This afternoon, the Ohio EPA has sent a letter to the Munson Township Trustees telling them that because of all the recent changes they have made to their clean water grant proposal, the proposal can no longer be considered for the 2010 program.
But the rejection letter also goes on to tell the Township trustees what they should do if they want to apply for the same grant again in 2011.
The key excerpt from the Ohio EPA letter is this:
“Because information from this planning and design work is needed in order for Ohio EPA to determine fundability of the project, the project is clearly not fundable in the 2010 program year. For this reason, Ohio EPA has no other choice than to by-pass the project for funding this program year.
If Munson Township is further interested in pursuing funding through the WRRSP for the Fowler’s Mill project, we encourage you to submit a nomination for the 2011 program year. We will release a request for nominations for 2011 later this year. If the Township decides to submit another nomination, we will want to meet with Township representatives, the Fowler’s Mill ownership, and their consultants to develop a scope of work for planning and design of the project, as well as to discuss how costs for property rights and land acquisition will be determined.
A complete PDF of the Fowlers Mill Ohio EPA rejection letter is here.
So while the door for this taxpayer boondoggle has been closed for 2010, the opportunity for another crack at the money still exists for next year.
However, in defense of the Ohio EPA, the agency has done a solid job — and from the requirements requested within their letter outlining future applications, looks like they will continue to do a solid job — of ensuring that the Munson Township trustees offer a real plan with measurable quality results before they consider a request for multiple millions of taxpayer dollars to be paid to a private entity.
Northeast Ohio Golf congratulates the Ohio EPA on this clear thinking and appropriate action.