County finance says OK to HCI
by JOYANNA WEBER, Banner Staff Writer
Dec 06, 2012 | 638 views | 0 0 comments | 6 6 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Funds for the Healthy Community Initiative grants have been approved by the Bradley County Finance Committee.

After a lengthy discussion about how much funding could be made available, the committee approved $104,730 with a 3-2 vote.

Committee Chairman Ed Elkins and member Mel Griffith voted against the amount because they had concerns about removing funding from the clean water fund.

Elkins suggested instead of moving $35,000 left over from funding the grant in 2010, the committee only move $15,000, leaving an additional $20,000 for clean water grants.

Even moving the entire $35,000, there is still $20,000 available for clean water projects.

“Typically they haven’t been major projects,” said Amy Moore, legislative assistant to the Bradley County Commission.

Committee member J. Adam Lowe said the money should be moved to make it available for the grant to be awarded because it would be funding a project rather than being held for potential projects for which a current utility has not expressed a need. In order for the HCI committee to approve a clean water grant, the local utility involved must pay 50 percent of the cost of installing the new pipes.

“I just don’t see there is any indication $20,000 is not going to be enough for projects that may come up,” Lowe said.

Moore and Elkins cited residents who are still on well water as the reason for wanting to keep more money for the clean water grants.

Because of the switch from awarding on a calendar year to awarding on a physical year, Elkins said he had been worried interest for the six-month overlap may have been counted twice.

Moore explained since the committee was waiting to apply the grants until December, no interest was lost, and the six-month overlap had not been included in budgeting numbers.

The deadline for applying for an HCI grant is Dec. 14. Additional information can be found on the Bradley County Commission page of the county website at www.bradleyco.net.

Also during the meeting, the finance committee approved moving donations accepted into the Bradley County Fire-Rescue reserve budget to be used for the volunteer Christmas party. The amendment had been delayed from the last meeting because it had said it was originally an insurance payment. County finance director Lynn Burns said the original explanation of the reserve fund had been incorrect because it had been left on the form from a previous budget amendment.

- Grants and donations totaling $3,231,526 were accepted by the finance committee for Bradley County Schools. Grants included a state preschool grant, a federal 21st Century Community Learning Centers grant, a physical education program grant and the hazard mitigation grant for the addition to Walker Valley High School, and a donation from the Salvation Army for students at Michigan Avenue, Waterville Community and Black Fox elementary schools.

- Payments to the Bradley County Sheriff’s Office, an insurance payment and funding for engineering fees were also approved.