Supervisors OK grant awards
Mike Ivers had a story for the Yuma County Board of Supervisors Tuesday morning.
Among the many programs Ivers oversees as executive director of the Yuma Community Food Bank is the Backpack for Kids program, which sends low-income children home with knapsacks full of food to get them through the weekend when they don't have the school cafeteria to keep them fed. It's a program funded with grants, like the Community Development Block Grants authorized by the county supervisors.
Ivers told the supervisors he was speaking with the principal of a school that participates in the program, which serves about 750 students a week, and the principal recalled a conversation he had with a second-grader who he volunteered to pick up after the little boy missed the bus.
The principal pulled up to a motel room.
“‘I said to him, Is this where you live?' and he said, ‘We didn't till today. We just got evicted. There are six in my family.' And on the way back to school, he said, ‘That's where we're gonna live' and pointed to an abandoned mobile home,” said Ivers, who appeared with members of his staff to thank the county for supporting the program.
“The need is stronger than ever. This backpack program has made a huge difference in kids lives.”
The supervisors authorized a grant of about $53,000 for the backpack program on Tuesday. They also authorized $75,000 for Campesinos Sin Frontera's Owner-Occupied Housing Rehabilitation Program and $225,000 for the Owner Occupied Housing Rehabilitation Home Modification Program with Servicing Maximizing Living Empowerment (SMILE).
In other action, the supervisors approved:
• Intergovernmental agreements for the County 14th Street Asphaltic Overlay Project from Avenue A to Avenue 3E. The county will partner with the city of Yuma, designating Yuma County as lead agency for developing the project and jointly sharing costs exceeding allocated federal assistance; and with the Arizona Department of Transportation, providing for the development and review of improvement plans, specifications, environmental and right of way in accordance with ADOT and all federal aid requirements.
• Sending a letter of appreciation on behalf of Yuma County to U.S. Sen. John McCain regarding the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter training program at Marine Corps Air Station Yuma.
The March 4 board meeting has been canceled. Its next meeting will be on March 18.
Hillary Davis can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 539-6857. Find her on Facebook at Facebook.com/YSHillaryDavis or on Twitter at @YSHillaryDavis.