“We are very thankful to the Champaign County Commissioners for funding this important initiative,” Kyle Hall, president of the CEP Board of Trustees, said. “The COVID-19 grant fund can really make a difference in our county. It will help small businesses bridge the gap in revenue during the shutdown and help them meet safety requirements for reopening, so that consumers will return to them with confidence.”
Through 5 p.m. May 15, qualifying local businesses may complete and submit a simple application for $500 to $2,500 in grant funds, at www.champaignworks.com/PayItForwardGrant.
Businesses may submit their applications directly from the website. But if they prefer, they may print out the application form, complete it, and drop it in the Champaign Economic Partnership mailbox (next to the CEP office door, inside the ATM lobby of Security National Bank, 3 Monument Square, Urbana), or email their completed, scanned application to the CEP at email@example.com, by the 5 p.m. May 15 deadline.
“The commissioners want to support the health and vitality of the Champaign County business community during the pandemic,” said County Commissioner Steve Hess, who serves on the CEP Board of Trustees. “Through this grant fund we want to help our local businesses get through this crisis by supplementing the support they’re getting from the state and federal government.”
To be eligible for the grant program, commercial or retail businesses must have a storefront in Champaign County (cannot be home-based or nonprofit), have fewer than 50 employees, be current on local, state and federal obligations such as taxes and assessments, been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, and, if a franchise, have no more than two storefronts in the county and not be corporate owned.
CEP Director Marcia Bailey said the grants may be used for operating expenses such as rent, utilities, payroll, and the cost of supplies and modifications needed to comply with safety requirements for reopening. Grant money cannot be used for taxes or other assessments. Grant recipients will be required to report to the grant committee how they spent the money.
“Our grant committee desires to make this a self-perpetuating fund so that money will be available to support future economic sustainability in our community,” Bailey said. “Through the Pay It Forward provision of the program, we will encourage grant recipients to contribute financially to the Champaign County Small Business Grant Fund once their businesses are back on their feet – in an amount equal to or greater than their grant.”
She added, “Our small businesses are essential to the vitality of Champaign County. We want to do what we can to help get them back on track, to continue providing jobs and valuable products and services that make our county a better place to live and work.”
For grant guidelines and the application, visit www.champaignworks.com/PayItForwardGrant
Data show county’s communities are stable, with opportunities to build on a strong base.
By Christopher Selmek, Urbana Daily Citizen - firstname.lastname@example.org
The North Lewisburg Village Council voted to begin the process of creating a police department on Tuesday. The council went into executive session to discuss the village’s current policing contract, then returned to public session for the vote. According to Mayor Cheryl Hollingsworth, the village will continue to contract with Mechanicsburg until the end of the year.
Following the executive session, council decided to offer the position of police chief to Mechanicsburg Police Capt. Scott Bodey, who had been assigned to the village. Bodey accepted the position, Hollingsworth said.
“We’ve been talking about this for a year, since our separation from the county sheriff’s office, and we always wanted to be more independent,” said Hollingsworth. “We’re very grateful to the Mechanicsburg Police Department for all their good work. I’ve talked with Mayor (Benjamin) Layne and Chief (John) Alexander in Mechanicsburg, and everyone has been very supportive of our decision.”
Council unanimously approved the scheduling of Spring Clean-Up Week from April 25 to May 1. This will coincide with the county’s Scrap Tire Disposal Day and Electronic Waste Day, scheduled for April 25. Council discussed having Dumpsters available, but delayed setting dates due to the absence of village Administrator Andy Yoder.
Council unanimously approved a residential trash contract extension, which Fiscal Officer Jennifer McCombs said had been negotiated by Yoder at a lower price than the village’s current rate. Under the new contract, seniors 65 and older will get a discount of 10% and every resident will get a 96-gallon trash can for free.
Also at this meeting, council unanimously approved changing council meetings from 7 to 6:30 p.m. the second Tuesday of each month.
“I was reading the very first minutes to the first council meeting for the village of North Lewisburg, and they decided that they would start the meeting at twilight, and I thought that was the sweetest thing,” said Hollingsworth. “But we have a specific time since we have clocks now.”
By Christopher Selmek - Urbana Daily Citizen
The North Lewisburg Village Council unanimously approved a list of committee assignments suggested by Mayor Cheryl Hollingsworth and Administrator Andy Yoder on Tuesday. The council also unanimously authorized the administrator to sit in place of the mayor on the Champaign County Health District Board and Advisory Council.
Committees established for Fiscal Year 2019 include the finance committee (mayor, administrator, Fiscal Officer Jennifer McCombs, council President Ted Murphy, council member Matt Warner and council member John Collier); building, grounds and infrastructure committee (mayor, Collier, council members Robin Street, Gwen Beech and Warner); Champaign County Library Board (mayor and administrator); Northeast Champaign County Fire District board (mayor and administrator); Records Retention (mayor, Law Director Harley Davidson, fiscal officer, Administrative Assistant Jayne Leiter and council member Beech); Streets (administrator, council members Jennifer Watson, Street and Murphy); Logan-Union-Champaign Regional Planning Commission (mayor and administrator); Park Advisory Board (Water/Wastewater Superintendent Trevor Clark, Community Advisor Karen Holycross, Business Advisor Deanna Summerfield, senior citizen representative Bob Davidson and Triad Junior Baseball Association President John Roberts); Zoning Board of Appeals (Todd Freyhof, Max Coates, Steve Reinhart and Gary Yoder); village Planning Commission (mayor, council President Murphy, Barry First, Rick Bails and council member Gwen Beech); Zoning and Subdivision (council members Collier, Watson, Murphy and Street); Comprehensive Planning (mayor, administrator and Warner).
Also at this meeting, Will Dhume, youth pastor of Bible Baptist Church in Marysville, thanked village members and the council for their support after his house burned down on Jan. 11. The Dhume family had a residence at the north end of the village and say they plan to rebuild, though they are temporarily renting an apartment in Marysville. According to Dhume, they received many free gifts of clothes, money, blankets and other items they had not asked for, and Cardinal’s Pizza hosted a drop-off location for them to receive donations.
By Christopher Selmek, Urbana Daily Citizen
The North Lewisburg Village Council on Tuesday unanimously approved a resolution declaring the week of May 10-17 to be “Spring Clean Up Week.” Containers for garbage and recyclables will be available for residents during the week.
Free community yard sales will be allowed without a village permit May 10, 11 and 12 during daylight hours.
In response to several complaints, council approved the installation of signs barring parking on the west side of North Gregory Street.
Also at this meeting, council unanimously approved a mosquito spraying contract with A1-Able for the same cost as last year.
Invisible Fence Brand has donated more than 18,700 pet oxygen masks to fire stations all over the United States and Canada. A reported 180-plus pets have been saved by the donated masks, one family dog most recently in Baltimore by the Baltimore County Fire Department.
“When a family suffers the tragedy of a fire, lives are turned upside down,” said Ed Hoyt, director of Invisible Fence Brand. “Pets are valued family members, so we want families to know that their pet can be cared for if tragedy strikes.”
North Lewisburg and surrounding areas are joining the ranks of cities like Seattle, Chicago, Denver and Salt Lake City in receiving donated pet oxygen masks from Project Breathe program.
Although the number of pets that die in fires is not an official statistic kept by the U.S. Fire Administration, industry web sites and sources have cited an estimated 40,000 to 150,000 pets die in fires each year, most succumbing to smoke inhalation. In most states, emergency responders are unequipped to deal with the crisis. The loss is terrible for the family, heart-wrenching for firefighters.
The company has set up a website, www.invisiblefence.com/O2, where fire personnel can make requests for their departments.
A Memorial Day Parade will take place in North Lewisburg at 10 a.m. on Monday, May 28. The parade will form at 9:45 a.m. in front of Carter’s Auto Service at 55 E. Townsend St.
Following the 10 a.m. parade, services will be held at 10:30 a.m. at the veterans memorial located in North Lewisburg Park on East Street. The Triad High School Band will perform patriotic songs, and Tim Kemper will be the featured speaker.
Those attending may wish to bring lawn chairs. Any questions regarding the parade and service may be directed to the village offices at 937-747-3645.
Village of North Lewisburg, Ohio
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