Girard will seek EPA funding to clean up Leatherworks site


City officials plans to apply for a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency grant to clean up hazardous substances from the former Ohio Leatherworks property, a brownfield site.

Lauren Johnson, business development manager from the Youngstown Warren Regional Chamber, said the city can apply for a maximum of $500,000 to clean the brownfield at a 20 percent local share.

City council approved a first reading to allow the mayor to apply for the federal grants at a cost not to exceed $100,000 for the city match.

The deadline for the grant application is Jan. 31, 2019. The Trumbull County Planning Commission is also working with the city and the regional chamber on the grant application process.

“This would be a huge win for Girard,” Johnson said.

Mayor James Melfi said he would like to see the grant application moved froward, so the city can get a jump on the recreational projects it has planned, such as bike trails.

Lily Martuccio, economic development chairwoman, agreed, saying:  “What a great legacy we could leave our citizens down the road, as part of this Lake to River bike trail.”

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