NW Ohio communities apply for innovation fund moneyWritten by Duane Ramsey | | firstname.lastname@example.org
Several Northwest Ohio communities are among those that submitted applications for the new Local Government Innovation Fund through the Ohio Department of Development.
The ODOD announced March 7 that it had received 115 applications for the LGIF program, which was designed to provide financial assistance to local governments for planning and implementing projects that would improve the efficiency of delivering community services.
The 115 applications involved nearly 80 communities and 50 counties interested in taking advantage of the cost-saving program. More than 400 potential collaborative partners were listed by the applicants.
The LGIF encouraged collaboration at the local level to reduce the cost of focused community planning at several regional information sessions held in January, including one at Owens Community College Jan. 18.
The Office of Redevelopment received 103 grant requests totaling $8.5 million for feasibility, planning or managing studies and 12 loan requests totaling $3.5 million for implementation projects.
The ODOD received applications from the City of Toledo, Lucas County, Lucas County Clerk of Courts, Lucas County Juvenile Courts, Toledo Metropolitan Area Council of Governments, City of Defiance, City of Fremont, Northwest Ohio Educational Service Center in Archbold, Pioneer Career & Technology Center, and Wood County Port Authority.
Lucas County proposed a partnership between the county, City of Toledo, Wood County, Northwestern Water and Sewer District and TMACOG for the evaluation and implementation of a regional water system in its application to the LGIF.
The City of Toledo also submitted an application for its share of the evaluation and implementation of the regional water system in collaboration with the county and TMACOG.
Lucas County Clerk of Courts office submitted an application for a project to make use of digital imaging equipment in Lucas and Wood counties for scanning and maintaining court records. Both counties could provide those services to smaller counties in the area.
The Wood County Port Authority is seeking funds to form a partnership with several townships and villages in the southern part of the county for possible collaboration on safety issues in the area around the CSX intermodal facility in North Baltimore.
The Northwest Ohio Educational Service Center applied for a grant to fund a feasibility study on services provided by the organization and possible collaboration with the Northern Buckeye Education Council.
Information about other local applications was not available at press time.
The LGIF program has $45 million earmarked for local projects with $36 million in revolving loan funds and $9 million for grants of up to $100,000 per project application.
Each submitted project application is under competitive review and awards will be announced at the LGIF Council Meeting on June 1 in Columbus.
“The strong response we have received on the Local Government Innovation Fund is an important indicator of the need our Ohio communities are facing: finding ways to save money while still providing valuable community services,” Christiane Schmenk, director of the ODOD, stated in a press release about the applications.