Starke County Commissioners Presented with Stellar Communities Funding Request

Starke County Highway Superintendent Rik Ritzler, and Constellation of Starke Executive Team Member, presented the county commissioners with a proposal to provide a commitment for matching grant funds for certain projects within the Regional Stellar Communities Designation Regional Development Plan. 

If Starke County is selected as the Regional Stellar Communities Designation winner, Ritzler said the county would need to come up with about $1.8 million in matching funds over four years to assist with five projects in the unincorporated areas of the county.  Those projects include a Bass Lake Beach and Waterpark, connecting roads, Koontz Lake Community Center, Koontz Lake park improvements, and San Pierre Park. 

With matching funds, a total of $10 million will be used to complete these projects over the next four years, if the county is designated.

Ritzler said that many private donors have contributed money that may lessen the county’s matching fund obligation.  CEDIT Roads and Bridges Funds can be used to fund the grant match as well as Rainy Day Funds in addition to the private donations. 

The commissioners unanimously approved a motion to move forward.  The same request will be before the county council members at their next meeting on Monday, Aug. 19.

The communities of North Judson, Knox and Hamlet will be providing match money for projects specific to those jurisdictions.