Clean Ohio program key to economy

Published 12:00 am Sunday, July 3, 2011

Anyone who doubts the value of the state’s former industrial site revitalization program need only drive through Ironton and Lawrence County to see results and potential.

The state’s Clean Ohio Revitalization Grants program, which is designed to invest tax dollars into returning former brownfield sites to being productive parcels of property on the tax rolls, has been a tremendous benefit for southern Ohio and specifically Lawrence County.

A variety of projects have been funded over the years including demolition of the River Valley Health Systems building and remediation at the former Honeywell site.

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And now three more projects have been put on track to begin revitalization.

The city may get more than $1.5 million to continue work on its riverfront, a project that may one day provide significant recreation and commercial value for the city.

Another project, cleaning up the former Alpha Portland cement plant site, also got some much-needed funding.

With a business waiting in the wings to develop a facility, and bring with it a handful of much-needed jobs, funding this project is a no-brainer.

An additional $200,000 may come to cleanup the Superior Cement site in Pedro.

At a time when lawmakers and the public are scrutinizing every expense by the government it is important that people realize this program isn’t about “pork” funding. It is not about just throwing money to local political districts.

The Clean Ohio program and the projects it funds are about revitalizing Ohio one piece of land at a time.