Adams Invites Applications for $5 Million in Covid Grants

Adams County has been given a Covid relief shot in the arm with a $5 million dollar grant that Commissioner Marty Qually called the “most significant grant program in the county’s history.”

The Board of Commissioners approved guidelines for applications for the funds at its monthly yesterday. Before submitting projects for consideration, potential applicants can review the guidelines Oct. 1 to Oct. 23. Applications may be submitted beginning Oct. 24 until the deadline at midnight, Nov. 21.

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As part of the State & Local Fiscal Recovery Fund Program from the US Department of the Treasury, the focus of the Adams Response and Recovery Fund (ARRF) will be utility infrastructure improvements and large-scale ($250,000 or more) community development projects. Eligible applicants include municipalities, municipal authorities, economic development organizations, and nonprofit organizations. Partnership projects are encouraged.

The Board of Commissioners has established certain project types as ARRF funding priorities, namely those that:

  • Address Covid 19 and its impact on public health and economic harms to households, small businesses, nonprofits, impacted industries, and the public sector.
  • Invest in water and sewer infrastructure, making necessary investments to improve access to clean drinking water and support vital wastewater and stormwater infrastructure.

The county has created an online portal that can be accessed through the County website or at htpps://arcg.is/1m880v.

A separate recommendation was approved to accept a nearly $9,000 grant through the PA Department of State to be used for enhancement of security, technology, and administration of elections and to increase poll worker stipends and polling place rental.

Commissioner Marty Qually encouraged people to be respectful to those working to administer county elections to create a safe and secure election.

Commissioner Randy Phiel commented that the rental increase was necessary to help with the cleaning and maintenance of those places provided for polling. The rental increased from $45 to $100. The judge of Elections stipend doubled to $240. The Majority Inspector stipend increased from $120 to $190; Minority Inspector, from $140 to $210; clerks and constable, from $120 to $190.

The board meeting opened with the reading of a proclamation to celebrate National 4-H week, Oct. 2 to 8. Local high school junior, Mikayla Keller, addressed the board, saying 4-H programs foster independence, a sense of belonging, and a spirit of generosity that enables young people to master life’s challenges. Learning by doing, she added, encourages youth to think independently, develop leadership goals and grow to become role models for younger members. More than 1,200 youth aged five to eighteen are enrolled in 4-H Clubs around the county. Members learn about science and rocketry, the natural environment, life, and leadership skills.

Prior to reading the proclamation, Commissioner James Martin said that the 4-H is the most extensive youth development program in the nation and something of which to be proud. He added that it depends a great deal on volunteers willing to make a special effort and on the support of parents.

Martin reminded those in attendance that the annual auction to benefit Adams County 4-H Clubs would take place Nov. 4 beginning at 5:00 p.m. at Redding Auction Services, 1085 Table Rock Rd., Gettysburg. He encouraged people to donate to the auction, which features new, antique, and handmade items, as well as theme baskets and gift certificates.

Addressing the 4-H Club representatives, Commissioner Randy Phiel said 4-H members show the desire and discipline to engage in activities that will help them contribute to their families and the community in the future. “No doubt this will pay dividends not only for your community but for you as well,” he said.

Other Board Business

  • The Commission has appointed Isaac Bucher to head a two-year Broadband Community Advisory Task Force to focus on the currently underserved populations in the county. George Mauser will serve as vice-chair. Other members include Gavin Foster, Yeimi Gagliardi, Danijel Lolic, Karl Petrzak, and Megan Shreve, with Commissioner Marty Qually acting  ex-officio. The task force is charged with working in conjunction with staff and any consultants hired to assist in the development of a strategy to address the development and implementation of an affordable countywide broadband network that will ensure equitable and reliable broadband service throughout the county.
  • The board approved a recommendation from Human Resources Director Michele Miller to approve agreements with Capital BlueCross for the support of health insurance benefits for county employees was approved.
  • The board approved a continuation agreement with SBM Electgronics, Inc., of Pittsburg for its Software Assure program to create digital transcripts and a digital record of the Court’s proceedings.
  • Approval was also granted for an agreement with Multi-Health Systems Inc. for the delivery of their service/case management inventory and risk/needs assessments.
  • A recommendation from Children and Youth Services was approved to purchase service agreements with Franklin Family Service, Family Care Services, and CHOR Youth and Family Services.

Featured Image: National 4H Week proclamation participants [Judith Cameron Seniura].

Judith Cameron Seniura is a freelance reporter. She began her journalism career in the early ‘70s and has written for newspapers, magazines, and other media in Ontario, Canada, Alaska, Michigan, Nebraska, San Antonio, Maryland, and Pennsylvania.

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