Amherst town council approves community support grant spending

Amherst town council approved spending $482,110 on community support grants during a special council session on May 21.

Of that fund, $372,110, will be raised via a residential, resource and commercial community support area rate of 7.1 cents per $100 of assessment.

The money raised by the area rate will be used to fund the community support grants issued by council during the 2019-2020 fiscal year, including those given to organizations and granted to groups via the “A” Fresh Start Initiative. It will also be used to cover a $100,000 grant to the YMCA, fund the tax exemption and tax reduction policies was well as the “A” Festival, holiday events, Canada Day, the winter carnival and other events such as Music in Victoria Square and the Tree for Boston.

The remaining $110,000 - $60,000 from reserves and $50,000 from the deed transfer tax - will fund the well-respected Youth Free Ice Time Project and efforts by the town to deal with poverty.

Tax Reduction Policy amendment

Council approved an amendment to its Tax Reduction Policy that ensures homeowners meeting the low-income threshold who are in arrears who have paid their tax payment arrangement for at least 12 consecutive months qualify for the $450 tax reduction.

Community Support Grants

Community support grants totaling slightly more than $83,500 were approved by council. Those receiving grants are:

Amherst Little League Baseball Assoc.                                  $ 1,500

Amherst Little League T-Ball Baseball                                          500

Autumn House                                                                          10,000

Cumberland Early Intervention Program                                      500

Food Assistance Network                                                           2,000

Cumberland County Museum                                                    4,000

Seniors Safety Program                                                             6,500

Sexual Health Centre for Cumberland                                          500

Amherst Artisan Gallery                                                                400

Cumberland Health Care Auxiliary                                                500

Bordertown Biker Bash Committee                                            2,500

Canadian Cancer Society - Relay for Life                                  1,800

Cumberland County Museum                                                     4,500

Fibre Arts Festival Society                                                          2,500

LA Animal Shelter                                                                          360

Amherst Fire Fighters Association                                             5,000

Amherst Spartans U-18 Girls Team                                              250

Amherst Sport & Social League                                                    500

Cumberland Y Service Club                                                       2,000

Knights of Columbus                                                                     300

Phoenix Cheer & Tumbling Club                                                   500

Showcase Productions                                                               1,000

NS Health Authority Community Rehab                                     1,500

Amherst Legion Branch 10                                                         2,000

Nova Scotia Community College                                             20,000

Amherst Community Christmas Dinner                                      1,500

Pay It forward Pantry                                                                  1,000

Maggie's Place                                                                         10,000

Total                                                                                       $83,610


Letters to these organizations outlining the amounts granted and the conditions, if any, will be sent out later this week.