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County to share in river cleanup costs


County commissioners agreed Monday morning to participate in a cleanup project on the Pigeon River. John Senecal presented an opportunity for the county to receive a $50,000 LARE (Lake and River Enhancement) program grant.

The river preservation grant will be used to remove 32 documented log jams in the river from the east county line to CR 900E. The project will enhance river recreational activities and provide for a safer environment.

Cost share will be $2,500 for the county. The LaGrange County Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) will be the grant administrator and provide an additional $2,500. The LARE grant will be for $40,000 and local volunteers will provide $5,000 of “in-kind” services.

SWCD Chairman Richard Yoder told commissioners that the SWCD looks at this as a project which will help with drainage in the area.

“We market quality of life in LaGrange County and anything that enhances recreation in our area is a big plus,” EDC Director Keith Gillenwater said.

Grant applications will be considered after Jan. 15, 2013, and will be awarded March 15, 2013.