Macon council appropriations panel OKs $2 million for possible project

A motion for Macon to contribute $2 million to the Hope VI redevelopment project for Tindall Heights, should Macon win the $90 million grant, passed the City Council’s Appropriations Committee on Monday.

Four other cities are in the running for the grant, which Macon would fund with about $700,000 per year during a three-year span that would start in 2011.

The measure goes before full council for approval tonight.

Appropriations Committee Chairman Mike Cranford said the project would generate about $90 million in federal funds to enhance the Tindall Heights public housing area along the southern edge of the Mercer University campus.

“If full council approves what we did today, then that completes the city’s obligation as far as being able to ask for and apply for the grant,” Cranford said. “They can’t accept the grant unless the city commits to that $2 million.”

In other business, the committee approved a resolution to approve a $120,000-a-year contract with a lobbying firm to look out for Macon’s interests in Washington, D.C. The contract is with Blank Rome Government Relations. The council is expected to vote on the matter tonight.