BELFAST - The city of Belfast is currently in the process of applying for 3 federal grants that would bring in nearly 1,000,000 dollars.
$900,000.00. That's how much money this coastal community could see if it receives approval for 3 federal grants.
Thomas Kittredge, the economic development director for Belfast says, "One of those is for a $250,000 dollars to benefit Mathew's Brothers, a window manufacturer; 500,000 dollars to benefit Maine Maritime products. The other 150,000 dollars is what is called a micro-enterprise assistance grant. They would sub-grant out or loan out smaller grants to micro businesses."
And its the micro enterprise assistance grant that has store owners on Main Street opening their doors.
"If we can do anything in our power to help the store owners downtown create more activity up and down the streets, i'm going to jump on it big time." Says Belfast Mayor Walter Ash.
One of those stores, Bella Books, whose owners still cringe at the word recession. Now celebrating the idea they could see a new chapter in their business.
"Oh my god, it would be a tremendous shot in the arm for us. Not only would we be able to expand out two stores, but we are able to put in additional enhancements and possible even hiring employees." Says Bella Books Co-Owner, Gary Guida.
City officials are hoping business owners will use this opportunity to expand. If Belfast does receive these grants, business owners would be able to start using them as early as July 1st.
Andrew joined the WVII ABC 7 and WFVX FOX 22 News team in June of 2012.
Since a young child he always wanted to pursue a career in Broadcast Journalism, and is honored to start his journey in Eastern Maine. He enjoys nothing more than meeting the members of the community and sharing their stories with our viewers.
Raised in Houston, Texas, Andrew graduated from Suffolk University located in Boston, Massachusetts where he majored in Communications. Before moving up to the Pine Tree State, Andrew was a student reporter for The Morning Show on New England Cable News (NECN).
When not in the newsroom, Andrew enjoys volunteering at the Bangor Humane Society. You can see him there at least once a week interacting with many of the dogs. He also enjoys cooking, reading, watching his favorite movies, and going to the gym.
Make sure to say hi when you see him on the streets, and mention Finding Nemo (his favorite movie) if you want some brownie points!