Flathead Electric awards safety grant to Libby chamber

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The Libby Area Chamber of Commerce can soon install an ADA-accessible deck and safety railing thanks in part to the civic-mindedness of Flathead Electric Cooperative customers.

The co-op recently awarded the chamber a $4,000 “Roundup for Safety” program grant, a news release states.

The program, funded by co-op customers who elect to “round up” their monthly electricity bills, supports safety projects proposed by nonprofit organizations.

The chamber’s project was one of seven selected for funding at a Sept. 14 meeting of a board of directors whose role is to choose which projects to fund, according to co-op spokesperson Wendy Ostrom Price.

“The board selects the projects they feel best meet the criteria for safety,” she said via email.

According to application criteria, a proposal “must demonstrate that the life safety project is directly linked to providing or improving the safety for persons in the communities Flathead Electric Cooperative serves.”

“We are taking the entire old deck off,” Kim Peck, chamber board member, said via email Monday. “(It was) built in 1970s.”

Peck said construction might start in mid-October, weather permitting, and “should take a week” to complete.

The board meets monthly to review applications and select which ones to fund. The other projects the board approved in September amounted to $8,428 and included the purchases of smoke detectors, security cameras and soccer goal sandbags.

According to the co-op’s website, since 1997 the Roundup for Safety program has awarded more than $3,500,000 to organizations supporting over 1,000 projects.

Co-op members who participate in the program pay about $8 extra a year.

To join the program or apply for a grant, visit www.flatheadelectric.com/community/roundup-for-safety/.

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