Some additional grant funding may be available to help build a community center in North Judson. Clerk-Treasurer Alicia Collins told the town council Monday that the Indiana Office of Community and Rural Affairs has increased the maximum amount of grant funding to $500,000 from $400,000 for the fall application round.
However, that would mean a greater commitment from North Judson and Wayne Township. “We’re working with KIRPC to just continue to use our amount that we are purchasing the land for, as well as the appraisal amount, to make our grant match because that would be $50,000 instead of $40,000 if we choose to use the extra amount,” Collins said. “We could always go lower, but you don’t really want to.”
In total, the proposed community center is expected to cost over $800,000. Organizers had originally planned to apply for the grant during the spring round, but the application was delayed as town council members reconsidered the proposed location.
With the site now finalized, Collins says the project continues moving ahead. “Letters of why we need a community center have been coming in,” she says. “We’ve gotten about three of them, and the donations have started again. And within the last few weeks, I have been able to meet with the North Judson Kiwanis and Starke County Community Services. Both discussions were very positive. We got feedback from the community and Community Services, and they’re very excited and willing to get more involved.”
She adds that over 60 percent of the required income surveys have been completed and returned. Now the town’s looking for volunteers to go door-to-door to help gather the rest.
Additionally, a request for qualifications has been published for engineers interested in working on the project, with responses due Monday, August 15. A letter of intent for the grant funding is due August 19, with the grant application itself due October 14.