Belfast seeking $250,000 grant for Passy Rail Trail construction

By Ben Holbrook | May 21, 2014
Photo by: Ben Holbrook The city of Belfast is seeking a $250,000 grant to cover some of the costs associated with creating a recreational trail.

Belfast — Belfast is hoping to secure a $250,000 grant to fund a portion of the construction costs for its proposed Passy Rail Trail.

The grant is funded by the Northern Border Regional Commission, which was created in 2009. The NBRC plans to award $4.5 million in grants this year with an individual grant capped at a maximum of $250,000.

In order to secure the grant, the city must provide matching funds of 20 percent, or $62,500. City Manager Joseph Slocum indicated in his manager's report that a private fundraising effort led by Coastal Mountains Land Trust has raised enough money to provide the match.

Kittredge noted to councilors Tuesday, May 20 that providing any funding beyond the minimum required match does not impact how the NBRC will score the city's application.

Councilor Mike Hurley asked if Kittredge knew if there were any strings attached to the grant the city should be aware of if it is awarded the grant. Kittredge said he could not speak to that issue specifically, but would have a better idea of whether there is anything the city should be aware of closer to the June deadline for filing the application.

Councilor Roger Lee noted the city should also be aware of any requirements the NCRB, as a federal entity, would stipulate in regards to safety and fencing along the trail.

Kittredge received unanimous support from the council to apply for the $250,000 grant.

Applications for the grant funding are due by June 16 and the city will be notified if it is selected by September 2014.

After voting, Slocum said he anticipates bids will go out to remove a portion of the tracks and ties along the rail corridor in the coming weeks.

In other business:

Councilors appointed Gregory Jones and Lewis Dyer III as part time patrol officers.

Russell Barber was appointed a full member of the Planning Board and Steve Ryan was appointed as an alternate member on the Planning Board.

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Ben Holbrook
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Ben Holbrook is a reporter for The Republican Journal covering general news.

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