Fulton County Board of Supervisors authorizes submittal of block grant

JOHNSTOWN — The Fulton County Board of Supervisors on Monday authorized submittal of a $200,000 2018 Community Development Block Grant application to the state Office of Community Renewal to again operate a Fulton County Microenterprise Grant Program.

The grant program has assisted several very small area businesses in the past.

“That’s an item the Fulton County Center for Regional Growth would like us to work with them on and sponsor a third Microenterprise Program,” said county Administrative Officer Jon Stead.

Monday’s resolution not only authorized an application, but set a public hearing on the application. The hearing will be conducted at 1:45 p.m. July 9 in the Supervisor’s Chambers at the County Office Building.

Stead said the CDBG application is due in late July so it had to go immediately on Monday’s agenda. Supervisors also had to set a public hearing under U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development rules.

The CRG notified Fulton County that CDBG funding was available from the state. The CRG is proposing to apply for and administer the Microenterprise Grant Program on behalf of the county in the grant amount of $200,000. The Microenterprise Grant Program is intended to provide grants up to $35,000 to small businesses with five or less full-time employees to assist with startup or expansion costs.

Eligible activities include providing assistance to businesses that are involved in manufacturing, warehousing and distribution, agriculture, high technology, research and development and traditional and innovative small business endeavors, according to the CRG. Retail projects will be considered if the business is located in a town, village or city’s main street.

“This has been a very successful program the last three or four years,” said CRG board member and Perth Supervisor Greg Fagan.

Fagan said several small businesses have been helped.

Stead said the county’s last Microenterprise Grant application was rejected.

“A lot of handholding and a lot of paperwork goes through these grants,” Stead said.

Michael Anich covers Johnstown and Fulton County news. He can be reached at manich@leaderherald.com.

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