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Fieldstone Community Center: County to seek funding

CONYERS -- Rockdale County will seek $300,000 in state community block grants to potentially build a community center for the Fieldstone area that would serve low and moderate income families.

The county will hold a public hearing at 6 p.m., Friday, at Memorial Middle School to get public input on the grant application. The school is located at 3205 Underwood Road, S.E.

The grant application was first presented to the Board of Commissioners last week. Alice Cintron, Rockdale County grant administrator, explained the idea for a community center in the Fieldstone area came out of residents' requests for one during last year's public hearings for the county's Neighborhood Stabilization Program.

"A woman at the meeting said a community center was needed more than what the NSP could provide," she said. "With a public hearing, we just want to confirm that is what the community wants."

Part of the reason given for a community center was that sections along Salem Road had seen an increase in criminal activity, particularly among juveniles. A community center was offered as a possible option to crime for the youth living in the area.

It is likely no action will occur until next year. Cintron said there is no property identified for a community center and the deadline for the grant application is the end of the month.

However, Cintron said public input and work put into the grant will carry over to next year.

If feedback is positive for a community center, Cintron said the county could move forward on Request For Qualifications requests for architectural services and administrative services.

The grant would come from Georgia Department of Community Affairs for a Community Development Block Grant program and be up to $500,000. Cintron's proposal to the Board of Commissioners was for $300,000 with no required local matching funds.

People with special needs relating to handicapped accessibility or foreign language should call Cintron at 770-278-7551 or e-mail their request to alice.cintron@rockdalecounty.org.