Eagle County awards 2014 community grants | VailDaily.com

Eagle County awards 2014 community grants

Daily staff report

EAGLE — The Eagle County Board of Commissioners will award approximately $2.3 million in 2014 to 60 local agencies and nonprofits through its community grant program. The funds are a combination of county dollars and Payments in Lieu of Taxes received from the federal government, which are disbursed by the Eagle County and Roaring Fork school districts. The county’s portion will come from General Fund reserves over and above the $14 million reserve level set by the commissioners as part of the 2014 budget process.

“We are putting our funds to work in the community while maintaining healthy reserves,” said Commissioner Sara Fisher. “While we know this level of funding won’t be available every year, our fiscal prudence over the last few years has allowed for these investments in 2014,” she said.

Applications were due to the county in November. In total, 73 requests amounting to approximately $3.7 million were received. “The quality of the applications received was excellent,” said Commissioner Jill Ryan. “The selection process was not easy; every applicant was deserving of consideration.”

Applications were evaluated based on their alignment with the commissioners’ strategic priorities: Social investment, economic vitality, sustainable communities and environmental stewardship. “These grants represent a partnership with organizations that provide services and projects that further our long-term goals,” said Commissioner Kathy Chandler-Henry.

Of the 60 agencies that were awarded grants, 28 support programs and services in the Roaring Fork Valley. In addition, grant amounts for Blue Lake Preschool in Carbondale, Family Learning Center in Edwards, Response serving Pitkin and western Eagle County, and the Vail Valley Charitable Fund’s Eagle County Smiles program are still under discussion. A complete list of funded organizations and amounts can be found at http://www.eaglecounty.us/communitygrants.

The 2014 community grant program marked the county’s return to a competitive grant process after a three-year suspension, during which only initiatives that directly supported critical services were funded. Disposition of the program in future years will depend on available funds. For more information, contact Assistant County Manager Rachel Oys at 970-328-8858 or rachel.oys@eaglecounty.us.

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