WIUM Tristates Public Radio

Lee County Creates Special Fund

May 1, 2012

Lee County has started collecting money to cover its share of a potential state grant for a proposed sports complex in Fort Madison.

That is possible because the Board of Supervisors has approved the creation of a Community Development Fund.

The first donations came in shortly after the official vote.  Supervisors Rick Larkin ($1,000) and Larry Kruse ($500) pulled out their wallets and wrote their checks to back up their verbal pledges from last week.

Chairperson Janet Fife-LaFrenz says the money donated by residents for a specific project will be used as the county’s match for various grants.

The fund was created specifically for Fort Madison’s proposed sports complex, which would include three football/soccer fields and three baseball/softball diamonds.  It can be used to hold matching funds for other projects, except for those that receive required county funding.

Fife-LaFrenz says that includes the local public libraries and the Lee County Fair Board.

Lee County has been told it must come up with $25,000 for the sports complex to receive any assistance from the Vision Iowa Board.  There are no guarantees, though, that the panel will consider the donated money to be a firm commitment from the county.

The supervisors are still working on the language for a letter of support to the Vision Iowa Board.

The sports complex committee says it will review the language of the Community Development Fund to decide how it should proceed.  There are potential tax benefits for a contribution to Lee County.