CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- A Logan County reader called to say the local paper had recently carried separate photos of giant check presentations with different groups of local legislators, but both to the Buffalo Creek Watershed Association.
I told him that sounded like Community Participation Partnership Grants. CPPs became the preferred way for legislators to fund home-district projects following the demise of the infamous Budget Digest in 2006.
As the reader described, its not unusual for delegates in multi-member districts to obtain multiple small grants for the same project, or to work with senators to turn several small grants into a nice little funding source.
(Unlike the Budget Digest, the CPPs come with a little hitch: the governor's office has to sign off on them.)
From last Sept. 1 to this Aug. 1, 637 CPP grants have been approved, totaling $3,425,754 -- or an average of $5,378 per grant.
Denominations range from $1,000 (multiple times) to $50,000 (for Beckley Little League field improvements, requested by Sen. Mike Green, D-Raleigh. Delegates Moye, O'Neal, Snuffer, Mahan and Sumner got an additional $9,000 for facility and upgrades for Beckley to host the state Little League tournament.)
Grants to Little Leagues, or for improvements to parks or athletic fields were popular, accounting for 67 appropriations.
Larger grants in that category included $15,000 for improvements at Glendale Park in Elkins (Sen. Barnes), a total of $15,000 for Vinson Little League field improvements (Sens. Jenkins and Plymale), a total of $18,500 for upgrades and improvements to Kenova Dreamland Park (Sens. Jenkins, Plymale, Delegate Perdue), $33,500 for Martinsburg football field and concession stand improvements (Sen. Snyder), $10,000 for Nitro Little League improvements (Delegates Lane, Walters), $40,000 for Pleasants County pool repairs (Sens. Boley and Nohe), and a total of $15,000 for installing lights at Terra Alta Youth League fields (Sen. Sypolt, Delegate Shaver).
(By the way, I did note a $5,000 grant for the Buffalo Creek Watershed, requested by Delegate Rupert Phillips Jr., D-Logan ...)
Still haven't had any luck reaching Agnes Jane Greer Corp. president Lauren Kelley Driscoll of Stamford, Conn., regarding her plans for AJG's pending acquisition of WCLG AM-FM in Morgantown.
Interestingly, considering how quickly West Virginia Radio Corp. executives jumped on the Daily Mail to demand clarifications for allegedly misinterpreting the value of the company's bid for West Virginia University's third tier rights, I have yet to receive a single phone call, email or letter disputing anything I've written concerning the assertion that AJG is a front company for West Virginia Radio to allow it to evade FCC limits on the number of radio stations WVRC may legally own in the Morgantown-Clarksburg market.
(Assuming AJG is a front, WVRC already is over the limit, with one AM and six FMs, even without the WCLG acquisition.)
I believe the FCC's deadline to file a petition to deny or to submit informal objections regarding the transfer of ownership comes up on Wednesday.