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Towns get state grants to fund parks

Walkersville gives up funding so others may benefit

Ingrid Mezo

(6/1) Emmitsburg, Thurmont and Woodsboro all received the full amount of Program Open Space grant money they requested for fiscal 2007 from the state.

The Town of Walkersville offered to give up its request for $67,500 in fiscal 2007, since it had received the lion’s share of available grant money in fiscal 2006, Burgess Ralph Whitmore said.

The grant money is made available to municipalities in the State of Maryland annually, and Frederick County town officials meet to discuss how to divvy up the available money. This year’s meeting was on May 25.

‘‘We got everything we asked for," said Commissioner Glenn Muth of Thurmont.

Thurmont received a total of $212,756 from the state, which the town will use to fund playground equipment and other repairs in Thurmont Community Park, East End Park, Eyler Road Park, Ice Plant Park and Woodland Park, and to pay for an extended lot on Carroll Street.

Muth said he expected the town would make the repairs in the next two years.

‘‘The state funds 75 percent of the money and we have to fund the other 25 percent," he said.

Emmitsburg received a total of $37,500 to build walking paths in Emmitsburg Community Park. Several town residents have come forward during town meetings to request the paths.

Woodsboro received $43,410 to make improvements at Woodsboro Community Park. Its request shows it intends to use the money to resurface two tennis courts and a basketball court, replace mulch on a handicapped-accessible playground, replace two merry-go-rounds, install concrete pads under bleachers, resurface park paths, make repairs at pavilions and construct a concession stand there.

‘‘We will apply for [the improvements] now," Burgess Donal Trimmer said. Trimmer said he expected the repairs at Woodsboro Community Park to be completed by next summer.

As for Walkersville, Whitmore said the town had received more than $100,000 for Heritage Farm Park last year. ‘‘It was only fair for us to back out this year," he said.

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