American Rescue Plan funding available for Schuyler County business to renovate buildings

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SCHUYLER COUNTY, N.Y. (WETM) – The Schuyler County Legislature has approved a plan that will allocate $350,000 to downtown village businesses for facade and exterior building improvements.

The county will match 50 percent of the cost for improvements, between $5,000 to $25,000, for those eligible. Projects that would ordinarily cost a business $50,000 would be cut in half with the county footing $25,000 of the bill.

If eligible projects cost more than $50,000 the county would still cover the $25,000 and the business would be responsible for the remaining costs.

Schuyler County Administrator Fonda Chronis says the goal is to help beautify and improve the appearance of the downtown areas.

“Hoping that with the county’s help folks can invest in that and have a great first impression when people go down our main streets and to our villages.”

Eligible businesses must be located in the targeted area which includes the following:

a. Village of Burdett: NYS Route 79 from the southern village boundary to the eastern village
b. Village of Montour Falls: West Main Street, and Rt 14 [Catharine St] between Marina Drive
and College Ave.
c. Village of Odessa: NYS Route 224 [Main Street] between College Ave and the Railroad
d. Village of Watkins Glen: NYS Route 14 [Franklin Street] from Fairgrounds Lane to 2nd Street.
and NYS Route 414 [4th Street] between Franklin Street and Decatur Street.

Property must be an existing commercial or mixed-use building. Single Family Homes are not

Eligible properties must be covered by liability and hazard insurance. A property’s hazard insurance must be sufficient to cover any outstanding loans on the property and the total amount of grant funds provided.

Additional eligibility details can be read below:

Applicants will need to provide documents such as concept drawings, multiple project estimates, photos, and an application. Chronis says the county plans to have applications available on the county website later this week.

Once available, applications can be submitted to or delivered in-person/mailed to Schuyler County Partnership for Economic Development at 910 S. Decatur Street in Watkins Glen.

Chronis says at the end of January the county’s Council of Governments will meet and discuss the funding and plans. The county’s goal is to get all $350,000 allocated to the project out into the community.

“We’ll see what the initial batch brings in then we’ll go from there,” said Chronis when asked if the program could be expanded.

Schuyler County received $3.45 million from the American Rescue Plan signed by President Biden last year.

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