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City applies for $332,070 grant
Ben Newman
Ben Newman has ascended from vice mayor to become McMinnville mayor.

The city of McMinnville is applying for its portion of $1.26 million in state grants earmarked for Warren County governments. 

Gov. Bill Lee has set aside $200 million in next year’s budget to be allocated as one-time grants to city and county governments in Tennessee. The monies will be available after July 1, 2020, and distributed based on population. No county will receive less than $500,000 and no city or municipality will receive less than $30,000. 

For the city, the final total it can receive is $332,070. Warren County government is slated to receive the lion’s share: $817,000. 

Other figures include: Morrison $45,713, Centertown $35,539 and Viola $32,932.

“We have to apply for it,” said Mayor Ben Newman, during the last Board of Mayor and Aldermen meeting. “I assume we will receive every penny of it.”

There are restrictions on how the money can be used. Grants are one-time funding and are to be used on one-time expenses. Funds may not be used to support recurring expenditures such as salaries, debt issuance, or existing programming and services. 

Funds can be used on IT hardware or capital maintenance projects like infrastructure.

“We have a number of places that we can spend this money,” said city administrator Nolan Ming. “We have three different projects that would easily take up that money.”

Alderman Everett Brock suggested the funds could be used on paving the parking lot at the Civic Center once that project is complete “The part where all the construction stuff is right now,” said Brock.

“We didn’t include that in the project?” asked Newman.

Brock replied, “We did, but then we took it out. We don’t know what it will cost. We knew what it would cost back then, but now petroleum is a third the price of what it was.”

A resolution to apply to the Governor’s Local Government Support Grant in the amount of $332,070 was unanimously approved.