County awards $1.2 million for ICC construction

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After the Riverside County Planning Commission approved the conditional use permit for construction at the Butterfield Commons on Strawberry Creek, the management team — the San Jacinto Mountain Community Center board — received more good news.

Third District Supervisor Chuck Washington put a proposal to use $1.2 million of Community Development Block Grant funds to complete the construction of phase 2 on the Board of Supervisors’ agenda for this week. Rob Field, assistant county director for economic development, recommended approval of the action with Washington’s support.

Phase 1, which is site development including parking and the amphitheater, will cost about $1.5 million and is fully funded from grants from the Butterfield family and other donations, according to Janice Lyle, SJMCC president.

She estimates that the group has about $400,000 in reserve for phase 2, which is the community center building, including meeting rooms, a kitchen and deck.

“Supervisor Chuck Washington has been a dedicated and enthusiastic supporter of the Idyllwild Community Center project. He believes that the best way to provide recreation on the Hill is by helping to make the ICC building a reality,” she said in a email. “We are so grateful for his recommendation to use CDBG funds to make the phase 2 building possible.

“These funds will be combined with the money raised by the community in the ‘I’m Helping!’ campaign,” she added. “Approval of this grant at the Board of Supervisor’s meeting this week will mean that the time table for completion of the ICC building can be shortened. What a Christmas gift for Idyllwild!”

The supervisors amended the county’s 2016-17 One-Year Action Plan for the CBDG funding, which is managed by the county’s Economic Development Agency.

EDA staff recommended approval of the addition of the ICC project to the plan, “The … projects … have been determined by staff to be eligible activities that meet a National Objective of the CDBG program,” staff wrote.

The funds will be used for phase 2, which EDA described this way: “The Idyllwild Community Center will use CDBG funds for costs associated with the development of the facility. The 8,000-square-foot facility is the second phase of improvements to the San Jacinto Mountain Community Center site and will include activities area, outdoor deck, a lobby/gallery, and other amenities.”

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