Council: Aggressive grant program pays off in bigger bucks

April 01, 2005
Santa Paula City Council

Santa Paula has become aggressive in seeking grants, the City Council learned at the March 21 meeting, and the new focus on obtaining grant funding pays off in bigger bucks for city projects and programs.

By Peggy KellySanta Paula TimesSanta Paula has become aggressive in seeking grants, the City Council learned at the March 21 meeting, and the new focus on obtaining grant funding pays off in bigger bucks for city projects and programs.Finance Director Tina Rivera told the council that grants have funded projects and programs ranging from the lighted crosswalks to the school police officer. “These grants would not be possible without the dedication and the hard work put in by the members of the departments” that sought the grants, Rivera added.In the current fiscal year the city has received $17,000 from the Ventura County Area on Aging to replace the Senior Center floor, funds for a Senior Nutrition Coordinator, and a whopping $129,870 from FEMA for Santa Paula Fire Department equipment and materials, a grant that required a 10 percent match. Grant sources – specifically FEMA and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security - have funded SPFD gas masks and radios, as well a thermal imaging camera.
Some grants are easy to see – such as $117,000 for Safe Routes to Schools that provides the lighted crosswalks at major intersections – while others are funding projects such as recycling efforts for beverage containers and used oil. The Santa Paula Police Department has received funds for officers in the middle and high schools, for a motorcycle and bike cop, and bulletproof vests. The city received a $500,000 grant for homeownership assistance, a program to be implemented within the next few months, said Rivera.Some grants require matching funds from the city, ranging from a small portion to 50 percent of the total allocation, while other grants do not require that the city dip into its own coffers.Rivera noted that there are “various applications for funding still outstanding. Staff will continue to follow the progress on these applications and seek any new grant funding opportunities.”



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