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Grant money would help city businesses refurbish buildings




Business owners in Whitesburg could soon receive help with obtaining money to refurbish their storefronts if two grants being sought by the City of Whitesburg come through.

Mayor James Wiley Craft told the Whitesburg City Council last week that Letcher County writer Sam Adams has submitted requests for two grants through the Southern & Eastern Kentucky Tourism Development Association to promote historic restoration in the city.

Craft said if the grants are awarded they will be administered through the city. One will be available to all Whitesburg business owners through a $30,000 revolving loan fund for downtown business revitalization. The city will make loans up to $3,000 available at the low end of the prevailing interest structure. As the loans are paid off into the revolving fund a new cycle will start up each year. At the end of the grant period, the city will use the money to pay for one of two historical buildings in town.

The other grant is for $7,500 for maps and brochures for the downtown historical district, including a walking tour that leads to the Highlands Trail on Town Hill. The council voted unanimously to approve the city’s participation in both grants.

Mayor Craft said he was pleased with the possibility of downtown revitalization to go along with other projects already underway, including the bids for construction for the pedestrian bridge which were approved in the regular February meeting. Craft said the contracts for construction were signed with Bush and Burchett Construction of Prestonsburg. He said he expects the bridge to be finished around the first week of July.

Craft invited anyone interested in the bridge to come to Whitesburg after the middle of March to see the project as it takes shape.


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