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Friday, Sep. 19, 2014

Parade of non-profits present pleas

Friday, May 4, 2012

A number of non-profit and social service organizations came before Shelbyville's council Thursday evening, with some asking for twice the amount of funding received last year.

The meeting was the first in a series planned for the next two months dealing with Shelbyville's fiscal 2012-2013 budget.

Groups were asked to provide the city with an annual report on their business affairs, such as an audit, or for smaller organizations, a statement of their income and expenses, as well as a proposed budget for the upcoming year.

A total of 23 groups addressed the council during the two-hour study session. Requests from the various non-profit charitable and community organizations totaled $154,829, with groups asking for $37,500 more this year.

Arts Council

The Bedford County Arts Council requested $32,500 from the city -- almost twice the amount received last year.

Director Janice Cole stated the request for the extra funding was due to major updates and repairs to three new central heating and cooling units at an estimated cost of $15,000 each.

She also stated that while event attendance at The Fly Arts Center has increased, the slumping economy has taken a toll on both private and public donations, and they needed the city's help.

City manager Jay Johnson suggested that the council look at it as two separate requests since this was more of a capital outlay situation with the heating and cooling units.

CFD, CASA

The Center for Family Development, a child abuse prevention agency, requested $5,000 -- twice the amount requested last year.

CASA (Court Approved Special Advocate program) had previously worked under the umbrella of the Center and became independent in 2010. However, last year the city's $5,000 donation went entirely to CASA while the Center received no funds.

CASA also requested $5,000 from the city, stating that there are about 60 children in foster care who have been abused or neglected in Shelbyville. The request makes up about seven percent of their total budget.

Also asking for twice last year's donation was the Caregiver Relief Program of Bedford County, who requested $3,000. Program director Joyce Adams said that funding was greatly needed due to the decrease in United Way giving.

Help agencies

Haven of Hope, an emergency shelter for victims of domestic violence asked for $2,500. During the past two years, the city had not provided a donation to the organization.

C.R.O.S.S. (Community Religious Outreach Social Service, which provides shelter and food to Bedford County's homeless, requested $3,500 - $2,000 more than the previous year.

President Dr. Carl Bailey said the organization had experienced a dramatic shortfall in resources in 2011, resulting in a reduction of their services.

Bailey said that they were only able to feed and shelter clients through individual donations from churches, citizens and local businesses.

The Vocational Rehabilitation Center asked for $25,000 from the city, withdrawing a previous request for an increase of $2,000 this year. The Center provides persons with disabilities with help on entering the workforce and is a state-affiliated program.

Learning groups

The Argie Cooper Library requested an additional $11,890 this year for a total of $142,390. The library is listed in the city's general government fund, separate from the non-profit organizations.

Coming before the council for the first time, the Boys and Girls Club of Bedford County requested $5,000 to help cover the cost of the "at-risk" youth that participate in their summer program.

They are also asking for assistance in sending the kids on a series of summer field trips such as the Cheekwood Botanical Gardens, Adventure Science Center, the Normandy Fish Hatchery, the Chattanooga Aquraium, Winky Groover's horse ranch and Henry Horton State Park.

Another newcomer is Bridge of Hope Ministries, which operates Fallout Teen Center at 620 Elm St. They are asking for $2,000 to assist with monthly expenses and to initiate a summer program to attract more interest from the county's teens.

Lucy Taylor, of Bedford Against Drug Community Collition, made a first-time request for $1,500 to help fight the various types of substance abuse.

More requests

Other organizations making requests this year were:

l Bedford County Rescue Unit, $2,500 -- $500 more than in 2011.

l Bedford County Soil and Water Conservation, $5,000.

l Gilliland Resource Center, $1,000.

l Tennessee Backroads, $3,629.

l Uptown Shelbyville/Main Street asked for $5,000 in funding, but Johnson said that the group must have a 501c3 tax designation.

l The Senior Citizens Center, $16,000.

l Skills Development Services, $8,000.

l The Child Development Center, $15,200.

l Community Clinic, $10,000.

l The Chamber of Commerce made their annual request for $5,000 for industrial development and promotion.

l South Central Human Resources, $3,254 -- $677 more than in 2011.