COLUMBUS — State Representative Bob Cupp (R-Lima) and State Senator Matt Huffman (R-Lima) have announced the introduction of the state’s Capital Budget, which invests $2.62 billion statewide, including $500,000 in funding for projects specific to Allen County.
If approved as submitted, $200,000 would go to repurpose vacant land, including demolishing buildings and environmental cleanup for future use of the Ohio Department of Transportation and Allen County Engineer.
Included is $200,000 for Cornerstone of Hope to increase mental health care in Lima, and $100,000 would be spent for upgrades to the Allen County Jail.
“I am pleased that the introduced Capital Budget bill addresses some much-needed projects in Allen County. Funds from this legislation will help our local economy and provide for the well-being of our citizens,” Cupp said.
“The Allen County projects funded through the Capital Budget stand to make our community safer and healthier while also increasing our local government’s capacity to operate efficiently and respond more effectively to constituents’ needs,” Huffman said.
The proposed bill also allocates for community projects — $600,000 in state funds for Auglaize County and $610,000 for Van Wert County. These projects provide for many different renovations and recreational improvements throughout local communities.
Auglaize County has $250,000 earmarked for Grand Lake shoreline water quality improvements, another $250,000 for a New Bremen Bike Path, $100,000 for a splash pad in St. Marys.
In Van Wert County, $200,000 has been set aside for Niswonger Performing Arts Center, $150,000 has been designated to go to improvements at the Middle Point ballpark, $75,000 will go toward improvements at Van Wert’s Smiley Park ball field, $50,000 each is sought for improvements to Van Wert’s Jubilee Park and the Van Wert Rotary Athletic Complex, $25,000 is earmarked for the Miami Erie Canal Towpath Trail, $25,000 is set aside for renovations to the Delphos Swimming Pool, $22,000 is designated for extension of the Ohio City Warrior Trail and $13,000 is proposed to be spent for improvements to Van Wert County Park District trails.
“Providing additional funds for local community projects is a way to improve quality of life in our state,” Rep. Craig Riedel (R-Defiance) said. “Our hope is that by funding these projects more people will look at Northwest Ohio as a great place to live,” said Riedel, who represents both Van Wert and Auglaize counties.
In Putnam County, $240,000 is set aside for projects. Of that $100,000 would go toward The Arthur-Lugibihl Community Center restoration, $75,000 would go for the Leipsic Parks tennis courts and boat dock and $65,000 would be designated for downtown Ottawa’s “Paul’s Lot.”
“I want to thank the local officials for bringing attention to these very important projects for the communities in Putnam County,” said State Representative Jim Hoops (R-Napoleon). “This gives communities an opportunity to complete projects for their constituents that they would not otherwise be able to do because of lack of local resources.”
Reach Sam Shriver at 567-242-0409.