CRESTVIEW — The Main Street Crestview Association has received unanimous approval for three project requests, but funding for a full-time program manager has been deferred.
Association President Ellis Conner presented the non-profit organization's annual budget request to the CRA board, which City Council members comprise, Aug. 12.
Among its approved requests, Main Street asked the Community Redevelopment Agency to renew its $50,000 annual funding for the downtown Façade Improvement Grant program. Although it’s not a Main Street program, the association provides grant recommendations to the CRA. Business grant recipients receive up to half the cost of façade improvements, up to $10,000.
Conner also presented Main Street's request for $10,000 per year over the next three years to fund Crestview's 2016 Centennial Celebration events.
A further $15,000 was requested to maintain existing streetscape improvements. Some of the $3 million project components, notably some dying landscaping, need upkeep, Conner said.
No manager funding
The board agreed to consider the association's request for $38,000 to hire a full-time program manager after the city's budget process is complete.
The last program manager lost his job when funding for the position approved in November 2010 was abruptly denied in January 2011.
CRA board member Tom Gordon suggested hiring a contract program manager so the CRA would not have to fund an estimated $18,000 in city employee benefits.
Gordon also asked whether Main Street could match CRA funds toward the position. Noting its resources are limited, Conner said the program could possibly contribute up to $5,000.
The Main Street program must have a full-time manager to retain accreditation with the Main Street Florida program, which has recognized it with several awards.
The CRA is not funded with Crestview taxpayer money. It is supported through an Okaloosa County sales tax-increment process.
Contact News Bulletin Staff Writer Brian Hughes at 850-682-6524 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @cnbBrian.