Kennett Twp BOS seeks PA Multimodal matching grant

Matching grant’s focus paves the way for increased trails and walkways

By Kim Chiomento, News Editor, The Times

KENNETT  – The township’s Board of Supervisors held a special meeting last week to discuss a Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Multi Modal Grant application.  The need for a special meeting was determined by the grant application’s July 31st deadline.

The township will apply for up to a $3,000,000 grant via Multimodal Transportation Fund. The grant  requires a minimum thirty percent matching funds commitment from Kennett Township; which is estimated at a minimum of $1,222,500, however the matching percentage may increase slightly.  This matching commitment total includes an earlier grant to the Penns Manor trail project.townshipbuilding

Mike Guttman, the contractor hired to coordinate Kennett Township’s grant programs, provided a detailed presentation on the application process, the proposed new trails’ benefits and compliance that would be required of Kennett Township.  Additionally, the township has also hired grant consultants Delta and McMahon & Associates to assist with the application process.

Guttman noted that the trail plan would create the longest contiguous pedestrian and bike trail in the area. “This project would a truly walkable and bikeable Kennett,” says Guttman “The trails will complement Kennett’s largest tourist attraction, Longwood Gardens, and other Brandywine Valley recreational assets; providing another nice alternative and fosters sustainable economic development.”

The required matching funds are not currently budgeted for; however, board members suggested that perhaps an open space fund could be used.  Additionally, Guttman noted that the township will continue to seek additional grants with the hope to help defray some of the matching funds cost.  When asked about future costs associated with trail maintenance, Guttman speculated that regional land conservation groups and public/private partnerships would be supportive of maintenance efforts.  No data estimating the new trails’ economic impact on the township was available.


A breakdown of the proposed Kennett Township trails projects.

A lively discussion occurred between Board Vice-Chair Leff and Guttman regarding what percentage of agreed matching fees would best position the township to achieve a successful grant application.

Eventually Leff moved to approve township matching funding up to 37% for the Multi Modal Grant, with the intention to keep the matching funds as low as possible.  Board Chair Stevens seconded the motion and it carried with all in favor. Leff moved to adopt Resolution 2015-16 approving the matching funds of up to 37% for the Multi Modal Grant.  Stevens seconded the motion and it also carried with all in favor.  Supervisor Hammaker was not in attendance.

In other business, the board approved an early payment to Piece Fire Company for the purchase of a new fire truck for the Kennett Fire Company.  The cost of the new truck is being shared equally by Kennett Borough and Kennett Township at $567,000 each.  The decision to authorize the early payment, originally scheduled for September, was based on an $85,000 savings “early pay” incentive.


(L-R) Kennett Township Board of Supervisors Vice Chair, Dr. Richard Leff; Chair Scudder Stevens and Kennett Township Manager, Lisa Moore.

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