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Hillsboro to seek grant for child care

Staff writer

Hillsboro City Council voted Tuesday to pay Ranson Citycode Financial $7,500 to write a $600,000 grant for a child care center that has been high on the city’s strategic plan since the plan was last updated.

City administrator Matt Stiles said donations had been raised toward the project, mostly through Hillsboro Community Foundation.

Others who have given money toward a child care center include the health department, the extension district and the school district.

“So far, they’ve got $10,000 in the bank,” Stiles said.

Stiles said the nonprofit organization formed for the project had commitments for several thousand dollars more.

The organization wants to raise $2 million, which is the architect’s project estimate.

That amount would completely renovate Trinity Mennonite Church, which has donated space for the center.

Grant applications for the proposed community development block grant are due at the end of the year. Awards will be made in early March.

Stiles said it was hoped the child care center will be open by the start of the 2023-2024 school year.

Rosemary Saunders of Ranson said she expected Hillsboro to have a better chance of getting a grant because the county does not have enough child care facilities.

The maximum match the child care center would have to pay is 25% of the grant award, she said.

“The more money you can bring in, the more points you get in the application process,” Saunders said.

Nuisance properties

In other business, council members added 114 S. Birch St. to their list of nuisance properties and set a public hearing for Sept. 20 so the property owners, who no longer live in Hillsboro, could come make a case for the property not being condemned.

Code enforcement officer Doug Dick reported to council members that the structure was unfit for occupancy because of disrepair and damage from deterioration, neglect and abandonment and that the exterior walls, eaves, and foundation allowed weather and wildlife to enter the structure. Dick also reported that exterior walls had tears.

The structure is abandoned and may create an attractive nuisance for children, he said.

Recycling

The city may increase the price of recycling, but no decision was made at Tuesday’s meeting.

Residential customers could see their recycling charge go from $2.50 to $3.50 a month.

Last modified July 27, 2022

 

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