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Ebensburg won’t back nonprofit’s grant pitch


EBENSBURG – An Ebensburg-area environmental organization on Monday was denied a grant request due to its current lease agreement.

Nathan’s Divide, which is attempting to create an outdoor education center at an Ebensburg Municipal Authorityowned reservoir north of the borough in Cambria Township, previously approached Ebensburg Borough for their support of a $1.8 million grant application, for which the nonprofit organization would need the municipality to apply.

Founder Dave Lester explained to the authority members that the money would go towards roadways throughout the area. He explained that the grant is 100% reimbursable, but that the project would need to be paid for first.

Authority members questioned money coming from the municipality directly. When asked, Lester was unable to provide specifics of the payment structure or the cost breakdown.

In an Ebensburg Borough Council meeting immediately following the municipal authority’s meeting, Borough Manager Kelly Cook recommended to the council that the resolution to proceed with the grant application not be approved.

“The agreement between the municipal authority and Nathan’s Divide does not match what they’re asking for, so I cannot recommend to the council that you pass it,” she said.

Cook explained that “all of the vehicles” are not allowed in the lease agreement.

When asked what the concern was by Lester, she added that the authority did not want to amend the lease agreement at this time and that the organization could approach the authority with an amended lease agreement.

Katie Smolen is a reporter with The Tribune-Democrat.

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