By ERIC X. VICCARO
The Ste. Genevieve Parks and Recreation board convened in a regular meeting on Monday, Jan. 24.
The most pressing topic was continued discussions on how to properly fund the Master Plan for Pere Marquette Park.
Seven members of the board were present for the meeting: Lauren Smothers (who directed the session), Barbara Basler-Peterson, Mark Buchheit, Samer Zoughaib, Geoffrey Duvall, John Karel and Travis Henderson.
During the discussions, Karel asked about whether any state monies could be applied for to kick start fundraising efforts.
City Administrator Happy Welch noted he’s monitoring the situation.
“We will keep following it,” Welch said.
What’s more, the administrator noted the federal government may soon be loosening regulations for American Rescue Plan Act funding — which could help the city fund work on local parks.
Welch noted the city will be reapplying for a Recreational Trail Program Grant through the Missouri Department of Natural Resources.
The grant was for more the $70,000, and would help pay for a portion of a new walking trail at Marquette Park.
In Missouri, RTP grants are open to local and state governments, school districts and nonprofit organizations, as explained on the Missouri State Parks’ website.
Missouri receives between $1 and $1.5 million per fiscal year, with the maximum amount awarded for a single project at $250,000. Sponsors must have made a minimum 20 percent match. Projects must be in locations considered “open to the public.”