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Oxley announces big funding for 4-H Park


July 30, 2008
State Rep. Dennie Oxley II, D-English, announced last week that state support has been secured to finance additional improvements at the Crawford County 4-H Park, including construction of a livestock barn and arena.

Oxley said members of the State Budget Committee approved a $500,000 grant for the project during the group's monthly business meeting at Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis. Oxley worked with fellow lawmakers to include the funding in the biennial state budget approved during the 2007 session of the Indiana General Assembly.

"Since the fairgrounds were moved to a new location near Marengo, officials have been looking for ways to upgrade facilities and help one of the county's best events get just a little better," Oxley said. "They formed a master plan that focused on improvements to the Expo Pavilion Building and building a livestock barn and arena."

More than $320,000 will be dedicated toward the new barn and arena, to be located next to an existing small animal barn. Plans call for a showing arena in the center of the facility, surrounded by animal pens.

"Some of the improvements to the Expo Pavilion were funded through $600,000 rural development loan and grant obtained by the Crawford County 4-H Council through the U.S. Department of Agriculture," he noted. "With that money, officials were able to install kitchen and bathroom facilities, a meeting hall and an on-site wastewater treatment facility."

Nearly $180,000 of the grant approved today will enable fairgrounds officials to proceed with improvements to lighting, heating and air conditioning systems in the pavilion.

"One of the major benefits to this project is that it will allow the Expo Pavilion to be used for events throughout the entire year, not just during the county fair," Oxley said. "The fairgrounds serves as a central location for many events, from weddings to community meetings, and the improvements detailed here can help make the facility accessible to more Crawford County residents."

Oxley praised the Crawford County Fair as a highlight each summer for area residents.

"The grounds are a place of pride for all of Crawford County, and I am delighted to do my part to see that the State of Indiana has decided to help us finance the improvements that can bring many added benefits to our area," he said.

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