play area / lounge, and direct connection to the Ashuwilticook rail trail. The city can also add railroad images or artwork to tie the park to its surroundings.
The project is estimated at $ 560,000.
Keywords: CDBG, COVID-19,
More updates on the coronavirus