Coal Grove looks for new route to Carlyle cleanup

Published 12:00 am Friday, September 30, 2005


- Just one day meant $1,761,750 to the village of Coal Grove.

That's how late their application for a Clean Ohio Revitalization Grant was, causing them to be rejected for the funding necessary to clean up the former Carlyle Tile site, an eyesore on State Route 52 for more than 25 years.

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Mayor Larry McDaniel and Clerk-Treasurer Deborah Fields said that the denial was the result of an error by the shipping company they used to mail the application.

Fields said she wasn't as concerned with the failure of the original plan as long as the project was completed.

"We're just going to go another route," Fields said. "As long as we get the money we don't care."

The "new route" was the topic of discussion at a meeting at the Coal Grove Village Hall on Thursday. The new plan still involves Clean Ohio funding (in the form of a $750,000 assistance grant), but adds a couple hundred thousand from property owner McGinnis Inc. and a $200,000 sub-grant from the federal Environmental Protection Agency.

The new route was engineered with the help of the Ohio Department of Development, represented at the meeting by the Director of the Office of Urban Renewal, John Magill.

"We in the Department of Development remain committed to assisting Coal Grove and Lawrence County with the Carlyle Tile project," Magill said.

If all the funding sources come through, they should total $1.2 million, enough for the Carlyle Tile cleanup as it was estimated by SRW Environmental Services, the company heading up the project.

None of the funding is locked in yet, but Magill said that because the monies are non-competitive he felt good about Coal Grove's chances.

"We don't have official approval, we're going through that process right now," Magill said. "But what we're proposing has been done elsewhere, therefore we believe it could be done in Ohio. And we've been steward with U.S. EPA funds at the Ohio Department of Development."

The one caveat with the EPA funding is that the property must be held by a non-profit organization, so McGinnis Inc. would have to sign the property over to a non-profit group, who would then sign the land back over to the company when the project was completed.

This sort of arrangement is not that uncommon according to Lawrence County Community Action Organization Assistant Director Ralph Kline.

"A lot of times you'll deal with private and non-profit partnerships in developments and things like that, especially with economic developments," Kline said.

The process begun in July must now begin again, with more public hearings and more red tape. In the meanwhile, Mayor McDaniel must wait, and hope that this time he'll get the money he needs to proceed.

"I think we're making progress. It sounds like it's going to go Š hopefully," McDaniel said.