by Lacey Watt, Daily Report

HANCOCK COUNTY — With the new year starting, the Indiana Department of Transportation (INDOT) announced last week that they are now accepting applications for the spring 2024 call for projects from the Community Crossings Matching Grant Program, and many cities and towns plan to take advantage.

The state has awarded almost $1.5 billion in matching funds to towns, cities and counties across the state since 2016 to support local road and bridge projects. This long-term funding for the Community Crossings Grant Program was a part of House Enrolled Act 1002, passed by the Indiana legislature and signed into law by Gov. Eric Holcomb in April 2017.

With applications due at the end of January, Street Commissioner for the city of Greenfield, Tyler Rankins, said they are applying for the grant, and in the past the grant has allowed them to get a lot more streets resurfaced, ones they usually wouldn’t be able to do.

Rankins said that this year INDOT has raised the amount to receive from $1,000,000 to $1,500,000 and the city plans to apply for the full amount. In 2023, Rankins said the city council designated $500,000 from ARPA funds for the next four years, so that amount will go toward the match grant along with $1,000,000 in MVH and Local Road and Street monies.

“I have picked many streets off of our Asset Management Plan for resurfacing, but we will not have a true list of streets until the grant approval which may not be until March,” Rankins said. “I will say a $3,000,000 dollar resurfacing packet, with only 50% in local monies, will be huge for the city and if we can maintain this over the next three years with the ARPA money, our streets will be in very good shape.”

Stephen Pool, street commissioner for the town of New Palestine, said that they had already submitted their application for the grant and plan to apply the funds to projects including rehabilitation/preservation treatments in Crystal Heights, Gem Road and Harting Farms.

Stephen said that Crystal Heights is slated for 1.5 inch mill and overlay with ADA curb ramp reconstruction, and sections of Gem Road will receive HMA patching and Harting Farms will undergo crack sealing.

“As always, the Town of New Palestine is appreciative of any funding match INDOT provides,” Stephen said. “A town of our size receives 75% of the funding match, so this is a great way to maximize our resources and keep our roads and ADA ramps at an excellent level of service for our community.”

According to the press release announcement of the grant, cities and towns with a population of fewer than 10,000 will receive funds using a 75/25 match while cities and towns with a population of greater than 10,000 will receive funds using a 50/50 match. Counties with a population of fewer than 50,000 will receive funds using a 75/25 match while those with a population of greater than 50,000 will receive funds using a 50/50 match.

Hancock County will also be applying to receive funds at a 50/50 match. Gary Pool, county engineer, said those funds will probably go toward more micro-surfacing of roads, something the county has worked on in the past.

In the northern part of the county, Fortville town manager Joe Renner said that while they do not plan on applying for the grant this round, they will try to apply for the second round.

Approximately 10 minutes down U.S. 36, McCordsville plans to apply for funding for both the spring and fall this year. Tim Gropp, McCordsville town manager, said they are allocating the maximum amount allowed for local matching in hopes of maximizing any grant funding awarded.

Gropp said they have not finalized their list of projects yet due to working on estimated costs and timing to see which projects they would want to submit in the spring versus the fall.

“This is a critical program to our community as we can stretch our local dollars significantly farther to keep our local roads in good shape,” Gropp said. “We will be reevaluating our road grades this year as we do every two years to see what roads need to be included in the paving list.”

In order to be considered for this round of funding, All application materials must be submitted by Wednesday, Jan. 31, at 5 p.m. eastern time to be considered. Communities receiving awards will be notified in the spring.’

SOURCE: Daily Reporter

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