Suffolk County to give $500G in grants to improve L.I. downtowns


A total of $500,000 is up for grabs for Long Island villages and hamlets aiming to revitalize its downtown.

On Friday, Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone announced applications are open for the 2020 Suffolk County Downtown Revitalization Grants Program.

According to the grant’s outlines, the money will be awarded to local governments looking to partially fund “capital projects located in, or adjacent to, downtown areas on municipally-owned property. “

Think projects such as upgrading public parking facilities, curb and sidewalk installation/improvements, renovating structures, and more.

The funding request must be a minimum $10,000 and the project’s lifespan must be at least 15 years.

“Our downtowns are essential to keeping our region competitive and attracting the high skill, high knowledge workers we need to grow our local economy,” said Bellone. “As we move full steam ahead with our economic development agenda, we will continue to make quality investments to create the robust, vibrant downtowns that make Suffolk County the ideal place to work, live and raise a family.”

According to a release by the County, grand applicants must be one of the following entities: business improvement districts, chambers of commerce, civic associations, historical societies, beautification societies, and local development corporations are eligible applicants.

“Towns or villages who partner with a community organization are required to pass resolutions supporting the project on which the two entities partner,” reads a statement from Bellone’s office. “Projects must be capital in nature and have a significant and sustainable impact that enhances economic activity.”

Since 1997, Suffolk County has awarded $12 million through this initiative. Last year, 11 projects were funded by the Downtown Revitalization grant.

The application and guidelines can be found on the Suffolk County Downtown Revitalization website starting Feb. 18. Applications are due by 4:30 p.m. on May 22.

After submissions are in, the Suffolk County Downtown Revitalization Citizens Advisory Panel, under a competitive application process, will choose the winner(s) of the award.

There will also be an application training session at the H. Lee Dennison Building Media Room in Hauppauge on Feb. 24 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.