Glen Cove may not renew an award to an agency that provides services for low-income and minority youth when the City Council votes next week on grants totaling $33,000.
The grants are part of federal community development block grant money the city receives through Nassau County for public service agencies.
This year, Glen Cove EOC, the local branch of the Hempstead-based Economic Opportunity Commission of Nassau County Inc., received a $4,000 grant to help pay for programs that include summer and after-school programs and a program for high school students to visit colleges. The 40-year-old organization focuses on serving low-income minorities.
During a work session Tuesday, Mayor Reginald Spinello told City Council members that "everything is the same" as last year regarding the grants, except that the Girl Scouts' funding was being eliminated and that three organizations would get increased funding. He did not mention the plan to defund the Glen Cove EOC.
"They felt that the Girl Scouts had the ability to raise money on their own and that they didn't really need it as much as these organizations that were dependent on it," Spinello said, adding that the Girl Scouts also had not been approved for the grant last year. After the meeting, he referred questions about the EOC to the city's Community Development Agency, which awards the grants.
CDA executive director Myralee Machol said the new administration's emphasis for the grants is on new programs, and the EOC's application was for the same programs that served fewer people than others.
She said she wished they had more money but "wanted to make sure that it served the maximum number of people."
Machol said the emphasis on new programs had been discussed at a meeting Glen Cove EOC members had not attended.
Sondra Townsend-Browne, deputy executive director at the county EOC, said they did not know about the new direction. "Now that we know that they're looking for new and innovative, we will lean toward that the next time," she said.
City Councilman Tim Tenke, a Democrat, said he couldn’t comment on the funding until he knew more about it. “I would like to find out from them, Myralee, what the basis was,” Tenke said.
The CDA approved five of eight organizations that applied for funds, subject to approval by the City Council, which is expected to vote on the grants at its Tuesday meeting.The approved organizations are: SAFE, LaFuerza Unida Inc., Glen Cove Youth Bureau, Glen Cove Senior Center and Glen Cove Boys & Girls Club.