Southeastern PA

Quakertown receives grant for downtown revitalization improvements

QUAKERTOWN, Pa. - The borough of Quakertown received a much-needed boost from the state in order to continue with its efforts of downtown revitalization.

Borough leaders and representatives from the Quakertown Alive!, a local community development organization, were honored at the start of Wednesday council meeting with the official ribbon cutting ceremony and presentation of certificate of recognition from Pa. Sen. Bob Mensch, (R) Pennsylvania's 24th District (Berks, Bucks and Montgomery counties).

Mensch did not attend the ceremony.

The borough recently received $50,000 in grant money from the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development.

Officials said they plan to award the money to local businesses, primarily in the downtown region, to help with facade improvements and with efforts to attract more customers into the downtown to shop and eat.

Councilwoman Jann Paulovitz said that last year the borough had received $50,000 in grants and the subsequent revenue of $172,000 came back into the community.

"It works well," Paulovitz said.

She said so far the borough has received 24 applications from local business owners, seeking financial awards for their improvement projects.

Quakertown Alive! is spearheading several revitalization projects and was responsible for applying for the state grant. 

The volunteer-driven organization hosts various events throughout the community and works with businesses to drive tourism into the downtown district. It's a local offshoot of the nationally accredited Main Street America program.

In other business, borough officials unanimously approved the sale of the remaining 12 police portable radios that no longer work following the mandated countywide upgrade of emergency communication apparatus early this year.

"We thought we had to throw them away because they were outdated technology but we found that a vendor is actually interested in using them for parts," Councilman Donald Rosenberger said.

Rosenberger said a New York-based vendor All Season Distribution offered to pay $590 for the radios and use them for parts.

A set of 19 new portable police radios was recently purchased to replace the outdated equipment at a rough cost of $60,000.

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