City of Kingston to apply for $10 million in state funds

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Rondout LIghthouse, at the entrance to the river

KINGSTON – The City of Kingston is hoping to be awarded a large amount of state funding through the 2019 round of Consolidated Funding Application grants (CFA) for 12 major projects.

The common council voted Tuesday night to authorize Mayor Steven Noble to apply for just over $10 million in various CFA grants.

Major projects seeking funding include the Rondout River Port Shoreline Stabilization, the Hasbrouck CSO Sewer Separation, the Kingston Greenline and the city/county bus merger, among others.

Common Council President James Noble said without the large percentage of costs for these projects that would be covered through the various CFA grants, some of the projects will not be possible and the city is not willing to subsidize costs with tax increases.

“To us, every $150,000 that the city spends is a one percent tax increase,” said Noble. “Here we’re getting that kind of money. We would never borrow it and put that kind of tax increase on the residents without grant money.”

The grants do include, on average, an approximately 10 percent match from the city, but Noble added that they are in a good position right now, even with this volume of grant applications.

“Right now, the city seems to be pretty stable and we have an additional fund balance, so it gives us a little flexibility to do more grants because we have additional funding to pay our share, our percentage of the grants,” he said.

Some of the projects are more desperate to win grant funding through the CFAs. One, according to Finance Committee Chairman Alderman Douglas Koop, would be the improvements to Dietz Stadium where the city has been losing potential income due to its current state.

“We’ve lost a lot of revenue in terms of meets, tourism, motels, restaurants and so forth; so, we need to get that back,” said Koop. “That’s a big one. That’s probably one of the biggest ones [projects],” he said.

Koop added that the city did very well in the 2018 CFA process and expects the city will do the same this year.

The final deadline for CFA applications is July 27.

Two years ago, Kingston was the Hudson Valley region’s $10 million Downtown Revitalization Initiative winner.