September 14, 2014

Omer sets 2-percent grant request priorities

Posted

OMER — The Omer City Council settled on which projects it would submit for the Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe’s 2-percent grant requests during its March 26 meeting.

The largest requested sum is money to work on South Michigan Avenue. The city is requesting $27,000 for that project.

City Clerk Sue Oliver said the city began work on the road last year by pulverizing and shaping it, and wants to get it blacktopped this year. If awarded, the grant money would go toward the repair work on the road, though she said the city intends on completing work on the road this year regardless of whether or not it gets the grant.

The council is also seeking $25,000 to pay on the water department loan for the city’s water plant and tower. That accounts for the annual payment the city makes on the loan, and would go entirely toward the principle of the balance. Oliver said it would help reduce the amount of interest the city will pay on the loan and as such, help reduce the payments over the life of the loan.

The city has also requested $2,030 to go toward getting surfacing materials for the playground at the city park. Mayor Alice Sproule said she underestimated the cost of surfacing when she originally applied for, and received, a playground grant last year. She said she wants to get wood fiber, similar to the sort found in the Pinconning Park playground.

Oliver said the materials are required as a safety measure, and are compliant under the Americans with Disabilities Act.

“We want it to be a nice place for kids and families to go to,” she said.

Omer also received permission from the Iosco-Arenac District Library to apply for new children’s computers at the Little Eagle’s Nest Library, which would replace the old computers already there.

Oliver said the grant amount is $6,400, but she added that even if they only get enough for one computer, the council would be happy.

The city is also one of several municipalities in Arenac County that applied for funds to go toward the rail trail project, which would create a walking and biking trail from Au Gres to Omer. Omer is asking for $4,500 for the trail. The long-term goal for the project is to link it to trails in Iosco and Bay counties.

Omer is also seeking a new commercial mower with a grant proposal of $7,599.

“Our current ones have broken down and been repaired, but we’ve had nothing new in a while,” Oliver said.

City Hall could also see some renovation work done if a grant for $5,000 gets approved. Oliver said the conference room there, where the city holds its meetings, has not been updated since 1984, and is due to get some new chairs, tables, and drywall. It also needs work on the ceiling and a fresh coat of paint, she said.

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