YOUNGSTOWN Nonprofit entities are awarded grants

The money comes from fees paid by trash haulers for dumping debris in landfills.
YOUNGSTOWN -- Fifteen government, school and other nonprofit groups in Mahoning County will receive grants to help pay for projects -- from playground equipment to trash cans.
A total of $200,000 in competitive grants was awarded this week by the county's recycling division. The money is available to nonprofit organizations, government agencies and schools for projects using recycled materials.
The competitive funding program started in 1999.
"This program is getting more and more popular every year," said Commissioner Ed Reese, who serves on the recycling division's policy committee.
Source of money: The money comes from revenue the recycling division generates through fees paid by trash haulers for dumping debris at landfills in the county, said Timothy Berlekamp, executive director.
"It continually goes out to benefit all of Mahoning County," Berlekamp said.
He said applicants are required to put up 20 percent of their project cost with either cash or in-kind services.
This year, the agency received funding requests totaling more than $333,000, but had only $200,000 to distribute, Reese said. Requests ranged from $692 for recycled trash containers in Beaver Township to $83,433 from Poland's North Elementary School for playground improvements and equipment.
Only $11,400 was awarded toward elementary school projects. The largest grant was $55,956 to Campbell, which will use it for new playground equipment.
"It was an interesting round with a lot of diversity in the applications," Berlekamp said.

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