$60K fund to support neighborhood projects

Neighborhood banners, like this one in Austinburg, are among the types of projects eligible for funding under a Covington grant program about to be unveiled. 

New grant program for beautification initiatives available soon

COVINGTON, Ky. - Neighborhood-oriented groups in Covington who want to improve the look of their surroundings will soon have additional and tangible help - grants of $250 to $5,000 from the City.
What sorts of projects will be eligible?
Examples include things like banners and signs, planters, or clean-up and beautification initiatives and events.
The $60,000 Neighborhood Grant Program is on the Covington City Commission’s consent agenda for Tuesday night. Assuming approval, the City will then post links on its website, HERE, that provide guidelines, a blank application, and a scoring sheet that will show how awardees will be chosen.
Neighborhood Services Director Ken Smith said he expected “no shortage of wonderful ideas” to be submitted.
“The goal is to improve the physical appearance of our great neighborhoods and enhance the sense of social cohesion through beautification projects, blight removal, special events, and/or activities,” Smith said. “I’m excited for this opportunity to work with community groups to make this happen.”
Smith said the City is not looking for complex projects that take a long time to carry out.
“We will be looking for proposals that can be accomplished quickly without a lot of administration,” Smith said. “Ideas that require capacity building or have a long timeframe for implementation would not be a good fit.”
An information meeting will be held 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. April 22 at City Hall to review the guidelines and answer questions ahead of the May 13 deadline for the first round of funding.
“While the City has to have some restrictions on the use of public dollars, we want to be as flexible as possible in making sure that the application process is quick and simple,” Smith said.
Details about the program: 
  • Two rounds of funding, in the Spring and Fall.
  • Two categories: Small grants will be $250 to $1,500; large will be $1,501 to $5,000.
  • Applicants must be an existing neighborhood association or a group that is organizing to become one. Not eligible are individuals, businesses, social service agencies, fraternal and religious organizations, schools, and public agencies, although these groups can collaborate with neighborhood groups.
  • Scoring by a committee will focus on factors like feasibility, impact, need, support, sustainability, and leveraged investment.
  • Neighborhoods are restricted to one large or two small grants per year.