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Work on Sidewalk and Streetscape Program improvements begins next month


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PARMA, Ohio - The City’s Department of Community Services and Economic Development will spend $230,000 on its 2017 Sidewalk and Streetscape programs; the money for these improvements comes from federally funded Community Development Block Grants.

The purpose of the Sidewalks Program is to improve the public right-of-way in residential areas and to allow for better accessibility and mobility. The grant amount for this program is $130,000. Twenty-eight streets have been identified for improvements in curbs, aprons and sidewalks. Six wheelchair ramps are part of this project.

Similarly, the Streetscape Program, which has a $100,000 budget, improves public right-of-way and aesthetics of retail districts. Ten sites have been identified for improvements.

“We are using these important federal dollars to invest in our community by supporting infrastructure improvements that will help our businesses and residents,” Mayor Tim DeGeeter said.

Work on the various improvements around Parma will begin in mid-September and is expected to be completed by November 1.

Also, on Monday, Aug. 14, the office of Economic Development & Community Services will begin taking calls for September appointments for the issuance of furnace vouchers for senior citizens.

Each voucher is worth $80 towards the cost of inspecting, cleaning and servicing the furnace. The vouchers are paid for by Community Development Block Grant funding, and 125 vouchers are available.

“We’re very pleased to be able to offer this program again,” Mayor DeGeeter said. “In the past, this program has saved lives from potential carbon monoxide poisoning. We’re grateful that this is another way we can assist our senior population.”

There are eligibility requirements for receiving a furnace voucher: the home must be owner-occupied, and every occupant of the home must be over age 65. Adult children or spouses under 65 qualify if they have been documented as disabled. Also, property taxes must be current or if not, on a payment plan with Cuyahoga County.

Applicants can call (216) 661-7372 on and after August 14th to make a September appointment at the Community Services office at 5517 State Road.  To the appointment, applicants should bring a photo ID for every occupant of the home, copies of two recent utility bills and a copy of the last property tax bill for the home. A short application can be filled out at the Community Services office.

After a brief review process, granted vouchers must be used by October 30, 2017.

The office of Community Services will make free copies for applicants. Staff members from this office also do home visits and will shuttle and/or copy documents for shut-ins or handicapped applicants.

The voucher must be used for a "furnace clean and check" from a licensed and registered HVAC contractor of the homeowner’s choice. A list of all registered HVAC Contractors in Parma is available from the Community Services office.