News You Can Use from Buckeye Hills-HVRDD
Monthly News & Updates:
Feb. 2017

Buckeye Hills-Hocking Valley Regional Development District
Shriver Joins Executive Board

Adam Shriver is beginning his second term as Morgan County Commissioner. He is a lifelong resident of Morgan County and currently resides in Pennsville, Ohio where he lives with his wife Jody and his two children Abigail (9) and William (7). Adam is a graduate of Morgan High School (1998) and Ohio University (2003) where he received a Bachelor's of Science in Communications.

Adam is the Executive Director of the Twin City Opera House in McConnelsville and has held the position since 2006. He is also an instructor for Mideast Career and Technology Center in the Adult Education program and has helped several Morgan County adults receive their G.E.D's.

"I am excited to begin my second term in the commissioner's office. I am very proud of the work that we accomplished in my first four years and am confident we can continue moving Morgan County forward in the next four," said Shriver.

"We established a county-wide IT department which has helped Morgan County's public offices in a variety of ways. We completed a two-year restoration project on our county's courthouse. And through the Economic Development Office, we've been able to help the many villages, townships, water districts and other political subdivisions achieve their goals," he added.
In his second term Shriver explained he wants to continue to emphasize infrastructure improvement as a top priority.

"Morgan County, and moreover, the entire region, can never succeed without adequate and well-funded infrastructure. We need accessible water, sewer and Internet for our residents and businesses and we need to improve our roadways," he commented.
Morgan County is currently working with Buckeye Hills on several projects and they look forward to partnering on many more.

"I am very glad to be a part of the Buckeye Hills-HVRDD Executive Committee and look forward to working with all of you. Buckeye Hills has impacted the region in so many positive ways. I'm thrilled to be able to contribute" he concluded.

Bennett Retires from OPWC District 18 Integrating Committee

Buckeye Hills is the liaison for District 18 of the Ohio Public Works Commission (OPWC). The District 18 Integrating Committee bids farewell and best wishes to Fred Bennett! Fred recently retired as the Belmont County Engineer where he served for 40 years.

"One of the biggest helps that came along while I was here was that in 1988 the state established the Ohio Public Works Commission," Bennett said. The Commission provides Issue 2 funding, which provides money for local infrastructure. Bennett has been a member of the board since its founding. "I've been involved with that ever since day one."

Fred began his service on the District 18 OPWC Integrating Committee in 1988 (Round 1 and we just finished Round 31!) He is shown with Michelle Hyer, Development Spec. III / District 18 Liaison at his last meeting.


RTPO Updates:
The Buckeye Hills Regional Transportation Planning Organization reminds members of the following ODOT funding and input opportunities:

Reminder ODOT's Maritime Study: You can participate in ODOT's Maritime Study regional meeting Feb. 1 at 10 a.m. at Buckeye Hills.

ODOT requests your participation and input. The Ohio Maritime System Study will provide advice to ODOT and key State of Ohio policy makers in the context of enhancing the economic competitiveness of Ohio.

Applications for the programs listed below are now open.

Municipal Bridge - provides federal funds for bridge replacement or rehabilitation.  This program is for construction and construction administration only - design costs are not eligible.  The projects must meet the federal definition of a bridge with a span of at least 20 feet and must be listed on the National Bridge Inventory. On-line applications are due by March 1 and selected projects will be announced in June 2017.  Bridges that are eligible for this program are in Athens County - Glouster and Trimble; Noble County - Sarahsville; and Perry County  - Corning, Crooksville, New Lexington, and Roseville.
Normally requires 20% match, but with the use of toll revenue credits, the match is lowered to 5%.
Small Cities - funds projects in cities with populations from 5,000 to 24,999 not inside a MPO (Metropolitan Planning Organization).  It provides federal funds for construction and construction administration and can be used for any roadway or safety project on the federal aid system. Online applications are due March 1.  Normally requires 20% match, but with the use of toll revenue credits, the match is lowered to 5%.
Please keep in mind, the 5% match due to the toll revenue credits may not be around much longer. Using these credits can save thousands of dollars for your project and community.
If you have projects you believe might be eligible, please contact Karen Pawloski, RTPO Coordinator or your ODOT District LPA Coordinator.  For District 5:  Randy Comisford, and for District 10:  Alan Craig,  As an RTPO, we strive to provide excellent service to meet your transportation needs. Buckeye Hills' staff are ready to assist with applying for these or any other funding opportunities. 
Dates to Remember:
Friday, Feb. 3 - Executive Committee Meeting  

Local Vendors Needed for 2017  
Senior Farmers' Market Program
Do you or someone you know grow a large garden? Want to earn a little extra cash? Did you know you can participate or refer someone to the Senior Farmers' Market Nutrition Program that sells produce to eligible seniors?

The Senior Farmers' Market Nutrition Program (SFMNP) provides income-eligible senior citizens with special coupons to buy produce from approved providers. Program coupons may be exchanged for eligible foods from authorized farmers. Only fresh, locally grown fruits, herbs, vegetables and honey are eligible to be purchased with the coupons.
Local produce providers are needed to participate in the Market program. For more details on what products are included in the program or to become an authorized SFMNP provider, contact the Area Agency on Aging 8 (AAA8) at 1-800-331-2644 - ext. 2420.

SFMNP is a USDA and Ohio Department of Aging program in which grants are awarded to provide coupons to low-income seniors. Senior registration information will be available in early Spring. This institution is an equal opportunity provider.

Medicare 2017 Costs At-a-Glance

You can find the Medicare 2017 costs at a glance online. Some Medicare recipients may be eligible for "Extra Help" with Medicare costs (premiums, co-pays and RX costs).

"Extra Help is a Medicare program to help people with limited income and resources pay Medicare prescription drug (Part D) costs as well as premiums and co-pays.

The Buckeye Hills Area Agency on Aging 8 can help those on Medicare determine if they are eligible for "Extra Help." Contact AAA8 at 1-800-331-2644 for more information or to register over the phone. No travel, no waiting, just one phone call!
 This Winter Get Help with Heating Bills

Eligible low-income Ohioans can get help with the high costs of home heating. Contact AAA8 or your local Community Action organization. 

The Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) is a federally funded program administered by the Ohio Development Services Agency's Office of Community Assistance.If you are eligible for assistance, the amount of your one-time HEAP benefit will depend on:
1) federal funding levels,
2) how many people live with you,
3) total household income ($20,790 max income for single households, or $28,035 for couples), 
4) and the
primary fuel you use to heat your home.
In most cases, the one-time benefit will be a credit applied to your energy bill by your utility company (or fuel vendor). The one-time benefit is typically credited in January depending on when an individual applies for assistance.
How to apply 
Applications are available online  and through a number of community organizations, including Community Action Agencies and the Buckeye Hills Area Agency on Aging 8 (AAA8). Applications may be submitted anytime from now through June 30, 2017.
"Our staff is available to help seniors understand eligibility requirements and complete benefit applications - especially for those who are homebound," said Jennifer Westfall, AAA8 Director. "Contact our office for more details on this and other programs that may assist seniors or those with disabilities."  
Older adults and people with disabilities who wish to apply for the program should call one of the Community Action Agency partners below, depending on the county where they live:
  • Athens, Hocking & Perry: HAPCAP at 1-800-686-1093
  • Meigs: Gallia-Meigs CAP at 1-800-282-0880
  • Monroe & Noble: GMN at 740-472-0828 or 740-732-2388
  • Washington and Morgan: Washington-Morgan CAP at 740-373-3745 
Buckeye Hills-Hocking Valley Regional Development District
 740-374-9436 | 1400 PIke St. - Marietta, OH  45750 |

Misty Casto: Executive Director

Buckeye Hills is organized as a voluntary organization of local government political subdivisions to foster cooperative efforts in regional planning, and implementing of regional plans and programs.