The Bourbon Town Council met on August 9th for their regular town meeting.
Grant writer, Shannon McLeod from Priority Project Resources participated in the meeting online and discussed the funding options for the Waterworks Improvement Project. She told the Bourbon Town Council they thought they would pursue the water project without an OCRA Grant because they were hopeful that they could use a loan from the State Revolving Fund (REF) Program. She said, “We hoped they would give us quite a bit of the $4.7 million in what they call a forgivable loan, otherwise known as a grant.” She said she was still hopeful but the issue is she won’t know how much of a grant the town will be eligible for until last September or early October. If the town is granted at least $700,000 they would not have to apply for an OCRA Grant.
As a backup plan, if Bourbon is not awarded a grant or if the grant is too small, they could apply for an OCRA Grant. The OCRA funding could be up to $700,000 but the proposal is due September 30th and at that point, they might not know if the town is getting an SRF grant.
McLeod recommended applying for the OCRA Grant and if the SRF Grant comes through they wouldn’t complete the application process for the OCRA Grant but if the SRF grant is $700,000 they wouldn’t use OCRA. If the grant from SRF was $300,000 they could still apply for the OCRA grant and use them both giving the Town of Bourbon $1 million towards the water project.
McLeod said using the OCRA Grant would delay the project by about 4 to 6 months as they wait for an award notification from OCRA. She also told council members being able to obtain the additional $700,000 toward the project will reduce the rates for town residents by $5 to $7 monthly.
The Bourbon Town Council approved submitting a proposal to OCRA. There will be an additional cost of $1,000 for the administrative fees and the cost to advertise the public hearing notice.