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Alpena County Youth and Rec gives $500K in grants

News Photo by Steve Schulwitz Culligan Plaza in Alpena was one of 33 projects that received funding from the Alpena County Youth and Recreation tax. The fountain is slated for a complete renovation in the future.

ALPENA — The Alpena County Youth and Recreation Committee has approved $500,623 in grants for 33 programs around the region.

Committee members considered $769,545 in requests, meaning the committee did not recommend funding all of the requests in full.

The Alpena County Board of Commissioners must give final approval to the grants.

County-owned facilities received a large portion of the money, including the Plaza Pool, which would receive $80,000 for operations, more than any other individual program.

Other approved requests include:

* Sunken Lake Campground would get $40,000 for a bathhouse,

* Long Lake Park would get $34,100 toward a new boat ramp.

* Michigan State University Extension would get $40,000 for 4H youth programing.

* Alpena Huron Shore Babe Ruth would get $34,800 for new fences for its ballfields,

* and the Boys and Girls Club of Alpena would receive $40,000 to help cover the cost of construction of a new club.

The city would receive $20,000 to help pay for a proposed remodel of Culligan Plaza in downtown Alpena.

Youth and Rec Committee Chairman Tony Suszek said in an email that voters in 2010 approved the 0.5-mill property tax — which costs the owner of a $100,000 house about $25 a year — to support recreational activities and to develop new or improve existing recreational sites in Alpena County.

He called the program a great success that helped keep many recreational programs in business and helped keep registration costs for participants in check.

Voters have renewed the millage twice and the county will ask them to do so again next year.

The Youth and Recreation Committee is made of up eight members each appointed by each of the eight commissioners on the county board.

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