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Michael J. Sykes: 'If you are involved in a local not-for-profit ... I encourage you to consider applying for this grant.'

PMG PHOTO: COURTNEY VAUGHN - Michael J. SykesOne of our six core values at Columbia River PUD is commitment to community. We operate in a manner that benefits the community we serve while minimizing costs to our customers.

One approach we take to supporting our community is our Community Economic Development Grant Program. This program is available to local not-for-profit entities that promote economic development and enhance livability in our community.

This year we are offering two rounds of funding. The first round of grant funding took place in March. The deadline to apply for the second round of funding is Aug. 31. Applications that meet our program requirements will be forwarded to our Board of Directors for review at their September meeting.

In March, we awarded four grants. They went to:

• Columbia County Habitat for Humanity for its new Home Ownership Resource Center.

• The City of Scappoose for its Adventure Festival.

• Riverside Community Outreach for renovation of its new building in St. Helens.

• The Scappoose Public Library to expand its Movies in the Park program.

Individual grants are limited to $5,000 and may not exceed one-half of the total project costs that are actually or reasonably incurred. We have room in our budget to award six full grants in September.

Our goal with these grants is to work with our local partners to help create a more thriving, vibrant community. We hope these grants can support and strengthen our local organizations and ultimately enhance the quality of life in our community.

If you are involved in a local not-for-profit organization or know someone who is, I encourage you to consider applying for this grant. The full details and the application materials are available on our website at

Michael J. Sykes is general manager of the Columbia River People's Utility District.

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