An Outpouring Of Opportunities

In addition to staff time, a park district may have to pay for a federal audit for those who manage more than $1 million in federal grants in a single year. All or part of the expected cost of the audit can be incorporated into the grant budget. Other expected costs are listed in the paragraph above.

Some HMGP grants do not require any match, but most require a 25-percent match, which may be one of the biggest challenges. The state may be able to provide half of the required funds. Counties, conservancy districts, municipalities, or local foundations are other possible sources for matching funds, if a park district cannot provide the match in cash or force-account labor.

For more information, visit or your state’s emergency-management agency website.

Robert A. Fonte, Director, Stark County Park District since 1994, and Chair of the Advocacy Committee of the Ohio Parks & Recreation Assn., was a recent winner of a “Trail Advocacy Award for Ohio” from American Trails. He can be reached at



Three homes, including this one, were torn down in Waynesburg, Ohio, to expand the SandyCreek’s flood plain. The $363,000 project was overseen by the Stark County Park District.  (Photo provided by Stark Parks)

When sandbags couldn’t hold back flood waters, the Pathway Caring for Children foster-care agency turned to the Stark County Park District to administer a $1.6 million federal hazard mitigation grant to demolish its building and provide funds for relocation. In return, the park district received 1.87 acres of land for a future park or recreational trail.

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