ST. CLAIRSVILLE-A “long awaited” Paving project in Pultney and Union townships moving forward after receiving a number of bids from contractors for the project.
The bids were opened during Wednesday’s Belmont County Board of Commissioners meeting. Commissioner Josh Meyer opened the three bids, including $173,078.50 from Shelly and Sands of St. Clairsville; $156,773.10 from Cast and Baker Corp. from Cannonsburg, Pennsylvania; and $185,440 from NLS Asphalt and Paving of St. Clairsville.
After the bids were opened, Meyer filed a motion to submit all bids to the Belomar Regional Council for consideration. Commissioners JP Dutton and Jerry Echemann agreed. A recommendation will most likely be made at next week’s Commissioners’ meeting.
The project is funded by a $159,145 Community Development Block grant that the county received last year. The CDBG program helps fund low- to middle-income community improvement projects. This project involves paving approximately one mile of roadway in each community – Toad Hollow Road in Pultney Township and Jordan/Church Hill Road and Irwin Street in Union Township.
After the meeting, Frank Schaffer, president of the Belmont County Trustees Association and trustee of Pultney Township, said that was the case “concerned” waiting for the offer to open.
“Funds are finally being released at this point. It was a long-awaited year, actually it’s been a little longer since I started working on the scholarships. I know we have a lot of patient people out there waiting for these roads to be paved, but it will finally bear fruit.” he said.
Schaffer, who led the project, said that when he became president of the association, he began looking at township roads that needed improvement.
“I knew there was a need for band-aids out there and I saw sections and I tried to look for grants that would help those people.” he said, adding that the CDBG funding opportunity is an important resource for the county’s communities.
“This will bring paved roads to people who would most likely never get a chance to get a paved road in the future unless you had the money or the upfront payment to do so.” he said.
Schaffer said he hopes to continue applying for the scholarship; however, he said townships are no longer eligible for CDBG funds.
“I think this is a great loss for the communities. … There are only two grants townships can get for road paving — Community Development Block Grant, which are no longer funded; and there’s Ohio Public Works (Commission), which is very competitive and really stretches township budgets. You need at least 26% match to start the competition.” he said.
On other matters, John Waugh, a member of the Belmont American Legion Post 312, announced that the Legion will be hosting a spaghetti dinner fundraiser Sunday from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Belmont Gym. The money raised at the dinner will be used to fund various projects in the community.
Waugh said Legion members place flags on veterans’ graves in five cemeteries on Veterans Day, host the Belmont Village Memorial Day ceremony, dispose of flags each year on Flag Day, and award scholarships to three Union Local High School students every year.
Waugh invited the commissioners to attend the event and thanked them for their work in the county.