Hancock-area organizations get over $128K in gaming funds

by Geoff Fox

The Washington County Gaming Commission announced last Tuesday its gaming fund distribution to the Washington County Fire and Rescue Association was well as 84 local charitable organizations.

The Gaming Fund total of $2,044,999 for fiscal year 2019 ended on June 30 and represents an increase of $68,625 when compared to fiscal year 2018 revenues.

Organizations with Hancock ties received $128,200.

Boys and Girls Club of Washington County received $40,000; Big Brothers Big Sisters of Washington County received $28,200; Interfaith Service Coalition received $25,000; Washington County Commission on Aging received $24,000; YMCA received $5,000; Head Start of Washington County $2,500; C&O Canal Trust received $2,000; and Hancock Little League got $1,500.

State law requires funds be divided equally between the Washington County Fire and Rescue Association and local charities.

In January, the Washington County Fire and Rescue Association received $433,769 with an additional $588,703 to be distributed. That would bring the yearly total for Fire and Rescue to $1,022,499.

In May, the Gaming Commission received 100 separate applications from 84 charitable organizations requesting a total of $1,947,775.

After a one-day workshop in June and a public hearing in July, the Commission was able to either partially or fully fund 87 of the 100 requests.

Of those 100 applications, 16 were fully funded, 71 were partially funded, and 13 were denied funding.

Overall, there were only three organizations denied funding.

A total of $1,022,499 of the 2019 gaming funds was allocated to 81 of the 84 charitable organizations applying.

This year, an additional $8,141.50 was distributed to charitable organizations due to funds being returned from organizations unable to spend their prior year gaming award funds within the one-year grant period.

All gaming grant funds are required to be spent within one year of the award and any unspent funds are returned to the fund for reallocation.

Including those funds, a total of $1,030,641 was distributed to charitable organizations.

The largest award $160,000, which the Community Free Clinic received. R.E.A.C.H of Washington County was next receiving $60,000 followed by Brook Lane Health Services, Inc. receiving $55,000.

The breakdown of the program type and total awarded were $1,022,499 to Public Safety; adult services $314,525; health services $275,000; youth services $205,916; recreation $80,700; civic $80,000; cultural/arts $32,500; education $25,000; and animal welfare $17,000.