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After months of consideration, debate and hope, a final word has been rendered on the Owenton City Council’s grant request for West Perry Street renovation.
Mayor David “Milkweed” Wotier received a letter from the Department of Local Government that stated the renovation project will not be funded.
The process began last August when Wotier announced that the City of Owenton would be applying for grant funds to spruce up one of Owenton’s streets. East and West Perry were the main targets for the program.
West Perry Street was chosen in October and the city applied for a $1 million grant to rehabilitate a section of the street.
Brian Kirby, president of Community and Economic Develop-ment Associates, was overseeing the project.
Under the guidelines of the project, homes on West Perry could have been demolished if they were not structurally sound. The owners would have received market value for their properties, and renters in a home selected for demolition would have been relocated.
“I’m a little confused really,” Wotier said. “We had met with the Department of Local Government not too long ago and everything sounded very promising. I don’t know if more requests were put in but even Brian (Kirby) was very optimistic about it.”
Wotier said that East Perry needed more help than West Perry.
“I think if you look at some of the houses you’ll see that East Perry needed it worse,” Wotier said. “But because West Perry is a through-street and it gets more traffic, more people see what an eyesore parts of the street are.”
“I’m disappointed that it’s not happening,” Wotier said. “But we may be able to explore some other options in the future. It wouldn’t be the same set-up though; it wouldn’t be dictated by the government and not as mandatory.”
If the city council takes future action in renovation, it will not be for a specific street, Wotier said.
In other city council news, the city council is in the process of establishing a five-member enforcement board for the newly updated nuisance ordinance. Ashley Young, Misty Bourne and Dusty Hensley have all agreed to serve on the board. Wotier is waiting to hear from two more possible members.