KINGSTON — The Kingston city’s Community Development Board approved funding in the amount of $550,000 for improvements to the sewer infrastructure on Prospect Street and asbestos remediation/demolition of the former Planet Wings building on Broadway, Tuesday evening.
The funds will be drawn from the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) with $50,000 going to the Planet Wings remediation and $500,000 going to the sewer improvements.
A recent grant of approximately $256,000 was awarded for COVID relief, was also awarded, but can only be used for pandemic relief efforts.
With the imminent repairs to the sewer system, the Broadway Streetscape project, and pandemic related issues, the city was and still is trying to find the best way to allocate the monies.
Mayor Steve Noble said he would like to see the funds, excluding the COVID funds, be allocated diversely across projects.
“We try to spread the money around to be able to benefit the most number of Kingston residents with the amount of funds from HUD,” said Noble. “We have tens of millions of, I could even say a billion, dollars’ worth of sewer projects that we need to do in the city and I would hate to never allocate another dollar of CDBG funds because we’re sinking it all into our sewer system. I think there can be a mix though of municipal bonding, grants and CDBG funds to be able to help make ends meet,” he said.
The original proposal was to allocate $150,000 to the Planet Wings project, but the board decided it would have been a hasty decision. The CDBG funds; however, do need to be allocated within a certain time frame.
Noble and the board agreed the city will begin the applicant process for new funds immediately, to avoid the possibility of losing them.