During the Wednesday, December 7, Sunbury Village Council meeting, the village’s 2017 paving list took a serious hit. The village had applied for an Ohio Public Works Commission Grant to pave North Miller Dive and side streets in the surrounding development.
The estimated $618,000 project, if approved, would have included $331,000 in OPWC grant money, a $170,000 village share, and a $116,000 interest-free OPWC loan.
Late in the afternoon before the meeting the village received a phone call informing the village that the $331,000 in the grant request was not available; the village was asked if it would accept a $102,000 grant.
Between the earlier Services Committee meeting and the regular council meeting, Village Administrator Alan Rothermel, Sunbury Mayor Tommy Hatfield, Village Solicitor David Brehm, and council members sought a solution – streets in the subdivision surrounding North Miller Drive were in need of paving, but the village was hesitant to invest a $170,000 match for a $102,000 grant.
“During 2017 we have several projects we’re working on, including sidewalks on the State Route 37 East hill,” Hatfield said. “Knowing what we have in the works, having us come up with another $200,000 is not realistic. If we would reduce our share to the same percentage that OPWC does and just do North Miller Drive, or the side streets and not North Miller – if that’s workable we could do that, because this is a big part of how we pay for our roads.”
There was some discussion about if the village reduced its match and loan amount by the same percentage as the reduction in the OPWC Grant, would the village lose points that are an important component of grant approval.
Brehm said points should not suffer if the village match reduction equaled the percentage of the OPWC Grant reduction.
“If approved by the Ohio Public Works Commission, that allows you the most flex in your budget,” Brehm said. “Based on what you know you’re not losing any points.”
During the regular council meeting, council members approved a motion to reduce the village match and interest-free loan amount to 30.7 percent of the initial application.
If OPWC approves the adjustment the village’s 2017 paving in the North Miller Drive area would be a $184,712 project composed of a $102,000 OPWC Grant, a village match of $52,190, and a $30,612 interest-free OPWC Loan.
The village will also spend $136,670 for paving and sidewalks in 2017 when the Ohio Department of Transportation repaves State Route 37 through the village.
Reporter Lenny C. Lepola can be reached at 614-266-6093.