Administrator to be paid 85% of city grant

Published 12:14 am Saturday, November 10, 2012

A Starkville woman hired Friday by the Board of Mayor and Aldermen as project director to administer a $40,000 Cities of Service reading grant will get about 85 percent of the money.

Stefanie Ashford, an independent grant consultant who applied for the grant in the city’s name, will receive up to $34,000 of the grant as project director. The remaining $6,000 will cover the program’s operating expenses. The board accepted the grant in September.

The vote was 2-1 to hire Ashford, with South Ward Alderman Sid Beauman, opposing.

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“We’re talking like this is a $40,000 grant to help kids, but they’re only going to get $6,000 of it,” Beauman said Friday. “That’s not good, percentage-wise, to me.”

Six weeks ago, Beauman also opposed the application for the grant because he and North Ward Alderman Michael Mayfield had not been apprised of it before it was placed on the agenda. He walked out of that meeting, on Sept. 25, he said later, because Winfield failed to give him and Mayfield information about the grant in sufficient time for them to review it, violating board policy.

Cities of Service is a coalition of 113 cities across the country, including Vicksburg, formed to help improve cities by getting residents more involved in their communities.