DORA - The Dora City Council on Thursday approved offering $112,460 in matching money for the recreational trails grant project which the city is applying for.
The grant is intended to light the city's walking trail with LED lights. Stephens said last month a grant was applied for in the program in December 2018 but the city didn't receive it. The city did not have the money at the time to do work on the full length of the trail, Stephens said, only asking the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs (ADECA) to work from Highway 78 to the trail going up the hill to the park. He is now suggesting the city apply for the LED lights for the entire 2.5-mile length of the walking trail, with the potential to get up to $400,000.
However, he is not optimistic for the chances of getting the grant.
"It is a stretch but I am pulling every string I can," Stephens said Thursday night, saying he has contacted U.S. Rep. Robert Aderholt and state Senate Pro Tem Greg Reed, R-Jasper. He said he is trying to get in touch with state Rep. Connie Rowe, R-Jasper.
He said last month it is an matching grant where the city puts up 20 percent, but he would be willing to put up more than 20 percent if necessary.
Letters of support from throughout the community would be appreciated, he said, noting Randy and Linda Spears are heading up that effort. "Be specific as to how the lights will enhance the trail," Stephens said, suggesting topics of safety, being allowed to walk at night when it is hot in the summer and helps to avoid snakes and other animals.
Councilman Randy Spears was absent from the meeting.
"I think it is a worthy project. If the state is going to fund things, I think this is a worthy project. That walking trail is used a lot, and this would enhance the use of it by lighting it. Hopefully, it will be funded," he said.