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Keep Utopia Beautiful receives project grant

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The Lower Colorado River Authority (LCRA) and Bandera Electric Cooperative (BEC) recently awarded $9,665 to the nonprofit Keep Utopia Beautiful.

According to a press release, the grant will be used for the construction of a 27,000-cubic-foot metal storage building that will allow for expansion of recycling efforts in Uvalde County.

The grant arrives as part of 35 other grants for community projects totaling $815,000.

Other projects include new firetrucks in Lee and Tom Green counties, a new trailhead and outdoor classroom in Early, renovations to a decades-old kitchenette at the Columbus public library and a new splash pad at Lavaca Swimming Pool in Hallettsville.

LCRA General Manager Phil Wilson said the grants help support important community projects that otherwise may not be funded.

“These projects contribute to the health, safety and development of local communities,” Wilson said. “Whether it’s providing new rescue equipment for first responders or replacing an outdated playscape at a community park, these projects help improve lives and support communities across the LCRA service territory.’’

Fifteen projects will support first responders by providing personal protective equipment, emergency vehicles and additional critical resources such as rescue tools and transport ventilators.

“First responders need protective gear, reliable equipment and fully functional vehicles ready to go at a moment’s notice, and LCRA is proud to assist,” Wilson said. “These grants will help first responders act quickly and operate safely as they work to protect their communities.”

To date, LCRA has awarded 1,888 community grants totaling more than $48.7 million. When combined with almost $230 million in community-raised matching funds, the program has invested more than $278 million in local communities.

Similar grants are awarded twice a year for capital projects for volunteer fire departments, emergency responders, cities and counties, schools, libraries, civic groups, museums, and other tax-exempt non-profit organizations.

Applications for the next round of grants will be available at on July 1 and are due by midnight on July 31.